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Author Topic:   Jesus Among Secular Gods
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 3 of 94 (863024)
09-18-2019 4:12 PM
Reply to: Message 1 by Phat
09-17-2019 1:11 PM


Hi Phat. Just a couple of thoughts.
TAP writes:

It reminds me of the behavior of some at this forum. *cough* jar...*cough* But to be fair, jar makes a case for ridiculing Biblical Christianity and Apologetics rather than Jesus or God....though he has mentioned that Jesus was far from perfect(supported by selected scripture) and that God was often portrayed as learning on the job.

I think that virtually all Christians consider themselves to be Biblical. I know that I certainly do. However, I am quite sure that Faith would say that I'm not. It is a question of how we are to understand the Bible and what does God have to say to us in our reading of it.

TPA writes:

jar may well argue that he is simply pointing out what the book says and that he has no agenda. I would argue that the overall agenda...from New Atheists and Logic Reason and Reality focused Jewish Christians is to reclaim religion as an intellectual, rather than spiritual pursuit.

I've said this before, but one of the lines that we use in one our prayers in church is: "so complex so simple, so clear so mysterious". Christianity is so simple. Live by the Golden Rule and God will be with you and nudging you toward that. When we want to get into the theology of Christianity it becomes considerably more complex and mysterious. (A lot like QM. )

TAP writes:

I especially liked the idea that not everything can be measured scientifically nor defined rationally according to strict logic. Belief should be respected, and philosophy can have power to change the world we live in. The issue in this book is what the various philosophies out there are and in what way they differ from the message that Jesus preached. More Later.

If we are going to live by the Golden Rule we can certainly argue for what it is that we believe, but nobody likes to have their beliefs mocked. From my POV it is a case of mocking people of faith when there they compare their faith with belief in, take your pick, Santa Claus, Easter bunny or the tooth fairy.

On the other hand, calling atheists godless heathens about to be damned to hell is hardly respectful.

TAP writes:

ringo asks again and again what these guys think of genesis 3 (that being the acid test of their sincerity) but how did we ever come to agree on what is honest versus what is dishonest?

I'm curious about what the answer is that you think ringo is looking for.

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 1 by Phat, posted 09-17-2019 1:11 PM Phat has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 4 by Phat, posted 09-24-2019 6:43 PM GDR has responded
 Message 6 by ICANT, posted 09-24-2019 11:13 PM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 8 of 94 (863364)
09-25-2019 11:00 AM
Reply to: Message 4 by Phat
09-24-2019 6:43 PM


Re: Barker on the Matter of Honesty
TAP writes:

I would imagine that he is on the lookout for someone--anyone--who can read the scripture plainly and without adding to or interpreting it arrive at the same conclusion which he and jar see as obvious. Regarding the question of honesty, I am reading both Dan Barkers and Ravi & Vince Vitales books concurrently. I see no reason to conclude that either side is being dishonest, though Barker says in his book the following:


I’d suggest that we can’t read the scripture plainly. The Bible was written between about 2000 and 2600 years ago. Even with the Gospels we have to understand that Jesus was a 1st century Jew speaking to first century Jews. We have to do our best to understand what is written from that perspective and then we can work and trying to understand what it would mean to us today.
Go back even to Genesis. To try and understand Genesis as if it were a newspaper account of what happened is ludicrous. It is early Jewish mythology and should be understood that way. That does not mean that there isn’t a great deal to be learned through that mythology IMHO.
Here is your Barker quote:
quote:
Someone once objected to my criticisms as attempts to “explain away” the proofs for a god. I am not trying to explain them away; I am trying to explain them. The success of this rational approach hinges on something that in theory everyone advocates, but in practice is quite elusive: a complete impartiality on both sides. I am willing to change my mind, but I don’t see many believers admitting even the possibility that they might be wrong—that they are the ones with the problem. Believers are usually only concerned with winning me to their views. Impartiality, which is adequate for mundane matters, seems always to cave into loyalty when religious matters are discussed. Since most believers’ religious views are something of an extension (or sometimes a replacement) of their personality, when you question their beliefs you are often perceived as attacking them personally—their identity within their religious culture and their meaning in life, moral code, honor, intelligence, judgment and everything they are as individuals. (“How dare you tell me that my loving grandmother lived her entire life believing a lie!”) Most of them have invested a lot of time, energy and money in their faith, and they aren’t apt to back off or “lose face.” They would rather earn devotion points within their co-believing community than give any credibility to some Lone Ranger atheist. Of course, none of this proves or disproves either position. If it did, that would be ad hominem. Christians may be loyal and dishonest, but they still may be correct. Atheists might be rational and honest, but they might be wrong. The lack of impartiality of most believers merely underlines the difficulty of dialogue with atheists.

