Questions about God... theists answer these!

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Questions about God... theists answer these!

List of questions about God, religion and the supernatural have been compiled by IG over the years as well as some interesting ones by readers.

1. If Jesus fulfilled all the OT prophecies so well, why didn't the Jews recognize him as the messiah? - Francois Tremblay

2. If Gen 3:24 is true, why hasn't anyone found the Cherubims and the " flaming sword which turned every way"?

3. It's been proven that modern humans originated from Africa. Yet, the Adam and Eve story claims the first Humans lived in a garden in Eden, near 4 rivers. ( Most of which no one can find). One of these rivers mentioned is the Euphrates, which runs through Iraq, Syria and a portion of Turkey. What's the truth? Did man come out of Africa or near the Euphrates River? - The Infidel Guy

4. When the believer gets to Heaven, how can Heaven be utter bliss when people they love and care about are burning in Hell ? - The Infidel Guy - [Note: Some say God erases your memories of them, but if God erases your memory, you as Mr. Joe /Jane Smoe ceases to exist.]

5. How can a God have emotions, i.e. jealousy, anger, sadness, love, etc., if he is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent? Emotional states are reactionary for the most part. How can God react to us if he is all-knowing and has a divine plan? - IG [Note: Indeed, many religious texts display their gods this way . Listen to the An Emotional Godshow.]
6. Why would God create a place such as hell to torture sinners forever when he foreknew who would disappoint him? - IG [Note: Some say you have a choice, but this misses the point. If God hates sin so much, why create Adam and Eve when he knew they'd sin? The only conclusion I can come up with, if Yaweh exists, is that he wanted sin to enter the world.]

7. "God is all merciful," we hear quite often. Wouldn't it be more merciful of God to simply snap sinners out of existence rather than send them to hell? Or better yet, since he's all-knowing, not allow them to be born at all? - IG
ON GOD'S LOVE & HELL
1.) God's love is superlative.
2.) God's love of man exceeds man's love of self.
3.) Man's love of self prohibits torture.
4.) Considering God's greater love for us, Hell (eternal torture) is illogical.

8. Muslims are supposed to pray 5 times a day towards Mecca. Each prayer includes a variety of ritualism and posturing. If a muslim astronaut were to land on Mars. Prayer to Mecca would be ritualistically impossible due to the rotation of Earth and Mars. Are Muslims stuck here in Earth? IG [Note: Since this was first posted, a Muslim astronaut was faced with this very dilemma. The authoritative clergy informed him to pray as he normally would. I see this no where in the Koran. You see? Religions must change, or die out. It's interesting to note that, in the Koran, the moon is believed to be in the lowest Heaven, the level for those that barely made it to Heaven. Surah 71:15-16. One problem, no man can supposedly get to Heaven until they die. Yet, we've been to the moon. Our satellites beyond that.]

9. Why haven't we seen God reattach severed heads, restore someone who was burned alive or regrow amputated limbs? Surely these would be miracles difficult to deny. - Adam Majors and IG [Note: The typical answer is that man doesn't dictate God's actions. The conundrum here however is that, if God wants us to "know" him, then surely feats such as those mentioned above would be happening all over the world. Until they do, I'll remain an atheist.]

10. Why does God entrust the spreading of 'His' word to sinners? Why doesn't he do it himself? - IG [Note: Surely God would have known that not everyone would be convinced by the reality[sic] of his Bible. If God loves us so much, we are all going to Heaven. If God knew that I would be an atheist, and he doesn't like atheists, he shouldn't have allowed me to come into existence. But he did. Therefore, I must be serving the will of God, for I exist. Smiling]

11. In II Kings 2-23/24 we read about God sending 2 she-bears to attack children for calling the prophet Elisa bald, which he was, the bears killed 42 of the children. Was this a good thing to do? -- Brandon and IG[Note: I have heard some argue that the boys were a gang. So?! I didn't read anywhere in that passage where they laid a finger on the guy . Also, what kind of bears are these that can kill 42 kids? Super Bears? Surely the kids had to be running away.]

12. I have often heard from many believers that even Satan has a presence in the church, which is why even in church people can still have impure thoughts. If Satan can find his way in the church, how do Christians know that Satan didn't find his way into the Bible and twist the whole book? After all, men did vote on which books would make the Holy Bible. - The Infidel Guy

13. Why did God allow Lot and his daughters to escape from Sodom and Gomorra when he destroyed it only to later have Lot and his daughters engage in incestuous fornication. (Genesis 19:30-36) - Disillusioned [Note: To have intercourse with daddy dearest of course.]

14. Genesis 1:28-29 shows that man and all the animals were first created herbivorous. Most young-earth Christians (ones that believes the earth is less than 10,000 years old) say that the fall of man resulted in carnivorous animals ( hence death of animals). So, why did God punish the animal kingdom, making animals kill and devour each other because of man's mistake? Or, if you're an old-earth Christian (one that accepts that animals existed on earth for billions of years before man came on the scene) then how come fossils show carnivorous animals existed before man? - http://www.caseagainstfaith.com/contact.htm.

15. Many Christians believe that God is a thinking being, that he solves problems and makes a way for them when troubles come. Does God Think? If God is thinking, did he know his thoughts before he thought them? If so, again, where is his freewill and how is God thinking at all if everything seems to be one uncontrollable action/thoughts. - The Infidel Guy [Note: I'd say a God cannot think at all. To do so, would strip him of omniscience. Thinking is a temporal process.] ON GOD'S ATEMPORALITY
1.) God, an atemporal being, created the Universe.
2.) Creation is a temporal processes because X cannot cause Y to come into being unless X existed temporally prior to Y.
3.) If God existed prior to the creation of the Universe he is a temporal being.
4.) Since God is atemporal, God cannot be the creator the Universe.
[Note: I guess I should also note here that a timeless being would be without the proposition of past, and future. But to be omniscient, God must know the past and future. Hence a God that is atemporal and omniscient cannot logically exist. Smiling]

16. I have often heard that faith is all that is neccessary to believe in God and accept the Bible as true. If this is true aren't all supernatural beliefs true since they also require "faith"? - IG ON FAITH
1.) A prerequisite to believe in a Faith is faith.
2.) Having faith is all that is required to accept a Faith (belief) as true.
3.) All Faiths are true.
[Note: Of course all Faiths aren`t true, but this is the only logical conclusion that can be drawn from a person that states that, "Faith" is how one knows God.]

17. Why didn't God just kill Adam and Eve after the Fall and start from scratch? Actually, if God is all-knowing wouldn't he know that man would need to be killed eventually anyway, (the biblical flood)? Why create Adam and Eve at all? - and ON THE GARDEN OF EDEN
1.) God is omniscient (all-knowing).
2.) God knew that before he created man that they would eat of the tree of knowledge.
3.) God placed the tree of knowledge in the Garden anyway.
4.) God wanted sin to enter the world.
[Note: If God didn`t want sin to enter the world, why create Adam and Eve at all? He knew what would happen. Why place the forbidden trees in the Garden in the first place?]

18. If a spirit is non-physical but the human body is physical, how does a spirit stay in our bodies? - IG ON SPIRITS
1.) Spirits are not physical entities.
2.) Brains are physical entities.
3.) Past experiences are stored in our physical brains, we call that, Memory..
4.) Injury can damage portions of the physical brain that store memory and can alter or erase memories completely.
5.) If human spirits exist... after death, spirits can have no memory.
[Note: Some will say the spirit stores physical memories as well, but if true, the spirit would have to be physical at least to a degree. How could a non-physical spirit store, physical memories?]

19. Does God know his own future decisions? If God is all-knowing he actually shouldn't have any decisions to make at all. Nor can he choose anything over something else. For that would mean that he is neither omniscient nor omnipotent. In fact, he can't even think if this is the case. Since he can't DO anything, he might as well not exist. - IG ON GOD'S IMMUTABILITY - Unchangingness
1. If God exists, then he is immutable.
2. If God exists, then he is the creator of the universe.
3. An immutable being cannot at one time have an intention and then at a later time not have that intention.
4. For any being to create anything, prior to the creation he must have had the intention to create it, but at a later time, after the creation, no longer have the intention to create it.
5. Thus, it is impossible for an immutable being to have created anything (from 3 and 4).
6. Therefore, it is impossible for God to exist (from 1, 2, and 5) - Theodore M. Drange

20. If God is all-knowing, how could he be disappointed in His creation? -- [Note: Indeed, wouldn't God know that before the creation of our Universe what creatures would disappoint him? That being the case why create those creatures at all? Also, in knowing absolutely the behavior of humans before creation, God cannot be disappointed either... for this world is exactly as he has planned it to be. If it's not, why create us at all?]

21. God struck down the Tower of Babel angry at the intent of the people that built them, if this is the case, many of the great pyramids ( which are bigger than any ziggurat) around the world should be rubble also, yet many still stand today. Were not the Egyptians and many other ancient pyramid builders reaching toward God /The Heavens? - IG [Note: In actuality, many of the Pharaoh's believed that, via their pyramids, they would become God's themselves.]

22. In the watchmaker analogy, a watch is used to show us intelligent design and compares that to the Universe as evidence of design. We know watches are designed because we have past experience with watches, as well as with other man made objects. My question is: What Universe is the Intelligent Design proponent using to compare this Universe with to draw such an analogy? What God did he see create a Universe? - IG

23. Why did God flood the earth to remove evil? It didn't work! Evil came right back, God should have known that would happen! So why did He bother? - PhineasBg [Note: A good example of how quickly sin returned, was Noah getting drunk just after they discovered land.]

24. If the garden of Eden was a perfect paradise as xians claim, then why did Eve even want to eat the fruit? Wouldn't a perfect place provide everything a person would want or desire and thus she would want nothing? - keyser soze [Note: Why were the trees there in the first place? Of course they love to throw the serpent into the equation. But ummm..who let the serpent into the Garden?... and why would God create such a creature knowing he would cause man's fall? Hmm.. God must have wanted the fall to happen.]

25. Why would an all-powerful god become flesh in order to sacrifice himself to himself so that his creation might escape the wrath of himself. Couldn't god, in his infinite wisdom, come up with something a little more efficient? - ON THE BODY OF CHRIST
1.) God?s flesh was known as Jesus.
2.) Flesh cannot enter into Heaven (according to Paul)
3.) God is no longer Jesus.
4.) Jesus doesn?t exist.

(Note: Many at this point will state that the spirit lives on so therefore Jesus lives. This really depends on what you believe about Jesus. Is Jesus the son of God or God in flesh? If Jesus is merely the son there is no problem.However, if Jesus ?is? God himself, we do. You see, Jesus is called Jesus because of the attribute of Flesh. If Jesus = God (who is spirit) then the entity known as Jesus ceases to exist. The flesh/body of Jesus, no longer exists and the spirit of God is still the unchanging spirit of God. No Jesus at that point. The Flesh, called Jesus, is dead.)

26. After 9/11 a lot of people have been tossing around " god bless america". Why do they keep saying this? From the looks of it god hasn't blessed anything. If god had blessed america, the 9/11 event would've never happened. Theists seem to give the answer of "everything is part of gods big plan". If everything is part of gods big plan, why are we after Bin Laden? Wasn't he and other terrorists just carrying out gods desired plan? So it seems that Bin Laden/ terrorism isnt our enemy, but god . - [Note: Unfortunately many religious nuts believe they are fulfilling their God's plan by going to war.]

27. Christians say that God is NOT the author of confusion. Can you say, Tower of Babel? - The Screaming Monkeys

28. If Noah's flood supposedly covered the earth for a year, regardless of whether or not all the animals could fit on the ark, what the heck happened to all the plants? Can you imagine a cactus surviving under 4 miles of water for a year? I can't either! - Kyle Giblet [Note: With God all things are possible. Oh wait, except in Judges 1:19.]

29. The highest rainfall ever recorded in a 24 hour period was 47inches in the Reunion Islands in 1947 (during a severe tropical storm). To cover the whole earth to a depth of 5.6 miles, and cover the mountain tops (i.e. Mount Everest), it would need to rain at a rate of 372 (three hundred and seventy two) inches per hour, over the entire surface of the earth. Can rain fall at such an astronomical rate? Where did all the water come from?? Where did it all go to??? And would not the dynamics of the earth be so out of balance (tides etc.) that the earth would become so unstable that it would wobble off into outer space???? -

30. What do Muslim women get in Paradise? - IG [Note: Some Muslims I have interviewed about this say that Muslim women will get the same thing men get or equal value. Smiling Oh really? So Muslim women will get 72 virgin men? lol. If Muslim men get 72 virgins, where are all these virgin women coming from? What of their freewill? Is Allah creating these women to be slaves to the men in Paradise?]

31. In the "Last Days" Jesus is supposed to appear in the clouds. How are the Christians on the opposite end of the world going to see him? Are there going to be millions of Jesus'? What about people that work underground? What about people in deep space? -

32. The Bible says that God is a jealous God . How is this an example of a moral absolute of which man is supposed to follow? - IG ON GOD`S JEALOUSY
1.) "God is love." 1 John 4:8.
2.) "Love is not jealous." 1 Cor 13:4
3.) "I, the Lord thy God, am a jealous God." Exodus 20:5.
4.) The Christian god cannot logically exist.
(NOte: Basically love is NOT jealous, yet god is jealous, then God can`t be love. But if god IS love he cannot be jealous. Be he is.)

33. A true Muslim man is not supposed to do anything that the prophet Muhammad didn't do. If one remembers there was a big debate over whether or not Muslims should eat Mangos. If this is true, why in the Hell were these Islamic Fundamentalists flying airplanes? - IG

34. If the earth was covered by a complete global flood, every living creature killed except those surviving on the ark, why are there many completely unique animal species in Australia that are found no where else indigenously on the earth? -

35. If god is omniscient and " god is love," why would he allow a child to be conceived, knowing that that child would one day reject him and spend eternity burning in a lake of fire?- TiredTurkeyProd

36. Revelations is supposed to take place on Earth. What if we colonize the moon or Mars or inhabit a self-sustaining space station? Do we escape "judgement"? -- Ray Sommers [Note: No we don't Ray... and of course we all know that if there is any intelligent life out there besides us, they are all going to Hell too. Eye-wink]

37. Isaiah 40:28 says, "...the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is he weary?" If this is true, why did God rest on the seventh day?- IG

38. Everytime I go to a funeral the preacher and guests always say that " God " has called that person to Heaven or they say, " God said it was time to come home", or some such variation. If God is calling these people "home", why are we putting the murderers of these victims in prison? How can we punish a man or woman for doing God's will? - IG

39. Does God have a gender? In most churches, God is predominately referred to as a "he"? - IG [Note: The Bible says God is male, but what does this mean? Does God have a penis? Does he have hormones that dictate his gender? Smiling]

40. Why can't we wait until we get to Heaven to worship God ? Why would it be too late? - IG

41. What is the purpose of prayer? What can a finite being on Earth possibly tell an omnipotent, omniscient deity that he doesn't know already? - IG ON PRAYER
1.) Humans can?t change God?s mind for he has a divine plan and is unchangeable.
2.) Prayer can't change God's mind.
3.) Prayer doesn't change anything.
(Prayer may make you feel better emotionally, but it doesn`t change God`s mind.)

42. Some say Jesus was the all-knowing God. Jesus would have known then that when he died he'd be in heaven in less than 3 days to rule. If Jesus is alive and ruling today, what did he sacrifice? -- Cyndy Hammond

43. God knows that men are sinners, untrustworthy and evil, why does God leave it up to fallible man (clergy..etc) to teach others about his word? Why would he put our eternal souls at risk if he loves us so much? - The Infidel Guy and Danno778

44. Did Adam have nipples? If so, how did he acquire them? In fact, why would God give "later man" nipples at all? They serve no purpose other than lactation. Some say pleasure. Where is that in Genesis exactly? All mammals have nipples as well, are theirs pleasureful for them too? Many men don't find their nipples pleasurable at all. - IG

45. How did Adam and Eve know it was wrong to disobey God if they hadn't eaten of the tree of knowledge (of good and evil) yet? You can't blame them if they didn't know. - IG

46. If God has such a tremendous problem with uncircumcised penises, why did he make man with foreskin in the first place? - IG [Note: Some say, "So God can recognize his chosen people." Recognize? Is God so stupid that he has to physically look at men's penises? If not God, do other men need to? lol.]

47. Did Noah have fish onboard? Salt or Fresh? Since fresh water fish would die in salt, and salt water fish would die in fresh, only one type of fish would survive. Yet....?" - Frank Monaco

48. Why does the omnipotent, omnipresent God need help from man or angels to spread his word or do acts? - IG [Note: Some say God doesn't need help. But apparently he does.] - IG

49. How did Jesus ascend to Heaven in the Flesh when Paul says that flesh cannot inherit the kingdom of Heaven? (1 Cor.15:50) - IG [Note: Some say, well Paul said that and not Jesus. Yet they quote Paul when it suits there purposes.]

50. If God wants us to live right and choose "the good," why did he create evil? (Isaiah 45:6,7) Not to mention he already knows which people are not going to choose "the good" so why create those people in the first place? It seems that many people are born to go to Hell. - IG ON HELL
1.) God is all-knowing.
2.) Before I was born God knew I wouldn?t believe in him.
3.) I was born to go to Hell.
(Sure you may say I have a choice, but I think I`ve proven already that I really don`t. I`m simply fulfilling the will of God by being an atheist aren`t I? If I`m not, I shouldn`t exist: For God would have known that before I was created that I wouldn`t believe in him.)

51. I hear Christians all the time speaking of a spiritual war between Heaven and Hell, if this is true does God have limitations of power? Man only conducts wars because of our limitations of power and foresight. God has both all-power and all-knowledge, no reason for war of any kind. - IG

52. The Bible is full of phrases beginning with, "and the lord saw". Didn't he know before hand? - IG

53. How can a psychologist condone belief in something not proven to exist, when people are put into mental institutions on a daily basis for the same thing? i.e. aliens, fairies, imaginary people (Multiple Personality Disorders..)? - Dan Denton [Note: I'm sure that some of the pious believe that they are improperly placed there as well Dan. Smiling]

54. If Christians say they know God exists and that he will work miracles, what do they need faith for? Faith is not knowing. - IG

55. Brain, or shall I say, body transplants, will eventually be possible, where would the soul be then? Where is the soul? - IG

56. If God really wants us to know him, why doesn't he place the knowledge of him in our minds at birth? The same way many theists believe that God implants our sense of right and wrong in us a right birth. - IG

57. If God was Jesus' father (not Joseph), then why is Jesus' family tree traced through Joseph? -- Cyndy Hammond

58. What image of God was man made from? Couldn't have been a moral one or physical one. - IG [Note: One would suspect that an image of God would be perfect and cannot sin. Oops.]

