Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Righteousness

This post is to clarify the last post and to answer comment responses given to that post.

God does not wish anyone to do wrong/bad/sinful things. Doing these things harms the person and other people.

We all do these wrong/bad/sinful things. We have all sinned. God takes this seriously, He even equates thinking murderous thoughts as being as bad as doing the deed. Naturally, it’s not as bad for the victim if it wasn’t carried out, but to the person doing the thinking it is harmful to them to have such malice in them.

However, we sin because our nature is sinful and we are bound to that nature by birth since the first sinners sinned because something changed in the very core of humanity and the world when evil was actualized.

Now the way to doing righteous things is to have a righteous nature. But we don’t have a righteous nature in our fallen state, we have a sinful nature. God makes possible for each and every person to have a new nature given as a gift and that gift is Jesus. That new nature is the eternal life of Jesus. This isn’t something bestowed to us from Jesus, this is something Jesus is in His being and when we are in Him we have this new nature too. So from this new nature, righteousness is our being, and when we act according to our new nature righteous good acts are the result.

When a person with this new nature does something sinful they are acting according to a false reality – their old self. It is not who they are anymore, but learning about our new selves is a process that is worked out in time and as we grow in that new reality we grow in external expression of that goodness which is within us.

So it isn’t that God isn’t concerned about our actions. The truth is our actions are a result of our living life from the fallen nature. Our only resource in that situation is to adhere to moral laws of goodness – laws we gain from society, from our conscious, from religion, from culture, etc. But this moral knowledge can point us to the real Answer and are not the Answer in and of themselves. They are a tool to point to Him who can provide a real change in our nature, which will fulfill the law better than any human effort can before redemption.

Paul wrote in Romans that our newfound righteousness does not give us licensee to go on sinning as we please. Quite the contrary, our job as new creations is to make manifest the true reality of our new identity in Christ. We are called to live from that place of righteousness and bear the fruit of such living. This means that others, by watching our lives, ought to see this righteousness that is on the inside flowing forth on the outside.


Thus, what I am speaking of here is very contrary to the idea that God does not care about us not harming ourselves and sinning as we please because He cares very much. So much so that He provided us the ultimate solution to this problem of sin, His own Son.

Also, the reality of heaven isn’t just some place we go to when we die. It is a current reality from which we live as we gain access to the fullness of heaven when we come into God’s Kingdom. Again while it is a reality we have such full access, we are all learning to what that means and how to walk that out in this world.

There is far more available in the Kingdom than finding forgiveness of sins and freedom from our sinful nature. There is a whole new world available that only starts with redemption and salvation. Salvation is not the end of the Christian life, but the beginning.

99 comments:

GCT said...

"This post is to clarify the last post and to answer comment responses given to that post."

This has to be said:

First off, I'm not confused by what you are writing such that I need you to clarify. Secondly, your idea of clarification is to simply restate what you've said before and vomit a whole bunch of Xianese all over the page anyway, so I don't know who you think you're helping. Third, I used to be a Xian, so I'm pretty well versed in what it says.

Fourth, the need for "clarification" is coming from the fact that you are positing contradictory and inconsistent ideas. When I point them out, it's not because you need to simply clarify, it's because you actually hold competing ideas that are inconsistent and you are either not quite with it enough or self-critical enough to actually examine those ideas. You simply cast them out and assume that the fault must lie on my end for your cognitive dissonance.

"God does not wish anyone to do wrong/bad/sinful things. Doing these things harms the person and other people."

OK, so when you say that without god there's no reason not to do whatever the hell we want, will you remember this argument where you argue against yourself? If sin hurts us (and by sin, you're really talking about immorality) then we shouldn't do it, and we have no need to invoke god.

"We all do these wrong/bad/sinful things. We have all sinned."

Can someone go through life without sin? (And, Jesus, being divine, doesn't count.) The answer to that, according to you is, "No." So, we're guilty and deserving of hell simply for being human. Why do you feel that is moral and just?

"God takes this seriously, He even equates thinking murderous thoughts as being as bad as doing the deed."

Actually, he equates anger to murder. But, either way, if god can't discern the difference between thought and action, why is he held as a moral arbiter? Secondly, why is god so concerned with thought crime? Thirdly, it seems that god is not all that concerned about sin since he bases your salvation on whether you can correctly discern his existence as a factual matter.

"However, we sin because our nature is sinful and we are bound to that nature by birth since the first sinners sinned because something changed in the very core of humanity and the world when evil was actualized."

And, is that just or fair? How did it come to be that the first sinners would affect the rest of humanity? Who set up the universe to have that law in it?

GCT said...

"Now the way to doing righteous things is to have a righteous nature."

You're conflating "righteous" with "moral," unless "righteous" simply means being god's friend. Who you are friends with doesn't make you a more or less moral person.

"God makes possible for each and every person to have a new nature given as a gift and that gift is Jesus."

By killing his son, somehow it allows us to be friends with him and live with him after we die. Why the blood sacrifice? Why was it necessary to kill something (his own son) in order convince himself to forgive us for being the way he made us? And, don't you ever defend genocide on the grounds that the Canaanites were sacrificing children to their god when your god sacrifices his own child!

"That new nature is the eternal life of Jesus. This isn’t something bestowed to us from Jesus, this is something Jesus is in His being and when we are in Him we have this new nature too."

Except that Xians aren't more moral than any other group of people on average, so you can continue to say this all you want, but it simply doesn't seem to be true and doesn't hold up to scrutiny.

"When a person with this new nature does something sinful they are acting according to a false reality – their old self."

Post-hoc reasoning and no true scotsman.

"It is not who they are anymore, but learning about our new selves is a process that is worked out in time and as we grow in that new reality we grow in external expression of that goodness which is within us."

There's no correlation between how long someone has been a Xian and how moral they are.

"Our only resource in that situation is to adhere to moral laws of goodness – laws we gain from society, from our conscious, from religion, from culture, etc."

So, let's go back to the burning building, since this is where you've conflated "righteous" with "moral" as I said you had. An atheist runs in and saves someone. Is that a moral act, yes or no? A Xian stands on the sidewalk and watches. Is that a moral act, yes or no? How do we determine what is moral in any situation? By your own words, you've disconnected "morality" and "righteousness" and argued that god is more concerned with "righteousness" than "morality." IOW, god is not concerned with "morality" when it comes to salvation, but "righteousness," and "righteousness" in the sense you are using it is simply being friends with god. Your argument is defeated by your own words - it is self-defeating.

"Paul wrote in Romans that our newfound righteousness does not give us licensee to go on sinning as we please."

Which is inconsistent in regards to god and salvation. But, in a humanistic sense, he's right. Simply because you've found god and become saved doesn't mean that you should stop striving to be moral, but it underscores the divide between morality and salvation.

Karla said...

GCT "Thirdly, it seems that god is not all that concerned about sin since he bases your salvation on whether you can correctly discern his existence as a factual matter."

It is statements like these that make me feel that I am not being very clear and thus I have a need to "clarify." You tell me you understand and yet you don't repeat back what I am saying so I don't see understanding. You say you have been a Christian so you know these things, but this statement above shows you don't. Please explain this, because I have explained repeatedly it isn't a matter of intellectual assent to a series of facts.

Do you know your parents only by facts about them? Or do you know them personally? And are you personally known by them? (rhetorical questions) There is a big difference.

GCT said...

"It is statements like these that make me feel that I am not being very clear and thus I have a need to "clarify.""

What, statements based on your own arguments and the logical conclusions of them?

"You tell me you understand and yet you don't repeat back what I am saying so I don't see understanding."

So, I only understand when I agree with you? You are the one lacking understanding. You don't see how or why your beliefs are inconsistent. I'm pointing it out to you. You refuse to actually engage what I'm saying, instead simply resorting to assuming that I just don't understand what you are saying, instead of maybe you saying things that don't make sense.

"You say you have been a Christian so you know these things, but this statement above shows you don't."

No, it actually shows that I understand what the doctrines you are espousing are really about. I'm no longer beholden to cognitive dissonance.

"Please explain this, because I have explained repeatedly it isn't a matter of intellectual assent to a series of facts."

And, yet, it is. Unless I can believe that god exists, I can't go to heaven. god only acts for those who have faith (believe) and claims that I have the factual knowledge with which to believe. Therefore, I'm being told that the facts are there and I'm in error. This leads me to not be able to attain salvation, and will lead me to hell. It's no better than if after you die god gives you a math exam and says that if you don't pass you go to hell.

"Do you know your parents only by facts about them?"

Do you mean to ask whether I know my parents exist or what attributes I know about them? For the former, it is a factual matter, one that I'm confident enough in because it corresponds to the evidence. The latter is based upon empirical observation as well. Yes, both are based on empirical observation!

"Or do you know them personally?"

I know them as in I've talked to them and have conversations with them and love them. What does this have to do with an absentee god that has no evidence for his existence?

But, all of the ideas that I have about my parents are once again based on empirical observations. What empirical observations do you have about god that you can claim you know are supernatural, actually come from the god that you think you worship, etc? The only honest answer to that is that you don't have any. Yet, your god claims to have given us all evidence and is going to torture us in hell for incorrectly guessing which "evidence" is "evidence" for god. In fact, this is worse than a math exam, because you might actually be able to know the answers to the questions. This is like an exam where it's multiple choice but none of the questions or answers are given to you. You have to blindly choose a letter and hope it's right. And, on top of that, you have a predilection to choose certain letters whether they are right or not.

Karla said...

GCT “What, statements based on your own arguments and the logical conclusions of them?”

No, your statement did not reflect what I was saying.

GCT “So, I only understand when I agree with you?”

No, I don’t expect agreement, I expect or hope that you can respond to the argument I made, not change it to something I didn’t say. When you restate something that is not congruent with what I said then it sounds to me that I need to be clearer or restate my position in other words to help you respond to the actual argument I am making.

GCT “You are the one lacking understanding. You don't see how or why your beliefs are inconsistent. I'm pointing it out to you. You refuse to actually engage what I'm saying, instead simply resorting to assuming that I just don't understand what you are saying, instead of maybe you saying things that don't make sense.”

You stated “it seems that god is not all that concerned about sin since he bases your salvation on whether you can correctly discern his existence as a factual matter."

However, I have written over and over again that God is concerned about sin because sin is harmful to us and to this world. He does not give us license to go on sinning even when we are “saved.” However, that does not mean that morality is the road to salvation, because salvation is only Jesus Christ, Himself. So good deeds are not Jesus, Jesus is Jesus. Jesus because He is Jesus does good things, but we still need Jesus regardless of our moral choices. Secondly, even the devil believes Jesus exists and that the Bible is true, that isn’t enough. It can’t stop at intellectual assent; it isn’t about changing people’s minds, but about them connecting with Jesus. Some people do indeed connect first with Jesus and then figure out all the intellectual stuff.


GCT “No, it actually shows that I understand what the doctrines you are espousing are really about. I'm no longer beholden to cognitive dissonance.”

I disagree.


GCT “And, yet, it is. Unless I can believe that god exists, I can't go to heaven. god only acts for those who have faith (believe) and claims that I have the factual knowledge with which to believe. Therefore, I'm being told that the facts are there and I'm in error. This leads me to not be able to attain salvation, and will lead me to hell. It's no better than if after you die god gives you a math exam and says that if you don't pass you go to hell.”

“Belief” includes the mind, but is not only concerned with the mind, as with about everything in the Bible it involves tangible experience and relationship. It is more than knowing facts about a person or making observations about a person – it’s about knowing them. Haven’t you known a person in your being-in your inner self--and not just with your mind? Haven’t you had relationship with a really good friend or family member where it seems like you are almost a part of who they are and they are almost a part of who you are? I don’t know if you are married, but that’s what marriage is like for me. I’m married to my best friend and I know him in my self in my heart and not just my head. And to qualify, I don’t mean just emotively. This is the best example of what it is like to know God.

When you know Him it’s not just intellectual assent to a system of facts, that’s not what Christianity professes, it’s knowing him like one knows a best friend. Yes, learning facts about a best friend can be helpful in that knowing process, but it doesn’t stop on that surface level of factual knowledge, it goes deeper and becomes more intimate and real.

Karla said...

GCT “What empirical observations do you have about god that you can claim you know are supernatural, actually come from the god that you think you worship, etc?”

Miracles, tangible experience with His presence, the historical evidence of His Resurrection to name a few. However, all of these people can argue against. But what I am advocating, is that there is something more to knowing God than any of these “evidences” 5 year olds and people with no education can experience the reality of God the same as great scientist and geniuses. You can experience God without following the intellectual path or you can pursue truth in its intellectual form and also find God. Truth is both an intellectual and experiential reality. Many apologist keep the discussion on the intellectual plain, but I think that doesn’t do justice the fullness of how we can know God.

GCT said...

"No, your statement did not reflect what I was saying."

It did reflect what you were saying, only the logical conclusion of it. It's not my misunderstanding if you haven't thought through the logical implications of your own theology.

"No, I don’t expect agreement, I expect or hope that you can respond to the argument I made, not change it to something I didn’t say."

If you make a statement and I follow through, even though you didn't physically type it out, it doesn't mean that it's not what you are arguing for. For instance, look at the case I laid out in regards to belief vs. non-belief. You can't simply hand-wave it away, because it is the logical conclusion of your argument.

"However, I have written over and over again that God is concerned about sin because sin is harmful to us and to this world."

But, it doesn't ultimately matter in terms of salvation. That's the part you don't seem to get - it's your personal blind spot (that and you have no assurance that what you are saying is correct). That's the whole point of Xianity is that everyone is bad and it's not by being good but by having the right beliefs that one is saved. Do you not see the moral problems with that?

"However, that does not mean that morality is the road to salvation, because salvation is only Jesus Christ, Himself."

Exactly. Morality is NOT the road to salvation. You're agreeing with me!

"Secondly, even the devil believes Jesus exists and that the Bible is true, that isn’t enough."

And your point? All you are saying is that belief doesn't guarantee you a spot, but you can't get in the door without it. So, what does guarantee you a spot? It's not moral acts or deeds - it's having the right beliefs or being "friends" with god. This is what I've been arguing, that you seem to think you aren't saying, but you plainly are!

"I disagree."

I don't see how you can considering that you are now making my arguments for me.

"“Belief” includes the mind, but is not only concerned with the mind, as with about everything in the Bible it involves tangible experience and relationship. It is more than knowing facts about a person or making observations about a person – it’s about knowing them."

And this matters how to your argument? In fact, it doesn't help you at all. One can not have a relationship with a non-existent being. If I don't believe that god exists, I certainly can't be friends with him.

GCT said...

"Haven’t you known a person in your being-in your inner self--and not just with your mind?"

No, and neither have you. All that we know about a person is based on what we discern with our mind from empirical evidence. There is no magic connection between people that allows us to supernaturally "know" stuff about them that we don't actually know.

"Haven’t you had relationship with a really good friend or family member where it seems like you are almost a part of who they are and they are almost a part of who you are?"

We have close relationships where we know the other person pretty well, yes. We understand patterns (we see them even when they aren't there, as evidenced by the fact that we see shapes in the clouds, etc.), and we impart those to other people. We also personify and tend to impart those things as well. But, wishfully thinking the best about another person doesn't make it so, and it doesn't mean that you have some sort of mystical connection or special "knowledge" that hasn't been gleaned through empirical means.

"When you know Him it’s not just intellectual assent to a system of facts, that’s not what Christianity professes, it’s knowing him like one knows a best friend."

This is simply false. Best friends come around and have chats and do things with you. god does none of these things. Best friends are empirically available, god is not. You are transferring good feelings onto an entity that you create in your mind and call god.

"Yes, learning facts about a best friend can be helpful in that knowing process, but it doesn’t stop on that surface level of factual knowledge, it goes deeper and becomes more intimate and real."

Please tell me how you can know something about someone without having some empirical basis for it.

"Miracles, tangible experience with His presence, the historical evidence of His Resurrection to name a few."

And, if you were being intellectually honest, you would admit that you don't actually know that any of those things are true, supernatural, or even if they are that they came from your god. Besides, there is no historical evidence of the resurrection, your personal feelings are not empirical, and miracles are generally not very good evidence for anything.

"Truth is both an intellectual and experiential reality."

No, it is not. Something doesn't become more true in a cosmic sense simply because you think you've experienced it.

"Many apologist keep the discussion on the intellectual plain, but I think that doesn’t do justice the fullness of how we can know God."

The reason for that is that they at least realize all the stuff you are saying about experiencing god is not at all compelling and ultimately relies on faith. IOW, it's only after you believe that you are having the experience that you believe you are having the experience.

Karla said...

GTC “That's the whole point of Xianity is that everyone is bad and it's not by being good but by having the right beliefs that one is saved. Do you not see the moral problems with that?”

That’s what you see the whole point of Christianity being. I don’t concur. I do see problems with that, and that isn’t what I am advocating. No one is saved by right beliefs. I can believe the Bible is 100% true all day long and it do nothing for me.

The key to Christianity is having Jesus life in you and living from that new reality. It’s that simple, but is not about “right beliefs.” Someone can have this relationship with Jesus and not have right beliefs about Him yet.

GCT “Exactly. Morality is NOT the road to salvation. You're agreeing with me!”