Firstly Barker does something that I see a lot of posters here doing. They call someone’s belief a lie. Being wrong does not usually mean it’s a lie. To lie requires intentionality.
Secondly when he says that “many believers admitting even the possibility that they might be wrong”, I’d suggest that you could just as easily substitute atheists for believers in that sentence. I for one know that I could be wrong about God all together. I have a strong belief that there is a good and loving god and I have a strong belief that if I want to understand that god and try to understand what it should mean to my life I look to Jesus. However, it is belief and faith in that belief. It is not the same thing as scientific knowledge or even scientific theory.

TAP writes:

I will admit that I am impressed and perhaps more curious about Barker's book than I am about Zacharias and Vitale. Both sides make some great arguments and I am beginning to get a glimpse into jars whole recommendation to "throw God away". Not that I ever will.


I don’t recall jar saying that we should “throw God away” but although he is a Christian his beliefs, as near as I can tell, don’t differ from those of a secular humanist. Yes, you can simply look at the Bible and take away the social message of love of neighbour and that is really important. However, if God really did bodily resurrect Jesus, and give Him dominion, then it brings up other aspects besides the Golden Rule, such as responsibility not just to our neighbour, but to all life and to the planet itself. But, no matter how remote the possibility, I could be wrong.

Edited by GDR, : typo


He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 4 by Phat, posted 09-24-2019 6:43 PM Phat has not yet responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 10 by jar, posted 09-25-2019 12:23 PM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 9 of 94 (863373)
09-25-2019 11:59 AM
Reply to: Message 6 by ICANT
09-24-2019 11:13 PM


Re: Christian
ICANT writes:

GDR I don't know what your definition of a Christian is, maybe you could enlighten me.

I suppose if someone wants to sincerely call themselves a Christian then who am I to say they aren't. I doubt you'll find any two people that have actually spent time trying to understand their faith that won't disagree on something. Too many Christians IMHO want to tie the definition down to someone who believes in exactly the same doctrine that they do.

Also, belief in a specific doctrine is too closely aligned with the idea of what will happen to them in the next life.


He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 6 by ICANT, posted 09-24-2019 11:13 PM ICANT has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 17 by ICANT, posted 09-25-2019 10:47 PM GDR has not yet responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(4)
Message 12 of 94 (863411)
09-25-2019 5:12 PM
Reply to: Message 6 by ICANT
09-24-2019 11:13 PM


Re: Christian
ICANT writes:

I will be 80 years old Thursday at 4:30 pm. I became a child of God by being born again August 19, 1949.

IMHO that phrase "born again" is often badly misused. It seems to be so often used to relate to a specific time that someone gives ascent to some form of Christian doctrine. The term "born again" occurs in 2 books of the Bible. It is used in reply to Nicodemus in John 3 and again in ! Peter 1 where it agrees that they have been born again as their hearts have been changed to hearts that reflect God's love into the world. No where does it say that it is about accepting any particular doctrine.

Being born again is about having hearts that over a time gradually move further and further away from having a heart that looks out after number one, to having a heart that loves others sacrificially. It is about having a heart that responds to that still small voice of God regardless of religious belief.
At age 80 here's hoping you've been born again, and again, and again......