59. Why can't God appear before everyone at the same time? Everyone in the world would then "know" he exists and not have solely "believe". And please, don't say he already tried that. Surely a God knows exactly what to do to convince a measly human of his existence. - IG

60. According to the New Testament Matthew 5:17 says "Do not suppose that I have come to abolish the Law and the prophets; I did not come to abolish, but to complete. I tell you this: so long as heaven and earth endure, not a letter, not a stroke, will disappear from the Law until all that must happen has Happened." So since Jesus has not returned the "Law" is still in effect, so why aren't we still burning witches, stoning adulterers and disobedient children, killing homosexuals, ostracizing people that work on the Sabbath (nurses, doctors etc.), flinging blood onto the horns of the alter, pulling off the heads of small birds, and don't forget human sacrifice to God (Leviticus 27 P.28 )? -- Sheila L. Chambers

61. If there is freewill in Heaven yet everyone has chosen good and is happy, isn't that proof that God could have made us with freewill, choosing good ( God ) and still being happy on Earth? - Dennis Hendrix [Note: In other words, evil didn't have to exist after all. Hey wait, even in Heaven apparently, evil can exist. At least for a short while. Satan became evil and was in heaven. Apparently he even had enough time to form an Army against God. Wow. Maybe Heaven won't be as peaceful as many believe.]

62. Why does God have a plan? Man is limited in power so we make plans because we are not all-knowing nor all-powerful. If God has a plan, isn't he reduced to a mere finite being? - IG

63. How could the all-merciful/loving God watch billions of his children burn over and over again for eternity? - IG [Note: Of course this is geared to those that believe in a fiery hell. I am well aware that not all Christians believe in a fiery Hell.]

64. Before reading and writing were invented (5000BC), on what basis did God use to judge the people who died before the Hebrew and Greek text (BIBLE) were written? -- [Note: They are all roasting in Hell. Smiling]

65. Many Christians tell me that I will "burn in hell". If I have a soul, how can a soul burn? Aren't souls non-physical entities? - IG [Note: Some Christians groups believe that you will be given new bodies after judgement. However, if true, what's the significance of a spirit in the first place?]

66. How can one hold to the barbaric belief that something has to DIE in order to appease a god for a bad deed? -- Nickolaus Wing [Note: Because an old book says so Nick.]

67. Why does SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) occur? Why would God allow a baby to live for such a short period of time? Why not just let them not be born in the first place? -- Terry Clark [Note: This actually happened to a friend of mine. Not even God himself could console her.]

68. If Jesus was nailed and died on Friday evening, and walked out of the tomb on Sunday morning, where's the 3rd NIGHT he predicted? Per Matthew 12:40: For as Jonas was three days and three nights in the whale's belly; so shall the Son of man be three days and three nights in the heart of the earth. -

69. Many Christians claim that hell is merely existence outside of God ?s presence (C.S. Lewis among others). If this is the case, then Jesus could not have descended into hell (being God Himself). As a result, are you sure your sins are forgiven? - Byron Bultsma

70. Ten to twenty percent of all women who discover they are pregnant suffer a miscarriage. Also, it is estimated that anywhere from 14 to 50 percent of all pregnancies end in miscarriage. Seeing this is all part of God 's plan, does this make God the world's number one abortion provider? - Jim

71. What if, when you get to Heaven, you saw God causing pain and suffering out of anger or for the purpose of entertaining himself. What if he required people in heaven to praise and worship him non-stop even to the point of causing his worshipers discomfort, pain and boredom. What if, when he was bored, angry, or jealous, he would create natural disasters to make himself feel better. Would you still follow him? - Fernando [Note: Of course they would Fernando, many people followed Hitler out of fear as well.]

72. In Leviticus, the bible condemns homosexuality as an "abomination", giving some Christians a reason to hate, harass, torture and kill gays and even picket their funderals with " God hates fags" signs. In the same book of the bible the eating of shellfish is equally an "abomination". Are these Christians planning to go after the patrons of Red Lobster next? - [Note: hee-hee, that's all I can say. Jewish Law states that eating Fish without scales is an abomination and thus the Shark is one among the list. However, sharks do have scales, Placoid scales, one of the many reasons why a shark is called a Fish .]

73. Christians will tell you that if a baby dies it goes to heaven. Why then are they so against abortion? All the child is being deprived of is the opportunity to go to hell. Either that or god expects unborn fetuses to accept Jesus. -

74. If one could prove to you incontrovertibly that Jesus and God were all human fabrications would still believe? And why? - LOGICnREASON [Note: If you say yes. Then you are not concerned with the truth, you simply WANT to believe; and if you WANT to believe, indeed, there is nothing anyone can tell you..]

75. It is often said that God allows evil because one could not meaningfully appreciate good without experiencing its opposite. Why is it necessary to experience the opposite of something in order to appreciate it? Must I experience death in order to meaningfully appreciate life? -excidius

76. Bible literalists want you to believe that God's Word in the Bible is meant to be taken literally. If this is the case, why was Jesus fond of explaining things in parable and metaphor? Was Jesus literally discussing the biology of mustard seeds, or was the mustard seed parable meant to be interpreted figuratively as faith? -excidius

77. Liberal Christians say some parts of the Bible are literally true, but much else is to be interpreted figuratively as allegory. How do you know which is which? What distinguishing criteria are used? How can you be certain "God" is a literal and not a figurative concept? -excidius

78. Consciousness is the result of a physical brain, how could God being metaphysical be said to be conscious or sentient without having a brain? - Mindless

79. Considering how Leviticus is considered old law, and that Christians do not obey it anymore, why do they always use it to defend homosexuality being an "abomination"? -Bohorquez

80. If God is omnipotent and he has a plan ... then why did he not create the universe as it will be one second after the plan has succeeded? Who or what prevented him from doing that? - Timothy Campbell (http://www.tc123.com)

81. The large majority of people who have ever existed could not have learned of the Bible or Jesus Christ. And many people afterwards have found other religions or no religion at all to be more convincing, sometimes while being very virtuous. Do all these people really deserve eternal torment because of that? -- lpetrich

82. The above arguments also apply among different sects of Christianity, many of which state that most others are not True Christianity. -- lpetrich

83. Is it reasonable for the Creator and Ruler of such a vast Universe to be preoccupied with the sexuality of a species living on a tiny little planet? -- lpetrich

84. If the Christian god was all loving and all knowing why did he let religious figures such as Mohammed or Gautama Budda be born, knowing that they would mislead people from the 'true' faith and trick the majority of the world's population into burning forever in hell (in fact, if Islam didn't start, most of the middle east would probably be Christian). It would simple to use the Holy Spirit to guide them to Jesus and spread the 'true' faith. If the Holy Spirit exits, it certainly isn't doing it's job!

85. If one is obliged to follow all the teachings of the bible then why is engaging in homosexuality or adultery any worse than "suffering a witch to live", "muzzling the ox that treadeth the corn", "reaping the corners of thy field", "marring the corners of they beard", "plowing with an oxen and an ass", "hating thy brother in thy heart" or "eating frogs, shellfish and eels" ?

86. Exactly how did the alleged worldwide flood kill off all the world's sea creatures? How does one go about drowning a fish? -- Steever

87. Why did this alleged god create humans as an animal form of life that gets sick and dies and experiences pain and has a limited mind when 'it' could have created humans as a form of pure energy or of some indestructible material or whatever, and was totally ?sinless? and had ?pure? thought? If a god was omnipotent 'it' could have easily have done this. --AI

88. If a god is omnipotent how did 'it' fail to foresee that Satan would turn against 'it'? --AI

89. What is a god supposedly made of? --AI

This list was compiled by the Infidel Guy with submissions from many members of the atheist community.

PICK THE QUESTION YOU WANT TO ANSWER, AND POST IT HERE...

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MrPeters
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Sapient

"Read the answer to question number 1, from Omaha Nebraska Community College."

The question on a quiz does not make FACT. Were the quiz makers around 5 million years ago? How about 150,000 years ago? How do they know this for FACT? Acording to science, carbon dating is only acurate for up to 10,000 years. If that is the case, the how does science determine somthing that is 150,000 years old? DNA? Layers of rock? How do you carbon date rock that is over 10,000 years old?

Im so glad you have such great FAITH in science and the makers of a quiz from Omaha Community College.

1. Atheism is

a. blind
b. a religion
c. a belief
d. a cop out
e. all of the above

Logic, Reason, TRUTH


Sapient
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Alright, so I went throug all these questions. I have to wonder what christianity has to do with the existence of God. The concept of God exists seperatly of christianity, not intrinsically.

So what I have done is gone through all your questions and removed any that have to do with the bible, jesus, hell, or christianity in general.

5. How can a God have emotions, i.e. jealousy, anger, sadness, love, etc., if he is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent? Emotional states are reactionary for the most part. How can God react to us if he is all-knowing and has a divine plan? - IG [Note: Indeed, many religious texts display their gods this way . Listen to the An Emotional Godshow.]

An entity is capable of being omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent, and having emotion. Why not? There is no logical basis for this argument. Any entity made of any substance is capble of reacting to something. The laws of the universe revolves around reaction, it is called physics.

15. Many Christians believe that God is a thinking being, that he solves problems and makes a way for them when troubles come. Does God Think? If God is thinking, did he know his thoughts before he thought them? If so, again, where is his freewill and how is God thinking at all if everything seems to be one uncontrollable action/thoughts. - The Infidel Guy [Note: I'd say a God cannot think at all. To do so, would strip him of omniscience. Thinking is a temporal process.] ON GOD'S ATEMPORALITY
1.) God, an atemporal being, created the Universe.
2.) Creation is a temporal processes because X cannot cause Y to come into being unless X existed temporally prior to Y.
3.) If God existed prior to the creation of the Universe he is a temporal being.
4.) Since God is atemporal, God cannot be the creator the Universe.
[Note: I guess I should also note here that a timeless being would be without the proposition of past, and future. But to be omniscient, God must know the past and future. Hence a God that is atemporal and omniscient cannot logically exist.

If god is omnipresent he CANNOT be atemporal, he would exist both temporally, and atemporally, that is why he is God. This argument makes God finite, he either exists there, or exists here, something doesn't have to exist anywhere. Quantum entanglment shows how something can exist both temporally and atemporally.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Quantum_entanglement

18. If a spirit is non-physical but the human body is physical, how does a spirit stay in our bodies? - IG ON SPIRITS
1.) Spirits are not physical entities.
2.) Brains are physical entities.
3.) Past experiences are stored in our physical brains, we call that, Memory..
4.) Injury can damage portions of the physical brain that store memory and can alter or erase memories completely.
5.) If human spirits exist... after death, spirits can have no memory.
[Note: Some will say the spirit stores physical memories as well, but if true, the spirit would have to be physical at least to a degree. How could a non-physical spirit store, physical memories?]

Actually, neurologists have shown that the human body is more like a "computer of flesh" that is operated seperate of the actual body.I am not Jewish, but here is a really good article on this subject:
http://www.simpletoremember.com/vitals/Neurology-and-The-Soul.htm
It has footnotes for everything referenced.

You are correct however, upon death a spirit would not retain its memories, however, "spirits" exist seperate of the physical world, so maintaining fleeting human memories would be superfluous and useless.

19. Does God know his own future decisions? If God is all-knowing he actually shouldn't have any decisions to make at all. Nor can he choose anything over something else. For that would mean that he is neither omniscient nor omnipotent. In fact, he can't even think if this is the case. Since he can't DO anything, he might as well not exist. - IG ON

GOD'S IMMUTABILITY - Unchangingness
1. If God exists, then he is immutable.
2. If God exists, then he is the creator of the universe.
3. An immutable being cannot at one time have an intention and then at a later time not have that intention.
4. For any being to create anything, prior to the creation he must have had the intention to create it, but at a later time, after the creation, no longer have the intention to create it.
5. Thus, it is impossible for an immutable being to have created anything (from 3 and 4).
6. Therefore, it is impossible for God to exist (from 1, 2, and 5) - Theodore M. Drange

God is mutable.

22. In the watchmaker analogy, a watch is used to show us intelligent design and compares that to the Universe as evidence of design. We know watches are designed because we have past experience with watches, as well as with other man made objects. My question is: What Universe is the Intelligent Design proponent using to compare this Universe with to draw such an analogy? What God did he see create a Universe? - IG

God saw himself create it.

26. After 9/11 a lot of people have been tossing around " god bless america". Why do they keep saying this? From the looks of it god hasn't blessed anything. If god had blessed america, the 9/11 event would've never happened. Theists seem to give the answer of "everything is part of gods big plan". If everything is part of gods big plan, why are we after Bin Laden? Wasn't he and other terrorists just carrying out gods desired plan? So it seems that Bin Laden/ terrorism isnt our enemy, but god . - [Note: Unfortunately many religious nuts believe they are fulfilling their God's plan by going to war.]

Can you predict the future? If not, how could you possible know 9/11 was not a blessing. Take this hypothetical situation, a child is killed, and results in one thousand children being saved. The child is not killed, one thousand future children die.

39. Does God have a gender? In most churches, God is predominately referred to as a "he"? - IG [Note: The Bible says God is male, but what does this mean? Does God have a penis? Does he have hormones that dictate his gender?

Gender does not have to be a reference for an entity's genitalia. In many languages, masculinity is a concept for strength/power, not sexual capabilities.

41. What is the purpose of prayer? What can a finite being on Earth possibly tell an omnipotent, omniscient deity that he doesn't know already? - IG ON PRAYER
1.) Humans can?t change God?s mind for he has a divine plan and is unchangeable.
2.) Prayer can't change God's mind.
3.) Prayer doesn't change anything.
(Prayer may make you feel better emotionally, but it doesn`t change God`s mind.)

God can change his divine plan.

53. How can a psychologist condone belief in something not proven to exist, when people are put into mental institutions on a daily basis for the same thing? i.e. aliens, fairies, imaginary people (Multiple Personality Disorders..)? - Dan Denton [Note: I'm sure that some of the pious believe that they are improperly placed there as well Dan. Smiling]

There is a major difference between God, and illusion generated by the mind, the difference is possible tangibility. For instance if the fairy theoretically actually existed, I could reach out and touch it. There can be no -direct- interaction with God in this world.

55. Brain, or shall I say, body transplants, will eventually be possible, where would the soul be then? Where is the soul? - IG

Reference quantum entanglement. The "soul" would remain wherever it is.

56. If God really wants us to know him, why doesn't he place the knowledge of him in our minds at birth? The same way many theists believe that God implants our sense of right and wrong in us a right birth. - IG

We do know God at birth, however "God" in the scope of being a child is our parents. This is divinely inspired since believing in God as child would not be beneficial because they would recognize their true creator and reject their parents.

59. Why can't God appear before everyone at the same time? Everyone in the world would then "know" he exists and not have solely "believe". And please, don't say he already tried that. Surely a God knows exactly what to do to convince a measly human of his existence. - IG

God lives vicariously through us. Why would he want us all knowing what he already knows?

61. If there is freewill in Heaven yet everyone has chosen good and is happy, isn't that proof that God could have made us with freewill, choosing good ( God ) and still being happy on Earth? - Dennis Hendrix [Note: In other words, evil didn't have to exist after all. Hey wait, even in Heaven apparently, evil can exist. At least for a short while.Satan became evil and was in heaven. Apparently he even had enough time to form an Army against God. Wow. Maybe Heaven won't be as peaceful as many believe.]

Without evil, or rather want (which is the root of all evil), we would not have choice.

62. Why does God have a plan? Man is limited in power so we make plans because we are not all-knowing nor all-powerful. If God has a plan, isn't he reduced to a mere finite being? - IG

God has a plan?

67. Why does SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) occur? Why would God allow a baby to live for such a short period of time? Why not just let them not be born in the first place? -- Terry Clark [Note: This actually happened to a friend of mine. Not even God himself could console her.]

Life being unfair is not justification for God not existing.

70. Ten to twenty percent of all women who discover they are pregnant suffer a miscarriage. Also, it is estimated that anywhere from 14 to 50 percent of all pregnancies end in miscarriage. Seeing this is all part of God 's plan, does this make God the world's number one abortion provider? - Jim

What does this have to do with the existence of God? (note: 14 to 50 percent, haha, that is a pretty bad estimate, that is a 36 point spread. What is it 14 or 50 percent?)

75. It is often said that God allows evil because one could not meaningfully appreciate good without experiencing its opposite. Why is it necessary to experience the opposite of something in order to appreciate it? Must I experience death in order to meaningfully appreciate life? -excidius

I agree with you, we don't have to experience evil in order to appreciate good. However, the capability of evil has to exist in order that we can appreciate the good.

78. Consciousness is the result of a physical brain, how could God being metaphysical be said to be conscious or sentient without having a brain? - Mindless

Actually consciousness is the product of the universe. If God doesn't exist, and existence has always existed, the capability to be conscious had to exist even before we reached our current state of evolution. Consiousness as an attribute existed a priori. (note: could a human make an AI that is fully conscious? If not, why not? and if yes, how is God creating us any different?)

80. If God is omnipotent and he has a plan ... then why did he not create the universe as it will be one second after the plan has succeeded? Who or what prevented him from doing that? - Timothy Campbell (http://www.tc123.com)

God has a plan?

83. Is it reasonable for the Creator and Ruler of such a vast Universe to be preoccupied with the sexuality of a species living on a tiny little planet? -- lpetrich

Maybe, I don't know. However, if God is God, then I am sure he capable of dealing with big things as well as trivialities.

So, any more questions?


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dominick_777 wrote: Unless

dominick_777 wrote:
Unless you know for certain there is no God, Gods existence is possible.

First of all, it's a logical fallacy to argue for the existence of anything merely on the basis of inductive uncertainty.

Next, one cannot declare that god's existence is 'possible' just from the fact that one declares a position of agnosticism.

Quote:
Furthermore if you wanna go down the path of trying to defend an absolute negative youll find the existence of God unavoidable, for youd have to know everything to be able to conclude there is no omniscient being. Besides that...

Ah, this tired old error. We make universal negative statements all the time. Logical contradictions are necessarily false.

