Would You Go On The Cross?

todangst's picture

Christians tell us that "jesus' died for us, and that he was a sacrifice.

I have two simple questions for our christian friends:

The first: What did this 'jesus' sacrifice? Is this jesus dead? Don't you hold that this jesus is now in eternal bliss, in heaven, where he receives the undying love and gratitude from a multitude?

Sacrifice means loss. Sacrificing doesn't involve gain. It certainly doesn't involve no loss and infinite gain. Yet this 'jesus' loses nothing, and gains everything.

Some theists respond by saying that he lost his physical body. But what does paul say about the nature of flesh?

"For I know that in me that is in my flesh dwelleth no good thing...." (Rom 7:18) which contradicts: "I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me...." (Gal. 2:20).

"Now this I say, brethren, that flesh and blood cannot inherit the kingdom of God; neither doth corruption inherit incorruption" (1 Cor. 15:50)

So where's the sacrifice?

There is none. "Jesus" sheds something worthless.

Some theists then announce "But he suffered pain!"

But everyday people suffer far worse pain. A child with Leukemia suffers eggregious amounts of pain, without any purpose, without any guarentee of an eternal reward in a blissful afterlife. They die without the hope of 'giving' their lives (and then getting it right back!) to save countless billions of others, without the pleasure of knowing that they are a 'hero' and without the eternal love and accolades that such an act would bring.

So don't insult yourself and logic itself by holding that this 'pain' is a sacrifice.

Some theists then insist that jesus, as an 'infinite being' suffered infinite pain.

But this is nonsense. Leaving aside the problems with an 'infinite being' for the sake of argument, for an infinite being to suffer 'infinite' pain, the being would need to suffer infinite harm. Infinite loss. But again, there is no loss, and the pain is finite.

So none of these responses work, or even make sense.

For those who still don't get it:

Remember that It makes no sense to state that something is a sacrifice when

1) there was no loss, and

2) the gain for the behavior was infinite.

Here's the ultimate irony: every person in the world suffers more than Jesus!

Jesus could not suffer even as much as a normal person:

Here is why:

1) He knows he's not really going to die in the first place
Mark 8:34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: "If
anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross and
follow me.
2) He knows that he will be loved and adored for his act
3) He knows he will save billions of souls with his act.
4) He knows his reward is infinitity in bliss.
5) He knows he will not lose anything, ergo, no sacrifice.

This is not a 'sacrifice' therefore, at all. In fact, its the biggest, best deal in the world, and I challenge a theist to respond as to whether they would go on the cross. I've never seen a theist dare respond at all.

So why do theists call this a 'sacrifice'? Because they don't bother to think it through. It takes compartmentalization. You have to forget that millions die every day in doubt, for no reason. That's the real pain in the world. A child dies of starvation, with no reason, no reward, nothing. A cancer patient watches his body whither away, in pain. He's not getting any reward, any recognition, no assurance that he will go to some heaven. He just faces death without any comfort.

How many people in the world have sacrificed real blood for others? A mother or a father dies to save their own child - no reward, no assurances. They just do it.

Every day, every person suffers more pain than this supposed savior could ever have suffered "for us". We all live in doubt, we all suffer pains. We do it because we must. Some of us even give more - we sacrifice our time, our blood, even our lives, for others.

No rewards. No guarentees.

A solidier gives up his life for his country. What reward does he get? A ribbon nailed to a wall somewhere, his name recorded in an unseen history book.

Now for my second question: If you were offered the opportunity to go on the cross, to save billions and also go to heaven in eternal bliss, would you go?

Before you answer:

Don't rush to find a way to sweep the cognitive dissonance away. Instead, think the question through,about it like this: imagine your child is about to be burned alive forever. And someone says to you: you can save him if you agree to go on the cross for three hours. In return, you not only save your own child, you save all children in the world. In addition, you are remembered and loved by billions. Oh, and one more thing: you go directly to heaven, in eternal bliss (after a three day tour of hell, all expenses paid!)

Would you refuse? Would ANYONE refuse? Seriously. There can be no greater gift in the world than to be offered the opportunity.

Again, I challenge a theist to answer the question: Would you go on the cross?

If you are a theist, about to respond to this by arguing that you couldn't go on the cross, please look up the word 'hypothetical' in a dictionary.

Parts taken from this thread: http://www.rationalresponders.com/forum/rook_hawkins/biblical_errancy/59

Archeopteryx's picture

Edison Trent

Edison Trent wrote:

Archeopteryx wrote:

Unexplainable god incapable of being understood by feeble man did it in an unexplainable way incapable of being understood by feeble man for unexplainable reasons that cannot be understood by feeble man. By I still know that it was definitely god and he definitely did it!

Do you know or don't you? The quoted text is a faith statement. (And I, unlike theists, don't consider faith a virtue).

No, I really don't know. I know you're going to pound this point into me, but I don't know why God did it that way. I'm a mere mortal, I can't explain it.

It's not that you can't explain it "because you're mortal". You can't explain it because it doesn't make any rational sense. You may as well be persisting in a belief in Santa. Christians hate it when atheists invoke the Santa comparison, but is it really that different? No evidence for any of your claims and don't know how any of it is supposed to work, you're just confident that somehow it does. Hm.

No matter what you choose to call it, your belief is pure and simply a belief without---or in spite of!---logic. 

Like many other Christians, you're being agnostic without realizing it.

 

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Archeopteryx wrote:

Oh, okay, so Jesus doesn't have our sins after all, so we can continue to be sinners, so his "sacrifice" didn't really forgive all sins.

Here's some help: According to my Christian upbringing, he didn't die to forgive all sins, he died so that sins could become forgivable.

But like I said, there is no reason why a perfect being would require such a thing other than mere capricious whim.

His death paid the price for all our sins, past, present, and future. However, he wants you to accept his free gift of salvation. He's not giving you a free ride to heaven because then we could just live our lives any way we wanted, we could even then all run around on the streets killing one another all day (and even disbelieve him!) and still go to heaven. He doesn't want that, he wants you to believe in him and to glorify him with your life.

You're missing the point though. He didn't NEED a sacrifice to offer the "free gift of salvation" if he (God) is a perfect being. If he is perfect, then he requires nothing, including the help of any intermediary persons or devices---including sacrifices.

The fact that you adhere to the position that the sacrifice was necessary for God to be able to extend to us this "free gift of salvation" is to necessarily commit yourself to the position that god is not a perfect being. There was something he could not accomplish without the help of something external to himself.

That is my main objection to what you've said in the above, but I offer you a second.

Why CAN'T God just let everyone go to Heaven anyway? Seriously. Is there any reason why he can't?

"Yes," any traditional Christian will say, "because people who do those things are sinners and don't deserve heaven."

Well, if you read my last post about Hell, we already know that they don't deserve Hell either. But why are they sinners? Why are the things they do wrong? Because God said so? Then morality is arbitrary. Because they are just wrong to begin with and God knows it? Then the rules are superior to---and therefore govern---even God!

It's a hopeless case. You can't revive a dead horse that has been repeatedly and thoroughly kicked. 

 

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Archeopteryx wrote:

But sacrifices in the old testament were made with the hope of achieving earthly rewards (good crops, many sons, protection from danger, etc) while the new testament shifts the focus to transcendent rewards.

So in that sense the two sacrifices are not the same.

And again, Jesus didn't really die, so it wasn't a sacrifice.

"Oh, but his physical body died."

Yeah, but that was like a burden to him anyway, wasn't it? Why would he care? That surely helped him more than it hurt him, if we accept the Christian belief about the differences between God and man.

The sacrifices in the OT were made for forgiveness of sins, not good luck. Again, Jesus the human died, he's no longer around. And again, he didn't sacrifice anything, he was the sacrifice.

I didn't say they were for good luck. I said they were for REWARDS.

The rewards God gave in the old testament were earthly rewards that benefitted man in his life on earth. The rewards God (Jesus) offers in the new testament are transcendent rewards that benefit man only after he dies.

Even if the OT sacrifices were for forgiveness of sin, the sought rewards for being without sin are the point.

 

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Archeopteryx wrote:

Unless, of course, you die before praying for forgiveness. Then you still have to. So I guess Jesus only kind sorta half saved humanity from their sins. Oh well. Good try, Jesus.

He still died for the sins of all. See my point above about why you need to accept his free gift of salvation to get to heaven.

I can accept that he did me a favor or tried to do me a favor (which was more or less like feeding me his table scraps), but that is not the point that Christians want to drive home. They want to drive home that BECAUSE he did me this favor (because he fed me some of his table scraps), I owe it to him to obey everything he says.

