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The Bible: the word of God?

Philosophers and rhetoricians, Welcome!

Postby classicalclarinet » Fri Oct 22, 2004 12:17 am

The example in the link is invalid for various reasons, which we can explore if you like.


Sure, go on!
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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 3:00 am

Titus Marius Crispus wrote:The atrocities (in my view) that God committed and/or caused in the Old Testament also contribute to my disbelief in the flawlessness of the Bible. For example, in the book of Numbers, God commands the Israelites to wipe out an entire race of people (the Midianites). When the soldiers come back to Moses, having spared the women and children, Moses scolds them and commands them to kill all the males and non-virgin females. He says to save only the virgin girls for themselves. Omnibenevolent? Merciful?


Your error is to judge these events through the human perspective. This sounds reasonable but it is flawed. We must judge this from God's perspective. So what is God's perspective,? God's perspective is that of the creator of the universe and everything in it. As creator, He owns everything (including us). Therefore, He is justified in any action He deems necessary. When discussing this, we must also take into account God's character. A few attributes of His character are Love, Peace, Mercy but it also includes Justice, Righteousness, Vengence among others.

Since God owns us, He can set the rules. When we break the rules (this is called sin), we are subject to punishment. God tells us in His word that the wages (reward) of sin is death. This may mean both physical and spiritual death. God may choose to show us mercy and allow us time to repent (turn from our sinful ways) or he man choose justice and give us the punishment we deserve. The choice is entirely His and He is completely justified in whatever He chooses.

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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 3:13 am

Titus Marius Crispus wrote:I believe I can explain why one would have faith in the Bible: either brainwashing or exploitation of human weakness.

This does not, to me, seem like a pointless question. If I am wrong, I would suffer for all eternity for it. I argue with people about the question in an effort to be sure I have not misunderstood something or made a vital mistake which would cost me dearly.


I do not believe I was brainwashed. I did not become a Christian until I was 26 and had done some major soul searching. I came to the conclusion that there was something missing in my life and that only God could make me whole. I believe that every non-believer experiences this same situation. Some choose to accept God and some choose to reject Him and try to fill the missing part of their life with other things.

An excellent book to read is "The Case for Christ" by Lee Strobel. He was an investigative reporter who set out to disprove the Bible and Jesus. He was an atheist when he started but he came to a saving faith through his efforts. The book examines all the major questions he had and what the evidence was on both sides. I would recommend this book to anyone interested and say that it will give you a new perspective on some issues.

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Postby Turpissimus » Fri Oct 22, 2004 3:28 am

Your error is to judge these events through the human perspective. This sounds reasonable but it is flawed. We must judge this from God's perspective. So what is God's perspective,? God's perspective is that of the creator of the universe and everything in it. As creator, He owns everything (including us). Therefore, He is justified in any action He deems necessary. When discussing this, we must also take into account God's character. A few attributes of His character are Love, Peace, Mercy but it also includes Justice, Righteousness, Vengence among others.

Since God owns us, He can set the rules. When we break the rules (this is called sin), we are subject to punishment. God tells us in His word that the wages (reward) of sin is death. This may mean both physical and spiritual death. God may choose to show us mercy and allow us time to repent (turn from our sinful ways) or he man choose justice and give us the punishment we deserve. The choice is entirely His and He is completely justified in whatever He chooses.


If mercy and justice are whatever God says they are, aren't the terms essentially meaningless? If no objective standard exists for judging God, how can we tell if he is good or evil?
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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 3:31 am

Emma_85 wrote:Any Christian who believes that the Bible is perfect is just believing to the extreme that his religion is correct I suppose.


Emma, please remember that there is only one God and therefore can only be one religion. Men have created false gods to worship and have intentionally taught false doctrines since the beginning of time. These false religions and denominations are easy to spot by comparing their teachings to the Bible. If they are different than the Bible, they are false.

Also, the last time I checked, evolution is still a theory. That is because not one thing about evolution has every been proven scientifically to be fact.

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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 3:35 am

Turpissimus wrote:If mercy and justice are whatever God says they are, aren't the terms essentially meaningless? If no objective standard exists for judging God, how can we tell if he is good or evil?


What standard could we use for judging God? Also, he is good by definition that is why when Satan rebelled, he was cast out of Heaven. Unrighteousness cannot exit, or even enter, in Heaven. That is why we must be cleansed by the blood of Jesus before we can enter.

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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 3:57 am

Turpissimus wrote:I thought the Bible was meant to be the account of what Jesus said and did. I don't think that the text itself claims that God chose the precise wording or the incidents which were to be related.


