How can God know pleasure from pain?

AZSuperman01
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How can God know pleasure from pain?

I've had numerous Christians over the years tell me that God doesn't stop all pain and suffering in this world for two reasons.

1) Pain and suffering help us develop as people.

2) Without pain we can't recognize pleasure.

The first issue only works if God is not omnipotent... If God is truely "all-powerful" then he can help us develop just as well without allowing young children to be raped and tortured. It also has some dire implications for God; I'll cover those in a minute.

The second issue may be true. People tend to enjoy good weather more after a storm; but again, this is only an issue if God is incapable of making us recognize pleasure without feeling pain... this would make God something less than "all-powerful."

So let's concede for a moment that both issues are valid. God is not all-powerful, therefore the two points are true. What are the implications for God? Well first, it means God has not been able to develop the way humans can. In fact, since he lives in Heaven (a world without pain) he can not be as developed as the humans who have grown as a result of undergoing some particularly nasty events.

It also means God can't recognize pain. Having existed in Heaven forever, he has no concept of pain. Perhaps that explains why Hell is so bad... he just doesn't realize how bad it is. Having never been burned alive, he has no knowledge of the pain he will cause the majority of humanity to undergo by sentencing them to an eternal barbaque.

Yeah, yeah... Jesus came down, and he suffered. He was tortured and killed... that would give God some perspective, if Jesus and God are the same entity. The Bible takes both sides on this issue (like most issues) and says God and Jesus are both the same and separate. So it's impossible to say for certain whether God experienced any benefit after birthing Jesus.

My point is simple. If pain is a neccesity for character development, then God must have no character. God has never faced an obstacle, or over come a challange, or experienced defeat. A human who overcomes great strife and becomes a better person because of it is greater than God.

If pain is neccessary to experience pleasure, then God can not experience pleasure. Having nothing to compare them to, even the glowing streets of Heaven would be dull and unimpressive.

"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?"
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GuentherBacon
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I don't think God

I don't think God understands how happy it will make me to go to Hell.

I have such a sick fetish for third-degree burns, weeping and gnashing of teeth.

Say unto thine own heart, "I am mine own redeemer."
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absolutely, but there is

absolutely, but there is also a third proposition here. god gives us pain and suffering to test our faith. I find this also fallacious, because...why would a god need to test our faith, if he truly existed? Wouldn't a loud booming voice heard all over the world intermittently assuring us he's still there be better than raping babies? or cancer? or malaria, or any of the other millions of diseases and genetic disorders out there? not to mention war, and human hate? Does this mean god cannot control his own creation? Why would a god want to test our faith anyway? is he a sadist? Is he enjoying watching us die and suffer for the ultimate price? "Yeah, way to go praying while you were in agonizing pain with cancer. You win eternal salvation, please proceed to the gates for your heavenly prize." I mean...that's what I don't understand about, testing faith. Why must we be tested in the first place? Does god not have the power to create humans that are inherently faithful?

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LeftofLarry wrote:Does god

LeftofLarry wrote:
Does god not have the power to create humans that are inherently faithful?

Get ready for the standard "that would make us robots" response.

That response also has its own errors. If God can't prevent people from doing evil without making them robots, then won't everyone in Heaven be robots? If not, then sin is possible in Heaven. What happens if someone sins in Heaven? Are they condemned to Hell? Is your pass to Heaven a temporary one, which lasts only as long as your actions and thoughts are pure? Will the population in Heaven quickly dwindle to zero as everyone eventually offends God in some way and ends up in Hell?

Sure, you won't want to sin in Heaven. You probably don't want to sin on earth ether... but you you. If God prevents you from sinning in Heaven, then you don't really have free-will.

If it's possible to create a world in which the inhabitants will have free-will, and will ALWAYS choose to do good, then God should've started with that design instead of condemning most of humanity to an eternal torture chamber of his own design.