He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 6 by ICANT, posted 09-24-2019 11:13 PM ICANT has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 14 by Faith, posted 09-25-2019 5:56 PM GDR has responded
 Message 19 by ICANT, posted 09-26-2019 12:12 AM GDR has not yet responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 13 of 94 (863422)
09-25-2019 5:40 PM
Reply to: Message 10 by jar
09-25-2019 12:23 PM


Re: what jar has said.
jar writes:

Yup, not just say but very strongly believe we would be better if all mankind threw "God" away. Throw away the God(s) and god(s) that man creates; GOD is not the God of Genesis 1 or the God of Genesis 2&3 or the Sunni Allah or the Shiite Allah or Ganesha or Coyote or Raven or Shiva or Ra or any of the other Gods and gods that man has created.

We need to stop creating God in Man's image.

But I have outlined what my beliefs are several times here; most thoroughly in Belief Statement - jar.

Hi jar
I read through many of your posts on that thread but not all 66 of them.

The problem is that you post like a theist but then you say what you do in the quote above you are essentially expressing a deistic POV.

I agree that all religion is a man made attempt to understand why we are here, from a POV that we are the result of an intelligent agent. From there we attempt to understand the nature of that intelligence and what it should mean to our lives.

Before I would agree that we should throw away any particular deity I think we do have to ask what it is that we believe about that deity. If we believe that the deity is the one that we sometimes see in Bible that commits and commands genocide then I'm with you. If however we believe in a deity that commands us to be peace keepers, to be merciful, to love others as we love ourselves etc, then I have to question why would you want to throw that god away. Belief in a deity like that will at the very least give humans a foundational belief in how our lives should be lived that is positive.


He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 10 by jar, posted 09-25-2019 12:23 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 16 by jar, posted 09-25-2019 10:02 PM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 15 of 94 (863426)
09-25-2019 6:29 PM
Reply to: Message 14 by Faith
09-25-2019 5:56 PM


Re: Christian
Faith writes:

Being born again means having a changed perspective on ...just about everything. It's not just the acceptance of a new doctrine or a changed opinion, it's something internal that you know happened to you because you now see things so entirely differently than you did before.

I don't disagree with that but it isn't something that is confined to a specific time or place. It is a response that gradually begins to respond to that still small voice that calls us to do the loving thing even though there is personal cost to it. Ideally over time the response continues to grow until it becomes normal to us. Certainly none of us, least of all me as Paul would say, that do this anywhere near perfectly. Mind you, there are those who devote their whole lives to serving others. Sadly I'm not in that category.

However it isn't something that you can pin down to a particular time and place, and it doesn't require the acceptance of a new doctrine at all.


He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 14 by Faith, posted 09-25-2019 5:56 PM Faith has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 21 by ICANT, posted 09-26-2019 12:25 AM GDR has responded
 Message 22 by Faith, posted 09-26-2019 1:11 AM GDR has not yet responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 20 of 94 (863442)
09-26-2019 12:19 AM
Reply to: Message 16 by jar
09-25-2019 10:02 PM


Re: what jar has said.
GDR writes:

The problem is that you post like a theist but then you say what you do in the quote above you are essentially expressing a deistic POV.

jar writes:

I don't think so; what I am saying is that so far no one has ever presented anyway to actually identify or test to show something is supernatural. I believe GOD exists but understand that is simply a belief with no supporting evidence. Nor do I see anyway anyone alive could ever even produce such evidence.

Here are a couple of thoughts on that. Essentially you are saying that you believe that God exists but that the god that you believe in isn't involved in the world that we live in. That is deism.

As far as evidence goes there is evidence all around us. Our whole body is made up of mindless particles and yet we have consciousness. We can appreciate beauty. We have a sense of morality. We are able to love, even sacrificially. That is evidence of something, and yes we can only come to subjective conclusions that form our beliefs, but it is evidence.