Correct.

GCT “And your point? All you are saying is that belief doesn't guarantee you a spot, but you can't get in the door without it. So, what does guarantee you a spot? It's not moral acts or deeds - it's having the right beliefs or being "friends" with god. This is what I've been arguing, that you seem to think you aren't saying, but you plainly are!”

“Being “friends” with God” is what I am saying rather than the other options you list. Being linked up with Him, being one with Him, having Him in your heart, having relationship with Him, being friends with Him – all are similar ways to say what I am talking about.

And it’s not about having a spot in heaven when we die, it’s about starting a life from heaven now. See next post for explanation of that – but know that that post was not designed for an atheist audience, but a Christian one, but it may be helpful nonetheless.

GCT “One can not have a relationship with a non-existent being. If I don't believe that god exists, I certainly can't be friends with him.”

This is true. But you could encounter Him before you believe He exists and that encounter can cause your belief. For instance, Paul did not believe in Jesus, he was persecuting Christians – even killing them. Then Jesus appeared to Him and spoke to Him and He believed. So intellectual facts didn’t lead him to intellectual belief, but experiencing the reality of Jesus led him to both intellectual belief and then to accepting Jesus into his life.

GCT said...

"That’s what you see the whole point of Christianity being. I don’t concur. I do see problems with that, and that isn’t what I am advocating. No one is saved by right beliefs. I can believe the Bible is 100% true all day long and it do nothing for me."

Sorry, I was imprecise. What you are claiming is that you have to have the right beliefs and be friends with god.

"Correct."

So, in terms of salvation, morality is not a part of it. god doesn't care whether you are moral or not in terms of whether you go to heaven. Again, how can you complain about me misunderstanding you when you are confirming my objections?

"“Being “friends” with God” is what I am saying rather than the other options you list."

Thank you for confirming that my argument is NOT misunderstanding you. Now, care to answer the objection?

"And it’s not about having a spot in heaven when we die, it’s about starting a life from heaven now."

Tell that to the people that god has put in hell. Tell that to the starving child in the street. Tell that to the person who is suffering through Ebola or Dengue Fever right now.

"This is true."

Meaning that once again I was correct and you were wrong to complain about my arguments and my supposed misunderstandings.

"But you could encounter Him before you believe He exists and that encounter can cause your belief."

Well...duh. Yeah, if I encountered something that I didn't believe in, I could then believe in it. This has nothing to do with the price of tea in China however.

"So intellectual facts didn’t lead him to intellectual belief, but experiencing the reality of Jesus led him to both intellectual belief and then to accepting Jesus into his life."

Sigh. You're claiming he had an empirical observation which led to his belief, and then claiming that it's not "intellectual belief" but something else? Are you serious?

Karla said...

GCT “Exactly. Morality is NOT the road to salvation. You're agreeing with me!”

Me "Correct."

GCT "So, in terms of salvation, morality is not a part of it."

No this is a different statement than what I agreed to. Morality is not the road to salvation, but salvation is the road to morality. It is being made good on the inside which gets reflected on the outside.

Salvation, eternal life, Jesus is about more than just doing good things, but it does include good deeds. One is just not saved by the good deeds nor is one's bad deeds counted against their salvation.

Karla said...

I said "And it’s not about having a spot in heaven when we die, it’s about starting a life from heaven now."

GCT said "Tell that to the people that god has put in hell. Tell that to the starving child in the street. Tell that to the person who is suffering through Ebola or Dengue Fever right now."

God hasn't put anyone in hell. People put themselves there by refusing the path of life.

Jesus is the answer to the starving child. Jesus wants me to feed starving children and love them. Jesus cares about those suffering with Ebola and Fevers and cancers and His life can bring healing and life to those people too. Eternal Life in Christ has more do to with helping bring restoration and life in these areas than with where one goes when they die.

GCT said...

"No this is a different statement than what I agreed to. Morality is not the road to salvation, but salvation is the road to morality. It is being made good on the inside which gets reflected on the outside."

So, now you are re-defining morality and conflating it with "righteousness?" So, it's not moral to help someone get out of a burning building unless you are friends with god? Are you really going to argue that?

"Salvation, eternal life, Jesus is about more than just doing good things, but it does include good deeds. One is just not saved by the good deeds nor is one's bad deeds counted against their salvation."

Do you try to contradict yourself in the shortest amount of time you can? If moral actions (morality) don't count for or against one's salvation, then they don't count towards one's salvation at all. You've set up a system whereby god is uninterested in morality in terms of whether you get to go to heaven or not. IOW, ghandi would be rotting in hell, while Hitler (sorry Godwin) is sitting pretty in heaven.

"God hasn't put anyone in hell. People put themselves there by refusing the path of life."

And you know that that is complete BS, but you say it anyway. No one chooses eternal torture. No one. Do you think that I choose not to believe in god? Stop defending the immoral actions of the monster that you call god.

"Jesus is the answer to the starving child."

What can children eat Jesus?

"Jesus wants me to feed starving children and love them."

Yet, children still starve. Having a "relationship" with Jesus doesn't put food in their bellies.

"Jesus cares about those suffering with Ebola and Fevers and cancers and His life can bring healing and life to those people too."

He cares about them? Then why not heal them? Why not take away their suffering? He has the power to do that, but sits idly by. Your god is immoral and your own argument condemn him.

"Eternal Life in Christ has more do to with helping bring restoration and life in these areas than with where one goes when they die."

And yet people die every day in horrible ways, while others suffer every day. Thank you Jesus for caring about us so much that you've lifted nary a finger to help any of those people and will send most of them to hell after they are done suffering here.

Karla said...

GCT "So, now you are re-defining morality and conflating it with "righteousness?" So, it's not moral to help someone get out of a burning building unless you are friends with god? Are you really going to argue that?"

I never said it isn't good to help people or that only Christians can do good things.

I'll respond more later when I have more time.

GCT said...

"I never said it isn't good to help people or that only Christians can do good things."

You stated that "salvation is the road to morality." If morality comes from being saved, then that is exactly what you said. Of course, we both know that's a load. Rushing into a burning building to save someone is moral - regardless of who does it, and that is why your argument is a load as well.

cl said...

Karla,

I don't have much to say on the original post.

"You tell me you understand and yet you don't repeat back what I am saying so I don't see understanding." (Karla to GCT)

This is a common problem with GCT. He rarely ever repeats back what we're saying, and almost always repeats back what he hears, which is why it's near impossible to hit common ground with the guy. For example:

"You tell me you understand and yet you don't repeat back what I am saying so I don't see understanding." (Karla to GCT)

"So, I only understand when I agree with you?" (GCT)

You didn't say or even imply that "[GCT] only understands when [he] agrees with you," yet that's what GCT heard and responded to.

"No, I don’t expect agreement, I expect or hope that you can respond to the argument I made, not change it to something I didn’t say." (Karla, to GCT)

You go girl! Hold that ground.

"When you restate something that is not congruent with what I said then it sounds to me that I need to be clearer or restate my position in other words to help you respond to the actual argument I am making." (Karla to GCT)

or - I know the idea is a quantum leap for him - but perhaps maybe the error is on GCT's end? Karla, it's good, in fact great, that you're always willing to consider that the error might be on your end. However, there are times when you've been more than clear, and GCT simply fails to do the heavy lifting.

I'm sure you noticed, but it appears GCT didn't even stop to consider that maybe he'd misunderstood. Instead of taking your comment as invitation to analyze his own position for weakness, he simply retorts with more of "what he sees." Instead of doing the heavy lifting and checking his position against Scripture, he merely asserts understanding and demands we respect his naked assertion - the same thing he fumes about.

GCT,

"Third, I used to be a Xian, so I'm pretty well versed in what it says."

No ill-will intended, but I'll be blunt here - if you used to be a Christian, I submit you must have been of the ones falling asleep in church all the time, because your Bible exegesis is terrible. For example,

"Yet, your god claims to have given us all evidence and is going to torture us in hell for incorrectly guessing which "evidence" is "evidence" for god."

Nowhere in the Bible does it state Hell is for those who "incorrectly guess which evidence is evidence for God." It's like if I were to just make up a bunch of biological-esque sounding stuff, and call it evolution. You would object, and rightly so. Why you make the same blunders towards scripture as Fundies towards evolution is another question.

Karla said...

GCT "You stated that "salvation is the road to morality." If morality comes from being saved, then that is exactly what you said."

Righteousness comes from God only. A righteous person should be doing good things. This would be a reflection of the righteousness within them.

An unrighteous person can do good things, but those good things are not earning points for righteousness. The person still needs the life which is found only in God to be righteous.

Are you of the opinion, as you seem to be arguing, that doing good things is the end all of life, and if you can do that without God's help than who needs God?

Have you considered that there could be more to life than trying to do good deeds instead of bad ones? And that we can go further than good deeds (not dispense with good deeds) but actually find goodness?

Karla said...

Thanks CL.

GCT, I'm interested in your thoughts on his analysis . . .

GCT said...

"Righteousness comes from God only. A righteous person should be doing good things. This would be a reflection of the righteousness within them."

Stop conflating "righteousness" and morality. If they mean the same thing, then say so. If they don't, then stop moving from one to the other when it suits your argument to conflate them.

You've claimed that righteousness comes from being saved and that morality comes from being saved. Which one is it? Are you claiming both or at least the latter? If so, then my latest arguments hold. If you are only claiming the former, then my previous arguments hold. Just let me know which arguments you can't defeat.

"Are you of the opinion, as you seem to be arguing, that doing good things is the end all of life, and if you can do that without God's help than who needs God?"

I am of the opinion that what is moral is moral (based on objective guidelines) and that being friends with god has nothing to do with it. It's not more moral for a Xian to rush into a burning building than an atheist (I can make the argument that it is more moral and noble for the atheist if you like).

"Have you considered that there could be more to life than trying to do good deeds instead of bad ones?"

I've never said that's all there was to life. There's lots of morally neutral content to life as well.

"And that we can go further than good deeds (not dispense with good deeds) but actually find goodness?"

"Find goodness?" By that, I suppose you mean "Find god," but that's simply nonsense. There are levels of moral development that have been identified (for instance), but your insistence of some physical entity or thing that is "goodness" is simply mistaken. There is no such thing as a "goodness" hiding in a cave somewhere for us to discover and attain.

"GCT, I'm interested in your thoughts on his analysis . . ."

I think it's sophistry at it's best. He's tried very hard (or is incompetent) to make sure to not take in the context of anything I said so that he can complain about my treatment of you instead of following the arguments.

For instance, he completely ignored the context of us arguing about what you had said your beliefs entail in trying to chide me over what is in the Bible (which BTW, the statements that we all have the evidence IS in the Bible, meaning that my analysis would be correct). He also completely ignored the context of your argument and my responses to them and the logical conclusions that can be drawn from your arguments. Let's not forget that he seems to think that verbatim repeating would indicate that I understand what you were saying while I gave you the benefit of the doubt that you would understand that this is not so. (To be fair, I did not give you the benefit of the doubt about agreement equaling understanding, because that really is what you are looking for. You seem to think that you have all the answers and that if I disagree with your answers, it's because you simply didn't explain it right, not that your answers might be lacking.)

So, I took it as an attempt to rile me up and take pot shots. I maintain that I'm not misunderstanding but pointing out the holes and inconsistencies in your arguments, and they are legion. You are conflating terms, which is destroying your argument instead of helping (and no, you don't get to conflate terms in order to answer a challenge, especially when it leads you full circle back to an old challenge).

Karla said...

GCT "Stop conflating "righteousness" and morality."

I'm not. And at this point, I don't know what more to say that hasn't been said already.

GCT said...

What a load of BS. You are lying here, or are incredibly stupid. I've pointed it out to you multiple times now that you are moving between the two words when it suits your purpose. What you need to do right now is straighten out what you mean by each word...that is if you have any integrity and intellectual honesty. I'm not holding my breath.

cl said...

GCT,

"He's tried very hard (or is incompetent) to make sure to not take in the context of anything I said so that he can complain about my treatment of you instead of following the arguments."

Why should I address the arguments if you don't respond? What's the point? Either way, I'll take it from the top, just to demonstrate that I *actually do* have a clue. In this thread, the original words of yours that Karla disagreed with were these:

Thirdly, it seems that god is not all that concerned about sin since he bases your salvation on whether you can correctly discern his existence as a factual matter. (GCT)

I also disagreed here, because although it's possible you do correctly understand the biblical requirements for salvation, the way you articulated your understanding suggests you do not. According to the Bible, you have to believe God exists, that you are a sinner and that faith through Christ can redeem you. That's a whole different ballgame than simply "correctly discerning God's existence as a factual matter," wouldn't you say? So Karla's original claim that you were misunderstanding her seems justified to me. Still, you both have points:

Karla replied that, "..[salvation] isn't a matter of intellectual assent to a series of facts."

You replied that, "..it is. Unless I can believe that god exists, I can't go to heaven."

You're both right in what you mean in your heads, you're just talking past each other, probably because intellectual dialog is challenging enough in person let alone online without inflection, posturing, etc., and not because anybody's being dishonest. When Karla says, "..it isn't a matter of intellectual assent to a series of facts," [what I think] she means is that salvation is more than intellectual assent to a series of facts, more than mere belief in God. I think she may have gotten the belief that you thought salvation was based on and only on whether we can correctly discern God's existence as a factual matter, which was the sole criteria you gave in your delineation. So Karla's response was appropriate considering your original claim she took issue with, which suggested that you thought salvation hinges on and only on whether we can correctly discern God's existence as a factual matter.

Now, it may be that you understand biblical salvation quite well, and just happened to express it hastily. I'm willing to bet you're no dummy GCT, and that you're aware that baptism is one of the requirements along with belief. In a sense, you are correct that there are "right beliefs" one must have in order to attain the salvation Karla describes: according to the Bible, you have to believe God exists, that you are a sinner and that faith through Christ can redeem you. However, your original comment that Karla took issue with didn't convey that you possess this knowledge. So, from what I see, you wrote a hasty statement, Karla responded to it at face value, and disagreement ensued where it need not.

Lastly, what is the import of this particular exchange to the overall metadebate, anyways?? Honestly.

As far as your charges of conflation, again, it seems you guys are talking past each other. It's plain as day from the outside. Yes, I think Karla has used different words at different times - so we can agree there - but no, I don't think she's doing this as part of some nefarious plot to win an argument with you as you claim.

cl said...

"I took it as an attempt to rile me up and take pot shots."

Yes, a large part of my motive in commenting was to point out that I think you're treat Karla like she's inferior. You rarely give her the benefit of the doubt. We hear constant rudeness. It's an attitude that suggests you already know it all, and that you're just here to drag Karla into the light. You assume she's "dishonest" when she could be misunderstanding you, or you could be misunderstanding her. Debate can only go so far when you constantly belittle the other person, don't you think?

No, it wasn't pot shots, just calling what I see, which is you taking pot shots at Karla's intelligence and/or intellectual honesty, and while sometimes cogent mostly negative, scathing and demeaning. If she talked like that to you, I'd harass her, too. It's not about taking sides. Sometimes I come here and agree with you, other times I come here and agree with her, but I know what I see, and I see you repeat certain mistakes that contribute to the poor communication between the two of you. I also see mistakes she makes. We all make them. I really don't understand what motivates you to want to talk to Karla the way you do, or to act like it's ALWAYS some problem with the other person.

Karla said...

GCT, Can we try this again?

Righteousness -- Is the state of being right before the Lord. Being made right -- one could use the word justified -- just as if I never sinned. No spot or blemish upon my being despite any sin actions. All is wiped away and clean. Because God's righteousness -- His being is infused with mine making me clean.


Morality -- Is action based -- doing good versus doing bad. It is being wrapped up in being focused on good versus bad actions. The good actions being moral, the bad being immoral and the neutral being amoral. These actions don't change the state of the person. Sometimes these actions correspond with what is an eternal good or evil and when they do it is good for the person to do what is good for it is healthier for their physical, spiritual, and emotional self to do good that is why it is good. Good stuff is good for you and bad stuff is bad for you. But no matter how accurate our moral compass is with what is truly good we still need to be made good inside by having God's life inside us.


The person needs the life of God to make them Righteous. Morality doesn't make righteousness. Nor does it make one saved from unrighteousness.

Our right standing with God, comes from God's life being in us and nothing else. Then when the God's good life flows in us we learn through a process of (here's another term) sanctification to work out that righteousness on the outside and to live in our actions according to the new "righteousness" within side of us.

cl said...

Good clarification. Makes sense to me.

Anonymous said...

"However, I have written over and over again that God is concerned about sin because sin is harmful to us and to this world. He does not give us license to go on sinning even when we are “saved.” However, that does not mean that morality is the road to salvation, because salvation is only Jesus Christ, Himself. So good deeds are not Jesus, Jesus is Jesus. Jesus because He is Jesus does good things, but we still need Jesus regardless of our moral choices. Secondly, even the devil believes Jesus exists and that the Bible is true, that isn’t enough. It can’t stop at intellectual assent; it isn’t about changing people’s minds, but about them connecting with Jesus. Some people do indeed connect first with Jesus and then figure out all the intellectual stuff."