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The second premise to the question you were dealing with is flawed. God allows people their choice,

Really? Cite where it says so in the bible.

And then explain how belief can be a choice.

Those who know the good, do the good. - Socrates

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Jonathan wrote: An entity is

Jonathan wrote:

An entity is capable of being omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent, and having emotion. Why not? There is no logical basis for this argument. Any entity made of any substance is capble of reacting to something. The laws of the universe revolves around reaction, it is called physics.

the question is in reference to the fact that if god knows everything that will happen, and is responsible for it in advance, then how can he react to it?
if god created physics, how can he be subject to its effects?
Jonathan wrote:

God is mutable.

mutability negates omniscience.

Jonathan wrote:

There is a major difference between God, and illusion generated by the mind, the difference is possible tangibility. For instance if the fairy theoretically actually existed, I could reach out and touch it. There can be no -direct- interaction with God in this world.

explain the impossibility of an intangible god being an illusion generated by the mind.

Jonathan wrote:

We do know God at birth, however "God" in the scope of being a child is our parents. This is divinely inspired since believing in God as child would not be beneficial because they would recognize their true creator and reject their parents.

so what is an appropriate age for children to learn about their true creator? they start 'em pretty early from what i've seen.

Jonathan wrote:

62. Why does God have a plan? Man is limited in power so we make plans because we are not all-knowing nor all-powerful. If God has a plan, isn't he reduced to a mere finite being? - IG

God has a plan?


Jonathan wrote:
God can change his divine plan.

Jonathan wrote:

Life being unfair is not justification for God not existing.

no, it's justification for rejecting the idea of God.

Jonathan wrote:

I agree with you, we don't have to experience evil in order to appreciate good. However, the capability of evil has to exist in order that we can appreciate the good.

this is a total contradiction. simply being conscious of the existence of evil is an experience of it.

Jonathan wrote:

80. If God is omnipotent and he has a plan ... then why did he not create the universe as it will be one second after the plan has succeeded? Who or what prevented him from doing that? - Timothy Campbell (http://www.tc123.com)

God has a plan?


Jonathan wrote:
God can change his divine plan.

you seem to think he does, along with a whole mess of other theists.

Fear is the mindkiller.


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Quote:the question is in

Quote:
the question is in reference to the fact that if god knows everything that will happen, and is responsible for it in advance, then how can he react to it?
if god created physics, how can he be subject to its effects?

Well this is a matter of perception. I can believe God created everything but is now not responsible for what we do. The whole plan, and God is in control of everything is a christian concept, not mine. If anything I see the relationship of God to us a programmer to a program.

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mutability negates omniscience,

How does having complete understanding negate the ability to change?

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explain the impossibility of an intangible god being an illusion generated by the mind.

Intangible does not equal illusion. If something is intangible it is real, if god is intangible he is therefore real, and not an illusion.

Quote:
so what is an appropriate age for children to learn about their true creator? they start 'em pretty early from what i've seen.

At what age they want to believe or not believe in God is non of my concern. I am just exspressing the fact that children do have a sense of a similar concept of God when they are born.

Quote:
no, it's justification for rejecting the idea of God.

Maybe a good justification for rejecting the christian concept of God. People like plans, because they have ends.

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this is a total contradiction. simply being conscious of the existence of evil is an experience of it.

Really, so you being conscious of rape is the same as you getting raped? Yes experience has more then one definition, but to clarify I was using this definition for experience (from webster)

4 : something personally encountered, undergone, or lived through.

Quote:
you seem to think he does, along with a whole mess of other theists.

My sarcasm came off wrong, the "God has a plan?" was negative. Meaning, I don't believe he has a plan. Christians say God has a "plan", if God (creator) has a plan, it probably isn't linear.


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My question:

If heaven is a paradise, I would like to know what exactly one would change about the real world in order for it to qualify as 'paradise'?

Without pain, there exists no joy.

--Louis Repucci


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Actually, there is an

Actually, there is an amazing peace, in the abscence of good and evil. Peace is the opposite of chaos, chaos doesn't have to be evil, so theoretically, peace could be "heaven".

However, "heaven" as portrayed as christians is a place that is essentially earth with gold roads, and probably no religion (hah!).

Humans forget the fact that if an after-life exists, there would be no time, and if time doesn't exist, everything would be different, so contexts are impossible to fathom.


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Response to 89 "Questions About God"

Hi there, folks,

I've posted a response to /forums/sapient/atheist_vs_theist/questions_about_god_theists_answer_these

on my website at http://www.dmitrychernikov.com/rationalqs.htm

Check it out.

Dmitry Chernikov


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Dimity's site

Can someone respond to Dmitry?


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mdf1960 wrote:Can someone

mdf1960 wrote:
Can someone respond to Dmitry?

Personally I'm too busy to spend the appropriate time until at least we're done with the War on Christmas. I didn't even want to spend the time reading all his responses. as I knew I wouldn't have proper time to respond. If anyone wants to start at the beggining (taking a few questions at a time) and analyze what he said, feel free.

Maybe I'll jump in for one or two. I'd love to see Rook or Yellow#5 jump on it.

- Brian Sapient


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Dmitri

So, Dmitri, I have some responses from your webpage. I'd like to know your reactions.

Quote:
It is certainly not true that "God erases your memories of them" (I'm ignoring the obvious fact that losing some of your memories need not erase your identity). Heaven is a place where the fullness of truth is revealed to us; at the same time there we are protected from all evils, including sorrow for the loved ones in hell. This question admits three answers. First, that the blessed in heaven realize that the wicked in hell are no longer the people they knew and loved in this world. In the eternal fire your personality is erased; you are nothing more than burned-up ashes. There is no identity; there is nothing left to love.

This sounds to me like you're saying that god erases the memories of the people in hell. If that's so, then you're saying there are millions of burned up piles of ashes that are suffering endlessly and have no memory of why they are suffering. That sounds pretty fucking sadistic. Why would I be happy knowing that I was hanging out for eternity with a god who created millions of beings, tested them on earth, then erased their memories and punished them for eternity?

Quote:
Second, that salvation may, in fact, be universal. Hell exists, but it is possible that it is reserved solely for the devil and his angels

This doesn't make any sense. If this is true, then there is no punishment, and being saved or not is irrelevant. Why bother being a Christian when I can have a lot more fun enjoying all the things you call sins and then go to heaven?

Quote:
Third, that the damned may be so perverse that they simply prefer hell and choose it voluntarily. In that case their misery need not elicit any pity.

Ok. This is just lunacy. Cake or death??! Cake or death!?

Seriously, I don't even know how to begin responding to this it's so ludicrous. There are probably some people in the world who are so insane that they would say they prefer eternal burning to eternal happiness, but if they're insane, then they aren't responsible for their decisions, right? Even our courts don't execute insane people. Are you saying God does? Again, that's really sadistic.

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God in Christian theology has no passions. God can be jealous only in the metaphorical sense of wanting His faithful to remain with Him.

Passion is a word. It has meaning. If you change the definition so that it can fit your model, then you're avoiding the question by redefining it. If god has no emotions, then he is a computer, or a robot, or something. If he is just processing data and automatically assigning people to heaven or hell when they die, why would we as humans want to love him in a human sense? I'm supposed to love a computer so that the computer will make a pre-programmed response to my human emotion?

Let's backtrack a second, because this gets into some very sticky territory. God is all-knowing, all powerful, and all-loving, right? Ok.. actually he's all-knowing, all powerful, and all-not-loving-because-he-had-to-change-the-definition-of-love-because-he-doesn't-feel-emotions, but let's not belabor the point. If he is bound to moving closer to us when we experience the emotion of love directed at him, and bound to withdrawing from us when we don't, and if he is bound to send all the sinners to hell and all the saved to heaven, then this all-powerful being has no free will at all. If he can choose to deviate from the biblical definitions of himself, then he is a sadistic bastard because he doesn't. If he can't, then he's not all-powerful. If sometimes he doesn't draw near to us when we draw near to him, then he's a liar.

Ok... that's a little convoluted. Here's the simple version: If God deviates from the biblical account in any way, then he is a liar. If he is a liar, then he is not all good. Therefore, if God is all good, he cannot deviate from the biblical account of himself in any way. Since he cannot deviate, he is not all powerful, and if he exists, we know he MUST be a liar. Since we know he is a liar, we have no reason to trust anything he says.

Let me cut you off at the pass here. If you say that he can do any damn thing he wants because his definition of good is not the same as ours, I'm going to come back at you with the argument that if God has to operate on definitions that we can't comprehend on a level that eclipses logic, God is meaningless and incomprehensible, and we shouldn't waste our time worrying about a being that can't be understood. If you reply that he has told us how to understand him, I'm going to ask you to explain how we can understand him, but if we try to apply definitions to the understanding, we'll end up with nonsense since his words are meaningless to us.

So... please answer these questions.

1) Is God comprehensible? If so, would you please define the following words in Godspeak: Love, hate, jealous, angry. Oh, and you're not allowed to use the word metaphor. A metaphor is not a definition. Use words to create a sentence that explains directly what those words mean when God says them.

2) Which version of hell do you believe in? Is your Christianity completely irrelevant because everyone's going to hell? Is your god sadistic because he only sends insane people to eternal torment? Is your god sadistic because he wipes the memory away from people who didn't pass his test and then punishes them for eternity, leaving them to wonder why the hell their life sucks so much?

3) If God doesn't feel emotions, is he all powerful? Follow me on this one. You know he's emotionless from reading the bible, right? If the bible says that he's emotionless, then he is, and never has, nor ever will, feel an emotion. That means he's not all-powerful, right? He could choose to feel an emotion, but then he'd be a liar, because he already told you he doesn't. So, which side of the fence are you on. Can God feel an emotion?

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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dominick_777 wrote:4

dominick_777 wrote:
4 questions for the questioners..

1) What happens if a personal can answer these in a reasonable way, that should be acceptable to anyone who follows the principles of reason?

2) Would the people asking these questions suddenly change their minds from non theism to at very least theism if that happens?

3) Or are these being asked for no real reason..implying the questioners arent really interested in reason or truth?

4) What would you say is an appropriate criteria you think is fair in answering one two or all of these?

Please be specific in your answer. I hope there's a consensus on the answer.

...What?

Puzzled


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It seems funny that the

It seems funny that the theist responses tend to be exactly what you would expect: rationalizations, whatever would most make them feel better. This is in inverse proportion to the particular violent, horrible crap pointed out in the Bible. Or, when someone points out a contradiction in a claim about God, they go right to the special plead, saying that God can do it in a magic way!

ROTF


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No, the memories of the

No, the memories of the damned are not erased. They retain their rationality, as well. It's difficult to explain, and, in fact, I don't want to explain it. It doesn't matter.

Quote:
This doesn't make any sense. If this is true, then there is no punishment, and being saved or not is irrelevant. Why bother being a Christian when I can have a lot more fun enjoying all the things you call sins and then go to heaven?

Because you will be more or less happy in heaven depending on how well you lived your life. And since life is everlasting, even a tiny increase in the eternal reward due to greater charity or heroism in this life will produce a potentially infinite increase in the bliss in heaven. On this line of reasoning you become a Christian not in order to ensure your salvation but (1) because Christianity is true; (2) in order to be happier both in this life and the next.

Quote:
Quote:
Third, that the damned may be so perverse that they simply prefer hell and choose it voluntarily. In that case their misery need not elicit any pity.

Ok. This is just lunacy. Cake or death??! Cake or death!?

I don't think so. The devil hates everything that exists. And he cannot be reformed. The damned are like the devil, and they like it. There is not a trace of the Holy Spirit in their hearts. They relish their malice. They exist but in a completely corrupt state.

Quote:
Passion is a word. It has meaning. If you change the definition so that it can fit your model, then you're avoiding the question by redefining it. If god has no emotions, then he is a computer, or a robot, or something.

I did not change the definition. "Passion" and "passive" have the same root: meaning something elicited, brought into existence by another. m-w.com say that "passion" is "the state or capacity of being acted on by external agents or forces" and "applies to an emotion that is deeply stirring or ungovernable." God's only emotion, I believe, is the joy of contemplation of his infinite perfection, as well as of creaturely goodnesses. This joy follows upon His self-knowledge and the knowledge of the this world's particulars. So it is subject to reason, so to speak. It is not then ungovernable; on the contrary, it is active or brought about by reason. Human passions, such as jealousy, on the other hand, are often not controlled by reason. Aquinas distinguishes between the sensual appetite (the concupiscible: pleasure and pain, and the irascible: anger, etc.) from the intellectual appetite (joy and sorrow). In humans the former does not obey reason at all; the latter does but partially.

It might be a good exercise to go through all the human emotions and see if God can feel them. I remember reading somewhere that there are something like 6 basic emotions and a couple dozen derived ones.

Quote:
If God deviates from the biblical account in any way, then he is a liar. If he is a liar, then he is not all good.

I don't know what relevance this has to my response, but I do not believe that the Bible is infallible. But even if it is infallible, it is, as you well know, a matter of correct interpretation. The Bible is a useful tool, a means to salvation, nothing more.

Quote:
If you say that he can do any damn thing he wants because his definition of good is not the same as ours, I'm going to come back at you with the argument that if God has to operate on definitions that we can't comprehend on a level that eclipses logic, God is meaningless and incomprehensible, and we shouldn't waste our time worrying about a being that can't be understood.

The claim that God's definition of good is different from ours is extremely problematic, because His heaven may then end up our hell. And our good deeds may end up His sins. So, no, I am certainly not going to say that.

Quote:
1) Is God comprehensible? If so, would you please define the following words in Godspeak: Love, hate, jealous, angry. Oh, and you're not allowed to use the word metaphor. A metaphor is not a definition. Use words to create a sentence that explains directly what those words mean when God says them.

The word "to comprehend" means to grasp fully, to contain something in the mind in its entirety. God is comprehensible to Himself only but not any finite being such as man. So saints see God in His entirety, because He is simple, but more or less clearly depending on their charity and merit. Yet they do not comprehend His essence.

Love: 1) willing good to another (love of friendship) 2) desiring something for yourself (love of concupiscence) 3) choosing something as opposed to something else (dilection) 4) holding someone dear (charity) 5) enjoying someone's company (philia). In Godspeak (1) and (4) are the only love that is felt.

Hate: Contempt for evil done. God does not hate. But He does shame evildoers, just as He glorifies the saints.

Jealous, angry: God cannot be jealous or angry.

Quote:
2) Which version of hell do you believe in? Is your Christianity completely irrelevant because everyone's going to hell? Is your god sadistic because he only sends insane people to eternal torment? Is your god sadistic because he wipes the memory away from people who didn't pass his test and then punishes them for eternity, leaving them to wonder why the hell their life sucks so much?

Where in my article did you get the idea that I believe that everyone is going to hell? To quote you, "This is just lunacy."

Insane people? Why did you single them out for hell?

Quote:
3) If God doesn't feel emotions, is he all powerful? Follow me on this one. You know he's emotionless from reading the bible, right? If the bible says that he's emotionless, then he is, and never has, nor ever will, feel an emotion. That means he's not all-powerful, right? He could choose to feel an emotion, but then he'd be a liar, because he already told you he doesn't. So, which side of the fence are you on. Can God feel an emotion?

God has emotions, because He has will. But His emotion is the joy of being and contemplation. Again, some of what we call emotions are passive; others are active. God's emotions of love (particularly, unconditional love), peace, and joy are active; they obey His reason.

I derived my analysis of God's emotions not from the Bible but from philosophical reasoning.


mdf1960
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The Damned

Dimitry:

The damned are like the devil, and they like it

If the damned like being in hell, how are they being punished?

God's only emotion, I believe, is the joy of contemplation of his infinite perfection

So, does God feels joy when, say, two buildings collapse and crush 3000 people to death?


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Quote:No, the memories of

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No, the memories of the damned are not erased. They retain their rationality, as well. It's difficult to explain, and, in fact, I don't want to explain it. It doesn't matter.

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAH!!!!!!!!

(picture me rolling around on the floor laughing at you. Is that really your answer? What a cop out!)

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Because you will be more or less happy in heaven depending on how well you lived your life. And since life is everlasting, even a tiny increase in the eternal reward due to greater charity or heroism in this life will produce a potentially infinite increase in the bliss in heaven. On this line of reasoning you become a Christian not in order to ensure your salvation but (1) because Christianity is true; (2) in order to be happier both in this life and the next.

You're going off the deep end here. I understand that you don't want to address my point, but this is just bizarre. How does this incredibly uninformative paragraph change the fact that heaven and hell are completely irrelevant in your current scheme? Could we get back to the question please? Is there no hell?

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I don't think so. The devil hates everything that exists. And he cannot be reformed. The damned are like the devil, and they like it. There is not a trace of the Holy Spirit in their hearts. They relish their malice. They exist but in a completely corrupt state.

I'm serious, dude. You're going off the deep end to try to defend the ludicrous. Give me evidence that there is a person on the planet that hates absolutely everything that exists. No kidding, you're starting to sound like some kind of unabomber crazy talk person. (I'm not making a joke. What you're saying is scary.)

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God's only emotion, I believe, is the joy of contemplation of his infinite perfection, as well as of creaturely goodnesses.

The bible disagrees with you.

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I did not change the definition. "Passion" and "passive" have the same root:

Yes, you did change the definition. "Passion" and "passive" have the same root but different meanings. "Craze" and "crazy" have the same root. One means something like a fad, and the other describes the kind of logic necessary to believe that every word with the same root has the same meaning.

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The word "to comprehend" means to grasp fully, to contain something in the mind in its entirety. God is comprehensible to Himself only but not any finite being such as man. So saints see God in His entirety, because He is simple, but more or less clearly depending on their charity and merit. Yet they do not comprehend His essence.

Bah. You're dancing around definitions again. Not only that, but you're contradicting yourself while you dance. If saints see God in his entirety, then God is fully comprehensible. If it is more or less clear depending on their charity and merit, then you are suggesting that only perfectly charitable people merit complete understanding. Since there are no such people, then god is incomprehensible again. You can't have both. Pick one.

Oh, and your whole theory about essence and such has already been thoroughly debunked. Unless you'd like to revisit that, you're going to have to try something else.

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Where in my article did you get the idea that I believe that everyone is going to hell? To quote you, "This is just lunacy."

Insane people? Why did you single them out for hell?

