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Author Topic:   Testing The Christian Apologists
ringo
Member
Posts: 18504
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 1.6


Message 781 of 853 (872442)
02-27-2020 11:13 AM
Reply to: Message 777 by Phat
02-27-2020 11:05 AM


Re: Answering A Humanist Charge And earning Nothing.
Phat writes:

Heaven is not a democracy. Otherwise, we would be forced to let satan hang out there also.


There is no Satan. If there was, your god would not be omnipotent.

Phat writes:

IIRC, there was a war and he got evicted.


The story that you recall is from the book that you reject.

"I'm Fallen and I can't get up!"

This message is a reply to:
 Message 777 by Phat, posted 02-27-2020 11:05 AM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
jar
Member
Posts: 32723
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 782 of 853 (872443)
02-27-2020 11:15 AM
Reply to: Message 780 by Phat
02-27-2020 11:12 AM


Re: Answering A Humanist Charge And earning Nothing.
Phat writes:

Could it be because they threw God away and claimed their own works as the necessary credentials?

That's not what the story says.


My Sister's Website: Rose Hill Studios     My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
 Message 780 by Phat, posted 02-27-2020 11:12 AM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 18504
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 1.6


Message 783 of 853 (872444)
02-27-2020 11:17 AM
Reply to: Message 778 by Phat
02-27-2020 11:09 AM


Re: Dr.Turek weighs in on Protestant and Catholic differences.
Phat writes:

If by that you mean that He doesn't create your decisions, then yes, I agree.


Our decisions are in the universe - so your god did not crerate everything in the universe. That's the logic. Pretty simple.

Phat writes:

He created the possibility of evil. Humans still choose whether or not to actualize it.


That's not how it works in our justice system. If you plant landmines in your front yard, you're responsible for the consequences.

"I'm Fallen and I can't get up!"

This message is a reply to:
 Message 778 by Phat, posted 02-27-2020 11:09 AM Phat has acknowledged this reply

  
Faith 
Suspended Member (Idle past 25 days)
Posts: 35298
From: Nevada, USA
Joined: 10-06-2001


Message 784 of 853 (872445)
02-27-2020 12:04 PM
Reply to: Message 766 by Hyroglyphx
02-27-2020 9:47 AM


Re: Dr.Turek weighs in on Protestant and Catholic differences.
Again I just don't know what you are talking about, and I said nothing that you seem to be imputing to me so I have no idea how to answer you. Seems you can qauote me verbatim as you said and still get what I meant completely wrong. I don't even know where to start.

Edited by Faith, : No reason given.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 766 by Hyroglyphx, posted 02-27-2020 9:47 AM Hyroglyphx has not yet responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5409
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


(1)
Message 785 of 853 (872448)
02-27-2020 1:37 PM
Reply to: Message 764 by Tangle
02-27-2020 3:08 AM


Re: Dr.Turek weighs in on Protestant and Catholic differences.
GDR writes:

Love of others sums up ALL the law and the prophets.

tangle writes:

Oh, I wish that was true.

Well, the Bible quotes Jesus as having said that.
Tangle writes:

If that was all that was actually what your religion is about, there would be no need for the religion at all; no need for worship need for preaching about everlasting damnation for the sins of the father, no baptisms, no bells and smells, no knocking on doors and martyrs, no eucharist, no holy armies, no hours wasted in prayer, no bible study groups, no indoctrination of children with fairy stories about everlasting life at the hand of god, and so on. All that would be necessary would be to say 'be nice'. Why mention Jesus at all?


Because it is much more than being nice. The thing that separates Christianity from other beliefs is the claim that God resurrected Jesus. If that isn’t true then I agree with Paul when he writes that we are to be pitied. However Christianity at its most basic is based on that and everything else flows from it.

It is interesting in that in the Old Testament we can see that the generations kept adding laws and allowing cultural changes into their belief system. Christianity has done the same thing. Christianity for its first 300 years was pretty consistent about what it meant to be Christian.

I recently gave a talk that I had prepared in our church and I’m going to use parts of that to make my point.

