Understanding through Discussion


Welcome! You are not logged in. [ Login ]
EvC Forum active members: 63 (9072 total)
61 online now:
nwr, Theodoric (2 members, 59 visitors)
Newest Member: FossilDiscovery
Post Volume: Total: 893,162 Year: 4,274/6,534 Month: 488/900 Week: 12/182 Day: 12/28 Hour: 0/0


Thread  Details

Email This Thread
Newer Topic | Older Topic
  
Author Topic:   Why would God write a book of lies and why would you worship such a being?
foreveryoung
Member (Idle past 752 days)
Posts: 921
Joined: 12-26-2011


Message 1 of 86 (670008)
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


I have seen a few Christians claim that many of what appears to be historical documents in the bible, actually did not occur at all. If the bible is book that is littered with stories that are pure fiction but that are conveyed in such a way to appear as legitimate, why would you trust anything else that it had to say? If you say some of it is true, is it only because it already agrees with you have decided for yourself to be true?

Replies to this message:
 Message 2 by Adminnemooseus, posted 08-08-2012 12:05 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 4 by Phat, posted 08-08-2012 1:18 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 5 by Huntard, posted 08-08-2012 1:27 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 6 by NoNukes, posted 08-08-2012 1:35 AM foreveryoung has replied
 Message 7 by PaulK, posted 08-08-2012 1:41 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 8 by purpledawn, posted 08-08-2012 2:07 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 9 by Dr Adequate, posted 08-08-2012 4:09 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 10 by Taz, posted 08-08-2012 4:35 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 13 by jar, posted 08-08-2012 8:27 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 16 by Artemis Entreri, posted 08-08-2012 9:28 AM foreveryoung has replied
 Message 18 by New Cat's Eye, posted 08-08-2012 10:33 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 21 by Jazzns, posted 08-08-2012 10:54 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 26 by nwr, posted 08-08-2012 1:24 PM foreveryoung has replied
 Message 52 by caffeine, posted 08-10-2012 6:39 AM foreveryoung has taken no action
 Message 64 by Hawkins, posted 09-07-2012 2:31 PM foreveryoung has taken no action

  
Adminnemooseus
Administrator
Posts: 3958
Joined: 09-26-2002
Member Rating: 5.2


(1)
Message 2 of 86 (670009)
08-08-2012 12:05 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by foreveryoung
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


Pre-promotion comments
I declared the topic title question to be off-topic here.

As I see it, this question should be approached as a philosophical and/or theological discussion. I want to isolate it from scientific evidence considerations - It is NOT going into the science "The Bible: Accuracy and Inerrancy" forum.

I think the topic title, "Why would God write a book of lies and why would you worship such a being?", actually sets the "what if" premise that some of the information in the Bible is factually wrong - It is in conflict with worldly evidence. Then the question is, then what is the Bible's philosophical and/or theological value?

OR SOMETHING LIKE THAT.

Of course, Jar's first message is going to be:

Jar writes:

God didn't write the Bible, man did.

Let's see if this prophesy comes true.

Adminnemooseus

ps: And dammit, everyone be nice or I'm going to have to kill someone.

Edited by Adminnemooseus, : ps.


Or something like that©.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by foreveryoung, posted 08-07-2012 11:38 PM foreveryoung has taken no action

Replies to this message:
 Message 31 by Adminnemooseus, posted 08-08-2012 7:48 PM Adminnemooseus has seen this message

  
Adminnemooseus
Administrator
Posts: 3958
Joined: 09-26-2002
Member Rating: 5.2


Message 3 of 86 (670011)
08-08-2012 12:09 AM


Thread Copied from Proposed New Topics Forum

  
Phat
Member
Posts: 15935
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.3


Message 4 of 86 (670012)
08-08-2012 1:18 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by foreveryoung
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


philosophically speaking
If you say some of it is true, is it only because it already agrees with you have decided for yourself to be true?
Well....yes. I feel that I and only I can ultimately decide what I choose to believe in. For starters, when was it ever established that the books known as the Bible had to be true...without error...divinely inspired?

