It works for me!

Fonzie
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It works for me!

 

Faith in Jesus works for me - it's exciting.  I love the Bible and believe all of it - though there is mystery.  There is mystery everywhere though, right?  I am a incredibly happy believer in Jesus.  I'm not a theologian, I just believe in Jesus.

I understand you can't make anybody believe in Jesus and the Bible, and I don't personally try to do that.  But I highly recommend it from my experience with it.  I can't get enough of the Bible or Jesus.  I can't imagine trying to navigate through life without it at this point in my life. 

I don't think Jesus or God is a thing you can prove to somebody.  I heard about it a large percentage of my life and it didn't mean anything to me until a certain point - then that all changed. 

So do you guys think that I'm fooling myself, not really happy, you don't believe me, or do you really think I can't be as happy or enlightened as you - are you evangelistic in that sense or what?  What is the purpose of this site?   Do you have something better to offer?  If so, what is your gospel? 

 


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Dragoon wrote:No. Makes

Dragoon wrote:

No. Makes me sad actually. I think there's way too much focus on hell... Christians are called to proclaim the Good News, and the good news is Christ Jesus.

Which is open to interpretation. You just pick what you like, and when someone asks you why, you just hide behind the bible.

Listen mate, you either come back to your thread and answer my question and face your contradictions, or I'll just come here and keep repeating the same question untill you answer it.

 

Oh, and hi JC ! How did the play go ?

And hi Meph ! Had your blood checked yet ?


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Hey, Anonymouse.The show

Hey, Anonymouse.

The show went well - it was well received though not well attended. The retirement communities we performed for especially enjoyed it. That's all I really gave a rip about.

Getting ready to work Babes in Arms with some grade school/high school kids in about a week. Hopefully I can teach and learn here as well.

Other than that - it's just work, classes and getting closer to graduation.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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Anonymouse wrote:Dragoon

Anonymouse wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

No. Makes me sad actually. I think there's way too much focus on hell... Christians are called to proclaim the Good News, and the good news is Christ Jesus.

Which is open to interpretation. You just pick what you like, and when someone asks you why, you just hide behind the bible.

Listen mate, you either come back to your thread and answer my question and face your contradictions, or I'll just come here and keep repeating the same question untill you answer it.

Feel free to follow Anony... I've always wanted a sidekick Smiling


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Fonzie wrote:NoDeity

Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

LOL!  Thanks, Fonzie.  I'd forgotten about Romans 14:23: "And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin" (emphasis added).  That's an excellent example of what is wrong with Christianity.

 

NoDeity,

An aspect of faith is maintaining a real foundation of confidence set on rock 

Nonsense.  Faith is quite the opposite of that.  Faith is belief (or, if you prefer, confidence) without testable evidence or even in contradiction of testable evidence.  In fact, the "doubting Thomas" story makes it clear that, while demands for evidence might be tolerated, the preference is for belief without testable evidence.

 

Fonzie wrote:
- which doesn't come by dividing yourself off from yourself which would involve conscience; that is, doing things your conscience tells you not to do or going ahead when your conscience is registering doubts or setting off alarms about it. 

You can't accomplish anything in any area of life without being consecrated to it - unified and focused in your pursuit of it.  How could you enjoy going against yourself?

Doubt isn't about "going against yourself".  Doubt is about acknowledging that one cannot in good conscience and with integrity give unqualified assent to a proposition.

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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Dragoon wrote:NoDeity

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

It's a bit odd, isn't it, that some people seem to need to resort to the divine or the supernatural in order to explain what we see as normal, natural human goodness.

Hi NoDiety,

Nice to meet you.

Every man does good to those who love him. If we greet our brothers, we are behaving as normal, natural 'good' humans. Even the worst murderers and rapists probably loved their friends.

Am I allowed to tell people to fuck off on this forum?  Because that's what I feel like saying someone who makes responses as arrogant and presumptuous as Dragoon's response to me.

 

Dragoon wrote:
The 'supernatural' is when God changes normal, natural humans to love their enemies and truly pray for their good. That's God. 

Quite honestly, I think you're insane.

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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NoDeity wrote:Dragoon

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

It's a bit odd, isn't it, that some people seem to need to resort to the divine or the supernatural in order to explain what we see as normal, natural human goodness.

Hi NoDiety,

Nice to meet you.

Every man does good to those who love him. If we greet our brothers, we are behaving as normal, natural 'good' humans. Even the worst murderers and rapists probably loved their friends.

Am I allowed to tell people to fuck off on this forum?  Because that's what I feel like saying someone who makes responses as arrogant and presumptuous as Dragoon's response to me.

 

Dragoon wrote:
The 'supernatural' is when God changes normal, natural humans to love their enemies and truly pray for their good. That's God. 

Quite honestly, I think you're insane.

Hey NoDiety,

Sorry if I come across as arrogant and presumptuous.... but is there any truth in those statements?


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jcgadfly wrote:Hey,

jcgadfly wrote:
Hey, Anonymouse.

The show went well - it was well received though not well attended. The retirement communities we performed for especially enjoyed it. That's all I really gave a rip about.

That stupid cgi-movie stole your business, imo.

jcgadfly wrote:
Getting ready to work Babes in Arms with some grade school/high school kids in about a week. Hopefully I can teach and learn here as well.

Other than that - it's just work, classes and getting closer to graduation.

A musical now ? Dude, you have a wide range.


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Dragoon wrote:Feel free to

Dragoon wrote:

Feel free to follow Anony... I've always wanted a sidekick Smiling

Aww, sorry mate, but most of my posts are in Fonzie/Mephs threads anyway. This is kinda like trying to hide from me by locking yourself in my closet.

 

Btw, I checked your thread, and shock horror, you didn't answer my question yet again. You actually accused me of (lol !) not seeking answers at all. Yeah, that's why I ask people questions. So as not to get any answers.

 

I'm thinking NoDeity may have a point, but I'm still willing to give you the benefit of the doubt yet again.

 

So pretty please, go back to your thread and answer a very simple question.

Thanks.

(You also still have to reply to Tomathy's last post in your thread )

 


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Anonymouse wrote:jcgadfly

Anonymouse wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:
Hey, Anonymouse.

The show went well - it was well received though not well attended. The retirement communities we performed for especially enjoyed it. That's all I really gave a rip about.

That stupid cgi-movie stole your business, imo.

jcgadfly wrote:
Getting ready to work Babes in Arms with some grade school/high school kids in about a week. Hopefully I can teach and learn here as well.

Other than that - it's just work, classes and getting closer to graduation.

A musical now ? Dude, you have a wide range.

Not so much - I don't have a lot of singing and little if any dancing - I'm playing the Sheriff,

Only my second musical - did Damn Yankees a long time ago (no dancing then due to recovery from knee surgery).

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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Dragoon wrote:NoDeity

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

It's a bit odd, isn't it, that some people seem to need to resort to the divine or the supernatural in order to explain what we see as normal, natural human goodness.

Hi NoDiety,

Nice to meet you.

Every man does good to those who love him. If we greet our brothers, we are behaving as normal, natural 'good' humans. Even the worst murderers and rapists probably loved their friends.

Am I allowed to tell people to fuck off on this forum?  Because that's what I feel like saying someone who makes responses as arrogant and presumptuous as Dragoon's response to me.

 

Dragoon wrote:
The 'supernatural' is when God changes normal, natural humans to love their enemies and truly pray for their good. That's God. 

Quite honestly, I think you're insane.

Hey NoDiety,

Sorry if I come across as arrogant and presumptuous.... but is there any truth in those statements?

There is probably some truth to the idea that people are generally inclined to return kindness for kindness, and so on.  The fact that you have embraced an ideology that advocates being nice to people whose behaviour isn't so nice doesn't really mean anything to me.  It certainly isn't a good reason to think that the ideology is of divine origin.  Plenty of humans have come up with seemingly counter-intuitive philosophies.  Belief in the moral goodness of self-sacrifice (essentially, "loving your enemy" is a form of self-sacrifice) is hardly unique to Christianity.

I think it's simply ridiculous to make a claim like "That's God" when there are no good reasons to think that any such critter exists or has ever existed.

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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NoDeity wrote:Fonzie

NoDeity wrote:

Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

LOL!  Thanks, Fonzie.  I'd forgotten about Romans 14:23: "And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin" (emphasis added).  That's an excellent example of what is wrong with Christianity.

 

NoDeity,

An aspect of faith is maintaining a real foundation of confidence set on rock 

Nonsense.  Faith is quite the opposite of that.  Faith is belief (or, if you prefer, confidence) without testable evidence or even in contradiction of testable evidence.  In fact, the "doubting Thomas" story makes it clear that, while demands for evidence might be tolerated, the preference is for belief without testable evidence.

 

Fonzie wrote:
- which doesn't come by dividing yourself off from yourself which would involve conscience; that is, doing things your conscience tells you not to do or going ahead when your conscience is registering doubts or setting off alarms about it. 

You can't accomplish anything in any area of life without being consecrated to it - unified and focused in your pursuit of it.  How could you enjoy going against yourself?

Doubt isn't about "going against yourself".  Doubt is about acknowledging that one cannot in good conscience and with integrity give unqualified assent to a proposition.

 

NoDeity,

 

Going ahead and doing something when you are in doubt about it is going against yourself.  I didn't say just having doubts was going against yourself. 

 


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Fonzie wrote:NoDeity

Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

LOL!  Thanks, Fonzie.  I'd forgotten about Romans 14:23: "And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin" (emphasis added).  That's an excellent example of what is wrong with Christianity.

 

NoDeity,

An aspect of faith is maintaining a real foundation of confidence set on rock 

Nonsense.  Faith is quite the opposite of that.  Faith is belief (or, if you prefer, confidence) without testable evidence or even in contradiction of testable evidence.  In fact, the "doubting Thomas" story makes it clear that, while demands for evidence might be tolerated, the preference is for belief without testable evidence.