I was listing all the possibilities implied by your argument. I didn't suggest which one you believed. And in my opinion, all of the possibilities are pretty looney, but that one in particular is complete nonsense. You seem to at least agree to that.

I singled out insane people because no sane person behaves in a way that is completely opposed to their own self interest. Therefore, the only person who would qualify for that possibility regarding hell must be insane.

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Heaven

Because you will be more or less happy in heaven depending on how well you lived your life.

Well, won't people be unhappy that they could have been even happier in heaven had they lived a better life?


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Quote:Is there no

Quote:
Is there no hell?

There probably is, but we do not know how many people are there, if any.

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If the damned like being in hell, how are they being punished?

They don't like being in hell, for two reasons: (1) all of their evil desires can no longer be satisfied; (2) they are punished by fire, and the pain they feel exceeds any possible pain that one can feel in this world, and that pain is neverending. The more they stay in hell, the more they hate, and so they keep sinning and therefore their punishment is forever.

Quote:
So, does God feels joy when, say, two buildings collapse and crush 3000 people to death?

First, God does not feel sorrow. Nothing can harm Him or affect His happiness. But second, God loves being, for everything that exists is good and is good to the extent that it exists. Insofar as the 3000 people are dead, there is less being to love (forgetting for the moment that life does not end with physical death). Metaphorically, God may be said to hate the diminution of being or goodness in the world. Similarly, we may say that God hates the unactualized due to human sin potential improvement of things in the world, including of human beings themselves. But God's primary emotion is love for what is in terms of its perfection.

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I'm serious, dude. You're going off the deep end to try to defend the ludicrous. Give me evidence that there is a person on the planet that hates absolutely everything that exists. No kidding, you're starting to sound like some kind of unabomber crazy talk person. (I'm not making a joke. What you're saying is scary.)

Very scary. But, "Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for the Lord is with me."

But the fact that there may be no "person on the planet that hates absolutely everything that exists" is precisely why I said that salvation may be universal.

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Yes, you did change the definition.

And you are not trying to understand. Even if you disagree, try first to grasp what I'm saying. As a general advice try to perceive my arguments in the best possible light rather than spending your time finding non-existent contradictions. I am not an idiot and do not say things that contradict one another.

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Yes, you did change the definition. "Passion" and "passive" have the same root but different meanings.

Different meanings but similar import.

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If saints see God in his entirety, then God is fully comprehensible. If it is more or less clear depending on their charity and merit, then you are suggesting that only perfectly charitable people merit complete understanding. Since there are no such people, then god is incomprehensible again. You can't have both. Pick one.

Imagine looking at a page in a book from afar. You see the page in its entirety, but you cannot make out the words. Similarly, the saints see the entire God, but do not have His infinite knowledge of Himself. Or so, at any rate, I understand it.


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Quote:Well, won't people be

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Well, won't people be unhappy that they could have been even happier in heaven had they lived a better life?

This is a great question.

They may have regrets initially upon being judged (e.g., upon seeing their "life review" as they call it in near-death experiences). But once they have entered heaven, they should feel no sadness for missed opportunities.

Why not? First, the blessed feel neither envy for those greater than they in glory nor contempt for those less than they (for those who are still in heaven). They are content with their reward as just and reflecting their merit. But what would stop them from regretting their mistakes, even though they have been forgiven? I think that the answer lies in the very hard to get ahold of idea that human salvation is both 100% up to us and 100% up to God. William Lane Craig put it this way, that it is up to God to create the possible world in which you will be saved, but it is up to you to save yourself in the possible world in which you find yourself. There is a saying to the effect that "pray as if everything depended on God; work as if everything depended on you." Or one can say that God's grace requires human cooperation; Augustine writes that God did not create you without your cooperation; neither will He save you without your cooperation. These are some attempts to get a grasp on this difficult mystery.

Whatever the case may be, suppose that you are saved. In that case the reason why you will not regret your choices would be that you will understand the whole economy of salvation. You will understand how even your mistakes were somehow necessary or unavoidable. If you are saved, then good must come out of evil. That does not mean that you should start doing evil so that good will result, but that no evil will in the end be revealed as gratuitous or without a good purpose.


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The damned

The damned are like the devil, and they like it

They don't like being in hell

Well, do they or don't they like being damned and in hell?


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Evil

...no evil will in the end be revealed as gratuitous or without a good purpose

Evil is therefore good. My friend, God makes the terms good and evil meaningless.


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Quote:There probably is, but

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There probably is, but we do not know how many people are there, if any.

So, god, in his infinite wisdom, created hell, a place which is impossible, since hell is supposed to be complete removal of god's presence, except that god is omnipresent. When he was done creating this place that can't exist, he didn't send anyone there, but had lots of people write about it.

I get it now. It's so simple. Thanks for clearing it up.

Quote:
They don't like being in hell, for two reasons: (1) all of their evil desires can no longer be satisfied; (2) they are punished by fire, and the pain they feel exceeds any possible pain that one can feel in this world, and that pain is neverending. The more they stay in hell, the more they hate, and so they keep sinning and therefore their punishment is forever.

How can they sin in hell? Why would it matter if they sinned? If they're being punished with exceedingly painful, um... pain... how is it that they like being there again?

Quote:
First, God does not feel sorrow. Nothing can harm Him or affect His happiness. But second, God loves being, for everything that exists is good and is good to the extent that it exists. Insofar as the 3000 people are dead, there is less being to love (forgetting for the moment that life does not end with physical death). Metaphorically, God may be said to hate the diminution of being or goodness in the world. Similarly, we may say that God hates the unactualized due to human sin potential improvement of things in the world, including of human beings themselves. But God's primary emotion is love for what is in terms of its perfection.

The bible disagrees with your assessment of god's emotional capabilities.

Quote:
Very scary. But, "Though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I fear no evil, for the Lord is with me."

But the fact that there may be no "person on the planet that hates absolutely everything that exists" is precisely why I said that salvation may be universal.

No, I don't mean scary that way. I mean the fact that you might believe what you're saying about the damned is scary because it's so completely out of touch with everything we know about human nature. Believing that "the damned" exist the way you've defined them is probably borderline sociopathic, and that scares me. (I'm not saying you're a sociopath, I'm saying that this particular belief smells of serious delusion.)

Quote:
And you are not trying to understand. Even if you disagree, try first to grasp what I'm saying. As a general advice try to perceive my arguments in the best possible light rather than spending your time finding non-existent contradictions. I am not an idiot and do not say things that contradict one another.

I disagree precisely because I understand what you're saying. I try to perceive your arguments based on the literal meaning of the words you use. Just saying that there are no contradictions in your argument doesn't change the fact that your arguments are full of contradictions. They're not hard to find... they're just hard for you to see because you refuse to accept the possibility that your system of logic is completely flawed and unusable. I have never called you an idiot. I'm sure you have plenty of brain power. I have said you're delusional, meaning that you are using your brain power in irrational ways to come to irrational conclusions. We're trying very hard to point out the flaws in your logic, but your dogmatic belief prevents you from understanding.

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Different meanings but similar import.

Um.. no. Different meanings and different import.
You don't get to just change words because the root is the same.

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Imagine looking at a page in a book from afar. You see the page in its entirety, but you cannot make out the words. Similarly, the saints see the entire God, but do not have His infinite knowledge of Himself. Or so, at any rate, I understand it.

Horse Hockey. This analogy has no relation to the question. I'm sorry you don't see that.

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Questions 1-3, 13,14 seem to

Questions 1-3, 13,14 seem to be related to literal interpretations of the stories in the bible. I'll ignore these for now since a literal interpretation of the bible isn't required to believe in god or be a christian. (IMHO)

Questions 6,7 are related to hell. I don't think a belief in hell is required to believe in god or be a christian.

Question 8 isn't really an unanswered question, but it does seem to feed right into the United Church of Christ's new campaign "God is Still Speaking" to address the evolution of religion as a good thing.

Questions 15-88 I skimmed and skipped because I didn't see any real thought provoking questions, until 89.

Quote:
4. When the believer gets to Heaven, how can Heaven be utter bliss when people they love and care about are burning in Hell ? - The Infidel Guy - [Note: Some say God erases your memories of them, but if God erases your memory, you as Mr. Joe /Jane Smoe ceases to exist.]

I don't believe that heaven or hell is in some other place. I don't think that hell even exists, so that leaves heaven. So 'The Kingdom of Heaven is at hand' means that it's here and it's what we make of it. So the whole notion of being good so you don't go to hell doesn't take you very far. You need to do what you can here and now with what you have.

Quote:
5. How can a God have emotions, i.e. jealousy, anger, sadness, love, etc., if he is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent? Emotional states are reactionary for the most part. How can God react to us if he is all-knowing and has a divine plan? - IG [Note: Indeed, many religious texts display their gods this way . Listen to the An Emotional Godshow.]

It makes it easier to tell a helpful story.

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9. Why haven't we seen God reattach severed heads, restore someone who was burned alive or regrow amputated limbs? Surely these would be miracles difficult to deny. - Adam Majors and IG [Note: The typical answer is that man doesn't dictate God's actions. The conundrum here however is that, if God wants us to "know" him, then surely feats such as those mentioned above would be happening all over the world. Until they do, I'll remain an atheist.]

This assumes that god has an ego to be satisfied, right?

Quote:
10. Why does God entrust the spreading of 'His' word to sinners? Why doesn't he do it himself? - IG [Note: Surely God would have known that not everyone would be convinced by the reality[sic] of his Bible. If God loves us so much, we are all going to Heaven. If God knew that I would be an atheist, and he doesn't like atheists, he shouldn't have allowed me to come into existence. But he did. Therefore, I must be serving the will of God, for I exist. Smiling]

Who says god doesn't like atheists?

Quote:
11. In II Kings 2-23/24 we read about God sending 2 she-bears to attack children for calling the prophet Elisa bald, which he was, the bears killed 42 of the children. Was this a good thing to do? -- Brandon and IG[Note: I have heard some argue that the boys were a gang. So?! I didn't read anywhere in that passage where they laid a finger on the guy . Also, what kind of bears are these that can kill 42 kids? Super Bears? Surely the kids had to be running away.]

Yup, there are some pretty messed up stories in the bible. How does this answer questions on the existence of god?

Quote:
12. I have often heard from many believers that even Satan has a presence in the church, which is why even in church people can still have impure thoughts. If Satan can find his way in the church, how do Christians know that Satan didn't find his way into the Bible and twist the whole book? After all, men did vote on which books would make the Holy Bible. - The Infidel Guy

This is the same kind of question as the hell question. I don't see satan as the anti-god. In fact, I don't see satan figuring much into my beliefs. This reminds me of a short story by Stanislaw Lem, a polish sci-fi writer. In the story a group of people built the 'perfect machine' and asked it to create a 'perfect world'. the machine built a palace and invited everyone into it for a feast. The machine managed to turn all the people into nice geometric shapes and place them in nice geomeric patterns on the ground to achieve a 'perfect world'. I think your expectations on the role of god are overblown. If god had in his/hers/its nature to acheive a perfect world, there would most certainly be no humans. The question is what is in the nature of god. I wish I knew.

Quote:
15. Many Christians believe that God is a thinking being, that he solves problems and makes a way for them when troubles come. Does God Think? If God is thinking, did he know his thoughts before he thought them? If so, again, where is his freewill and how is God thinking at all if everything seems to be one uncontrollable action/thoughts. - The Infidel Guy [Note: I'd say a God cannot think at all. To do so, would strip him of omniscience. Thinking is a temporal process.] ON GOD'S ATEMPORALITY
1.) God, an atemporal being, created the Universe.
2.) Creation is a temporal processes because X cannot cause Y to come into being unless X existed temporally prior to Y.
3.) If God existed prior to the creation of the Universe he is a temporal being.
4.) Since God is atemporal, God cannot be the creator the Universe.
[Note: I guess I should also note here that a timeless being would be without the proposition of past, and future. But to be omniscient, God must know the past and future. Hence a God that is atemporal and omniscient cannot logically exist. Smiling]

The thoughts here are kind of jumbled, but I'll try to sift through them. I don't know if god thinks or not, but that doesn't affect my belief that god exists. The thoughts on god's atemporality seem to say, "since I can't conceive of god, god does not exist"

Quote:
89. What is a god supposedly made of? --AI

um.... Love?

Thoughts?

Sorry, I didn't hear back from a couple questions. I'll lurk elsewhere. Smiling


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First of all,

First of all, congratulations, Not-bob, on abandoning a literalist interpretation of the bible. You are on the path to sanity.

not-bob wrote:

Quote:
5. How can a God have emotions, i.e. jealousy, anger, sadness, love, etc., if he is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent? Emotional states are reactionary for the most part. How can God react to us if he is all-knowing and has a divine plan? - IG [Note: Indeed, many religious texts display their gods this way . Listen to the An Emotional Godshow.]

It makes it easier to tell a helpful story.

So whenever we hear that god wants this or that, we can rest assured that that part of the story was just made up by the human storyteller, and carries no more moral authority than that. Thanks for clearing that up.

not-bob wrote:

Quote:
9. Why haven't we seen God reattach severed heads, restore someone who was burned alive or regrow amputated limbs? Surely these would be miracles difficult to deny. - Adam Majors and IG [Note: The typical answer is that man doesn't dictate God's actions. The conundrum here however is that, if God wants us to "know" him, then surely feats such as those mentioned above would be happening all over the world. Until they do, I'll remain an atheist.]

This assumes that god has an ego to be satisfied, right?

Wrong. It assumes that god loves us and wants us to know the truth about him and his love - as jesus said. Was jesus lying or just wrong?

not-bob wrote:

Quote:
10. Why does God entrust the spreading of 'His' word to sinners? Why doesn't he do it himself? - IG [Note: Surely God would have known that not everyone would be convinced by the reality[sic] of his Bible. If God loves us so much, we are all going to Heaven. If God knew that I would be an atheist, and he doesn't like atheists, he shouldn't have allowed me to come into existence. But he did. Therefore, I must be serving the will of God, for I exist. Smiling]

Who says god doesn't like atheists?

Dodging the question. Why does god rely on imperfect humans to spread his word if it is his purpose that the word be spread accurately?

not-bob wrote:

Quote:
11. In II Kings 2-23/24 we read about God sending 2 she-bears to attack children for calling the prophet Elisa bald, which he was, the bears killed 42 of the children. Was this a good thing to do? -- Brandon and IG[Note: I have heard some argue that the boys were a gang. So?! I didn't read anywhere in that passage where they laid a finger on the guy . Also, what kind of bears are these that can kill 42 kids? Super Bears? Surely the kids had to be running away.]

Yup, there are some pretty messed up stories in the bible. How does this answer questions on the existence of god?

If the bible is a flawed creation of man, then how does it act as evidence for god, or his wishes?

not-bob wrote:

Quote:
12. I have often heard from many believers that even Satan has a presence in the church, which is why even in church people can still have impure thoughts. If Satan can find his way in the church, how do Christians know that Satan didn't find his way into the Bible and twist the whole book? After all, men did vote on which books would make the Holy Bible. - The Infidel Guy

This is the same kind of question as the hell question. I don't see satan as the anti-god. In fact, I don't see satan figuring much into my beliefs. This reminds me of a short story by Stanislaw Lem, a polish sci-fi writer. In the story a group of people built the 'perfect machine' and asked it to create a 'perfect world'. the machine built a palace and invited everyone into it for a feast. The machine managed to turn all the people into nice geometric shapes and place them in nice geomeric patterns on the ground to achieve a 'perfect world'. I think your expectations on the role of god are overblown. If god had in his/hers/its nature to acheive a perfect world, there would most certainly be no humans. The question is what is in the nature of god. I wish I knew.

So now we don't know the nature of god either? Then why bother with this whole bag of claptrap called worship? We can't even know if it's what we are "supposed" to be doing.

not-bob wrote:

The thoughts here are kind of jumbled, but I'll try to sift through them. I don't know if god thinks or not, but that doesn't affect my belief that god exists. The thoughts on god's atemporality seem to say, "since I can't conceive of god, god does not exist"

No, what the points on atemporality show is that christian claims about god violate logic. Showing that a statement violates logic is the same as proving that statement false - unless we want to throw logic out the window in which case we might as well all start worshipping pink unicorns.

not-bob wrote:

Quote:
89. What is a god supposedly made of? --AI

um.... Love?

Thoughts?

Love is an emotion generated by electrical and chemical impulses in a human brain. Is this to say that god is really imaginary? I agree.

Lazy is a word we use when someone isn't doing what we want them to do.
- Dr. Joy Brown


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Not-bob, I have to give you

Not-bob, I have to give you props. You have found ways to take wishy-washy fuzz religion and make it even floofier. (I had to invent a word.. fuzzier just didn't seem um.. fuzzy enough.) Why bother? Seriously! You admit that you don't believe what the bible says, except for what you want to believe, and you freely pick and choose what's true, what's literal, what's false, what's metaphorical, and what you can ignore completely.

You're a credit to the word "hedge."

Atheism isn't a lot like religion at all. Unless by "religion" you mean "not religion". --Ciarin

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Disregard this

Disregard this


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7. "God is all merciful," we

7. "God is all merciful," we hear quite often. Wouldn't it be more merciful of God to simply snap sinners out of existence rather than send them to hell? Or better yet, since he's all-knowing, not allow them to be born at all? - IG

Christians believe God gives us free will - i.e. we have the right to be born, and to sin. By not letting sinners be born, he would be braking a crucial promise he set up between him and mankind.

ON GOD'S LOVE & HELL
1.) God's love is superlative.
- that is true.

2.) God's love of man exceeds man's love of self.
- that is also true

3.) Man's love of self prohibits torture.
- judging by the amount of torture in the world caused by man, I'd disagree, but go on....

4.) Considering God's greater love for us, Hell (eternal torture) is illogical.[/i]
- Look at this chain of logic instead:

1)God is perfect, loves us infinitely, and wants to exist among us.
2)We, mankind, have rejected God (that's what this whole site's about, right?) by sinning and refusing to follow his rules (even love requires rules for it to work). This has made us unclean so we cannot exist with him.
3)He is torn - he loves us so we have free will, but we refused to be with him. So he gives us a second chance to clean our act up.
4) The next step is up to us - either we accept Jesus as the way to being with God, our sins are nailed to his cross and we become acceptable in God's eyes, or we remain outside his presence as before (i.e. hell).

Hope that makes sense.

89 - what is God made of?