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wow... i dont know what

wow...
i dont know what christian's you've been talking to! As far as why God allows evil and suffering, the answer does not lie in "testing faith," or "so we can know pleasure."

the answer is simple: evil exists in the heart of man. for God to rid the world of evil would be to rid the world of humans. therefore, it is actually an act of mercy that he lets evil continue** for he is sparing humanity's existence. this is the orthodox teaching of evil and man's situation.

But God cannot be blamed for evil existing in man's heart. it was man's conscious, willful decision to disobey. God did not curse us, Adam did. I'm not big on the whole "free-will" concept, i think the term "liberty" is much more appropiate. Carl Trueman at Westminster Theological Seminary says that "the possibility of evil is something that God must allow if human beings are to have any significant freedom. Evil and suffering are, if you like, the price worth paying for liberty."

Augustine is quoted saying, "Evil is not a created thing, but spoiled goodness made possible by the free moral agency of rational creatures." he continues that this not only absolves God of creating evil but also allows Him to show the world His love by bringing Christ into the world.

Could God have made humans with the ability to always WILL to do good? Maybe. But he didn't. And I believe he had a perfect reason for giving us liberty. Would you rather have a dog that would run to you when you called its name, or a dog that you would have to go and force to sit at your feet? he desires for us to love him in return, honestly, without force or coercion.

AZSuperman01, there used to be sin in Heaven. Remember, sin originated in heaven with Lucifer. So yes, you could sin in heaven (hence the fallen angels). And the devil could roam in and out of Heaven until Christ provided atonement. This is why Christ's blood is so remarkable. It not only cleansed the earth and humans, but heaven as well. Sin can no longer enter through the gates.

You are wrong to conclude that we wouldn't have liberty in heaven. Those who love God are being conformed to his will daily - not by force - but because they desired it. At death, we are completely sanctified and glorified, our will's are finally conformed to him entirely. This is how we will live in heaven. Therefore, there is still liberty, but there is no sin. We will be rightly related to our Lord.

** Even though evil is a present reality, the bible teaches that Christ's redemption has reversed the fall of man. Evil is now ceasing to continue and peace has come!


Hambydammit
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Quote:the answer is simple:

Quote:
the answer is simple: evil exists in the heart of man. for God to rid the world of evil would be to rid the world of humans.

Um, would you not be dense for a second? If God created man, and made his heart evil, then he's a nasty dude. To rid the world of evil would mean to rid the world of his own creation. To create evil is... evil.

Quote:
it is actually an act of mercy that he lets evil continue

Ok, seriously. Make sense of this to me, please. So if I know that my priest is butt-fucking altar boys, it is an act of mercy for me to let that continue?

Mercy = the permission to let evil exist. Bullshit.

Quote:
I'm not big on the whole "free-will" concept, i think the term "liberty" is much more appropiate

What? What??! What in the world do you mean? I don't get it.

Quote:
Augustine is quoted saying, "Evil is not a created thing, but spoiled goodness made possible by the free moral agency of rational creatures." he continues that this not only absolves God of creating evil but also allows Him to show the world His love by bringing Christ into the world.

Have you thought about this? Have you ever seen those big whirlpool looking things at the mall? You know... the things where you put the penny in, and it spirals down until it disappears down the center. If I put a penny in, I know it's going to go down the hole. If God created man, and knew that his decisions would lead him to hell, he's no different.

Disagree with that all you want, but give a rational reason for it, ok? How is it different?

Quote:
Could God have made humans with the ability to always WILL to do good? Maybe. But he didn't. And I believe he had a perfect reason for giving us liberty. Would you rather have a dog that would run to you when you called its name, or a dog that you would have to go and force to sit at your feet? he desires for us to love him in return, honestly, without force or coercion.

Stupid, stupid, stupid. Number one: Give me some proof that your god exists. Number two: Give me proof that a god who created hell for the billions of people who haven't believed in him is a good entity. Number three: Give me a reason to accept the validity of your dog analogy. It's lame.

Oh... Number four... explain to me how threatening me with eternal damnation isn't force or coercion.

Stupid, stupid, stupid.