The major theme of the Old Testiment was the people looking forward to the first coming of Jesus. Another was to be a history of the Jewish people. A major theme of the New Testiment was of teachings of Jesus while he was here (the four Gospels) and to prepair the world for the His second coming.

The text itself does claim to be God-breathed. The idea here is that of dictation. God is speaking and someone is writing down what He is saying.

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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 4:07 am

copain wrote:Would not words of war and hatred against the occupation and the romans suit more for someone who claims to be the herald of a new time ?


That would simply have gotten him killed by the Romans very quickly.

His teaching were in reference to the Heavenly kingdom to come not and earthly one they were living in.

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Postby classicalclarinet » Fri Oct 22, 2004 4:28 am

These false religions and denominations are easy to spot by comparing their teachings to the Bible. If they are different than the Bible, they are false.


I beleive in a god called Lopres. His teachings are in a book of scrolls called the Periods. I beleive that what he says, everything and all, is factual and unshakable to the very bottom, without end, and is the ultimate truth. Therefore, all of the Bible is absolutely a falsity since the Bible depends on the belief that God is God and no one else. I beleive the same for Lopres also. Therefore nothing is true.

If you beleive the Bible is universally true, then are all men who are not as passionately Christian living under a false sense of belief and are all going to go to Hell?
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Postby classicalclarinet » Fri Oct 22, 2004 4:30 am

WHAT?? I just posted and that last post by Rhuiden is 40 minutes after the post I just posted!! TIME TRAVEL!!!

EDIT: That happened again. :shock:
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Postby Kasper » Fri Oct 22, 2004 4:39 am

Wow Rhuiden, you are no doubt the most pagan christrian I have ever met!

there can be no redemption for sin without the shedding of innocent blood


:shock:

I mean, whatever makes you happy and explains this stuff for you, but this... really man, I'm shocked.

See, I was taught (and still believe) that Jezus died for our sins so that we didn't have to go to hell anymore (Yes I believe no one goes to hell anymore because of that).

Sorry, I'm just very surprised....
“Cum ego verbo utar,” Humpty Dumpty dixit voce contempta, “indicat illud quod optem – nec plus nec minus.”
“Est tamen rogatio” dixit Alice, “an efficere verba tot res indicare possis.”
“Rogatio est, “Humpty Dumpty responsit, “quae fiat magister – id cunctum est.”
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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 4:53 am

Titus Marius Crispus wrote:This belief alarms me also. There are many examples in the Old Testament, that, if taken to be absolute truth, would cause Bad Things to happen (see http://tommyland.sytes.net/drlaura.txt for some examples). Some have told me that they are able to maintain faith in the perfection of the Bible without, for example, stoning to death those who work on the Sabbath, because the New Testament changed all that. They say that Jesus will judge people, so they don't have to.

I can't quite grasp the idea of God changing his mind about what we should and should not do, but that is, of course, on account of my inability to explain things like God's Will with rationalism.


There is actually a very simple explanation of why things changed from the OT to the NT.

First, there can be no redemption for sin without the shedding of innocent blood. This is why, through God's mercy, He set up the system of sacrifices in the OT. So either you paid the price (death) for your sin or a sustitue did. In the OT, God allowed people to use unblemished animals as substitues for themselves. Once Jesus came, He became the substitute. Even greater was the fact that because Jesus was God and perfect, He became the perfect sacrifice. He was able to die once for all. It did not have to be repeated each year as with animal.

So you can see, God did not change his mind, He fullfilled the the law in such a way that it was permanately satisfied. This is how much He loves us.

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Postby classicalclarinet » Fri Oct 22, 2004 5:13 am

there can be no redemption for sin without the shedding of innocent blood


Doesn't seem that revolutionary to me... that is why Jesus died, his innocent blood alleviating everyone's sins.
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Postby chiggles » Fri Oct 22, 2004 5:19 am

Rhuiden wrote:Emma, please remember that there is only one God and therefore can only be one religion.

Understanding that there is one true god, still, how can one say there can be only one religion? The different sects of Christianity, because they believe in the same God and same texts, but with their own dogma set, do they qualify still under the grouping of the same religion?

What about the sects of Christianity that existed until the convening of the Nicene Council? They believed in the same God, but as to the exact nature of Jesus they differed on. And any other sect that believed in texts now apocryphal? And of those with interest in the texts found at Nag Hammadi, and gnosticism? Even the author of John supposes that there are so many things that Jesus did, that if the content of all these adventures he partook of were put to book, the world could not contain them.

Rhuiden wrote:Men have created false gods to worship and have intentionally taught false doctrines since the beginning of time. These false religions and denominations are easy to spot by comparing their teachings to the Bible. If they are different than the Bible, they are false.

