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Author Topic:   Do Christians Worship Different Gods?
Granny Magda
Member
Posts: 2380
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007


(2)
Message 226 of 286 (633917)
09-17-2011 4:37 AM
Reply to: Message 217 by jaywill
09-13-2011 3:15 PM


Hi Jaywill,

It is very difficult to suggest the New Testament supports the slavery of the kind my forebearers were of (being African American).

That only makes your latest extended apologetic for slavery even more nauseating. You really ought to know better.

Paul wrote that kidnapping was an unrighteous act. And Paul mentions it along with fornicators, homosexuals, liars, perjurers and murderers -

As bad as HOMOSEXUALS! OH MY GOD!

Point 1) That Paul lists kidnapping alongside homosexuality only serves to underline my point that his outdated views are morally bankrupt and of no use as a moral guide to a modern person.

Point 2) Kidnapping and slavery are not synonyms. You go on about this kidnapping business at some length, but it's all a waste, because kidnapping and slavery are different things.

Not all slaves in Rome were kidnapped. Probably more were born to slavery. Romans could and did sell their children into slavery. Abandoned infants were taken as slaves. There was no kidnapping in these cases. The image of slaves being dragged from their homes screaming for help not an entirely inaccurate one, but it was far from universal.

The passage you cite condemns kidnapping, but not slavery. That is exactly why I am saying that the NT should, if we are to take it as a supreme moral guide, clearly condemn slavery. This does not meet that simple standard.

Well one place he tells the masters to give to the slaves what is just and equal:

"Masters, grant to your slaves that which is just and equal, knowing that you also have a Master in heaven." (Col. 3:4)

A passage telling people how to treat their slaves is an argument against slavery? Are you freaking kidding me? In the Bizarro World Bible perhaps.

Jay, that is evidence that Paul supported slavery. He may have done so reluctantly or with caveats, but this passage clearly shows that Paul was not dedicated to condemning slavery. Quite the opposite in fact.

"Slaves, obey in all things those who are your masters according to the flesh, not with eue-service as men-pleasers, but in singlenessof heart fearing the Lord." (Col. 3:22)

These kinds of passages slaver owners in the US loved to support their kidnapping and fornication. But the abolishonist also could point to passages arguing against them.

But those passages are, as I originally said, unclear at best, requiring interpretation, likely the same kind of flawed interpretation that you present above.

The pro-slavery quote on the other hand is very clear indeed. It tells us to obey our slave-masters. Thus, it can only be in support of slavery. There is no other possible interpretation.

But hold on slave and slave master. It says this:

"For he who does unrighteously will receive what he unrightely did, and there is no respect of persons." (v.25)

Was the explicit condemnation of slavery in that passage written in invisible ink or something? Will it appear if i view on peek mode?

No. It won't appear because it isn't there. Again, no clear and explicit condemnation of slavery. This from a book that is supposedly inspired by a timeless and transcendent omnibenevolent being. Frankly, I call bullshit. If the Bible were a product of the divine, it would be light years ahead of its time, ahead even of our time. Instead, it seems to be very much of its time, a product of the First Century, where slavery is the norm and women are second-class citizens.

And the Holy Spirit reserved one whole letter in the NT to deal with a Christian brother who was apparently a runaway slave of a Christian brother who was a master. It is quite interesting.

No. What is interesting is that this letter at no point says "Slavery is evil". Three little words, so easy to say. The fact that they are omitted is evidence of how morally stunted the early Christians were.

But it is still CHRIST centric and not social reform centric. Its focus is the building up of the church.

Yes, another of the Churches greatest failings. It concentrates on droning on about its imaginary friend instead of actually trying to make the world around us into a better place. What a tragic waste.