What he did wasn't "for me" if his intention in doing it was to earn my unquestioning obedience. If he did it to earn something for him, then it wasn't an altruistic sacrifice. It was manipulation.

I'll pass. 

 

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Nothing was "given up".

then there was not a sacrifice. End. 

Jesus the human offered himself as a sacrifice to God for the sins of humanity. Again, he didn't sacrifice something for our sins, he was the perfect flesh sacrifice offered to God.

He didn't sacrifice anything... but he was the perfect flesh... uh... sacrifice? What now?

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No one "lost" anything here, Jesus the human had to die to be an offering for our sins. Remember, the death of a perfect human was required, not the death of a deity.

First, Jesus didn't die. His "vessel" died, but that's ostensibly no different than my getting my tonsils taken out. I don't need them, and they were actually kind of a pain in my ass anyway. That's not exactly the same as dying. What if I told somebody, "I got my tonsils taken out FOR YOU"? Even if it was kind of true (for example, if I did it for my girlfriend so that our frequent make-outs wouldn't give her tonsilitis), it benefited me most, no matter how persistently I try to say otherwise.

Second, Jesus wasn't a human. He wasn't a God either. He was a demi-human. He was basically the same thing as Hercules, albeit with a little less testosterone and a little more estrogen.

He wasn't the perfect human sacrifice because he wasn't a perfect human. If I was looking to sacrifice the perfect Horse or the perfect Donkey, I wouldn't sacrifice a mule, no matter how great the mule might be. I wouldn't sacrifice the mule because it is not a horse and it is not a donkey, therefore it would not be the perfect sacrifice for either case. 

 

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Well that was long...I feel like I'm repeating myself over and over.

Yeah, kinda. Lots of Christian defenders do. Doesn't really help them though. 

 

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I think we've discussed this through and through, but if anyone has anything to add or criticize me for feel free.

Always. =) 

A place common to all will be maintained by none. A religion common to all is perhaps not much different.

Edison Trent's picture

aiia wrote: Everything

aiia wrote:

Everything dies. Where is the sacrifice?

Sure everything dies, but this wasn't just a natural death.  He was killed by death on the cross.  And it wasn't the natural time to die either.  By being killed in the flesh he was sacrificed.

jcgadfly wrote:

Why make it necessary for something/someone to die at all? Is God just a freak for seeing blood gush out?

Doesn't make him that much better than the god Molech that the Bible considered so abhorrent.

then again, altruistic sacrifice is a great plot device to make a character into a hero.

Like I said, I don't know why.  God played by his own rules.  My mere mortal mind isn't capable of understanding it.

Gauche wrote:

i see no reason to criticize you when from what i can see you are basically agreeing with the essay. you admit that jesus gave up nothing. the deal that he is given in the story is save humanity and lose absolutely nothing. so you would have to admit that you would take that deal. the whole point of the essay was that jesus sacrificed nothing and did nothing extraordinary.

I'm agreeing with the post because the post misses the entire point.  Jesus didn't sacrifice something, he was the sacrifice!  He wasn't meant to sacrifice something.  He was meant to be the sacrifice, a perfect human being.

aiia wrote:

Indeed!! If this god Edison is talking about could do anything, why would it make a universe where things died?

Is this god entertaining itself by torturing its creations like an evil demented immature child setting dogs and cats on fire?

It made a universe where physical things die but metaphysical things don't.  Don't ask me why, that's just the way he did it.  Perhaps God got bored and wanted to create people to glorify him, but he wanted them to choose to glorify him, not mindlessly follow him.

zarathustra's picture

Edison Trent wrote:

Edison Trent wrote:

aiia wrote:

Everything dies. Where is the sacrifice?

Sure everything dies, but this wasn't just a natural death. He was killed by death on the cross. And it wasn't the natural time to die either. By being killed in the flesh he was sacrificed.

Lots of people die unnaturally. Lots of people have died by crucifixion. Lots of people die at unnatural times (not to mention: life expectancy was much shorter in the 1st century; 33 wasn't so unnatural a time to go). Lots of people are "killed in the flesh". How are their deaths any less sacrficial than jesus'?

Edison Trent wrote:

aiia wrote:

Indeed!! If this god Edison is talking about could do anything, why would it make a universe where things died?

Is this god entertaining itself by torturing its creations like an evil demented immature child setting dogs and cats on fire?

It made a universe where physical things die but metaphysical things don't. Don't ask me why, that's just the way he did it. Perhaps God got bored and wanted to create people to glorify him, but he wanted them to choose to glorify him, not mindlessly follow him.

Thank you. Conceding that this god is a sadistic megalomaniac.

 

Case closed.

There are no theists on operating tables.

πππ†
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Gauche's picture

i thought the whole point

i thought the whole point of the essay was that jesus shouldn't necessarily be praised for doing something that any person would have done. i mean i'm not a "perfect human being" i'm not even a very nice one and i would have done what he did.

at this point it just seems like you're ranting a little bit. you're going on about gods wanting human sacrifices and creating perfect humans just to kill them and how awful humanity is. you don't actually believe this stuff do you?

There are twists of time and space, of vision and reality, which only a dreamer can divine
H.P. Lovecraft

Archeopteryx wrote: Oh, so

Archeopteryx wrote:

Oh, so god wasn't infinitely glorious to start with? If he's capable of such "improvement", then how could he have been perfect from the start? Oops!

And if he was perfect from the start, there would have been no reason for him to improve and there would be nothing for him to need, so there would be no good reason for him to create anything. Oops!

God, in the Trinity, expresses many perfect attributes (love, knowledge, power, etc.). But that does not express justice (wrath against sins) or mercy. These things are not possible inside of God. They require others to be the object of wrath or mercy.

Archeopteryx wrote:
First, what purpose does the punishment of hell serve?

Hell is payment for the price of sin. The price of offending the infinite God is infinite.

Archeopteryx wrote:
Supposedly, all sins are equal in the sight of God. Let's look at a popular "sin", such as premarital sex. Some guy--we'll call him "George"---has premarital sex one time. Then he dies of a heart attack while not believing in the Christian God. He is damned to eternity in Hell. Is this fair?

I doubt that was his only sin. Did he ever use God's name lightly (blasphemy)? Disrespect his parents? Tell a lie? Lust after women? Desire things more than God? But, sure it just takes one. How many lies do you have to tell to be a liar? How many murders make you a murderer?

Archeopteryx wrote:
Suppose the punishment for sin was that the righteous are allowed into heaven while the sinners simply die and cease to exist. That seems fair, doesn't it?

That is not fair at all. That would make God unjust. To allow criminals to escape punishment is unjust.

Archeopteryx wrote:
Nope, neither one of these were viable options for God. Nothing is good enough for his sinners except for ETERNAL TORTURE! MWAHAHAHA! (okay, I added the laugh. But isn't it appropriate by now?)

I'm not sure how much active torture is going on. Sometimes I think Hell would be an improvement over life on earth for many people. Some say the "wailing and gnashing of teeth" are people continuing to curse God. Not due to any particular torture. People just don't like God and continue to complain about Him.

Archeopteryx wrote:
Surely the guy will rehabilitate after so many thousands of years, right? I mean holy crap, man!

I can't prove it from the Bible, but it appears we become unchanging (like God) after death. That is why reform is impossible.

Archeopteryx wrote:
Now consider that a person can go to Hell for NO CRIME other than failing to believe in God. Suppose you never hear about him? (some don't). Suppose you were raised by a Muslim family and didn't know any better? (I suppose God would say they were "tricked&quotEye-wink.

Technically, belief in God is insufficient. Demons believe in God. You must turn (repent) from sin and trust in Christ for salvation.

We aren't certain what the judgment is for any given person. The only certain way to salvation is through Christ. For others, there is uncertainty. If you care about others, then spread the message of Christ. That's what I do.

Archeopteryx wrote:
Eternal torment for sins committed with a span of... oh... 75 years tops. TOPS!

You cannot possibly say that Hell is a just and deserved punishment with a straight face. There is absolutely no way to see it that way.

It is a hard doctrine, I have to admit that. But our sins are crime against an infinite being. If you lied before Congress, the punishment is worse than if you lie to a child or to your wife or boss. How much more so when you commit crimes against one who deserves only good.

A finite Hell and annihilation would disrespect God. It would imply He is not of infinite worth.

Archeopteryx wrote:
Why would he need to do that? If he was perfect, he would require no help of any kind. By suggesting that he was incapable of forgiving sin without this "sacrifice" is to concede that he did not have the power to do so. He therefore ceases to be all-powerful and, hence, he is not perfect.