I believe that God exists, and I also believe that God wants a communion(some form of communication) with humanity on this planet. Beyond that, I question most of organized religious dogma and tradition. I have a mind, after all...and why shouldn't I dare to use it?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by foreveryoung, posted 08-07-2012 11:38 PM foreveryoung has taken no action

Replies to this message:
 Message 15 by Stile, posted 08-08-2012 8:51 AM Phat has seen this message

  
Huntard
Member (Idle past 1529 days)
Posts: 2870
From: Limburg, The Netherlands
Joined: 09-02-2008


(1)
Message 5 of 86 (670013)
08-08-2012 1:27 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by foreveryoung
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


Hello foreveryoung, nice to meet you.

foreveryoung writes:

If you say some of it is true, is it only because it already agrees with you have decided for yourself to be true?


Most probably, this is the case. There are probably some things that can be demonstrated to be true, i.e. Jerusalem exists. But for the more "miraculous" stuff, I'd say it comes down to personal preference. One wants to believe there is a god, and that he can do certain things (mostly because they were taught this belief as a child), the bible describes some of the things one imagines this god could do, and so, one believes those parts of the bible.

If the bible is book that is littered with stories that are pure fiction but that are conveyed in such a way to appear as legitimate, why would you trust anything else that it had to say?

Things can be learned from stories, even if they aren't true. Some of the lessons of Jesus are quite good, in my opinnion. Whether he existed or not is irrelevant to the fact that those stories convey a certain meaning. It's that meaning that can be of value, and the ultimate purpose of the stories, I'd say.

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by foreveryoung, posted 08-07-2012 11:38 PM foreveryoung has taken no action

  
NoNukes
Inactive Member


(2)
Message 6 of 86 (670014)
08-08-2012 1:35 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by foreveryoung
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


If the bible is book that is littered with stories that are pure fiction but that are conveyed in such a way to appear as legitimate

I always consider this question a rather strange thing for a Christian to ask. I could understand the question if asked from a Jewish perspective, but I don't find it a logical question from a born again Christian. I would expect that one Christian would completely understand how another Christian came to accept Christ. And very little of that experience has anything to do with Adam, Noah, Moses, David, or Sampson's escapades.

The stories in the Bible are conveyed as legitimate because the people writing the stories believed them to be true. However the further back into history the stories are set, the more disconnected are the events from the authors.

And how many of those events are essentially to Christianity anyway?


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

The apathy of the people is enough to make every statue leap from its pedestal and hasten the resurrection of the dead. William Lloyd Garrison


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by foreveryoung, posted 08-07-2012 11:38 PM foreveryoung has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 17 by foreveryoung, posted 08-08-2012 10:25 AM NoNukes has replied

  
PaulK
Member
Posts: 17167
Joined: 01-10-2003
Member Rating: 3.7


(1)
Message 7 of 86 (670015)
08-08-2012 1:41 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by foreveryoung
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


Here are some questions for you.

1) Who said that God wrote the Bible ? The Bible doesn't make such a claim itself. The most you can find is a vague assertion that some unspecified scriptures are "God-breathed" - in a letter generally accepted as a pseudonymous work from the 2nd Century AD.

2) Jesus told stories that were pure fiction to make a point. How do you know that there aren't other stories like that in the Bible ? (Job and Jonah come to mind as obvious candidates).

3) Exodus lacks even basic historical details that would let us set a date on the events (such as the names of the Pharaohs). Things we could expect to see in even an ordinary human account if it were written as a real history or even close to the time of events. Why is that, if it is not that Exodus is a legendary account written long after the events ?

4) Papias, an early Christian (writing no later than the 2nd Century) is quoted (by Eusebius, a Christian of the 3rd-4th Centuries) as saying that Mark wrote down events in the wrong order. If early Christians did not take the Gospels as inerrant, why should you ?