What were the reasons for man intentionally creating false doctrines and gods?
If there is a religion whose teachings put merit on the same values as that of the bible, how would this compare? Would it need to have a Son of God to qualify? If yes, where does Judaism lie on this false doctrine meter?
If, in another religion, there exists the prime God, and a number of other gods, but these gods are thought of as nothing more than representations of different aspects of prime God (not worshipped but prayed to in the manner of Saints in Catholicism, for their own specialty). This religion also speaks of God throwing a portion of himself into an avatar and mingling with humans to teach lessons, how would this rest with you?

"These false religions and denominations are easy to spot by comparing their teachings to the Bible"? You admit they are easy to spot, could you pls provide me some comparisons between your Christianity, and another religion? (God and time willing, this is).

Rhuiden wrote:What standard could we use for judging God? Also, he is good by definition that is why when Satan rebelled, he was cast out of Heaven. ...

What standard? I too do not know, but I'd expect Him to be consistent. Can you provide any passages which speak of Satan rebelling, or specifically those of his being cast from heaven?

Rhuiden wrote:... Unrighteousness cannot exit, or even enter, in Heaven.

Satan was in heaven no? Was he created unrighteous, if no how did he become so, and how did this unrighteousness enter into heaven? And afterwards, how did Satan and all the other fallen angels exit, if, as you say "Unrighteousness cannot exit, or even enter, in Heaven."

Rhuiden wrote:An excellent book to read is ...

A great book is Man's Search for Meaning, by Viktor E. Frankl. Psychologist, concentration camp survivor. Inventor of Logotherapy.

Also, the last time I checked, Christianity is still a belief. Not one thing about God in Christianity has every been proven scientifically to be fact.

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Postby classicalclarinet » Fri Oct 22, 2004 5:34 am

Science is just one window to knowledge (that was from PBS's excellent program about theism that aired a while ago). there are other windows such as religion and philosophy.

But I think science is the most objectable window; that, the most people can agree with it, as not all men have faith in what men cannot see, but all men have reason.
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Postby Kasper » Fri Oct 22, 2004 5:36 am

Also, the last time I checked, Christianity is still a belief. Not one thing about God in Christianity has every been proven scientifically to be fact.


As I said at the start of this pointless discussion: you cannot rationally prove an irrational thing, such as faith. Why are you even trying? Bringing all these ancient mythological stories into it as if that will rationally prove things, trying to prove God's character...

Oh well... sorry for this uncalled for intervention. You fully have the right to do this stuff and I should stay out of it, I know. (It's my irrational frustration I cannot rationally control)

Proceed.
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“Est tamen rogatio” dixit Alice, “an efficere verba tot res indicare possis.”
“Rogatio est, “Humpty Dumpty responsit, “quae fiat magister – id cunctum est.”
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Postby chiggles » Fri Oct 22, 2004 5:59 am

Kasper wrote:As I said at the start of this pointless discussion: you cannot rationally prove an irrational thing, such as faith. Why are you even trying? Bringing all these ancient mythological stories into it as if that will rationally prove things, trying to prove God's character...

Kasper, sorry to cause frustration. I was attempting to play off of what Rhuiden said earlier (quoted below). And I do not believe that I'm trying to "rationally prove an irrational thing", but instead am attempting to come to some level of understanding of another's beliefs.

Rhuiden wrote:Also, the last time I checked, evolution is still a theory. That is because not one thing about evolution has every been proven scientifically to be fact.
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Postby Democritus » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:14 am

Rhuiden wrote:Men have created false gods to worship and have intentionally taught false doctrines since the beginning of time. These false religions and denominations are easy to spot by comparing their teachings to the Bible. If they are different than the Bible, they are false.


What would you say if Jesus appeared before you, and told you something that was at odds with the Bible? Who would you believe, Jesus or the Bible?

"I've changed my mind about the end times, Rhuiden. Just forget about what I said in the Apocalypse. I have new plans."

What would you say? "No, Jesus, you can't do that." Would you say that?


Rhuiden wrote:Also, the last time I checked, evolution is still a theory. That is because not one thing about evolution has every been proven scientifically to be fact.


You didn't check hard enough. :) There is evidence of evolution all around us.

Scientists use words like "theory" because, unlike Christian fundamentalists, they publicly acknowledge their own human limitations when it comes to perceiving the truth.

Books can be forged by human hands, but the Earth, Moon and stars cannot be forged. Human beings cannot create life, nor can we change the passage of time or the other laws of physics. These were clearly created by a higher power. The Universe itself is a kind of scripture. Only God could have made it.