Given that Christians believe God is a being outside the universe, this does not apply. How can you describe something outside the universe in terms of particles inside the universe? If you really want an answer, you could say carbon, hydrogen, oxygen etc. - he was after all, at one time, in human form.


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sharky wrote:7. "God is all

sharky wrote:
7. "God is all merciful," we hear quite often. Wouldn't it be more merciful of God to simply snap sinners out of existence rather than send them to hell? Or better yet, since he's all-knowing, not allow them to be born at all? - IG

Christians believe God gives us free will - i.e. we have the right to be born, and to sin. By not letting sinners be born, he would be braking a crucial promise he set up between him and mankind.

Christian belief in free will is held without evidence and begs the question that free will exists in a manner that would allow people to make decisions independant of ALL cause and effect. This is logically impossible, since any thought always follows from the thought before. The only mechanism that would allow for christian-style free will would be a supernatural soul that is somehow immune to causality. Which again begs about 100 questions.

sharky wrote:

- Look at this chain of logic instead:

1)God is perfect, loves us infinitely, and wants to exist among us.
2)We, mankind, have rejected God (that's what this whole site's about, right?) by sinning and refusing to follow his rules (even love requires rules for it to work). This has made us unclean so we cannot exist with him.
3)He is torn - he loves us so we have free will, but we refused to be with him. So he gives us a second chance to clean our act up.
4) The next step is up to us - either we accept Jesus as the way to being with God, our sins are nailed to his cross and we become acceptable in God's eyes, or we remain outside his presence as before (i.e. hell).

God still set the whole thing up! The desire for acceptance, the predeliction of people to reject him, the need for free will, the existence of sin...all of it. According to your own rules, there is no one to blame but god, and therefore it is entirely accurate to say that god is willfuly torturing the ones he loves.

sharky wrote:

Hope that makes sense.

'Fraid not.

sharky wrote:

89 - what is God made of?

Given that Christians believe God is a being outside the universe, this does not apply. How can you describe something outside the universe in terms of particles inside the universe? If you really want an answer, you could say carbon, hydrogen, oxygen etc. - he was after all, at one time, in human form.

Things that are outside the universe and outside our frames of reference are, by definition, unknowable to us. Therefore, even if we allow the assertion that god exists, we can say NOTHING else about him. He is Unknown, and everything we have ever been told about his wants, his nature and his commands are just so much fantasy and speculation.

Lazy is a word we use when someone isn't doing what we want them to do.
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Sapient wrote: That's not

Sapient wrote:

That's not rational.


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I BULIEVE! I BULIEVE!

I BULIEVE! I BULIEVE! GREAT SPAGHETTI I HAVE SEEN THE LAIGHT!!!!!!!


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Questions and Answers...

Doing this in groups of 10 for easy response. Eye-wink First, in the interests of full disclosure, I am what I like to call a 'theo-apathist'. Does one or more deities exist? Don't much care. Either (t)he(y) do or don't, but it's an interesting discussion to have.


Quote:
1. If Jesus fulfilled all the OT prophecies so well, why didn't the Jews recognize him as the messiah? - Francois Tremblay


Unfortunately, this question really doesn't go toward the existance or non-existance of a deity. Instead, it simply establishes that should one exist, and should Joshua, son of Joseph, have indeed been the messiah, that in no way prevents men (including men 2000 years ago) from being fallible.

After all, if science answers all questions about geology and earth's age and history so well (and, you know what? it does!) why don't all men recognize that?

Quote:
2. If Gen 3:24 is true, why hasn't anyone found the Cherubims and the " flaming sword which turned every way"?


There's a few possibilities here. The first is that the Cherubim (btw, that's already a plural, no need to add an 's' ) and the Bic Broadsword of Holy Coolness were there to prevent the return of Man to Paradise. Once Adam and Eve were dead and knowledge of the location of Eden lost, maybe they got to go hang in Aruba, bamboo having long since choked out the Tree of Knowledge (have you ever had to deal w/bamboo? That stuff overwhelms almost anything). Also, both the Flood and the Ten Plagues appear to have been grounded in the aftermath of cataclysmic geological events (which may or may not have been fomented by an agency of divine power). So maybe the place got trashed then, and once more, the Cherubim and BBHC got to head for Tijuana. Other scenarios certainly apply, including that Adam made them up because he didn't want little Seth playing in a garden with such a blatantly sadistic snake.

Quote:
3. It's been proven that modern humans originated from Africa. Yet, the Adam and Eve story claims the first Humans lived in a garden in Eden, near 4 rivers. ( Most of which no one can find). One of these rivers mentioned is the Euphrates, which runs through Iraq, Syria and a portion of Turkey. What's the truth? Did man come out of Africa or near the Euphrates River? - The Infidel Guy


Where's Salem? Or Paris? Or Jerusalem? Place names get recycled all the time. Maybe the Euphrates we know isn't the Euphrates they meant. Or possibly when Genesis all got written down, they just grabbed the name because, well, Adam and Eve were utter morons until they had the banana (apple, banana, whatever) and got tossed out on their bare butts and forgot to name the rivers?

Unfortunately, though, given that nobody claims God himself wrote down every copy of Genesis and sent them out via Godcast, all questions 2 & 3 really establish, once again, is that regardless of the existence or non-existence of a divinity, man makes mistakes. And if anyone out there DOES claim that God himself personally put the ink on the paper for every copy of the Old/New/Newer (Qu'ran) Testaments? Congrats, you have proven man's fallibility yet again, all by yourself. Go you!

Quote:
4. When the believer gets to Heaven, how can Heaven be utter bliss when people they love and care about are burning in Hell ? - The Infidel Guy - [Note: Some say God erases your memories of them, but if God erases your memory, you as Mr. Joe /Jane Smoe ceases to exist.]


I've heard a couple of interesting answers to this question (let's face it, this is NOT a new question). One of them is that heaven and hell aren't places so much as states of being. That all men will endure eternally after the Judgement, but some will exist in a state of grace, while others will exist knowing that God has cut them off. Basically, you have until the end of the world to make Dad proud of you, or he'll be disappointed forever. And you'll just have to deal with that. This intepretation holds that a state of grace assuages all worries and sorrows, and that while you might expect to pity those folks who don't get to have their sorrows auto-assuaged, you're gonna be too hopped up on God to care. It's not that you don't remember, it's that you're simply high as a kite. Forever.

Quote:
5. How can a God have emotions, i.e. jealousy, anger, sadness, love, etc., if he is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent? Emotional states are reactionary for the most part. How can God react to us if he is all-knowing and has a divine plan? - IG [Note: Indeed, many religious texts display their gods this way . Listen to the An Emotional Godshow.]


God manages this one by being ineffable. Basically, God exists in more than our 4 dimensions (height, width, depth, time), and the course of time for him is as a painting for us. Parts of it can provoke reaction, as can the whole, but his frame of reference is similar to us looking at something on an easel. We know where it's going and what we're doing with it. That doesn't mean we, as artists, don't experience the emotions we're crafting along the way. The analogy, I admit, is flawed, but any analogy of 4-dimensional existance to existence in more than 4 dimensions would be, just as the 'dots on a balloon' analogy to universal expansion is flawed.

Quote:
6. Why would God create a place such as hell to torture sinners forever when he foreknew who would disappoint him? - IG [Note: Some say you have a choice, but this misses the point. If God hates sin so much, why create Adam and Eve when he knew they'd sin? The only conclusion I can come up with, if Yaweh exists, is that he wanted sin to enter the world.]


Maybe he did. More on this in a bit.

Quote:
7. "God is all merciful," we hear quite often. Wouldn't it be more merciful of God to simply snap sinners out of existence rather than send them to hell? Or better yet, since he's all-knowing, not allow them to be born at all? - IG


Flaws in a piece of artwork can often be intentionally inserted in order to highlight and contrast the 'pristine' section(s). Without knowing the final intention of a divinity, it is impossible to judge motives, and for all we know, any divinity that exists may well have been lying to us regarding those intentions anyway. Hard to verify the intentions of something you can't even verify the existence of.

Quote:
8. Muslims are supposed to pray 5 times a day towards Mecca. Each prayer includes a variety of ritualism and posturing. If a muslim astronaut were to land on Mars. Prayer to Mecca would be ritualistically impossible due to the rotation of Earth and Mars. Are Muslims stuck here in Earth? IG [Note: Since this was first posted, a Muslim astronaut was faced with this very dilemma. The authoritative clergy informed him to pray as he normally would. I see this no where in the Koran. You see? Religions must change, or die out. It's interesting to note that, in the Koran, the moon is believed to be in the lowest Heaven, the level for those that barely made it to Heaven. Surah 71:15-16. One problem, no man can supposedly get to Heaven until they die. Yet, we've been to the moon. Our satellites beyond that.]


First bit: Yep, religions must change. Your point? Second bit: Guess you're looking at more human fallibility creeping into otherwise pristine holy texts, huh? Once more, the existence and reliability of human error is not evidence for or against the existence of the divine.

Quote:
9. Why haven't we seen God reattach severed heads, restore someone who was burned alive or regrow amputated limbs? Surely these would be miracles difficult to deny. - Adam Majors and IG [Note: The typical answer is that man doesn't dictate God's actions. The conundrum here however is that, if God wants us to "know" him, then surely feats such as those mentioned above would be happening all over the world. Until they do, I'll remain an atheist.]


Maybe he doesn't like showing off. If God wants us to know him, perhaps he doesn't want us to know him as a performer. Perhaps he doesn't want us to 'know' him through the extraordinary. If I go out and bowl a 300 game once, do I want people to know me as a 300 bowler? Or do I want people to know me for me, for the person and things I do all the time? If God exists, and is the Creator, then is there not sufficient means to know God through his creation? Must we have it all spelled out? Where then is the joy of discovery, of learning? Is it not better to come to understand something on our own, to have that moment of epiphany and achievement?

Perhaps if God exists, he wants us to come to know him by seeing what he's done, marvelling and taking joy in all of the little things, and understand him for the totality of his craft... not just some flashy babysitting.

Quote:
10. Why does God entrust the spreading of 'His' word to sinners? Why doesn't he do it himself? - IG [Note: Surely God would have known that not everyone would be convinced by the reality[sic] of his Bible. If God loves us so much, we are all going to Heaven. If God knew that I would be an atheist, and he doesn't like atheists, he shouldn't have allowed me to come into existence. But he did. Therefore, I must be serving the will of God, for I exist. Smiling]


Maybe he does (do it himself). Maybe God's Word is more than just the scriptures. If there is divinity in the Beatitudes, then is not there also divinity in the beating of a sparrow's wings? In the relation of a circle's diameter to its circumference? To look up a question... what is the spreading of the Word except a means to bring people to 'know' him? And if it is... then what is science and the clear-eyed observation of the world around us but a means to know him? A work of art does not immediately make us say 'my, look at how well the painter used his brush'... it is not intended to evoke a sense of appreciation of the craftsmanship of the sculptor. Art evokes its own wonder, joy, sorrow, what-have-you... and that emotion, in that evocation, we know the artist. Maybe we should look at creation as less of a utilitarian event, and more of an artistic one.

And hey, maybe Douglas Adams got it right in LU&E w/God's final message to his creation...

"We are sorry for the inconvenience."

Anyway, that's my first 10. I'll be back later w/another 10.

"You've got to remember that these are just simple farmers. These are people of the land. The common clay of the new West. You know... morons." - The Waco Kid


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a response to these questions

 

I'm answering these questions as a liberal Protestant. That is, someone who doesn't share most of the same presuppositions that fundamentalists do. I'm more likely to be closer to some atheists on some of these matters, but whether you consider me orthodox or not, these were questions presented to theists in general, not just fundamentalists.

1. If Jesus fulfilled all the OT prophecies so well, why didn't the Jews recognize him as the messiah? - Francois Tremblay

Something doesn't have to be recognized by all for it to be the case but I think you're misreading the role of the prophets.

Prophecy, speaking God's word to the people, is not the same thing as fortune tellers. It's why a modern day prophet is more likely be a Martin Luther King than some 1-900 read your fortune line

2. If Gen 3:24 is true, why hasn't anyone found the Cherubims and the " flaming sword which turned every way"?

Genesis is in mythic time. Whatever may have been our innocence we can't get back to that place. Genesis uses angels, but the point remains regardless of the vehicle one uses to present it.

3. Did man come out of Africa or near the Euphrates River? - The Infidel Guy

Let the biologists and others fight it out. Genesis is a mythic account or series of common stories of a given people, so the questions one presents to such a text are different than this.

4. When the believer gets to Heaven, how can Heaven be utter bliss when people they love and care about are burning in Hell ? -

It' s not a given that individual self consciousness is a feature of our existence after death. The OT says nothing about hell, next to nothing on heaven and the NT is too varied to create a doctrine.

5. How can a God have emotions if he is omnipotent, omniscient, and omnipresent? Emotional states are reactionary for the most part.

The Bible does descibe God having such emotions. It doe not describe God as having these omnis (in any greek sense of them). Emotions indicate personality and relationality, the omnis don't

6. Why would God create a place such as hell to torture sinners forever when he foreknew who would disappoint him? -

No indication in the Bible that this is the case. The only thing which can tie the various passages about the afterlife/ the end of history is a hope or trust that God will set things right again.

7. "Wouldn't it be more merciful of God to simply snap sinners out of existence rather than send them to hell? Or better yet, since he's all-knowing, not allow them to be born at all? - IG

The afterlife is not the point of faith, it's only an expression of a hope that can only be grounded in this life and world . See answers to 4 and 6


ON GOD'S LOVE & HELL
1.) God's love is superlative.
2.) God's love of man exceeds man's love of self.
3.) Man's love of self prohibits torture.
4.) Considering God's greater love for us, Hell (eternal torture) is illogical.

Ok

8. Religions must change, or die out.

Indeed

9. Why haven't we seen God reattach severed heads, restore someone who was burned alive or regrow amputated limbs? Surely these would be miracles difficult to deny.

Many a pentecostal would claim such things happen. I don't know either way but given that a term like miracle is an evaluative term, I'm not sure any event could defy the label of natural event or miracle. My hunch is miracles usually are found the natural events.

10. Why does God entrust the spreading of 'His' word to sinners? Why doesn't he do it himself? -

God does do it through all sorts of ways, people, burning bushes, the beauty of the natural world, reading a good book

11. In II Kings 2-23/24 we read about God sending 2 she-bears to attack children for calling the prophet Elisa bald, which he was, the bears killed 42 of the children. Was this a good thing to do? --

No. But hopefully bald headed people can take comfort in the story

12. how do Christians know that Satan didn't find his way into the Bible and twist the whole book? After all, men did vote on which books would make the Holy Bible. -

Given the collective experience of the church, you probably get a mix of the good and the demonic.

13. Why did God allow Lot and his daughters to escape from Sodom and Gomorra when he destroyed it only to later have Lot and his daughters engage in incestuous fornication.

Because the daughters thought that they were the last folks on earth. If they didn't do daddy, no more humans.

14. how come fossils show carnivorous animals existed before man? -

Genesis describes the "fall" in terms which suggest that what ails us and what it will take to make things right involves more than humans. I think it's right though it's put in mythological form

15. ON GOD'S ATEMPORALITY
1.) God, an atemporal being, created the Universe.
2.) Creation is a temporal processes because X cannot cause Y to come into being unless X existed temporally prior to Y.
3.) If God existed prior to the creation of the Universe he is a temporal being.
4.) Since God is atemporal, God cannot be the creator the Universe.

I agree. It is why at least some aspect of God must be temporal. There's several good arguments to be made for God's temporality (at least that aspect of God we interact with ourselves as temporal creatures). Edgar Brightman is worth checking out on this.

16. ON FAITH
1.) A prerequisite to believe in a Faith is faith.
2.) Having faith is all that is required to accept a Faith (belief) as true.
3.) All Faiths are true.
[Note: Of course all Faiths aren`t true, but this is the only logical conclusion that can be drawn from a person that states that, "Faith" is how one knows God.]

This assumes that faith is sufficient. It may be required without it being sufficient

17. Why didn't God just kill Adam and Eve after the Fall and start from scratch?

This assumes the omnis, which I don't buy as biblical

18. If a spirit is non-physical but the human body is physical, how does a spirit stay in our bodies? - IG ON SPIRITS
1.) Spirits are not physical entities.
2.) Brains are physical entities.
3.) Past experiences are stored in our physical brains, we call that, Memory..
4.) Injury can damage portions of the physical brain that store memory and can alter or erase memories completely.
5.) If human spirits exist... after death, spirits can have no memory.
[Note: Some will say the spirit stores physical memories as well, but if true, the spirit would have to be physical at least to a degree. How could a non-physical spirit store, physical memories?]

Are mental events physical? That's a big conundrum I hear in philosophy circles. Spirit is a word not much used these days, but sure without the body I don't know that self consciousness can continue.

But if the past is carried over into the future, then something of us is helping constitute the future, including well after we're gone and this provides the framework to consider immorality of a sort without resort to the kind of language you're using.

19. Since he can't DO anything, he might as well not exist. - IG ON GOD'S IMMUTABILITY - Unchangingness

No indication in the Bible that God does not change. To be in relation is to be in mutable. This is why these omni categories make little sense in relationship to the Bible.

20. If God is all-knowing, how could he be disappointed in His creation? -

Another reason the omni categories don't work, see answer to 19

21. God struck down the Tower of Babel angry at the intent of the people that built them, if this is the case, many of the great pyramids around the world should be rubble also, Were not the Egyptians and many other ancient pyramid builders reaching toward God /The Heavens?

And none of these powers exist now. The foolishness of humans trying to take the place of deity, a well known problem in human history usually leads to some demise (note to the U.S. empires don't last forever).

22. My question is: What Universe is the Intelligent Design proponent using to compare this Universe with to draw such an analogy? What God did he see create a Universe? -

Good question that was taken from Hume. But instead of the watchmaker argument, let's consider Aristotle's claim that we can see to what ends something is going and from there deduce at least one of the causes of that thing.

23. Why did God flood the earth to remove evil? It didn't work!

See answer to 19 and 3

24. If the garden of Eden was a perfect paradise as xians claim, then why did Eve even want to eat the fruit?

It was forbidden. Plenty of examples in life when the best is thrown away for the worst. We humans are quite good at it.

25. ON THE BODY OF CHRIST
1.) God?s flesh was known as Jesus.
2.) Flesh cannot enter into Heaven (according to Paul)
3.) God is no longer Jesus.
4.) Jesus doesn?t exist.