Mutate and Survive


This message is a reply to:
 Message 217 by jaywill, posted 09-13-2011 3:15 PM jaywill has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 242 by jaywill, posted 09-20-2011 2:24 PM Granny Magda has responded

    
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 227 of 286 (633951)
09-17-2011 11:57 AM
Reply to: Message 225 by Granny Magda
09-17-2011 4:13 AM


Re: Is Hell Just?
Hi Granny Magda

Granny Magda writes:

Except that this is extremely limited. Modulous has already pointed to the existence of ambiguous ethical problems, of which countless examples exist. There are also other problems with this notion; there are plenty of people who manifestly do not know the difference between right and wrong. Those who are too young for instance, those who are so old that their moral values will strike a younger generation as offensive. There are the criminally insane. There are people who simply lack the necessary intellect to grasp the question. There are people who are born with severe personality disorders, like psychopathy or sociopathy, who, lacking the empathy that would inform the normal person's conscience, have difficulty distinguishing right from wrong.

I agree that an apparently inbuilt moral sense exists, but I differ from you in your claim that this sense is solid and dependable enough to make such serious judgements as those involving an eternal afterlife, especially a hellish one.

The thing is that you and Modulous keep insisting the kind of god that fundamentalists worship. You want to know to know the minimum entry requirements for an afterlife with God and what specifically you have to do to avoid Hell.

I agree that right and wrong won't necessarily always be the same for everyone. I also agree that there are those with mental disorders, or are too young to comprehend. It isn't directly about right and wrong IMHO. I contend that it is more about who we are deep down. The question as I see it, as I have said numerous times, is how do we love. Do we love selfishly, (it's all about me), or do we love unselfishly, (it is all about others). Certainly, virtually nobody is all one way or another but in the end we choose which world we want to live in, with life with God the characterized by the former and Hell being characterized by the latter.

Granny Magda writes:

Well then, God really screwed up by giving us holy texts.

As I see it, you can't have this both ways. Either our innate moral sense is sufficient or we need holy texts. If we don't need the texts, they are nothing but a hindrance and, at worst, a liability, as they have been used to justify untold acts of evil.

Once again you are taking a fundamentalist approach to the Bible. The Bible isn't a book that is all about how to get on the right side of God. Yes, it does talk about that but primarily it is a story about God, through His created beings, working with creation. It is a story starting with creation and ending with new creation or re-creation.

Man will always find a way to justify acts of evil. If it hadnít been religion we would have found, and would continue to find, some other way. Maybe if it wasn't for holy texts we would think that we wouldn't even have to bother justifying it.

Granny Magda writes:

Have you looked out of your window? It looks like that

If I am correct and God withdrew from us I think the world would look very different indeed, but that is JMHO.

Granny Magda writes:

I consider the "forgiving" part of that to be incompatible with eternal suffering.

But if we are to be forgiven we have to accept forgiveness, and why would we want to force someone into an eternity that they reject and want no part of.

Granny Magda writes:

I'm sorry, but I just think that's wishful thinking. Do you really believe that no-one ever committed an evil act, convinced at the time that they were doing good?

Absolutely because they have misconstrued good and evil. Good is a desire that others have maximum joy and minimum suffering. Of course life sometimes isn't that cut and dried and the answers aren't easy but the question is still about what and who we love. What is it that at the very bottom of our heart motivates us?

Granny Magda writes:

You paint too rosy a picture of Roman slavery. It was still abominable. More on this below.

Of course it was, but Jesus was preaching to the Jews who had their own history of slavery which looked quite different from the Romans. As for Paul, he said "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus".

The whole message of equality and love is consistent with abolishing slavery. If one wants to cherry pick verses you can frankly make the Bible say anything you want pretty much. I point out again that it was Christians like Wilberforce and Newton that were prime movers for abolition.


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 225 by Granny Magda, posted 09-17-2011 4:13 AM Granny Magda has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 228 by Theodoric, posted 09-17-2011 1:21 PM GDR has responded
 Message 232 by Granny Magda, posted 09-19-2011 10:05 AM GDR has responded
 Message 233 by Modulous, posted 09-19-2011 11:27 AM GDR has not yet responded

    
Theodoric
Member
Posts: 5954
From: Northwest, WI, USA
Joined: 08-15-2005
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 228 of 286 (633961)
09-17-2011 1:21 PM
Reply to: Message 227 by GDR
09-17-2011 11:57 AM


Slavery revisionism?
Of course it was, but Jesus was preaching to the Jews who had their own history of slavery which looked quite different from the Romans.