If we feel led to go to the aid of a homeless individual is that because we have listened to that still small voice? if it is, then is that supernatural? Does that still small voice even exist or has it simply evolved out of mindlessness?

GDR writes:

I agree that all religion is a man made attempt to understand why we are here, from a POV that we are the result of an intelligent agent. From there we attempt to understand the nature of that intelligence and what it should mean to our lives.

jar writes:

Yeah, I believe you do believe that but I really can't see any point or relevance or reason for such an effort or process.

Well there have been countless philosophers and theologians who have spent their lives trying to answer that question. They certainly saw relevance and reason in trying to answer that question.

If we are the result of a deity then it seems reasonable to at least suspect that we are here with some kind of purpose. It seems reasonable and relevant to me to attempt to discern that purpose and react to it.

jar writes:

Why not just give humans a foundational belief to be peace keepers, to be merciful, to love others as we love ourselves etc?

If we can't reject it we can't choose it.

jar writes:

I believe GOD exists but have absolutely no reason to think GOD will be like anything I can imagine.

As a Christian don't you think that you can look at Jesus to give you an understanding of God?

jar writes:

I believe that the basics of Jesus message, his teachings are a valid guideline for living ones life.

Why believe that over a belief in anyone else?

jar writes:

I believe that what I believe is also totally irrelevant to anyone except me.

It seems to me that somewhere you said you taught sunday school. You must have believed that your beliefs were relevant to the kids in your class.

jar writes:

But I am a Christian.

I'm not questioning that, but I again ask what as a Christian do you believe that a secular humanist couldn't also believe in?

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 16 by jar, posted 09-25-2019 10:02 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 24 by jar, posted 09-26-2019 7:47 AM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 23 of 94 (863452)
09-26-2019 2:50 AM
Reply to: Message 21 by ICANT
09-26-2019 12:25 AM


Re: Christian
ICANT writes:

You are not describing someone being born again.

You are describing a person that decides to serve the Lord and sets out on a journey of doing good deeds in order to gain favor with God. Then after that journey has lasted a long time the person has convinced himself/herself that they have arrived and deserve to be in heaven and is now saved.

Not at all. That is one of the problems with your type of fundamentalism. You think the whole point of the thing is to get to heaven. In the first place the idea of heading off to some place called heaven is not from the Bible. It is Greek mythology and primarily from Plato. The Bible actually talks about the recreation of all things. The Kingdom of Heaven in Matthew or the Kingdom of God in the other Gospels is about having an earthly kingdom without geographic boundaries that is made up of those who respond to that small voice of God and work to spread God's love and care into His creation.

Secondly when you make the point of Christianity to get a reward in the next life you are preaching a message that is 180 degrees from what Jesus taught. It takes the message Jesus' message of serving others into a message of loving the self.

The point about being born again is that it is about having a heart that learns to love sacrificially, not because there is a benefit from doing so in either this life or the next, but simply because you love that which is good and follow through with that love. Read the Bible and start with the sermon on the mount or Matthew 25. The whole point about being saved is not just to get a benefit in the next life, but it is about being saved so that we can serve God by being good stewards of His creation.

ICANT writes:

That is getting the cart before the horse. You have to be born again before you can do one good deed that God even sees.

That is so completely unscriptural. Again, read the Bible for what it actually says. In this case start with the "Good Samaritan", or again the sheep and the goats. There is nothing in there about what doctrine they accepted but simply about where there hearts were.

ICANT writes:

If a person does not choose to be born again they will spend eternity in the lake of fire.

This again is more about Greek mythology than anything else. Your type of faith turns doctrinal belief into the idea of salvation by works. It represents a modern form of phariseeism.

Remember Jesus said that all of the commandments hang on the love of God and neighbour and Paul tells us that ultimately they amount to the same thing. You might also read my signature.