Seriously... the boredom that comes from listening to the same arguments over and over is, well... boring. Throw me a bone, man!

Are you going to join the ranks of the deserters? Many have failed to provide evidence. Will you be one?

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adamgrant wrote:wow...

adamgrant wrote:
wow...
i dont know what christian's you've been talking to!

I believe it's your standard run of the mill voters Eye-wink

adamgrant wrote:

As far as why God allows evil and suffering, the answer does not lie in "testing faith," or "so we can know pleasure."
the answer is simple: evil exists in the heart of man.

Ok, refresh my memory here.. who created the heart of man?

adamgrant wrote:

for God to rid the world of evil would be to rid the world of humans.

Interestingly enough, "god" gets rid of humans all the time, miscarriages, disease, genetic disorders, natural disasters, ...etc..etc..etc...
However, what you are saying here is that humans are intrinsically and fundamentally evil. So...if that is the case...is earth fundamentally hell?

adamgrant wrote:

therefore, it is actually an act of mercy that he lets evil continue** for he is sparing humanity's existence. this is the orthodox teaching of evil and man's situation.

But it makes no sense, 2 things here:

1. Presumed God does not commit acts mercy, for allowing 5 year olds to die of cerebral malaria only because he allowed them to have the misfortune of being born in poverty in Africa and for him to have created a parasite that is spread through mosquitos, why make parasites? why make mosquitos?

2. Why would this Presumed God allow evil (humans) to continue to live if, they are in fact intrinsically evil? This is a paradox if you believe your presumed god is an all loving wonderful omniscient, omnipotent being. How is this merciful? The orthodox teaching of evil and mans' situation seems more like a scapegoat strawman argument, baseless and without rationality.

adamgrant wrote:

But God cannot be blamed for evil existing in man's heart. it was man's conscious, willful decision to disobey. God did not curse us, Adam did. I'm not big on the whole "free-will" concept, i think the term "liberty" is much more appropiate.

Sure you can blame your presumed god, if he/she/it in fact exists. Again, refresh my memory, who was it that created man's ability to be conscious and willful and able to make decisions?
You cannot have your cake and eat it to.
Either God created man, in his image, therefore, by following your rationale, god is NOT the righteous nice being you seem to make him out to be, because if that's the case than there is no way humans can be fundamentally evil, because that would make your presumed god fundamentally evil, OR man was just simply not created.

adamgrant wrote:

Carl Trueman at Westminster Theological Seminary says that "the possibility of evil is something that God must allow if human beings are to have any significant freedom. Evil and suffering are, if you like, the price worth paying for liberty."

And why should there be a price for liberty in the first place? This is all conjecture without proof. Who is Carl Trueman to say that evil must exist, is he god? Perhaps he's had a conversation with God and god told him so? This is a complete copout. It does not answer the question. God, in his omniscient, omnipotent self, could have created a utopian world where there would be no need for suffering, unless he created evil and suffering to fulfill is theocentric ego? I mean...come on.

adamgrant wrote:

Augustine is quoted saying, "Evil is not a created thing, but spoiled goodness made possible by the free moral agency of rational creatures." he continues that this not only absolves God of creating evil but also allows Him to show the world His love by bringing Christ into the world.

This quote implies that God, then is not the omniscient, omnipotent being everyone claims him/her/it to be. Does it not? Perhaps then, you're saying controlling evil is then beyond his capabilities? If that is the case, could you not then question the very ability for him to have created the world? Perhaps another God created the world but this god wants your patronage? Spoiled goodness in and of itself is created....for with out spoiling and without goodness you can't have spoiled goodness.

adamgrant wrote:

Could God have made humans with the ability to always WILL to do good? Maybe. But he didn't. And I believe he had a perfect reason for giving us liberty. Would you rather have a dog that would run to you when you called its name, or a dog that you would have to go and force to sit at your feet? he desires for us to love him in return, honestly, without force or coercion.