Can you expound on this statement? I am not sure I understand what you are getting at. Is your statement that Jews were slaves or that they treated slaves differently than the Romans?


Facts don't lie or have an agenda. Facts are just facts

This message is a reply to:
 Message 227 by GDR, posted 09-17-2011 11:57 AM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
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GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 229 of 286 (633976)
09-17-2011 5:22 PM
Reply to: Message 228 by Theodoric
09-17-2011 1:21 PM


Re: Slavery revisionism?
Theodoric writes:

Can you expound on this statement? I am not sure I understand what you are getting at. Is your statement that Jews were slaves or that they treated slaves differently than the Romans?

On re-reading what I wrote I can sure see why you found my meaning a little hard to decipher.

I just meant that the Jewish people had a long history of themselves being enslaved and as a result wouldn't have been well disposed to it, which is quite different than the Roman experience obviously.


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 228 by Theodoric, posted 09-17-2011 1:21 PM Theodoric has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 230 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-18-2011 4:00 AM GDR has responded

    
Dr Adequate
Member
Posts: 16086
Joined: 07-20-2006
Member Rating: 10.0


Message 230 of 286 (634003)
09-18-2011 4:00 AM
Reply to: Message 229 by GDR
09-17-2011 5:22 PM


Re: Slavery revisionism?
I just meant that the Jewish people had a long history of themselves being enslaved and as a result wouldn't have been well disposed to it, which is quite different than the Roman experience obviously.

And the Romans, having groaned under the Etruscan heel, would presumably have been devout anti-Imperialists.

People don't think like that. They think that their nation is special (the Jews are downright notorious for thinking that their nation is special). This is why the British proudly sang "Britons never never never shall be slaves" while forming the linchpin of the slave trade and subjugating every nation they could get their hands on. Just because they were keen on other people not doing it to them didn't mean that they didn't want to do it to other people.

In the same way, the Jews might have objected to the way the unclean Gentiles treated God's chosen people while thinking it perfectly OK for God's chosen people to subjugate the lesser breeds without the Law.

Did their experiences of being on the sharp end of the military stick make them devout pacifists? Has that, in fact, happened to any nation ever?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 229 by GDR, posted 09-17-2011 5:22 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 231 by GDR, posted 09-18-2011 12:13 PM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 231 of 286 (634036)
09-18-2011 12:13 PM
Reply to: Message 230 by Dr Adequate
09-18-2011 4:00 AM


Re: Slavery revisionism?
Hi Dr A

Well put. I have to agree with you that in all likelihood given half a chance most of the Jews would have loved to have a few Roman slaves around to do their bidding. That does seem to be the way the world functioned at that time. It seems unbelievable that just a very few generations ago we had slavery in our own cultures and segregation in my life time.

However at the time of Jesus that wasn't the issue. The issue that Jesus addressed was how the Jews were to deal with the Romans in the situation they were in.


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 230 by Dr Adequate, posted 09-18-2011 4:00 AM Dr Adequate has not yet responded

    
Granny Magda
Member
Posts: 2380
From: UK
Joined: 11-12-2007


Message 232 of 286 (634110)
09-19-2011 10:05 AM
Reply to: Message 227 by GDR
09-17-2011 11:57 AM


Re: Is Hell Just?
The thing is that you and Modulous keep insisting the kind of god that fundamentalists worship.

Well, with all due respect to you, in some ways I think that the Fundamentalist versions of Christianity make more sense. They fail completely when compared to reality, but I think that they have a stronger sense of internal consistency than modern liberal Christianity. Most forms of modern Christianity are just too nebulous for my tastes. They amount to so little.

It isn't directly about right and wrong IMHO. I contend that it is more about who we are deep down. The question as I see it, as I have said numerous times, is how do we love. Do we love selfishly, (it's all about me), or do we love unselfishly, (it is all about others). Certainly, virtually nobody is all one way or another but in the end we choose which world we want to live in, with life with God the characterized by the former and Hell being characterized by the latter.