5) Inerrantists often claim that the Bible has to be interpreted on the assumption of inerrancy, and are known to come to readings on this basis that cannot be reasonably derived from a plain reading of the text. Doesn't this raise the same sort of problem ? If you can't understand the Bible without heavy interpretation assuming a doctrine which isn't even clearly taught in the Bible how can you know that your interpretations are correct ? Isn't that putting doctrine before the Bible ? Isn't it meant to be the other way around ?

{Careful - I'm trying to keep this from being a "The Bible: Accuracy and Inerrancy" type topic - Adminnemooseus}

{Upon further study, I think this message is ALMOST all off-topic - Adminnemooseus

Edited by Adminnemooseus, : Comment in red.

Edited by Adminnemooseus, : Make previous a larger print, and add off-topic banner and comment.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by foreveryoung, posted 08-07-2012 11:38 PM foreveryoung has taken no action

  
purpledawn
Member (Idle past 2691 days)
Posts: 4453
From: Indiana
Joined: 04-25-2004


(1)
Message 8 of 86 (670018)
08-08-2012 2:07 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by foreveryoung
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


Wisdom in Fiction
quote:
I have seen a few Christians claim that many of what appears to be historical documents in the bible, actually did not occur at all. If the bible is book that is littered with stories that are pure fiction but that are conveyed in such a way to appear as legitimate, why would you trust anything else that it had to say?
Storytelling through the ages wasn't just a means of entertainment. From what I can tell it was also a way of passing on information and wisdom.

The story may not be a true event, but the lesson is real. The parables that Jesus told weren't real events. They were designed to teach a lesson.

If one understands whether a writing is fiction or historical, then one trusts the information as is appropriate for the style of writing.

One doesn't look for a moral in an historical document and one doesn't usually look for historical facts in a fairy tale although fair tales can give us a view of the culture of the time.

quote:
f you say some of it is true, is it only because it already agrees with you have decided for yourself to be true?
Hopefully what we understand to be factual can be verified by sources outside the writing.

Ultimately we have to understand the writing techniques used by the writers to understand what the writers were telling their audience.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by foreveryoung, posted 08-07-2012 11:38 PM foreveryoung has taken no action

  
Dr Adequate
Member (Idle past 285 days)
Posts: 16112
Joined: 07-20-2006


Message 9 of 86 (670022)
08-08-2012 4:09 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by foreveryoung
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


I have seen a few Christians claim that many of what appears to be historical documents in the bible, actually did not occur at all. If the bible is book that is littered with stories that are pure fiction but that are conveyed in such a way to appear as legitimate, why would you trust anything else that it had to say? If you say some of it is true, is it only because it already agrees with you have decided for yourself to be true?

Well, don't we have to apply the same sort of process to anything purporting to be a historical source? If I want to know about the world in classical times, for example, I would be a fool to ignore Herodotus, but I would equally be a fool to believe everything he says --- and that was written all by one man.

The Bible is a compilation: it's more like if someone bound together everything the ancient Greeks said that had a bearing on history, from the Anabasis of Xenophon, which recounts events at which he was personally present, to the Theogony of Hesiod, which gives an account of the origin of the gods and which the poet attributes to divine inspiration. What would you make of such a volume? Would you take an all-or-nothing approach to it, and declare that either every word of it was true or that none of it could be given any credence?


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by foreveryoung, posted 08-07-2012 11:38 PM foreveryoung has taken no action

  
Taz
Member (Idle past 2525 days)
Posts: 5069
From: Zerus
Joined: 07-18-2006


(1)
Message 10 of 86 (670024)
08-08-2012 4:35 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by foreveryoung
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


Back when I was in college, I had a professor that was a Hebrew scholar. He was my ethics professor, actually. You could say he was the mentor who changed my mind about homosexuals.

Anyway, in one of our many discussions, he told me that after years of studying the old testament, he had become convinced that a lot of it was man's inability to understand god adequately. Now, remember that he was a true believer in god.

