Atheist says hello – no flaming please

Hello folks.

I am an atheist. I’ve joined here simply to try to learn a little more about christians, what you think, why you think it and how you think it.

I am not here to flame or abuse you, and I hope you will find the same. I AM here to ask you questions. I think this is the case for many, however my questions are not intended to consolidate or nurture my faith – I have none, my questions will be specific, quizzing specific parts or events of the bible, and what they mean for you.

ipso facto, you are of course, free to ask me any questions you wish too.

Most of all, my questions will probably be focused from a perspective often referred to as a “naturalist” view – i.e. one that attempts to assess the case without invoking a deity. My tools are statistics, logic and reason.. and of course, my own, admittedly very flawed, and very incomplete understanding of the world.

The only favour I would ask is that, as long as you consider my question to be polite, you give my them fair consideration. As an extension, if you do not consider my question to be polite, then it’s possible I’ve inadvertantly said something I didn’t mean, or the tone of my text has not been conveyed accurately – so PLEASE TELL ME.

Oh, and a little request – you are free to pray for me if you wish, but I’d rather not hear about it, and indeed, I consider it quite insulting, since it indicates you don’t respect my freely-made choices. You might consider them wrong, but that’s actually irrelevant. They are mine. I made them, and I used my mind (perhaps given to me by god) to make them.

What do YOU think?

comments

Comments

  1. alethesia dipsos says:

    It seems you have some good discussions going – I would be happy to give the intellectual and evidence based reasons I first took serious notice of “Christianity” but what I really wanted to say is that I applaud your mature and respectful (and quite intelligent) approach to discussing sensitive topics that often cause tempers to flare. I respect that very much and thank you for it! Good luck with your ventures here and I truly hope you feel welcome here!
    Neil

    • Please do share here the reasons you came to faith in Christ. You never know who it is going to help!

    • anonymous-em says:

      Hello Neil, thanks for your note.

      well I acknowledge that I’m a guest here – and a bit of a fish out of water, so as long as I want to receive responses from people, it’s best to be polite!. I have to say that with only very few exceptions, people seem quite willing to discuss my rather pointed questions. I’m very happy that this seems to be the case.

      As Michael said, yes, I think it would be very interesting to read your testimonial. Perhaps you read mine?
      Many thanks!

      • alethesia dipsos says:

        Hello again my atheist friend! I had in fact read your testimonial and found it to be refreshingly honest. I respect your views and decisions with no exception.
        I just wrote and posted mine, I am using my blackberry to get internet and by extension, this site – so it took a bit longer than I had hoped to type everything that I wanted to say. Hopefully I did not ramble, I tend to when not following a tight script πŸ™‚

  2. Cblee77 says:

    A pastor once said “What if God didn’t give us a water tight argument but he gave us a water tight person in Jesus Christ, against who in the end there can be no argument.” If you just read about the life of Jesus in the gospels his life is almost inexplicable unless he is who he says he is.

    • anonymous-em says:

      Hi Clbee77
      Thanks for your point.
      (herewith, I use “JC” to mean “Jesus Christ”, I mean not to deminish him, but to simply expidite the writing of my response!).

      I agree with you – if you accept that JC did miracles, then you can validate the authenticity of that act – i.e. if you accept JC did miracles, then you can maintain he did miracles.

      But this is circular reasoning. I’m not saying that JC did, or did not perform miracles. I’m saying that without the bible, you have no way to subscribe to that story – the bible is the ONLY text we have where these miracles are described.

      While I’m happy to admit the possiblity of a person called JC, extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence, and one book does not entail extraordinary evidence. Particularly one that has such a turmultious and selective history as the bible.

  3. MelodyCat says:

    Feel free to do what you like out in PUBLIC.

    Yep go out there and just let your self go.

    Please don’t hold back and be as outrageous as you like.

    Then come back and ask me your questions.

    Thanks

    • anonymous-em says:

      So, as long as I say things that don’t desturb your status quo, you’ll accept my questions?

      I have written a new forum topic – I’d enjoy hearing your take on it.
      It’s about having an open mind, and what that might require or entail.

      Thanks.

  4. lookinforacity says:

    Hi em

    Is it ethical for a parent to
    1) impose upon their child their beliefs, values, morals?
    2) stop a young child from playing with rat poison?
    3) search their child’s room for illegal drugs?
    4) discipline their child for inappropriate behavior?
    5) delegate authority to another over their child?

    Is it ethical for a Gov. to
    1) impose laws upon their people?
    2) restrict their freedom of choice, such as signs saying – stop, wrong way, yield, one way?

    God created Adam equal to Himself, in His own image, but He also added a flesh and blood component which had the same attributes as He had, Adam would live forever unchanging, (never grow old) in perfect harmony with his surroundings. As we ourselves are attempting to do today.
    God did not restrict Adam in any way, being made in Gods’ image, he had a free will do what ever he chose.
    God gave Adam absolute dominion over all of His creation, meaning Adam would determine the future course of the world, and how it would function.
    But going back before the Earth was created, God had created the heavens, populated with Angels to do His bidding, some rebelled against His Rule, Authority, God did not destroy them He just cast them out of His presence, so from that point on in the heavens there existed two diametrically opposed positions known as Good, and Evil.
    God Created the Heavens, and the Earth placing Adam in the middle of His paradise, possessing all of the attributes as Himself, as I said before. Gods’ created being would have the same free will He possessed, making him equal with God.
    The whole point of God creating man was to have fellowship with him. He created a perfectly balance, and harmoniously functioning echo system for him to live in.
    But because of the rebellion that had precipitated the creation of the Earth, God out of His love for His creation, told Adam, there was a tree in the garden, that had a fruit which possessed the knowledge of Good, and Evil. (the knowledge of right, and wrong)
    God not placing restrictions Adam, warned him by saying to Adam, don’t eat that fruit, it will kill you.

    God created Adam, did he have the ethical right to warn him of the danger contained within the fruit?
    Adam had a free will, he chose not to believe God. Thereby bringing upon himself and every following generation of humans, the curse that God had warned Adam of.
    Adam did not only die a physical death, he died a spiritual one as well. We are the product of that decision made by Adam, we have become 100% human, (flesh) we live our lives doing all manner of wrong (evil) because we as flesh do not possess to ability as Adam had before the fall to resist. That is the essence of what free will is. The ability to chose. It also holds us responsible for our actions.

    There comes a time in our lives, when God in His infinite Mercy, gives to us a revelation of Himself, we have the choice to accept Him for who He actually is, Creator of the Heavens, and the Earth, and all the is within them. The choice we have is to acknowledge there is someone greater than ourselves, someone who is actuality The Supreme Being.

    God in His infinite Mercy, reaches down to us, offering to place us back into fellowship (communion) with Himself, offering His reconciliation to us, everything we lost through Adams’ fall, or rejecting it knowing that the end of our self controlled life is ultimate destruction.

    Gods’ revealing Himself to us is only dependent on one thing, “US”. I know you have heard this before but let me explain anyway, you might actually learn something.
    We are the ones that determine when God will reveal Himself to us. God in His infinite wisdom judges our hearts, and the intent of our hearts, knowing the exact moment in time when we have the ability and the desire to make an intelligent decision, because your decision will be binding for all eternity. He wants you to come back into His loving arms, but it will be your free will decision. Therefore it isn’t by our intellect that we can say, OK I am ready now for you to show me your real. There comes a time in everyone’s life, when we out of our hearts desire, really want to know the answer to the question, is God real. This is a time that we ourselves aren’t truly aware of happening. Otherwise it would be us controlling the events, and the whole point of the exercise, is to get you to understand that you have no control over anything. That’s nothing more than our self pride.