When God created life on Earth, He chose evolution to do it. And He does not seek our approval for this act. The only thing we can do is try to understand His work. That is all. Sometimes we succeed in understanding, other times we fail.

If we want, we can disapprove of the Moon. But the Moon will not vanish.
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Postby mingshey » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:45 am

classicalclarinet wrote:
there can be no redemption for sin without the shedding of innocent blood


Doesn't seem that revolutionary to me... that is why Jesus died, his innocent blood alleviating everyone's sins.


Divine sacrifice, eating of god, and resurrection, etc. had been a wide spread myth in the Egypt, Near-East, Greece and Rome. Christianity is one of the branches that was struggling to acquire the hegemony among the similar rivals. See how Marduk and Ishtar got their name in the Bible(The Book of Ishtar, aka. Esther). Or rather, see how Plato(in The Republic) is mentioning that you can get redemption in the Orpheus cult.
Last edited by mingshey on Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:59 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby klewlis » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:52 am

Democritus wrote:What would you say if Jesus appeared before you, and told you something that was at odds with the Bible? Who would you believe, Jesus or the Bible?

"I've changed my mind about the end times, Rhuiden. Just forget about what I said in the Apocalypse. I have new plans."

What would you say? "No, Jesus, you can't do that." Would you say that?


I would question the apparition's identity. How would I know it is Jesus? If he is saying something contradictory to the Bible, he could not be. Paul himself said that if any spirit comes preaching a gospel different from the one given, that spirit is not from God. :)


Scientists use words like "theory" because, unlike Christian fundamentalists, they publicly acknowledge their own human limitations when it comes to perceiving the truth.


I resent this generalization. I am a fundamentalist Christian and am very much aware of my own limitations when it comes to perceiving the truth.

I also believe in evolution. :)
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Postby klewlis » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:54 am

Turpissimus wrote:
If God wrote the Vulgate whether or not directly in Latin God must really suck!


Wasn't it Nietzsche who said that God wrote the worst Greek he had ever read?

' Course, I've never read the Bible in Greek.


Well, we have to understand that most of the authors were Jewish and their first language was Hebrew, not Greek. :)

If I wrote a book in greek it would suck too.
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Postby klewlis » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:58 am

Kasper wrote:Wow Rhuiden, you are no doubt the most pagan christrian I have ever met!

there can be no redemption for sin without the shedding of innocent blood


:shock:

I mean, whatever makes you happy and explains this stuff for you, but this... really man, I'm shocked.

See, I was taught (and still believe) that Jezus died for our sins so that we didn't have to go to hell anymore (Yes I believe no one goes to hell anymore because of that).

Sorry, I'm just very surprised....


I don't think you're being sarcastic here... at first I wasn't sure. :)

Atonement through the blood of an innocent animal goes right back to the very beginning of Judaism (probably further). It is a continuous theme throughout the Bible, leading right up to Jesus. This is why he is called the "Lamb of God".
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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 12:13 pm

Kasper wrote:See, I was taught (and still believe) that Jezus died for our sins so that we didn't have to go to hell anymore (Yes I believe no one goes to hell anymore because of that).


First, let me say that I used the wrong word last night, it was late, please forgive me. I should have said: There can be no remission of (not redemption for) sin without the shedding of blood. This is from Hebrews 9:22. It says: "..all things are cleansed with blood, and without the shedding of blood there is no forgiveness."

You have only been taught half the story. Unfortunately, this is true for many Christians today. It is true that Jesus died for our sins so that we don't have to go to hell but it is not automatically applied to everyone. A person must first ask Jesus to be his Lord and Saviour, then the cleansing blood of Jesus is applied to that person. Those that don't recognize their need to make this request are not saved and will be cast into Hell.

The really sad thing is that so many churches are preaching "feel-good" christianity. They only teach the Love, Mercy, Forgiveness parts of Jesus' message. This is all many want to hear and they flock to these churches. By not teaching they may be giving people a false sense of security. They think that Jesus will not let them go to Hell, They rationalize, "I am a good person. I am not a criminal, I go to church occassionally, I put a dollar in the offering plate last month, and afterall there are many much worse than me". Jesus tells us what will happen to such people on the day of judgement in Matthew 7:21-23.

"Not everyone who says to Me 'Lord, Lord' will enter the kingdom of Heaven, but he who does the will of My Father who is in Heaven, will enter. Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord', did we not prophesy in Your name, and in Your name cast out demons, and in Your name perform many miracles? And then I will declare to them, 'I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness." Mat 7:21-23

So you see, Jesus died "once for all" but He requires something from us. It is not automatically applied, we must ask for it.