 

Fonzie wrote:
- which doesn't come by dividing yourself off from yourself which would involve conscience; that is, doing things your conscience tells you not to do or going ahead when your conscience is registering doubts or setting off alarms about it. 

You can't accomplish anything in any area of life without being consecrated to it - unified and focused in your pursuit of it.  How could you enjoy going against yourself?

Doubt isn't about "going against yourself".  Doubt is about acknowledging that one cannot in good conscience and with integrity give unqualified assent to a proposition.

 

NoDeity,

 

Going ahead and doing something when you are in doubt about it is going against yourself.  I didn't say just having doubts was going against yourself. 

 

I'm going to assume that you take that to mean when you do something "bad".

When you do something that stands against evidence but you convince yourself that the God you constructed said it is OK, that's "faith".

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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NoDeity wrote:Dragoon

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

It's a bit odd, isn't it, that some people seem to need to resort to the divine or the supernatural in order to explain what we see as normal, natural human goodness.

Hi NoDiety,

Nice to meet you.

Every man does good to those who love him. If we greet our brothers, we are behaving as normal, natural 'good' humans. Even the worst murderers and rapists probably loved their friends.

Am I allowed to tell people to fuck off on this forum?  Because that's what I feel like saying someone who makes responses as arrogant and presumptuous as Dragoon's response to me.

 

Dragoon wrote:
The 'supernatural' is when God changes normal, natural humans to love their enemies and truly pray for their good. That's God. 

Quite honestly, I think you're insane.

Hey NoDiety,

Sorry if I come across as arrogant and presumptuous.... but is there any truth in those statements?

There is probably some truth to the idea that people are generally inclined to return kindness for kindness, and so on.  The fact that you have embraced an ideology that advocates being nice to people whose behaviour isn't so nice doesn't really mean anything to me.  It certainly isn't a good reason to think that the ideology is of divine origin.  Plenty of humans have come up with seemingly counter-intuitive philosophies.  Belief in the moral goodness of self-sacrifice (essentially, "loving your enemy" is a form of self-sacrifice) is hardly unique to Christianity.

I think it's simply ridiculous to make a claim like "That's God" when there are no good reasons to think that any such critter exists or has ever existed.

The text I wrote you was essentially a paraphrase of Matthew 5:43-48. Part of what started me taking the Bible seriously was when I started seeing truth in what it said. If God is 'real' and is a critter that exists, then what he says about man and what he asks of man will stand the test of 'reality'. If it's not real, then let's burn the book as harmful lies.

In essence, is the wisdom written here in conformity with the 'real' world?

I'd say this of any religious text, be it the Koran, the Book of Mormon, Guru Granth Sahib or the Bhagavad Gita.

 

Any human created wisdom is going to have some good hits and wise bits, but if some 'entity' claiming to be an omnipowerful, omnipotent, all knowing God is 'breathing' it to man through human writers, then it had better be completely 'right'.

I struggled through a lot of things that seemed contradictory to me at first, but which after prayer (Why not? If he's not real, I conducted an experiment, if He is real...) and fuller reading more became clear.

 

How can I make a ridiculous statement like, 'That's God"? Perhaps I have good reason to think that that critter exists.


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Loving your enemies by

Loving your enemies by consigning them to eternal punishment for a disagreement that happens in the life of a human?

Telling a town (a la Pat Robertson) that they have only themselves to blame if a disaster happens to them because they wanted to teach science in science class?

If that's love, I want your undying hatred.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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NoDeity wrote:Doubt isn't

NoDeity wrote:
Doubt isn't about "going against yourself".  Doubt is about acknowledging that one cannot in good conscience and with integrity give unqualified assent to a proposition.

Fonzie wrote:
NoDeity,

Going ahead and doing something when you are in doubt about it is going against yourself.  I didn't say just having doubts was going against yourself. 

Hmmm, I guess that's correct....in a sense. 

I occasionally reflect on the reasoning behind my beliefs and their veracity. I make sure that I don't believe anything without evidence or allow my emotions to influence my beliefs. It took me a long time to become mature enough to do this, but I think, now, that it's something that's intellectually healthy to do. Is it "going against myself?" Well, if you want to put it that way, okay.

Is being skeptical a bad thing or something? Why?

This conversation isn't to be very productive, is it? Man, just reading your responses makes me want to give up on this thread all over again.

Our revels now are ended. These our actors, | As I foretold you, were all spirits, and | Are melted into air, into thin air; | And, like the baseless fabric of this vision, | The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces, | The solemn temples, the great globe itself, - Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve, | And, like this insubstantial pageant faded, | Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuff | As dreams are made on, and our little life | Is rounded with a sleep. - Shakespeare


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jcgadfly wrote:Loving your

jcgadfly wrote:

Loving your enemies by consigning them to eternal punishment for a disagreement that happens in the life of a human?

Telling a town (a la Pat Robertson) that they have only themselves to blame if a disaster happens to them because they wanted to teach science in science class?

If that's love, I want your undying hatred.

Yup, I think you're absolutely right... if that is love.

Is that really the love that the Bible describes though? As men, no matter how 'godly' we think we are, we are still fallible and human. As such, any Christian, including and especially Christian leaders, should be held accountable for how well they conform to the teachings of the God they serve.

 

In regards to your "eternal punishment for a disagreement that happens in the life of a human" comment;

If I ran away from home, and turned my back on my father, would he still love me? If I knew he still loved me, and was holding a place for me in his house, and was even searching for me and scanning the horizon for my return, but I refused to come back to him... when I die far from home, in a land that mistreated me, unloved by those around me; should I blame my father for my passing?

If God makes it clear to us that no matter how low we've fallen, He still loves us and welcomes us through Jesus Christ, but we refuse...


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Dragoon wrote:jcgadfly

Dragoon wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Loving your enemies by consigning them to eternal punishment for a disagreement that happens in the life of a human?

Telling a town (a la Pat Robertson) that they have only themselves to blame if a disaster happens to them because they wanted to teach science in science class?

If that's love, I want your undying hatred.

Yup, I think you're absolutely right... if that is love.

Is that really the love that the Bible describes though? As men, no matter how 'godly' we think we are, we are still fallible and human. As such, any Christian, including and especially Christian leaders, should be held accountable for how well they conform to the teachings of the God they serve.

 

In regards to your "eternal punishment for a disagreement that happens in the life of a human" comment;

If I ran away from home, and turned my back on my father, would he still love me? If I knew he still loved me, and was holding a place for me in his house, and was even searching for me and scanning the horizon for my return, but I refused to come back to him... when I die far from home, in a land that mistreated me, unloved by those around me; should I blame my father for my passing?

If God makes it clear to us that no matter how low we've fallen, He still loves us and welcomes us through Jesus Christ, but we refuse...

I like how you read your bible - It puts me in mind of when I read one of these.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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 And the Healthy Diet box

 And the Healthy Diet box is the part you ignore, like, Deuteronomy.


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Fonzie wrote:NoDeity

Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

LOL!  Thanks, Fonzie.  I'd forgotten about Romans 14:23: "And he that doubteth is damned if he eat, because he eateth not of faith: for whatsoever is not of faith is sin" (emphasis added).  That's an excellent example of what is wrong with Christianity.

 

NoDeity,

An aspect of faith is maintaining a real foundation of confidence set on rock 

Nonsense.  Faith is quite the opposite of that.  Faith is belief (or, if you prefer, confidence) without testable evidence or even in contradiction of testable evidence.  In fact, the "doubting Thomas" story makes it clear that, while demands for evidence might be tolerated, the preference is for belief without testable evidence.

 

Fonzie wrote:
- which doesn't come by dividing yourself off from yourself which would involve conscience; that is, doing things your conscience tells you not to do or going ahead when your conscience is registering doubts or setting off alarms about it. 

You can't accomplish anything in any area of life without being consecrated to it - unified and focused in your pursuit of it.  How could you enjoy going against yourself?

Doubt isn't about "going against yourself".  Doubt is about acknowledging that one cannot in good conscience and with integrity give unqualified assent to a proposition.

Going ahead and doing something when you are in doubt about it is going against yourself.  I didn't say just having doubts was going against yourself. 

Do you act only when you have absolute certainty?

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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Dragoon wrote:NoDeity

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

It's a bit odd, isn't it, that some people seem to need to resort to the divine or the supernatural in order to explain what we see as normal, natural human goodness.

Hi NoDiety,

Nice to meet you.

Every man does good to those who love him. If we greet our brothers, we are behaving as normal, natural 'good' humans. Even the worst murderers and rapists probably loved their friends.

Am I allowed to tell people to fuck off on this forum?  Because that's what I feel like saying someone who makes responses as arrogant and presumptuous as Dragoon's response to me.

 

Dragoon wrote:
The 'supernatural' is when God changes normal, natural humans to love their enemies and truly pray for their good. That's God. 

Quite honestly, I think you're insane.

Hey NoDiety,

Sorry if I come across as arrogant and presumptuous.... but is there any truth in those statements?

There is probably some truth to the idea that people are generally inclined to return kindness for kindness, and so on.  The fact that you have embraced an ideology that advocates being nice to people whose behaviour isn't so nice doesn't really mean anything to me.  It certainly isn't a good reason to think that the ideology is of divine origin.  Plenty of humans have come up with seemingly counter-intuitive philosophies.  Belief in the moral goodness of self-sacrifice (essentially, "loving your enemy" is a form of self-sacrifice) is hardly unique to Christianity.

I think it's simply ridiculous to make a claim like "That's God" when there are no good reasons to think that any such critter exists or has ever existed.

The text I wrote you was essentially a paraphrase of Matthew 5:43-48. 

Yes, I'm familiar with Matthew 5.  I made a special point of studying that chapter when I was in Bible college, majoring in biblical studies.