I mentioned on another thread that I had recently read a book by Alan Kreider called The Patient Ferment – The Improbable Rise of the Christian Church in the Roman EmpireHere is a quote from that book.

quote:
Candidates for baptism came from differing backgrounds – Jewish and pagan, Greek and Roman. They also were of both sexes and a range of social classes. Most were poor and some were slaves, but a few were comfortably well-off. Some of the candidates were illiterate. Somehow the church’s teaching was meant to reach all of these, for all were important in the Christian church. The teachers conveyed to the candidates that, although they valued education, refined learning was not the point; the instruction was not designed to produce sophisticated thought but “character” and “virtuous living”.
The church’s growth was the product, not of the Christians’ persuasive powers, but of their convincing life style.

The early Christians stood out in contrast to their violent, self-serving culture, for the way that they loved each other, their neighbours and even their enemies. The focus was on virtuous living but people were only baptized after they had demonstrated that they had adopted that life style before being given instruction on Christian doctrine. That is what Christianity was from the apostolic time until Constantine with the Milan edict in 313 AD when Christianity was legalized and then in 380 AD Christianity became the state religion for the Roman Empire.

All of this was good for the existing Christians but it was a terrible thing for Christianity in general. Christians were no longer being persecuted as they had been but it was disastrous for what it did to how Christianity was lived and understood.

As I see it there were 5 basic things that were very negative for the church.

1/ This moved the church away from the non-aggression stance taken by Jesus, and impacted the thinking of the church right through the middle ages and is still an influence today.

2/ Another change that came as a result of this was that, whereas the early Christian Church had been largely egalitarian, (even though it had Bishops), it now gave undue influence to political leaders, and in this case Roman political leaders. The gulf between what was secular and what was Christian had to a large degree been crossed. The message, mission and life of the church has always suffered whenever the church has become a route to political power.

3/ It also moved the centre of a large segment of Christianity away from Jerusalem to Rome which gave a strong start to separating Christianity and Jesus from their Jewish roots. Up to this time Christianity had been rooted in the Jewishness of Jesus and the Jewish understanding of the life, death and message of Jesus. This allowed for a Latin input into Christian doctrine but to a much greater extent Christianity, took on board a great deal of Greek philosophy and particularly the philosophy of Plato.

4/ In the book I mentioned earlier called “The Patient Ferment” it is clear that one of the major characteristics of the first three centuries of Christianity was “patience”. These early Christians were not focused on growing the church but to patiently let it grow driven by the example of their life style of sexual fidelity, love and courage. After Constantine it became more about growing the church, largely as a cultural and political entity.

5/ Church law and church practices were now being either set or heavily influenced by leaders, political and/or Christian, who had personal agendas.
Point 3 was really crucial on the formation of Christian doctrine and took it way off track. Virtually all of the New Testament was written in Greek. Greek thinking had a massive influence on Christian belief. Essentially Plato taught that all matter is evil and that only the spiritual is good. He taught that the soul is eternal but matter is temporal. In other words this material world is an evil place that will ultimately be done away with and only the soul will remain in one state or another.

Other Greek thinking crept into the Christian church. For example, the gods of the Greek pantheon were angry gods and needed appeasing. As a result we still hear to this day the idea that God’s anger needed to be appeased and this was achieved through the cross. Instead of John 3:16 saying that He loves the world and gave us the Son, it is as if it read that God so hated the world that He killed the Son.

So Greek ideas became embedded in Christian theology, but the Latin or Roman influence was felt more in the church itself. As Rome became the leading center of Christianity, the church fairly quickly adopted the top down form of governance that the Roman Empire itself employed. This resulted in the Pope of Rome gaining more and more political power over the following few centuries until the lines are completely blurred between the emperor and pope with some popes holding the title of emperor. The papacy became more about political power and the accumulation of wealth, than about Christian doctrine or Christian service. Any doctrinal issues were solved by political and financial motivation. Military might was used to put down opposition, to spread the Christian church, and increase the influence of the pope. Leadership in the church was about acquiring wealth and power and its mission and practice was far removed from the mission and practice of Jesus - the lower class Jew who washed the feet of His disciples.

You might find the church a bit different now that what you experienced before. Over the last 50 years or so there has been a lot of scholarship that has gone into studying Jesus in his historical context and the church in general is shedding the Greek and Latin influences in Christian thinking, and it is slowly moving back to the model of the early church.

So to your question of why bother with it all all and just be nice.

Firstly as a Christian I believe that the Bible is a book that God’ spirit uses a a tool to reach out to us. It is my belief that God touches human hearts and the Bible is one way that He does that.