I do not understand how you could call me a pagan, this is straight from the Bible.

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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 12:17 pm

klewlis wrote:Atonement through the blood of an innocent animal goes right back to the very beginning of Judaism (probably further). It is a continuous theme throughout the Bible, leading right up to Jesus. This is why he is called the "Lamb of God".


Well said, I wish I could be so well spoken.

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Postby Emma_85 » Fri Oct 22, 2004 1:19 pm

Rhuiden wrote:Emma, please remember that there is only one God and therefore can only be one religion. Men have created false gods to worship and have intentionally taught false doctrines since the beginning of time. These false religions and denominations are easy to spot by comparing their teachings to the Bible. If they are different than the Bible, they are false.

Also, the last time I checked, evolution is still a theory. That is because not one thing about evolution has every been proven scientifically to be fact.

Rhuiden


I will not 'remember' that there is only one God, but that there is no God. That a God or many Gods or anything God-like exists is unproven. How on earth do you know that the Bible is the right book though, couldn't it be the Koran? If you lived in Cairo you'd believe that the Koran was the only proper book and everything else were wrong. You have no real reason to believe the book of your religion to be the only right one.
And as for evolution - just buy a book on it.
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Postby klewlis » Fri Oct 22, 2004 3:16 pm

Emma_85 wrote:You have no real reason to believe the book of your religion to be the only right one.


Don't assume. I have plenty of "real" reasons. Unfortunately, discussion of such is nearly always unfruitful since we are starting from opposite premises. :)
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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 3:44 pm

Emma_85 wrote:I will not 'remember' that there is only one God, but that there is no God. That a God or many Gods or anything God-like exists is unproven. How on earth do you know that the Bible is the right book though, couldn't it be the Koran? If you lived in Cairo you'd believe that the Koran was the only proper book and everything else were wrong. You have no real reason to believe the book of your religion to be the only right one.
And as for evolution - just buy a book on it.


I am sorry that you, and others, feel this way. I have never been able to understand how people can look at the complexity of our world and not see that is was designed by someone or something more advanced and powerful than us. I believe that someone or something is God. The fact that our world exists is proof that there is a God.

As for evolution, I have read many books on it. I have discussed it with many people. I still have not met anyone who can name one fact about evolution that has been proven true. I addition to that, there is always a nagging question about evolution in my mind: Why would a perfect God, who could simply speak something into existence, use such an imperfect means of creating our world? Some try to fit evolution into the Bible using the Gap theory but there is no basis for this.

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Postby Democritus » Fri Oct 22, 2004 4:26 pm

klewlis wrote:
Democritus wrote:What would you say if Jesus appeared before you, and told you something that was at odds with the Bible?


I would question the apparition's identity. How would I know it is Jesus? If he is saying something contradictory to the Bible, he could not be. Paul himself said that if any spirit comes preaching a gospel different from the one given, that spirit is not from God. :)


Fair enough, but that response sidesteps the question. The point of the question is, who is in charge? God, or the Bible?

If one believes that God cannot do anything that contradicts the Bible, then one is laying down the law, for God. Who tells God what to do? Paul the Apostle? What if God wants to do something that contradicts the Bible? Who will prevent Him?

I am a fundamentalist Christian and am very much aware of my own limitations when it comes to perceiving the truth.

I also believe in evolution. :)


What do you say about Genesis? Creation in six days? Which fundamentalist denominations entertain the idea of an ancient Earth, or the descent of humanity from the apes? The Bible is very clear about these points. Yet the Biblical story conflicts with fossil evidence we find in the Earth.
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Postby Democritus » Fri Oct 22, 2004 4:37 pm

Rhuiden wrote:As for evolution, I have read many books on it. I have discussed it with many people. I still have not met anyone who can name one fact about evolution that has been proven true.


The creation story in Genesis was never proven true.

Evolution is not only true, it is openly observable in nature. Most evolution is slow, but some parts of it happen in observable time frames.

Rhuiden wrote:I addition to that, there is always a nagging question about evolution in my mind: Why would a perfect God, who could simply speak something into existence, use such an imperfect means of creating our world?


Well, let's imagine that a perfect God really did choose an imperfect means of creation. Are you going to tell God, "No, you can't do that" ?

God created humans, who are imperfect. So what prevents God from creating evolution? Are you going to prevent God from creating evolution?
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Postby Emma_85 » Fri Oct 22, 2004 5:21 pm

klewlis wrote:
Emma_85 wrote:You have no real reason to believe the book of your religion to be the only right one.