I understand your argument here (I think) and I appreciate where you're coming from. I can see the appeal of this position. However I still think that you are oversimplifying. In reality I don't think it's possible to weigh peoples souls in this way. People are too complex and too contradictory for that. Most of the time we don't even realise what motivates our own actions. Further, I feel very strongly that many people who do wrong are to a great extent the prisoners of their environment. People brought up in terrible surroundings will often become terrible people, but who can say how they might have turned out had their circumstances been better. I think that you have gone to great pains to alleviate this problem and I also think that your version is far preferable to the fundy version. I just can't help but stick by my original feeling that any set-up where a single lifetime of mistakes leads to an eternity of suffering is an unbalanced and unfair system.

Man will always find a way to justify acts of evil.

That doesn't mean that God has to hand us another one and allow people to attach his name to it. That is a recipe for trouble and one very easily avoided.

Maybe if it wasn't for holy texts we would think that we wouldn't even have to bother justifying it.

I think that the rich secular philosophy of the ancient Greeks proves this idea to be untrue.

But if we are to be forgiven we have to accept forgiveness, and why would we want to force someone into an eternity that they reject and want no part of.

I don't see how that is any worse than forcing the into a binary choice with eternal consequences. Plus, you're assuming that, were they in possession of all the facts, the wrongdoers would still make the same choice. I don't think that is a reasonable assumption.

Absolutely because they have misconstrued good and evil.

But you said that we could all tell good from evil. Now you're saying that this choice that we must make, on the basis of that knowledge is actually based on something that can be misconstrued.

What is it that at the very bottom of our heart motivates us?

This leaves open the possibility that a person could do great harm, based upon good intentions, only to then be rewarded for it.

Of course it was, but Jesus was preaching to the Jews who had their own history of slavery which looked quite different from the Romans.

And given the history of enslavement that the Jewish people had experienced, one might think that they would have made an extremely receptive audience for an anti-slavery message. All the more reason for Jesus to broach the subject. If he did though, we've never heard it.

As for Paul, he said "There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus".

In my opinion, that is a pretty stupid thing to say when there were slaves, thousands of them. Try telling them that there was no difference between them and their masters. This is a cop-out, a rationalisation for humanity's failure to create justice here in the real world. It's a bad excuse. God is not going to step in and make everything all right, it's up to us to do that. Paul's words discourage that.

The whole message of equality and love is consistent with abolishing slavery.

Not as consistent as the verses that tell us how to be good little slaves are consistent with slavery. That is not cherry picking.

Mutate and Survive


This message is a reply to:
 Message 227 by GDR, posted 09-17-2011 11:57 AM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 234 by GDR, posted 09-19-2011 3:30 PM Granny Magda has responded

    
Modulous
Member (Idle past 184 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 233 of 286 (634118)
09-19-2011 11:27 AM
Reply to: Message 227 by GDR
09-17-2011 11:57 AM


The ambiguity of the vagueness
The thing is that you and Modulous keep insisting the kind of god that fundamentalists worship.

Not at all. If you want to claim that the way to morality is through God, and the way to understand God's morality is to consult the Bible where it says, in simple terms 'Be moral', that this is ambiguous to the point of uselessness as far as applying it to practical life. I never said anything about the god of the fundamentalists and my criticism applies to anyone that suggests that Bible has anything relevant or useful to say about morality - whether they are fundamentalist or not.

It is this ambiguity that leads to different conceptions of who and what god is, even amongst those that agree which source is the relevant one. abe: so yes, it leads to the fundamentalist god and the liberal god and others besides.

Edited by Modulous, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 227 by GDR, posted 09-17-2011 11:57 AM GDR has not yet responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 234 of 286 (634141)
09-19-2011 3:30 PM
Reply to: Message 232 by Granny Magda
09-19-2011 10:05 AM


Re: Is Hell Just?
Granny Magda writes:

Well, with all due respect to you, in some ways I think that the Fundamentalist versions of Christianity make more sense. They fail completely when compared to reality, but I think that they have a stronger sense of internal consistency than modern liberal Christianity. Most forms of modern Christianity are just too nebulous for my tastes. They amount to so little.