Secondly I can serve God and His creation collectively better than I can as an individual. As I’ve said elsewhere our church and in concert with other churches of different denominations locally have sponsored numerous Syrian refugees and then helped them settle in Canada, I can’t do that as an individual.

Thirdly, if I believe as I do that God resurrected Jesus then I have to consider what that means. It means that I can get a sense of God’s purpose for life. It also does show that life exists beyond the life that we know. It gets away from the Platonic thinking that this world is evil and will eventually be eliminated with only some kind of soulful existence remaining. It shows that this world matters and that we have to care for it. It also shows that ultimately there is purpose to our lives beyond this life.

As a Christian community we can learn about the needs within our church community and the broader community so that we can in concert help those who need help.

I do agree to a point with Faith that being born again is part of the point. I simply knew that when I first accepted the faith that the way I viewed others changed. I spoke differently about others and was more accepting of what I saw as shortfalls in others.

In my view the Christian vocation is to be reflectors of God’s love into all of His creation and Christianity grounds me in that. I also believe that it has opened up in a deeper way to that God meme that is in all of us.


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 764 by Tangle, posted 02-27-2020 3:08 AM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 786 by Tangle, posted 02-27-2020 2:04 PM GDR has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 7805
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 786 of 853 (872450)
02-27-2020 2:04 PM
Reply to: Message 785 by GDR
02-27-2020 1:37 PM


Re: Dr.Turek weighs in on Protestant and Catholic differences.
GDR writes:

Well, the Bible quotes Jesus as having said that.


(Love of others sums up ALL the law and the prophets.)

So there's no need for anything else is there?


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 785 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 1:37 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 787 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 2:42 PM Tangle has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5409
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 787 of 853 (872451)
02-27-2020 2:42 PM
Reply to: Message 786 by Tangle
02-27-2020 2:04 PM


The point of Christianity
Tangle writes:

(Love of others sums up ALL the law and the prophets.)
So there's no need for anything else is there?

If the whole point is to be on the right side of the equation at the end of this life then I'd say you're partly right, but if that is the point of it all then, the motivation can easily be selfish and the question is then is it really love.

Actually I think I went through quite a bit of why there is something else in my last post. Christianity does give a rationale for why love matters. In the atheistic world of mindless causes love is a pretty nebulous concept.


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 786 by Tangle, posted 02-27-2020 2:04 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 788 by ringo, posted 02-27-2020 3:57 PM GDR has responded
 Message 793 by Tangle, posted 02-27-2020 5:37 PM GDR has responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 18504
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 1.6


(1)
Message 788 of 853 (872453)
02-27-2020 3:57 PM
Reply to: Message 787 by GDR
02-27-2020 2:42 PM


Re: The point of Christianity
GDR writes:

... the question is then is it really love.


I think I smell a No True Scotsman fallacy.

GDR writes:

In the atheistic world of mindless causes love is a pretty nebulous concept.


Not really. It's just part of being a social species. What we do for others is love.

"I'm Fallen and I can't get up!"

This message is a reply to:
 Message 787 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 2:42 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 789 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 5:14 PM ringo has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5409
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 789 of 853 (872456)
02-27-2020 5:14 PM
Reply to: Message 788 by ringo
02-27-2020 3:57 PM


Re: The point of Christianity
ringo writes:

I think I smell a No True Scotsman fallacy.

Not really. I'm simply asking the question of whether if something as done as a "loving" act when the motive is to gain a benefit for the self. From a human perspective we can't tell whether it is done from a position of love or not.

ringo writes:

Not really. It's just part of being a social species. What we do for others is love.

If we have a mindless root then love is only what seems to work in some circumstances and is self serving.

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 788 by ringo, posted 02-27-2020 3:57 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 790 by jar, posted 02-27-2020 5:21 PM GDR has responded
 Message 791 by ringo, posted 02-27-2020 5:27 PM GDR has responded

  
jar
Member
Posts: 32723
From: Texas!!
Joined: 04-20-2004
Member Rating: 1.7


Message 790 of 853 (872459)
02-27-2020 5:21 PM
Reply to: Message 789 by GDR
02-27-2020 5:14 PM


Re: The point of Christianity
GDR writes:

mindless root

What does that even mean?