    There is so much more, but if you don’t get this, you won’t get anything anyone says. Everything else that can be discussed is semantics, moot as you say, and circular thinking, it isn’t about logic, it’s about FAITH, and until you personally walk through that door into eternal life in Jesus Christ, you will never understand what we have been attempting to get you to understand. Just Know that we do not hate you, you are a fellow human being, we are all given the same choice to make, we do not think we are better than you, all we are capable of doing for you is plant some seeds into your thinking, hopefully some day they will grow to where you will have a desire to really know the truth, then you will be ready to hear directly from your Father, God. But until that happens, be aware of your surroundings, be aware that God is in fact speaking to you every day of your life, something as simple as when you drive your car God is speaking to you very quietly, stop your going the wrong way, yield your life to me, and I will show you the one way, until you do come to the knowledge of the truth.

    Be Blessed
    JIM

    • anonymous-em says:

      Hi jim,
      The meat of your point is that god is essentially providing us with guidelines to assure our safety, similar to the guidelines and rules imposed by parents, or more broadly, by the laws in our state/country. To quickly answer your question – no, it is not unethical to make SOME laws – and I’ll ask you to describe the ethicality of another law later, after I’ve tried to answer your post.
      There’s a few reasons that your analogy is flawed – I’ll try to detail them. Note that pointing out why your analogy is flawed, is not the same as me “not understanding them”. I understand your point, I also understand why the analogy is flawed.
      The fundamental differences between parents and God is, of course, that God is God. Not a parent. God is not constrained by the limitations of an imperfect brain. He is not constrained by an inability to “think like we do”, and he is not impeded by language – at least, in theory.
      Parents, on the other hand, ARE. Parents can’t efficiently communicate with a 1 year old to explain why eating rat poison is bad, or why co-operation is important. They simply don’t have the means, the intelligence nor the time to do it.
      God is omnipresent, he is omnipotent, and he is certainly omni-literate. There is absolutely no reason at all that a god,God or gods should have any difficulty at all in communicating effectively and efficiently, but more importantly, unambiguously, with us. Demonstrably, he does have this problem – about one third of all humanity claim to have heard god.
      Is it ethical for a govt. to put “one way” signs?
      Of course not, and the reason is that the ramifications of “one way” are immediately obvious to all drivers. The law, the reason, and the outcomes of such laws are easily understood and easily accessible by all. I.e. is is very, very clearly justified.
      But you also asked, is it ethical for a govt. to apply laws to it’s people…And here I’ll ask you to comment on one hypothetical law that DOES have precedent.
      the answer is “it depend on the law being imposed”. Laws to restrict, violate or infringe on personal human rights and that do not have a valid, factual backing, are UNETHICAL. “one way” is not one of these because while it restricts our freedoms, it also saves many, many more lives. I DO have an example of a law which IS unethical, but I won’t explicitly detail it yet. I’d like you to be a player in your own game.
      Is it ethical for a govt. to impose a law where all women must wear a hajib?
      Of course, my motivation is clear – is it ethical to impose laws only have relevance to a specific religion? To write my question more transparently:
      It is ethical for a govt. to impose a law that is only justified by circular (and illogical) reasoning?
      I look forward to your answer.

      • lookinforacity says:

        Hi em

        I cannot count the times you have used the terms circular thinking, (reasoning), or illogical.
        We have seen you use this same mode of thought that you disdain so much, all of your arguments go back to the same point.
        You ask a question about a country, or countries that are essentially closed to outside western religious influence, the people living within these countries are all followers of the religion of the state. The two are synonymous, the laws then imposed upon it’s people, can be either civil or religious laws, they (the state) do not make any kind of distinction between the two. in those countries where the wearing of the hajib is law, a person such as an (ayatollah – or – imam) have the voice in what the Gov. puts out as law, if not them specifically, then some other religious leader.
        It is a similar system as that of the old USSR. there were officials of the Gov. but there were also officials of the Party, the Party had the Veto Power that the Gov. did not have, so things were done according to the Parties wishes not the Govts.
        The point is, these are closed societies, as long as the people live within these societies, they are bound by the rules regulations laws of the Gov, that is also their religious leader.
        When they leave the confines of the country, they are only bound by their own free will (conscience) such as the Muslims in France, those women have the right to not wear it if they do not want to. But strangely enough it seems they do want to wear it. But the Christian churches have no such law, therefore I cannot give an opinion upon religious matters I have no understanding as to why “THEY” do require the wearing of the hajib.
        If a woman going to any of these countries not being a Muslim, has to wear one, that is their law, and it is in most cases I imagine State Gov. law.
        ***************************************
        When you say
        “The fundamental differences between parents and God is, of course, that God is God. Not a parent.”
        It is at this point you are fundamentally wrong, I am sure you will differ, but that is irrelevant.
        God is a parent.
        Gen 1:27
        So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.

        CREATE: to cause to come into being; make or produce; to cause to happen; bring about; arrange, as by intention or design: to create

        We as human beings procreate.
        PROCREATE: To produce or create; originate. to bring into being.

        God created the angels
        Job 1:6
        Now there was a day when the (SONS OF GOD) came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan came also among them.

        God is the Father of all Christians
        Gal 4:6
        And because (YE ARE SONS), God hath sent forth the Spirit of his Son into your hearts, crying,(ABBA, FATHER).

        I already know to you, this is illogical thinking on our part, right? not valid scientific proof.
        I keep saying it’s not about logic, it’s about FAITH.

        Here you managed to contradict your own philosophy, you believe in the theory of evolution and then say.
        “God is omnipresent, he is omnipotent, and he is certainly omni-literate”
        How can you believe He is all of these things, if you also believe, He isn’t what, and who He says He is, and then still be an atheist?
        End “O” game, the fat lady has sung, check and mate, I will turn out the lights when I leave.

        Be Blessed
        JIM

        • anonymous-em says:

          End “O” game is it?
          Mate, the game ended before I started. What is interesting is that you think this is a “game”.

          I’m sorry that you object to my use of “circular reasoning”, but suffice to say, your objection does not make such reasoning valid, or non-circular. Nor does incorrectly and fallaciously declaring, without description, that my points are circular.

          Quite frankly, your response has nothing to do either with your question, nor with my reply above.

          Your question –
          Is it ethical for a parent to teach a child how to “not” kill themselves- the answer of course, is yes.
          It is ethical for a government to impose laws to mitigate fatal accidents – the answer of course, is yes.

          At no time did I specifically address a “country”. I have no idea why you even suggested this.Another example of you failing to understand the point, or to even address it. your ongoing penchant for bringing up irrelevant points to support your irrelevant response is, quite honestly, tedious.

          I’m going to ask this question again – and this time, please jim, don’t try to dodge it so transparently – if you HAVE to dodge it, at least do so intelligently.

          Do you consider ethical, the imposition, by law, of religion?
          It makes no difference WHAT that law is, WHERE it is, I’m bewildered that you think it does.

          Answer the question – and briefly too, if you can, without a long list of contrived and/or irrelevant points.
          This has nothing to do with circadian rhythms,

          Re. god being a parent.
          Wonderful, apparently you are “sure I will differ, but that is irrelevant” – perhaps you would also care to comment on my forum topic about having a closed mind? This is a wonderful demonstration of exactly what I mean in that blog… anyhow.

          To circumvent the relevance of your .. well, it’s a diatribe really, because you fail to realise the thrust of my point – I’ll present you with the REAL difference between god and “parents”.

          I can not only physically touch my parent, I can irrefutably and uniquely comprehend the reality of their actions.
          quite simply, jim, that’s all there is to it.