Modulous writes:

Not at all. If you want to claim that the way to morality is through God, and the way to understand God's morality is to consult the Bible where it says, in simple terms 'Be moral', that this is ambiguous to the point of uselessness as far as applying it to practical life. I never said anything about the god of the fundamentalists and my criticism applies to anyone that suggests that Bible has anything relevant or useful to say about morality - whether they are fundamentalist or not.

It is this ambiguity that leads to different conceptions of who and what god is, even amongst those that agree which source is the relevant one. abe: so yes, it leads to the fundamentalist god and the liberal god and others besides.

I want to try and condense the discussion down to this point, and I'll answer both of you with the one post.

You guys want absolute black and white answers from the Bible. It isn't a collection of books written in order for people to know exactly what they have to do to go to heaven and avoid hell. Yes, the fundamentalists will give you an answer, while at the same time ignoring verses like Matthew 7: 21-23.

The Bible is written to tell the story of what God has done, is doing and planning to do in the world. It is the story of the people to whom God revealed the earliest truths through their mythologies. Through revelation implanted on human imaginations he revealed things like the ten commandments and the concept of loving their neighbours. Later books like Isaiah and Daniel foretell the messiah that will be sent by God.

The Bible tells the story of the early Jews with all of their successes and failures. Yes they had the the teachings of Moses, but they were also heavily influenced by their more powerful pagan neighbours. The story of the church since the time of Christ would look very much the same. In the name of the church there have been terrible atrocities but there have also been successes.

The Bible tells us the story of Jesus as Messiah, the anointed one who would fulfill all of the laws and the prophets, establish His Kingdom, and embody the return of Yahweh to Israel.

The Bible tells us the story of His mission on Earth of His crucifixion and resurrection. It tells of His return in a resurrected body that is similar and yet dissimilar from a normal human body.

The Bible tells us that at the end of time that God will make all things new. This world will be re-created and God's heaven and our Earth will become one.
I am quite prepared to agree that faith is involved. You can ask the question of why I believe that God didnít advocate genocide but do believe that God did resurrect Jesus. I could go into the arguments of why the resurrection should be viewed historically but in the end we believe it or we donít. Regardless of the worldview that we hold we hold it on faith. I canít prove that we live in a theistic world, let alone the world of the Christian God, just as there is no proof we live in an atheistic world.

To go back to the original point I do believe the Bible is a very important book, but it isnít a book written in the form of rules and regulations as to how we are to live our lives. I contend that using it like a rule book just diminishes the great story that is being told.


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 232 by Granny Magda, posted 09-19-2011 10:05 AM Granny Magda has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 236 by saab93f, posted 09-20-2011 1:51 AM GDR has responded
 Message 238 by Modulous, posted 09-20-2011 12:16 PM GDR has responded
 Message 257 by Granny Magda, posted 09-22-2011 10:09 AM GDR has responded

    
Jazzns
Member (Idle past 1992 days)
Posts: 2657
From: A Better America
Joined: 07-23-2004


Message 235 of 286 (634145)
09-19-2011 4:14 PM
Reply to: Message 224 by GDR
09-14-2011 10:27 PM


God of the imagination versus a god of destruction
The question is why are we wired that way. You are right in that I cant say that a higher power must exist but I can IMHO claim that subjectively it isnt an unreasonable conclusion.

Subjectively based on what though? And if nothing, how can you claim that it is not unreasonable? You keep bringing up subjectivity as if it was this great equalizing force for things which arent totally objective.

In fact, that you are staking out a claim for which there is much material evidence and understanding AGAINST means precisely that it is unreasonable. There are perfectly good, evidence based explanations for why we are "wired that way". Your choice to disregard those explanations has no basis except to prop up the construction of your deity. It seems that if there are no gaps or they are too small, there apparently is no room for GDRs god.