My Sister's Website: Rose Hill Studios     My Website: My Website

This message is a reply to:
 Message 789 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 5:14 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 792 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 5:28 PM jar has responded

  
ringo
Member
Posts: 18504
From: frozen wasteland
Joined: 03-23-2005
Member Rating: 1.6


Message 791 of 853 (872460)
02-27-2020 5:27 PM
Reply to: Message 789 by GDR
02-27-2020 5:14 PM


Re: The point of Christianity
GDR writes:

If we have a mindless root then love is only what seems to work in some circumstances and is self serving.


Not "self-serving". Just serving.

"I'm Fallen and I can't get up!"

This message is a reply to:
 Message 789 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 5:14 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 794 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 5:37 PM ringo has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5409
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 792 of 853 (872461)
02-27-2020 5:28 PM
Reply to: Message 790 by jar
02-27-2020 5:21 PM


Re: The point of Christianity
jar writes:

What does that even mean?

Simply that there is no external intelligence responsible for our existence, or put the other way around, that we are simply the result of a chance combination of particles and processes.

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 790 by jar, posted 02-27-2020 5:21 PM jar has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 796 by jar, posted 02-27-2020 5:56 PM GDR has responded

  
Tangle
Member
Posts: 7805
From: UK
Joined: 10-07-2011
Member Rating: 2.8


Message 793 of 853 (872462)
02-27-2020 5:37 PM
Reply to: Message 787 by GDR
02-27-2020 2:42 PM


Re: The point of Christianity
GDR writes:

If the whole point is to be on the right side of the equation at the end of this life then I'd say you're partly right, but if that is the point of it all then, the motivation can easily be selfish and the question is then is it really love.

In other words your god is saying 'love each other or else' whilst making all life compete so as to ensure that it is impossible to do so. Nasty little guy your god.

Christianity does give a rationale for why love matters. In the atheistic world of mindless causes love is a pretty nebulous concept.

Utter crap, I have a very clear view of why love matters. Where do you get this bullshit from?


Je suis Charlie. Je suis Ahmed. Je suis Juif. Je suis Parisien. I am Mancunian. I am Brum. I am London.I am Finland. Soy Barcelona

"Life, don't talk to me about life" - Marvin the Paranoid Android

"Science adjusts it's views based on what's observed.
Faith is the denial of observation so that Belief can be preserved."
- Tim Minchin, in his beat poem, Storm.


This message is a reply to:
 Message 787 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 2:42 PM GDR has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 795 by GDR, posted 02-27-2020 5:48 PM Tangle has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5409
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 794 of 853 (872463)
02-27-2020 5:37 PM
Reply to: Message 791 by ringo
02-27-2020 5:27 PM


Re: The point of Christianity
ringo writes:

Not "self-serving". Just serving.

We have been down this path before, (which hardly ever happens in this forum ) but if service is only performed when there is going to be a benefit to the individual or the culture of the one doing the serving, then our world would be a much darker place than it already is.

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 791 by ringo, posted 02-27-2020 5:27 PM ringo has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 813 by ringo, posted 02-28-2020 10:39 AM GDR has responded

  
GDR
Member
Posts: 5409
From: Sidney, BC, Canada
Joined: 05-22-2005
Member Rating: 2.2


Message 795 of 853 (872464)
02-27-2020 5:48 PM
Reply to: Message 793 by Tangle
02-27-2020 5:37 PM


Re: The point of Christianity
Tangle writes:

In other words your god is saying 'love each other or else' whilst making all life compete so as to ensure that it is impossible to do so. Nasty little guy your god.

Not at all. It is hardly a competition. It is simply about responding positively to that God meme in all of us with the hope that we will be motivated to whatever degree that we are able to be prepared to love others sacrificially. You keep wanting to turn it into a heaven or hell thing. It is about God wanting this world to be a better place for everyone.

Tangle writes:

Utter crap, I have a very clear view of why love matters. Where do you get this bullshit from?

Once again, if we are only the result of a chance combination of particles and processes then how do we know that there is right and wrong, good an evil, or love and hate.

I don't doubt that you know why love matters, but I would contend that you can only know that because there is an intelligence responsible for us being able to love. I have a hunch that you'll disagree.


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 793 by Tangle, posted 02-27-2020 5:37 PM Tangle has responded

Replies to this message:
 Message 802 by Hyroglyphx, posted 02-27-2020 6:37 PM GDR has responded
 Message 809 by Tangle, posted 02-28-2020 3:39 AM GDR has responded

  
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