He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 21 by ICANT, posted 09-26-2019 12:25 AM ICANT has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 33 by ICANT, posted 09-27-2019 1:45 AM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 48 of 94 (863688)
09-28-2019 6:50 PM
Reply to: Message 24 by jar
09-26-2019 7:47 AM


The God Meme
GDR writes:

If we feel led to go to the aid of a homeless individual is that because we have listened to that still small voice? if it is, then is that supernatural? Does that still small voice even exist or has it simply evolved out of mindlessness?

jar writes:

No one knows. The best evidence is that it is a simple product of being alive. There is no evidence of anything supernatural there.

I agree no one knows. It could be either one. However, if it is the God meme reaching into our lives then I’d suggest that is supernatural. Would you consider a God meme to be supernatural?

GDR writes:

As a Christian don't you think that you can look at Jesus to give you an understanding of God?

jar writes:

Absolutely not. The story of Jesus can give us an understanding of what it means to be a human.

I’d say that it is both. I go along with what John 1 says when he says the Word became flesh. (As an aside John says that the Word became flesh and not a book.) If we want to understand God’s nature we look to the life and teaching of Jesus.

GDR writes:

I'm not questioning that, but I again ask what as a Christian do you believe that a secular humanist couldn't also believe in?

jar writes:

I believe there is a GOD and that there is life after death and I will be judged based on how I have lived my life.

Fair enough. You are correct and that does go beyond secular humanism but that is not contradictory to deism. I would add a caveat to your judgment statement. There is that verse in the Gospels where Jesus says “to whom much is given much is expected”. I do believe in God’s perfect judgment and that for someone like myself who grew up in a loving affirming environment will not be judged on the same basis as someone who grew in an abusive home.

I’d also add that I think judgment is based where our hearts are. I’d suggest that how we live our lives is a by-product of whether we love sacrificially or selfishly. I’m very much in line with Lewis in both “The Great Divorce” as well as “The Last Battle”.
Cheers


He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 24 by jar, posted 09-26-2019 7:47 AM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 49 by jar, posted 09-28-2019 7:11 PM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 50 of 94 (863691)
09-28-2019 7:35 PM
Reply to: Message 33 by ICANT
09-27-2019 1:45 AM


Re: Christian
ICANT writes:

There is going to be an earthly kingdom on earth with Jesus ruling the earth from Jerusalem. The judgment of the nations jar likes to refer too of sheep and goat nations will be the choosing of the sheep nations to inhabit the earth during a 1000 year reign of Christ on earth with His Bride ruling with Him. The Apostles will set on thrones with Him ruling over the Jewish people. During this time the devil will have been chained in the bottomless pit after he is cast out of heaven and fights a war with Michael the archangel and is defeated.

So get your theology straight.

The way you read the Bible is no different than understanding when someone today says that it was raining cats and dogs, and understand it as saying that our pets had come hurtling out of the sky. The Bible is not to be read like a newspaper. However, I realize that you have had a long life time preaching that doctrine and it isn't about to change now.

GDR writes:

The point about being born again is that it is about having a heart that learns to love sacrificially,

ICANT writes:

The only function the heart has is to pump blood through a system that provides energy, oxygen, and removes the waste from the cells.

That response is just bizarre. How about these quotes form Jesus in Matthew 6 and this sort of thing is throughout the whole Bible.
Jesus writes:

8 Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God... and again..21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

ICANT writes:

Your mind is the only thing that makes decisions. That is the battleground where the warfare takes place. The body still wants to do all the old things. The spirit wants you to do new things. Thus the body and spirit is at war. Your mind is like a computer you put garbage in you will get garbage out. You have to get rules to live by from somewhere. God gives us those rules. But most people want to make up their own rules. Therein lies the problem.


How about we read Paul in Romans 2
quote:
13 For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, but it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous. 14 (Indeed, when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law, they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15 They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them.) 16 This will take place on the day when God judges people’s secrets through Jesus Christ, as my gospel declares.
Did you ever read the part about the law being written on their hearts or did you just bypass that as it didn't fit with what you wanted to believe? It is all about the heart and not about rules.