So you are equating us with pets? So then, presumed god desires for us to love it, isn't pride and vanity a sin? I guess presumed god can break his/its/her own rules?

adamgrant wrote:

AZSuperman01, there used to be sin in Heaven. Remember, sin originated in heaven with Lucifer. So yes, you could sin in heaven (hence the fallen angels). And the devil could roam in and out of Heaven until Christ provided atonement. This is why Christ's blood is so remarkable. It not only cleansed the earth and humans, but heaven as well. Sin can no longer enter through the gates.

So then, once we die our sould then no longer are free? So free will is only a condition of earth. And why is that? So are we here on earth as a test? Why put us here to begin with anyway? and another follow up question, why can we (our souls) remember anything from our former (non earth life) before we are born? Also, if our soul is created at conception, then, my third question is this, why is god actively creating souls...hundreds of thousand of them a day, if in fact, the apocalypse is coming, hwat happens during the apocalypse for women in labor? WHat happens in the apocalypse to those embryos? Do their souls fly up to heaven too? or are they damned? They haven't had a chance to Prove their free will, so therefore how would those sould be treated?

adamgrant wrote:

You are wrong to conclude that we wouldn't have liberty in heaven. Those who love God are being conformed to his will daily - not by force - but because they desired it.

But as you said, if no sin is allowed in heaven how can we have liberty in heaven. If we all want to be conformed in heaven, then how can there be free will. How do you know then, that out of the hundreds of millions of souls in heaven that not one wants to sin? Is Satan and the fallen angels the only free will libertarians in heaven? But no longer will anyone want to sin in heaven? What do you base this on? Do you know this for a fact?

adamgrant wrote:

At death, we are completely sanctified and glorified, our will's are finally conformed to him entirely. This is how we will live in heaven. Therefore, there is still liberty, but there is no sin. We will be rightly related to our Lord.

Again, how can you be so sure, maybe when you get to heaven you wouldn't want to be there anyway, at which point, would you have the free will to leave?

The argument makes no sense adamgrant, not rationally. Occam's Razor my friend.

adamgrant wrote:

** Even though evil is a present reality, the bible teaches that Christ's redemption has reversed the fall of man. Evil is now ceasing to continue and peace has come!

But the fall of man is in direct cause wiht the creation of man. Evil is not ceasing to continue...look at the wars disease etc...

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darth_josh
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Hmmm. Scripture would seem

Hmmm.

Scripture would seem to even support the idea that your 'god' derives pleasure from pain suffered by others.

Revelations
4:11 Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created.

Unless of course you have a contradictory scriptural reference?
Just ask and I'll help find you one. lol.

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darth_josh
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I hope that didn't violate

I hope that didn't violate rule #3. If it did then I apologize.

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AZSuperman01
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adamgrant wrote:wow... i

adamgrant wrote:
wow...
i dont know what christian's you've been talking to! As far as why God allows evil and suffering, the answer does not lie in "testing faith," or "so we can know pleasure."

It's been my experience that there are as many different versions of Christianity as there are Christians. They Bible says God created evil (Isaiah 45:7) but it never says WHY... so individual Christians are forced to creativly come up with an answer of their own. Adamgrant, you are no different.

adamgrant wrote:
the answer is simple: evil exists in the heart of man. for God to rid the world of evil would be to rid the world of humans. therefore, it is actually an act of mercy that he lets evil continue** for he is sparing humanity's existence. this is the orthodox teaching of evil and man's situation.

At least we know why evil exists in the heart of man... he was created in the image of God (Gen 1:27) - the very being person who created evil (Isaiah 45:7)!

We can't be expected to rise to a higher standard than our creator can we? We were made in his image - his murderous, jealous, spiteful image.

adamgrant wrote:
But God cannot be blamed for evil existing in man's heart. it was man's conscious, willful decision to disobey. God did not curse us, Adam did.

Have you actually read Genesis? I mean no disrespect by asking... it's just your statement is in complete contradiction with the story. You see, Adam and Eve were created ignorant. They had no way of knowing good from evil, right from wrong, obedience from disobedience. When God gave them the command not to eat from the tree, they had no understanding of what it meant to obey or disobey God. Yeah, I know - God threatened to kill them if they ate the fruit, but that doesn't change the fact that they had no way of knowing the difference between obedience or disobedience. It was only AFTER they ate the fruit that they gained the ability to "willfully disobey."