 

Dragoon wrote:
Part of what started me taking the Bible seriously was when I started seeing truth in what it said. If God is 'real' and is a critter that exists, then what he says about man and what he asks of man will stand the test of 'reality'. If it's not real, then let's burn the book as harmful lies.

Part of what started me dismissing the Bible was when I started seeing the inconsistencies, the falsehoods, and the later interpolations.  It simply cannot be taken as a reliable account of anything.  However, I don't believe in burning books, not even the likes of The Holy Bible or Mein Kampf.

 

Dragoon wrote:
In essence, is the wisdom written here in conformity with the 'real' world?

I'd say this of any religious text, be it the Koran, the Book of Mormon, Guru Granth Sahib or the Bhagavad Gita.

So, in essence, you seem to be saying that you believe the Bible because, among other things, it suggests that people are more likely to be nice to people who are nice to them.  Y'know, I don't really think divine revelation is necessary in order for humans to come up with that sort of thing.

 

Dragoon wrote:
Any human created wisdom is going to have some good hits and wise bits, but if some 'entity' claiming to be an omnipowerful, omnipotent, all knowing God is 'breathing' it to man through human writers, then it had better be completely 'right'.

The thing is, there's a lot of really horrible shit in the Bible.  Have you actually read the thing and studied it all the way through?

 

Dragoon wrote:
I struggled through a lot of things that seemed contradictory to me at first, but which after prayer (Why not? If he's not real, I conducted an experiment, if He is real...) and fuller reading more became clear.

Ah, yes.  The more you immerse yourself in the fantasy, the more easily you are able to rationalize the text in such a way that it all somehow seems to fit together.  I was that way, too, for quite a long time. 

I got better.  How?  It's a matter of values.  I started to value reason more highly than faith.

 

Dragoon wrote:
How can I make a ridiculous statement like, 'That's God"? Perhaps I have good reason to think that that critter exists.

If by "good" you mean rational and evidence-based, then you don't have any such reason.  At least, you haven't presented anything so far that suggests that you have any such reason.

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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NOT GLORIFYING DOUBT

NoDeity wrote:

 

Do you act only when you have absolute certainty?

 

NoDiety,

No.  I am imperfect in acting in conviction as in every other aspect of my life. 

We were discussing doubts, faith and conscience.  Faith in Christ can enable a believer to be certain of God and the Word of God and as Paul said, "I know Who I have believed".  Faith in Jesus can enable a believer to walk in certainty - in fellowship with Jesus and God and the Holy Spirit and with other believers.  To go ahead in doing something that the conscience has doubts about is a threat to the relationship with Jesus and would hurt the spiritual walk like a physical fall would hurt the physical walk. 

Sure there are ways I make that mistake but the way it affects my relationship with Jesus and God are a discipline in themselves, plus whatever discipline God might give me for it.  I have doubts about doing certain things and don't aim to do them until the doubts are cleared up.  I'm not talking about doing unimportant things like not knowing what will remove a stain on the wall and trying different things, but I'm talking about things that might be right or wrong before God.  I don't aim to glorify doubt in those things or go against my conscience or divide myself from myself. 

I'm willing to do imperfect things that I know will be muddled through and I know everything I do will be imperfect - but anything I have doubts about with respect to my relationship with Christ I don't aim to do.  That would be not acting in faith - it would be a threat to my walking by faith.  So I see doubts and weaknesses in myself and my works, but I have no doubts about Jesus and God and the Holy Spirit.  It's my aim to please Him and part of that has to do with not acting in doubt, not going against my conscience. 

 

 


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Fonzie wrote:NoDeity

Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

 

Do you act only when you have absolute certainty?

 

NoDiety,

No.  I am imperfect in acting in conviction as in every other aspect of my life. 

We were discussing doubts, faith and conscience.  Faith in Christ can enable a believer to be certain of God and the Word of God and as Paul said, "I know Who I have believed".  Faith in Jesus can enable a believer to walk in certainty - in fellowship with Jesus and God and the Holy Spirit and with other believers.  To go ahead in doing something that the conscience has doubts about is a threat to the relationship with Jesus and would hurt the spiritual walk like a physical fall would hurt the physical walk. 

Sure there are ways I make that mistake but the way it affects my relationship with Jesus and God are a discipline in themselves, plus whatever discipline God might give me for it.  I have doubts about doing certain things and don't aim to do them until the doubts are cleared up.  I'm not talking about doing unimportant things like not knowing what will remove a stain on the wall and trying different things, but I'm talking about things that might be right or wrong before God.  I don't aim to glorify doubt in those things or go against my conscience or divide myself from myself. 

I'm willing to do imperfect things that I know will be muddled through and I know everything I do will be imperfect - but anything I have doubts about with respect to my relationship with Christ I don't aim to do.  That would be not acting in faith - it would be a threat to my walking by faith.  So I see doubts and weaknesses in myself and my works, but I have no doubts about Jesus and God and the Holy Spirit.  It's my aim to please Him and part of that has to do with not acting in doubt, not going against my conscience. 

 

 

So you believe in God so strongly that you confuse it with knowledge? That leads to other questions.

If your conscience tells you that belief in God is detrimental to your mental health, what then? You've put someone like me in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation. Or am I following God by following my conscience even if acting on the conscience says don't believe?

Or are you just saying that you're so indoctrinated that your conscience is immediately superseded by whoever tells you they speak for God?

If a relationship with God can be achieved without turning myself into a mindless drone, it might be worth having. However, you coming and posting things that make Christians sound like the Borg just isn't helping.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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NUCLEAR QUESTION MACHINE

jcgadfly wrote:

Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

 

Do you act only when you have absolute certainty?

 

NoDiety,

No.  I am imperfect in acting in conviction as in every other aspect of my life. 

We were discussing doubts, faith and conscience.  Faith in Christ can enable a believer to be certain of God and the Word of God and as Paul said, "I know Who I have believed".  Faith in Jesus can enable a believer to walk in certainty - in fellowship with Jesus and God and the Holy Spirit and with other believers.  To go ahead in doing something that the conscience has doubts about is a threat to the relationship with Jesus and would hurt the spiritual walk like a physical fall would hurt the physical walk. 

Sure there are ways I make that mistake but the way it affects my relationship with Jesus and God are a discipline in themselves, plus whatever discipline God might give me for it.  I have doubts about doing certain things and don't aim to do them until the doubts are cleared up.  I'm not talking about doing unimportant things like not knowing what will remove a stain on the wall and trying different things, but I'm talking about things that might be right or wrong before God.  I don't aim to glorify doubt in those things or go against my conscience or divide myself from myself. 

I'm willing to do imperfect things that I know will be muddled through and I know everything I do will be imperfect - but anything I have doubts about with respect to my relationship with Christ I don't aim to do.  That would be not acting in faith - it would be a threat to my walking by faith.  So I see doubts and weaknesses in myself and my works, but I have no doubts about Jesus and God and the Holy Spirit.  It's my aim to please Him and part of that has to do with not acting in doubt, not going against my conscience. 

 

 

So you believe in God so strongly that you confuse it with knowledge? That leads to other questions.

If your conscience tells you that belief in God is detrimental to your mental health, what then? You've put someone like me in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation. Or am I following God by following my conscience even if acting on the conscience says don't believe?

Or are you just saying that you're so indoctrinated that your conscience is immediately superseded by whoever tells you they speak for God?

If a relationship with God can be achieved without turning myself into a mindless drone, it might be worth having. However, you coming and posting things that make Christians sound like the Borg just isn't helping.

 

JcGadfly,

I just mentioned how it's not good to go against your conscience, a fundamental to general well being and you are a nuclear with questions splitting out every direction.  You can hardly be sure of anything with your seeking solid spiritual footing where it isn't to be found - reason, science, knowledge of man.  Having faith in Jesus, Who He Is, What He Said, What He did is all too simple for you - so you love the darkness you are in plus make it out to be a righteous throne I should pay tribute to.  It's double-triple-locked for you enslaved to the great liar, Satan.  He throws you a few oats and says "good boy" and you think you are where you ought to be, there's none better - for sure no better Master that I would suggest.  Doubts everywhere and no peace, no real joy in that, no enjoyable walk, no abundant life.  You would have to give up too much - yourself.... and the praise of the likes of Anonymouse.  So you're just learning your lines and playing your part.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Fonzie wrote:jcgadfly

Fonzie wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

 

Do you act only when you have absolute certainty?

 

NoDiety,

No.  I am imperfect in acting in conviction as in every other aspect of my life. 

We were discussing doubts, faith and conscience.  Faith in Christ can enable a believer to be certain of God and the Word of God and as Paul said, "I know Who I have believed".  Faith in Jesus can enable a believer to walk in certainty - in fellowship with Jesus and God and the Holy Spirit and with other believers.  To go ahead in doing something that the conscience has doubts about is a threat to the relationship with Jesus and would hurt the spiritual walk like a physical fall would hurt the physical walk. 

Sure there are ways I make that mistake but the way it affects my relationship with Jesus and God are a discipline in themselves, plus whatever discipline God might give me for it.  I have doubts about doing certain things and don't aim to do them until the doubts are cleared up.  I'm not talking about doing unimportant things like not knowing what will remove a stain on the wall and trying different things, but I'm talking about things that might be right or wrong before God.  I don't aim to glorify doubt in those things or go against my conscience or divide myself from myself. 

I'm willing to do imperfect things that I know will be muddled through and I know everything I do will be imperfect - but anything I have doubts about with respect to my relationship with Christ I don't aim to do.  That would be not acting in faith - it would be a threat to my walking by faith.  So I see doubts and weaknesses in myself and my works, but I have no doubts about Jesus and God and the Holy Spirit.  It's my aim to please Him and part of that has to do with not acting in doubt, not going against my conscience. 