ICANT writes:

So you are saying Jesus was teaching Greek mythology when He told Nicodemus he had to be born again to see the kingdom of heaven.

No, I simply disagree with what you think it means to be born again.

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 33 by ICANT, posted 09-27-2019 1:45 AM ICANT has not yet responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 51 of 94 (863692)
09-28-2019 7:41 PM
Reply to: Message 49 by jar
09-28-2019 7:11 PM


Re: The God Meme
jar writes:

I would consider that Word Salad with no meaning or content.

I would consider that a cop-out.
jar writes:

Again, not at all sure what that even means or what looking to the life and teaching of Jesus tells us about God's nature.

I'll try rephrasing it. Do you consider the God that you say you believe in to have any particular morality, and does God have empathy with people. I'm suggesting that as Christians we should be able to look at the morality and empathy of Jesus for the answer to the question.

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 49 by jar, posted 09-28-2019 7:11 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 52 by jar, posted 09-28-2019 7:55 PM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 53 of 94 (863694)
09-28-2019 7:59 PM
Reply to: Message 52 by jar
09-28-2019 7:55 PM


Re: The God Meme
jar writes:

I agree we can look at Jesus teaching and see morality and empathy but I not sure how that would tell us anything about GOD. It's clear that quite a few of the descriptions of God in the Bible describe either an immoral God or an amoral one.

Do you believe that there is anything special about Jesus, other than that He was a good man?

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 52 by jar, posted 09-28-2019 7:55 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 54 by jar, posted 09-28-2019 8:23 PM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 55 of 94 (863741)
09-29-2019 6:19 PM
Reply to: Message 54 by jar
09-28-2019 8:23 PM


Re: The God Meme
jar writes:

Again, I strongly believe that whatever I believe is totally irrelevant.

What we believe is absolutely relevant. Our beliefs and our non-beliefs form the basis of the people we are. They mold our relationships and they also have an impact and influence others, and particularly those close to us like our children.

jar writes:

But personally I need to answer in terms of Jesus while alive and living on earth, a period of about 30 years. At that time I believe Jesus was totally human, not GOD, not divine, not supernatural.

I agree with that. The only thing I would add is that. I would also agree that it is scriptural. For example here is a verse from Luke 2:
quote:
52 And Jesus grew in wisdom and stature, and in favor with God and man.
I think that is the clearest statement of His humanity.

The only thing that I would add is that I believe that by the time Jesus started His ministry at roughly age 30, that through His knowledge of the Hebrew Scriptures and through prayer and with an infilling of God's spirit He was able to perfectly image God's nature and love into the world.

jar writes:

Before then and after his ascension is entirely different. Between his death, resurrection and before ascension I honestly have no idea. The stories are as is so often the case contradictory and very unreliable.

Yes, there are contradictions in the Gospel accounts, particularly when it comes to time and location. However, IMHO those differences actually lend credibility. If they all lined up perfectly it would smack of collusion . I just can't see a case to be made for their fabrication. They no doubt are told with the compilers personal thoughts and emphasis, and they no doubt did get certain things wrong, however they are all consistent on the fact that Jesus was physically resurrected. They certainly believed that the accounts were historical. They may have been mistaken, or gotten it all wrong.

I have read a number of debates about whether the Gospel accounts of the resurrection are historical or not. I have read a number of theories of what might have happened but the basis for all of the arguments against Jesus' resurrection is based on the idea that it is scientifically impossible. However, if one is a theist, it only seems reasonable to me that we can accept that the resurrection would be small potatoes for a God who brought life into existence.

Frankly, without the resurrection Jesus would have been considered nothing more than another failed messiah and nobody would have remembered Him more that 40 years later let alone 2000 years later. If there is no resurrection I cannot see any explanation for the rise of the Jewish sect that became Christianity.

jar writes:

There is the tales of him simply appearing to people but also the Thomas story where it is implied he was very much corporeal.