On a side note - Have you ever stopped to wonder why God wanted Adam and Eve to remain ignorant of right and wrong? What happens when we gain the ability to recognize good from evil? - We create morals -

I find it suspicious that your God (who later demands human sacrifice, genocide, and unquestioning devotion) originally created mankind without morals. If mankind had remained ignorant, God could've continued to order mass murders, no one would've considered them immoral. God could've continued to demand human sacrifice - no one would've cared. Eden could've been a continual blood bath filled with God-ordered torture and death - and no one would think twice... because they wouldn't have morals of their own - they wouldn't know the difference between good and evil.

Why would God create mankind without morals, unless he didn't want his creation to judge his actions immoral?

adamgrant wrote:

I'm not big on the whole "free-will" concept, i think the term "liberty" is much more appropiate.

A rose by any other name...
adamgrant wrote:
the possibility of evil is something that God must allow if human beings are to have any significant freedom.

Then humans have no freedom in Heaven...

adamgrant wrote:
Evil and suffering are, if you like, the price worth paying for liberty."

But the price is no longer needed once you reach Heaven - then (according to you) you have liberty without evil and suffering. You can't have it both ways. Either evil and suffering are needed for liberty (which means either evil exists in Heaven, or there is no liberity) or they're not - which means they're not needed here either. Either way you've got a problem.

adamgrant wrote:
"Evil is not a created thing, but spoiled goodness made possible by the free moral agency of rational creatures."

When God said he created evil (Isaiah 45:7), he must've meant he spoiled the goodness of rational creatures. I wouldn't put it past God to spoil the moral agency of rational creatures - he created them without morals to begin with.

adamgrant wrote:
this not only absolves God of creating evil but also allows Him to show the world His love by bringing Christ into the world.

Nope - doesn't absolve God of anything. God created man. God created man with evil in his heart (in the image of God). God created evil.

Bringing Christ into the world was God's way of using a thimble to bail water out of a sinking ship. Billions upon billions of people are doomed to spend eternity in a torture chamber (designed and created by God) ... instead of coming up with a way to save everyone, God decides to kill himself and only save those people who truely believe he sacrificed himself to himself.

adamgrant wrote:
Could God have made humans with the ability to always WILL to do good? Maybe. But he didn't.

And that is proof enough that your God is evil. If he had the ability to create a world where people wouldn't be murdered, raped, tortured, or cut-off on the freeway - but didn't - then he is responsible for the evil and pain which is a direct result of his decision.

adamgrant wrote:
And I believe he had a perfect reason for giving us liberty. Would you rather have a dog that would run to you when you called its name, or a dog that you would have to go and force to sit at your feet? he desires for us to love him in return, honestly, without force or coercion.

I don't know how you trained your dogs, but I didn't need to allow other dogs to bite mine in order to get it to come when I call her.

The very fact that you compare humans to God's pets demonstrates the low value you place on human life. Do you believe your purpose in existing is to wag your tail at God for eternity? To place your head in his lap and hope he scratches behind your ears? To collect his newspaper and his slippers? What a waste of human intellect. If the mind survives the grave, I would hope it would be put to more use than slobbering over a diety who believes morals can only be sustained with bribes and torture.

adamgrant wrote:
AZSuperman01, there used to be sin in Heaven. Remember, sin originated in heaven with Lucifer. So yes, you could sin in heaven (hence the fallen angels). And the devil could roam in and out of Heaven until Christ provided atonement. This is why Christ's blood is so remarkable. It not only cleansed the earth and humans, but heaven as well. Sin can no longer enter through the gates.

I don't believe I've ever read the verse which says Satan can't enter Heaven anymore because of Christ's atonement. But even if he can't get back in, what's to stop someone who's already inside from sinning? And what happens to that person if they do?