I've noticed several questions that hinge on Paul saying that the flesh can not inherit heaven. But the part that is ignored is Paul's phrase: "spiritual bodies" in the same section of 1 Corinthians.

Post resurrection accounts in the Gospels have Jesus with a body but not like the one we are used to as he goes through walls, can appear and disappear, etc. It's been changed in some way.

In any case I'd take Jesus to be God made visible to us. I think traditional trinitarian language falls apart here because I think any creature including us, is God made visible even if only partial. But in the person of Jesus this was unique and powerful enough to have created a church and a religion.

26. Theists seem to give the answer of "everything is part of gods big plan".

They'd b wrong. God doesn't desire every action which happens (if one looks at the Bible this appears to be the case).

27. Christians say that God is NOT the author of confusion. Can you say, Tower of Babel?

Thus trying to stop the biggest confusion: the ones where we think we are God.

28. 29. Assume the literalness of the flood story. It's not to be assumed.

30. What do Muslim women get in Paradise? -

Am not familiar with Islam enough

31. In the "Last Days" Jesus is supposed to appear in the clouds. How are the Christians on the opposite end of the world going to see him?

Metaphor that you're pushing too far

32. The Bible says that God is a jealous God . How is this an example of a moral absolute of which man is supposed to follow? - IG ON GOD`S JEALOUSY
1.) "God is love." 1 John 4:8.
2.) "Love is not jealous." 1 Cor 13:4
3.) "I, the Lord thy God, am a jealous God." Exodus 20:5.
4.) The Christian god cannot logically exist.
(NOte: Basically love is NOT jealous, yet god is jealous, then God can`t be love. But if god IS love he cannot be jealous. Be he is.)

To love is to particularlize, to make unique. So a father is not a father, some generic category but your dad, the one who played baseball with you, the one who was there for you. Not any given dad but the one which is yours, is the one in which you love.

We love individuals, not general categories. To the degree that God individualizes us for God's self it'd be a similar process. An unfair jealousy, an abusive one is out. But a recognition of an exclusive relationship, that's bound up in love.

33. A true Muslim man...

see aswer to 30

34. If the earth was covered by a complete global flood,..why are there many completely unique animal species in Australia that are found no where else indigenously on the earth?

Because the flood story is regionally based. It's how these stories develop.

35. If god is omniscient and " god is love," why would he allow a child to be conceived, knowing that that child would one day reject him and spend eternity burning in a lake of fire?-

God is not omni whatever and there's no indication that hell is conceived in this manner in the whole of the Bible

36. Revelations is supposed to take place on Earth. What if we colonize the moon or Mars or inhabit a self-sustaining space station? Do we escape "judgement"? -

Whatever is the end of history, however it's conceived it's included the whole of creation. It's doubtful that humans on our plant are the central drama of God's work, though we may be the central drama of our own sacred writings (big shock)

37. Isaiah 40:28 says, "...the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is he weary?" If this is true, why did God rest on the seventh day?- IG

Because Isaiah's conception of God is bigger, less human like than what we find in Genesis

38. If God is calling these people "home", why are we putting the murderers of these victims in prison? How can we punish a man or woman for doing God's will?

Because such a phrase is inane. And no God doesn't wish everything that happens to happen. (again, looking at the Bible this seems to be evidently so)

39. Does God have a gender?

No. But it's helpful to use male and female language for God, because personal language speaks of relationships more readily than impersonal language (how does one pray to an it?)

40. Why can't we wait until we get to Heaven to worship God ? Why would it be too late? - IG

Because we'd be robbing ourselves of the beautiful and the sublime in this life. Why do that to ourselves?

41. What is the purpose of prayer? What can a finite being on Earth possibly tell an omnipotent, omniscient deity that he doesn't know already? - IG ON PRAYER

Looking at your proof: of course God does change (remember Abraham dickering with God over Sodom's fate). So I'm not going with the your premise here. In any case, prayer has as much to do with us (meditation anyone?) as God.

 

42. Some say Jesus was the all-knowing God. Jesus would have known then that when he died he'd be in heaven in less than 3 days to rule. If Jesus is alive and ruling today, what did he sacrifice? --

Unless he wasn't all knowing.

43. God knows that men are sinners, untrustworthy and evil, why does God leave it up to fallible man (clergy..etc) to teach others about his word?

The purpose of relating to God is not heaven, hell, etc. It's so we can enjoy and love God , this world and one another. How to do that, we get from any number of ways. God is more creative than using just humans to communicate, though in some cases it seems to be the most effective means.

44. Did Adam have nipples?

Genesis is myth (anyone read the Oddysey?) But I imagine that the authors of Genesis thought that Adam had nipples, since we do, since Adam is more protoypical human than anything else.

45. How did Adam and Eve know it was wrong to disobey God if they hadn't eaten of the tree of knowledge (of good and evil) yet? You can't blame them if they didn't know. -

Knowledge is not always required to be held culpable. Especially when they were told not to eat of this tree. Do we ever have full knowledge of the reprecussions of our acts either way?

46. If God has such a tremendous problem with uncircumcised penises,

It's not so God can recognize Israel's choseness. It's so Israel can recognize it.

47. Did Noah have fish onboard?

First find me the ark and then I'll tell ya

48. Why does the omnipotent, omnipresent God need help from man or angels to spread his word or do acts?

We had this question already. God needs help because we persons need each other to be persons.

49. How did Jesus ascend to Heaven in the Flesh when Paul says that flesh cannot inherit the kingdom of Heaven? (1 Cor.15:50) -

Cause he had spiritual flesh?

50. If God wants us to live right and choose "the good," why did he create evil? (Isaiah 45:6,7)

Because he didn't (Plato's Republic)

51. Speaking of a spiritual war between Heaven and Hell, if this is true does God have limitations of power?

Yes

52. The Bible is full of phrases beginning with, "and the lord saw". Didn't he know before hand? -

Maybe not

53. How can a psychologist condone belief in something not proven to exist

A lot is weighted on the question "proven" here it seems. Also this points to the way that often pyschology measures illness by the way it allows people to soocially interact with others. That is illness it as much determined by society than any physiology.

54. If Christians say they know God exists and that he will work miracles, what do they need faith for? Faith is not knowing. -

Because faith is not without knowledge. It's a way of approaching knowledge.

55. Brain, or shall I say, body transplants, will eventually be possible, where would the soul be then? Where is the soul? -

The soul is your personality, what makes you you

56. If God really wants us to know him, why doesn't he place the knowledge of him in our minds at birth?

Some might argue that god does do this. At least the need to worship, the need to connect to something greater seems there. We do seem to be religious animals of a sort.

57. If God was Jesus' father (not Joseph), then why is Jesus' family tree traced through Joseph? -- Cyndy Hammond]

Good question. Don't know.

58. What image of God was man made from? Couldn't have been a moral one or physical one. - IG

Why not moral? Even if what we do is less than God, if it is of the same kind just to a different degree, than we have something that connects us up with God.

59. Why can't God appear before everyone at the same time? Everyone in the world would then "know" he exists and not have solely "believe".

Because God is an evaluative term. God is everywhere, people use various terms for such a reality though. The only question is how sufficiently wide is that which is being called the divine (some gods are rather limited)

60. So since Jesus has not returned the "Law" is still in effect, so why aren't we still...

Read Paul on the law.

61. If there is freewill in Heaven

Why would there be freewill in heaven?

62. Why does God have a plan? Man is limited in power so we make plans because we are not all-knowing nor all-powerful. If God has a plan, isn't he reduced to a mere finite being? - IG

Yes.

63. How could the all-merciful God watch billions of his children burn for eternity? -< this is geared to those that believe in a fiery hell. I am well aware that not all Christians believe in a fiery Hell.]

I'm one of those Christians who don't believe in a fiery hell.

64. Before reading and writing were invented (5000BC), on what basis did God use to judge the people who died before the Hebrew and Greek text (BIBLE) were written?

Judgement occurs when moral conscience begins. Not with a book.

65. Many Christians tell me that I will "burn in hell". If I have a soul, how can a soul burn? Aren't souls non-physical entities? - IG

Good question.

66. How can one hold to the barbaric belief that something has to DIE in order to appease a god for a bad deed? -

Lots of people die, sacrafice themselves for some good to happen. That happens all the time (from Socrates to WWII). Probably works in a similar fashion for Jesus.

67. Why does SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome) occur? Why would God allow a baby to live for such a short period of time?

Not sure and I don't believe that God would want such a thing to occur. (and I don't believe in the omnis)

68. If Jesus was nailed and died on Friday evening, and walked out of the tomb on Sunday morning, where's the 3rd NIGHT he predicted?

Friday, Saturday, Sunday?

69. Many Christians claim that hell is merely existence outside of God ?s presence (C.S. Lewis among others). If this is the case, then Jesus could not have descended into hell (being God Himself).

Jesus is not God. Jesus participated in the life of God, reflected God to others, and was abandoned (or felt as such on the cross, thus descending into a hell of a sorts)

70. it is estimated that anywhere from 14 to 50 percent of all pregnancies end in miscarriage. Seeing this is all part of God 's plan

I don't believe everything that happens is God's plan

71. What if, when you get to Heaven, you saw God causing pain and suffering out of anger or for the purpose of entertaining himself.

God is only God because God is good. If God ceased to be good than God would cease to be God.

72. In Leviticus, the bible condemns homosexuality..

I belong to a denomination that recognizes that love, mutuality, etc. can be found in gay and lesbian relationships. So admittedly I haven't given much thought why folks cherry pick Leviticus

73. Christians will tell you that if a baby dies it goes to heaven. Why then are they so against abortion?

I think I have noted that the purpose of life is not the afterlife or at least they cannot be divorced. If our significance after death is immortal, having a full life in the here and now is tied up with this.

74. If one could prove to you incontrovertibly that Jesus and God were all human fabrications would still believe? And why? -

I don't think proving or disproving Jesus's existence would matter. What matters is the way this story is picked up in the creation of a given religious tradition which has resources for living today. As for God, I believe in the reality of God, but yes all the language we use comes from us.

75. It is often said that God allows evil because one could not meaningfully appreciate good without experiencing its opposite.

I don't buy that claim myself

76. Bible literalists want you to believe that God's Word in the Bible is meant to be taken literally. If this is the case, why was Jesus fond of explaining things in parable and metaphor?

Good questions. Probably because Jesus wasn't a literalist.

77. Liberal Christians say some parts of the Bible are literally true, but much else is to be interpreted figuratively as allegory. How do you know which is which? What distinguishing criteria are used? How can you be certain "God" is a literal and not a figurative concept?

You pick up literary clues from the texts, when you're reading myth, parables, history, visions, and the like. One would use the same standards as reading any other ancient text. I have no doubt that our concepts of God are limited, reflect more of us than God. But I do believe there is a saving reality (and that we do experience this) even if it is bigger than our concepts (which is why myth and figuritive language sometimes is the most potent thing we have)

78. Consciousness is the result of a physical brain, how could God being metaphysical be said to be conscious or sentient without having a brain?

Big question. This ties into a later question, what is God made of. If God has a physicality, perhaps it's the form of an energy. Energy can have a direction, a teleos without self consciousness (in the manner that you're thinking of it).

79. Considering how Leviticus is considered old law, and that Christians do not obey it anymore, why do they always use it to defend homosexuality being an "abomination"? -Bohorquez

Good question. Wish my fellow Christians would stop doing that

80. If God is omnipotent and he has a plan

Don't believe in ominipotence

81. The large majority of people who have ever existed could not have learned of the Bible or Jesus Christ.

God is bigger than a religion

82. The above arguments also apply among different sects of Christianity

see answer to 81

83. Is it reasonable for the Creator and Ruler of such a vast Universe to be preoccupied with the sexuality of a species living on a tiny little planet?

No. But it is important for ourselves to be concerned about it, since sexuality is so basic to human experience.

84. If the Christian god was all loving and all knowing why did he let religious figures such as Mohammed or Gautama Budda be born,

Because there is no such thing as a Christian God. There's only God. There are Christian descriptions of God, but one ought not to confuse our descriptions with the real thing

85. If one is obliged to follow all the teachings of the bible then why is engaging in homosexuality or adultery any worse ...

homosexuality is not a problem. The moral dimension enters in not when it comes to gender but rather the specifics of a given relationships (is there love, mutuality, building each other up, etc?)

86. Exactly how did the alleged worldwide flood kill off all the world's sea creatures?

Maybe there are evil fish? Ever watch Eddie Izzard?

87. Why did this alleged god create humans as an animal form of life that gets sick and dies and experiences pain and has a limited mind...

Because God is working with the materials at hand, against a form of inertness which seems to limit the possibilities of creativity

88. If a god is omnipotent how did 'it' fail to foresee that Satan would turn against 'it'? --

God aint ominpotent

89. What is a god supposedly made of? --AI

I think in the end, to talk about God, is in the west to talk about what acts in a way which transforms us, saves us, sustains us. Some folks don't use God language. That's fine.

The question is what language can identify such a reality/ies in a manner that solicits the right response from humans. I think of the Christian tradition as one answer (being worked out) to this question. I think getting a conversation across a wide range of religious and philosophic traditions to this question is key.


WordGFunk
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 I believe that I am

 I believe that I am correct in stating that this is an argument regarding whether or not god exists, whether or not there is a spirit realm?   The atheists say there is nothing  and the Christians (not the only theists)  are fighting madly to disprove them. okay, cool, I'm down with that.  One glaring detail that I just can't help but point out is that the ONLY argument I have found thus far for either side is all about something in the Bible.  Since when is that the ultimate deciding factor in whether or not there is anything after death? 


dchernik
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Quote: Quote: ...no evil

Quote:
Quote:
...no evil will in the end be revealed as gratuitous or without a good purpose

Evil is therefore good. My friend, God makes the terms good and evil meaningless.

Just because evil may lead to some good does not mean that if good had been chosen instead of evil, an even greater good would not have resulted. When I say that "even your mistakes were somehow necessary or unavoidable" I mean that these mistakes could have been avoided perhaps only due to divine intervention. But God cannot dispense with our own strivings, because it is exerting our own powers that makes us who we are. Even mistakes cause us to learn, perhaps the hard way. Human beings are self-correcting. But be careful here: one good that can come out of evil is the punishment of sinners, in which God's justice is manifested. Be careful that you do not add to the glory of God in that way.


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Ok, no response to my first

Ok, no response to my first 10, but that's ok, it was the holidays and I'm sure everyone else was as distracted as I was.

 

Quote:
11. In II Kings 2-23/24 we read about God sending 2 she-bears to attack children for calling the prophet Elisa bald, which he was, the bears killed 42 of the children. Was this a good thing to do? -- Brandon and IG[Note: I have heard some argue that the boys were a gang. So?! I didn't read anywhere in that passage where they laid a finger on the guy . Also, what kind of bears are these that can kill 42 kids? Super Bears? Surely the kids had to be running away.]

They're Celestial Bears. Obviously they were using their once/day Smite Evil ability as per the template in the Monster Manual. As for WHY... you assume god to be 'good', but 'good' in the judeo-christian sense that 'sin = evil' can more accurately be described as 'obedient to god'. If obedience to god defines goodness, then god cannot possibly deviate from goodness, no matter how inconsistent his actions. In short: Why do you assume that a supreme being must be benevolent in order to exist? Reading the Old Testament gives a far stronger assertion of an Authoritarian god, not one who is benevolent toward all. If you obey, you are favored. If you disobey or make trouble for those who are obedient, you are punished. Period.

Quote:
12. I have often heard from many believers that even Satan has a presence in the church, which is why even in church people can still have impure thoughts. If Satan can find his way in the church, how do Christians know that Satan didn't find his way into the Bible and twist the whole book? After all, men did vote on which books would make the Holy Bible. - The Infidel Guy

I would posit that any good christian would have to assume that he did, and thus would need to trust less the words on the page, and more their own direct relationship with their god. As with other questions, this has nothing to do with whether or not god actually exists.

Quote:
13. Why did God allow Lot and his daughters to escape from Sodom and Gomorra when he destroyed it only to later have Lot and his daughters engage in incestuous fornication. (Genesis 19:30-36) - Disillusioned [Note: To have intercourse with daddy dearest of course.]

Keep in mind that despite the common usage that 'sodomy' has, and despite the claims of clergy for generations, many scholars believe that the 'sin' of Soddom and Gomorrah was not sexual deviancy, but lack of hospitality. For a culture on the edge of the desert, where water and arable land are far rarer commodities than they were in europe and greece (where the modern interpretations were developed), hospitality to travellers was of the utmost importance. The willingness to aid one another's survival was part and parcel of the underpinnings of civilization. In that respect, if Lot was spared because he showed welcome, not abuse, to the servants of god, then the question is moot, as the two occurances are highly different.

Even if not, though, why would Lot and his daughters have been punished in Sodom for actions taken after they escaped its destruction? Unless you completely invalidate free will, there's no way to prevent someone who was just spared destruction based on his virtue from falling into sin immediately after. Noah, after all, got plastered as soon as he got out of the boat, where he'd been trapped with his family and a massive amount of animal dung for 40 days and 40 nights. Frankly, if it was me, by night 38, I might've been the only living thing still ON the boat.

Quote:
14. Genesis 1:28-29 shows that man and all the animals were first created herbivorous. Most young-earth Christians (ones that believes the earth is less than 10,000 years old) say that the fall of man resulted in carnivorous animals ( hence death of animals). So, why did God punish the animal kingdom, making animals kill and devour each other because of man's mistake? Or, if you're an old-earth Christian (one that accepts that animals existed on earth for billions of years before man came on the scene) then how come fossils show carnivorous animals existed before man? - http://www.caseagainstfaith.com/contact.htm.[/quote]

There are a couple of ways to look at this. The simplest is that the entire creation story is metaphoric, and thus the whole 'knowledge = sin = death' thing is a simplified way of saying 'things would be just peachy if you didn't know they weren't, dammit'.