          Parents are very, very real. The ramifications of their wisdom is also, very, very real, and very very obvious. A child sticking their finger in a power socket quickly learns why they were told not to – by their parents. Your god has no such recourse. The ramifications of disobedience to your god are cryptic, subjective and intangible.
          Disobedience to laws and parents have an immediate and very, very obvious ramification. The same is absolutely not the case for your god.

          so contrived and irrelevant is your post, and so disingenuous is your failure to comprehend, or respond to my question, that I’m not going to address the rest of your post.

          Jim, I’m probably going to stop responding to you if you continue in this way- I’ve already met people like you who attempt to obfuscate and derail useful conversations – usually with condescension and irrelevance. I left them all behind in highschool.

          Answer my question, or simply don’t answer at all. Deliberate obfuscation is tedious and juvenile in the extreme.

  5. lookinforacity says:

    Hi em

    Not wanting to insult you, I will offer some scripture for you to contemplate.

    Joh 3:16
    For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

    1Co 1:25
    Because the foolishness of God is wiser than men; and the weakness of God is stronger than men.

    1Co 2:14
    But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

    1Co 3:19
    For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God. For it is written, He taketh the wise in their own craftiness.

    Pro 1:7
    The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.

    Pro 9:10
    The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.

    Pro 15:14
    The heart of him that hath understanding seeketh knowledge: but the mouth of fools feedeth on foolishness.

    If you only come away three things. 1Co 2:14 – – Pro 15:14 – – Joh 3:16

    You have voiced, “our beliefs are but foolishness to you”, this is because you my friend are nothing more than a mere natural man, you can have no understanding of Spiritual matters, and never will as long as you continue in the direction you are now going.
    Out of your own mouth, you have declared you have no understanding in your heart, therefore being devoid of understanding you can not really be seeking knowledge either.
    So what we have found, is that you neither have Understanding or Knowledge, and without these two components you also will never possess any Wisdom.
    But all is not lost, if you are truly here to learn, then start the journey of a seeker. Eyes wide open, heart full of doubt, ask the questions you personally need answers to, the answers you have never gotten answered.
    Last but not least is this last tidbit of information for you.

    Joh 6:44
    No man can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him: and I will raise him up at the last day.

    Rom 9:16
    So then it is not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth, but of God that sheweth mercy.

    Eph 2:8
    For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God:

    In Gods’ timing He will call you, when He does give you the Revelation of Jesus as your savior, don’t reject it.
    All of us on this forum, will be praying for Gods’ mercy to be extended to you. Without you knowing of it.

    This Revelation from God will come unto you soon
    JIM

    • anonymous-em says:

      Thanks lookinforacity
      As you might have guessed, I have already studied a little of your scripture, suffice to say that I think it’s probably not effective to cite scripture to someone who you know has already read and considered it and found it lacking.
      I regard your scriptures as lacking – therefore, it’s already moot to cite scripture to me, without explaining why YOU think they’re important.

      I find the references you cite as flawed, mostly because they strike me as hypocritical –
      In particular, god “so loves the world” – that he previously drowned it? God’s previous solution to saving mankind was to drown them. Of course, this is not “saving” – but punishing – so why did he punish us all in the first case, but choose to save us in the second case? I think you can see why the deliverance seems to me, to be “too little, too late”.

      The dominant word in your post is “fool”.
      It’s interesting that you disingenuously purport to not insult me, and then pepper your post with insults – so lets look at where this word appears in the bible a bit more:
      more often cited, are psa 14:1 (The fool says in his heart, β€œThere is no God.”..) Note L4AC, I have not said this.
      and psa 92:6 (Senseless people do not know, fools do not understand), In this case, fools do not understand god. wWhat is the difference between “understand” and “agree with”? I’ll maintain that I can understand a point of view, without agreeing with it. Therefore, I’m not a fool on this count either.

      Let me present a thought experiment – if you were attempting to sell an idea to a group of people, one way to help you do it is to ridicule and insult those who contest the idea – would you agree? In logical parlance, this is known as an ad hominem – an approach that attempts to invalidate the points made by the individual, not by addressing the points, but by insulting the individual.

      Essentially, you have caved into the tendency, ubiquitous throughout the bible, to engage in what is nothing more than prepubescent ad hominem. NONE of these verses are valid arguments in the slightest. ALL of them are simply a scare campaign on behalf of the bible, to attempt to recruit unbelievers by insulting them. You yourself may have engaged in a similar tactic – although I hope as an adult, you now see the futility of it. Strangely enough, you probably object to using ad hominem in normal circumstances, but feel it is justified in attempting to export or validate your faith.

      So – you can use the bible to call me a fool if you wish – unfortunately, such insults are really only very superficial and fail to address anything at all – I think you should confine ad hominem attacks to the junior highschool playground where they belong. Maintaining such concepts as – “it’s not ‘me’ calling you a fool, it’s the bible/god” are immaterial and do not excuse you from accepting responsibility for using or citing them. They ARE ad hominem – regardless of where they come from.

      Present your case without insult AND without couching your insults in cowardly representations – or don’t present it at all.

      • Timothy Luke says:

        I find the references you cite as flawed, mostly because they strike me as hypocritical – In particular, god "so loves the world" – that he previously drowned it?

        Would you shoot a horse, or a dog, if it were injured with no hope of recovery, nor meaningful life? That would be the loving thing to do. It seems hypocritical to me that one who would accept the behavior of putting an animal out of its misery as being an act of love, would not allow for God to do likewise and with a motive of love.

        Ironically, you are stating that is strikes you as hypocritical (and hence elevating yourself above the masses of hypocrites) only to betray yourself as being hypocritical about hypocrites… presuming you would admit there is a time to put an animal out of its misery.

        Which brings up another dimension.  Man, without God, is simply an animal, so why would one think this fictitious "God" should show him a greater response than to put him out of His misery?

        Question: I get amused by some atheists who are mad at God, and in their anger and stubbornly refuse to admit he exists out of spite. If there truly IS NO GOD, what is the genesis of anger toward His Person?

        • anonymous-em says:

          Hi timothy.
          I’ll first address your question – I’m not angry at your god at all. Not in the slightest. I regard the bible as a myth, not a fact. I am no more angry at your god than I am at captain hook.

          Additionally, I absolutely DO NOT maintain that your god does not exist. This is NOT what “atheist” means – “atheist” means: no belief in a god, it does NOT mean “belief in no god” – the two interpretations are very similar, but have very, very different meanings. I am the former – not the latter.

          Now – you raise the point.
          That god drowns innocent people because they have no prospects for a happy life. You maintain that this is evidence of His love. I’ve paraphrased this slightly, but I think it’s what you mean.
          I’ll describe why this is incorrect.

          You suggest that we shoot injured horses. True. Noteably, we don’t drown them. But more detail on this now:

          We shoot injured horses because our medical technology is inadequate to prevent their prolonged suffering. We SHOOT them, because shooting is the fastest and most humane means generally available – vetinarians don’t shoot, they chemically induce death. Of course, they do this for the same reason – they don’t have the medical technology available to alleviate suffering.

          But we’re not talking about vets. Doctors, or shooting. We’re talking about a god. And we’re talking about drowning. To make the scenario worse – drowning takes a god 5-10 minutes, it surely hurts and you are quite concious the entire time – you can see – you can think. you can watch people watching you drown – and if you’re a baby drowning in the genesis floods, you’re suffering AND watching your parents drown in front of you.

          Personally, this strikes me as slightly worse than horrific.
          So why drowning? God is not a barbarian, so why choose one of the most awful and prolonged, inhumane ways to kill people? Why not simply “deliver” the innocents, and torture the rest (since, drowing really is torture for 5-10 minutes).

          there are two possibilities here –
          1. the bible is wrong or incomplete
          2. god is wrong.

          re- hypocrisy.
          Well, I would be hypocritical if I were a god. I am not and my means to “deliver” injured animals is significantly diminished compared to a god who has the power to create a universe.