A prime mover either exists or doesnt exist . That fact remains the same whether the truth is knowable or not, so all we can do is consider the likelihood one way or another. It is my opinion that it is highly unlikely that all of the feelings that you describe in the paragraph I just quoted would come from a non-feeling, non intelligent, non-moral source. The question is not a scientific one. It is either philosophical or theological.

Then it seems to me that the philosophy of opinion is pretty much useless. I dont mean to be so harsh here because I actually very much respect your position. It was mine for many years. I can agree with you that the answer to the simple question of existence of god is ultimately one of personal opinion, but all of the other things you are wanting me to share the burden of subjectivity on will remain in dispute.

I agree that it is possible that we cant know the answer but it does seem sensible to me that if a prime mover does exist, and we consider the fact that we are wired to attempt to find answers about our existence, whether it be by scientific, philosophical or theological means, then I contend that indicates that we can at least have indications of some things about that prime mover.

If the prime mover exists then our curiosity about ourselves is evidence of the prime mover? I dont think so GDR, I am sorry. It just does not follow.
Our curiosity is evidence only of our curiosity. Existence of your god is not at all.

I know you havent claimed that the world has no meaning, but I did if it is based on the assumption that the material world is all there is. If our material world as we perceive it is all there is then I can see no ultimate meaning to it. We know scientifically that at some point this world will end, even though it may take billions of years. If all that we know ceases to exist and there isnt so much as a memory left then there is no ultimate meaning to the universe.

The assumption that is the flaw in your denial is that ultimate meaning must be eternally persistent. I had a hard time with this too until I realized how my upbringing had me caught up in notions of forever. Everything that we know exists for awhile and then ceases to exist. Why the universe ought to be any different is simply an injection of your own personal desire for such a meaning to be timeless.

Emotions and ideas are non-material things that we experience now so it isnt unreasonable to conclude that there is more that is non-material which might allow for a prime mover.

I want to be very careful with what we are talking about because you are claiming that these things are non-material when what I said is that they do not, "matter in the materialistic sense."
You are going to have to take a step back and tell me what a non-material emotion or idea is.
Then after you do that, you will have to explain how the existence of non-material emotions or ideas suggest the presence of other non-material "thingies" (you didnt name them) that allow for a prime mover.

I think in trying to clarify the situation, you have in fact made it much muddier.

My contention is that if we are on our own are completely responsible for our good nature, we are more likely to be prideful of that good nature than if we attribute that same good nature, at least in part, to a moral prime mover.

Again based on what? Dont you think that we would appreciate it more if we had to earn it? This is especially since we probably would have had to learn a lot of really tough lessons along the way.
Just look at our values. We value public education because we struggled for a long time until we figured out that trying to give everyone an education was good for all of us. Now it is considered child abuse to deny a child an education in this country. There was no moral authority responsible for that.

And moreover, how is being humble about our sense of kindness and justice necessarily a good thing? I should have challenged you about that originally but the point remains thus. We VALUE a morality that we create more than the ones that are supposedly ordained! See for example the abject failure of the "divinely inspired" morality of chastity. Who thought up that stupid idea?

So its not just that our morality is better because we created it. Gods morality is WORSE because it is contrary to our nature that if he does exist, would be responsible for giving us.

My point was, just as the evolutionary process describes the mechanism for how it occurred, what you are referring to is the potential discovery of the mechanism that produced moral beings. Science may find a mechanism that has produced morality but it tells us nothing about first cause. If you want to call that a philosophy of the gaps ok, but what philosophy is there then that wouldnt fall into that category? If my conclusion is god of the gaps it is no more so than any other conclusion including atheism. It is just a subjective conclusion based on what we know or think we know.

Well, again you are just trying to equalize thing by claiming subjectivity. My point was one primarily of plausibility and that even the most outlandish material cause is much more plausible than the, I dont know, therefore god argument. At least in the material case we have something we can investigate with the familiar tools of science. You have nothing but your own opinion on the matter otherwise.

Its not a philosophy of the gaps because I dont fill it with something. I leave it as a gap. I can speculate but it is still a gap and I am okay with the existence of the gap. You on the other hand are filling that gap with your own mental creation. Your own god.