Can you imagine everyone sitting around, hoping God will scratch them behind the ears, when suddenly a hole appears in the cloud everyone is sitting on, and one of the people you're sitting with falls into a fiery pit. For a moment Heaven is filled with the sound of billions of people having their toe nails pulled off with pliars. Little did you know, but your friend had made the heinous error of thinking an impure thought. The hole closes just as quickly as it had opened... And all the heavenly hosts go back to happily waging their tails at God, and hoping he'll throw them a treat.

Of course, if you really do have liberty in Heaven, then the fiery hole would appear frequently... as slowly everyone would eventually do something wrong - afterall, our hearts are evil. Shocked

adamgrant wrote:
You are wrong to conclude that we wouldn't have liberty in heaven. Those who love God are being conformed to his will daily - not by force - but because they desired it. At death, we are completely sanctified and glorified, our will's are finally conformed to him entirely. This is how we will live in heaven. Therefore, there is still liberty, but there is no sin. We will be rightly related to our Lord.

Let me get this straight... your will is completely conformed to the will of God - meaning you make NO decisions for yourself - and you think this is liberty? If you choose to make the same decisions as God, then that may be liberty - as long as you still have the choice NOT to agree with God.

If a world can exist where everyone freely chooses to do as God wills, then why in the world didn't God start there?

Why woud God want those who are willing to do as he wills to suffer on earth before being allowed to live in the perfect peace of Heaven?

adamgrant wrote:
** Even though evil is a present reality, the bible teaches that Christ's redemption has reversed the fall of man. Evil is now ceasing to continue and peace has come!

Evil is ceasing to continue? And has been since the time of Jesus? Perhaps you should tell that to the people who lost family members on Sept. 11th.

"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?"
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AZSuperman01 wrote: It's

AZSuperman01 wrote:

It's been my experience that there are as many different versions of Christianity as there are Christians. They Bible says God created evil (Isaiah 45:7) but it never says WHY... so individual Christians are forced to creativly come up with an answer of their own. Adamgrant, you are no different.

oh, AZ. you really don't know me at all! I'm very aware of the Isaiah verse, it was my favorite verse for a very long time. i liked to quote it to other christians to get a rise out of them and see how they reacted and if they even knew it was there. I have many different views of the Bible/God/Christianity than the mainstream, pop culture christians you are familiar with. I enjoy helping them realize things that are in the bible so that they can learn how to defend them.

When i read that verse, my mind was totally changed. God created evil! What a radical concept. But, if God did create evil, does that make him evil? Does it mean that he does evil things? See, the Bible teaches a Creator/Creature distinction. God is not what he creates. If he created all things, God cannot be all things. Or else, he would merely be a part of creation, and not a creator at all. When I write a song, do I become the song? No. But I wrote the song by my pleasure and for a purpose. As the artist, I have the full authority to do whatever I choose with that song. So it is with God. IF he is the creator of all things, then he would - logically speaking - have the right and would be just in doing whatever he pleases. If God really did create evil, then surely he had a reason, and it doesn't necessarily mean that he himself is evil. if that verse is true, there still is no contradiction or fault with the doctrines of the Bible.

But after studying for awhile I learned that evil cannot be created (maybe it can in terms of action) but evil is not a substance or a disease floating in the air. Evil is the absence, or perversion, of good. I also realized that the word 'evil' as translated in the King James version is more than likely an improper translation. The first half of the verse is comparing opposites - light and darkness. to flow along properly, it would seem that the word "peace" should be opposed by "war" rather than "evil." Or, if the message of the verse was that God creates evil, the writer might've used the opposite "good" in place of "peace." I suppose we would have to do an in-depth study on the original words in their original languages to decide the proper translation. But this is exactly why my NEW King James Bible says "calamity" in place of Evil.

Quote:

At least we know why evil exists in the heart of man... he was created in the image of God (Gen 1:27) - the very being person who created evil (Isaiah 45:7)!