          I’d be interested to hear your conclusion (especially if they are different to mine), and your reasoning leading to the conclusion.

          • Timothy Luke says:

            Thanks for the invite.

            God has eternity at his disposal…. he has the power of resurrection at his disposal. He has the power of restoration and forgiveness at his disposal. As horrific as one may make the 5-10 minute drowning scenario, let me say I kill chickens for the freezer. God placed (in my conviction) chickens on earth for food, and hence for slaughter. They go into a sedate mode where they appear asleep, before you put the blade to the throat even. Scripture is silent on the degree of suffering at the time of drowning. Because it is silent on this, I have just as much legitimacy in saying that a God who would put a violent world out of its misery, would also anesthetize them, or call a stupor over them to minimize the 'final" suffering.

            You say there are two possibilities, but I submit the above as a third possibility. You would tend to impute the barbarian motives, for what reason? Why assume it went that way and then be mad about it going that way?

            Often we say God is supernatural and big enough to do it the way we think it should have been done, yet we elevate the purity and sanity of our motives above God and impute inferior motives and methods to him. Are Gods means and motives inferior, or is it simply our interpretation of them that diminishes something greater than our comprehension?

          • anonymous-em says:

            Hi tim,

            by saying #2 (the bible is wrong), I suppose I should say that I regard incompletenes as incorrectness. But nontheless, you’ve highlighted one of my more important (and as-yet unspoken) points.

            The bible is extremely vague on important points, to the extent that serious contrivances must be made to perpetuate the appearance of a “loving” god. In your case, you’ve suggested that god did “something” before the public were drowned – certainly this is possible, but I think it’s a rather significant act, specifically because it would show exactly how loving your god is – yet it is conspicuously absent. The casual reader is left, in the first instance, with the most basic interpretation, which is also the most horrible.

            It’s difficult to present points to reason against such contrivances, so I won’t. I’ll just point out that having to “make it up as we go along” is not something that I think is a strength of the bible.

            We’re indirectly adressing the concept of communication by the bible and your god, which I think is the motivation for your second point: I think you’re saying that us, as mere mortals, have not the capacity nor the right to expect that god would operate to the same morals as us.

            I’ll vehemently reject this – again, your god is infinitely wise – it therefore seems very strange to me that he is not able to find a way to act OR to explain his acts to me, would understand. The bible is packed with comments, notes, doctrines and decrees that, even after considerable thought, are still ambiguous and highly divisive. While the bible is written by man, it is nonetheless inspired by god. There is no way to avoid the fact that, as the only available manual from god, it’s very badly and ambiguously written. Surely god would understand this at least, and if he doesn’t think it’s necessary to provide us with an unambiguous version, he would be tolerant of the multitude of plausible and different interpretations that have resulted?

      • lookinforacity says:

        Hi em

        You have managed to attack my motive, and thereby my character, you have assumed what I wrote was directed at you personally. What you have done my friend, is by definition ad hominem. If I had any intention on insulting you, I most assuredly would have used the verses you answered with. My intent was pure, I had no other motive than showing you what the bible has to say for the person in your position. If you would look back at my post, you will find I did not in any way attack, demean you.

        That is chapter one of our correspondence, now that you understand I am not attacking you, lets start again, you have come here wanting answers, were here to answer them. So ask before things get so out of hand with MISUNDERSTANDING that you never get any answers at all.

        You have just as many preconceived ideas about us and our motives, as we have about you and yours.
        So lets cut the crap and get down to some serious dialog.
        I have a question for you to start with.
        1) Why does the ocean not overflow it’s bounds.

        Be Blessed
        JIM

        • anonymous-em says:

          Hi jim,
          It would appear then, that your original post was rather too easy to interpret as an insult. If that’s not the case, then I invite you to resubmit a new post, without the imlications that I am being a fool –

          If you didn’t wish to make that implication, then it would be advised to simply delete them.
          I will say no more on the topic – I find it slightly dull to be called a fool – even implicitly.

          “why does the ocean not overflow it’s bounds…..”
          this is an odd question – I’m not sure what you’re driving at. I hope it’s a straight question and not an attempt to create a logical trap – disingenuity also bores me.

          Define “bounds of the ocean”, the mechanism by which you suggest it MIGHT, overflow said bounds. etc. etc.

          • lookinforacity says:

            Hi em

            I am truly sorry, I thought I had put forward a totally logical question for you.
            I am sure that just about anyone on this forum would be able to answer such a simple question.
            Here again is my question for you as first posed.

            1) Why does the ocean not overflow it’s bounds.

            It is understood that the bounds of the ocean are the Coastlines of the would. The ocean stays within these bounds, flowing back and forth in rhythm and time with the tides, (circadian rhythm) never overflowing the earth, except upon special occasions ie, (Hurricanes) as you would surely agree being an astrophysicist, always returning to it’s place behind the boundaries of the Coastlines. Why is this, what is the logic that says this happens, has Physics explained this phenomenon?

            *******************************************

            Secondly
            In order for you to be able to understand what I am talking about, you personally must be born again, you need to comprehend the fact, that whoever is born naturally in the flesh is flesh, and likewise whoever is born spiritually by the Spirit of God is spirit. You my friend, are still in the flesh, so don’t let what I have just said confuse you, because unless you are born again, you will never see, or enter into the things that we have.
            Ok lets try it this way, when the wind blows, you can hear the sound of it but you cannot tell where it came from, or where it has gone. This then is what everyone which has been born of the Spirit of God is like.
            Remember, you are the one that wanted to know these things, so don’t be thinking this is impossible. Maybe now you can see our difficulty, you have all kinds of doctorates, degrees, and fellowships, but even with all of that, you do not know these simplest of things. I am trying to tell you, we the people of this forum are speaking the truth about the things we know, and we have testified about the things we have seen, but you still will not believe what we have witnessed to you about.
            If you are incapable of understanding the simplest things of nature by your logic, how then do think you will ever come to the knowledge of the truth that we possess, without your first coming to this same belief, (Faith) that we have in Christ?
            I have already told you, at this point in your life, with all of your degrees, they do not qualify you to speak on spiritual matters, you do not possess the three qualities necessary. Knowledge, Understanding, Wisdom.
            Because, the fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom: and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.
            That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him. That’s my prayer for you.555

            Be Blessed
            JIM

          • anonymous-em says:

            Jim,
            Thanks jim, for demonstrating exactly why your question is necessarily vague. I can’t answer your question, beacause it’s meaningless and incorrect. Allow me to show you why.

            “It is understood that the bounds of the ocean are the Coastlines of the would. The ocean stays within these bounds, flowing back and forth in rhythm and time with the tides, (circadian rhythm) never overflowing the earth,”
            No, actually it’s not understood at all. As you know, coastlines erode, they change over time. Over a few thousands of years , some coasts may change significantly. Over hundreds of thousands of years, entire continents move. As you may not recall from highshool – even the highest mountains in the world were once underwater – as is evidenced by fossil remanats found in the vicinity.

            Yet another rather fundamental error is describing tides as a circadian rhythm. Even 30 seconds using wikipedia would help you learn why a tide is not a “endogenously driven roughly 24-hour cycle in biochemical, physiological, or behavioural processes”

            an astrophysicist, since you seem to be unclear, generally studies astronomy, not coasts.

            “Why is this, what is the logic that says this happens, has Physics explained this phenomenon?”
            Logic does not say this happens, nor does fact nor evidence.

            Jim, i’m happy to respond to your questions, but not thinly veiled condescension, particularly when your facts are demonstrably wrong, and your understading of the words you use, incomplete. I’m sure you can see now why your question was strange to me.