As I mentioned above, there must be sinners to express justice and mercy. God is without sin, so He made us. The sacrifice of Jesus demonstrates that salvation is from God alone. There is nothing we can do. It also shows God's displeasure with sin. It removes any doubt that there is judgment for sin. It also expresses Jesus' love, that He would die for evil people (people are hesistant to die for good people they know, much less evil strangers).

Archeopteryx wrote:
Unless, of course, he just did it because he likes blood. (Given the observations of Hell we've made above, it seems quite likely). But considering that Jesus is apparently one third of the Godhead, isn't that kind of like masochism as well? Doesn't Christianity frown on that? (Okay, so the masochism was a cheap shot, but a fair observation, I think).

God enjoys punishing sin only to the extent that He cannot tolerate sin in any way. There are many Bible passages that show God weeping for what the world has become.

Magus's picture

 How can a god be incapable

 How can a god be incapable of tolerating sin? Or why can't god tolerate sin?  Sounds pretty limited to me.

Sounds made up...
Agnostic Atheist
No, I am not angry at your imaginary friends or enemies.

Archeopteryx's picture

nedbrek wrote: God, in the

nedbrek wrote:

God, in the Trinity, expresses many perfect attributes (love, knowledge, power, etc.). But that does not express justice (wrath against sins) or mercy. These things are not possible inside of God. They require others to be the object of wrath or mercy.

That doesn't make any sense at all.

It would be easy for me to have perfect love, perfect knowledge, perfect power, etc if I was the only thing in existence! I would only have to love myself, have power over myself, and have knowledge of myself. There! I know everything! Who would have thought greatness could be so easy?

But then I invent earth and mankind (though how I had perfect knowledge complete with these things before they ever existed is a terrible mystery that I suppose we'll just have to take "on faith&quotEye-wink.

Even though I had infinite knowledge, power, and love while creating these things, I somehow managed to create them in a way that made them vulnerable to behaving in ways that I hated. We could perhaps draw an analogy with a carpenter building a house, which is a decent house that mostly pleases him, but sometimes a door falls of its hinge or something, which kinda pisses him off. Is he really that great a carpenter? Did he really have perfect carpentry skills? Jumping back to god, how would that be possible with his infinite knowledge?

We could perhaps assume that since these things didn't exist yet---and therefore god had no knowledge of them---that god was forced to just kind wing it and throw a bunch of stuff together. Now that he does have knowledge of this blob of whatever that he just magically created from nothingness, he has to love the parts that he just happened to make something nice out of and "fix" the parts that he screwed up because he wasn't really sure what he was doing.

Of course, having infinite knowledge, he probably would have seen that coming. Weird that he would just go ahead and do it anyway. God must run on autopilot or something. 

I mean, really, how does it make sense?

And to suggest that god was perfect in this way, but not perfect in this way is ridiculous, because that means that something else was external to god. God didn't have it all. He was therefore not perfect because it was not in his power to accomplish those tasks which required the capabilities or characteristics he lacked!

My my... this is one sticky wicket, eh? 

 

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Hell is payment for the price of sin. The price of offending the infinite God is infinite.

Yes, we know that sin "offends god", but that's not exactly fair when god is making up all the rules---namely rules that are obvious difficult for the creatures he created that are obviously vulnerable to them. Not entirely our fault there. So much for that infinite knowledge wisdom god is supposed to have.

The question is not who the crime offends, the question is simply does the punishment fit the crime. By your logic, our courts of law should appoint judges that convict criminals---no matter what their crime (stealing, rape, jaywalking, whatever)---not to terms that fit the crime, but always to terms that mirror the judges age. That's a pretty good rule of thumb for a judge, eh? That's totally fair! Makes absolutely sense.

No, not really.

Does the punishment fit the crime? That is the question. 

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I doubt that was his only sin. Did he ever use God's name lightly (blasphemy)? Disrespect his parents? Tell a lie? Lust after women? Desire things more than God? But, sure it just takes one. How many lies do you have to tell to be a liar? How many murders make you a murderer?

It doesn't matter how many other sins he comitted because infinity is mathematically indivisible. If you cut infinity in half, you have two infinities. If you caught infinity into thirds, you have three infinities. So no matter how many crimes you observe, no matter what their size or degree, it will always be fair to apply an unjust infinity to any one crime.

And it will always be the case that an infinitely long length of time will be applied to a crime made in but a fraction of a 75 year life span. Again, what's up with that? 

In other words, the sentence will never fit the crime, and it will always be unjust. 

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That is not fair at all. That would make God unjust. To allow criminals to escape punishment is unjust.

They didn't escape punishment. They died. I wouldn't even have a problem if god said that all sinners will necessarily die painful deaths and then cease to exist while all the righteous will die peacefully in their sleep and then go to heaven and live in palaces (weird how the heavenly promises always seem to involve things people value on earth, even though we apparently "won't care". Hm. Riiiiight. Allow me to be the first to raise the flag of suspicion).

Feel free to come up with any other punishment ideas you can think of; my point is that traditional Hell is a horrifically unjust and vindictive. The punishment does not fit the crime.

And arguably, any punishment will be questionable since god is applying punishments to rules he basically made up himself. "You wil live and you will burn because you did things I like and you did things I didn't like" is basically what it boils down to.

If righteousness is being like god, then surely all high school bullies go to heaven. 

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I'm not sure how much active torture is going on. Sometimes I think Hell would be an improvement over life on earth for many people. Some say the "wailing and gnashing of teeth" are people continuing to curse God. Not due to any particular torture. People just don't like God and continue to complain about Him.

Dante surely would have agreed with you about the becoming "fixed" and hating God forever and being incapable of repenting and whatnot.

But this is all unorthodox guesswork. Is that what God really said, or is that what you think god said? That's just the version you like the best? You're papering over a huge crack with "interpretation".

But assuming that we do become incapable of repentence, I must ask why? God created us, god created the rules, god created hell, god has infinite power, what is the point of this? He could allow all of these sinners to learn from their mistakes and become righteous, but he simply allows this to happen? What happened to that infinite love?

Hm. 

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I can't prove it from the Bible, but it appears we become unchanging (like God) after death. That is why reform is impossible.

There's that interpretation again! Can't prove it from the Bible, eh? So you're just making what you think is a pretty good guess? How dare you claim to understand god or his plan using your own, feeble, human reason! Blasphemy! 

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Technically, belief in God is insufficient. Demons believe in God. You must turn (repent) from sin and trust in Christ for salvation.

Ooh, yes. Devils and demons believe in god but are sinners because they break god rules. Not the point. Good try though.

Suppose a person did follow all of God's rules, but simply didn't believe in him. Such people do exist (despite fundies who would insist that no unbeliever can really be moral).

It is possible to be damned for just not believing.

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We aren't certain what the judgment is for any given person. The only certain way to salvation is through Christ.

We aren't certain, but we should agree that the traditional, torturous hell is completely unjust.

The only way to salvation is through Christ? There's that all powerful god not being powerful enough to accomplish things without help again.

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For others, there is uncertainty. If you care about others, then spread the message of Christ. That's what I do.

I care about others, so I try and talk them out of centuries old folk tales. 

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It is a hard doctrine, I have to admit that. But our sins are crime against an infinite being.

Irrelevant, as mentioned before. 

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If you lied before Congress, the punishment is worse than if you lie to a child or to your wife or boss.

Only because Congress says so.

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How much more so when you commit crimes against one who deserves only good.

It doesn't matter who you commit a "crime" against, the question is whether the sentence is equal to the "crime".

Your comparison to congress unintentionally works in my favor. It is only worse to god because god says so (just like things are apparently only crimes because god says so).

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A finite Hell and annihilation would disrespect God. It would imply He is not of infinite worth.

A finite hell or annihilation would prove that god is merciful, which is something he is apparently supposed to be. 

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As I mentioned above, there must be sinners to express justice and mercy.

As I mentioned above, this doesn't make any sense.

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God is without sin, so He made us.

Oh, so he deliberately made us so that there would be sin? Thanks for admitting how much of a dick god can be.

Don't scoff. He could have created us without the capacity for sin, couldn't he? Or does he lack the power?

Thorny questions, and perhaps mockingly worded, but valid nonetheless.

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The sacrifice of Jesus demonstrates that salvation is from God alone.

No, it doesn't. It demonstrates that god was incapable of forgiving us without it. Yikes!

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There is nothing we can do. It also shows God's displeasure with sin.

Which he created. You even said it yourself. Can't blame us, but he does anyway, because he's god and he does whatever he wants.

Yep. He's still a jerk. 

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It removes any doubt that there is judgment for sin. It also expresses Jesus' love, that He would die for evil people (people are hesistant to die for good people they know, much less evil strangers).