 

 

So you believe in God so strongly that you confuse it with knowledge? That leads to other questions.

If your conscience tells you that belief in God is detrimental to your mental health, what then? You've put someone like me in a "damned if you do, damned if you don't" situation. Or am I following God by following my conscience even if acting on the conscience says don't believe?

Or are you just saying that you're so indoctrinated that your conscience is immediately superseded by whoever tells you they speak for God?

If a relationship with God can be achieved without turning myself into a mindless drone, it might be worth having. However, you coming and posting things that make Christians sound like the Borg just isn't helping.

 

JcGadfly,

I just mentioned how it's not good to go against your conscience, a fundamental to general well being and you are a nuclear with questions splitting out every direction.  You can hardly be sure of anything with your seeking solid spiritual footing where it isn't to be found - reason, science, knowledge of man.  Having faith in Jesus, Who He Is, What He Said, What He did is all too simple for you - so you love the darkness you are in plus make it out to be a righteous throne I should pay tribute to.  It's double-triple-locked for you enslaved to the great liar, Satan.  He throws you a few oats and says "good boy" and you think you are where you ought to be, there's none better - for sure no better Master that I would suggest.  Doubts everywhere and no peace, no real joy in that, no enjoyable walk, no abundant life.  You would have to give up too much - yourself.... and the praise of the likes of Anonymouse.  So you're just learning your lines and playing your part.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Like I said, I start with knowledge. I learn things by asking questions.

I'd like for you to answer them instead of bragging/preaching/dodging.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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Fonzie wrote: I just

Fonzie wrote:
I just mentioned how it's not good to go against your conscience, a fundamental to general well being and you are a nuclear with questions splitting out every direction.

Perhaps you should have made it more clear that what you were saying is that it's not good to go against your conscience.  That's something I can agree with with.  Because I value truth and reason and because I respect scientific methods of investigation, for me to accept something purely on faith, as you clearly do, would be to violate my conscience in such a way that I could no longer respect myself.  If I were to espouse your beliefs, I would have to consider myself untrustworthy and morally corrupt.

 

Fonzie wrote:
You can hardly be sure of anything with your seeking solid spiritual footing where it isn't to be found - reason, science, knowledge of man.  Having faith in Jesus, Who He Is, What He Said, What He did is all too simple for you -

Better the honest uncertainty that accompanies a rational commitment to reality than the filthy lies of religion.

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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jcgadfly wrote:Dragoon

jcgadfly wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Loving your enemies by consigning them to eternal punishment for a disagreement that happens in the life of a human?

Telling a town (a la Pat Robertson) that they have only themselves to blame if a disaster happens to them because they wanted to teach science in science class?

If that's love, I want your undying hatred.

Yup, I think you're absolutely right... if that is love.

Is that really the love that the Bible describes though? As men, no matter how 'godly' we think we are, we are still fallible and human. As such, any Christian, including and especially Christian leaders, should be held accountable for how well they conform to the teachings of the God they serve.

 

In regards to your "eternal punishment for a disagreement that happens in the life of a human" comment;

If I ran away from home, and turned my back on my father, would he still love me? If I knew he still loved me, and was holding a place for me in his house, and was even searching for me and scanning the horizon for my return, but I refused to come back to him... when I die far from home, in a land that mistreated me, unloved by those around me; should I blame my father for my passing?

If God makes it clear to us that no matter how low we've fallen, He still loves us and welcomes us through Jesus Christ, but we refuse...

I like how you read your bible - It puts me in mind of when I read one of these. (see Chinese food menu)

I think we all need to be careful of that.... if we are talking of God, we should neither look only at what seems 'good', but also what may seem 'bad' to us.  Look over what I wrote though... its not so much different from what you wrote, as looking at it from a different viewpoint.

Let me use an analogy.

 

You're talking about my father, and what a hard man he is. How cruel he is when you see him, and how abrupt.

I know my father though, and have lived in his house all my life. Where you speak of his actions and posit cruelty, I see those same actions in light of the father I know. Because I know him, and have seen him. I've seen how he loves all his children, how he desires the best for all of them. I also see how he cries for his lost children, and how deeply he desires to bring them home.

With some, he reminds them of his love. With others, he sends us, his childrren to walk with them. With others though, he's tried in every way to show them his love, and to bring them home he is even ready to appear harsh and unloving... so that they do not come to harm.

He loves us enough to value and respect our choices though, and if we refuse even his Son, then he will respect even that choice.

 

This isn't selective memory, its merely knowing my father.


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NoDeity wrote:There is

NoDeity wrote:

There is probably some truth to the idea that people are generally inclined to return kindness for kindness, and so on.  The fact that you have embraced an ideology that advocates being nice to people whose behaviour isn't so nice doesn't really mean anything to me.  It certainly isn't a good reason to think that the ideology is of divine origin.  Plenty of humans have come up with seemingly counter-intuitive philosophies.  Belief in the moral goodness of self-sacrifice (essentially, "loving your enemy" is a form of self-sacrifice) is hardly unique to Christianity.

I think it's simply ridiculous to make a claim like "That's God" when there are no good reasons to think that any such critter exists or has ever existed.

Dragoon wrote:
The text I wrote you was essentially a paraphrase of Matthew 5:43-48. 

Yes, I'm familiar with Matthew 5.  I made a special point of studying that chapter when I was in Bible college, majoring in biblical studies.

Why did my first post bother you then if you were already familiar with it?

 

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:
Part of what started me taking the Bible seriously was when I started seeing truth in what it said. If God is 'real' and is a critter that exists, then what he says about man and what he asks of man will stand the test of 'reality'. If it's not real, then let's burn the book as harmful lies.

Part of what started me dismissing the Bible was when I started seeing the inconsistencies, the falsehoods, and the later interpolations.  It simply cannot be taken as a reliable account of anything.  However, I don't believe in burning books, not even the likes of The Holy Bible or Mein Kampf.

Dragoon wrote:
In essence, is the wisdom written here in conformity with the 'real' world?

I'd say this of any religious text, be it the Koran, the Book of Mormon, Guru Granth Sahib or the Bhagavad Gita.

So, in essence, you seem to be saying that you believe the Bible because, among other things, it suggests that people are more likely to be nice to people who are nice to them.  Y'know, I don't really think divine revelation is necessary in order for humans to come up with that sort of thing.

Dragoon wrote:
Any human created wisdom is going to have some good hits and wise bits, but if some 'entity' claiming to be an omnipowerful, omnipotent, all knowing God is 'breathing' it to man through human writers, then it had better be completely 'right'.

The thing is, there's a lot of really horrible shit in the Bible.  Have you actually read the thing and studied it all the way through?

Of course. I studied quite 'studiously' actually, as I walked the reverse path from you. I spent most of my life as an active anti-Christian. Wrestling with God can have unexpected consequences though...

Would you mind sharing some of the 'inconsistancies'? I'd be curious if nothing else.

What are you calling 'later interpretations'? Are you referring to the views of some that Paul/Saul added concepts? 

 

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:
I struggled through a lot of things that seemed contradictory to me at first, but which after prayer (Why not? If he's not real, I conducted an experiment, if He is real...) and fuller reading more became clear.

Ah, yes.  The more you immerse yourself in the fantasy, the more easily you are able to rationalize the text in such a way that it all somehow seems to fit together.  I was that way, too, for quite a long time. 

I got better.  How?  It's a matter of values.  I started to value reason more highly than faith.

If that were true, we'd see Mythology profs or specialists in fiction believe their subject matter was real, which I would say is clearly not the case. Certainly some people do, but I'd argue that says more about the individuals than it does about the text. 

Look at your own case. If what you said were true, then wouldn't your years of Bible college have internalized your 'rationalizing' to the point that nothing would have swayed you?

NoDeity wrote:
Dragoon wrote:
How can I make a ridiculous statement like, 'That's God"? Perhaps I have good reason to think that that critter exists.

If by "good" you mean rational and evidence-based, then you don't have any such reason.  At least, you haven't presented anything so far that suggests that you have any such reason.

I don't think we'll ever find 'evidence' for God (the Biblical Christian God) in the scientific sense. If God is not real, then there is no evidence. If he is real, then he has obviously chosen to not make his existance self evident. God is not verifyable (or the opposite) by science... but there is 'proof' in other senses of the word though.

Before we married, my wife 'proved' she loved me, and she managed to do it without the use of any test tubes or bunsen burners. I would hope that I 'proved' my love to her as well. We each trust our closest friends... yet that trust is not based on any scientific standard. This does not make our love for our spouses or friends irrational or lacking in basis. It simply means that scientific evidence is not the sole criteria for our accepting things as 'real'.

What that evidence 'is' is not really important, since any and all of it can be discounted as subjective... which of course it is. The bottom line was that it was  sufficient to get me to do a 360 turn in my life and viewpoints. Does that prove God's existance? No way.

I hope it does say that we should consider the question seriously though.

 


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Dragoon wrote:jcgadfly

Dragoon wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Loving your enemies by consigning them to eternal punishment for a disagreement that happens in the life of a human?

Telling a town (a la Pat Robertson) that they have only themselves to blame if a disaster happens to them because they wanted to teach science in science class?

If that's love, I want your undying hatred.

Yup, I think you're absolutely right... if that is love.

Is that really the love that the Bible describes though? As men, no matter how 'godly' we think we are, we are still fallible and human. As such, any Christian, including and especially Christian leaders, should be held accountable for how well they conform to the teachings of the God they serve.

 

In regards to your "eternal punishment for a disagreement that happens in the life of a human" comment;

If I ran away from home, and turned my back on my father, would he still love me? If I knew he still loved me, and was holding a place for me in his house, and was even searching for me and scanning the horizon for my return, but I refused to come back to him... when I die far from home, in a land that mistreated me, unloved by those around me; should I blame my father for my passing?