The Gospel accounts see Jesus as corporeal. The Gospel accounts however, indicate that it is a new form of bodily existence that seems able to exist in either Gods' heavenly dimension or our earthly one. Thomas is a very early form of Gnosticism where God's heaven does not co-exist with our Earthly existence, and where this Earth is evil and certainly not ultimately going to be renewed.

jar writes:

Again though, I am very sure that if there is life after death I will learn that everything I believed was simply nonsense.

I think that the best we can do to grasp the next life is to look at the ultimate resurrection of all things with Jesus being the first example we have of our resurrected bodies. After that I simply go on the faith that it will be a world of perfect justice, mercy, kindness and love, whatever that will look like.

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 54 by jar, posted 09-28-2019 8:23 PM jar has acknowledged this reply

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 63 of 94 (863900)
10-02-2019 7:08 PM
Reply to: Message 60 by jar
09-30-2019 9:38 PM


Re: what jar has said.
jar writes:

Well Phat, first Islam like Judaism says there there is no such thing as the Trinity; the Trinity is solely a Christian marketed product and only Trinitarian Christianity at that.

On one level I agree with you but I don't think it is that simple. Yes, the Trinity was a way that the relatively early Christians came up with in an effort to understand how the godhead fit together. In many ways I just don't see it being that difficult. It all starts with the "Father' who is the creator of life. The Spirit is the God's voice in all of us that we can either choose to listen to or ignore. Jesus is the Son of Man,who, however it was done, gave His human life wholly over to God's spirit and then was made Lord and given dominion over the Kingdom as in Daniel 7.

jar writes:

But the issue is that the God character in the Bible is quite often an immoral or at best amoral critter.

To claim Jesus is God needs qualifiers such as Jesus is God but not the God of Genesis 1 or the God of Genesis 2&3 or the God of the Exodus saga or ... (the list goes on).

I just don't see it as there being different gods in the Bible. It is all the same god but with different human understandings and expectations of God. If we use God as embodied by Jesus as the lens we can then read through the 66 different books that make up the Bible and understand where the writers got it wrong and where they got it more or less right. The whole Biblical narrative provides the story of a progressive understanding of the nature of God climaxing in Jesus.

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 60 by jar, posted 09-30-2019 9:38 PM jar has acknowledged this reply

Replies to this message:
 Message 64 by Phat, posted 10-03-2019 2:34 PM GDR has not yet responded
 Message 67 by Faith, posted 10-04-2019 12:00 PM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5075
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 66 of 94 (863971)
10-04-2019 11:42 AM
Reply to: Message 65 by jar
10-03-2019 3:59 PM


Re: what jar has said.
GDR writes:

"If we use God as embodied by Jesus as the lens we can then read through the 66 different books that make up the Bible and understand where the writers got it wrong and where they got it more or less right.

jar writes:

That just means we can pick those things we agree with and create both Jesus and God in our own image.

From your POV that makes sense as, from what you have said before, you don't believe that God resurrected Jesus. The resurrection is absolute central to the establishment of the Christian church. Without it is a blend of deism and secular humanism and following Jesus is really no different than following Gandhi.

Yes you believe in life after death and that there is ultimately judgement but that is hardly the exclusive domain of Christianity. If however God did resurrect Jesus , then what I said makes complete sense.

jar writes:

But in the end I believe we will be judged based on our behavior.

Will my behaviour be judged on the same basis as someone who grew up being physically and mentally abused?

He has told you, O man, what is good ; And what does the LORD require of you But to do justice, to love kindness, And to walk humbly with your God.

Micah 6:8


This message is a reply to:
 Message 65 by jar, posted 10-03-2019 3:59 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 68 by jar, posted 10-04-2019 3:56 PM GDR has responded

  
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