As mentioned before, he didn't really die. He's still alive, isn't he? How does that powerful hymn go again....

He's alive!

He's alive!

He's alive and unforgiven,

and the gates are open wide!

He's alive!

Oh, man... I used to LOVE that one. Still a great song that I will gladly lend my appreciation, even though I have no belief in its contents.

Jesus didn't really do anything that great, and he didn't really do it "for me". I've already discussed this before. Last post, I believe. 

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God enjoys punishing sin only to the extent that He cannot tolerate sin in any way.

Then how did he create it? By accident? Oops... what an incompetent creator. =\

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There are many Bible passages that show God weeping for what the world has become.

How does god weep? Does he have eyes? Tear ducts? A sniffly nose, perhaps? Does sin make god wrathful or does sin make god sad?

Christians love god to be "just so" for whatever their current situation\mood calls for. It's amazing that he can be so many incompatible things at once. 

A place common to all will be maintained by none. A religion common to all is perhaps not much different.

Edison Trent's picture

Magus wrote:  How can a

Magus wrote:

 How can a god be incapable of tolerating sin? Or why can't god tolerate sin?  Sounds pretty limited to me.

A perfect God cannot tolerate imperfection.

Archeopteryx wrote:

Ooh, yes. Devils and demons believe in god but are sinners because they break god rules. Not the point. Good try though.

Suppose a person did follow all of God's rules, but simply didn't believe in him. Such people do exist (despite fundies who would insist that no unbeliever can really be moral).

It is possible to be damned for just not believing.

Show me a perfect person, one who has never done or thought anything wrong in their life.

Archeopteryx wrote:

Oh, so he deliberately made us so that there would be sin? Thanks for admitting how much of a dick god can be.

Don't scoff. He could have created us without the capacity for sin, couldn't he? Or does he lack the power?

Thorny questions, and perhaps mockingly worded, but valid nonetheless.

I'm going to go out on a limb here.  Evil is the absense of God.  I don't think that God is everywhere (yes, i know, Heresy! Heresey!  Hang him! Stone him!), especially in the pantheistic view of "god".  When man took his focus off God and put it onto himself, God was absent from his thoughts.  Man became selfish and corrupted, having eaten of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  God, being perfect, cannot accept imperfection, thus Adam and Eve were banished out of the garden.

Edison Trent wrote: Magus

Edison Trent wrote:

Magus wrote:

How can a god be incapable of tolerating sin? Or why can't god tolerate sin? Sounds pretty limited to me.

Edison Trent wrote:
A perfect God cannot tolerate imperfection.

But he has no problem creating it so it can be punished?

Archeopteryx wrote:

Ooh, yes. Devils and demons believe in god but are sinners because they break god rules. Not the point. Good try though.

Suppose a person did follow all of God's rules, but simply didn't believe in him. Such people do exist (despite fundies who would insist that no unbeliever can really be moral).

It is possible to be damned for just not believing.

Edison Trent wrote:
Show me a perfect person, one who has never done or thought anything wrong in their life.

Hasn't got a damn thing to do with his question.

Archeopteryx wrote:

Oh, so he deliberately made us so that there would be sin? Thanks for admitting how much of a dick god can be.

Don't scoff. He could have created us without the capacity for sin, couldn't he? Or does he lack the power?

Thorny questions, and perhaps mockingly worded, but valid nonetheless.

Edison Trent wrote:
I'm going to go out on a limb here. Evil is the absense of God. I don't think that God is everywhere (yes, i know, Heresy! Heresey! Hang him! Stone him!), especially in the pantheistic view of "god". When man took his focus off God and put it onto himself, God was absent from his thoughts. Man became selfish and corrupted, having eaten of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. God, being perfect, cannot accept imperfection, thus Adam and Eve were banished out of the garden.

Again, God can create imperfection and set up the rules so that said imperfect creation can fall on its face (can't disobey if you don't know what good/evil/obedience/disobedience means) but he can't tolerate imperfection so it must be punished?

But he loves us...

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

I think this is going very

I think this is going very well.  Thanks to all involved!

jcgadfly wrote:
Again, God can create imperfection and set up the rules so that said imperfect creation can fall on its face

The Bible says God created evil, only in the same way He created darkness.  He created light, and wherever there is no light, we have darkness.  Similarly, wherever there is no good, there is evil.

And that makes sense.  Evil is not a object thing.  Evil is the twisting of, or opposition to good.  For example work is good, working to the point of ignoring your family is bad.

jcgadfly wrote:
(can't disobey if you don't know what good/evil/obedience/disobedience means) but he can't tolerate imperfection so it must be punished?

What do you mean?

nedbrek wrote:

nedbrek wrote:

I think this is going very well. Thanks to all involved!

jcgadfly wrote:
Again, God can create imperfection and set up the rules so that said imperfect creation can fall on its face

The Bible says God created evil, only in the same way He created darkness. He created light, and wherever there is no light, we have darkness. Similarly, wherever there is no good, there is evil.

And that makes sense. Evil is not a object thing. Evil is the twisting of, or opposition to good. For example work is good, working to the point of ignoring your family is bad.

jcgadfly wrote:
(can't disobey if you don't know what good/evil/obedience/disobedience means) but he can't tolerate imperfection so it must be punished?

What do you mean?

1. So when the Bible makes reference to God sending lying and tormenting spirits to people to make sure he gets what he wants, he's not actually doing evil he's just removing good? Way to let God off the hook.

2. According to your bible, Adam and Eve didn't know what the concepts of good and evil were until after they ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. So God was setting them up to fail so he had a reason to punish them (and so he could sacrifice himself to himself to change that rule he made)

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

Edison Trent's picture

nedbrek wrote: The Bible

nedbrek wrote:

The Bible says God created evil, only in the same way He created darkness.  He created light, and wherever there is no light, we have darkness.  Similarly, wherever there is no good, there is evil.

And that makes sense.  Evil is not a object thing.  Evil is the twisting of, or opposition to good.  For example work is good, working to the point of ignoring your family is bad.

I can see what you're saying about evil being the absence of good, but where in the Bible does it say that God created evil?

Edison Trent

Edison Trent wrote:

nedbrek wrote:

The Bible says God created evil, only in the same way He created darkness. He created light, and wherever there is no light, we have darkness. Similarly, wherever there is no good, there is evil.

And that makes sense. Evil is not a object thing. Evil is the twisting of, or opposition to good. For example work is good, working to the point of ignoring your family is bad.

I can see what you're saying about evil being the absence of good, but where in the Bible does it say that God created evil?

Isaiah 45:7 (KJV). The NIV has it as "cause disaster", The NKJV and others have it as "create calmity" 

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

Edison Trent's picture

jcgadfly wrote: Edison

jcgadfly wrote:
Edison Trent wrote:

nedbrek wrote:

The Bible says God created evil, only in the same way He created darkness. He created light, and wherever there is no light, we have darkness. Similarly, wherever there is no good, there is evil.

And that makes sense. Evil is not a object thing. Evil is the twisting of, or opposition to good. For example work is good, working to the point of ignoring your family is bad.

I can see what you're saying about evil being the absence of good, but where in the Bible does it say that God created evil?

Isaiah 45:7 (KJV). The NIV has it as "cause disaster", The NKJV and others have it as "create calmity"

I've seen this verse used in that way, but I think that it means more of disaster, i.e. natural disasters like storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, volcanoes, etc.  I'm not sure it's saying here "God created evil, so there."

Archeopteryx's picture

On goes the vicious

On goes the vicious cycle... =)

 

Quote:

Magus wrote:

How can a god be incapable of tolerating sin? Or why can't god tolerate sin? Sounds pretty limited to me.

A perfect God cannot tolerate imperfection.

 

Then why does "imperfection" still exist?

No matter what answer you concoct in your attempts to make sense out of it, it will necessitate that god somehow---to some extent---tolerates imperfection.

Quote:

Archeopteryx wrote:

Ooh, yes. Devils and demons believe in god but are sinners because they break god rules. Not the point. Good try though.

Suppose a person did follow all of God's rules, but simply didn't believe in him. Such people do exist (despite fundies who would insist that no unbeliever can really be moral).

It is possible to be damned for just not believing.

Show me a perfect person, one who has never done or thought anything wrong in their life.

As said before, this misses the point. I'm not saying that there is any one person who is perfect (and, I might add, such a person would pass or fail the "perfect" test depending on whose definition you were using).

The point is that a person can be punished for nothing more than not believing. Do they commit other "sins" as well? Maybe. Who cares? That's not the point.