This has to be the most retarded single paragraph I have read in my life. How a human being with an IQ above that of a lab mouse can look at such drivel and believe that it makes any semblance of rational sense is beyond me.

There is no sense trying to reason with the Christian majority that unfortunately runs this country, you need only to look at our laws, our history and the general stupidity of our nation to realize this.

Karla said...

Sounds like your arguments are breaking down into emotional responses. Do you want to take another try at it or do you want to stop talking about this subject? Attacking my intellect does not address my response.

cl said...

I guess GCT's not interested anymore. Karla, you might wanna check out the most recent post over at my place. It expands on some of these issues and you may find something relevant.

boomSLANG said...

According to the Bible, you have to believe [Yahweh] exists...

Hi,

Try to actually entertain this senario:

What happens if I am unable to believe in such a being?....you know, the very same way that I am unable to believe in "Thetans"(from Scientology), "Moroni"(from Mormonism), "Allah"(from Islam), "Odin"(from Norse Paganism) and many other characters that are associated with a long list of philosophies/belief-systems that either are, or were, claimed to be "Truth"?

You have to admit, to be told that you have to believe something that you don't find believable in the first place puts one in quite a predicament, doesn't it? Of course, I could just lie to my fellow human beings and say that I believe something that I really don't believe, but then "Yahweh", who presumbly knows "my heart", would obviously know that I am being dishonest. Surely, the Creator of the Universe, whoever/whatever he/she/it is, has enough integrity that he/she/it wants genuine believers, not phonies. Am I right in that?

["you have to believe"]that you are a sinner...

If I am unable to believe in biblegod, then it should quickly become apparent that I don't believe in the Christian philosophy, and thus, nor do I believe that I am a "sinner". But let's assume for sake of argument that I'm a "sinner".

Okay, if I am "sinful" by *nature*, then how is it "Just" and "Moral" for me to be held accountable for something that I have zero control over? You wouldn't blame a fish for being "wet", would you? My goodness, I hope not.

Also, I presume no one else can accept "the Lord" on my behalf, right?

Assuming not, then how can someone else commit a "sin" on my behalf, whether its "Original Sin", or any other "sin"? That would be a direct and blantant violation of my "free will". And isn't biblegod a huge advocate of "free will"?

["you have to believe"] that faith through Christ can redeem you.

What do you mean by "faith through Christ"?[emphasis added] Don't you mean "faith *in* Christ"? I ask, because the word "through" implies that this "faith" is given to me by "Christ", himself, in which case, it's at his discretion, in which case, if I don't receive enough "faith", then from a practical standpoint, I shouldn't be culpable for that. 'Just sayin'

Best'

Karla said...

Answering in two comments:

Boom Slang “What happens if I am unable to believe in such a being?....you know, the very same way that I am unable to believe in "Thetans"(from Scientology), "Moroni"(from Mormonism), "Allah"(from Islam), "Odin"(from Norse Paganism) and many other characters that are associated with a long list of philosophies/belief-systems that either are, or were, claimed to be "Truth"? “

If that’s true you have nothing to be concerned about. If it were impossible to have true “belief” in God then that would mean He didn’t exist and all that Christianity teaches isn’t true and you would then be living out real truth – that no such Being exist and no such worldview has merit.

BoomSlang “You have to admit, to be told that you have to believe something that you don't find believable in the first place puts one in quite a predicament, doesn't it? Of course, I could just lie to my fellow human beings and say that I believe something that I really don't believe, but then "Yahweh", who presumbly knows "my heart", would obviously know that I am being dishonest. Surely, the Creator of the Universe, whoever/whatever he/she/it is, has enough integrity that he/she/it wants genuine believers, not phonies. Am I right in that?”

I don’t expect anyone to go against their own heart and mind to accept something as true that does not resonate with them as truth. It’s also not about intellectual assent, thought that happens, it’s about knowing Him for real – you can’t have relationship with someone you only believe things about in the ethereal. There is more to a person than their mental capacity of knowing/believing there is knowledge of experience that goes deeper into the depths of a person.


BoomSlang “If I am unable to believe in biblegod, then it should quickly become apparent that I don't believe in the Christian philosophy, and thus, nor do I believe that I am a "sinner". But let's assume for sake of argument that I'm a "sinner".”

Okay.

Karla said...

Boom Slang “Okay, if I am "sinful" by *nature*, then how is it "Just" and "Moral" for me to be held accountable for something that I have zero control over? You wouldn't blame a fish for being "wet", would you? My goodness, I hope not.”

You are born like a fish out of water. You need the water to sustain yourself and yet we all go through times where we deny that need and think we can live fine on dry land. Of course, a fish would die quickly on dry land, but we have the ability to live at some level without the Living Water that comes from God, we can have it freely, but if we deny our need for Him, we won’t see the Life offered to us because we deny our need and His reality. Our ability to live at some level without Him is a grace given us to help us find the Way. We aren’t condemned upon birth; we are set on a path full of possibility to find Life. Sin has infected the whole world, and the only freedom from it is in Jesus. It’s not a matter of quantity of sin, but we have all been infected by the corruption of sin and it isn’t about the merits of our goodness or lack of goodness, it’s about gaining a new nature and being united with ultimate goodness and righteousness which redeems our nature.

BoomSlang “Also, I presume no one else can accept "the Lord" on my behalf, right?”

Correct.

BoomSlang “Assuming not, then how can someone else commit a "sin" on my behalf, whether its "Original Sin", or any other "sin"? That would be a direct and blantant violation of my "free will". And isn't biblegod a huge advocate of "free will"?”

Actually there is an intriguing discussion over on CL’s blog on this very topic. You should see his post above, if you are interested. But to answer you here, we have all sinned. We have all been separated from God and we all have the same ability to be redeemed. We can’t find goodness on our own, we are created by a Good God and His Goodness is what we need. As soon as Adam and Eve sinned, evil was actualized into this creation and infused it with decay and corruption that created a debt to sin that could only be paid by the Son of God. In the 3rd chapter of Genesis, God already lays out what will happen for the seed of a woman would crush the head of the enemy and conquer evil once and for all. The virgin birth foretold right at the beginning of the way that man would find redemption and the curse of sin reversed and creation restored.

["you have to believe"] that faith through Christ can redeem you.

BoomSlang “What do you mean by "faith through Christ"?[emphasis added] Don't you mean "faith *in* Christ"? I ask, because the word "through" implies that this "faith" is given to me by "Christ", himself, in which case, it's at his discretion, in which case, if I don't receive enough "faith", then from a practical standpoint, I shouldn't be culpable for that. 'Just sayin'”


He does give us the faith and the faith is in Him. He does all the work. He is the substance of things hoped for. He is that substance of faith. He gives us the ability to know Him. Now, I’m not getting Calvinist here. I believe He gives us all the faith to know Him. We may be in a place where we can’t yet see that as true, but He is there waiting for us to accept that reality and aiding us in finding that reality. Many things can cloud that reality, and He is patient with us as we go on that truth journey through life. He is there and He is not silent on the journey, one day you just might look back and realize He’s been there the whole time waiting for when the time was right to reveal himself in a greater measure.

boomSLANG said...

It was stated...

"According to the Bible, you have to believe [Yahweh] exists..."

I inquired..

"What happens if I am unable to believe in such a being?....you know, the very same way that I am unable to believe in 'Thetans'(from Scientology), 'Moroni'(from Mormonism), 'Allah'(from Islam),'Odin'(from Norse Paganism) and many other characters that are associated with a long list of philosophies/belief-systems that either are, or were, claimed to be 'Truth'?"

Karla: If that’s true you have nothing to be concerned about.

Prove it. Show me the exact, verbatim scripture that makes an allowance or exception for those nonbelievers who are unable to believe. Moreover, there are undoubtedly many, many more people just like me, so this raises a question: Where will our "eternal souls" rest, since we have "nothing to be concerned about"? Again, please provide a biblical reference. If you can't, or won't, then I have no reason to believe that the opinion of "Karla" carries anymore weight than those Christians that tell me that I'm going to "Hell".

I don’t expect anyone to go against their own heart and mind to accept something as true that does not resonate with them as truth.

But the bible expects me to go against my own mind, as it makes numerous references to having "faith"("faith can move mountains, etc), and subsequently, so do millions of bible-believing Christians expect me to believe it.

....you can’t have relationship with someone you only believe things about in the ethereal.

I have relationships with dozens and dozens of people, and I don't believe(can't believe) in "souls", "spirits", nor a metaphysical realm, or hereafter.

You are born like a fish out of water. You need the water to sustain yourself and yet we all go through times where we deny that need and think we can live fine on dry land. Of course, a fish would die quickly on dry land, but we have the ability to live at some level without the Living Water that comes from God, we can have it freely, but if we deny our need for Him, we won’t see the Life offered to us because we deny our need and His reality. Our ability to live at some level without Him is a grace given us to help us find the Way. We aren’t condemned upon birth; we are set on a path full of possibility to find Life. Sin has infected the whole world, and the only freedom from it is in Jesus. It’s not a matter of quantity of sin, but we have all been infected by the corruption of sin and it isn’t about the merits of our goodness or lack of goodness, it’s about gaining a new nature and being united with ultimate goodness and righteousness which redeems our nature.

I'm sorry? What? What did that long-winded, colorful apologetic have to do with being born with one nature(that is beyond our control), and being asked, or told, that we need to be of another nature?

In other words, you didn't answer the question at all. How is it "JUST" and "MORAL" to hold people responsible for being "sinful" by nature, when they are *born* with that nature..i.e.they didn't choose it. Please try to refrain from repeating apologetics that have zero meaning to someone who isn't already convinced. It will save us both time.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: Actually there is an intriguing discussion over on CL’s blog on this very topic. You should see his post above, if you are interested. But to answer you here, we have all sinned.

No, thanks. And no, you didn't answer me. You insist, "we all have sinned", but I'm interested in the "why?", and the reason for this according to the bible(and Christians) is that we cannot *avoid* "sin". We cannot simply choose to avoid "sin", because if we could, we'd be as "righteous" as biblegod. That's the whole point. We can't be like biblegod; that's a no-no. We are "fallen", allegedly, because of "Original Sin", which was committed alledgedly by the first two human prototypes, "Adam & Eve". It is because of their "trespass" that we, the entire human race, are inherent "sinners". So, it would only follow that, "we all have sinned"(your words).

So, again, you're not telling me anything new, nor have you answered my question.

Since I didn't make any choices to cause man's "sinful" nature, how is it "Just" and "Moral" to hold me accountable? Why do I presumably have to choose to get myself OUT of a predicament that I didn't get myself into inthe first place. 'Follow? I really don't know how to make it any more clear.

He does give us the faith and the faith is in Him. He does all the work.

Forgive me, am I missing something? If, "He does give us faith", and "does all the work", then why am I culpable for not having enough "faith" to believe something that I don't find believable?

We may be in a place where we can’t yet see that as true, but He is there waiting for us to accept that reality and aiding us in finding that reality.

'Sorry, but I hear this apologetic all the time, "He is waiting for us", and I think it's cop out, both on the part of "God"(if it exists) and on the apologist's part.

Let's get serious---we are talking about a being who omnipresent, right? We are talking about a being who allegedly made numerous PHYSICAL appearances and worked "miracles" before people's eyes just a few thousand years ago, right? We are talking about a supposed unlimited being who is ...what?..."waiting" on limited beings?

Again, totally unbelievable---totally unbelievable that such a being, who BTW, can create a universe at will, would make its own identity to its creation a secondary(and ambiguous) issue.

Karla said...

BoomSlang "Prove it. Show me the exact, verbatim scripture that makes an allowance or exception for those nonbelievers who are unable to believe. Moreover, there are undoubtedly many, many more people just like me, so this raises a question: Where will our "eternal souls" rest, since we have "nothing to be concerned about"? Again, please provide a biblical reference. If you can't, or won't, then I have no reason to believe that the opinion of "Karla" carries anymore weight than those Christians that tell me that I'm going to "Hell"."

I think you misunderstood what I was saying, maybe because I may have misunderstood what you were asking. If it is true that you are unable (ie: it's an impossibility) to believe in Jesus then that means all of Christianity is false and that you are correct there is no evidence which would enable belief. Therefore you would have nothing to worry about.

I wasn't addressing the topic of hell. Really that's the furthest thing from my mind when I am talking about Jesus. I'm thinking about the here and now life with Him and not of Him being fire insurance.

Yes, there is a real place called hell that is eternal separation from God that is a horrible place of death and destruction. There is also a place called heaven that is a place of glorious life. Both are extensions of the present reality of our lives now. A life connected with His Life always knows Life everlasting -- a life without His Life knows only death and more death and destruction.


And because I have some work to do I'll have to converse more later.

Karla said...

Okay, I'm back for the moment.

BoomSlang "I'm sorry? What? What did that long-winded, colorful apologetic have to do with being born with one nature(that is beyond our control), and being asked, or told, that we need to be of another nature?

In other words, you didn't answer the question at all. How is it "JUST" and "MORAL" to hold people responsible for being "sinful" by nature, when they are *born* with that nature..i.e.they didn't choose it. Please try to refrain from repeating apologetics that have zero meaning to someone who isn't already convinced. It will save us both time."

I'm sorry I wasn't trying to be confusing, I was trying to address the question more fully than an apologist would.

No we didn't choose it, but Adam was a representative of the human race and presumably did what any of us would of done in the same situation. Moreover, we all have sinned, (to sin, means to miss the mark -- the mark being perfect goodness found only in God's nature) so we are all unjustified and undeserving based on merit. But God isn't looking for us to earn it, so we are all given the same opportunity to be united with God because of His grace and mercy. The debt of justice for our sins as paid for us and we all can find justification in Christ.

What I was trying to address in my first response is that it is about more than sin. If sin never entered the picture we would still need to be connected to God for righteousness, but that connection would not have ever been severed due to sin. Now it was severed by one man for all men, but just all man became fallen because of the act of one man, so all men can find redemption through the act of one perfect man, Jesus, the Son of God.

Karla said...

BoomSlang "We cannot simply choose to avoid "sin", because if we could, we'd be as "righteous" as biblegod. That's the whole point. We can't be like biblegod; that's a no-no."


We can't avoid sin, because are not full of God's righteousness, but once we are we can avoid sin. We can be righteous like God is righteous when we accept Jesus into our lives. This is why I was talking about natures, we have a nature that is not infused with God, it is fallen and separated from God. But He can and will give us a new nature--His own--He will clothe us in His righteousness. His Spirit will make our spirit come alive.

BoomSlang "We are talking about a being who allegedly made numerous PHYSICAL appearances and worked "miracles" before people's eyes just a few thousand years ago, right?"


Yep, and He still does. I've seen His miracles, I've experienced them too.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: I think you misunderstood what I was saying, maybe because I may have misunderstood what you were asking. If it is true that you are unable (ie: it's an impossibility) to...

Please note that "unable" doesn't mean "impossible". When I say, "unable to believe", it is based on current evidence(or lack thereof). Show me some evidence that the bible is "Truth", then perhaps I can logically *infer* that there's a "God" behind it all.

[If it is true that you are unable] to believe in Jesus then that means all of Christianity is false and that you are correct there is no evidence which would enable belief.

I'm sorry.....but what on earth are you talking about? Are you saying that if I am unable to believe the Christian philosophy, that Christianity, itself, then becomes false?

Let me try this again: Hi, I am a nonbeliever. I am a nonbeliever because I cannot believe the Christian philosophy(as opposed to will not believe it)..i.e..I am unable to believe it if I am to remain intellectually honest.

I want to know what the consequences for my nonbelief will be if Christianity and its bible are true, and I'd like it to be accompanied with scriptural references. You said at one point that I had "nothing to be concerned about".

I wasn't addressing the topic of hell. Really that's the furthest thing from my mind when I am talking about Jesus

Not to be crass--but I really don't care if "Hell" is the furthest thing from your mind, or not. The bible, "God's Word", says there are undesirable consequences for nonbelievers. Christians tell me this, too. I'm basically telling you that out of sight; out of mind won't work in this case. If you are so concerned with "Truth", tell all of it.

A life connected with His Life always knows Life everlasting -- a life without His Life knows only death and more death and destruction.

Yes..'got it. Now, will you actually try to listen to what I'm saying to you? What I'm telling you is that I am UNABLE to have "a life connected with His Life" *because* I am UNABLE to believe that the Christian biblegod has a referent in reality, and that the bible is the "Inspired Word" of any "God".'Follow? I cannot simply "choose" to believe something that I DO NOT BELIEVE. 'Follow?

I want to know how holding me accountable for this is "Just" and "Moral", because to believe would require me to LIE to myself. I want to know how creating(or allowing) a specific place of eternal "death and destruction"(don't forget lake of fire) for nonbelievers demonstrates Jesus' "love". Can you please answer my questions without obfuscating?

boomSLANG said...

Karla: We can't avoid sin, because are not full of God's righteousness, but once we are we can avoid sin

Perhaps it's been a long day for you, or perhaps you're overly tired...I don't know. Nonetheless...you keep missing[or dodging]the point.