Don't assume. I have plenty of "real" reasons. Unfortunately, discussion of such is nearly always unfruitful since we are starting from opposite premises. :)


Sorry, with 'real' reasons, I was talking of reasons as in 'it has been proven that...' sort of reasons. You may have personal reasons for thinking your religions to be the only correct one, but no objective ones. As I said, if Rhuiden had been living in Cairo at the time of his ‘what’s the point in my life?’-crisis, he would probably not have turned to the Bible, but to the Koran and thought Islam to be the only true religion. He might have had ‘real’ reasons to believe that Islam was the only true religion then too.
I didn't want to offend either you or Rhuiden, even if my words sound harsh. Too me Rhuiden's words sounded harsh and offending though, so I reacted in a similar way.

Rhuiden, why if there was indeed no evolution would God try to trick us humans? I mean, what would be the point of him burying Dino bones for example or of allowing us to breed dogs?

I think I’d better just stop replying, this is not really a philosophical debate and I’m just getting angry and writing angry replies.
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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:07 pm

Democritus wrote:Fair enough, but that response sidesteps the question. The point of the question is, who is in charge? God, or the Bible?

If one believes that God cannot do anything that contradicts the Bible, then one is laying down the law, for God. Who tells God what to do? Paul the Apostle? What if God wants to do something that contradicts the Bible? Who will prevent Him?


The Bible is simply God's word. It is not a question of one being in charge of the other

Democritus wrote:What do you say about Genesis? Creation in six days? Which fundamentalist denominations entertain the idea of an ancient Earth, or the descent of humanity from the apes? The Bible is very clear about these points. Yet the Biblical story conflicts with fossil evidence we find in the Earth.


I believe Creation was in six literal days. I do not know of any "fundamentalist" donomintions that believe these things. If they did, would they not cease to be "fundamentalist"? Also, what fossil evidence are you referring to? No fossil evidence supports evolution. The evidence that has not been proven to be a hoax supports the world-wide flood as described in Genesis.

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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:14 pm

Democritus wrote:Evolution is not only true, it is openly observable in nature. Most evolution is slow, but some parts of it happen in observable time frames.


Name one instance in which we have observed one creature "evolving" into a completely different creature. It has never happened, observed or unobserved.

Democritus wrote:God created humans, who are imperfect.


God created humans in His imange, therefore they were also perfect but He also gave humans free will. At the point that Adam and Eve chose to sin in the garden of eden, they were no longer perfect and hence the need for Jesus to come.

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Postby chiggles » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:15 pm

klewlis wrote:
Turpissimus wrote:
If God wrote the Vulgate whether or not directly in Latin God must really suck!


Wasn't it Nietzsche who said that God wrote the worst Greek he had ever read?

' Course, I've never read the Bible in Greek.


Well, we have to understand that most of the authors were Jewish and their first language was Hebrew, not Greek. :)

If I wrote a book in greek it would suck too.

It may have been in reference to the New Testament.

Rhuiden wrote:I have never been able to understand how people can look at the complexity of our world and not see that is was designed by someone or something more advanced and powerful than us. I believe that someone or something is God. The fact that our world exists is proof that there is a God.

It is hard to deny that the world may have been designed by someone or something more advanced and powerful than us, be he divine watchmaker, unmoved mover. However, in believing so one is not conclusively lead to believe in only the Christian God, or even the god(s) of any religion. Deism is fascinating, it is.

If spontaneously in our bodies a certain organism gained sentience, would it not also eventually come to the conclusion that due to the complexity of the environment it exists in, and the patterns it sees, that there was a maker of everything in sight. Restricted to knowing so much, said organisms would probably come to the conclusion that whichever person they existed in, is god. Based on preference and cultural values, they would then impose their beliefs of what is ideal, onto such maker, in an attempt to relate and better relate to this entity, by prescription. All religions do this, only when one gets to the mystical, esoteric side of religion does god become an ineffable being or thing. I do like gnosticism, and the gnostic demiurge.

Rhuiden wrote:Why would a perfect God, who could simply speak something into existence, use such an imperfect means of creating our world?

Why would a perfect god set a doctrine for his faithful, and then alleviate them of most of this by having his son teach them lessons? What changed in the condition of these persons that God decided to manifest in the Christ?

There are a number of books concerning complexities and patterns in nature, here are some that may be of interest:
On Growth and Form by D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson (most likely of interest to yourself, Rhuiden)
Sync: The Emerging Science of Spontaneous Order by Steven Strogatz
The Geometry of Art and Life by Matila Costiescu Ghyka
The Golden Ratio : The Story of PHI, the World's Most Astonishing Number by Mario Livio
The Self-Made Tapestry: Pattern Formation in Nature by Philip Ball

Rhuiden wrote:The evidence that has not been proven to be a hoax supports the world-wide flood as described in Genesis.