We can't be expected to rise to a higher standard than our creator can we? We were made in his image - his murderous, jealous, spiteful image.

oh, AZ. please. If you are going to use the Bible's teachings to refute it, please make sure you actually know the teachings. we were created in the IMAGE of God - *note* "IMAGE".. Not exact copies. We possess only certain attributes of his. Which do include love, hate, anger, mercy, etc. etc. He didn't create us with evil in our hearts. We chose to be evil. Quit blaming everything on God and take up some responsibility.

And we are not expected to rise to a higher standard than him! we can't even rise to his own standards in the first place! but christ did and that's why he imputes his righteousness to sinners.

Quote:

Have you actually read Genesis? I mean no disrespect by asking... it's just your statement is in complete contradiction with the story. You see, Adam and Eve were created ignorant. They had no way of knowing good from evil, right from wrong, obedience from disobedience. When God gave them the command not to eat from the tree, they had no understanding of what it meant to obey or disobey God. Yeah, I know - God threatened to kill them if they ate the fruit, but that doesn't change the fact that they had no way of knowing the difference between obedience or disobedience. It was only AFTER they ate the fruit that they gained the ability to "willfully disobey."

Again, please know what the Bible teaches before you try to refute it. I've had to restate this very simple and common fact more than once on this forum, but here goes one more time:

Adam and Eve weren't ignorant. The Genesis account has Adam and Eve ruling in the garden, obeying every command of God's. He gave them strict rules, and told them the consequences if they disobeyed. They knew the difference between right (obeying God) and wrong (disobeying God) even though they hadn't yet commited a disobedient act. it was when they were deceived for a brief moment through temptation that they fully "knew" and had their "eyes opened" to what disobedience is like. They knew they were disobeying him, but they did it anyway, because they desired the fruit.

They were able to grasp the concept of disobedience. if they couldn't, it doesnt make much sense that God would've specifically told them not to eat of the tree if it would have just been useless jibberish to them. again, they were not ignorant. Adam walked and talked with God everyday, they were rightly related to each other. i really wish that you and the few others that keep re-hashing this same old, incorrect argument would please stop. The bible doesnt teach they were ignorant, christian's do not believe or teach that Adam and Eve were ignorant. Your putting your own spin into the story to try to make God look bad, and make christian's doubt their faith. But it will not work.

Quote:

Let me get this straight... your will is completely conformed to the will of God - meaning you make NO decisions for yourself - and you think this is liberty? If you choose to make the same decisions as God, then that may be liberty - as long as you still have the choice NOT to agree with God.

yes, it is liberty. because i am the one who chose to be conformed to his image. it was my free choice for him to take over my life and direct my destiny. I dont think in heaven i'll have the choice to NOT agree with God, because I have already made the choice to be in agreement with God.

I have liberty in Christ because I am his slave. Sounds dumb, doesn't it? But it is one of the key teachings of the new testament. And it might not make much sense unless he enslaves you.
-adam
p.s. I really love your profile image. I'm just as much against the rapture as you are! I think it is completely un-Biblical. I have a song called "I wanna be Left Behind" that pokes fun at Tim Lahaye and that whole doctrine. You can check it out at myspace.com/theslavecollars.


Hambydammit
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Hey, man. Could you answer

Hey, man.

Could you answer my yes or no question?

Maybe you didn't see that I posted. When you posted that you didn't understand question number one out of the four I reposted, I rewrote it in a clear manner. Would you mind checking it out and giving a yes or no answer?

Thanks!

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

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Books about atheism


AZSuperman01
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adamgrant wrote:God is not

adamgrant wrote:
God is not what he creates. If he created all things, God cannot be all things. Or else, he would merely be a part of creation, and not a creator at all. When I write a song, do I become the song? No. But I wrote the song by my pleasure and for a purpose. As the artist, I have the full authority to do whatever I choose with that song. So it is with God. IF he is the creator of all things, then he would - logically speaking - have the right and would be just in doing whatever he pleases. If God really did create evil, then surely he had a reason, and it doesn't necessarily mean that he himself is evil.