Let me be clear: I am NOT concerned with what get's us "off the hook" for being "sinners". Do you understand? Do you? I want to know how asking (or demanding) that I adopt a nature OTHER THAN THE ONE I WAS BORN WITH, is "Just". Again, I did not take part in *any* decision that led to the entire human race being inherently "sinful". 'Follow? So why is my innate character being held against me? Why? Please make it make sense. How can someone "sin" on my behalf?

Me, previously: "We are talking about a being who allegedly made numerous PHYSICAL appearances and worked 'miracles' before people's eyes just a few thousand years ago, right?"

You respond: Yep, and He still does. I've seen His miracles, I've experienced them too.

But isn't interesting how you leave out appearing in physical form. In which case, you cannot verify your fantastic claims that way that "the Twelve" and the more than 500 supposed "eyewitnesses" were given verification. Very revealing, indeed.

Karla said...

BoomSlang "But isn't interesting how you leave out appearing in physical form."

I have read accounts of people who have. I have not encountered Him in that manner.

Karla said...

BoomSlang, I prepared an answer, complete with verses, but I'm going to scratch it and start over.

Jesus = Life

No-Jesus = Death

Sin means literally "to miss the mark" That mark is Jesus.

You are asking why is it just that we are born without Jesus and if we do nothing we will perish without Him.

It is an injustice that we are born without Him. That injustice started with Adam. When he sinned his spirit which had been connected to God went dark. It needed a debt to be paid to that sin for life to be restored to Adam. Adam and Eve with dead spirits beget more of the same. The couldn't beget live spirits, for theirs was dead--evil had become actualized by the actions and all of creation was adversely affected.

But no one has perished without ample opportunity to have life in Christ. Scripture even tells us that Jesus went down to preach to the souls in Hades before He was Resurrected. So even those who had died prior to His coming had the opportunity to find life in Him. C.S. Lewis opines that the afterlife being outside of time, Jesus may very well have visited all those who had come there and would ever go there to give them ample opportunity to encounter His life. There's no way to verify that, but it's possible.

Jesus is the one who brings the Justice to the very unjust situation. He justifies us -- just-as-if-I never sinned. He didn't cause the unjust situation, the actions of man and the entrance of sin corrupted the world causing a grave injustice-- Jesus restores Justice.


Did that address your question better?

Karla said...

BTW, I don't believe God wants you to be intellectually dishonest and say you believe in Him and suppress all your doubts in order to hope for some invisible God to invisibly save you.

What I speak of is far more tangible than that and when you encounter Him you'll know and it won't be a matter of intellectually assenting to something you don't believe. Nor should it be a matter of intellectually assenting to something someone persuaded you to believe.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: I have read accounts of people who have[encountered "Jesus" in physical form]. I have not encountered Him in that manner.

So, you've "read accounts", have you? My goodness, we can read accounts of people who claim to have seen all sorts of extraordinary things.

Tell me something, if you read an account of someone who claims to have seen "Allah", what would you suppose the chances are of that being true, as opposed to it being the misinterpreting of natural events, hallucination, or complete fabrication? I'll wager that you'll chalk it up to one of the latter three senarios. That said, if the "faithful" Muslim can believe so fervently; so confidently as to actually be convinced that they are seeing the object of their "faith", but yet, they can be mistaken/deceived(as you'll likely claim), why should a skeptic like myself believe that this isn't simply the case with a Christian who claims to have seen "Jesus"? Do you suppose it could be confirmation bias on the Christian's part?

Jesus = Life

Unconfirmed/unproven assertion, but bearing it in mind for sake of argument....

No-Jesus = Death

We have confirmation that all living organisms experience "death", but we have zero confirmation that humans experience death because they don't have an invisible man, one "Jesus", residing in their heart. But again, bearing it in mind for sake of argument.....

Sin means literally "to miss the mark" That mark is Jesus.

'Seems really vague and open to interpretation. In fact, I don't remember seeing any such verse in the bible at all. Can you provide the verbatim verse?

You are asking why is it just that we are born without Jesus and if we do nothing we will perish without Him.

NO, I asked no such thing! If we are to have a meaningful discussion, you'll have to refrain from "spinning" my direct and pointed questions to fit you own custom, personalized theology.

You attempt...It is an injustice that we are born without Him. That injustice started with Adam. When he sinned his spirit which had been connected to God went dark.[emphasis added]

a) How did "Adam" know "right" from "wrong"?

b) When you say "he sinned", I'll take that to mean that he made a *DECISION* of his own free will to go against the wishes of this alleged biblegod. Is that correct?

You continue...It needed a debt to be paid to that sin for life to be restored to Adam. Adam and Eve with dead spirits beget more of the same. The couldn't beget live spirits, for theirs was dead--evil had become actualized by the actions and all of creation was adversely affected.

If you answered "yes" to "b", above, then my point is underscored once more, and here is the subsequent question, again:

If the "Original Sin"..i.e..the *DECISION* of one human being(or two), displeased biblegod, and it incurred a "debt"(your word), why am I responsible in paying a "debt" that I DID NOT PLAY ANY ROLE IN, WHATSOEVER, to create???? Karla, that is a DIRECT violation of my, and your, "free will". What has happened, if your account is true, is that someone else "sinned" on our behalf. Adam & Co. decided wrongly, and it is assumed that everyone would decide exactly the same in the same situation. Are you getting this? This spits in the face of "free agency". 'Get it?

boomSLANG said...

Karla: But no one has perished without ample opportunity to have life in Christ.

::sigh::

Here we go again.

You say "ample opportunity", but you dismiss it over and over and over again(quite rudely) when/if the nonbeliever tells you that they are unable to believe on "faith". Why do you willfully seem to block this out?

I beg of you to listen closely:

Karla, the only way I can believe on "faith" that the Christian philosophy is "Truth" and that its biblical figurehead has a referent in reality... is. if. I. lie. to. my. self.

Is my being a phony acceptable to your "God"? Or does it want followers/disciples that believe in its existence genuinely? What is "ample" to one might not be "ample" to another. Yet, certainly "God" knows what is "ample" to each INDIVIDUAL, right?

Scripture even tells us that Jesus went down to preach to the souls in Hades before He was Resurrected.

Okay, perfect---so, "Jesus" actually witnesses for himself what it's like to "perish"..i.e..be incinerated, which only makes him that much more of a sick, demented, abhorent individual in my view, thus, making the whole concept that much more difficult to believe. Yes, Mr. "All-loving" stands by with arms folded as his "children" are being set on fire, as if this was the "ONLY" alternative to "Heaven". It's simply astonishing to me how you can rationalize this stuff.

Jesus is the one who brings the Justice to the very unjust situation. He justifies us -- just-as-if-I never sinned. He didn't cause the unjust situation, the actions of man and the entrance of sin corrupted the world causing a grave injustice-- Jesus restores Justice.[emphasis added]

That "actions" of ONE man(and a possible accomplice), yet, you erroneously use the word "man" collectively, thus, underscoring my point once more.

Did that address your question better?

I think my reponse answers that, but then again, I'd better be thorough: No, absolutely not.

Karla said...

BoomSlang, I am always going to speak as if my worldview is true in a matter of fact way. I am answering your questions from the perspective of my worldview. So when I say Jesus = Life I am saying that as a Christian who sees this as true. When you ask for biblical references and all it appears to me you are looking to know what the Bible or Christian say about a matter. I am merely answering your questions from that perspective. It would be "intellectually dishonest" for me to do otherwise.

Secondly, you wrote "Karla, the only way I can believe on "faith" that the Christian philosophy is "Truth" and that its biblical figurehead has a referent in reality... is. if. I. lie. to. my. self."

That is not the only way. That may be where you are at right now and the way you see it. But you can encounter the living God and know His reality as true and not believe something on unsubstantiated faith that you cannot know to be true.

BoomSlang "Is my being a phony acceptable to your "God"?"

No.


"Or does it want followers/disciples that believe in its existence genuinely?"

Yes genuinely and experientially


"What is "ample" to one might not be "ample" to another."

True.


"Yet, certainly "God" knows what is "ample" to each INDIVIDUAL, right?"

Correct

"Tell me something, if you read an account of someone who claims to have seen "Allah", what would you suppose the chances are of that being true,"

I can't say for sure, but I think Islam doesn't teach that you can have relationship with Allah at all. So I don't think they would even believe in encountering Him. I do know that there are a lot of Muslims that are having dreams and visions of Jesus and are leaving Islam for Jesus without ever having talked to a missionary or read a Bible.


"Do you suppose it could be confirmation bias on the Christian's part?"

Hypothetically, why would Allah appear and tell someone he is Jesus? Also if you have relationship with someone you aren't likely to mistake their identity.

"Karla, that is a DIRECT violation of my, and your, "free will". What has happened, if your account is true, is that someone else "sinned" on our behalf."

As I said, it is an injustice, God didn't create, humanity created it, and God provided the way out to bring justice.

Seriously, I don't want to upset you, I feel you are getting upset, if you want to take a break from the discussion we can do that. I'll be here anytime you want to resume it.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: I am always going to speak as if my worldview is true in a matter of fact way. I am answering your questions from the perspective of my worldview. So when I say Jesus = Life I am saying that as a Christian who sees this as true. When you ask for biblical references and all it appears to me you are looking to know what the Bible or Christian say about a matter. I am merely answering your questions from that perspective. It would be "intellectually dishonest" for me to do otherwise.

Which is precisely why I added...

"...bearing it in mind for sake of argument...."

Previously(and on numerous occasions), I said...

"...the only way I can believe on 'faith' that the Christian philosophy is 'Truth' and that its biblical figurehead has a referent in reality... is. if. I. lie. to. my. self."

Karla responds: That is not the only way. That may be where you are at right now and the way you see it.

I'm sorry, but you have no way of knowing that where I am "right now" won't be where I *always* am. For the time being, "right now", that is the way it is. For you to assume to know my mind, my experiences, including my future experiences, is the height of arrogance. Is this what I can look forward too if become a bible-literalist Christian?...offending others with my religious certainty and arrogance?

But you can encounter the living God and know His reality as true and not believe something on unsubstantiated faith that you cannot know to be true.

Yes, perhaps.... that is, *when/if* I experience what YOU experience, and when I am convinced that I'm not deceiving myself, which we know no human being is above being deceived.

Until then, I must tell you that I resent the very thinly-veiled attempts to shift blame to me, while this supposed Omnipotent, Omnipresent "God" who wants me to "seek" him so badly, gets off scott-free. This, time-and-time again, is what we see from Christians..i.e..the person fails the "faith"; the "faith" never fails the person. WRONG.

Yes genuinely and experientially

Wonderful. Then I await the experiential evidence that will convince me.

...but I think Islam doesn't teach that you can have relationship with Allah at all

I didn't *ask* whether or not that's what Islam teaches. I posed a hypothetical to make a point, but I'm beggining to think it's a waste of my time. Your self-righteousness is simply staggering.

I do know that there are a lot of Muslims that are having dreams and visions of Jesus and are leaving Islam for Jesus without ever having talked to a missionary or read a Bible.

Yes, yes, of course you hear that, in circles of *Christians*, that former Muslims convert to "Christianity". What a great ministry tool, right!? They were once deceived to believe in "Allah", but they couldn't possibly be deceived if they believe in "Jesus"!

Hypothetically, why would Allah appear and tell someone he is Jesus?

If "Allah appeared" and told someone he was "Jesus", then he'd be a liar, just like I'd be a liar if I appeared and told someone I was Elvis Presley.

As I said, it is an injustice, God didn't create, humanity created it, and God provided the way out to bring justice.

I don't believe that you are obtuse. However, I *do* believe that your religious convictions leave you no choice but you to *act* obtuse on occasion. This is one of those times.

One more time, ad nauseam

"Humanity" wasn't in "the Garden", Karla. 'Get it? Only one *man*(and a possible accomplice) made the "wrong" decision that displeased your biblegod. I didn't exercise/employ *MY* free will in that wrongful decision, therefore, it most certainly is not "Just" to hold me culpable, that is, unless you want to redefine "Just" to mean totally unfair.

Karla said...

Boom “I'm sorry, but you have no way of knowing that where I am "right now" won't be where I *always* am. For the time being, "right now", that is the way it is. For you to assume to know my mind, my experiences, including my future experiences, is the height of arrogance. Is this what I can look forward too if become a bible-literalist Christian?...offending others with my religious certainty and arrogance?”

What I said, I meant generally, not you particularly. I should have been clearer. I don’t know what your future holds, but I have hope you will find God.

Boom “"Humanity" wasn't in "the Garden", Karla. 'Get it? Only one *man*(and a possible accomplice) made the "wrong" decision that displeased your biblegod. I didn't exercise/employ *MY* free will in that wrongful decision, therefore, it most certainly is not "Just" to hold me culpable, that is, unless you want to redefine "Just" to mean totally unfair.”


I understood your question and I addressed it to a degree—we can go further into it—and that’s why I directed you to a conversation already on-going on CL’s blog. You have sinned in your own right as have I and everyone else who has ever lived. We are all just as culpable as Adam. Adam set the ball rolling so to speak, and someone needed to stop it – Jesus did so for all of us. We can step into that or not. The choice is ours. I can’t be more clear than that.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: I understood your question and I addressed it to a degree...

No, this is what you've done---you've reworded the same apologetic over and over and over again. I don't consider that "addressing" the issues I take with it, mind you, issues that I've spelled out in great detail.

...we can go further into it—and that’s why I directed you to a conversation already on-going on CL’s blog

I'm not interested in CL's blog. You tout yourself as the "Answer Bearer". I want your answers; not some other Christian's answers.

You have sinned in your own right as have I and everyone else who has ever lived. We are all just as culpable as Adam. Adam set the ball rolling so to speak, and someone needed to stop it[emphasis added]

Yes, Adam "set the ball rolling", as in, he decided of his own free will to go against biblegod's wishes. 'Got it. Biblegod was displeased with this(even though he knew what would happen) 'Got it.

Fastforward a few thousand years, and here I am, "guilty" of a "trespass" that I had no say-so in, whatsoever, and now biblegod mysteriously says I need to be "forgiven" for Adam's trepass, and stranger still, the only way biblegod can forgive me is to have its "Son"(or itself) killed in a Roman execution, and I need to accept this bloody sacrifice, or I end up in "hell". I am to believe an infinitely Intelligent, Omnibenevolent being devised this policy, when it wreaks of having been devised by ancient, ignorant, desert-dwelling nomads.

Imagine----imagine if I proposed that we trace Bonnie & Clyde's family tree and track down their living blood relatives and put them on trial for the crimes of their distant relatives. You would have me committed to a luny-bin! Why? Because you KNOW that that is NOT "Just", THAT's why.

Jesus did so for all of us

Then what's the problem? My "debt" is paid, right? Unless you want to reword your statement to, "Jesus did so for Christians!". At least that would be honest.

Karla said...

Well, I have been part of the discussion at CL's blog that's why I was referring you there because I've been addressing this there. Never mind though about that. It's okay.

Boom "Then what's the problem? My "debt" is paid, right? Unless you want to reword your statement to, "Jesus did so for Christians!". At least that would be honest."

He did it for everyone. We can accept that gift or leave it on the table. Just because a gift has been purchased for you doesn't mean you've accepted it. If I go and buy you and expensive house and give you the address to take possession of it -- it wouldn't do you any good if you never accepted ownership of it.


I'm not sure at this point how to say anything any differently concerning the justice factor. I see it as Jesus has brought justice to something done by man to man to redeem the situation for our good. He didn't owe it to us, but He places such a high value on us that He paid the ultimate price for our redemption. I really can't put it any simpler than that.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: He did it for everyone. We can accept that gift or leave it on the table.

A "gift" is immaterial to the intended recipient until/unless said recipient has said "gift" in their possession. That's just common sense. In other words, I can't receive Jesus' supposed "gift" until/unless I'm a "Christian", at which time, I can then reap the benefits of said "gift". Thus, practically speaking, I cannot reap the benefits of Jesus' supposed "gift" until/unless I'm a "Christian".

So, again, when it's all said and done, Jesus' will have died for Christians, exclusively.

Just because a gift has been purchased for you doesn't mean you've accepted it.

I can't accept it until I see it. Just because someone tells me, "Hey, friend!...I've got a gift for you!!!!", doesn't mean I should care, or even believe it, for that matter. In any case, I can't reap the benefit of any "gift" that's being withheld from me.

If I go and buy you and expensive house and give you the address to take possession of it -- it wouldn't do you any good if you never accepted ownership of it.

'Not that good of an analogy, because if you gift me a house, it isn't legally mine until/unless it's titled in my name. If you title the house in my name, it's legally mine, whether I accept it, or not.

Let me use an analogy of my own to reiterate my point.....

**If I get caught speeding and incur a debt to the court, and if Joe Blow walks in and gives the court a check for the required amount, then my debt is paid whether I "accept" this gesture, or not. I owe the court nothing. 'Make sense?

I'm not sure at this point how to say anything any differently concerning the justice factor.

Perhaps that's because you've exhausted all of your efforts in the way of apologetics. Maybe if you if actually entertained the idea that said apologetics are not reasonable, you might get a different result.

I see it as Jesus has brought justice to something done by man to man to redeem the situation for our good.[emphasis added]

This is a perfect example of what I'm talking about...i.e..the same dishonest, unreasonable apologetic over and over.