If God makes it clear to us that no matter how low we've fallen, He still loves us and welcomes us through Jesus Christ, but we refuse...

I like how you read your bible - It puts me in mind of when I read one of these. (see Chinese food menu)

I think we all need to be careful of that.... if we are talking of God, we should neither look only at what seems 'good', but also what may seem 'bad' to us.  Look over what I wrote though... its not so much different from what you wrote, as looking at it from a different viewpoint.

Let me use an analogy.

 

You're talking about my father, and what a hard man he is. How cruel he is when you see him, and how abrupt.

I know my father though, and have lived in his house all my life. Where you speak of his actions and posit cruelty, I see those same actions in light of the father I know. Because I know him, and have seen him. I've seen how he loves all his children, how he desires the best for all of them. I also see how he cries for his lost children, and how deeply he desires to bring them home.

With some, he reminds them of his love. With others, he sends us, his childrren to walk with them. With others though, he's tried in every way to show them his love, and to bring them home he is even ready to appear harsh and unloving... so that they do not come to harm.

He loves us enough to value and respect our choices though, and if we refuse even his Son, then he will respect even that choice.

 

This isn't selective memory, its merely knowing my father.

Except that I know your father as well. I lived in his house as well.

Eventually, I grew up and moved on. Why do you live with someone who won't let you grow up?

Or is it that you just don't wish to?

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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I think I might be staying

Hey JC,

 

I think I might be staying in your old room Eye-wink

 

When I moved out of my parents home in real life, my father and I didn't really get along. After years away though, and experiences with my dad's parent culture, I came back and saw my dad through fresher eyes. We still don't get along 'great', but we're working on it each time we see each other.

Growing up doesn't mean dispising our parents... it means seeing them honestly for who they are. What we perceive as restriction, is often just love and concern expressed in ways we don't understand. I think I truly 'grew up' when I came back and was willing to see past my own hurts, and to see my father's hurts as well.

 

As to God... let's compare notes and see why we see Him differently.


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NoDeity wrote:Fonzie wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Fonzie wrote:
I just mentioned how it's not good to go against your conscience, a fundamental to general well being and you are a nuclear with questions splitting out every direction.

Perhaps you should have made it more clear that what you were saying is that it's not good to go against your conscience.  That's something I can agree with with.  Because I value truth and reason and because I respect scientific methods of investigation, for me to accept something purely on faith, as you clearly do, would be to violate my conscience in such a way that I could no longer respect myself.  If I were to espouse your beliefs, I would have to consider myself untrustworthy and morally corrupt.

 

Fonzie wrote:
You can hardly be sure of anything with your seeking solid spiritual footing where it isn't to be found - reason, science, knowledge of man.  Having faith in Jesus, Who He Is, What He Said, What He did is all too simple for you -

Better the honest uncertainty that accompanies a rational commitment to reality than the filthy lies of religion.

 

NoDeity,

There is a "dark initiation" experience that others I know of have gone through (me too) that has to do with trying to achieve peace and good attitudes and courage, etc, through "really trying" through our own strength.  The initiation and the knocks of that school - righteousness by works - is a paddle line that shows us it can't  be realized.  You can have the same experience through your efforts of investigation - on your own power.

This is not the way it is achieved.  This is not the way God saves people, rescues people.  He does it through faith.  For example; the way God dealt with Abraham was promises and Abraham's response of faith.  Abraham believed the promises. 

The "peace of God that passes understanding" is received through faith in Christ crucified.  The gift of the Holy Spirit is received by hearing the gospel in faith.  And the relationship continues as a continual gift received through faith.  It's not easy making this transition from DIY (whatever approach, science, reason, ceremonies, trying hard to be righteous, etc) - it's a struggle.  It's a struggle for one who is "born again" (let alone one who is not) - because weeds keep springing up in the corrupt heart.  It all happens in imperfect conditions.  But the gift of the Holy Spirit received by faith in Christ causes a new light and strength and a new edge on things to happen.  Salvation happens in the now sense. 

Now what we have been discussing here lately is this thing of going against conscience, which you also agree is not good.  From my perspective it is not only not good but is a great threat to maintaining this light and eye of faith, and a thing that if I did it would cause me to grieve the Holy Spirit within me - a thing I DON'T want to do believe me.  God is good, and one way He manifests that goodness is by this thing called discipline.  I don't aim to taste that if I can help it.  (I see discipline as a great thing don't get me wrong, and I love discipline for what it does, but it's not recreation and I aim to avoid it if at all possible).  So I am speaking of the idea of going against conscience with that view.

Additional evidence in Scripture (I'm aware you don't think in these terms, but I'm telling you where I'm coming from) that the relationship Abraham (I who am but dust and ashes) and David (I was like a ignorant beast before Thee) had with God wasn't based on good works or self righteousness was their perspective of themselves before God.  Their relationship with God was based on believing God, What He Says, Who He Is. 

When salvation received by faith in Jesus crucified, raised from the dead, is received by faith and the new birth happens, then peace happens.  There's still a struggle getting spiritual sea legs, but it's like a border collie rescued from an animal shelter and brought out to herd sheep.  He can begin to realize what he was really made for.  It's the same with us.  We find the abundant life in Christ.

 

 

"Let me ask you only this: Did you receive the Spirit by works of the law or by hearing with faith?  Are you so foolish?  Having begun with the Spirit are you now ending with the flesh?"

 


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Dragoon wrote:NoDeity

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

There is probably some truth to the idea that people are generally inclined to return kindness for kindness, and so on.  The fact that you have embraced an ideology that advocates being nice to people whose behaviour isn't so nice doesn't really mean anything to me.  It certainly isn't a good reason to think that the ideology is of divine origin.  Plenty of humans have come up with seemingly counter-intuitive philosophies.  Belief in the moral goodness of self-sacrifice (essentially, "loving your enemy" is a form of self-sacrifice) is hardly unique to Christianity.

I think it's simply ridiculous to make a claim like "That's God" when there are no good reasons to think that any such critter exists or has ever existed.

Dragoon wrote:
The text I wrote you was essentially a paraphrase of Matthew 5:43-48. 

Yes, I'm familiar with Matthew 5.  I made a special point of studying that chapter when I was in Bible college, majoring in biblical studies.

Why did my first post bother you then if you were already familiar with it?

The arrogance of it has nothing to do with my familiarity of it.

 

Dragoon wrote:
NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:
Part of what started me taking the Bible seriously was when I started seeing truth in what it said. If God is 'real' and is a critter that exists, then what he says about man and what he asks of man will stand the test of 'reality'. If it's not real, then let's burn the book as harmful lies.

Part of what started me dismissing the Bible was when I started seeing the inconsistencies, the falsehoods, and the later interpolations.  It simply cannot be taken as a reliable account of anything.  However, I don't believe in burning books, not even the likes of The Holy Bible or Mein Kampf.

Dragoon wrote:
In essence, is the wisdom written here in conformity with the 'real' world?

I'd say this of any religious text, be it the Koran, the Book of Mormon, Guru Granth Sahib or the Bhagavad Gita.

So, in essence, you seem to be saying that you believe the Bible because, among other things, it suggests that people are more likely to be nice to people who are nice to them.  Y'know, I don't really think divine revelation is necessary in order for humans to come up with that sort of thing.

Dragoon wrote:
Any human created wisdom is going to have some good hits and wise bits, but if some 'entity' claiming to be an omnipowerful, omnipotent, all knowing God is 'breathing' it to man through human writers, then it had better be completely 'right'.

The thing is, there's a lot of really horrible shit in the Bible.  Have you actually read the thing and studied it all the way through?

Of course. I studied quite 'studiously' actually, as I walked the reverse path from you. I spent most of my life as an active anti-Christian. Wrestling with God can have unexpected consequences though...

Would you mind sharing some of the 'inconsistancies'? I'd be curious if nothing else.

For one thing, the various gospel accounts of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus cannot be put together in one narrative that leaves nothing out and is not self-contradictory.  If you want more, there are numerous lists of Bible contradictions and inconsistencies.

 

Dragoon wrote:
What are you calling 'later interpretations'? Are you referring to the views of some that Paul/Saul added concepts?

That's interpolations, not interpretations.  Interpolations in the Bible are additions and changes to the text that were made long after the texts were first written.  For example, take the story in John 8 in which an adulteress is brought before Jesus, prompting him to utter that famous line, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone".  It's perhaps one of the best stories in the New Testament but it is not found in the earliest versions of the book of John.  It was added later by someone else.

 

Dragoon wrote:
NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:
I struggled through a lot of things that seemed contradictory to me at first, but which after prayer (Why not? If he's not real, I conducted an experiment, if He is real...) and fuller reading more became clear.

Ah, yes.  The more you immerse yourself in the fantasy, the more easily you are able to rationalize the text in such a way that it all somehow seems to fit together.  I was that way, too, for quite a long time. 

I got better.  How?  It's a matter of values.  I started to value reason more highly than faith.

If that were true, we'd see Mythology profs or specialists in fiction believe their subject matter was real, which I would say is clearly not the case. Certainly some people do, but I'd argue that says more about the individuals than it does about the text.

I don't think that's a very good analogy.  Scholars who specialize in mythology know they're studying mythology and they haven't been taught from infancy to believe that the mythology is actual history.

 

Dragoon wrote:
Look at your own case. If what you said were true, then wouldn't your years of Bible college have internalized your 'rationalizing' to the point that nothing would have swayed you?

Actually, my time in Bible college awakened me to the idea that there is such a thing as biblical criticism and that serious biblical scholars (even those who are Christians) don't necessarily take everything in the Bible at face value.

 

Dragoon wrote:
NoDeity wrote:
Dragoon wrote:
How can I make a ridiculous statement like, 'That's God"? Perhaps I have good reason to think that that critter exists.