Well Im not sure that uncertainty is beautiful. Im glad our scientists dont feel that way.

They do feel that way or else they wouldnt strive to do science. If the unknown wasnt beautiful they wouldnt be working their entire lives to probe its depths. They might not use the same words as I choose. They might not say, "uncertainty is beautiful". But the sentiment is exactly the same and is what I mean by that. Once again I think you missed the mark by 180 degrees.

As I said, Im just seeking the truth. My views on what I perceive as truth have been adjusted over the years. In the end, no matter what we believe there is some level of uncertainty, but frankly Im very comfortable and fairly confident that most of what I believe is essentially correct.

But how much of your god remains after the intellectual fire sale you have to have to make him work?
I despise ianos god but at the very least his god has something very substantial over yours. He claims to have had recent material effect on this world for his own sadistic purposes. His god is understood to be tangibly evident in the blood of children and the destruction of unworthy human civilization. Your god is not tangibly evident in anything and must only be sensed in abstract imaginings of the unknown.

How is a sinner to choose which god to revere?

Edited by Jazzns, : Some language fixes. For some reason quotations marks are disappearing from my messages.


BUT if objects for gratitude and admiration are our desire, do they not present themselves every hour to our eyes? Do we not see a fair creation prepared to receive us the instant we are born --a world furnished to our hands, that cost us nothing? Is it we that light up the sun; that pour down the rain; and fill the earth with abundance? Whether we sleep or wake, the vast machinery of the universe still goes on. Are these things, and the blessings they indicate in future, nothing to, us? Can our gross feelings be excited by no other subjects than tragedy and suicide? Or is the gloomy pride of man become so intolerable, that nothing can flatter it but a sacrifice of the Creator? --Thomas Paine

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 Message 224 by GDR, posted 09-14-2011 10:27 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 250 by GDR, posted 09-21-2011 3:03 PM Jazzns has responded

  
saab93f
Member (Idle past 792 days)
Posts: 265
From: Finland
Joined: 12-17-2009


(1)
Message 236 of 286 (634224)
09-20-2011 1:51 AM
Reply to: Message 234 by GDR
09-19-2011 3:30 PM


Re: Is Hell Just?
Hi GDR,
I am an unbeliever or an atheist if you prefer that. It took me 36 years to allow myself be liberated from the shackles of state church the majority of my countrymen are annexed as babies.

I have been trying to bend over backwards to understand the lengths people are willing to go to interpret the Bible. To no avail - what I have been asking myself (and now you) is why on earth would an omniscient God have his story written in such an ambiguous way that arguments, fights and wars were more or less inevitable? Why could the Bible not be plain language and not parables or metaphors?

The thing you presumably accuse GM and Modulous about is just so blatantly obvious to someone (like me) who does not have Jesus in his heart. A God who cheerfully commands women and children to be slaughtered to make room for His chosen people is hard to accept as loving and caring. Then again it is just unbelievable (pun intended) that to save the world from mistakes that this omnipotent allowed in the 1st place, a hybrid (god/man) had to be tortured to death. To me that sounds at best an effort or explanation that a human writer could have come up with but not a divine way of handling things.

Edited by saab93f, : Typo


This message is a reply to:
 Message 234 by GDR, posted 09-19-2011 3:30 PM GDR has responded

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 Message 237 by GDR, posted 09-20-2011 11:40 AM saab93f has not yet responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 237 of 286 (634266)
09-20-2011 11:40 AM
Reply to: Message 236 by saab93f
09-20-2011 1:51 AM


Understanding the Bible
saab93f writes:

have been trying to bend over backwards to understand the lengths people are willing to go to interpret the Bible. To no avail - what I have been asking myself (and now you) is why on earth would an omniscient God have his story written in such an ambiguous way that arguments, fights and wars were more or less inevitable? Why could the Bible not be plain language and not parables or metaphors?