Karla, you keep using collective terms for the supposed offender..i.e..."man" did this, or that..and "humanity" did this, or that. I keep trying to point out to you that the "Original Sin", or, the trepass that "got the ball rolling"(your description) wasn't committed by "humanity" or mankind, but by ONE person(and a possible accomplice).

Once more, is it is not "Just" to hold the entire human race responsible for the poor choices of one or two. That is a violation of our free will.

He didn't owe it to us, but He places such a high value on us that He paid the ultimate price for our redemption. I really can't put it any simpler than that.

See my analogy here**, above. If the "price"(debt) is "paid", then it's paid. The end. And it doesn't much get simpler than that. I'm just sorry that you're having a hard time grasping it. Then again, I know that you must reject it in order to keep your "faith" intact. Truly sad.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “A "gift" is immaterial to the intended recipient until/unless said recipient has said "gift" in their possession. That's just common sense. In other words, I can't receive Jesus' supposed "gift" until/unless I'm a "Christian", at which time, I can then reap the benefits of said "gift". Thus, practically speaking, I cannot reap the benefits of Jesus' supposed "gift" until/unless I'm a "Christian". “

You become a Christian by coming to Jesus thereby gaining the gift of eternal life.

BoomSlang “So, again, when it's all said and done, Jesus' will have died for Christians, exclusively. “

I think not all will accept Him, but He still provided the life for all, the choice of gaining that life is up to each person.


BoomSlang “I can't accept it until I see it. Just because someone tells me, "Hey, friend!...I've got a gift for you!!!!", doesn't mean I should care, or even believe it, for that matter. In any case, I can't reap the benefit of any "gift" that's being withheld from me.”

Please understand I don’t think for a moment that you should go “okay, well Karla tells me it’s real so I guess it is and I ought to ignore all my doubts and questions and jump in head first.” I’m not asking you to do this at all.


BoomSlang “Let me use an analogy of my own to reiterate my point.....

**If I get caught speeding and incur a debt to the court, and if Joe Blow walks in and gives the court a check for the required amount, then my debt is paid whether I "accept" this gesture, or not. I owe the court nothing. 'Make sense?”

That is a more accurate example. Except I think when we don’t accept our forgiveness from Jesus we do refute it and live as if we still owe that debt regardless of it being paid for and we live from the reality of not having the freedom of being forgiven. So if we live in contradiction to the reality of that atonement then we don’t benefit from the reality because we don’t live from that reality. We live in the dark despite the light available to us.

I'm not sure at this point how to say anything any differently concerning the justice factor.

BoomSlang “Perhaps that's because you've exhausted all of your efforts in the way of apologetics. Maybe if you if actually entertained the idea that said apologetics are not reasonable, you might get a different result.”

Look I may be very interested in apologetics, but I’m about more than arguments. Please don’t resent my interest in apologetics.

Karla: I see it as Jesus has brought justice to something done by man to man to redeem the situation for our good.[emphasis added]

BoomSlang “This is a perfect example of what I'm talking about...i.e..the same dishonest, unreasonable apologetic over and over.”

I’m sorry you see it that way.

Boom “Karla, you keep using collective terms for the supposed offender..i.e..."man" did this, or that..and "humanity" did this, or that. I keep trying to point out to you that the "Original Sin", or, the trepass that "got the ball rolling"(your description) wasn't committed by "humanity" or mankind, but by ONE person(and a possible accomplice).”

Yes, I do use the term “man” collectively. I know I wasn’t there in the beginning, but I know I have sinned in my own right. And I know that regardless of who sinned first, we need the life of God flowing through us.

Boom “Once more, is it is not "Just" to hold the entire human race responsible for the poor choices of one or two. That is a violation of our free will.”

The whole world can find justice for the injustice caused by sin. God redeemed the injustice, He did not cause.

Boom “ See my analogy here**, above. If the "price"(debt) is "paid", then it's paid. The end. And it doesn't much get simpler than that. I'm just sorry that you're having a hard time grasping it. Then again, I know that you must reject it in order to keep your "faith" intact. Truly sad.”

Life comes from Jesus. That debt it paid, but that payment is applied to your life when your life is in His life.

boomSLANG said...

You become a Christian by coming to Jesus thereby gaining the gift of eternal life.

Yes; thank you. I'm fairly certain that that's what I said previously, in which case, the "gift" is only beneficial to "Christians", in which case, in the end, Jesus' "gift" will have been for "Christians".

If the "gift" were for Atheists, too, then Atheism would not make one ineligible for the "gift", right? It's fairly straight-foreward logic.

I think not all will accept Him, but He still provided the life for all, the choice of gaining that life is up to each person.

No. 1, if "all [would] accept Him", that would render the bible a mistruth because the bible makes clear that *not* all will "accept Him". Again, omniscience cancels out free agency.

No. 2, for some, nonbelief is not a "choice". 'Sad to say, I've pointed this fact out to you numerous times, both here, and on the Atheist & Christian's blog, but you seemingly talk right over me by repeating the same apologetic over and over and over. You may fool yourself and the already-convinced, but you do not fool the rational reader/thinker.

Please understand I don’t think for a moment that you should go “okay, well Karla tells me it’s real so I guess it is and I ought to ignore all my doubts and questions and jump in head first.” I’m not asking you to do this at all.

Perhaps you're not asking me to do this in an overt way, no... yet, if I, the honest doubter, don't "jump in head first" and force myself to adopt your religious philosophy, I am, again, ineligible for the "gift" that presumably saves me from "eternal separation from God"...i.e..roasting in perpetual, agonizing hellfire.

We live in the dark despite the light available to us

There's the arrogance again. Projecting your theology onto others, and subsequently, pretending to know how others live their lives. Astonishing, simply astonishing.

I'm not sure at this point how to say anything any differently concerning the justice factor.

That's honest enough. Notwithstanding, you've not demonstrated how it is "Just" to hold someone responsible for a debt that they didn't incur, themselves. You have not demonstrated how it is "moral" to hold someone responsible for having certain characteristics by nature, in which case, they cannot control them.

Me, previously: “This is a perfect example of what I'm talking about...i.e..the same dishonest, unreasonable apologetic over and over.”

You respond: I’m sorry you see it that way.

You're sorry, but yet, you'll keep repeating the same apologetic over and over rather than entertain the possibility that the biblical policies that you defend are illogical, unjust, and even abhorent in some cases.

Yes, I do use the term “man” collectively. I know I wasn’t there in the beginning, but I know I have sinned in my own right

Yes? and what else? This innate propensity for you to "sin" was started, presumably, by the first, or "Original Sin", right? Right. You are born "guilty" of harboring characteristics that displease your biblegod, but then ordered to be " all better". Total insanity.

Me, previously: “Once more, is it is not 'Just' to hold the entire human race responsible for the poor choices of one or two. That is a violation of our free will.”

You respond: The whole world can find justice for the injustice caused by sin. God redeemed the injustice, He did not cause.

Here, you've (again) simply talked around the issue at hand. That there is a "remedy" or "redeemer" is totally irrelevant to the injustice in the concept of "Original Sin".

Life comes from Jesus. That debt [is] paid, but that payment is applied to your life when your life is in His life.

Oh, okay..so now you've altered your position a bit. The "debt is paid", but *not* "applied", UNTIL...

i.e..conditional.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “If the "gift" were for Atheists, too, then Atheism would not make one ineligible for the "gift", right? It's fairly straight-foreward logic.”

The gift is Jesus who is eternal life. So necessarily to receive the gift you have to receive Jesus. At this point you don’t know that there is a Jesus, much less a need for eternal life. That’s been your honest proclamation, and that’s okay. That can change for you in the future, if you continue to love and seek truth.

Boom “No. 1, if "all [would] accept Him", that would render the bible a mistruth because the bible makes clear that *not* all will "accept Him". Again, omniscience cancels out free agency.”

Knowing is not the same as causing. But that’s another whole discussion. But, yes, not all will come to Him.

Boom “No. 2, for some, nonbelief is not a "choice". 'Sad to say, I've pointed this fact out to you numerous times, both here, and on the Atheist & Christian's blog, but you seemingly talk right over me by repeating the same apologetic over and over and over. You may fool yourself and the already-convinced, but you do not fool the rational reader/thinker.”

I understand, you can’t choose something you don’t know. But you can choose the path of truth, and the Bible says that if you seek truth you will find it. So the truth you know right now might not show at all the truthfulness of Christ to you at this moment, but if you keep to the road of truth you will find Him at the end of it which will then become the beginning of it once again.

I’m not trying to talk over you at all. I’m trying to identify what you really want to know from me and I’m trying to answer you as best I know how to. As I told Cyber, there seems to be a need to define the “what” before we proceed to whether it’s valid or not.

Please understand I don’t think for a moment that you should go “okay, well Karla tells me it’s real so I guess it is and I ought to ignore all my doubts and questions and jump in head first.” I’m not asking you to do this at all.

BoomSlang “Perhaps you're not asking me to do this in an overt way, no... yet, if I, the honest doubter, don't "jump in head first" and force myself to adopt your religious philosophy, I am, again, ineligible for the "gift" that presumably saves me from "eternal separation from God"...i.e..roasting in perpetual, agonizing hellfire.”

No. God isn’t looking for a parrot to repeat meaningless words or beliefs in order to gain a prize. God is looking for all of you and you can’t give all of you if you don’t believe in Him. And that’s okay. There is no need to rush into anything.


Boom “There's the arrogance again. Projecting your theology onto others, and subsequently, pretending to know how others live their lives. Astonishing, simply astonishing. “

I’m speaking from my worldview. Stating it doesn’t make it so, I’m just sharing with you what I see as true. Aren’t you doing this to from your worldview? There’s nothing arrogant in that. I don’t expect you to speak from another worldview other than what you believe to be true.

I'm not sure at this point how to say anything any differently concerning the justice factor.

Boom “That's honest enough. Notwithstanding, you've not demonstrated how it is "Just" to hold someone responsible for a debt that they didn't incur, themselves. You have not demonstrated how it is "moral" to hold someone responsible for having certain characteristics by nature, in which case, they cannot control them.”

I have repeatedly said that sin entering all of humanity was unjust and was caused by man not by God. And God brings justice to the situation.



Asking again, why are you so antagonistic? I’m willing to talk about anything with you to whatever depths you want to discuss it. But why the antagonism?

boomSLANG said...

Karla: The gift is Jesus who is eternal life. So necessarily to receive the gift you have to receive Jesus.

Right, "have to receive"..i.e..the condition. But I wonder, why so much back-n-forth to finally get you to concede this point? In the end, the "gift" is conditional, which is what I've been saying all along. You've been offering up a defense(an apologetic) of this until just now.

At this point you don’t know that there is a Jesus, much less a need for eternal life. That’s been your honest proclamation, and that’s okay.

*Well, it would be "okay", Karla, except that I'm (presumably) going to be incinerated for my honesty. For my honesty? Does that even make sense? Does that sound like the policy of "Perfectly Just" being? Not in my view. Meanwhile, time is running out.

That can change for you in the future, if you continue to love and seek truth.

Once more, I can "love" regardless of whether a particular theology is true, or not. There is no logical reason for me to believe that my ability to "love" is going to increase the chances of me bumping into an invisible, conscious being in my lifetime.

As for seeking "truth", you assume I haven't found it. You assume this, I gather, because you assume that you *have* found it. I have plenty of evidence that you *believe* you've found the Truth, yet, you cannot/have not proffered any objective evidence that you have found it(as Cyberkitten pointed out in another thread).

This is a quagmire for you(and other Theists), not me, because the natural universe is objectively verfiable.

God isn’t looking for a parrot to repeat meaningless words or beliefs in order to gain a prize. God is looking for all of you and you can’t give all of you if you don’t believe in Him. And that’s okay. There is no need to rush into anything.

No need to rush? See my previous statement here*, above.

I’m speaking from my worldview. Stating it doesn’t make it so, I’m just sharing with you what I see as true. Aren’t you doing this to from your worldview? There’s nothing arrogant in that.

I'm not the one telling other human beings that they "live in the dark". If you can't prove people who don't share your worldview "live in the dark"(and you cannot), then perhaps you should think about changing your statement to..."If I didn't have Jesus, I would being living in the dark", instead of, "We live in the dark despite the light available to us."

Karla, to tell your fellow man that they "live in the dark" is flat-out rude, and yes, it comes across as arrogant. Perhaps I should stipulate that you don't mean to come across that way, notwithstanding, the worldview you've adopted has an arrogance about it. If I've offended you, I'm sorry, but on the other hand, you say that you want to understand Atheists, and I'm telling you, as an Atheist, that this is the way your apologetics come across sometimes.

I have repeatedly...

Repeating something that is flawed doesn't make unflawed.

[I have repeatedly] said that sin entering all of humanity was unjust and was caused by man not by God. And God brings justice to the situation.

It was "caused" by ONE man(and a possible accomplice).i.e.."Adam & Eve", who, BTW, didn't have a frame of reference for "right" and "wrong".

Any "Judge" who deems people other than the offenders "guilty", is not bringing "justice". Holding people responsible for the crimes of others is the antithesis of "Justice", and anyone who employs such a policy should be denounced, even "God".

boomSLANG said...

Karla: Asking again, why are you so antagonistic? I’m willing to talk about anything with you to whatever depths you want to discuss it. But why the antagonism?

If you've asked me this before today, I'm unaware of it. So please accept my apology if I overlooked it.

As for antagonism, if you would, please explain the difference between someone who simply disagrees with you and who is unconvinced by your apologetics.. and someone who disagrees with you, but who is also "antogonistic".

Karla said...

BoomSlang “Right, "have to receive"..i.e..the condition. But I wonder, why so much back-n-forth to finally get you to concede this point? In the end, the "gift" is conditional, which is what I've been saying all along. You've been offering up a defense(an apologetic) of this until just now.”

Yes the condition for eternal life is Jesus. I thought I was saying that all along, I apologize for not being clear.

At this point you don’t know that there is a Jesus, much less a need for eternal life. That’s been your honest proclamation, and that’s okay.

BoomSlang “*Well, it would be "okay", Karla, except that I'm (presumably) going to be incinerated for my honesty. For my honesty? Does that even make sense? Does that sound like the policy of "Perfectly Just" being? Not in my view. Meanwhile, time is running out.”

What I am hearing is you saying you want life without having the source of life. And that you are upset that God would make a condition of having the source of life to have life.


BoomSlang “Once more, I can "love" regardless of whether a particular theology is true, or not. There is no logical reason for me to believe that my ability to "love" is going to increase the chances of me bumping into an invisible, conscious being in my lifetime.”

In my view, you can love because you were created in the image of God who is love, but if you want that love to be pure and complete you would need to be tapped into the ultimate source of that love.

BoomSlang “As for seeking "truth", you assume I haven't found it. You assume this, I gather, because you assume that you *have* found it. I have plenty of evidence that you *believe* you've found the Truth, yet, you cannot/have not proffered any objective evidence that you have found it(as Cyberkitten pointed out in another thread). “

I assume no one knows all truth fully and that we are all growing in knowledge and presumably in wisdom and that everyone who seeks truth is in a seeking process and no one has arrived, including me. I do believe I’ve found the source of Truth, the Being of Truth, but I certainly don’t presume to know all Truth or truth.

BoomSlang “This is a quagmire for you(and other Theists), not me, because the natural universe is objectively verfiable.”

But not it’s cause.

BoomSlang “Karla, to tell your fellow man that they "live in the dark" is flat-out rude, and yes, it comes across as arrogant. Perhaps I should stipulate that you don't mean to come across that way, notwithstanding, the worldview you've adopted has an arrogance about it. If I've offended you, I'm sorry, but on the other hand, you say that you want to understand Atheists, and I'm telling you, as an Atheist, that this is the way your apologetics come across sometimes.”

You haven’t offended me. I’m just think it is easier to talk about things without taking it personally. I wanted to be sure I wasn’t offending you. Please tell me further why my worldview “has an arrogance about it.” I’d like to examine that assertion further.


BoomSlang “It was "caused" by ONE man(and a possible accomplice).i.e.."Adam & Eve", who, BTW, didn't have a frame of reference for "right" and "wrong".”

Oh, they did have a frame of reference. They knew God so they would have known what is right and wrong, they would not have yet experienced “wrong” but they would know intellectually that it was wrong.

BoomSlang “Any "Judge" who deems people other than the offenders "guilty", is not bringing "justice". Holding people responsible for the crimes of others is the antithesis of "Justice", and anyone who employs such a policy should be denounced, even "God".”

But, the way I see it, we are guilty of sin in our own right.

Karla said...

Boom Slang "If you've asked me this before today, I'm unaware of it. So please accept my apology if I overlooked it."

No problem.

BoomSlang "As for antagonism, if you would, please explain the difference between someone who simply disagrees with you and who is unconvinced by your apologetics.. and someone who disagrees with you, but who is also "antogonistic"."

I don't mind any disagreement. Calling me "arrogant" seems rather antagonistic though. You seem to use sarcasm a lot too. Maybe I'm hearing a tone that isn't there and it's just your style of argumentation. It's not that I'm offended, I just think we can discuss things better if we don't let emotions get in the way, but I could be perceiving a tone that isn't there.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: Yes the condition for eternal life is Jesus. I thought I was saying that all along, I apologize for not being clear.