If by "good" you mean rational and evidence-based, then you don't have any such reason.  At least, you haven't presented anything so far that suggests that you have any such reason.

I don't think we'll ever find 'evidence' for God (the Biblical Christian God) in the scientific sense. If God is not real, then there is no evidence. If he is real, then he has obviously chosen to not make his existance self evident.

Why is God so shy?

 

Dragoon wrote:
God is not verifyable (or the opposite) by science... but there is 'proof' in other senses of the word though.

Before we married, my wife 'proved' she loved me, and she managed to do it without the use of any test tubes or bunsen burners. I would hope that I 'proved' my love to her as well. We each trust our closest friends... yet that trust is not based on any scientific standard. This does not make our love for our spouses or friends irrational or lacking in basis. It simply means that scientific evidence is not the sole criteria for our accepting things as 'real'.

What that evidence 'is' is not really important, since any and all of it can be discounted as subjective... which of course it is. The bottom line was that it was  sufficient to get me to do a 360 turn in my life and viewpoints. Does that prove God's existance? No way.

I hope it does say that we should consider the question seriously though.

You and your wife gave each other plenty of tangible evidence of your love before you were married.  You more-or-less consistently behaved in certain ways that could reasonably be taken as evidence of your esteem for one another and your commitment to one another.  That is not at all analogous to a "relationship" with an undetectable god.

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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NoDiety wrote:Dragoon

NoDiety wrote:
Dragoon wrote:

Would you mind sharing some of the 'inconsistancies'? I'd be curious if nothing else.

 

For one thing, the various gospel accounts of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus cannot be put together in one narrative that leaves nothing out and is not self-contradictory.  If you want more, there are numerous lists of Bible contradictions and inconsistencies.

 

Thanks ND. I'm not really interested in 'a' list, but rather the ones that stand out for you as vital.

If I spoke to 4 witnesses to a UFO encounter, and all 4 gave me identical accounts of what had occured, my assumption would be that they had doctored their facts and were lying.

You're absolutely right that the 4 Gospel accounts carry different narratives. Almost as if 4 people remembered things slightly differently... whih is what I'd expect with real people.

If there was deliberate attempt to hide things, then we would find that the 4 accounts all matched up pefectly, yet we don't. Those that wrote or compiled the books of the Bible were satisfied that what they had could stand on its own merits.

I'm not trying to 'convert' you to Christ. I don't believe anyone can do that except the Holy Spirit acting in concert with the person themself. I would hope to clarify issues though, and to let people make their own choice based upon the best evidence available.

 

NoDiety wrote:

 

Dragoon wrote:
What are you calling 'later interpretations'? Are you referring to the views of some that Paul/Saul added concepts?

 

That's interpolations, not interpretations.  Interpolations in the Bible are additions and changes to the text that were made long after the texts were first written.  For example, take the story in John 8 in which an adulteress is brought before Jesus, prompting him to utter that famous line, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone".  It's perhaps one of the best stories in the New Testament but it is not found in the earliest versions of the book of John.  It was added later by someone else.

Thanks for the clarification.

You may want to check up on the status of that passage. Not being expert in that area, I would not deign to assert things I don't have sound knowledge on. Please let me know what you find though, as its a good question.

It is important that we know what is reliable or not in scripture, and textual criticism and analysis is part of this. Most Bibles I'm aware of have clear reference to the fact that these passages are not in our earliest manuscript evidence though.

Do you think the possible interpolation affects our understanding of Christ though, or does it merely reinforce other passages and teachings?

 

NoDiety wrote:

 

Dragoon wrote:
NoDeity wrote:

 

 

Dragoon wrote:
I struggled through a lot of things that seemed contradictory to me at first, but which after prayer (Why not? If he's not real, I conducted an experiment, if He is real...) and fuller reading more became clear.

 

Ah, yes.  The more you immerse yourself in the fantasy, the more easily you are able to rationalize the text in such a way that it all somehow seems to fit together.  I was that way, too, for quite a long time. 

I got better.  How?  It's a matter of values.  I started to value reason more highly than faith.

 

If that were true, we'd see Mythology profs or specialists in fiction believe their subject matter was real, which I would say is clearly not the case. Certainly some people do, but I'd argue that says more about the individuals than it does about the text.

 

I don't think that's a very good analogy.  Scholars who specialize in mythology know they're studying mythology and they haven't been taught from infancy to believe that the mythology is actual history.

No offense to your background, but my parents were Atheists. Many, like me, did not grow up with ANY belief in the historical reliability of the Bible, and I was taught the Bible was myth from infancy.... 

 

Gotta go. I'll continue this later.

 


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Dragoon wrote:NoDiety

Dragoon wrote:

NoDiety wrote:
Dragoon wrote:

Would you mind sharing some of the 'inconsistancies'? I'd be curious if nothing else.

 

For one thing, the various gospel accounts of the crucifixion and resurrection of Jesus cannot be put together in one narrative that leaves nothing out and is not self-contradictory.  If you want more, there are numerous lists of Bible contradictions and inconsistencies.

 

Thanks ND. I'm not really interested in 'a' list, but rather the ones that stand out for you as vital.

If I spoke to 4 witnesses to a UFO encounter, and all 4 gave me identical accounts of what had occured, my assumption would be that they had doctored their facts and were lying.

You're absolutely right that the 4 Gospel accounts carry different narratives. Almost as if 4 people remembered things slightly differently... whih is what I'd expect with real people.

If there was deliberate attempt to hide things, then we would find that the 4 accounts all matched up pefectly, yet we don't. Those that wrote or compiled the books of the Bible were satisfied that what they had could stand on its own merits.

I'm not trying to 'convert' you to Christ. I don't believe anyone can do that except the Holy Spirit acting in concert with the person themself. I would hope to clarify issues though, and to let people make their own choice based upon the best evidence available.

The purpose of mentioning the inconsistencies and internal contradictions is to show that the Bible is not inerrant but, if you already understand that the book is not perfect, then it's a moot point.  However, recognizing that it's a human book does significantly dilute the authority that many Christian sects attribute to it.

 

Dragoon wrote:
NoDiety wrote:

 

Dragoon wrote:
What are you calling 'later interpretations'? Are you referring to the views of some that Paul/Saul added concepts?

 

That's interpolations, not interpretations.  Interpolations in the Bible are additions and changes to the text that were made long after the texts were first written.  For example, take the story in John 8 in which an adulteress is brought before Jesus, prompting him to utter that famous line, "Let he who is without sin cast the first stone".  It's perhaps one of the best stories in the New Testament but it is not found in the earliest versions of the book of John.  It was added later by someone else.

Thanks for the clarification.

You may want to check up on the status of that passage. Not being expert in that area, I would not deign to assert things I don't have sound knowledge on. Please let me know what you find though, as its a good question.

It is important that we know what is reliable or not in scripture, and textual criticism and analysis is part of this. Most Bibles I'm aware of have clear reference to the fact that these passages are not in our earliest manuscript evidence though.

Do you think the possible interpolation affects our understanding of Christ though, or does it merely reinforce other passages and teachings?

I think that the evidence of interpolations in the Bible tells us that the Bible is not as reliable as some would have us think it is.

 

Dragoon wrote:
NoDiety wrote:

 

Dragoon wrote:
NoDeity wrote:

 

 

Dragoon wrote:
I struggled through a lot of things that seemed contradictory to me at first, but which after prayer (Why not? If he's not real, I conducted an experiment, if He is real...) and fuller reading more became clear.

 

Ah, yes.  The more you immerse yourself in the fantasy, the more easily you are able to rationalize the text in such a way that it all somehow seems to fit together.  I was that way, too, for quite a long time. 

I got better.  How?  It's a matter of values.  I started to value reason more highly than faith.

 

If that were true, we'd see Mythology profs or specialists in fiction believe their subject matter was real, which I would say is clearly not the case. Certainly some people do, but I'd argue that says more about the individuals than it does about the text.

 

I don't think that's a very good analogy.  Scholars who specialize in mythology know they're studying mythology and they haven't been taught from infancy to believe that the mythology is actual history.

No offense to your background, but my parents were Atheists. Many, like me, did not grow up with ANY belief in the historical reliability of the Bible, and I was taught the Bible was myth from infancy.... 

How open are you to evidence that the Bible is a human book that contains errors?

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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As a historian, I'm very

As a historian, I'm very interested and open to error in the Bible. As a person who is fascinated by languages, I'm very aware of the limitations of translation and linguistic change over time and distance.

 

The reliability of the Bible does not come from perfect transcription, translation, or any human function though.

The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This is the Spirit which will guide us in all truth (John 16:13), so that we may understand what God has freely given us (1Cor 2:12).

This is the Spirit of whom Christ says, "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you" (John 14:26) 


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Dragoon wrote:As a

Dragoon wrote:

As a historian, I'm very interested and open to error in the Bible. As a person who is fascinated by languages, I'm very aware of the limitations of translation and linguistic change over time and distance.

 

The reliability of the Bible does not come from perfect transcription, translation, or any human function though.

The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This is the Spirit which will guide us in all truth (John 16:13), so that we may understand what God has freely given us (1Cor 2:12).

This is the Spirit of whom Christ says, "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you" (John 14:26) 

So you read for circularity?

You read and understand the Bible believing God is reliable. You believe God is reliable because the Bible you're reading and understanding says so.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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Dragoon wrote: The

Dragoon wrote:
The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. 

Ah, yes.  The Magic Jesus Glasses that enable you to see harmony and unity where people using mere reason and observation see inconsistency and self-contradiction.  My prescription ran out years ago...

 

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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jcgadfly wrote:Dragoon

jcgadfly wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

As a historian, I'm very interested and open to error in the Bible. As a person who is fascinated by languages, I'm very aware of the limitations of translation and linguistic change over time and distance.

 

The reliability of the Bible does not come from perfect transcription, translation, or any human function though.