Can you provide a URL to evidence of such a flood? Last I knew, the Jews lived in a flood plain or something of the sort, and that is where the story comes from (if not from Mesopotamian myths).

Lastly Rhuiden, please check your private messages.
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Postby Rhuiden » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:27 pm

Emma_85 wrote:Rhuiden, why if there was indeed no evolution would God try to trick us humans? I mean, what would be the point of him burying Dino bones for example or of allowing us to breed dogs?


God did not try to trick humans. The bones were buried during the world-wide flood in which everything, except those in the ark, was destroyed. How does breeding dogs, or any animal, equate to evolution?

Emma, I appologize if my words sounded harsh. I did intend to offend you or anyone else. My wife is fond of pointing out that I have no tact when it comes to things that I have strong feelings/beliefs about. In the future, I will attempt to make my points without sounding harsh.

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Postby klewlis » Fri Oct 22, 2004 6:53 pm

chiggles wrote:
klewlis wrote:
Turpissimus wrote:
If God wrote the Vulgate whether or not directly in Latin God must really suck!


Wasn't it Nietzsche who said that God wrote the worst Greek he had ever read?

' Course, I've never read the Bible in Greek.


Well, we have to understand that most of the authors were Jewish and their first language was Hebrew, not Greek. :)

If I wrote a book in greek it would suck too.

It may have been in reference to the New Testament.


I assumed that it was. Even in the NT, most authors were Jewish--excepting only Luke and possibly the author of Hebrews.
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Postby klewlis » Fri Oct 22, 2004 7:08 pm

Democritus wrote:
klewlis wrote:
Democritus wrote:What would you say if Jesus appeared before you, and told you something that was at odds with the Bible?


I would question the apparition's identity. How would I know it is Jesus? If he is saying something contradictory to the Bible, he could not be. Paul himself said that if any spirit comes preaching a gospel different from the one given, that spirit is not from God. :)


Fair enough, but that response sidesteps the question. The point of the question is, who is in charge? God, or the Bible?

If one believes that God cannot do anything that contradicts the Bible, then one is laying down the law, for God. Who tells God what to do? Paul the Apostle? What if God wants to do something that contradicts the Bible? Who will prevent Him?


Since the Bible is God's word, it is a reflection of himself. To contradict it would be to contradict his own nature, which is as impossible as it would be for him to sin. :)

I am a fundamentalist Christian and am very much aware of my own limitations when it comes to perceiving the truth.

I also believe in evolution. :)


What do you say about Genesis? Creation in six days? Which fundamentalist denominations entertain the idea of an ancient Earth, or the descent of humanity from the apes? The Bible is very clear about these points. Yet the Biblical story conflicts with fossil evidence we find in the Earth.


Who said anything about denominations? :)
I don't know if there exists a denomination which aligns perfectly to my (or anyone's) beliefs. But that is irrelevant.

The definition of "fundamentalist" seems to differ from region to region. In the US it has a definitely negative connotation. In Canada we're more likely to call ourselves "conservative" or something along those lines. What is important to me is to keep a clear line between me and the label "liberal" Christian, which I am not.

I believe that the Bible is inspired and inerrant, and timeless truth. But I don't believe that our interpretation of it is. Genesis is a prime example. I don't think the author ever meant anyone to take the creation story literally. In fact, that's fairly obvious simply by the fact that he gives us two differing accounts within a few pages of each other. There is much to be said on that, but I will defer to Bruce Waltke's article "The Literary Genre of Genesis, Chapter One" which makes the point better than I can (Crux, December 1991/Vol. XXVII, No.4).

The mistake happened when people started to think of the Bible as a book of science. It is not. It is the story of God's relationship with his people. Anything scientific that may be gleaned from it is a bonus.
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Postby klewlis » Fri Oct 22, 2004 7:19 pm

Emma_85 wrote:You may have personal reasons for thinking your religions to be the only correct one, but no objective ones.


How do you know? :) I don't recall you ever asking us if we had any "objective" reasons.
To me there is great poverty in thinking that empirical evidence is the only way to know something. How then does one explain the many human things that are entirely un-empirical (is that a word?) and subjective, such as love, fear, justice, altruism, etc.?

As I said, if Rhuiden had been living in Cairo at the time of his ‘what’s the point in my life?’-crisis, he would probably not have turned to the Bible, but to the Koran and thought Islam to be the only true religion. He might have had ‘real’ reasons to believe that Islam was the only true religion then too.