No worries now that we have your full admission that Jesus' "love" is conditional; the "gift" is conditional. Most Christians I encounter won't concede this.

What I am hearing is you saying you want life without having the source of life.

It's not about what I "want". I'm here; I already have life. If I'm presented with evidence that I cannot deny, or "evidence" that won't make any other religion "true", I will reconsider my position about the existence of "Yahweh".

[What I am hearing is] that you are upset that God would make a condition of having the source of life to have life.

No, you've heard wrong. I'm saying, I cannot respect/worship a "God" whose "love" is based upon conditions(which we've already established to be true). And this is even if I am fully convinced such a being exists. Again, it's about honesty.

In my view, you can love because you were created in the image of God who is love, but if you want that love to be pure and complete you would need to be tapped into the ultimate source of that love.

I have to ask a question: Do you hear yourself? Do you? You are telling me that the love that I have for my friends and family is impure and incomplete. Again, to tell another human being such a thing, is smug; it is pompous; it is self-rightous; it is rude; it is judgmental, not to mention, untrue. If this is what having the "Holy Spirit" does to people, no thanks. My second question is, assuming biblegod sees these conversations where believers become a total turn-off to nonbelievers, why doesn't "He" do something about it?

I assume no one knows all truth fully and that we are all growing in knowledge and presumably in wisdom and that everyone who seeks truth is in a seeking process and no one has arrived, including me. I do believe I’ve found the source of Truth, the Being of Truth, but I certainly don’t presume to know all Truth or truth.

Yes, but you know enough "Truth" to have evidentally obtained a license to tell other human beings that their love is impure and incomplete.

But not it’s cause.

If really complex things require a "cause", then surely "God" requires one. If "God" is self-existing, then who's to say that the building blocks of a Universe haven't always existed?

Bottom line: No one was there at the supposed "first cause", therefore, the only *honest* answer is "I don't know".

You haven’t offended me. I’m just think it is easier to talk about things without taking it personally.

It's hard to not take it personally when a stranger tells me that the love I have for my family, friends, signifigant other, etc., is incomplete/impure.

I wanted to be sure I wasn’t offending you. Please tell me further why my worldview “has an arrogance about it.” I’d like to examine that assertion further.

Simple: Because it claims to have a monopoly on "Truth". All those who believe in Christianity are "right", and therefore deserving of a life of eternal bliss, and all those who don't believe are deserving of a life of eternal torment. That about covers it, in a nutshell.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: Oh, [Adam and Eve] did have a frame of reference. They knew God so they would have known what is right and wrong, they would not have yet experienced “wrong” but they would know intellectually that it was wrong.

They "knew God", who is purely "Good". They had not "sinned" yet, thus, they didn't know "evil"(wrong), yet.

They didn't know what "wrong" was, and therefore, had no frame of reference, just as I said.

But, the way I see it, we are guilty of sin in our own right.

We're going in circles.

Try to grasp what I'm saying: If we are "guilty of sin"(in our own right), it is because we are inherently "sinful". We cannot avoid "sin", entirely, by simply choosing to avoid it. Thus, we are being held responsible for. something. we. have. no. control. over. To judge someone "guilty"(or to tell them they own a "debt") for something they have no control over is UNjust.

*I implore you to please not come back and say something about a "redeemer", or a "gift", because that is irrelevant to the charge.

I don't mind any disagreement. Calling me "arrogant" seems rather antagonistic though.

I have since clarified that it's your belief that exudes arrogance, and also, I've since concluded that you cannot separate your belief from who you are, so it comes out as you being arrogant. Sadly, this is the dissonance created when compassionate people cannot separate an abhorant belief from themselves.

You seem to use sarcasm a lot too.

Yeah, I do tend to use it when I feel that people are not listening. I guess the difference is, it has nothing to do with my nonbelief in god.

Maybe I'm hearing a tone that isn't there and it's just your style of argumentation.

Not to worry, I honestly feel I won't last much longer here, but for the record, it's not because your apologetics have defeated me. It's the inevitable stalemate seen when reason and faith, or in your case, religious certainty, come together. When one is "certain" there's no need for "faith".

Karla said...

Karla: Yes the condition for eternal life is Jesus. I thought I was saying that all along, I apologize for not being clear.

BoomSlang “No worries now that we have your full admission that Jesus' "love" is conditional; the "gift" is conditional. Most Christians I encounter won't concede this.”

I did not say His love was conditional. I said eternal life is Him so He would be what you need for eternal life. He is love and He is the way to love. So He is the condition for Himself. How is that saying His love is conditional? Unrequitted love is no less unconditional then love that is returned, but the recipient is much more enhanced if they are a part of the relationship rather than loved from afar.

What I am hearing is you saying you want life without having the source of life.

BoomSlang “It's not about what I "want". I'm here; I already have life. If I'm presented with evidence that I cannot deny, or "evidence" that won't make any other religion "true", I will reconsider my position about the existence of "Yahweh".”

You have life in this realm on earth. There is more life, a higher quality of life that I am speaking about. One thing that I am curious about is the evidence for atheism or naturalism. I spend a lot of time talking about why I believe what I believe, I would like to hear more about the evidence of your position without the context of the absence of my position.


BoomSlang “No, you've heard wrong. I'm saying, I cannot respect/worship a "God" whose "love" is based upon conditions(which we've already established to be true). And this is even if I am fully convinced such a being exists. Again, it's about honesty.”

Okay. See my response above about “conditions.”

In my view, you can love because you were created in the image of God who is love, but if you want that love to be pure and complete you would need to be tapped into the ultimate source of that love.

BoomSlang “I have to ask a question: Do you hear yourself? Do you? You are telling me that the love that I have for my friends and family is impure and incomplete.”

No I’m saying there is more to love than that kind of love. In English there is only one word for love, but in Greek there are four. Greek is not a superior language, my point is that there are different distinctions of love, and Agape the love of God is one of them.

Boom “ Again, to tell another human being such a thing, is smug; it is pompous; it is self-rightous; it is rude; it is judgmental, not to mention, untrue. If this is what having the "Holy Spirit" does to people, no thanks. My second question is, assuming biblegod sees these conversations where believers become a total turn-off to nonbelievers, why doesn't "He" do something about it?”

I wasn’t saying you don’t really love your family or friends. I’m saying that there is a God-love we can tap into that is greater and different than any kind of earthly love. We are all made in His image, whether we know Him or not, so we all have a great capacity to love already.


BoomSlang “Yes, but you know enough "Truth" to have evidentally obtained a license to tell other human beings that their love is impure and incomplete.”

Not what I was saying.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “Not to worry, I honestly feel I won't last much longer here, but for the record, it's not because your apologetics have defeated me. It's the inevitable stalemate seen when reason and faith, or in your case, religious certainty, come together. When one is "certain" there's no need for "faith".”

I wish you wouldn’t peg me so soon. I also don’t see faith as “believing in what you can’t know” but as “substance of belief in something real.” I see it like trust which I think is etymologically where we get the word faith.

boomSLANG said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
boomSLANG said...

Karla: One thing that I am curious about is the evidence for atheism or naturalism. I spend a lot of time talking about why I believe what I believe, I would like to hear more about the evidence of your position without the context of the absence of my position.

The evidence for Naturalism is nature. Secondly, you only show me(and probably other Atheist guests) that you do not listen, since you are asking for "evidence for Atheism".

Karla, I don't believe in "God"/gods. The evidence that I don't believe in such things is that I'm TELLING YOU that I don't believe in such things. Please try to understand that "Atheism" is a response to Theism; it is *not* a proclaimation that "Gods don't exist!" You are the one claiming that there is more to *nature* than nature, thus, the onus of proving this is upon you. It is not the Atheist's burden to disprove the Theist's claims.

...I’m saying there is more to love than that kind of love.

To say one person's idea of love is "not complete" is to say it's incomplete, or lacking in some way. Again, I kind of resent that implication. Perhaps you should come up with a better, less offensive apologetic?

In English there is only one word for love, but in Greek there are four. Greek is not a superior language, my point is that there are different distinctions of love, and Agape the love of God is one of them.

I've given a refutation of "Agape love" on the A & C blog. I'm not going over it again here, except to say that "love" based on conditions is not the "Highest form of Love". Love me....OR BURN! is not "love". Throwing all of your "sins" on the back of an innocent man is not "Love". I don't care what language it's derived from.

I also don’t see faith as “believing in what you can’t know” but as “substance of belief in something real.” I see it like trust which I think is etymologically where we get the word faith.

We've been over this before, too. If I'm not mistaken, you employed the "rising sun" apologetic on another blog, which I refuted. Again, "trust" is built upon a proven, verifiable track-record. Conversely, "faith", in a religious context, is not.

You cannot test, measure, or make predictions on "God" like you can test, measure, and make predictions on the "sun" appearing in the sky.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: Yes the condition for eternal life is Jesus. I thought I was saying that all along, I apologize for not being clear.

What you've been saying all along is that this alleged "gift" is for everyone, and as I've pointed out, it is not for everyone. Atheists and other nonchristians do not receive the "gift"; only Christians receive the "gift".

Conclusion: The "gift" is most certainly conditional; Jesus' acceptance is therefore conditional. But for some strange reason, you now allude to the notion that Jesus' "love" is somehow not conditional....

Karla: I did not say His love was conditional.

You didn't have to "say" it; the implication is there all throughout this conversation.

It's simple: You've already conceded that Jesus' "gift" is conditional. Remember? Just scroll up a bit and review your own words if you must.

Now, isn't this supposed "gift" supposed to be a demonstration of Jesus' self-sacrificing "love" for us?("Agape love"). Or are you suggesting that as Jesus stands by and watches all nonchristians roast away in "Hell", that he still "loves" them?

If you answer "yes" to that, then I will gladly concede that Jesus' love is unconditional. Of course, then we're working with really bizarre and twisted definition of "love", one that I personally would denounce and want no part of, even if I was convinced it was all true.

Karla, how is it a demonstration of "love" to watch human beings being tortured in horrific agony, *especially*, when/if you had the power to come up with a different, more humane alternative if you really, really wanted to?

Karla: I said eternal life is Him so He would be what you need for eternal life. He is love and He is the way to love. So He is the condition for Himself. How is that saying His love is conditional?

He is the condition for Himself? Huh? What on earth does that even mean? That is nonsensical to me.

Karla said...

Karla: Yes the condition for eternal life is Jesus. I thought I was saying that all along, I apologize for not being clear.

BoomSlang “What you've been saying all along is that this alleged "gift" is for everyone, and as I've pointed out, it is not for everyone. Atheists and other nonchristians do not receive the "gift"; only Christians receive the "gift".”

Who receives it and who it is available to are two different things.

BoomSlang “Conclusion: The "gift" is most certainly conditional; Jesus' acceptance is therefore conditional. But for some strange reason, you now allude to the notion that Jesus' "love" is somehow not conditional....”

He loves us no matter how much sin we have done. His love sent Him to pay the price of that sin for us. We can accept that or reject that. The choice is ours.

BoomSlang “You didn't have to "say" it; the implication is there all throughout this conversation.”

See above.

BoomSlang “It's simple: You've already conceded that Jesus' "gift" is conditional. Remember? Just scroll up a bit and review your own words if you must.”

See above.

BoomSlang “Now, isn't this supposed "gift" supposed to be a demonstration of Jesus' self-sacrificing "love" for us?("Agape love").”

Yes.

BoomSlang “Or are you suggesting that as Jesus stands by and watches all nonchristians roast away in "Hell", that he still "loves" them?”

His love paid the price so that this doesn’t have to happen.

BoomSlang “If you answer "yes" to that, then I will gladly concede that Jesus' love is unconditional. Of course, then we're working with really bizarre and twisted definition of "love", one that I personally would denounce and want no part of, even if I was convinced it was all true.”

God is also Just. His Love and Justice work in tandem perfectly. He doesn’t stop being loving to be just. But His love isn’t in absence of His justice.

BoomSlang “Karla, how is it a demonstration of "love" to watch human beings being tortured in horrific agony, *especially*, when/if you had the power to come up with a different, more humane alternative if you really, really wanted to?”

He wants none to perish. Any harm to any of us grieves Him.

Karla: I said eternal life is Him so He would be what you need for eternal life. He is love and He is the way to love. So He is the condition for Himself. How is that saying His love is conditional?

BoomSlang “He is the condition for Himself? Huh? What on earth does that even mean? That is nonsensical to me.”

The love we need is in Jesus. So how would we experience it outside of Him? Logically we need it from its source and not from some other source. God is love. Jesus is the exact personification of the Father. He is the source of Love, He demonstrated that Love for us. How do you expect to encounter His Love without encountering Him?

Karla said...

BoomSlang “ The evidence for Naturalism is nature. Secondly, you only show me(and probably other Atheist guests) that you do not listen, since you are asking for "evidence for Atheism". “

Naturalism, if I’m not mistaken, is the idea that nature is all there is. So what is the evidence that nothing else exist beyond the physical natural world?

As for atheism, I understand the idea that atheist aren’t positing anything therefore have nothing to give evidence for. However, is it possible to look beyond that and describe why it seems agnostic leaning atheism makes sense of the world.

BoomSlang “Karla, I don't believe in "God"/gods. The evidence that I don't believe in such things is that I'm TELLING YOU that I don't believe in such things. Please try to understand that "Atheism" is a response to Theism; it is *not* a proclaimation that "Gods don't exist!" You are the one claiming that there is more to *nature* than nature, thus, the onus of proving this is upon you. It is not the Atheist's burden to disprove the Theist's claims.”

I know. *sigh* but that circumvents your responsibility to give evidence for your worldview.

...I’m saying there is more to love than that kind of love.

BoomSlang “To say one person's idea of love is "not complete" is to say it's incomplete, or lacking in some way. Again, I kind of resent that implication. Perhaps you should come up with a better, less offensive apologetic?”

I’ve repeatedly explained I was not trying to say anything demeaning or offensive. You can love your family and friends. But there is more than that kind of love and that more is what I am talking about.


BoomSlang “I've given a refutation of "Agape love" on the A & C blog. I'm not going over it again here, except to say that "love" based on conditions is not the "Highest form of Love". Love me....OR BURN! is not "love". Throwing all of your "sins" on the back of an innocent man is not "Love". I don't care what language it's derived from.”

I’ve explained there are no conditions. Jesus doesn’t ask you to clean up or pay restitution for your sins before you encounter Him. Jesus = Life. It’s that simple.

BoomSlang “ Again, "trust" is built upon a proven, verifiable track-record. Conversely, "faith", in a religious context, is not.”

God does have a proven track record in my life and in others and in history.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: Who receives ["the gift"] and who it is available to are two different things.

...as are having a "gift" in my possession, and being told that one exists behind a curtain that I can have later, provided I do such-n-such, or become such-n-such, or believe such-n-such...i.e..conditional

Me, previously: “Conclusion: The 'gift' is most certainly conditional; Jesus' acceptance is therefore conditional. But for some strange reason, you now allude to the notion that Jesus' 'love' is somehow not conditional....”

You respond: He loves us no matter how much sin we have done.

So, he "loves" those who he has no choice but to put in "Hell". Is that an accurate assessment? I'm trying to get to the bottom of this, and you are being equivocal.

Continues...His love sent Him to pay the price of that sin for us.

So, assuming when you say "paid", that you mean "paid" in full, why are we required to believe certain things before it's applied to our so-called "debt"?

Continues...We can accept that or reject that. The choice is ours.

I would first have to be able to believe that said "choice" has a foundation in reality before I could make a "choice" to accept this alleged "gift". I've pointed out to you, oh, probably a dozen times now, that I am *unable* to believe it.

Me, previously: “It's simple: You've already conceded that Jesus' 'gift' is conditional. Remember? Just scroll up a bit and review your own words if you must.”

You respond: See above.

I don't need to "see above"---you can't have "eternal life" unless you have "Jesus", according to you....

"Yes the condition for eternal life is Jesus." ~ Karla[bold added]

I reiterate: In the end, only Christians benefit(i.e."Heaven") from the supposed self-sacrificing "love" of "Jesus"(i.e.the "gift"). Yes, you've heaped on the apologetics in defense of this(I don't deny this), but sadly, you haven't over-come this issue using logic, the way I understand logic to work. To be fair, you've recently talked about the availability of the "gift", yet, as I've pointed out, that is irrelevant. Having something in one's possession is not one and the same with having something "available" to them. The lotto jackpot is "available" to anyone, but you must have the winning lotto numbers to receive it. A paycheck is "available" to anyone, but you must work for it to receive it. In other words, something that is truly "free" doesn't require anything.

Me, previously: “Or are you suggesting that as Jesus stands by and watches all nonchristians roast away in 'Hell', that he still 'loves' them?”

You respond: His love paid the price so that this doesn’t have to happen.

Blatant circumventing of my question. I did not ask if it had to happen or not.

Karla, if your worldview is actually true, countless human beings will be magically kept alive and tortured in a "lake of fire". Again - with your "Jesus" as a witness to this process - does he still "love" them? That is my question.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: God is also Just. His Love and Justice work in tandem perfectly.