            Now – you explicitly referred to wind.
            Wind I CAN measure – so can you. so can anyone, regardless of the books they read. We can also predict where it’s come from with good accuracy, and we can guess where it’s going. We know these things because we have learned the properties of wind. We don’t need to “see” a moving gas particle to prove it exists. We can feel it, we can meausre it, we can predict it. I can. you can. Zhing Zhaou can, Abdul can, and Singh can. All nationalities, all religions.

            Then you comment that being unable to understand simple things with logic means that we are unable to understand your god – true. this is because your God is not logical, but it has nothing to do with our ability to apply logic or not – god, God and gods are ALWAYS illogical. Logic doesn’t enter into it.

            Jim, then you assert that my degrees don’t qualify me to be spiritual. Well, That’s fine – if you want to issue a salvo, my response is that your faith certainly does not qualify you to discuss logic, nor does it qualify you to ask questions that are demonstrably irrelevant and incorrect, nor does it qualify you to suggest that tides are in fact, a phyiological phenomenon.

            Again, please be careful with the words you use, and the questions you ask. If you can’t ask them straight out without being irrelevantly poetic, then please don’t ask the question.

  6. michael says:

    These guys are theists with PhDs in Science. Have you read any of their work?

     

    By the way, what are your academic qualifications?

    • anonymous-em says:

      Since you ask, and for what it’s worth,
      I also have a few postgraduate qualifications. currently and for the last decade or so, I am a research scientist in astrophysical phenomena.
      Having said that, I think it’s probably important to acknowledge the futility of claiming academic qualifications as anonymous users online. I have received threats from others online in the past, so I hope you understand when I choose to withold any further information about me. You can accept my statement or not. Personally, I am more interested in the veracity and substance of argument, than academic qualification.

      I’ll also suggest that both asking for, and my provison of my qualifications is fraught with problems: I have seen qualified, employed research engineers claim they have produced perpetual motion machines – which violates some of the fundamental physical laws, and unsurprisingly, then fail to actually BE a perpetual motion machine when rigourously tested. I know of thermodynamics professors who confuse newton’s laws of motion with the laws of thermodynamics too.

      Asking for qualifications is NORMALLY a safe way to gauge competence, but not always. The best thing to do is to double-check anything people say, by requesting factual support – ideally from peer-reviewed journals if the concept is relatively new, but appealing to freshman-level university texts is sometimes sufficient.
      Humans are humans – we get things wrong. Usually we get things right, but not always.

      now, as for dembski, ross and behe….
      Dembski and Behe are folks at the Discovery institute and/or ICR are they not?
      There’s quite a few people who maintain similar perspectives – but these names have become figureheads because of their regular in-media appearances I suppose.

      The work of theirs that I have read would be limited to that which is freely available online from the discovery institute. My opinion of these folks is…. very poor. During my postdoctorate research years, I personally accumulated more publications that the entire of the DI holds at present. This is not an arrogant claim – most postdoctorates have more than the ~10 publications of the DI – what is also interesting is that out of the ~10 they have, almost none of them present anything that could be said to usefully support intelligent design. The DI simply do not follow the scientific method – they have an incestuous peer-review system that is disregarded as closed, opaque and biased by the rest of the scientific community. Quite simply, they SAY they do science, but they don’t. They get around this by simply redefining what “science” is.

      Demski’s qualifications seem to be rooted in philosophy – and personally, this is all that the DI seems to amount to – a philosophical movement with lawyers, but no factually-defensible substance. I am happy with philosophy, but not when it’s legally imposed as law on others.
      Behe is a particularly interesting character because of his involvement with the completely discredited “irreducible complexity” – I know of no work by him in the last 5 years or so, following the rejection of his in-court “expert witness” roles.

      ross, I gather, is not part of the DI. From the information I’ve gleaned about him, it seems that he maintains a kind of deistic perspective – and day-age creationism.
      Between the three you mention, I would maintain that Ross’s perspective is the least objectionable since it at least attempts to acknowledge observed fact (or at least, more of them than does the DI). It also attempts to be more “scientific” by making various predictions… or so the story goes – I have to admit that I’m ignorant of the details of his model.

      You might be hinting at my opinion of the utility for explaining god scientifically – so here it is.
      Science necessarily demands and requires logic. Religion explicitly and necessarily rejects logic – I mean this not disrespectfully, but the fact is that a god is blindly asserted to be in existence – of course this is a logical fallacy. This is not to say that it is “incorrect”, but it is certainly illogical. Logic may not be the “only” tool we have to use, but it certainly is the best one we know about – and it’s crucial for science. It is nonsensical to attempt to marry logic and illogic – they are necessarily mutually exclusive. They can be engaged sequentially, but not concurrently, and it is a contradiction in terms, as well as redundant to attempt to validate religion scientifically.

  7. My name is Tim and I have a deliverance minestry and I am an author.You should feel welcomed at this web sight because it is one of the best sightsI have ever been to.Its great that you are willing to reach out and get answersthats cool.When I was a psychic making allot of money I to wanted to know the truth.So I got savedand nowI help people understand curses,psychic, and satanic powers.Well I hope you stay around because thisis agreat web sight Tim

  8. Heya anonymous-em

     

    Just wanted to post this vid from youtube you might find interesting and/or convincing for the proof of God from a scientific, 'naturalist' point of view.

     



    • anonymous-em says:

      Hello 3chelon,
      Thanks for your welcome and your suggestion – VenomfangX is unfortunately a rather notorious EX-poster to youtube. If you kept track of the hoo-haa about two years ago, you’ll have notice there was some considerable…. controversy.. about him. He left in something resembling disgrace. Then came back a few times…

      VenomfangX is not a good example to present – for the very good reason that he’s not especially well clued in to observation and data. The claims he makes are inconsistent with, or directly contradict verifiable observation, or at worse, are simply completely unasserted and pulled out of a hat (one of his more memorable declarations is that the grand canyon was produced in “about 5 seconds”). Moreover, that particular post is outrageously flawed in any number of ways – I can detail these if you like, but perhaps at another time. The owner of that parcitula profile “letstalkchrist”, hosts a number of other videos which are also very easily demonstrated as false and contrived.

      On youtube, There is a rather caustic series that addresses with his movies directly, by a chap called Thunderfoot. The series is entitled “why do we laugh at creationists”. Caustic. like I said, but it’s is a complete rebuttal, and IS actually consistent with modern scientific thought (part of VFX’s problem is that he misunderstand what it is that scientists DO say, and simply gets it wrong, as does Kent Hovind, the ICR and the Discovery institute, again, I can point these out, the most notable example is references to a “crocoduck”).

      While VERY happy to listen to real, valid, logical evidence that does, or even MAY support the existence of a god, venomfangX has little, or even none.

      I DO have an open mind – but I also have a questioning one – if he exists, I can’t believe that a god put us here to unquestioningly believe what we’re told. I know I like it when kids ask me questions about things I’ve told them. I enjoy it when they try to nail me with logic too – and sometimes it gets me in a bit of a sticky situation when I can’t answer! – back to the journals I go!.

      I HAVE watched venomfangX’s series, and kent hovinds, and many others. Aside from the inevitable arrogance, they simply fail to present a logical or supportable documentary.

  9. Thank you Timothy Luke.
    I think you did the right thing by praying 4 him.
    Everthing happens for a reason & it may be that the Holy Spirit is umptioning him to seek for answers.Heavenly Father I pray that you will Bless our atheist friend & direct him according to your will.

  10. Timothy Luke says:

    Welcome to Christian-faith!

    You are welcome here. It is hard to (being completely frank here) think of dialoging with you, since it is so easy for a conversation to degenerate into flame throwing. I like the tone of your blog and the circumspection with which it is written. You appear to be quite aware that we all can have unintended tones attributed to what we say, and have them not be there in our hearts. This gives us a measure of grace to converse and allow for the other to explain themselves, or apologize, if they indeed have overstepped.