The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This is the Spirit which will guide us in all truth (John 16:13), so that we may understand what God has freely given us (1Cor 2:12).

This is the Spirit of whom Christ says, "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you" (John 14:26) 

So you read for circularity?

You read and understand the Bible believing God is reliable. You believe God is reliable because the Bible you're reading and understanding says so.

Actually I read highly 'critically'. Do I desire something and am trying to 'make' the Bible conform to my wishes? Is there Bible interpretation saying something that the text does not support? If the Bible conforms to my wish list, I better read it again more carefully, because God is not about satisfying my selfish dreams and wishes.

You forget that unlike yourself, I didn't come from a Christian background. I never believed in Biblical or Godly reliability... it is the reliability that overcame my doubts and skepicism. I found that trust in God is reliable, because experience confirmed what the Bible said and what God promises.


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Dragoon wrote:jcgadfly

Dragoon wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

As a historian, I'm very interested and open to error in the Bible. As a person who is fascinated by languages, I'm very aware of the limitations of translation and linguistic change over time and distance.

 

The reliability of the Bible does not come from perfect transcription, translation, or any human function though.

The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This is the Spirit which will guide us in all truth (John 16:13), so that we may understand what God has freely given us (1Cor 2:12).

This is the Spirit of whom Christ says, "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you" (John 14:26) 

So you read for circularity?

You read and understand the Bible believing God is reliable. You believe God is reliable because the Bible you're reading and understanding says so.

Actually I read highly 'critically'. Do I desire something and am trying to 'make' the Bible conform to my wishes? Is there Bible interpretation saying something that the text does not support? If the Bible conforms to my wish list, I better read it again more carefully, because God is not about satisfying my selfish dreams and wishes.

You forget that unlike yourself, I didn't come from a Christian background. I never believed in Biblical or Godly reliability... it is the reliability that overcame my doubts and skepicism. I found that trust in God is reliable, because experience confirmed what the Bible said and what God promises.

Oh, so you had something favorable happen to you and you went to the Bible and found a scripture to attach to it?

Kind of like how the gospel writers made Jesus the Messiah.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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NoDeity wrote:Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:
The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. 

Ah, yes.  The Magic Jesus Glasses that enable you to see harmony and unity where people using mere reason and observation see inconsistency and self-contradiction.  My prescription ran out years ago...

 

Perhaps, but which is reality. The 'prescription' didn't come first... it came after. It was reason and observation that led me to try the 'prescription'.

Do you mind if I ask, how did you 'know' you had the Holy Spirit? This isn't a lead in to a slam. I'd just like to know more about who you were and how you saw the world when you were a believer.


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jcgadfly wrote:Dragoon

jcgadfly wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

As a historian, I'm very interested and open to error in the Bible. As a person who is fascinated by languages, I'm very aware of the limitations of translation and linguistic change over time and distance.

 

The reliability of the Bible does not come from perfect transcription, translation, or any human function though.

The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This is the Spirit which will guide us in all truth (John 16:13), so that we may understand what God has freely given us (1Cor 2:12).

This is the Spirit of whom Christ says, "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you" (John 14:26) 

So you read for circularity?

You read and understand the Bible believing God is reliable. You believe God is reliable because the Bible you're reading and understanding says so.

Actually I read highly 'critically'. Do I desire something and am trying to 'make' the Bible conform to my wishes? Is there Bible interpretation saying something that the text does not support? If the Bible conforms to my wish list, I better read it again more carefully, because God is not about satisfying my selfish dreams and wishes.

You forget that unlike yourself, I didn't come from a Christian background. I never believed in Biblical or Godly reliability... it is the reliability that overcame my doubts and skepicism. I found that trust in God is reliable, because experience confirmed what the Bible said and what God promises.

Oh, so you had something favorable happen to you and you went to the Bible and found a scripture to attach to it?

Kind of like how the gospel writers made Jesus the Messiah.

Favourable???? LOL Absolutely not!

I was well off financially, was having fun with friends, women and just 'being me', and then God keeps stepping into the picture and saying, "Wait. I'm real. What are you going to do about it."

Maybe that's how the gospel writers met Jesus as well... challenging them from the safety of their preconceptions and old lives.


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Dragoon wrote:jcgadfly

Dragoon wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

jcgadfly wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

As a historian, I'm very interested and open to error in the Bible. As a person who is fascinated by languages, I'm very aware of the limitations of translation and linguistic change over time and distance.

 

The reliability of the Bible does not come from perfect transcription, translation, or any human function though.

The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. This is the Spirit which will guide us in all truth (John 16:13), so that we may understand what God has freely given us (1Cor 2:12).

This is the Spirit of whom Christ says, "But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you" (John 14:26) 

So you read for circularity?

You read and understand the Bible believing God is reliable. You believe God is reliable because the Bible you're reading and understanding says so.

Actually I read highly 'critically'. Do I desire something and am trying to 'make' the Bible conform to my wishes? Is there Bible interpretation saying something that the text does not support? If the Bible conforms to my wish list, I better read it again more carefully, because God is not about satisfying my selfish dreams and wishes.

You forget that unlike yourself, I didn't come from a Christian background. I never believed in Biblical or Godly reliability... it is the reliability that overcame my doubts and skepicism. I found that trust in God is reliable, because experience confirmed what the Bible said and what God promises.

Oh, so you had something favorable happen to you and you went to the Bible and found a scripture to attach to it?

Kind of like how the gospel writers made Jesus the Messiah.

Favourable???? LOL Absolutely not!

I was well off financially, was having fun with friends, women and just 'being me', and then God keeps stepping into the picture and saying, "Wait. I'm real. What are you going to do about it."

Maybe that's how the gospel writers met Jesus as well... challenging them from the safety of their preconceptions and old lives.

So you had no experience with God in your life and yet God decided to introduce himself to you without you seeking him?

Forgive me for letting you know that rings very false.

As for the writers, it was less of a challenge for them and more of them trying to sell a religion.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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Dragoon wrote:Favourable????

Dragoon wrote:

Favourable???? LOL Absolutely not!

I was well off financially, was having fun with friends, women and just 'being me', and then God keeps stepping into the picture and saying, "Wait. I'm real. What are you going to do about it."

Maybe that's how the gospel writers met Jesus as well... challenging them from the safety of their preconceptions and old lives.

So you had no experience with God in your life and yet God decided to introduce himself to you without you seeking him?

Forgive me for letting you know that rings very false.

As for the writers, it was less of a challenge for them and more of them trying to sell a religion.

Please read the message over again. I didn't say 'no experience', just nothing that was easily classed as "something favorable happen." I'd hope something I didn't say would ring false Eye-wink

 

I'm not sure how you quantify the gospel writers as trying to 'sell a religion'. They didn't found a new religion, to them they were still Jews, and Jesus was the promised Messiach. They certainly believed the message that Christ gave them, and believed quite strongly that he had truly risen from the dead.

 

Seriously... you have

1) simple people

2) their leader has just been arrested and crucified

They should have faded away, been discouraged, and fallen apart. Instead;

1) their numbers grow rapidly

2) they spread throughout the region and later the world

3) they endure hardship and eventual painful deaths

4) they write accounts of Jesus resurrection which, if false would have been easy for contemporaries to attack

I'm not sure how you quantify "less of a challenge for them." If they didn't believe in what had happened to Christ, we would expect at least some of them to have run or abandoned the faith as soon as there was time of hardship. We can disagree on whether WE believe in a risen Christ, but I'm not sure how a person could argue that the Apostles did not.


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Dragoon wrote:NoDeity

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:
The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. 

Ah, yes.  The Magic Jesus Glasses that enable you to see harmony and unity where people using mere reason and observation see inconsistency and self-contradiction.  My prescription ran out years ago...

 

Perhaps, but which is reality. The 'prescription' didn't come first... it came after. It was reason and observation that led me to try the 'prescription'.

Reason?  Can you give me an example of the reasoning that led you to  it?  (Just one -- pick the one that you think is the best.)

 

Dragoon wrote:
Do you mind if I ask, how did you 'know' you had the Holy Spirit? This isn't a lead in to a slam. I'd just like to know more about who you were and how you saw the world when you were a believer.

Mostly, it was a matter of faith: "ask and ye shall receive".  I prayed sincerely and earnestly, asking for the infilling of the Holy Spirit.  There were signs, such as waves of emotion and babbling in "tongues", but my assurance that the Holy Spirit had come upon me was faith that "my Heavenly Father" would send the helper that was promised in the New Testament.

 

 

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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Dragoon wrote:Dragoon

Dragoon wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

Favourable???? LOL Absolutely not!

I was well off financially, was having fun with friends, women and just 'being me', and then God keeps stepping into the picture and saying, "Wait. I'm real. What are you going to do about it."

Maybe that's how the gospel writers met Jesus as well... challenging them from the safety of their preconceptions and old lives.

So you had no experience with God in your life and yet God decided to introduce himself to you without you seeking him?

Forgive me for letting you know that rings very false.

As for the writers, it was less of a challenge for them and more of them trying to sell a religion.

Dragoon wrote:
Please read the message over again. I didn't say 'no experience', just nothing that was easily classed as "something favorable happen." I'd hope something I didn't say would ring false Eye-wink

 

I'm not sure how you quantify the gospel writers as trying to 'sell a religion'. They didn't found a new religion, to them they were still Jews, and Jesus was the promised Messiach. They certainly believed the message that Christ gave them, and believed quite strongly that he had truly risen from the dead.

The author of Luke, according to the New Testament, may have been Greek (i.e. not a Jew).

 

Dragoon wrote:
Seriously... you have

1) simple people

Luke is supposed to have been a doctor.  However, the authorship of the gospels is unknown so any claim about the nature of the authors of those four books is speculation.  Further to that, since we cannot say who the authors were, those authors cannot reasonably be described as eye witnesses.