Quote:

I'm going to go out on a limb here. Evil is the absense of God. I don't think that God is everywhere (yes, i know, Heresy! Heresey! Hang him! Stone him!), especially in the pantheistic view of "god". When man took his focus off God and put it onto himself, God was absent from his thoughts. Man became selfish and corrupted, having eaten of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Fail.

If evil is the absence of god in the same sense that darkness is the absence of light, and if god doesn't exist everywhere, then evil must have always existed.

Since your contention is that god cannot tolerate evil, how can you also say that evil is as eternal as god? If he was going to rid the world of evil, he had an entire infinity before we arrived in which to do it.

Evil is as eternal as god? Evil is as powerful as god (or at least powerful enough to compete)? Evil is at least equally present, or *gasp!* more present than god? In the beginning, there wasn't just god, but there was evil, too? So you've acknowledged that god is not all present. Thanks! But you've now indirectly stated that he is not all powerful either. Thanks!

Since god is apparently not evil in any way whatsoever, then he is also not all knowing. Hm. (Perhaps capable of knowing, but how does that make him different from us?)

The major problem with your explanation, though, is that it defines good and evil in terms of degree or as a gradient. Much like temperature, there isn't just a hot and a cold, there is an entire continuum of temperatures. Like light and darkness (your analogy), there isn't just light and dark, there is an entire continuum of luminescence. Like color, there isn't just black and white, but there is also an entire continuum we call the gray scale.

The problem with positing such a continuum is that, no matter where along the continuum our observation lies, we can always point to something higher or lower in the continuum. No matter how hot something is, we can say "Well X is even hotter than that." No matter how light something is, we can always say, "Well X is even lighter than that." No matter how GOOD something is, we can always say, "Well X is even more good than that." Which means that no matter how good god is, we can always say, Well X is even better than god. No matter how evil satan is, we can say: well, X is even worse than satan. And since we can always imagine something with greater or lesser value along the continuum, there is no perfect value on the continuum, which means that no matter how good god might be, he is also evil compared to whatever is higher (even if what is higher is only potential and not actual).

On the other hand, if good and evil are mutually exclusive (in a heads or tails fashion), then god is either evil or he's not. He's either good or he's not.

Quote:

God, being perfect, cannot accept imperfection, thus Adam and Eve were banished out of the garden.

They were banished for becoming more like god, not because they became more imperfect. Logically, they were more imperfect beforehand and god banished them only after they became less imperfect.

Hm. Interesting.

Quote:

The Bible says God created evil, only in the same way He created darkness. He created light, and wherever there is no light, we have darkness. Similarly, wherever there is no good, there is evil.

First of all, what? God created himself then? How does that work? 

I've already answered this above, but I will restate that this means that evil always existed along with god and that god, to this day, has been unable to conquer evil, which means that evil is at least as powerful, if not more powerful, than god.

Or god just doesn't care, which makes him not perfectly good.

Quote:

And that makes sense. Evil is not a object thing. Evil is the twisting of, or opposition to good. For example work is good, working to the point of ignoring your family is bad.

Hm. But having premarital sex is bad, but not having premarital sex is supposedly good. Hm....

So clearly evil is not always a lack of action. It is also sometimes an action. Good is not always an action; it is sometimes a lack of action.

This sort of quantitative explanation doesn't seem to match up.

Quote:

jcgadfly wrote:
(can't disobey if you don't know what good/evil/obedience/disobedience means) but he can't tolerate imperfection so it must be punished?

What do you mean?

He means that there were no rules about what is right and what is wrong before God made them. So before he made them, there was no right and wrong. Under those conditions, we had no idea what right and wrong were. But when God created the rules concerning the rightness and wrongness of things, he somehow managed to make rules that he must have known would be nearly impossible for us to follow (namely the ones that demand us to resist the biological urges and drives he himself gave to us).

Essentially (but not exactly), it would be almost like me drawing a sentient circle and then telling it that I would set it on fire unless it became as little like a circle as possible.

If I wanted a square, I could have just drawn a square. Or maybe I could have decided that "rightness" was to be a circle instead of a square. Yet somehow I stacked the deck against my circle friend. And yet I love him?

I believe that was his point.

Quote:

2. According to your bible, Adam and Eve didn't know what the concepts of good and evil were until after they ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. So God was setting them up to fail so he had a reason to punish them (and so he could sacrifice himself to himself to change that rule he made)

Exactly. He created A&E vulnerable to the temptation of the tree, but he also created the tree, and he also PUT THE TREE THERE WITH THEM, and then he told them not to touch it. Why not place a box next to a six year old, tell him not to open it, and then go away and leave him unattended for a while (or pretend to, since god is apparently omniscient). Oh! Surprise! He opened it! Guess it was all his fault and we'd better take action right away! We had absolutely nothing to do with it! Nope! What a poor, sinful child!

Quote:

I've seen this verse used in that way, but I think that it means more of disaster, i.e. natural disasters like storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, volcanoes, etc. I'm not sure it's saying here "God created evil, so there."

Natural disasters create torment for mankind. Even if you want to argue that there is an unknown goodness to it as well, there is still an evilness to it, so god is still making evil when he does these things.

A place common to all will be maintained by none. A religion common to all is perhaps not much different.

aiia's picture

Edison Trent

Edison Trent wrote:
...where in the Bible does it say that God created evil?
Gen 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

Edison Trent

Edison Trent wrote:
jcgadfly wrote:
Edison Trent wrote:

nedbrek wrote:

The Bible says God created evil, only in the same way He created darkness. He created light, and wherever there is no light, we have darkness. Similarly, wherever there is no good, there is evil.

And that makes sense. Evil is not a object thing. Evil is the twisting of, or opposition to good. For example work is good, working to the point of ignoring your family is bad.

I can see what you're saying about evil being the absence of good, but where in the Bible does it say that God created evil?

Isaiah 45:7 (KJV). The NIV has it as "cause disaster", The NKJV and others have it as "create calmity"

I've seen this verse used in that way, but I think that it means more of disaster, i.e. natural disasters like storms, hurricanes, tornadoes, volcanoes, etc. I'm not sure it's saying here "God created evil, so there."

So when God said he created "evil" he didn't really mean "EVIL"?

What other parts of the words of your God did he not really mean to say? 

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

aiia wrote: Edison Trent

aiia wrote:
Edison Trent wrote:
...where in the Bible does it say that God created evil?
Gen 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

But Genesis 1:31, everything was very good.  It wasn't until Adam and Eve disobeyed God that there was evil.

jcgadfly wrote: 1. So when

jcgadfly wrote:

1. So when the Bible makes reference to God sending lying and tormenting spirits to people to make sure he gets what he wants, he's not actually doing evil he's just removing good? Way to let God off the hook.

Satan cannot act without God's permission (that is, Satan is not an equal with God - as in dualism). God withholds His protection, and Satan goes to work.

jcgadfly wrote:
2. According to your bible, Adam and Eve didn't know what the concepts of good and evil were until after they ate from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. So God was setting them up to fail so he had a reason to punish them (and so he could sacrifice himself to himself to change that rule he made)

They had no "da'ath" - knowledge or awareness of good and evil. That is, no experience. Good was being with God and obeying Him, evil was to disobey God. After eating the fruit they started to become aware of all sort of evil. And it continues today.

Magus's picture

Didn't god know they would

Didn't god know they would disobey him before he created them?  Sounds to me like god wanted sin and disobeidence.

Sounds made up...
Agnostic Atheist
No, I am not angry at your imaginary friends or enemies.

aiia's picture

nedbrek wrote:

nedbrek wrote:

aiia wrote:
Edison Trent wrote:
...where in the Bible does it say that God created evil?
Gen 1:1 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.

But Genesis 1:31, everything was very good. It wasn't until Adam and Eve disobeyed God that there was evil.

So then you are saying 'god' (whatever that is) didn't create the universe?

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

Archeopteryx wrote: Then

Archeopteryx wrote:

Then why does "imperfection" still exist?

No matter what answer you concoct in your attempts to make sense out of it, it will necessitate that god somehow---to some extent---tolerates imperfection.

We are removed/separated from God.  God does not tolerate imperfection - in His presence.  And God is longsuffering/patient.  He desires for all people to be saved.  Eventually, His patience runs out.

Archeopteryx wrote:
Hm. But having premarital sex is bad, but not having premarital sex is supposedly good. Hm....

The positive is "honoring marriage as the shadow of Christ and the Church".  Sex outside of marriage abuses this image.

Archeopteryx wrote:
He means that there were no rules about what is right and what is wrong before God made them. So before he made them, there was no right and wrong. Under those conditions, we had no idea what right and wrong were. But when God created the rules concerning the rightness and wrongness of things, he somehow managed to make rules that he must have known would be nearly impossible for us to follow (namely the ones that demand us to resist the biological urges and drives he himself gave to us).