Exposure to something of course does increase a person's chances of adherence. However, all of those people, whether Christian or Muslim, will tell you that an all-powerful God is quite capable of transcending those cultural restrictions, and in fact does so frequently. There are countless instances of people growing up in surroundings that are either silent about Christianity or antagonistic towards it, but still manage to convert to Christianity. God is not limited that way. :) And I know many people personally who were NOT raised Christian, and their conversion stories can be surprising and fascinating. So be careful not to overgeneralize.

Rhuiden, why if there was indeed no evolution would God try to trick us humans? I mean, what would be the point of him burying Dino bones for example or of allowing us to breed dogs?


This is one of the main reasons I question the traditional interpretation of Genesis: The God of the Bible is not a god of deception. Leaving fossils aside for a moment, consider even Hubble and the evidence for the Big Bang. That sort of stuff cannot be explained through the flood or other means. With Hubble we can quite literally see back in time millions of years. I do not believe that it is in God's nature to pull off such a grand deception, nor do I see any reason that he would want to.
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Postby copain » Fri Oct 22, 2004 7:27 pm

Rhuiden wrote:A person must first ask Jesus to be his Lord and Saviour, then the cleansing blood of Jesus is applied to that person. Those that don't recognize their need to make this request are not saved and will be cast into Hell.


    If this would really comes true - which I do not believe! - even many christians would go to hell.
    (It would be very cramped then there ! :) )

    But I can remember the story of the "rich youngling" - the one - you know -who want´s to know "Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?" And after Jesus told him his requirement he goes sadly away, because he was not willing to fulfil all the requirement Jesus demanded from him

    But:
    "When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved? But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible"

    Do this word´s of Jesus not contradict your comments and hell then
    will be a far more spacious place ? :wink:


Rhuiden wrote:I believe Creation was in six literal days. I do not know of any "fundamentalist" donomintions that believe these things. If they did, would they not cease to be "fundamentalist"? Also, what fossil evidence are you referring to? No fossil evidence supports evolution. The evidence that has not been proven to be a hoax supports the world-wide flood as described in Genesis.


    It is really a daring idea to think there was no evolution and God has created the world as described in the genesis.
    It may be possible that God would be able to create this world in six day´s if this pleased him, but then for every human it would be more likely clear that there is a creator!
    But God do not want this !
    What, if he uses evolution as a - let me say - tool, to veil his existence ? So evolution has happend as a part of God´s creation !
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Postby Phylax » Sat Oct 23, 2004 1:24 pm

How many books does the Bible comprise?
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Postby Rhuiden » Sat Oct 23, 2004 1:28 pm

copain wrote:If this would really comes true - which I do not believe! - even many christians would go to hell.
(It would be very cramped then there ! :) )


Some years ago, Billy Graham said that 80% of the people sitting on the pews every Sunday (mostly professing Christians) were not actually saved. I don't know where he got the figure but in my experience, I believe he is correct.

copain wrote:But I can remember the story of the "rich youngling" - the one - you know -who want´s to know "Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life?" And after Jesus told him his requirement he goes sadly away, because he was not willing to fulfil all the requirement Jesus demanded from him

But:
"When his disciples heard it, they were exceedingly amazed, saying, Who then can be saved? But Jesus beheld them, and said unto them, With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible"

Do this word´s of Jesus not contradict your comments and hell then
will be a far more spacious place ? :wink:


The passage you quote is quite well known. It is Matthew 19:16-26. It does not contradict my point but enforces it. The context here is of a rich young man who had followed the law of Moses his whole life. He was asking what good work he could do to earn salvation (salvation cannot be earned). Jesus told him to sell all his possessions, give the money to the poor, and follow Him. Had the young man done this, he would have soon recoginzed his need for a saviour, he would have called on Jesus to be that saviour and he would have received the free gift of salvation. The young man was unwilling to turn over everything in his life to the Lord and as a result, did not recognize his need to ask Jesus to be his saviour. No contradiction.

copain wrote:It is really a daring idea to think there was no evolution and God has created the world as described in the genesis.
It may be possible that God would be able to create this world in six day´s if this pleased him, but then for every human it would be more likely clear that there is a creator!
But God do not want this !
What, if he uses evolution as a - let me say - tool, to veil his existence ? So evolution has happend as a part of God´s creation !


I believe it is more daring to believe in evolution. There is no scientific evidence to prove any of it. What purpose would God have in hiding His existence? He created us to have a relationship with us. Also, why would a perfect God use an imperfect means of creation? Yes, if He chose that He could do it, but He would not, it would be contrary to His character.

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