He pointed out to me that there were sections in the old testament where god outright commanded the israelites to slaughter entire civilizations. But then after those sections, god began to stop commanding outright and started negotiating as well as sending prophets. I used to be able to track down all the examples. This was back when I was still studying the bible very intensely.

The point is my ethics professor believed that whatever god commanded the isralites to do it sure as hell wasn't to kill every man, woman, and child of entire cities like Jericho. After a while, god realized that the barbarians kept misunderstanding his commands, and so he started talking to them and sending prophets to make the communications earlier instead of sending them commands that kept getting misinterpreted.

This might be worth pursuing? After all, if you believe in the literal interpretation of the bible, you will have to accept that killing every man, woman, and child of a city to rob it of gold, silver, and brass is morally right. And don't even think you can weasel your way out of this.

OFF TOPIC
AdminPD

Edited by AdminPD, : Warning


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by foreveryoung, posted 08-07-2012 11:38 PM foreveryoung has taken no action

Replies to this message:
 Message 12 by Phat, posted 08-08-2012 7:59 AM Taz has replied
 Message 14 by AdminPD, posted 08-08-2012 8:41 AM Taz has taken no action

  
Larni
Member
Posts: 4000
From: Liverpool
Joined: 09-16-2005


Message 11 of 86 (670031)
08-08-2012 6:20 AM


Good Question
I think this is a good question.

As far as I'm aware Christians know their god via the Bible and that his character traits and behaviour patterns are rather explicitly layed out for all to see.

A litteral reading (to my admittedly un-scholarly approach) seems to indicate Yaweh is a jealous god who's love for his people is conditional

If these conditions are not met you go to Hell with all the dogs and wizards.

Now, when I was growing up all I ever heard was about how loving Yaweh is. That only real bastards went to Hell and it was just and right that these villains were condemed.

So my take is this: the Bible was and is a very, very strict set of rules for achieving the conditions Yaweh demands to keep you outr of Hell. Back in the day, these strictures were fine, but nower days killing members of the gay community or rape victims is frowned upon.

Consequently the inconvenient 'follow Yaweh's rules or go to Hell' became 'be generally nice and you will get to Heaven'.

I suspect most Christians don't know about Leviticus 20:13 and the like and edit out the gruesome bits where Yaweh demands babies be killed and genocide to the point where they are not following the 'official' Yaweh but their own culturally derived moral relativism and simply calling it 'Christianity'.

So techinically they are worshipping their version of Yaweh, rather than the Yaweh described in the Bible.

OFF TOPIC
AdminPD

Edited by AdminPD, : Warning


The above ontological example models the zero premise to BB theory. It does so by applying the relative uniformity assumption that the alleged zero event eventually ontologically progressed from the compressed alleged sub-microscopic chaos to bloom/expand into all of the present observable order, more than it models the Biblical record evidence for the existence of Jehovah, the maximal Biblical god designer.
-Attributed to Buzsaw Message 53

The explain to them any scientific investigation that explains the existence of things qualifies as science and as an explanation
-Attributed to Dawn Bertot Message 286

Does a query (thats a question Stile) that uses this physical reality, to look for an answer to its existence and properties become theoretical, considering its deductive conclusions are based against objective verifiable realities.
-Attributed to Dawn Bertot Message 134


  
Phat
Member
Posts: 15935
From: Denver,Colorado USA
Joined: 12-30-2003
Member Rating: 1.3


Message 12 of 86 (670036)
08-08-2012 7:59 AM
Reply to: Message 10 by Taz
08-08-2012 4:35 AM


the philosophy of belief/understanding
Taz writes:

After a while, god realized that the barbarians kept misunderstanding his commands, and so he started talking to them and sending prophets to make the communications earlier instead of sending them commands that kept getting misinterpreted.

Why would God, by definition,realize something only "after a while"? Does not God know all things including all human thoughts?