    I would like to bring this perspective to the table. Jesus said, (please consider him at least historically relevant — you do believe that a man named Jesus walked the earth and that his words are accurately recorded, though in saying this, a person can question everything to avoid believing anything — I took my wife to Long Horn Steakhouse for our anniversary, but if you pressed me to prove it, without a signed receipt, and even that could be said to be a forgery, I still cannot make you believe I went) ….

    Jesus said, "according to your faith, be it unto you." I believed Him to be God and I entreated Him and the Father, as God, and they did the medically impossible, and they audibly spoke to my wife in the process… the beginning and the end of it … and not before nor since. (hmmm, I cannot prove that to a second party. I cannot prove it was not a psychologically induced anomaly, anymore than I can prove to you I bought a lunch at Taco Bell yesterday… yet, I affirm the validity of what I am saying to be accurate)

    I believed for years in God, without receiving healing when I prayed to Him. YET, when I saw the reasons I did not receive healing, and confessed where I was not following the path outlined in the Bible. When we chose to line up with scripture in our hearts and in our conduct, the Lord spoke, and immediately made open the prison doors of my wife's illness and we came out — when medically speaking, there was no way to come out.

    You may read Our Story and let me know if it means anything to you…. for surely, it means everything to me… and I am sure you can understand and respect that.

    Please, allow me to pray for you, since my God tells me "no man can come to me, except the Father in Heaven draws him," and "no man can know the things of God, except the spirit of God" shows him.

    You have come, asking to discuss spiritual things to learn of them. I assume you are sincere in that quest. To achieve your goal, you may need to allow one like myself to use my faith to not only explain my faith, but to entreat God to open your eyes further than what they can see in the natural. Please do not be offended in this. You are asking for a spiritual conversation, on spiritual issues, though asking it to be done in a purely natural way. Can you see the tight rope we are on? πŸ™‚ So, I shall pray openly, against your wish, so that in the end, you will know what my heart before God is concerning you.

    "Father, thank you for em. He has a good mind, perhaps even a good heart that is simply not good enough… for no man is adequate on his own… this is why you sent a savior, 'that whosoever believes on Him should not perish." You tell us, 'all have sinned.' You tell us, 'the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life.' Father, I pray for this intelligent, considerate fellow human being. I petition you to give him eyes to see and ears to hear the mysteries of absolute truth and the reality of our need for a saviour, and for Jesus Christ specifically. He needs a saviour as much as I do. I thank you so very much for accepting this ordinary nobody I call me, and I pray you would extend your grace and faith to em to see beyond his peepers and into eternity. In Jesus' name I pray. And help him see I am not demeaning him by asking these things of you, any more than he would be demeaning me by insinuating that by my petitioning you I am appealing to an inferior mythological power that is beneath his dignity. amen."

    • anonymous-em says:

      Timothy,
      It’s not “him” that you’re demeaning when you pray for me, it’s you.

      I asked you not to, I told you why. What you’ve demonstrated is an intolerance for my position, when I have tried to come here in full acceptance of your views, and embracing the philosophies of freedom of thought, and freedom of religion.

      What you’re saying is that you don’t think that I should think the way I do. And that I should think like you. Some might describe this as intolerance, but to me, it demonstrates more of an insecurity.

      I realise you think I should be saved, but from my point of view – YOU need to be saved. Would you like me to wish upon you that you were not theistic? Would you like me to wish upon you, that you rejected your god and lived a life without him? Probably not – so, as the bible teaches, respect my position, and I will respect yours.

      I apologise if my note is a bit caustic – but you did do, exactly what I asked you not to. As I said, I find that quite insulting. I am trying to avoid conversations that degenerate into bickering, and you’re not helping by explicity doing something I asked you not to do!

      • Timothy Luke says:

        "when I have tried to come here in full acceptance of your views,"

        This is where things get muddled quickly. "Full acceptance of my views" is more than an intellectual thing… It is deeply spiritual and personal. God saved me. He worked above and beyond the realm of flesh and blood, and took a set of syndromes and diseases and disbanded them with a word.

        I humble myself before Him and I know full well in my heart that HE will lift me up in due season…. in fact he already has, because if you read Our Story, you would see I had been living with my wife for over six years in "survival" mode. Just getting from one day to the next without dying was an accomplishment… then the Lord spoke audibly and set us free as the invisible chains of disease came away in the name of Jesus Christ. When symptoms returned, my wife handed them over to Jesus, 'who heals all your diseases" and "by whose stripes we are healed."

        Full acceptance of my views would mean you understood that I am a Christian in heart, soul, mind and body. You are limited to your mind and it is not large enough to comprehend what I am sharing. This is why I must pray… because if I love you and want the very best for you, I can only ask of the One who gave to me.

        I have accepted your right to freedom of thought. That simply means I accept you have the right to think and act as you will. God gave you that right. You have the right to think you have that right because you are a chemically energized piece of matter… but then, you are contradicting yourself in that, because you claim a moral, hence implicitly spiritual, right to your beliefs… this should tell you something about your premise, but without spiritual eyes to see, you will not see. You have a right to think as you will… and I have a right to disagree and declare my point of disagreement.

        Does this mean I despise you? God forbid! You can have as nice a day as you can piece together on your own, and I will harbor no ill will – even if you have more money or power than myself.

        You may wish upon me anything you like. If your wishes come from a mere person, what is that to me? See, this is the spiritual dimension again. You are more than your thoughts. My thoughts perturb you, (it is not my intent) because I am more than one chemical blob emitting signals to another chemical blob…. You have a heart. This is your spirit. This is your core. You are perturbed to your spiritual core that I do not agree that there is no spiritual God who created you and I.

        If you look again at my post. Nowhere did I ask God to save you. I asked him to give you eyes to see and ears to hear… but I did not ask Him to over-ride your free will and choose life through Jesus Christ…. At least grant me a point for good conduct in that regard! πŸ™‚

        Yes, I took a liberty with you, and I explained why, in hopes that would overcome your objection and grant me permission to directly disobey your request… Please accept my apology. I will keep my prayers off the conversation. I do appreciate you explaining why it offends you. I will humble myself before my God at all times, however, and you need  not feel belittled by that, nor threatened. It is simply how I relate to one who has done and is doing, and will continue to do, so many wonderful things for me.

        Take a look at Our Story and tell me if you can imagine my wife being underweight, haggard, listless, confused and unable to eat, wear, inhale, or drink anything that had chemical exposure, or even electromagnetics. Look at the slide presentation of all she is doing today, and all she could not do before. Then, please, cut me some slack for loving, believing in, and worshipping the One who opened the heavens and spoke "Rise and walk" to my dear wife.

        For those who have read Our Story, this link will give you a slide presentation that you may appreciate!

        em, I have not looked at how your thread has gone today, but know that I respect your right to choose your beliefs. I respect your right to disagree with me. I hope we both can have that respect and go forward.

        May I ask a question? As a Christian, I hear from atheists many demeaning comments about how violent and fanatical people of faith are. Why is it that the atheistic governments of mankind are documented to have killed tens of millions of people in their pursuit of purgng their nations of religion, and atheists still have the nerve to call religion violent and hateful? Why, if they truly intellectually care about war and violence, do they often speak as if, if a person did not believe in God there would be no war? 