Quote:
15. Many Christians believe that God is a thinking being, that he solves problems and makes a way for them when troubles come. Does God Think? If God is thinking, did he know his thoughts before he thought them? If so, again, where is his freewill and how is God thinking at all if everything seems to be one uncontrollable action/thoughts. - The Infidel Guy [Note: I'd say a God cannot think at all. To do so, would strip him of omniscience. Thinking is a temporal process.] ON GOD'S ATEMPORALITY
1.) God, an atemporal being, created the Universe.
2.) Creation is a temporal processes because X cannot cause Y to come into being unless X existed temporally prior to Y.
3.) If God existed prior to the creation of the Universe he is a temporal being.
4.) Since God is atemporal, God cannot be the creator the Universe.
[Note: I guess I should also note here that a timeless being would be without the proposition of past, and future. But to be omniscient, God must know the past and future. Hence a God that is atemporal and omniscient cannot logically exist. Smiling]

Many christians also believe that god cares about more than if they obey or not. God's benevolence is not a requirement for his existence. As for free will, omniscience, and linear thinking... you again limit god to a four-dimensional existance. What prevents god from existing in far more dimensions, and so having an axis of progression (which in 4 dimensional existence is 'time' ) that functions differently?

Quote:
16. I have often heard that faith is all that is neccessary to believe in God and accept the Bible as true. If this is true aren't all supernatural beliefs true since they also require "faith"? - IG ON FAITH
1.) A prerequisite to believe in a Faith is faith.
2.) Having faith is all that is required to accept a Faith (belief) as true.
3.) All Faiths are true.
[Note: Of course all Faiths aren`t true, but this is the only logical conclusion that can be drawn from a person that states that, "Faith" is how one knows God.]

This question is horribly, horribly flawed. You want a logical fallacy, this is it. If all that is required TO ACCEPT a belief structure is faith, that does not necessarily make that faith, that belief structure, or the believer, right. Nor does it automatically make them wrong. In the end, since there is no conclusive way to prove ANYTHING, all that is required to accept the existence of reality is faith, faith in your own mind and senses. But as schizophrenics and people suffering from delusions and hallucinations can show, our minds are not always honest with us. There is no conclusive way to prove that anything exists, except the individual perceiving reality. All that you perceive, these words, this computer, even your own heartbeat, could all be your mind lying to you.

And yet, you believe it. Why? What if you're wrong? Does belief make it so?

No-one, save those trying to use it as a means to refuse the potential existence of divinity, claims that faith in a belief makes the belief true. What is stated is that all you need in order to have faith... is faith. It doesn't make you right. Best you can do is find one you feel in your reptile brain to fit you, and believe in it. And that includes atheism, which is, after all, just another faith structure. Without a conclusive proof of the absence of divinity, you believe it. And there can be no conclusive proof of the absence of divinity, because a negative can never be conclusively proven. It can only be shown that the presence of a divinity is still unproven. As with any other theory, including gravity, it remains a theory simply because all of the observations until the end of time aren't in yet, so we don't know that it won't be disproven somewhere down the line, and a new theory developed that more accurately fits the observations.

Quote:
17. Why didn't God just kill Adam and Eve after the Fall and start from scratch? Actually, if God is all-knowing wouldn't he know that man would need to be killed eventually anyway, (the biblical flood)? Why create Adam and Eve at all? - ALSCARLATA@aol.com and infidelguy@infidelguy.com ON THE GARDEN OF EDEN
1.) God is omniscient (all-knowing).
2.) God knew that before he created man that they would eat of the tree of knowledge.
3.) God placed the tree of knowledge in the Garden anyway.
4.) God wanted sin to enter the world.
[Note: If God didn`t want sin to enter the world, why create Adam and Eve at all? He knew what would happen. Why place the forbidden trees in the Garden in the first place?]

Boredom? Sadism? Insanity? We go right back to the answers for #14 and #11 there: probably a metaphor, but regardless, there's no requirement of a divine benevolence toward all, and ample indication of divine malevolence toward those who are disobedient.

Quote:
18. If a spirit is non-physical but the human body is physical, how does a spirit stay in our bodies? - IG ON SPIRITS
1.) Spirits are not physical entities.
2.) Brains are physical entities.
3.) Past experiences are stored in our physical brains, we call that, Memory..
4.) Injury can damage portions of the physical brain that store memory and can alter or erase memories completely.
5.) If human spirits exist... after death, spirits can have no memory.
[Note: Some will say the spirit stores physical memories as well, but if true, the spirit would have to be physical at least to a degree. How could a non-physical spirit store, physical memories?]

What if the spirit/soul/essence of divinity/whatever is anchored through a dimension other than the basic 3 spatial and 1 temporal that we perceive? Current physical theory all but demands these dimensions exist, and interact with us constantly. Being unable to measure a thing does not disprove the thing.

Quote:
19. Does God know his own future decisions? If God is all-knowing he actually shouldn't have any decisions to make at all. Nor can he choose anything over something else. For that would mean that he is neither omniscient nor omnipotent. In fact, he can't even think if this is the case. Since he can't DO anything, he might as well not exist. - IG ON GOD'S IMMUTABILITY - Unchangingness
1. If God exists, then he is immutable.
2. If God exists, then he is the creator of the universe.
3. An immutable being cannot at one time have an intention and then at a later time not have that intention.
4. For any being to create anything, prior to the creation he must have had the intention to create it, but at a later time, after the creation, no longer have the intention to create it.
5. Thus, it is impossible for an immutable being to have created anything (from 3 and 4).
6. Therefore, it is impossible for God to exist (from 1, 2, and 5) - Theodore M. Drange

Again, I refer you to my response to question 15, which poses that the axis of progression for any extant divinity may not be the same as ours.

Quote:
20. If God is all-knowing, how could he be disappointed in His creation? -- Pm453ca@aol.com [Note: Indeed, wouldn't God know that before the creation of our Universe what creatures would disappoint him? That being the case why create those creatures at all? Also, in knowing absolutely the behavior of humans before creation, God cannot be disappointed either... for this world is exactly as he has planned it to be. If it's not, why create us at all?]

Maybe god's an optimist who doesn't necessarily believe in his own omniscience or infallibility? Hey, nobody said god was sane. Eye-wink

 

"You've got to remember that these are just simple farmers. These are people of the land. The common clay of the new West. You know... morons." - The Waco Kid


WTF
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KNOW THE DIFFERENCE!

These are absolutely ridiculous questions FOR A THEIST?

99% of these questions are based on a biblical GOD!

Well guess what brainiac... NOT ALL THEISTS BELIEVE IN THE BIBLE or ANY "revealed religion" for that matter!

KNOW THE DIFFERENCE!


American Atheist
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Sapient

Sapient wrote:
GuentherBacon wrote:
I did my taxes in a half hour. Smiling And give me that girl's number. I'd like to rationally respond to this picture. (entirely kidding if she's a girlfriend of someone on the board)
Actually I believe she's recently single, if she has stayed single. She's from New York, profile here. PM her yourself. Eye-wink My taxes, corporate and personal are about a 20-30 hour ordeal.

 

Link doesn't work. Sad


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Just because evil may lead

Just because evil may lead to some good does not mean that if good had been chosen instead of evil, an even greater good would not have resulted.

Well, does the good that evil leads to ever outweigh the evil?

You believe that an all good God allows a state of affairs to exist where the maximum good is not achieved.  This makes no sense. Why wouldn't an all powerful, all good God result in the maximum of good at all times? 

When I say that "even your mistakes were somehow necessary or unavoidable" I mean that these mistakes could have been avoided perhaps only due to divine intervention.

So, there is no free will in these cases and therefore I can't be held accountable for these errors?

But God cannot dispense with our own strivings, because it is exerting our own powers that makes us who we are.

I thought God was all powerful. What do you mean he "can't" dispense with our strivings?

Even mistakes cause us to learn, perhaps the hard way.

An all powerful God could cause us to learn the easy way.

 Human beings are self-correcting. But be careful here: one good that can come out of evil is the punishment of sinners, in which God's justice is manifested. Be careful that you do not add to the glory of God in that way.

How am I supposed to know what a sin is? I don't accept the Bible as revelation. And why shouldn't I add to the glory of God by sinning? The more glory for God the better, right?


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Athiests question these...

1)      Why don’t creationist accept evolution? It is so well proven, it must be obvious to them.

2)      This is tricky because it does not say the cherubim is visible. Angels being pure spirits would not have a bodily form unless they needed too have one.

3)      I do not know where the statement “It has been proven…” came from. I am aware that current evidence may suggest that humans might have originated in Africa. One would have to find the first human skeleton to know precisely where humans originated. To my knowledge people have found the “earliest know” skeletons but none have clamed to have the first.

4)      God does not erase their memory. Happiness does not cease to be happy because others are sad. How can you enjoy any meal while knowing that others are starving?

5)      The question actually misunderstands eternity. God does not react to events in a past/present/future, He acts only in an eternal now. His emotions are anthromorphisms used by the holy writers to describe the appearances of his character.

6)      You are right God should not have created you.

7)      Man is a being with the capacity for the near infinite. The soul can be eventually be infinitely good or it can be infinitely evil. Because the evil of a soul deprived of even the most natural of graces (love, prudence, knowledge) would be infinite and in light of eternal goodness eternally painful, God imposed a temporal limit on evil and suffering and this place is called hell. (This I know merits further discussion, but I want to keep answers brief.)

8)      I am not a Muslim, I would not know.

9)      St. Denis did not reattach his severed head but rather walked with it. I do not know why he did not reattach it, possibly because it would just be chopped off again. Miracles happen all of the time, its just that atheists are always trying to find the rational explanation for them (Note: I did not say logical or right answer merely the rational one.) http://www.mcn.org/1/Miracles/

10)  According to Christianity, God did come and try to convert the world, he was then killed. Why doesn’t God do what you think God should do? MAYBE BECAUSE HE IS SMARTER THAN YOU.

11)  I do not read that the Lord sent them, just that they came. I do not think the original Hebrew would support that translation.

12)  This question sounds remarkably similar to one the Mormons ask. BTY have you read God’s remarkable message for you in the Book of Mormon?

13)  Why God allows the continued existence of those that ask stupid questions is one that I am still struggling with. Again I do not know the mind and heart of God, If I did I would know why He created the person who made this list.

14)  Genesis 1:28-29 only implies that MAN was herbivorous. I also do not understand young or old earth creationists.

15)  God does not think in a deliberative sense, therefore the question is irrelevant.

16)  I don’t know, wouldn’t this also exclude all non-belief. You must believe that you are rational to know anything, and without this you cannot know you know something. Also all faiths do not require faith, some just require ritual (such as Judaism.)

17)  Why don’t you kill all those that offend you, or at least banish them from your sight? Because God actually cared about Adam and Eve personally, He knew they could repent. Why did he kill people in the flood? I do not know, He could have been eliminating their evil on earth while allowing them to be saved from shoal when Christ descended there.

18)  I think this question misunderstands the nature of spirits. They do not stay with our bodies, they are part of us. They are not vaporous entities that have to “stay with” our bodies, they are us. I don’t know how to describe the immaterial to a materialist.

19)  Does this make any sense? I think other answers respond to this.

20)  I don’t know that God is disappointed. But if He is it is because He is the only one who knows what each person could be and what they actually are. To answer the other question I can only pray: “Dear Lord, why did you make Pm453ca@aol.com?”

  
 

 


Drew_theist
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Questions about God?

I think it would be more honest to call this forum Questions about Christianity and the bible...


the_lots_of_fri...
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some answers for your questions.

  Well i guess you guys are loving all the media attention you are getting and enjoying making some folks mad, but unlike some i actually enjoy a good debate. So naturally i was excited to find that you had a forum on your website. Let me first start off by saying that i am a christian and i believe and i am here to convert you to christianity as i have done so many others in the past. Why because you ppl are not using your brains. As the saying goes you think you know but you have no idea. If only you knew the things that i do you would do well and believe likewise. Anyways i wish i could figure out a way to copy paste your questions so i could answer every one of them one by one & believe me i do have an answer for every one of them, it is nothing that i have not thought about before and i have not debated against and im sure that my answers are more righteous than your questions. ok here is how i will answer them i will put *1.) to represent your question and my answer will be what i give you. etc. so lets begin.

1). if jesus fufilled the O T law why didnt the jews accept him? well lets see according to the bible some jews did accept him many as a fact but it was the leaders of that time who were corrupt and labeled him a heretic. They spoke lies about him and condemned him to death the ones that did not accept him were deceived according to the bible.

2). Gee i dunno you stumped me maybe because the cherubims kills everyone who comes close to it and then takes their body and moves it to an undisclosed location...Or maybe because the cherubims are no longer needed and the tree is gone which is the tree of life which could be in heaven or who knows where we do know that the scripture does say that in the end when its all said and done God will give right to eat the tree of life. ...Or maybe no one hasnt found this tree because God hasnt let them. Good question.

3).  Prove that it has proven that man came out of africa lol first off. secondily didnt adam and eve move off to east? REMEMBER this God drove adam and eve from the garden. there is no way to fully prove where man came out of just for the simple fact that there could be older bones still out there. God you ppl are retarded.

4).  heaven is God's throne as the scripture says ppl will live in Christ's eternal kingdom which is the new earth revelation 22 and God will live with them and Christ will reign in righteousness this is the truth and no one that does evil will enter therein. Also they will not remember their former lives the bible says that the former things will be passed away. no you are still you your memories do not make you. That would be like saying that when someone gets alzheimers that they cease too be but they are still alive and didnt the scriptures say that if any man is in Christ he is a new creature? 

5). Why cant God have emotions humans do so do all creatures that is really stupid but werent humans created in the image of God? with free will, emotions etc... i will tell you why because he is God if humans can how much more could a god?

6).  hell is the grave and the bible says that the lake of fire which i think you are confusing with the hell was created for the devil and his fallen angels, but you must understand that the lake of fire is where you will spend eternity if you reject his son. It is very fair in my opinion because you do evil...The wages of sin is death and the lake of fire is eternal death. Death the grave is not the end there is a judgement too come. yet you are free to choose. do good while you live.

7).  why is hell illogical because you make such a claim? as illogical as you think it is it is still logical too me. God is a God of love true but also one of judgement every secret thing every sin against him your own blasphemies you will give an account of i swear by it in this world and the one to come. eternal life/eternal death he is worthy to make such judgements.

Cool. i am not a muslim i believe that mohammads  teachings are false. and that he is the false one prophecied that would come into the world.

9).  what a selfish reason not to believe. Bad things happen to good ppl, sometimes and we do not know what will even happen tomorrow but i can assure that nothing happens without God letting happen. Jesus healed many and his apostles likewise the bible does say that in 1 cor 12 that every believer has a spiritual gift and some have a gift of healing but some say it is doctors that it is referring i do not agree it wouldnt be a spiritual gift then it would be a carnal one or fleshly. perhaps though there are some that heal others, i have not eyewitnessed it, but i believe that if it be God's will it could happen.

10). why does God entrust the spreading of his word too sinners/humans? i like the parable christ gave of the rich man and lazarus. Jesus told them that the rich man begged for someone to send lazarus to go to his family that they would listen to him and it was told to him that they had moses and the other prophets if they did not believe them, neither would they be persuaded though one rose from the dead. God also gave us his witness which i believe is his word and spirit and the spirit bears witness with us that we are the children of God. God did do it himself too he sent jesus christ.

11). This is a hard one to answer i am not gonna lie some would say that the little children were actually young men but the bible describes as little children. All that i can say is i will not judge God because i am not more righteous then he. the bible does not record them as a gang. however the bible also says that they mocked him so to say that he cursed them for being bald is not entirely true. they could have said some really evil things or kept on and on, and then said well leave baldy. 

12).  The infidel guy satan has no place but what ppl give him. commit thy way unto the lord and thy thoughts shall be established. as the scripture says. Satan has no power and is cast down from heaven if ppl are thinking bad thoughts it is only because they choose to do so. If you are a believer you are not a slave to satan anymore and that is false doctrine what you have heard. Jesus said light has no fellowship with darkness and it is true because if something is lit up it is not dark. Also what fellowship does righteouness have with wickedness? ppl like to make excuses for their sins that they willingly commit. 

13) Well this is what the bible says that they escaped and his daughters got him drunk to his unawares because they felt sorry for him and then had incest with him. Just a classic example of sin but out of it came a race of ppl so you could very easily be one of his ancient ancient relatives yourself. as far as why did God allow it? because we have free will to do good or evil and God will recompense. 

14).  Wow 2 questions in one well here is the first one God cursed man and everything else it is recorded in the scriptures because of man's sin the whole planet and everything in it is cursed hence it dies. i believe the animals were herbavores like man God however did give man dominion of the animals and over everything on the earth to keep it. I am not a young age creationist or old age i just believe the bible and i believe that there are periods in time that were not recorded so who could know by the bible how old the earth truthfully is?

TBC at a latter date because if i responded to all these it would take all nite


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the_lots_of_friends_u_didnt_

the_lots_of_friends_u_didnt_have wrote:

Anyways i wish i could figure out a way to copy paste your questions so i could answer every one of them one by one & believe me i do have an answer for every one of them, it is nothing that i have not thought about before and i have not debated against and im sure that my answers are more righteous than your questions. ok here is how i will answer them i will put *1.) to represent your question and my answer will be what i give you. etc. so lets begin.

If you click on "quote" insitead of reply, it will include all of the text of the old post "tagged" to appear as a quote.

the_lots_of_friends_u_didnt_have wrote:

3). Prove that it has proven that man came out of africa lol first off. secondily didnt adam and eve move off to east? REMEMBER this God drove adam and eve from the garden. there is no way to fully prove where man came out of just for the simple fact that there could be older bones still out there. God you ppl are retarded.

Currently, the fossil record shows the oldest specimens showing up in Africa (to 130k years) then in the Middle East (about 100k), then Asia, Europe and Australia about (60-40k) and in the Americas (20k to 13k). Studies of mitochondrial DNA also gives clues as to when different groups were isolated from one another and/or branched off.

the_lots_of_friends_u_didnt_have wrote:

4). heaven is God's throne as the scripture says ppl will live in Christ's eternal kingdom which is the new earth revelation 22 and God will live with them and Christ will reign in righteousness this is the truth and no one that does evil will enter therein. Also they will not remember their former lives the bible says that the former things will be passed away. no you are still you your memories do not make you. That would be like saying that when someone gets alzheimers that they cease too be but they are still alive and didnt the scriptures say that if any man is in Christ he is a new creature?

Have you ever had a relative get Alzheimers? They don't cease to be, but they are definitely less like the person you knew them to be.

So who will we be in Heaven? Can we make decisions? Will we have free will? What will we do there?

And if we won't remember this life at all, then why send souls down here? What do we gain during our time here?

Is it experience? Well, that would be lost when we forget who we were, right?