God didn't "make rules" so much as things proceed from His nature.  Obeying and honoring God is good.  Disobeying is evil.  Adam and Eve could of obeyed for all eternity.  But chances are, they'd disobey eventually.  And here we are.

Archeopteryx wrote:

Exactly. He created A&E vulnerable to the temptation of the tree, but he also created the tree, and he also PUT THE TREE THERE WITH THEM, and then he told them not to touch it. Why not place a box next to a six year old, tell him not to open it, and then go away and leave him unattended for a while (or pretend to, since god is apparently omniscient). Oh! Surprise! He opened it! Guess it was all his fault and we'd better take action right away! We had absolutely nothing to do with it! Nope! What a poor, sinful child!

Sure, but A&E (I thought of the TV channel at first Smiling were not children.  They were fully developed adults.  They knew exactly what they were doing. 

Gauche's picture

nedbrek wrote:

nedbrek wrote:

They had no "da'ath" - knowledge or awareness of good and evil. That is, no experience. Good was being with God and obeying Him, evil was to disobey God. After eating the fruit they started to become aware of all sort of evil. And it continues today.

this doesn't make sense. "They had no "da'ath" - knowledge or awareness of good and evil. That is, no experience." << you start out ok with this. but then this happens>> "Good... << this word right here, they dont know what this word means, you said so yourself in the preceding sentence remember?

"...was being with God and obeying Him, evil...<< you see right here? they don't know what this means either. "...was to disobey God.

to know what those things even mean they need this right here>> "knowledge or awareness of good and evil" <<remember that, that thing you were talking about in your first sentence?

moral decisions require this>>"knowledge or awareness of good and evil"

this right here is a moral decision>> "Good was being with God and obeying Him, evil was to disobey God."

do you get it?

There are twists of time and space, of vision and reality, which only a dreamer can divine
H.P. Lovecraft

Gauche wrote: nedbrek

Gauche wrote:
nedbrek wrote:

They had no "da'ath" - knowledge or awareness of good and evil. That is, no experience. Good was being with God and obeying Him, evil was to disobey God. After eating the fruit they started to become aware of all sort of evil. And it continues today.

this doesn't make sense. "They had no "da'ath" - knowledge or awareness of good and evil. That is, no experience." << you start out ok with this. but then this happens>> "Good... << this word right here, they dont know what this word means, you said so yourself in the preceding sentence remember?

"...was being with God and obeying Him, evil...<< you see right here? they don't know what this means either. "...was to disobey God.

to know what those things even mean they need this right here>> "knowledge or awareness of good and evil" <<remember that, that thing you were talking about in your first sentence?

moral decisions require this>>"knowledge or awareness of good and evil"

this right here is a moral decision>> "Good was being with God and obeying Him, evil was to disobey God."

do you get it?

Nedbrek's statement here, "Sure, but A&E (I thought of the TV channel at first Smiling were not children.  They were fully developed adults.  They knew exactly what they were doing. " shows he doesn't. 

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

Edison Trent's picture

nedbrek wrote: But Genesis

nedbrek wrote:

But Genesis 1:31, everything was very good.  It wasn't until Adam and Eve disobeyed God that there was evil.

But wait...didn't Satan rebel against God (also taking a third of the angels) before he was able to tempt Eve?   Isn't that considered "sin" or evil?

Archeopteryx, you're saying that evil had to always exist in order for it to be the absence of God.  I say wrong.  If evil is simply the absence of good, then evil doesn't really exist.  And evil and good can have absolutes.  For example, let's take hot and cold.  There is an absolute "cold", which is 0 K, at which all motion ceases.  There is also probably an absolute "hot", at which you can get no hotter.  Like I said, evil doesn't really exist, it's the absence of God, though we define it as "evil".  This is one of if not the major contention on the validity of the Bible, so explaining it isn't an easy task.

Gauche wrote: this doesn't

Gauche wrote:

this doesn't make sense. "They had no "da'ath" - knowledge or awareness of good and evil. That is, no experience." << you start out ok with this. but then this happens>> "Good... << this word right here, they dont know what this word means, you said so yourself in the preceding sentence remember?

"...was being with God and obeying Him, evil...<< you see right here? they don't know what this means either. "...was to disobey God.

Right, they had no knowledge of what comes from good and evil.  They knew about obedience (work the garden, don't eat the fruit) or disobedience (eat the fruit).  Just like a child doesn't need to understand all the reasons we correct them.  They just need to obey.

Edison Trent wrote: But

Edison Trent wrote:

But wait...didn't Satan rebel against God (also taking a third of the angels) before he was able to tempt Eve? Isn't that considered "sin" or evil?

The timing of Satan's fall is difficult. The entire book of Job seems to be saying Satan has (some) access to Heaven.

The "third of the angels" passage is Revelation 12:4. The immediate context is the dragon preparing to devour the child who would rule all nations (Jesus).

Jesus mentions the fall of Satan in Luke 10:18. It appears to be related to His mission.

It seems Satan was not fully removed from Heaven until around the time of Jesus. Although the book of Enoch does talk about it some. The history of the book of Enoch is clouded, however (and it is non-canonical).

triften's picture

nedbrek wrote: (and it is

nedbrek wrote:

(and it is non-canonical).

According to whom? Are you saying that people pick and choose what books to consider the word of god, using their own judgement?

-Triften

triften wrote: According to

triften wrote:
According to whom? Are you saying that people pick and choose what books to consider the word of god, using their own judgement?

Enoch falls under the Hebrew Old Testament (HOT).  The HOT was taken as a whole from the Jewish authorities at the time of the foundation of the Church.  Those authorities rejected it.

The only full copies still remaining are relatively new and in Ethiopic.  Given the protection we've seen of other Scripture, it is safe to assume that is not inspired.

That does not mean it cannot have anything interesting or possibly instructive.  An interesting project would be to correlate the oldest fragments (which predate Jesus) to the more modern text (which often reads somewhat like Christian "fan-fiction" of the time).

Eloise's picture

I'm not surprised this has

I'm not surprised this has so many comments. This is the best of all yours I have read Todangst. And absolutely right, I absolutely agree with your conclusion. 

How many proclaimed christians would get it, I don't know, but honestly, it's not like it isn't in their book. 

"I tell you the truth, if you believe in me you will do the same things that I am doing. In fact, you will do even greater things..."

 Looks like all those begging for the chance to hang are the true believers. Irony huh?

Theist badge qualifier : Gnostic/Philosophical Panentheist

www.mathematicianspictures.com

aiia's picture

nedbrek

nedbrek wrote:
Archeopteryx wrote:


Then why does "imperfection" still exist?

No matter what answer you concoct in your attempts to make sense out of it, it will necessitate that god somehow---to some extent---tolerates imperfection.


We are removed/separated from God.
If your god is everywhere (and it has to be to know all) then "we" cannot be removed/separated. How stupid can you be?
Quote:
God does not tolerate imperfection - in His presence.
If this 'god' does not tolerate imperfection why did it create and/or allow imperfection? Is your 'god' insane? Or are you?
Quote:
And God is longsuffering/patient. He desires for all people to be saved. Eventually, His patience runs out.
If this insane 'god' wants to save people, all it needs to do is not send people to hell.

What idiot is telling you this shit or are you making this shit up?

Why would a 'god' have emotions? Emotions are endemical to biological entities.

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

aiia's picture

nedbrek wrote: Gauche

nedbrek wrote:
Gauche wrote:


this doesn't make sense. "They had no "da'ath" - knowledge or awareness of good and evil. That is, no experience." << you start out ok with this. but then this happens>> "Good... << this word right here, they dont know what this word means, you said so yourself in the preceding sentence remember?

"...was being with God and obeying Him, evil...<< you see right here? they don't know what this means either. "...was to disobey God.



Right, they had no knowledge of what comes from good and evil. They knew about obedience (work the garden, don't eat the fruit) or disobedience (eat the fruit). Just like a child doesn't need to understand all the reasons we correct them. They just need to obey.
If they knew about obedience why did eve eat from the tree? She ate from the tree because she DIDN'T know obedience. Didn't you even bother to look this word up in the dictionary? To obey is to understand that it is evil to disobey. I tire of your ignorance.

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

aiia's picture

Edison Trent

Edison Trent wrote:


nedbrek wrote:


But Genesis 1:31, everything was very good. It wasn't until Adam and Eve disobeyed God that there was evil.



But wait...didn't Satan rebel against God (also taking a third of the angels) before he was able to tempt Eve? Isn't that considered "sin" or evil?