 

Dragoon wrote:
2) their leader has just been arrested and crucified

The gospels were written decades after those events are supposed to have occurred, so it is not true that their leader had just been arrested and crucified.  

 

Dragoon wrote:
They should have faded away, been discouraged, and fallen apart. Instead;

1) their numbers grow rapidly

2) they spread throughout the region and later the world

Largely through the work of one man who shaped the new religion: Paul.  Paul, by the way, was well-educated (i.e. not a simple man).

 

Dragoon wrote:
3) they endure hardship and eventual painful deaths

Lots of religions have martyrs.

 

Dragoon wrote:
4) they write accounts of Jesus resurrection which, if false would have been easy for contemporaries to attack

Isn't it funny that there are absolutely no historical accounts of the dramatic events of the resurrection that were written at the time it supposedly occurred?

 

Dragoon wrote:
I'm not sure how you quantify "less of a challenge for them." If they didn't believe in what had happened to Christ, we would expect at least some of them to have run or abandoned the faith as soon as there was time of hardship. We can disagree on whether WE believe in a risen Christ, but I'm not sure how a person could argue that the Apostles did not.

Again, lots of religions have martyrs.

Reality is the graveyard of the gods.


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Dragoon wrote:I'm not sure

Dragoon wrote:

I'm not sure how you quantify the gospel writers as trying to 'sell a religion'. They didn't found a new religion, to them they were still Jews, and Jesus was the promised Messiach. They certainly believed the message that Christ gave them, and believed quite strongly that he had truly risen from the dead.

 

Seriously... you have

1) simple people

2) their leader has just been arrested and crucified

They should have faded away, been discouraged, and fallen apart. Instead;

1) their numbers grow rapidly

2) they spread throughout the region and later the world

3) they endure hardship and eventual painful deaths

4) they write accounts of Jesus resurrection which, if false would have been easy for contemporaries to attack

I'm not sure how you quantify "less of a challenge for them." If they didn't believe in what had happened to Christ, we would expect at least some of them to have run or abandoned the faith as soon as there was time of hardship. We can disagree on whether WE believe in a risen Christ, but I'm not sure how a person could argue that the Apostles did not.

Or (as his works were written prior to the gospels) they were trying to provide a back story and a "human" face to the religion that Paul of Tarsus created.

None of the gospel writers were eyewitnesses to the events they wrote on. They grafted Jesus into the messianic prophecies (poorly) to try and convince the Jews that Messiah had come.

I never argued that they didn't believe in what they were selling - I only said that they were selling a product. It's good to believe in your product - it makes it easier for people to buy it.

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


Fonzie
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WRECKING YOUR BICYCLE

 

JcGadfly, et all-

We are seeing the multiplication of laws with the purpose of regulating behavior to the extent that before long if not even now we will all be conscious that in the eyes of our self-appointed royalty we will all be law breakers.  How's it working?  It's not.  It's the same with putting your trust in your own personal laws, moral standards.

Why is the Devil promoting legalism?  He wants it to be all it can be - the worst possible experience which it is such that we would give up and never get up to speed walking by faith, never taste the heavenly gift, fellowship with God and Christ, and the power of the Holy Spirit.  The flame is fragile and you don't hold it up to the log - but it's God's flame and He cares for it.  Legalism throws water on it.  Legalism is a rock in your shoe and if the Devil can get the smallest legalism rock in our shoe it will irritate and annoy us.

But what would you call a man who gets up to speed, tastes the heavenly gift, walking by faith in fellowship with God and Jesus, who feels the power of the Holy Spirit and overcoming sin and maintaining the corrupt heart always producing weeds, maintaining conscience, being on guard against pride, insincerity, unbelief, foolish pursuits - if he is up to speed walking by faith in the grace of God, regenerated, walking in the light and then turns back into legalism?  We don't have to call him a fool because the Holy Spirit through Paul does it.  "Are we so foolish"? Yes is the answer, we are so foolish and the sooner we realize it we can be on guard against it. 

Or we could end up in the position of Cain (not mastering sin rather sin mastering him), or Esau (selling out for a bowl of soup), or those on this forum who say they were once up to speed (whether they were or not I don't know, God knows) and now are spokesmen for the grieving Savior and the laughing Devil.

 

 


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Fonzie wrote: JcGadfly, et

Fonzie wrote:

 

JcGadfly, et all-

We are seeing the multiplication of laws with the purpose of regulating behavior to the extent that before long if not even now we will all be conscious that in the eyes of our self-appointed royalty we will all be law breakers.  How's it working?  It's not.  It's the same with putting your trust in your own personal laws, moral standards.

Why is the Devil promoting legalism?  He wants it to be all it can be - the worst possible experience which it is such that we would give up and never get up to speed walking by faith, never taste the heavenly gift, fellowship with God and Christ, and the power of the Holy Spirit.  The flame is fragile and you don't hold it up to the log - but it's God's flame and He cares for it.  Legalism throws water on it.  Legalism is a rock in your shoe and if the Devil can get the smallest legalism rock in our shoe it will irritate and annoy us.

But what would you call a man who gets up to speed, tastes the heavenly gift, walking by faith in fellowship with God and Jesus, who feels the power of the Holy Spirit and overcoming sin and maintaining the corrupt heart always producing weeds, maintaining conscience, being on guard against pride, insincerity, unbelief, foolish pursuits - if he is up to speed walking by faith in the grace of God, regenerated, walking in the light and then turns back into legalism?  We don't have to call him a fool because the Holy Spirit through Paul does it.  "Are we so foolish"? Yes is the answer, we are so foolish and the sooner we realize it we can be on guard against it. 

Or we could end up in the position of Cain (not mastering sin rather sin mastering him), or Esau (selling out for a bowl of soup), or those on this forum who say they were once up to speed (whether they were or not I don't know, God knows) and now are spokesmen for the grieving Savior and the laughing Devil.

 

 

Ah, Paulism.

You don't like the laws of God and man so you add a law that says you don't have to follow them.

Following laws is not legalism - letting them rule you is. Not following the laws because you have a magic grace shield isn't really a solution.

What would I call the guy you describe? The same thing Paul calls him "under grace not under law" and he has "no transgression". The only difference is that the guy you describe actually wants to follow God's laws and the laws of a fruitful society. The guy you lionize and are striving to be like doesn't care about things like that because all he has to do is believe really, really hard and the God whose laws he ignores will still save him.

You bring up Cain, who didn't know what the sacrifice rules were because God didn't bother telling them to him. God sure does like causing anger, huh?

You decry Esau and glorify Jacob, the con artist who took advantage of a vulnerability. Yep, God loves fraud, too.

How can an atheist be a spokesperson for either the grieving Jesus or the grinning Devil when they believe in neither?

The better question for you to answer is "Why do you claim to believe in a God whose laws you feel that you are allowed to break with impunity?"

"I do this real moron thing, and it's called thinking. And apparently I'm not a very good American because I like to form my own opinions."
— George Carlin


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jcgadfly wrote:Or (as his

jcgadfly wrote:

Or (as his works were written prior to the gospels) they were trying to provide a back story and a "human" face to the religion that Paul of Tarsus created.

None of the gospel writers were eyewitnesses to the events they wrote on. They grafted Jesus into the messianic prophecies (poorly) to try and convince the Jews that Messiah had come.

I never argued that they didn't believe in what they were selling - I only said that they were selling a product. It's good to believe in your product - it makes it easier for people to buy it.

Hi JC,

Why do you think they were not eye-witnesses to the events covered in the gospels?

 

Did Saul/Paul 'create' a religion? There are those who seek to portray the teachings of Paul as contrary to those of Jesus, but I don't see this at all. Peter writes that 'our Lord's patience means salvation, just as our dear brother Paul also wrote to you with the wisdom that God gave him. He writes the same way in all his letters, speaking in them of these matters. His letters contain some things that are hard to understand, which ignorant and unstable people distort, as they do other Scriptures, to their own destruction.' (2Pe3:15-16)

Why in the world would the early followers of Christ seek to do anything to help Paul/Saul? He hunted them down and persecuted them.

 

If the Apostles believed that Jesus was the Messiah, then they would not have followed any religion that 'Paul created'. If the Apostles did not believe that Jesus was the Christ, then they would have no reason to 'sell' or die for His name.

We can't have it both ways.

 

I think the scenario that best fits the evidence is that the Apostles did fully believe that Jesus was the Christ, and that he was raised from the dead. Whether we believe that though, or in Jesus as God's perfect sacrifice because of His love for us.... that's a decision we have to make on our own.


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NoDeity wrote:Dragoon

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:

NoDeity wrote:

Dragoon wrote:
The reliability of the Bible comes from God... from its being read under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. 

Ah, yes.  The Magic Jesus Glasses that enable you to see harmony and unity where people using mere reason and observation see inconsistency and self-contradiction.  My prescription ran out years ago...

 

Perhaps, but which is reality. The 'prescription' didn't come first... it came after. It was reason and observation that led me to try the 'prescription'.

Reason?  Can you give me an example of the reasoning that led you to  it?  (Just one -- pick the one that you think is the best.)

 

Dragoon wrote:
Do you mind if I ask, how did you 'know' you had the Holy Spirit? This isn't a lead in to a slam. I'd just like to know more about who you were and how you saw the world when you were a believer.

Mostly, it was a matter of faith: "ask and ye shall receive".  I prayed sincerely and earnestly, asking for the infilling of the Holy Spirit.  There were signs, such as waves of emotion and babbling in "tongues", but my assurance that the Holy Spirit had come upon me was faith that "my Heavenly Father" would send the helper that was promised in the New Testament.

 

 

If you belonged to Christ, then I have perfect faith as well that you will return to him. The Spirit is merely God's seal upon us, guaranteeing what is to come (2Co1:22, Eph 4:30).