I think my biggest problem with salvation by works is the atrocities it allows for.
I think my biggest problem with salvation is the atrocities it allows for.
Fundamentally, it is the disassociation of morality from people's perception. Instead of judging the morality of an action based on how it affects people, it is judged on the basis of what an entity of dubious existence may or may not have claimed inside someone's head.
For instance, suppose Abraham had ended up sacrificing his son. The people of Moriah, instead of judging Abraham for killing his son, would be in the position of either trusting that God told him to do it, or not. They cannot prove it one way or another, so either they punish a believer for following God's will or give every murderer and criminal a free ticket to do whatever they want.
That is why I don't like the concept of spiritual salvation; it is an attempt to subvert moral repercussions on a basic level, and its acceptance makes you less moral.
You say you don't like the concept of spiritual salvation. Wouldn't you like to be saved from the consequences of all the wrongdoing you've done that has never been and never will be punished in an earthly setting? Perhaps you take comfort in the belief that the grave will cause that debt to be written off for good? That that wrongdoing will get off scot-free?
I don't confuse selfish desire with the ability to alter reality. You offer the concept as though your, my, or anyone's preference for it has some bearing on it being true. Perhaps you think if we agree that we want it enough it will actually come to be.
Isn't this a little hypocritical: to diss a system in which all wrongdoing will be punished in favor of a system where your wrongdoing simply evaporates into the air?
Isn't it a little bit insane to advocate a system based on your hopes and preferences rather than fact? Claiming that your god will judge people in some afterlife is, like most other aspects of religion, a faith-based claim.
What do you think carries more of a discouragement against murder, the penalty of hanging from the neck until dead, or the threat that "my unicorn will bite you *so* hard at some later date"?
Or they can ask God for some sign in the matter. If God gives no sign...
Sweet, how about we just do that to solve the debate? Put all your religious behaviors on hold until God gives you a sign. Or would that be testing God, something you are not supposed to do?
Seems like we are back to our god-given imagination; oh wait, you prefer "conscience" because that sounds better than claiming your personal feelings are backed by cosmic power.
You're aware of the three fingers pointing back at your own belief system: the system that supposes all your wrongdoing to rot in the grave with you.
How is that an argument against it? Are you proposing that just because you don't like the idea, that it cannot be true?
I'd merely note that I am as subject to the law of the land as you are and have at least as much to discourage me from murdering as you have.
Except you proposed that the people of Moriah could offload the responsibility of making moral judgments on a deity. You are only subject to the law of the land because you don't have your way.
You can't really examine the mechanics of how a system works whilst at the same time jumping up and down about the system not being true.
Why not? That is a good summary of the essence of abstract thought, an important aspect of sentient beings. Is the root of our differences your lack of the capacity for abstraction?
You need to clarify in your mind which conversation you're trying to have. The former of the two options above requires that you believe-for-the-sake-of-discussion. The latter of the two options above demands proof - in which case I'd steer you to those who suppose to be able to provide same.
I don't expect you to be able to provide proof for the latter option, my point was for you to acknowledge the fact that you could not. Once you did that you would have to face the concept that your proposed system of moral judgment depends on something indistinguishable from personal preference and imagination.