Is it some sort of proving ground? If god knows how everything is going to turn out and which souls go to heaven and which to hell, then why bother with the whole mess in the first place?

the_lots_of_friends_u_didnt_have wrote:

5). Why cant God have emotions humans do so do all creatures that is really stupid but werent humans created in the image of God? with free will, emotions etc... i will tell you why because he is God if humans can how much more could a god?

Sapient's question mentioned why it doesn't seem to work. Emotions are reactionary. If god knows what is going to happen, why does he become angry or jealous? If everything is part of his plan, then how can anyone do anything to "anger" him? He planned it, didn't he?

the_lots_of_friends_u_didnt_have wrote:

6). hell is the grave and the bible says that the lake of fire which i think you are confusing with the hell was created for the devil and his fallen angels, but you must understand that the lake of fire is where you will spend eternity if you reject his son. It is very fair in my opinion because you do evil...The wages of sin is death and the lake of fire is eternal death. Death the grave is not the end there is a judgement too come. yet you are free to choose. do good while you live.

A coerced choice is hardly a choice at all.

the_lots_of_friends_u_didnt_have wrote:

9). what a selfish reason not to believe. Bad things happen to good ppl, sometimes and we do not know what will even happen tomorrow but i can assure that nothing happens without God letting happen. Jesus healed many and his apostles likewise the bible does say that in 1 cor 12 that every believer has a spiritual gift and some have a gift of healing but some say it is doctors that it is referring i do not agree it wouldnt be a spiritual gift then it would be a carnal one or fleshly. perhaps though there are some that heal others, i have not eyewitnessed it, but i believe that if it be God's will it could happen.

How is wanting god to reattach someone else's limb selfish?

 

-Triften


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sapient Your questions are

sapient

Your questions are not new. Millions have asked multitudes of questions over the years.

Where did I come from, where am I going, is thought of time and time again. You are not alone in your quest, and I know you will find the answers to all your queries some day. Knowingly or not, you are causing many people to pick up the Bible and search for some of the answers on their own.

Many fortunes on your way to the answers.


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rr are religous bigots

rr are religous bigots wrote:
sapient

Your questions are not new.

Actually some of them are, but even if they are all old, I fail to see how saying 'they are not new' actually does anything to answer them, (unless by 'old' you mean 'refuted ad nauseum')

Then again, theist answers don't answer them either, so at least your response has the benefit of brevity.

PS Are you religious? If so, don't you find it odd to be tossing the claim of religiousity as an insult?

Those who know the good, do the good. - Socrates

Books on atheism.


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The Catholic Answer to Multiple Questions

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RhadTheGizmo
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Wow. This thread is getting

Wow. This thread is getting a bit messy since people are being forced to address a bunch of different answers each with there own assumptions.

The questions seem to presume that all Christians run into the problem when in actuality only those Christians that believes as the respective questioner assumes they believe, would have a problem.

"Christianity" only requires that one believe in Jesus as the Christ.  From that commonality Christian denominations sometimes disagree on the other things fundamentalities, as well as what else they feel to be tennants of the Bible.

Whether it's metaphoral.  The definition of Christ.  The existence, or lack thereof Hell. Etc. Etc. Etc.  In anycase.. I answered from my particular perspective in another thread.

Just.. thought I'd state this observation in case no one had stated it already. 


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dmar198 wrote:

dmar198 wrote:


6. Why would God create a place such as hell to torture sinners forever when he foreknew who would disappoint him? - IG [Note: Some say you have a choice, but this misses the point. If God hates sin so much, why create Adam and Eve when he knew they'd sin? The only conclusion I can come up with, if Yaweh exists, is that he wanted sin to enter the world.]

God gave Man the choice to accept Him or deny Him. While He does not influence our choices, He knows them. He lets us discover them ourselves. This does not miss the point, and I will explain a little more clearly. God created Adam and Eve because He wanted company in Heaven in His own image, and He loved these future beings so much that He let them on Earth first so that they could choose Him or not. When He created them, He allowed for the possibility of their denial of Him, but He did not force them into it. They could have chosen Him or denied Him. God knew their actions, yes, but not in the same sense that we understand knowledge.

God "wanted" company? A "want" requires a deficiency. I god wanted something, then he would be less than perfect. If he's less than perfect, why call him "god"?

dmar198 wrote:

7. "God is all merciful," we hear quite often. Wouldn't it be more merciful of God to simply snap sinners out of existence rather than send them to hell? Or better yet, since he's all-knowing, not allow them to be born at all? - IG

ON GOD'S LOVE & HELL

1.) God's love is superlative.
2.) God's love of man exceeds man's love of self.
3.) Man's love of self prohibits torture.
4.) Considering God's greater love for us, Hell (eternal torture) is illogical.

God's mercy is infinite towards us. To snap someone out of existence is not merciful. This is denying them their choice. If someone chooses to go to Hell, and all who sin necessarily do, it is to deny them their choice. This would not be mercy. In His infinite mercy, He therefore sends them to Hell, and gives them what they want.

In his infinite mercy, he sends people into eternal torment for crimes/grievences that are not eternal?

dmar198 wrote:


9. Why haven't we seen God reattach severed heads, restore someone who was burned alive or regrow amputated limbs? Surely these would be miracles difficult to deny. - Adam Majors and IG [Note: The typical answer is that man doesn't dictate God's actions. The conundrum here however is that, if God wants us to "know" him, then surely feats such as those mentioned above would be happening all over the world. Until they do, I'll remain an atheist.]

You haven't seen God perform these extreme miracles because you are not looking hard enough. Gemma di Giorgi had her eyesight restored, though she has no pupils (--(clipped, see original post)--). This is quite on par with limb regeneration. All four gospels recount the time when Simon cut off the High Priest's servant's ear (See Lk. 22:50, Jn. 18:10, Mt. 26:51, Mk. 14:47). But Luke 22:51 recalls that Jesus also restored his ear. Though citations for other examples currently escape me, I have heard of more.

I was unable to find any reports from doctors regarding the woman's sight. Do you know of any?

Regarding ear reattachment, using the Bible to prove God requires you prove the Bible to be true.

dmar198 wrote:



12. I have often heard from many believers that even Satan has a presence in the church, which is why even in church people can still have impure thoughts. If Satan can find his way in the church, how do Christians know that Satan didn't find his way into the Bible and twist the whole book? After all, men did vote on which books would make the Holy Bible. - The Infidel Guy

Jesus promised that Satan would never prevail against His Church (Matthew 16:18). Temptation is NOT only from the devil, though, and the lusts of the flesh can assail you even in the holiest of places. Satan didn't find his way into the Bible because God promised in Timothy (2 Timothy 3:16) that it is from Him, and not from the devil. (This is not circular reasoning because the Catholic Church has been around since the time of Christ and has continuously proclaimed that this verse is truth, and the devil cannot have perverted the Church to make a false claim such as that would be. We know he cannot have because the Catholic Church has remained a beacon of undiluted light throughout history, having only sound doctrine and good morals. Its saints and miracles have been testimony as to its validity, for those of you who want proof outside of Scripture.)

Then how does the Catholic Church know that Satan has not find his way into the Bible?

A beacon of light? The Inquisitions were examples of that light?

 

dmar198 wrote:

 

22. In the watchmaker analogy, a watch is used to show us intelligent design and compares that to the Universe as evidence of design. We know watches are designed because we have past experience with watches, as well as with other man made objects. My question is: What Universe is the Intelligent Design proponent using to compare this Universe with to draw such an analogy? What God did he see create a Universe? - IG

You missed the analogy. The point is not that we can compare watches and see their design. We see their complexity and know they are designed. In the same way, the universe is (almost) infinitely complex, and is evidence for a designer. It isn't the comparison of degree of complexity, but the fact that it is complex itself.

But the analogy fails because we can't compare universes. This is the only one we've seen and we have non other to compare it to. It's a known phenomenon that complex behaviors can arise from simple rules. This is called emergent behavior. Complexity alone does not mean an intelligent creator is involved.

 

dmar198 wrote:

24. If the garden of Eden was a perfect paradise as xians claim, then why did Eve even want to eat the fruit? Wouldn't a perfect place provide everything a person would want or desire and thus she would want nothing? - keyser soze [Note: Why were the trees there in the first place? Of course they love to throw the serpent into the equation. But ummm..who let the serpent into the Garden?... and why would God create such a creature knowing he would cause man's fall? Hmm.. God must have wanted the fall to happen.]

Eve wanted to eat the fruit out of curiosity, being tempted by the devil. There was nothing lacking in the Paradise. It was an external intrusion by the serpent that caused temptation to enter. This intrusion brought vacancy, and exploited it through Eve to tempt her into an unnatural desire. The tree was there to give them a choice to accept God or Man. They chose man. God created the devil for the free will thing (again). God did not force the devil to deny Him. The devil chose that. God knew, but He gave the devil a choice nonetheless, and the devil could have chosen to accept God. God let the serpent into the garden because otherwise it would have been denying him his free will, and denying Adam and Eve the right to choose Good or Evil. God did not want the fall to happen.

Where did this serpent come from? God created him, knowing what he would do and what would happen. Why did God create him at all?

 

dmar198 wrote:

25. Why would an all-powerful god become flesh in order to sacrifice himself to himself so that his creation might escape the wrath of himself. Couldn't god, in his infinite wisdom, come up with something a little more efficient? - Omphaloskeptic2@aol.com ON THE BODY OF CHRIST
1.) God?s flesh was known as Jesus.
2.) Flesh cannot enter into Heaven (according to Paul)
3.) God is no longer Jesus.
4.) Jesus doesn?t exist.

(Note: Many at this point will state that the spirit lives on so therefore Jesus lives. This really depends on what you believe about Jesus. Is Jesus the son of God or God in flesh? If Jesus is merely the son there is no problem.However, if Jesus ?is? God himself, we do. You see, Jesus is called Jesus because of the attribute of Flesh. If Jesus = God (who is spirit) then the entity known as Jesus ceases to exist. The flesh/body of Jesus, no longer exists and the spirit of God is still the unchanging spirit of God. No Jesus at that point. The Flesh, called Jesus, is dead.)

An all-powerful God chose the only option. He sacrificed Himself for us. That's how much He loves us, and infinitely more so. God, in His infinite wisdom, chose this option because it was the most efficient and only choice. God's Word was incarnate as Jesus. Mere Human flesh cannot enter Heaven because all Humans sin and taint the flesh. Jesus was divine, though, and did not sin. Therefore, His flesh was not tainted. Therefore, He could enter Heaven. Jesus is both the son of God and God made man, not just one or the other.

How could God sacrifice himself? Is he dead? What did he give up? If Jesus is in heaven which is supposed to be the best thing ever, than what could he possibly have given up?

 

dmar198 wrote:


37. Isaiah 40:28 says, "...the Creator of the ends of the earth, fainteth not, neither is he weary?" If this is true, why did God rest on the seventh day?- IG

God wasn't weary when he took rest. He didn't fainteth, either.

Then why rest at all?

 

dmar198 wrote:

38. Everytime I go to a funeral the preacher and guests always say that " God " has called that person to Heaven or they say, " God said it was time to come home", or some such variation. If God is calling these people "home", why are we putting the murderers of these victims in prison? How can we punish a man or woman for doing God's will? - IG

Murder is not God's will. It may have been God's will that they died, though. God does not want anything unnatural. He only calls people home through natural means, but this plan is often interrupted by people who murder others.

People can interrupt god's plan? Does that mean he isn't omnipotent?

dmar198 wrote:

42. Some say Jesus was the all-knowing God. Jesus would have known then that when he died he'd be in heaven in less than 3 days to rule. If Jesus is alive and ruling today, what did he sacrifice? -- Cyndy Hammond

He underwent torture and death on a cross. The resurrection He did because He wanted to show that He is divine. No one else in Scripture or elsewhere has raised themselves from the dead. That's why it is proof of His divinity. He sacrificed the worst pain ever. He bore the guilt of all of our sins. Sins sins put one in Hell, he essentially bore Hell for all of us. That's pretty harsh.

If Jesus bore all of our sins, some of which can send us to hell for all eterinity, then why did Jesus only go to hell for 3 days?

dmar198 wrote:

49. How did Jesus ascend to Heaven in the Flesh when Paul says that flesh cannot inherit the kingdom of Heaven? (1 Cor.15:50) - IG [Note: Some say, well Paul said that and not Jesus. Yet they quote Paul when it suits there purposes.]

God's Word was incarnate as Jesus. Mere Human flesh cannot enter Heaven because all Humans sin and taint the flesh. Jesus was divine, though, and did not sin. Therefore, His flesh was not tainted. Therefore, He could enter Heaven. Jesus is both the son of God and God made man, not just one or the other. Also, Jesus did not "inherit" the Kingdom of Heaven. He created it. It was His in the first place.

Is commanding others to kill a sin?

Luke 19:27 "But those mine enemies, which would not that I should reign over them, bring hither, and slay them before me."

dmar198 wrote:

50. If God wants us to live right and choose "the good," why did he create evil? (Isaiah 45:6,7) Not to mention he already knows which people are not going to choose "the good" so why create those people in the first place? It seems that many people are born to go to Hell. - IG ON HELL
1.) God is all-knowing.
2.) Before I was born God knew I wouldn?t believe in him.
3.) I was born to go to Hell.
(Sure you may say I have a choice, but I think I`ve proven already that I really don`t. I`m simply fulfilling the will of God by being an atheist aren`t I? If I`m not, I shouldn`t exist: For God would have known that before I was created that I wouldn`t believe in him.)

God created the devil, and by the devil evil came to exist. So God created evil, but indirectly. Evil exists so that Man can choose to accept evil and deny God. If evil did not exist, then we would not have that choice. Then, we could only go to Heaven. That would not be loving, because it would not be giving us a choice. No one was born to go to Hell. Everyone, even the writer of this question, can accept God and go to Heaven. If God did not allow you to be born because of your future choice, then He would not have given you a choice. But He did give you a choice, and you can still accept Him. You are not fulfilling the will of God by being an atheist. You should exist, because there is still time for you to accept God. God knew you don't currently believe in Him right at this moment, but that doesn't mean you don't have the choice.

 

"Love me or suffer" is not a choice, it's coercion.

dmar198 wrote:


53. How can a psychologist condone belief in something not proven to exist, when people are put into mental institutions on a daily basis for the same thing? i.e. aliens, fairies, imaginary people (Multiple Personality Disorders..)? - Dan Denton [Note: I'm sure that some of the pious believe that they are improperly placed there as well Dan. Smiling]

Psychologists know that people often need something strong and unchanging to hang on to. Fairies and imaginary people/aliens don't qualify for this, but God does.

Why can't faries be strong, eternal, and unchanging?

dmar198 wrote:

63. How could the all-merciful/loving God watch billions of his children burn over and over again for eternity? - IG [Note: Of course this is geared to those that believe in a fiery hell. I am well aware that not all Christians believe in a fiery Hell.]

He can't stand it. But He gives us what we ask for, and many many people ask to burn over and over again in Hell for eternity. They ask for it by sinning.

So, if I wanted to be all-loving, I'd let my children play in traffic if they really wanted to?

 

dmar198 wrote:

66. How can one hold to the barbaric belief that something has to DIE in order to appease a god for a bad deed? -- Nickolaus Wing [Note: Because an old book says so Nick.]

That's not a barbaric belief; it is still believed today in every culture. Something has to suffer to appease for a bad deed. If you steal your siblings' toy, you get grounded as punishment. It is suffering, though on a very small scale. Multiply that times infinity for all the bad deeds we've done to God, and the only option is that He delivers us by sacrificing Himself.

If God is all-powerful, how can we do a bad deed to him? How can our actions harm him in any way?

 

dmar198 wrote:


69. Many Christians claim that hell is merely existence outside of God ?s presence (C.S. Lewis among others). If this is the case, then Jesus could not have descended into hell (being God Himself). As a result, are you sure your sins are forgiven? - Byron Bultsma

All true Christians understand that if you are in Hell, you are outside of God. Whether that is in a different place, or just a ceasing of existence, is a matter of debate.

I think what the question is asking is: If Jesus was God, how could he have gone outside of himself? You've mentioned that he's divine, so no matter where he went god would be there to. So, how can he ever be away from God?

dmar198 wrote:

72. In Leviticus, the bible condemns homosexuality as an "abomination", giving some Christians a reason to hate, harass, torture and kill gays and even picket their funderals with " God hates fags" signs. In the same book of the bible the eating of shellfish is equally an "abomination". Are these Christians planning to go after the patrons of Red Lobster next? - buckcash@buckcash.com [Note: hee-hee, that's all I can say. Jewish Law states that eating Fish without scales is an abomination and thus the Shark is one among the list. However, sharks do have scales, Placoid scales, one of the many reasons why a shark is called a Fish .]

The bible condemns homosexual acts, not homosexuality. There are some people who are naturally homosexual because of genetic mistakes, which all ends up being because of the Fall of Adam and Eve. Anyway, some people are homosexual through no fault of their own, and have a very difficult cross: They must refrain from committing the sin of homosexual action. The whole shellfish thing was a command that was fulfilled, and now no longer applies, though it hasn't disappeared (See question 60)

How do you know what has been fulfilled and what hasn't? Does Jesus specify "shellfish is okay now but gay sex is still bad"?

 

dmar198 wrote:


74. If one could prove to you incontrovertibly that Jesus and God were all human fabrications would still believe? And why? - LOGICnREASON [Note: If you say yes. Then you are not concerned with the truth, you simply WANT to believe; and if you WANT to believe, indeed, there is nothing anyone can tell you..]

If someone could prove that God does not exist, then I would not believe. I can't speak for other people, though. I would not believe because belief without any evidence is beyond my comprehension.

Please, prove to me that unicorns do not exist.

If I claim that unicorns exist, it's not your job to prove that they don't. It's up to me to show that they do.

If you claim that god exists, it's not someone else's job to prove that he doesn't. It's up to you to show that he does.

dmar198 wrote:

 

83. Is it reasonable for the Creator and Ruler of such a vast Universe to be preoccupied with the sexuality of a species living on a tiny little planet? -- lpetrich

I'm not quite sure of the question, but I think you want to know why we have two sexes. It is because Adam wanted a partner.

It may also be that you want to know why God is sexist. He isn't, so that question doesn't apply.

I think the question is "Why is god so pre-occupied with what two consenting adult men do with each other?"

 

-Triften


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The Catholic Answer to Multiple Questions

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