Someone somewhere once said... "A good tree can not produce evil fruit" or something along those lines... Oh Darn... if only I could remember who that was.

Oh yeah... That was JESUS, your God. (Matt 7:18)

If God created evil, then he can't be good. By his own admission.
adamgrant wrote:
I suppose we would have to do an in-depth study on the original words in their original languages to decide the proper translation.

The word translated as "evil" in the Isaiah verse is the same word translated as "evil" in Genesis 8:21 "... for the imagination of man's heart is evil from his youth..."

It is translated as "wicked" in Genesis 13:13 "But the men of Sodom were wicked and sinners..."

It is also translated as evil in Deut 30:15 "See, I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil;"

The meaning of the word is very clear.

adamgrant wrote:
we were created in the IMAGE of God - *note* "IMAGE".. Not exact copies. We possess only certain attributes of his. Which do include love, hate, anger, mercy, etc. etc. He didn't create us with evil in our hearts. We chose to be evil.

I never said God created us as an EXACT carbon-copy of himself. I just said we were created in his image - complete with his faults, anger, jealousy, bitterness, etc.

adamgrant wrote:
And we are not expected to rise to a higher standard than him!

Sure we are, if we fall short at all, then we're doomed to Hell. Meanwhile he's free to lie, murder, etc. without recourse.

adamgrant wrote:
Adam and Eve weren't ignorant.... They knew the difference between right (obeying God) and wrong (disobeying God) even though they hadn't yet commited a disobedient act.

I didn't say they didn't understand right from wrong because they hadn't done anything wrong. I said they didn't know right from wrong because THEY DIDN'T. They LEARNED the difference between right and wrong, good and evil, AFTER they ate from the Tree of the knowlege of good and evil.

If they already understood the difference between right and wrong, then the tree wasn't the tree of knowledge - it was just a tree.

adamgrant wrote:
... it doesnt make much sense that God would've specifically told them not to eat of the tree if it would have just been useless jibberish to them.

My point exactly.

adamgrant wrote:
... christian's do not believe or teach that Adam and Eve were ignorant. Your putting your own spin into the story to try to make God look bad, and make christian's doubt their faith. But it will not work.

It's not my spin. It's the story according to the Bible. The tree of knowledge taught Adam and Eve the difference between right and wrong - prior to having this knowledge any command would've been jibberish to them.

Thus, Adam and Eve were punished for committing a sin when they didn't have the cognative ability to understand the difference between sin and obedience.

adamgrant wrote:
I dont think in heaven i'll have the choice to NOT agree with God, because I have already made the choice to be in agreement with God.

In otherwords, you'll be a mindless robot... exactly what God was supposedly trying to avoid in the first place.

No choice = no liberty.

"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?"
-- Douglas Adams, from Last Chance To See


Faithless1981
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In response

"Evil and suffering are, if you like, the price worth paying for liberty.""You are wrong to conclude that we wouldn't have liberty in heaven......Therefore, there is still liberty, but there is no sin." So do we have evil and suffering in heaven, or do we not have liberty in heaven? Your words man.


ShaunPhilly
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adamgrant wrote: But after

adamgrant wrote:

But after studying for awhile I learned that evil cannot be created (maybe it can in terms of action) but evil is not a substance or a disease floating in the air. Evil is the absence, or perversion, of good.

You're half way there. Now, if you realize that good is also not a substance, you'll be on your way to understanding that god and evil are judgments of actions, not a lack or fullness of something.

God and evil are words we use to describe the nature of actions and how they relate to the people, objects, etc they affect. This whole neoplatonic notion of God/Good and the lack of it (Satan/Evil) is based in very old and no-longer respectable philosophical ideologies. Thats the problem with theology; it's still stuck in pre-modern philosophy. Philosophy has moved on, so perhaps, should theology.

Those theologians that have moved on have either recognized the religious stories as myth, art, or have become atheists.

Shaun

I'll fight for a person's right to speak so long as that person will, in return, fight to allow me to challenge their opinions and ridicule them as the content of their ideas merit.