Because that's the way people wrote at the time those books were written. The Bible tells the story of God active in the lives of His people as told by men. It isn't a book ghost written by God. It has the cultural and personal biases of the authors told as part of the story.

saab73 writes:

The thing you presumably accuse GM and Modulous about is just so blatantly obvious to someone (like me) who does not have Jesus in his heart. A God who cheerfully commands women and children to be slaughtered to make room for His chosen people is hard to accept as loving and caring.

If you read back through this thread you will see that I don't believe in a god like that either. In this case, they either mistakenly believed that Yahweh had told them to commit that atrocity or the leaders concocted the idea in order to justify their actions to others. (Probably the latter.)

saab73 writes:

Then again it is just unbelievable (pun intended) that to save the world from mistakes that this omnipotent allowed in the 1st place, a hybrid (god/man) had to be tortured to death. To me that sounds at best an effort or explanation that a human writer could have come up with but not a divine way of handling things.

I don't agree that it was a mistake to allow us the ability to choose between right and wrong. If we have no choice we have no free will. It wasn't God that crucified Jesus - it was man. It was God that resurrected Jesus and gave Him new life.


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)

This message is a reply to:
 Message 236 by saab93f, posted 09-20-2011 1:51 AM saab93f has not yet responded

    
Modulous
Member (Idle past 184 days)
Posts: 7789
From: Manchester, UK
Joined: 05-01-2005


Message 238 of 286 (634272)
09-20-2011 12:16 PM
Reply to: Message 234 by GDR
09-19-2011 3:30 PM


different gods for different bods
You guys want absolute black and white answers from the Bible.

No I don't, my last post I thought I made that explicitly clear. I am saying that there are many ways to interpret the Bible, and these different methods of interpretation lead to different god concepts.

In your interpretation things are more grey. And it is these grey areas that lead to differences of opinion about what god wants or requires of us. These lead to different god concepts. This problem afflicts the fundamentalists, yes. But it also raises its head in your vision.

To go back to the original point I do believe the Bible is a very important book, but it isnít a book written in the form of rules and regulations as to how we are to live our lives. I contend that using it like a rule book just diminishes the great story that is being told.

And I think this proves that your god concept is quite different from that of a fundamentalist and any variety who believe the Bible should be seen as a guidebook of regulations, rules and laws which are to be obeyed.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 234 by GDR, posted 09-19-2011 3:30 PM GDR has responded

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 Message 239 by GDR, posted 09-20-2011 1:16 PM Modulous has acknowledged this reply

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 4782
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 1.5


Message 239 of 286 (634279)
09-20-2011 1:16 PM
Reply to: Message 238 by Modulous
09-20-2011 12:16 PM


Re: different gods for different bods
Modulous writes:

In your interpretation things are more grey. And it is these grey areas that lead to differences of opinion about what god wants or requires of us. These lead to different god concepts. This problem afflicts the fundamentalists, yes. But it also raises its head in your vision.

Mostly I agree. What I'd say to that though is that although it might lead to different conclusions in specific situations, what God wants of us is that we have a loving, humble, kind and just motivation for our actions.

Modulous writes:

And I think this proves that your god concept is quite different from that of a fundamentalist and any variety who believe the Bible should be seen as a guidebook of regulations, rules and laws which are to be obeyed.

I agree, which is the conclusion that I came to in my discussion with iano earlier on in this thread.


Everybody is entitled to my opinion. :)

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 Message 238 by Modulous, posted 09-20-2011 12:16 PM Modulous has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
 Message 240 by Straggler, posted 09-20-2011 1:34 PM GDR has responded

    
Straggler
Member
Posts: 10284
From: London England
Joined: 09-30-2006


Message 240 of 286 (634284)
09-20-2011 1:34 PM
Reply to: Message 239 by GDR
09-20-2011 1:16 PM


Re: different gods for different bods
So the conclusion here is that different flavours of Christian do indeed worship different gods. Is that correct?

Where do the "false" god concepts originate from......?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 239 by GDR, posted 09-20-2011 1:16 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 241 by hooah212002, posted 09-20-2011 2:22 PM Straggler has not yet responded
 Message 244 by GDR, posted 09-21-2011 2:28 AM Straggler has responded

  
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