Of course, if we toss the Bible as a reference to how God is and how He behaves, we are then grasping at philosophical straws.

Larni writes:

As far as I'm aware Christians know their god via the Bible and that his character traits and behaviour patterns are rather explicitly layed out for all to see.

I will admit that the God I believe in is a construction within my mind. I also believe, however, that the actual GOD (whom I believe exists and would exist even if I didn't believe) accepts and works around human limitations concerning His reality.

Again, I believe that the GOD who is seeks communion with the minds and hearts of humanity.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by Taz, posted 08-08-2012 4:35 AM Taz has replied

Replies to this message:
 Message 27 by Taz, posted 08-08-2012 2:49 PM Phat has seen this message

  
jar
Member
Posts: 33891
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 2.8


(1)
Message 13 of 86 (670038)
08-08-2012 8:27 AM
Reply to: Message 1 by foreveryoung
08-07-2012 11:38 PM


Fiction and Lie are not synonymous
Well God did not write the Bible and there really isn't such a thing as "The Bible™" in the first place.

Fiction and Lie are not synonymous. Fiction is often a great way to convey a truth.

Honesty compels me to accept reality, even when that reality refutes something I really wished were true.

Stories such as the Biblical Flood myths or the Exodus or the Garden of Eden or the Conquest of Canaan or Jonah, or the Tower of Babel are not written in such a way to appear as legitimate; for example, Genesis 2&3 are clearly written as a "Just So" story meant to explain why childbirth seems more painful for humans, why we fear snakes, why humans wear clothes, why we farm instead of just being hunter gatherers.


Anyone so limited that they can only spell a word one way is severely handicapped!

This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by foreveryoung, posted 08-07-2012 11:38 PM foreveryoung has taken no action

  
AdminPD
Inactive Administrator


(1)
Message 14 of 86 (670042)
08-08-2012 8:41 AM
Reply to: Message 10 by Taz
08-08-2012 4:35 AM


Topic Please!!!!!
quote:
This might be worth pursuing? After all, if you believe in the literal interpretation of the bible, you will have to accept that killing every man, woman, and child of a city to rob it of gold, silver, and brass is morally right. And don't even think you can weasel your way out of this.
There's nothing to weasel out of since it isn't the point of the topic.

This thread isn't about morality and it isn't about the literal reading of the Bible. It is about how those who worship God as a Christian can do so given that they don't believe that the Bible stories are all historically true.

Stick to what is presented in the OP and not what you know of the author's beliefs.

Christians use various methods of Bible interpretation, but this thread is not about literalism.

Note to Participants: Please stick to the spirit of the topic, which is on the religious side in Faith and Belief.

Please direct any comments concerning this Administrative msg to the General Discussion Of Moderation Procedures (aka 'The Whine List') thread.

Thank you
AdminPD Purple


This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by Taz, posted 08-08-2012 4:35 AM Taz has taken no action

  
Stile
Member
Posts: 4065
From: Ontario, Canada
Joined: 12-02-2004
Member Rating: 2.9


(1)
Message 15 of 86 (670044)
08-08-2012 8:51 AM
Reply to: Message 4 by Phat
08-08-2012 1:18 AM


Re: philosophically speaking
Phat writes:

Well....yes. I feel that I and only I can ultimately decide what I choose to believe in.

I sure hope you feel that way. I hope all adults feel that way.
Who else should be deciding what an individual believes in other than that particular individual?

Just believing in something because others say you should is the basis for cults and brainwashing. Even if those "others" seem to have a level of authority about them. Especially if those "others" claim to have an absolute authority straight from God Himself.

If you can't be honest with yourself, you won't have the ability to be honest with God, or anyone else.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by Phat, posted 08-08-2012 1:18 AM Phat has seen this message

  
Newer Topic | Older Topic
Jump to:


Copyright 2001-2018 by EvC Forum, All Rights Reserved

™ Version 4.1
Innovative software from Qwixotic © 2022