Archeopteryx, you're saying that evil had to always exist in order for it to be the absence of God. I say wrong. If evil is simply the absence of good, then evil doesn't really exist. And evil and good can have absolutes. For example, let's take hot and cold. There is an absolute "cold", which is 0 K, at which all motion ceases. There is also probably an absolute "hot", at which you can get no hotter. Like I said, evil doesn't really exist, it's the absence of God, though we define it as "evil". This is one of if not the major contention on the validity of the Bible, so explaining it isn't an easy task.
You and nedbrek conveniently ignored my question above. Didn't this 'god' (according to your fantasy) create the universe? The UNIVERSE! That means EVERYTHING! Including evil. GET IT? Are are you and a million other theists so stupid you can't understand it?

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

aiia wrote:

aiia wrote:

If your god is everywhere (and it has to be to know all) then "we" cannot be removed/separated.

If this 'god' does not tolerate imperfection why did it create and/or allow imperfection? Is your 'god' insane? Or are you?

Good point. Thanks!

We are removed from most of God's goodness. His mercy, grace, and wrath are still present (Psalm 139:8 ). Mercy protects us from the punishment we deserve. Grace gives us good that we do not deserve. This is true even for unbelievers.

God allows for imperfection so these attributes (wrath, mercy, grace, and justice) can be expressed. God in Himself (the Trinity) cannot express these things.

aiia wrote:
If this insane 'god' wants to save people, all it needs to do is not send people to hell.

Hell is the result of breaking the law. It would not be just for a criminal to break the law and not pay the consequences.

aiia wrote:
What idiot is telling you this shit or are you making this shit up?

No one is telling me these things specifically. I am applying Biblical theology as it is understand by most orthodox Christians (small 'o' ). Listen the teaching of John MacArthur, John Piper, Charles Spurgeon, etc. They say the same things.

aiia wrote:
Why would a 'god' have emotions? Emotions are endemical to biological entities.

Why wouldn't He? The Bible says He is angry, jealous, sad, pleased, etc. That is in terms we can understand. I wouldn't assume it is exactly like it is for us. God has no body, so physical effects would certainly be absent (increased heart rate, sweating, etc.)

aiia's picture

nedbrek wrote: aiia

nedbrek wrote:
aiia wrote:


If your god is everywhere (and it has to be to know all) then "we" cannot be removed/separated.

If this 'god' does not tolerate imperfection why did it create and/or allow imperfection? Is your 'god' insane? Or are you?


Good point. Thanks!

We are removed from most of God's goodness. (preaching deleted)
I repeat, If your god is everywhere (and it has to be to know all) then "we" cannot be removed/separated.

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

aiia's picture

nedbrek wrote: aiia

nedbrek wrote:
aiia wrote:


If your god is everywhere (and it has to be to know all) then "we" cannot be removed/separated.

If this 'god' does not tolerate imperfection why did it create and/or allow imperfection? Is your 'god' insane? Or are you?


God allows for imperfection so these attributes (wrath, mercy, grace, and justice) can be expressed. God in Himself (the Trinity) cannot express these things.
If this 'god' cannot express these things, then it cannot create these things. But imperfection exists, therefore your imaginary 'god' does not exist.

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

aiia's picture

nedbrek wrote: aiia

nedbrek wrote:
aiia wrote:
If this insane 'god' wants to save people, all it needs to do is not send people to hell.


Hell is the result of breaking the law.
I repeat, If this insane 'god' wants to save people, all it needs to do is not send people to hell.

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

aiia's picture

nedbrek wrote:

nedbrek wrote:
aiia wrote:
What idiot is telling you this shit or are you making this shit up?


No one is telling me these things specifically. I am applying Biblical theology
I asked what idiot is telling you this. If you are adhering to Biblical theology then obviously you are observing what is written in a book called bible. That seems specific. If the 3 other clowns are getting their insane ideas from the same book, it remains specific to that book and if you believe what is writen in it, you are a fool.

Quote:
aiia wrote:
Why would a 'god' have emotions? Emotions are endemical to biological entities.


Why wouldn't He?
I just told you why not.


Quote:
The Bible says He is angry, jealous, sad, pleased, etc. That is in terms we can understand. I wouldn't assume it is exactly like it is for us. God has no body, so physical effects would certainly be absent (increased heart rate, sweating, etc.)
Whoever wrote the bible is wrong also. If, as you say, 'god' has no body then it does not exist.

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

aiia wrote: I repeat, If

aiia wrote:
I repeat, If your god is everywhere (and it has to be to know all) then "we" cannot be removed/separated.

Sure, we are in the presence of God's wrath, mercy, and justice.  In Hell, there is only the presence of His wrath.  In Heaven, there is only His goodness. 

aiia wrote: If this 'god'

aiia wrote:
If this 'god' cannot express these things, then it cannot create these things. But imperfection exists, therefore your imaginary 'god' does not exist.

He "created" imperfection, only with regard to creating beings who could oppose Him.  

aiia wrote: I repeat, If

aiia wrote:
I repeat, If this insane 'god' wants to save people, all it needs to do is not send people to hell.

Sure.  But God is also just.  And sin (crime, breaking the law) must be punished.

aiia wrote: I asked what

aiia wrote:
I asked what idiot is telling you this. If you are adhering to Biblical theology then obviously you are observing what is written in a book called bible. That seems specific.

Oh, sure, I am adhering to Biblical theology.  (I thought that was clear) 

aiia wrote:
Quote:
aiia wrote:
Why would a 'god' have emotions? Emotions are endemical to biological entities.


Why wouldn't He?
I just told you why not.

Apparently, spiritual entities can have them too.

aiia wrote:
Whoever wrote the bible is wrong also. If, as you say, 'god' has no body then it does not exist.

You are just asserting that there is no spiritual realm.  If there is a spiritual realm, then God exists.

 

aiia's picture

nedbrek wrote: aiia

nedbrek wrote:
aiia wrote:
Whoever wrote the bible is wrong also. If, as you say, 'god' has no body then it does not exist.

You are just asserting that there is no spiritual realm. If there is a spiritual realm, then God exists.

What is "spiritual realm"?

People who think there is something they refer to as god don't ask enough questions.

aiia wrote: nedbrek

aiia wrote:
nedbrek wrote:

You are just asserting that there is no spiritual realm. If there is a spiritual realm, then God exists.

What is "spiritual realm"?

Something other than the natural.  Whatever it is where spirits are. 

Archeopteryx's picture

nedbrek wrote:

nedbrek wrote:
aiia wrote:
nedbrek wrote:

You are just asserting that there is no spiritual realm. If there is a spiritual realm, then God exists.

What is "spiritual realm"?

Something other than the natural. Whatever it is where spirits are.

 

In saying this, you're not saying what god is or where he is, you are only saying where they are not.

 

It's basically like saying, "God does not live in my closet". Everywhere that is not in my closet, we will call "the spiritual realm". Therefore, god lives in the spiritual realm

But where is that? You don't know! Still agnostic and not realizing it. Welcome, once again, to atheism. 

 

Supernatural claims are meaningless, just like all other god claims.

A place common to all will be maintained by none. A religion common to all is perhaps not much different.

triften's picture

nedbrek wrote: Enoch falls

nedbrek wrote:

Enoch falls under the Hebrew Old Testament (HOT). The HOT was taken as a whole from the Jewish authorities at the time of the foundation of the Church. Those authorities rejected it.

Why did they reject it? They used their own judgement? How do we know they were correct?

nedbrek wrote:

The only full copies still remaining are relatively new and in Ethiopic. Given the protection we've seen of other Scripture, it is safe to assume that is not inspired.

Well, you said the authorities rejected it, so of course it would not have been protected by the church. Just because it wasn't as popular, it wasn't inspired? How do you know Satan wasn't trying to trick people into rejecting this inspired work?

nedbrek wrote:

That does not mean it cannot have anything interesting or possibly instructive. An interesting project would be to correlate the oldest fragments (which predate Jesus) to the more modern text (which often reads somewhat like Christian "fan-fiction" of the time).

But you wouldn't consider it as word-of-god-y as the rest of the bible?

-Triften

Edison Trent's picture

Quote: You and nedbrek

Quote:

You and nedbrek conveniently ignored my question above. Didn't this 'god' (according to your fantasy) create the universe? The UNIVERSE! That means EVERYTHING! Including evil. GET IT? Are are you and a million other theists so stupid you can't understand it?

aiia, you are the one who doesn't get it.  Darkness doesn't really exist.  It is the absence of light.  Cold doesn't really exist.  It is the absence of heat.  Evil doesn't really exist.  It is the absence of God.  And there are absolutes for all of these.  There is absolute cold, i.e. 0 Kelvins, at which no motion is present.  There is absolute darkness, i.e. no light is present.  There is absolute evil too, i.e. when God isn't present.  I'll give some examples.  When Satan took this thoughts off of God and put them on himself, he was sinning.  When Adam and Eve took their thoughts off of God and put them on themselves, they sinned by eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  What more of an explanation do you want?

triften's picture

Edison Trent wrote: There

Edison Trent wrote:

There is absolute evil too, i.e. when God isn't present. 