        One observation I have is that a person tends to live up to what they think of themselves. If I believe I came forth from a benevolent God of love, and mercy and righteous living, I will seek to live on a higher moral level. If a person sees themselves as simply matter with a motor, coming from amoebas and monkeys and slime, I do not see how they could embrace, or if the personally believed it, could they have a basis for arguing for any moral code, or have any conscience about hurting and killing those who disagree? Seeing the brutality of Hitler, Stalin, Mao, et al, I would choose to die at the hands of atheism, while loving the atheists with the love of Christ, rather than die an atheist. This is my opinion of me. I am not saying you are a murderer, I am simply saying the logic of atheism, coupled with Darwinian thought, is a scary mix.

        There, I'll take bonus points for rambling too!

        • anonymous-em says:

          thanks for your response tim,
          Since you raise some interesting points and questions, I’ll try to respond to some of them:

          I’ll maintain my usage of “acceptance” of someone’s view is to acknowledge it’s existence and to accept your right to have it. To “accept” a view, in my context, does not require I share it.

          While you might claim that I am limited because I don’t share your view, I claim that YOU are limited in your ability to process and critique data and information to a plausible or realistic extent.
          I don’t close my mind to your god tim – I merely require that he be logical., and moreover, that I don’t have to be ILLOGICAL to follow him.
          The very moment that my requirement is fulfilled, I will follow him. Guaranteed.
          I hope this demonstrates that I am NOT closed to your god. Ipsofacto, can you convince me that your view is also not closed to other alternatives?

          You hold that god gave me the right to a freedom of thought – while this might be true, the reality seems to be that if I don’t have the “right” thoughts, then he will punish me – or at least, allow me to be punished. To me, this smacks of religious intolerance. If this is the case, then poor Mahatma Ghandi is suffering unspeakably right now – in full view of your god. I’m not sure that I think this very ethical.

          I hope now to respond to your question.
          I’ll simply point out that there is a BIG difference between genocide committed by an atheist in the name of power, and genocide committed by an atheist in the name of atheism. The examples you later bring up: Hitler, Mao and Stalin, all fall under the former – i.e. they are power grabs – Hitler of course, was not attempting to enforce atheism, but to “purify” what he thought was a contamination – outrageous and disgusting, but certainly not to disseminate any atheistic philosophies.
          Stalin murdered religious people, scientists and educators alike – his justification was compliance, not atheism.
          So – I can’t recall many, if any, governments that have engaged in genocide for the SPECIFIC purpose of “weeding out all religion” (this is in contrast to governments engaging in genocide for the specific purpose of “weeding out one religion”, or “weeding out all but one religion”).
          To put a macabre spin on it, I can’t imagine a battle cry along the lines of “In the glory of no-god!”.
          Many, if not all genocide committed by secular or atheistic governments are simply power-grabs. Not thinning out a religious population.
          I’m sure I’ve glossed over some points, and I’m sure there are one or two events that contradict my points – but I think if any, not many.

          As for living up to what I think of myself…
          Well, I certainly don’t think I’m slime, and I certainly don’t think I’m a flagellated amoeba. Humans ARE (and this really is an indisputable fact) evolved via a very long, and very magical and marvellous process. I see US (you too) as the “latest model” of a very, very careful selection process. We are the BEST and latest result from such a process. We understand it very well indeed and it is completely un-refuted. Why would I have a low opinion of such a magical and wonderful process that has produced US – our ability to reason, communicate and manipulate, from such lowly beginnings? how could I have anything other than pure respect and wonder for such a demonstrably effective process?

          As for morality – Like my brain, morality has evolved with humanity. It’s logically flawed to claim that morality was given to us by the christian god, because plenty of other societies that DO NOT have the christian god, have similar, or identical morality. Morality, therefore, MAY be contingent on “religion”, but is not contingent on a “particular” religion. Religion may, or may not be necessary, and it may or may not be sufficient. If you examine the concept behind the “genetic leash”, you can obtain more information about this than I can post here.

          “the logic of darwinism…is a scary thought”.
          On this, I agree. (as does richard dawkins, I might add) – Dawkins’ holds that the concept of “me (and my kids) first” which is pretty much what evolution IS, is indeed objectionable. And this is where the genetic leash kicks in – a society demands input from ALL members in the society. A society that attempts to support each individual at the expense of all the others, is doomed to failure. What this means is that ONLY societies that agree on cooperation will succeed to flourish – this is what we see today – societies that (on the whole) agree to flourish – all the others died long, long ago.

          So – we exist in societies because we think: we reason what is good or bad for our society. Clearly then, a religion is not required in this case, except as a vector for distributing that reasoning. I’ll maintain that we no longer need this vector.

          • ElShaddaiChild says:

            I’m glad that you have an interest in things beyond the realm on human intellect! I think the best part of being a human being is that we are a step above the animals and have the ability to question and ponder the things of the universe!!!

            I see that you use the word “Religion” a lot. I agree we do not need religion, and try not to equate the term with God. They are two totally different concepts.

            When it comes to God, even us Christians don’t know as much as we would like to know. There are a lot of legitimate questions that you are going to have that I admit we will never be able to answer. Sorry πŸ™

            The truth is that if you want to know weather or not God exists, you are going to have to ask Him to reveal Himself to you. That’s it.

            Why tango with the servants when you can waltz with the King.

            So when you get to the point in your heart (and God always looks at the heart) where all you want to know is the truth, just ask Him. And if He is who He says He is, He will show you.

            I can say, that God is very logical. Just look at the earth. As Christians, we believe that God created the heavens and the earth, with His knowledge and Understanding. If you really think about it, that’s a lot of knowledge and understanding!!

            Everything that we have needed or will ever need has been provided on the earth. Food, water, light. If you really just stop and think about the fact that the food that we need to nourish our bodies grows out of the ground from a tiny little seed, that’s amazing.

            And those raw seeds are molecularly inactive until the elements of the water and sunlight are there to sustain it and help it grow.

            Take that a step further and consider the amazing works of architecture and complex machinery that we are able to create. That is done with materials that come from the earth and mathematical skills.

            Math is something that just exists, of course us christians believe that God is the ultimate mathematician and reveals knowledge in HIs own time, but an atheist would agree that math is a fundamental! It’s just something that is and we use letters and numbers to represent it’s concepts in ways that we can understand. We are then able to use that knowledge in this comprehensible form to create technological advancements.

            But when you look at the earth, the solar system, the human body even the smallest bacterium, everything is so mathematically complex and intricately intertwined, that only a logical God (wise beyond anything the human mind can ever or will ever understand) is capable of even conceiving such an idea, let alone bringing it to fruition.

            ***Just a side note, I always thought that if God had a primary language, it would be math because I just feel like you can explain the most complex reasonings with an equation, and if you have the knowledge of all the necessary variables you can always come to some kind of solution****

            I like what you said at the end of your aforementioned statement “So – we exist in societies because we think” reminds me of Decartes “I think therefore I am” but your version would be “Societies think therefore they are.” You know why I like it, It made me think!! LOL!

            I have to agree to disagree with you here! I think living in societies is just a natural structure of life. It’s just the way things are created to be. Even the animals run in herds.

            Two people decide to come together and become a couple, because that’s human nature. That couple can then decide to have children, because that’s nature. They have then created their own little society (or family), that exists within the bigger society. And everyone needs each other, because that’s how we were created to live, in community.

            From the smallest cells to the planets in the orbit of the sun, everything has a particular role and communal function.

            But that’s it for now!! I look forward to any other questions you may present. Maybe you can help push my knowledge and quest for understanding to a greater level!

            Let’s learn together!

            PS
            Just remember that we are christians on here and are totally sold out to Christ. You are on a Christian forum, so for us it always goes back to God and His Word. There will never be any separation of God and logic, because to us He is the epitome of logic.

            Who else can we count on that will never leave us nor forsake us? Surely not men that shout “me and (and my kids) first!”

            I’m so glad that God is not like man!!! LOL!

            But I and I’m sure most on this site have no problem trying to understand where you are coming from because we were all there at one point or another!