What about people like me who are unable to believe on "faith"? Does "Jesus" make special provisions for those who can't honestly believe? Or does he just treat all nonchristians the same across the board?

He wants none to perish.

Yes, "perish"...aka, burning in hell. And it's not being antagonistic, Karla; it's called....calling a spade a spade, where as, you will continually sugar-coat your beliefs, which, to me, is indicative that there are things about those beliefs that make you uncomfortable.

Any harm to any of us grieves Him.

But oddly, not to the point of doing anything about it, which is strange, especially if you have unlimited power and knowledge.

And then, this...

The love we need is in Jesus.

Prove it.

So how would we experience it outside of Him?

Irrelevant until/unless you prove that the "Him" exists.

Logically we need it from its source and not from some other source.

Logically, you'd have to prove that this "source" exists. You haven't come close.

God is love.

No; love is "love".

Jesus is the exact personification of the Father.

Prove it.

He is the source of Love

Prove it.

He demonstrated that Love for us.

What? Where is the objective confirmation for this, outside of your personal beliefs and your bible?

How do you expect to encounter His Love without encountering Him?

Did I ever say that "I expect to encounter His Love without encountering Him"? No, I did not.

At least we (hopefully) have an understanding that I can't believe in "Him" until/unless "He" gives me the evidence that "He" knows I need to *honestly* believe.

Karla, you *habitually* regurgitate what you believe to be true in an attempt to try to overcome any and all issues raised by nontheists, never offering a scrap of testible, verifiable evidence to support your beliefs. Your apologetics are riddled with logical inconsistancies and logical fallacies, namely, the fallacy of bare assertion.

What is the next "step", since what you are doing only convinces the already-convinced?

God does have a proven track record in my life and in others and in history.

None of whom can offer any objective confirmation beyond anecdotal testimony, and bare assertions.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: Naturalism, if I’m not mistaken, is the idea that nature is all there is. So what is the evidence that nothing else exist beyond the physical natural world?

The evidence(*note, not proof) that there is probably nothing beyond the physical world is that there is no evidence that there *IS* something "beyond the physical world". The Naturalist says that "God" and its supposed "Supernatural" realm are unproven, not "disproven". There's a difference between the two.

As for atheism, I understand the idea that atheist aren’t positing anything therefore have nothing to give evidence for. However, is it possible to look beyond that and describe why it seems agnostic leaning atheism makes sense of the world.

I don't understand the question.

I know. *sigh* but that circumvents your responsibility to give evidence for your worldview.

Karla, you bring your frustration on yourself because you don't listen.

Repeat: My "worldview" is NOT one of, "THERE IS NO GOD!!!!". Rather, I don't see credible evidence for such things, *therefore*, I don't believe in them. Why is it my "responsibility" to prove to someone that I don't believe in something? Prove to me that you don't believe that deep-fried spiders taste good. Prove to me that you don't believe in gremlins. Are you getting this?

I’ve repeatedly explained I was not trying to say anything demeaning or offensive.

Yes, after the fact, which is why I suggested a different approach, as to prevent you from having to go back and "clarify" all the time.

I’ve explained there are no conditions.

Yes, and as I've explained, your explanations fall short and don't resolve the issue. See here*, below, where your own words reveal the "condition" I speak of.

Jesus doesn’t ask you to clean up or pay restitution for your sins before you encounter Him.

'Defending an argument I didn't make.

Jesus = Life. It’s that simple.

Life? I have "Life" right now, as do millions of nonchristians around the globe. Or did you mean "eternal Life"?... in which case, I give you once more....

"Yes the condition for eternal life is Jesus." ~ Karla[bold added]

Karla said...

BoomSlang “...as are having a "gift" in my possession, and being told that one exists behind a curtain that I can have later, provided I do such-n-such, or become such-n-such, or believe such-n-such...i.e..conditional”

It’s something you can have immediately. You can have Jesus right now. The gift of life is Himself. He is unconditionally available to you. Believing in Him isn’t a rule, but logically necessary. How can you know someone you don’t know? How can you have a gift you don’t believe exist? Why do you want something in a manner that breaks all logic? It’s like your asking for a round square.

Boom Slang “So, he "loves" those who he has no choice but to put in "Hell". Is that an accurate assessment? I'm trying to get to the bottom of this, and you are being equivocal.”

He doesn’t put us there. We put ourselves there by remaining separated from Him.

Continues...His love sent Him to pay the price of that sin for us.

BoomSlang “So, assuming when you say "paid", that you mean "paid" in full, why are we required to believe certain things before it's applied to our so-called "debt"?”

Yes “paid in full.” It’s not about believing certain things, it’s about Jesus. He is the source of the life, salvation, grace, mercy, love, etc.

When you hear me talk about Jesus, do you for a moment think about a real person that you could possibly really know?

Because when I speak of Jesus, I am not talking about believing in a set of doctrine or a series of facts, I am talking about having real knowledge of Him by knowing Him directly, no veil, really encountering Him and experiencing His truth.

I think we are going round and round because even though we are talking about the same thing we are looking at it from entirely different directions. What does “believing in Jesus” mean to you when you hear me say it? What do you hear me saying/meaning?

Continues...We can accept that or reject that. The choice is ours.

BoomSlang “I would first have to be able to believe that said "choice" has a foundation in reality before I could make a "choice" to accept this alleged "gift". I've pointed out to you, oh, probably a dozen times now, that I am *unable* to believe it.”

Okay, I can see how at this point in time you are unable to believe it. You haven’t seen credible evidence for Him, you haven’t encountered Him . . . I believe, as the Scriptures say, that if a person is truly seeking truth with their mind and heart they will find Truth. And you really can’t go wrong seeking after truth.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “I reiterate: In the end, only Christians benefit(i.e."Heaven") from the supposed self-sacrificing "love" of "Jesus"(i.e.the "gift").”

Christian is just a term for those who follow Christ. If Christ is the source of life, heaven, etc. then why would it be logical to acquire what only He has to offer from anywhere/anyone else?


BoomSlang “ Yes, you've heaped on the apologetics in defense of this(I don't deny this), but sadly, you haven't over-come this issue using logic, the way I understand logic to work. To be fair, you've recently talked about the availability of the "gift", yet, as I've pointed out, that is irrelevant.”

I think I haven’t taken into account well how you hear what I am saying as a mentioned above.


BoomSlang “Having something in one's possession is not one and the same with having something "available" to them. The lotto jackpot is "available" to anyone, but you must have the winning lotto numbers to receive it. A paycheck is "available" to anyone, but you must work for it to receive it. In other words, something that is truly "free" doesn't require anything.”

That’s different than what I am talking about. If Harvard University were giving away a million dollars cash to anyone who asked for it, would you be able to get it if you went and asked Yale for it?

Except it is different still with Jesus because it’s like Jesus is the million dollars, it isn’t something He is giving away, it is something that is Himself. So how can you have the life of Him without having Him? It is logically impossible.

Me, previously: “Or are you suggesting that as Jesus stands by and watches all nonchristians roast away in 'Hell', that he still 'loves' them?”

Yes, His love continues and He grieves for the loss of those who perish without Him. Just as a natural father would still love a son on death row.

BoomSlang “Karla, if your worldview is actually true, countless human beings will be magically kept alive and tortured in a "lake of fire". Again - with your "Jesus" as a witness to this process - does he still "love" them? That is my question.”

Yes He still loves them. His love doesn’t put them there. He grieves their loss.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “What about people like me who are unable to believe on "faith"? Does "Jesus" make special provisions for those who can't honestly believe? Or does he just treat all nonchristians the same across the board?”

He will do what is right and good for each person according to their own knowledge of truth.


BoomSlang “Yes, "perish"...aka, burning in hell. And it's not being antagonistic, Karla; it's called....calling a spade a spade, where as, you will continually sugar-coat your beliefs, which, to me, is indicative that there are things about those beliefs that make you uncomfortable. “

Not trying to surgar coat anything. The Bible uses the word “perish” I don’t see it as a sugar coated word.

BoomSlang “But oddly, not to the point of doing anything about it, which is strange, especially if you have unlimited power and knowledge.”

He has done everything about it. He sent Jesus to pay our debt to sin. The ball is in our court.

BoomSlang “Prove it.”

As far as all the prove it. I do make a lot of assertions and it is not because I think stating it will give you an “ah-ha” moment and you’ll suddenly believe it just because I keep stating it. What I am trying to do is provide a framework of what I do believe before talking more about the why and how of it. I find often times I can’t assume people, even former church goers, know what I am advocating for. And when I hear some of what you say, I see I have a lot of ground to cover before getting into any kind of “apologetic”. Not that I have some neatly formulated arguments. I see this whole thing as much more about experiencing Him for yourself then about convincing or persuading anyone by argumentation.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “ Life? I have "Life" right now, as do millions of nonchristians around the globe. Or did you mean "eternal Life"?... in which case, I give you once more....”

See we are still at the place where we are defining what we are talking about, and that’s okay, but it is important not to skip that process.

Life. I do not mean the nature of being alive which we all share. I am talking about a substance of “life” called “eternal life” which is God’s life which dwells in us when He dwells in us. “Eternal life” isn’t just “going to heaven when I die” it’s having the reality and vitality of heaven with me now as it is found in God and God is in me. That is why it isn’t something given to us separate from God, but is found in God and is why it isn’t about believing a system of facts and agreeing that the Bible is true, it’s about encountering the living God for ourselves and His life dwelling in ours which gives us the LIFE I am talking about.

boomSLANG said...

Me, previously:“[there is a difference between] having a 'gift' in my possession, and being told that one exists behind a curtain that I can have later, provided I do such-n-such, or become such-n-such, or believe such-n-such...i.e..conditional”

You respond: It’s something you can have immediately. You can have Jesus right now.

More equivocation; more language gymnastics. This is becoming soooo tedious.

Karla,

Whether I can "have Jesus right now" is *immaterial* to the "debt" already having been "paid". Do you understand?

Try to follow along...

If "Jesus" already(key word) "died"(the "sacrifice") to pay this alledged "debt" that I owe(for being born a "sinner"), then said "debt" is already paid, as in, PAST TENSE..i.e..done deal; finished; finalized!

But yet, I, and all other Atheists/nonchristians, do NOT get the benefit of the "gift"? No, which is odd, because our "debt" was presumably ALREADY PAID. So?...why are nonchristians ineligible for "Heaven"(aka, "Eternal Life with Jesus"), hmmmm?

Answer: Because ONLY "Christians" get into "Heaven", *THEREFORE*, only "Christians" get "Eternal Life", *THEREFORE*, accepting "Jesus" is the condition.

Shall we review your words for yet a forth time? Let's do....

*"Yes the CONDITION for eternal life is Jesus." ~ Karla

[bold and capitalization added]

The gift of life is Himself.

Irrelevant nonsense that doesn't alter the meaning of what you said, here*, above.

He is unconditionally available to you.

Stop equivocating. You've lost this point. Why not just admit it, instead of perpetually defending your errors?

Believing in Him isn’t a rule, but logically necessary.

It's a "rule", and thus "necessary", if I don't want to be incincerated for all of eternity.

As far as "logical", I'm sorry, it is not "logical" to ask someone to believe a proposition that they don't find believable, unless you are going to offer some new evidence for them to examine.

How can you know someone you don’t know?

I've never claimed that I can "know someone I don't know". You are defending an argument that I didn't make(again).

How can you have a gift you don’t believe exist?

Red herring. Whether I believe the Christian philosophy is true, or not, is not the issue at hand. Once more, Karla, I'm talking to you under the *PRETENSE* that it's all true, to illustrate to you that certain tenets of said philosophy are largely illogical, which makes your next statement all the more eyebrow raising.....

Why do you want something in a manner that breaks all logic?

Astounding.

It’s like your asking for a round square.

Ad hominem/strawman(fallacies)

No, Karla, I'm asking you to concede that there are strings attached to the promises that your bible and its "God" make. What's perplexing, is that you've already conceded this; we have your full admission on this issue.

boomSLANG said...

Me, previously: “So, he 'loves' those who he has no choice but to put in 'Hell'. Is that an accurate assessment? I'm trying to get to the bottom of this, and you are being equivocal.”

Karla: He doesn’t put us there. We put ourselves there by remaining separated from Him

Let's see, you not only equivocate even more, but you ignore the question, altogether.

(*note, further reading reveals that you actually answer the question later. Why you didn't do it here, I have no clue)

Me, previously: “So, assuming when you say 'paid', that you mean 'paid' in full, why are we required to believe certain things before it's applied to our so-called 'debt'?”

You respond with...Yes 'paid in full.' It’s not about believing certain things, it’s about Jesus.

Yes, it's "about Jesus", which includes, believing in "Jesus". And if I don't believe - or my case, if I am unable to believe - I "put myself in Hell" even though my "debt" was already "paid in full" *before* I was even born.

When you hear me talk about Jesus, do you for a moment think about a real person that you could possibly really know?

'Depends on if the "person" is dead or alive. If the latter - if "Jesus" is a living, flesh-n-blood "real person" - then there'd be some evidence of this guy, in which case, I'd think of him as a "real person" whom I could "know" just as soon as I saw that evidence. On the other hand, if "Jesus" is a deceased person, no, I wouldn't think of him as a "real person" that I could "know", because, well, dead people are dead.

Because when I speak of Jesus, I am not talking about believing in a set of doctrine or a series of facts, I am talking about having real knowledge of Him by knowing Him directly, no veil, really encountering Him and experiencing His truth.

Bear with me...

Does "Jesus" have hairy arms? What does his voice sound like? Is it a baritone or tenor? How tall is he? Weight? Eye color? 'Speak with an accent? What clothes was he wearing that last time you saw him? What's his favorite restaurant?

You will likely think I'm being "antagonistic" or sarcastic, but the truth is, this isn't really my intention. These are reasonable, legitimate questions that I could feasibly ask any person who claims to regularly "encounter"(hang out with?) another "person". Can you oblige me/us? I'm really curious about this.

I believe, as the Scriptures say, that if a person is truly seeking truth with their mind and heart they will find Truth. And you really can’t go wrong seeking after truth.

How does one "seek" with their "heart"? My "heart" is a mass of muscle and fluids---it is NON-SENTIENT. Do you by chance mean intuition? If so, history shows that people who use intuition, aka, "gut instinct", are people who are misled time and time again. This is where EVIDENCE comes into play, Karla. If I just had some good ol'fashioned concrete, empirical EVIDENCE that "Jesus" actually exists, and that he is this supposed "Truth", I wouldn't need to rely on such faulty, unreliable, superstition methods such as seeking knowledge with my "heart".

Christian is just a term for those who follow Christ.

Okay; fine....so, those "who follow Christ" are the only ones elgible for "Eternal Life".

If Christ is the source of life, heaven, etc. then why would it be logical to acquire what only He has to offer from anywhere/anyone else?

Arrrg. I find it so incredibly difficult to not be ad hominem with you. This is a totally ridiculous question, Karla. You are essentially asking me to ASSUME your position "true", and then asking me how it couldn't be true.

Here, let me try: If Lucky the Leprechaun knows that eating anything other than Lucky Charms is bad for you, why would you need to listen to what anyone else had to offer!?!?!?

See, *BEGGING THE QUESTION.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: That’s different than what I am talking about. If Harvard University were giving away a million dollars cash to anyone who asked for it, would you be able to get it if you went and asked Yale for it?

Karla, we're NOT debating where the "gift" comes from, or to which deity is offering it. Again, your analogy is lacking, and you are wasting time. The point is that the money is *free*, but the *condition* is stipulated..i.e..anyone who asks for it. And before you waste more time and go there....

I'm an Atheist. And sure, I can "ask for the gift" as you will no doubt retort, but the only way I'll receive it is if I convert to Christianity. There are no "Atheists" in "Heaven"; all the "Atheists" get "Hell".

Once more, the *condition* that your very own words reveal, is that the "gift" of "Eternal Life"(avoiding the "only" alternative, "Hell") is *only* for Christians, or if you prefer, "those who follow Jesus".

So how can you have the life of Him without having Him? It is logically impossible.

BEGGING THE QUESTION(again)

Please stop wasting your, my, and the reader's time with these fallacious, irrelevant apologetics. It's a nonsenscial question. Why?..because you are asking me to ASSUME YOUR POSITION TRUE, while asking me how it could be "false". 'Utterly ridiculous.

Me, previously: “Karla, if your worldview is actually true, countless human beings will be magically kept alive and tortured in a 'lake of fire'. Again - with your 'Jesus' as a witness to this process - does he still 'love' them? That is my question.”

Yes He still loves them. His love doesn’t put them there. He grieves their loss.

and...

Yes, His love continues and He grieves for the loss of those who perish[i.e..burn in hell] without Him. Just as a natural father would still love a son on death row.

Firstly, I feared what your answer would be, and frankly, this says a lot about you, but sadly, nothing very admirable, IMO. In fact, I may have to reassess my previous admission that you are "compassionate", as that has just changed as I read your words.