But there can't be absolute evil, because god is omnipresent, right?

-Triften 

Edison Trent's picture

triften wrote: Edison

triften wrote:
Edison Trent wrote:

There is absolute evil too, i.e. when God isn't present.

But there can't be absolute evil, because god is omnipresent, right?

-Triften

I consider it false that the God of the Bible is omnipresent, especially in the sense of omnipresence that pantheism represents.  If you have any points or verses in the Bible that contradict this feel free to challenge me.

Archeopteryx's picture

Edison Trent wrote:

Edison Trent wrote:

aiia, you are the one who doesn't get it. Darkness doesn't really exist. It is the absence of light. Cold doesn't really exist. It is the absence of heat. Evil doesn't really exist. It is the absence of God. And there are absolutes for all of these. There is absolute cold, i.e. 0 Kelvins, at which no motion is present. There is absolute darkness, i.e. no light is present.

This argument didn't work the last time I rebutted it! So I suppose I'll just copy and paste. Maybe I'll add a few more road signs to boot.


From last time:

 

Quote:

I'm going to go out on a limb here. Evil is the absense of God. I don't think that God is everywhere (yes, i know, Heresy! Heresey! Hang him! Stone him!), especially in the pantheistic view of "god". When man took his focus off God and put it onto himself, God was absent from his thoughts. Man became selfish and corrupted, having eaten of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Fail.

If evil is the absence of god in the same sense that darkness is the absence of light, and if god doesn't exist everywhere (those are your words, by the way), then evil must have always existed [since God cannot be everywhere at once and there must have therefore always been evil wherever God was not.]

Since your contention is that god cannot tolerate evil, how can you also say (indirectly, by way of what was shown above) that evil is as eternal as god? If he was going to rid the world of evil, he had an entire infinity in which to do it. And that's before we even got here!

Evil is as eternal as god?

Evil is as powerful as god (or at least powerful enough to compete)?

Evil is at least equally present, or more present than god?

In the beginning, there wasn't just god, but there was evil, too?

So you've acknowledged that god is not all present. Thanks! But you've now indirectly stated that he is not supreme or all powerful either. Thanks!

Since god is apparently not evil in any way whatsoever, then he is also not all knowing. If he knew everything, he would not only know about evil, but he would know how to be evil, or how to avoid it. (After all, according to his rules, if you thought it, you said it/did it). Hm. Perhaps he is only capable of knowing of evil, but how does that make him different from us?

 

The major problem with your explanation, though, is that it defines good and evil in terms of degree or as a gradient. Much like temperature, there isn't just a hot and a cold, there is an entire continuum of temperatures. Like light and darkness (your analogy), there isn't just light and dark, there is an entire continuum of luminescence. Like color, there isn't just black and white, but there is also an entire continuum we call the gray scale.

The problem with positing such a continuum is that, no matter where along the continuum our observation lies, we can always point to something higher or lower in the continuum. No matter how hot something is, we can say "Well X is even hotter than that." No matter how light something is, we can always say, "Well X is even lighter than that." No matter how GOOD something is, we can always say, "Well X is even more good than that." Which means that no matter how good god is, we can always say, Well X is even better than god. No matter how evil satan is, we can say: well, X is even worse than satan. And since we can always imagine something with greater or lesser value along the continuum, there is no perfect value on the continuum, which means that no matter how good god might be, he is also evil compared to whatever is higher (even if what is higher is only potential\possible and not actual).

Furthermore, your comparing good/evil to hot/cold or light/dark is misleading because it attempts to put good/evil on the same empirical footing, and it clearly does not belong there.

(For example, you mentioned above the absolute cold is 0 kelvins. Well, then what is absolute hot? Answer: there is no such thing. In fact, to persist in tying yourself so tightly to this analogy would force you into the position there is such a thing as absolute evil, but there is no such thing as absolute good, which would be very troublesome to your position, I would think. This analogy is kaput).

On the other hand, if good and evil are mutually exclusive (in a heads or tails fashion), then god is either evil or he's not. He's either good or he's not.

 

Quote:

God, being perfect, cannot accept imperfection, thus Adam and Eve were banished out of the garden.

They were banished for becoming more like god (his words), not because they became more imperfect. If God is perfect, and if they became more like God by eating the fruit, then it is only logical to conclude that they became MORE perfect. Therefore, they were more imperfect beforehand and god banished them only after they became less imperfect.

Hm. Interesting.

 

Quote:

The Bible says God created evil, only in the same way He created darkness. He created light, and wherever there is no light, we have darkness. Similarly, wherever there is no good, there is evil.

First of all, what? God created himself then? How does that work? [The point here was twofold: first, that the absence of light is the absence of light. Period. You don't need to create light to HAVE THE ABSENCE OF LIGHT. Before you create light, is it not absent? What do you then have? Darkness! You only need to create light to understand that something else is possible. Great. Moving on. So before light, only darkness was possible. By this analogy, the speaker is saying that, before god, only evil existed and only evil was possible. But his analogy suggests that there was a time when God did not exist. If evil didn't exist until good arrived, then there was a time of only evil. And, apparently, in order for God to come into existence, he had to create himself? But if God always existed, then good didn't have to be created first in order for there to be evil. Obviously, this line of reasoning doesn't work.]

I've already answered this above, but I will restate that this (the fact that good and evil both exist without depending on the other) would mean that evil always existed along with god ( "perfect goodness" ) and that god, to this day, has been unable to conquer evil, which means that evil is at least as powerful, if not more powerful, than god.

Hm.

 

Quote:

And that makes sense. Evil is not a object thing. Evil is the twisting of, or opposition to good. For example work is good, working to the point of ignoring your family is bad.

Hm. But having premarital sex is bad, but not having premarital sex is supposedly good. Hm....

So clearly evil is not always a lack of action. It is also sometimes an action. Good is not always an action; it is sometimes a lack of action.

This sort of quantitative explanation doesn't seem to match up.

 


 

So there's a recap for you.

Quote:

There is absolute evil too

See above.

Quote:

I'll give some examples. When Satan took this thoughts off of God and put them on himself, he was sinning.

It's kind of strange how Satan was able to do that, since he was not only one of God's creations, but he was an angel of all things!

If God didn't want us to be able to do X, he shouldn't have created us with the innate capacity for X, and then told us to ignore it. That's not us sinning, that's God being a shitty engineer.

And he didn't just do it once, he apparently did it twice: man AND angels. Does his incompetence know no bounds!?

Secondly, every time I'm not thinking about God, then, I'm sinning? If I'm thinking of cotton candy, that makes me a sinner or more likely to sin?

If I were to be thinking of something like... oh... naked women. Then my thoughts wouldn't be on God, but I'd already be thinking of sin, so that would just be circular reasoning.

Also, Satan's mind wasn't off of God. He was thinking about overthrowing him. He wasn't NOT thinking about God. He was just thinking about him in a way that God didn't like. But, again, that was God's shortcoming as an engineer, I'd say.

Quote:

When Adam and Eve took their thoughts off of God and put them on themselves, they sinned by eating of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

But if they were perfectly innocent, how were they capable of such sin? Even if they did the sin by accident, how could you call them a sinner? (for example, when a toddler says "shit" not knowing what it means---he just heard someone on a movie say it---can you really spank him and make him eat soap right then?)

Also, if God didn't want them to touch the tree, why the hell did he put it there? (Here, two-year-old boy. I have some cookies here. I'm going to leave for an hour and put these carton of cookies here, resting wiiiiide open. Don't touch them though! Bye!)

As Douglas Adams once wrote (paraphrasing): Anyone who attempts to get you by putting a brick under a hat probably isn't going to give up on the first try.

Lastly, the story of Adam and Eve isn't real. It's stolen from the stories in the literature of previous religions. For example, Eden and A&E both appear (along with Noah's Ark!) in the Epic of Gilgamesh, although all the characters have different names.

 

Quote:

What more of an explanation do you want?

One that doesn't have science, history, and logic incredibly stacked against it.

The only way you can apologetically "prove" God is by just making things up, which is very appropriate since that's God came about in the first place.

Ciao!

A place common to all will be maintained by none. A religion common to all is perhaps not much different.