          • anonymous-em says:

            Hello ElShaddaiChild!
            Thank you for a VERY interesting post.
            There’s only two things that I’d like to respond to – you made many wonderful and interesting comments!

            “The truth is that if you want to know weather or not God exists, you are going to have to ask Him to reveal Himself to you. That’s it.”
            Well – of course I did. Well I thought I did. It turns out that when I thought I did, I actually wasn’t. I’m told that the reason I didn’t, was because I wasn’t open enough.
            I’m not sure what the real reason is, or if you agree with this being a possible cause, but It makes me very confused, because it seems then, that noone can know from .. for the want of a better expression.. first principals.

            If a person stripped of all religion wants to meet god, they are told to ask him, and he will reveal himself. But god will only reveal himself if that person is open to god, but not just “open”, they need to ALREADY know that the god is there, otherwise they can’t see him. But if they “already” know god is there, then they don’t need to ask – ipso facto, if they don’t know, then they will never see him – I hope I’m clear – but what I’m saying is that this seems to be a “circular” problem – do you agree?

            Then you said this:
            “Why tango with the servants when you can waltz with the King.”
            Well, my answer would be – why not both? you have a much better party, and if the king doesn’t want to touch you because you tangoed with the servants, then … well I hope that he wouldn’t have that kind of objection – it’s not very loving!.
            thanks again ElShaddaiChild, I hope to continue our dialogue.

          • ElShaddaiChild says:

            Hey Em!

            It’s nice to get a glimpse of where you are coming from! And I actually completely understand!

            Oh, how I struggled with so many questions! And actually there was a time, not too long ago when I would have agreed with you! But I must agree to disagree again and here is why…

            You state that:

            “If a person stripped of all religion wants to meet god, they are told to ask him, and he will reveal himself. But god will only reveal himself if that person is open to god”

            This part of the statement agrees with the word of God, and is very true!

            The rest of the statement says:

            “but not just “open”, they need to ALREADY know that the god is there, otherwise they can’t see him. But if they “already” know god is there, then they don’t need to ask – ipso facto, if they don’t know, then they will never see him”

            These are your words and thoughts on the situation and they have nothing to do with the mind of God. Being open is not the same as knowing, just as knowledge is not the same as understanding.

            This is why that statement is incorrect:

            Actually, its easier for a person stripped of religion to see and know God, than a person known to be “religious”. Just look at 75% (and I might be low-balling) of the churches in America and you will see how true it is.

            Even in Jesus’ day it was the religious Pharisees and Sadducees that could not see Him for who he was, but the woman at the well, and the dying thief on the cross saw the truth that was revealed to them. Both of groups (the religious and non-religious) were given the same revelation, and thus had the same knowledge. They knew what Jesus was revealing to them.

            And, according to your statement, the religious had the upper-hand. The Pharisees and the Sadducess did believe in God, in fact, they were waiting for Jesus to come! The only difference between the religious and the non-religious was the “open” heart. Both groups had knowledge, but only one group understood, and it was NOT the religious. An “open” heart definitely has nothing to do with any previous knowledge of God, nor religion!

            There is no “circular” or gray area with God, those are terms that describe our human thought patterns.

            I also want to comment on something you mentioned at the beginning of your statement about being open to God:

            “It turns out that when I thought I did, I actually wasn’t. I’m told that the reason I didn’t, was because I wasn’t open enough.”

            Since I’m a human being, I find this quite disturbing that someone would tell you that you weren’t open enough. Because the Word says all you need is a mustard seed of faith!

            Take what we say with a grain of salt. I cannot stress enough that God is the only one that will give you satisfying answers. Even if the only thing you do is say your piece to God and tell Him how you really feel (not what you think God would want to hear) and leave it there and come back and tango. LOL!

            Of course, it’s great to tango with us servants! We have sharp movements that carry a precise rhythm and we love the dance. Even though sometimes we miss a step or two…or three. Wherever we dance the King is actually in our midst!

            The objection is not that the King doesn’t want to touch you, but that you refuse His offer of a majestic dance in favor of the rigid servant dance. A dance no doubt. But pales in comparison to the flawless, graceful, relaxing, gliding beauty exuded by the loving embrace of the King’s waltz.

            All that have danced with Him will tell you that He leads a better dance by far! πŸ˜€

          • anonymous-em says:

            I’m still confused:

            “These are your words and thoughts on the situation and they have nothing to do with the mind of God. Being open is not the same as knowing, just as knowledge is not the same as understanding.”

            So – we are to “know” that god exists, before we even know what he is?
            Are we permitted to entertain the logically-correct concept that he “might not” exist, or is it necessary to 100% outright reject this logical point, to acheive the end goal?

          • I realize that this is an old post; but if you happen to come back, let me give you this formula:

            Knowledge + Understanding = Wisdom

            You can receive knowledge; but if you don’t understand it, it will be useless to you. The understanding of that knowledge is what gives you wisdom. All wisdom is embodied in the God we believe in. We, as Christians, acknowledge God as the creator of the universe.

            How did He create it? It began as a thought from God the Father. God the Son, spoke those thoughts. God the Holy Spirit acted on those words. Then, the world as we know it, came into existence. This may sound foreign to you, but it sounds perfectly logical to me. That’s because, I have a relationship with God through Jesus Christ, His Son. That is another subject to be explored.

            God loves you right now, even though you do not believe in Him. When He sent His Son to die on the cross for our sins, you and I and everyone else was on His mind. If you really want to know if God exist, get to know His Son, Jesus.

      • Oh my God have mercy on your soul! Wow i never heard of such insistence, defiance, i don’t even know what to call it but you know what, i am NOT judging you in any way, but as a born again Christian, we want salvation for everyone else just as we have for ourselves. We get nothing out of you believing in Jesus as your Savior, only you do. We know the truth and the way, and anyone who is willing to accept God’s free gift and only accept that his Son died for our sins and rose again, will be saved. That is it! There’s no LOGIC, or reasoning, or evidence, or proof, or any other word in the dictionary that you could present that has ANYTHING to do with salvation. NOTHING else. We don’t need proof to believe. That’s FAITH. Believing without seeing. And we have peace, joy, happiness, concern for others, love for others. Along with the burdens each person born into the world carries in life. HOWEVER, we have assurance in Christ and we get past those hurdles. Unlike those without the peace of Jesus, who have all money can buy, all the intelligence and degrees their brains can achieve, but still cannot answer or prove the questions of life. And are still searching for that “peace” and trying to fill a void that cannot be filled with earthly things. Why not accept that obviously God did not/does not want us to know everything or figure everything out? Why is it that just because he left us without answers to every questions our minds wonder, that he must be irrelevant, incorrect, unjust, etc.? Actually, He is a very loving, forgiving, and merciful God who wants each and every one of us to turn to Him. He loves sinners, he hates SIN. Anyone who is truly sorry for their sins, and accepts Jesus, even on their deathbed, will be forgiven and in Heaven with their Savior. Thats all there is to it. Those who reject Him, He will reject , and they will live in absolute torment and hell that is indescribable and unimaginable. People who sin and don’t repent and keep sinning will pay a price! Do you think that mankind should be allowed to do whatever we please to one another and the earth; kill, rape, burn, steal, break, lie, cheat, steal, etc. and not be punished for it? Come on now. Those will be cast into the lake of fire. THAT IS WHAT WE CHRISTIANS BELIEVE. I’m not interested in debate like others might be, but wish you all the best. If you have any curiosity or interest now or at any time in the future, you can look up stories of those who have died and seen heaven and hell and God sent them back to tell us about it. That’s how much He loves us, He even gives us a glimpse of what is in store for us, according to what we choose. What can be better?! Again, wish you the best!

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