How sad and pathetic that you condone and extol a "God" who *MUST* torture, with FIRE, your own fellow human beings, all because it cannot stand to not be worshipped, followed, believed-in, loved, blah, blah... and to top it off, this "God", in all of its "Infinite Wisdom" cannot come up with a more humane alternative to this so-called "Heaven" than "Hell". My gosh, at least the "natural Father" can get some peace of mind knowing that his son is killed instantly, and the pain will end.

Maybe since "God" sets all the standards(in your mind), we should stop lethal injection for deathrow inmates and BURN THEM ALIVE...eh?

Me, previously: “What about people like me who are unable to believe on 'faith'? Does 'Jesus' make special provisions for those who can't honestly believe? Or does he just treat all nonchristians the same across the board?”

Karla: He will do what is right and good for each person according to their own knowledge of truth.

So, if I'm never presented evidence that convinces me - or, if "God" decides to keep being "patient" with me(as you put it) - I'll end up in "Hell", and that will be "right and good", correct? Yes, of course, because it's not about what is actually ethical; it's only about what "God" commands. He could command ANYTHING, and that would be seen as "right and good". This is why your belief-system is abhorent, and should be denounced.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: Not trying to surgar coat anything. The Bible uses the word “perish” I don’t see it as a sugar coated word.

It uses "lake of fire" and "furnace of fire", in which place there will be "gnashing of teeth". I just wonder why you always choose the more palatable term. I think it's very revealing, that's all.

He has done everything about it. He sent Jesus to pay our debt to sin. The ball is in our court.

Didn't Jesus' Father know that "sin" would occur when "He" brainstormed and decided to create "evil"....

"I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things." ~ God(Isaiah 45:7)

?????

What if our great, great, grandparents Adam & Eve hadn't "started the ball rolling"?(your words) We'd live on an earth where "sin" was impossible; we'd be inherently "good", right? 'See the problem? There's no "free will" in such a world, Karla. You can't have it both ways.

As for having "sent Jesus to pay our debt"---to my understanding of the scriptural timeline, "Jesus" already came and was executed. So, it would seem that "the debt" was already "PAID". Is that correct?....or do we still owe something? Is there a chance that we can clear this up once and for all? Hint: It will require honesty.

I find often times I can’t assume people, even former church goers, know what I am advocating for.

I'll wager that even current "church goers" don't know what you're advocating. In fact, I don't even think that *you* know some of the things that you implicitly advocate. There is all sorts of disrespect for human life throughout the bible. READ "Deuteronomy" and "Leviticus". You reconcile such disrespect with an attitude of, Well, God is God, and God is Perfect, so God is perfectly Just" yada, yada, "so it MUST be okay"!

See we are still at the place where we are defining what we are talking about...

Actually, no, I don't "see".

When I say "life"(lower case "l"), I mean the life that we know that we have for certain---that all living things have; not just homosapiens. Your definition of "Life"(upper case "T") is based on heresay that has yet to be proven. Moreover, many times your definitions are just nebulous meanderings couched in religion, and if I didn't already state it, these meanderings have no meaning, whatsoever, to a nontheist. If we aren't making progress all that fast, THAT is at least one of the reasons why.

...and that’s okay, but it is important not to skip that process.

The "process" of changing word meanings when backed into a corner? Luckily, what we say is documented.

Life. I do not mean the nature of being alive which we all share. I am talking about a substance of “life” called “eternal life”

Did you say, "substance"?????? Do you also have your own custom definition of "substance"??? Aren't things that have "substance" testible????

...which is God’s life which dwells in us when He dwells in us.

Did you say "in" us???? Where?

“Eternal life” isn’t just “going to heaven when I die” it’s having the reality and vitality of heaven with me now as it is found in God and God is in me.

Unproven/unconfirmed assertion, and thus, meaningless to someone who isn't already convinced. This underscores it---your apologetics only convince the already-convinced. Your custom definitions are only intelligible to those who already believe. Karla believes what she believes. It's official.

Karla said...

BoomSlang, I've read through your latest responses. . . Here's the thing I keep saying one thing and when you respond it sounds to me that what I had said got lost in translation. So I try to say it again in other words or sometimes the same words extrapolating more. But I must be doing a really bad job of that because it still seems to me we are having a language/worldview block and I want to get past my blocks so that I can really hear your questions. However, the your questions seem to indicate that you don't see what I am trying to communicate.

I will keep trying for as long as your game to work at it. Here's the thing, I am not looking for you to agree with what I am saying, I am looking for your disagreement to match what I am asserting. I don't see that happening, but it could be my lack of understanding your position, rather than your lack of understanding mine. We do have drastically different worldviews. But I have hope that we can at least get to a place where we really get each other even if we still don't agree.

Should I try to respond again to your latest comments?

boomSLANG said...

You are supposely the "Answer-Bearer". The problem is that your explanations("answers") don't satisfy those who are not already convinced. You make statements where, many times, you even *prove* and underscore(evidentally, unknowingly) the issues/discrepancies I raise. When said statements of yours, which are in plain text right in front of all of us, are revealed to show the error in your thinking, you will do about everything under the sun, *except*, own up to them. The whole "conditional"/"unconditional" issue is a perfect example. Your previous statement about "Jesus" being the "condition" - the one I've referenced, oh, 5 or 6 times now - completely proves my contention in all of this, and that is that "Salvation" has strings attached. And what do you do?....you come back and try to redefine "Eternal Life", and pile on the religious jargon that only has meaning to you, and to those who already believe.

Moreover, the conversation becomes even more convoluted when you commit fallacies such as begging the question, which you do frequently. That is, you ask me to assume that your position is "Truth", and then turn around and ask me why it would be "false". It wastes time, Karla, and from where I sit, it appears to be a disingenuous tactic.

I'm pretty much over it, but if you want to respond, I'll be willing to keep pointing out the flaws in your logic and how the philosophy you espouse is abhorent, illogical, and should be denounced.

Sincerely, 'Boom.

Karla said...

Um the term "answer bearer" isn't a used to say that I have all the right answers and am great at giving argumentation. It it used in a much humbler sense, that I have a responsibility to bear the reality of Jesus, the Answer, in my life. It is a reminder to myself that my actions reflect on Him whether good or bad. The term is a self reminder of who I am and who I bear rather than any kind of proclamation of intellectual capability on my part. If you look way back to my first articles I write about why I chose that name for my blog.

boomSLANG said...

....I have a responsibility to bear the reality of Jesus

A "responsibility"??? Why don't you just sit back and be "patient" like "Jesus"? If said biblegod exists, it certainly has more control over the situation than you do, yes? And yet, said "God" can evidentally sit back with a lackadaisical attitude, and you are fine with it. Meanwhile, thousands of "unsaved" people die daily because "Jesus" is being "patient". And we all know where they go.

And as for "the reality of Jesus", did I mention that this was/is unproven? You've got a belief, Karla. And as I said on your latest thread, this is the one and *only* thing that you've succeded in conveying in these conversations: Karla believes what she believes.

...the Answer, in my life.[bold added]

Yes, *your* life. 'Got it.

Welp, for many - in fact, MILLIONS - "Allah" and "Buddha" are the "Answer" in their lives. They believe just as fervently, passionately, "faithfully" as you do, Karla. They can even captialize the word "Answer", just like you can. Of course, you'll label them "deceived", but that doesn't mean that what they believe does not "work" for them.

If Theists could just understand that what "works" for them as an "Answer" in their lifes, might not, and in fact, does not, work for *everybody*, the world would be a better place, IMO.

Karla said...

BoomSlang, your argument seems an emotional rather than a logical response. And I don't say that to be condescending or anything. What I mean is that just because there are people who fervently believe things to be true doesn't mean that all such beliefs are false. One could logically be true and the others false and no amount of feeling bad for those that are on a road that isn't true will make that road better for them. The best thing is to help people find what is true not to mope about there being a right road God did give us. For there to be a right road, means anything that isn't that isn't the way to life.

I know we disagree, but I haven't seen a compelling reason why your idea about life is a better or more right road. And because you believe that your non-belief makes it so you don't have to give evidence for non-belief we are left without any ability to communicate about evidence for your position about life.

boomSLANG said...

BoomSlang, your argument seems an emotional rather than a logical response.

Then again, perhaps it is both. I can be emotionally charged, due to the nature of the subject matter and how your answers sometimes irritate me, but my refutations still be logically sound.

And I don't say that to be condescending or anything.

Okay.

What I mean is that just because there are people who fervently believe things to be true doesn't mean that all such beliefs are false.

I never suggested that it meant that. You are reading into my statements, and once again, defending things that I didn't say. We(you) waste considerable amounts of time doing this.

Let me try to be more clear:

When I say that people believe just as fervently, passionately, etc., as you do, I'm trying to point out that while you believe the "other guy" is deceived/wrong, that you are not exempt from being deceived/wrong, yourself, because after all, all you have is the *SAME* "fervor" and "passion" for being "right" as the other guy.

One could logically be true and the others false and no amount of feeling bad for those that are on a road that isn't true will make that road better for them.

Good grief, who said anything about trying to make a "better road" for those who are deceived? That is totally irrelevant. And BTW, you leave out one senario: ALL religiously revealed "knowledge" could be false. Maybe "the Truth" is unknowable or can never be fully known. And anyway, what does "YAHWEH DID IT!", or "ALLAH DID IT!", actually explain????? Answer: Nothing at all.

The best thing is to help people find what is true not to mope about there being a right road God did give us.

And how do you intend to "help people find what is true" if you cannot prove to these "lost souls" that you *know* what is "true"????

For there to be a right road, means anything that isn't that isn't the way to life.

This is ridiculous, Karla. You keep making these obvious, redundant statements as if you are saying something profound. You are essentially saying that those who are on the "right road" are "right", and those who aren't, aren't. Do you see the problem? You haven't given any objective evidence that you are *on* this supposed "right road"! You can sit here until donkeys fly and state over and over and over and over that what is "true" is true, and what is "false" is false!!!!! So?....what?

boomSLANG said...

Karla: I know we disagree, but I haven't seen a compelling reason why your idea about life is a better or more right road.

For one, because my "idea about life" puts compassion for my fellow man, first. Your "idea about life" isn't even yours, firstly---its "God's". You are subservient to a being who you deem as intrinsically "Moral", in which case, it could command any damned thing it wanted to - even if humanity agreed it was harmful/unethcial - and you would throw your arms up in the air and praise this being for being "Moral", "Perfect", and Good". This is why such a belief is dangerous, especially when people believe they are doing "God's Will".

And because you believe that your non-belief makes it so you don't have to give evidence for non-belief...

But you say it as if it is unfair or that we are on uneven ground.

Do you think that if you were debating a Scientologist instead of me that you should be required to provide evidence for your nonbelief in "Thetans"? Do you think that if you were debating a UFOlogist instead of me that you should be required to provide evidence for your nonbelief in "Aliens"? If not, then why do I need to provide evidence for my nonbelief in "Yahweh"??????

...we are left without any ability to communicate about evidence for your position about life.

The "evidence" for my "position about life" is that Nature exists, and that we live in a Uni-verse governed by the laws of said Nature. Additionally, there is all sorts of evidence that man has evolved, biologically, and socially, to avoid unnecessary harm. To have compassion and empathy, etc., is to avoid unnecessary harm to our fellow man.

Conversely, the bible depicts a deity who commands and takes part in all sorts of harm and disrespect to human beings, even woman and children. You should be "blessed" to dash children against rocks? Really? When? Name a senario when you'd feel "blessed" to commit such a heinously cruel act.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “Then again, perhaps it is both. I can be emotionally charged, due to the nature of the subject matter and how your answers sometimes irritate me, but my refutations still be logically sound.”

Yeah, that’s understandable, I don’t expect anyone to be a Spock. Emotions are important. But I was thinking about it more in the context of something can be true even if we don’t like the reality of it. That we would first need to establish if the thing was true before establishing if it was wrong or repulsive.

And I don't say that to be condescending or anything.

Okay.

What I mean is that just because there are people who fervently believe things to be true doesn't mean that all such beliefs are false.

BoomSlang “I never suggested that it meant that. You are reading into my statements, and once again, defending things that I didn't say. We(you) waste considerable amounts of time doing this.”

We both seem to be responding to things each of us aren’t advocating. I realize I am doing this and I want to get past what I think your saying to what you are saying. Last month I wrote a post about how I want to foster understanding here and I see the other person as the as the judge of that. I haven’t reached my goal until you feel I am understanding your concerns and questions and point of view regardless of whether we agree on things or not.


Boom “When I say that people believe just as fervently, passionately, etc., as you do, I'm trying to point out that while you believe the "other guy" is deceived/wrong, that you are not exempt from being deceived/wrong, yourself, because after all, all you have is the *SAME* "fervor" and "passion" for being "right" as the other guy.”

Okay.

One could logically be true and the others false and no amount of feeling bad for those that are on a road that isn't true will make that road better for them.

BoomSlang “Good grief, who said anything about trying to make a "better road" for those who are deceived? That is totally irrelevant.”

I’m trying to back up to find some common ground. We jumped into this conversation dealing with a specific truth claim that I believe of Jesus being the right road. However, I am trying to back up to the non-specific and talk about “truth claims” or “roads” “ways” in general rather than dealing with a specific claim first. Can we try that?


BoomSlang “ And BTW, you leave out one senario: ALL religiously revealed "knowledge" could be false. Maybe "the Truth" is unknowable or can never be fully known.”

All of these are things that we can examine. Roads we can look down to see where they logically lead or don’t lead. If we start with all religious roads are false. We have no reason to look any farther. If we start with the premise all truth is unknowable then we have no reason to keep trying to know anything and really any of these discussions will always be fruitless and irrelevant. I’m not content to accept those premises and stop all truth seeking. I have to ask why so many try to find Truth if there is none to find? Why are we prone to seek?


BoomSlang “And anyway, what does "YAHWEH DID IT!", or "ALLAH DID IT!", actually explain????? Answer: Nothing at all.”

I’m not content with such a simple answer. I’m not offering such an answer.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “And how do you intend to "help people find what is true" if you cannot prove to these "lost souls" that you *know* what is "true"????”

I believe that people can know truth from falsehood. I don’t pretend to have all knowledge, answers, or be great at articulating what I know, though I persevere to articulate my knowledge and thoughts through my writing. I think we both agree that truth is better than falsehood so I see it as helping people to help them discover the truth. I don’t want to persuade people to accept my beliefs; I want to aid people in their own personal discovery of Truth. In fact, I was talking to someone recently and telling them I didn’t want them to take my word for anything, I wanted them to search out for themselves what I was explaining and see if they encounter the reality of it. That’s as much as I can do for anyone.

For there to be a right road, means anything that isn't that isn't the way to life.

BoomSlang “This is ridiculous, Karla. You keep making these obvious, redundant statements as if you are saying something profound. You are essentially saying that those who are on the "right road" are "right", and those who aren't, aren't. Do you see the problem? You haven't given any objective evidence that you are *on* this supposed "right road"!”

No, above I was backing up to try to find common ground. Understanding that if there is a right road then necessarily other roads would be false. I was just trying to establish some basic logic. I wasn’t asserting anything more there.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “ For one, because my "idea about life" puts compassion for my fellow man, first. Your "idea about life" isn't even yours, firstly---its "God's". You are subservient to a being who you deem as intrinsically "Moral", in which case, it could command any damned thing it wanted to - even if humanity agreed it was harmful/unethcial - and you would throw your arms up in the air and praise this being for being "Moral", "Perfect", and Good". This is why such a belief is dangerous, especially when people believe they are doing "God's Will".”


What is compassion? How is it better than selfishness?

If God has revealed truth to the world He created, then that truth would be superior to anything we invent.

I don’t believe God can do anything “not good.” Goodness gains it’s meaning in His Being. Something not good doesn’t become good because He does it. Goodness is His nature and badness is that which is not found in His nature. Compassion, in the context of this view, is found in His nature and that is why it is good. But compassion without justice isn’t good. That kind of compassion would have no consequences for evil. God has grace for evil, but that grace and love fixes the problem of evil in that person and redeems them.

boomSLANG said...

Karla: I believe that people can know truth from falsehood.

Okay; fine. But through what means and methods would you suggest that they determine one from the other? For instance, what do you think is the more reliable method for knowing what is true(small case "t") from what is false, a) one's intuition("gut instinct") which is based on emotion?.. or b) the scientific method which is based on rigorous testing/observing?

Would you teach/encourage people to take a doctrinal approach to seeking truth?...or would you teach them to seek and find what is true, independently?

I don’t pretend to have all knowledge, answers, or be great at articulating what I know, though I persevere to articulate my knowledge and thoughts through my writing.

Aren't you a proponent of the philosophy that the Bible contains ALL knowledge(Ultimate Knowledge), and therefore, one need not look elsewhere for answers? Or have I misunderstood something somewhere along the line?

I think we both agree that truth is better than falsehood..

Yes.

...so I see it as helping people to help them discover the truth.

That would be fine and dandy, *provided*, you don't encourage that they take ideological or doctrinal approach.

I don’t want to persuade people to accept my beliefs; I want to aid people in their own personal discovery of Truth.

That's admirable, however, "personal discovery" implies seeking independently. To my understanding, the Christian philosophy teaches just the opposite---it encourages people to be *dependent* on the bible and its "God" for such things as "Morality", "Love", "Purpose", and according to some, even "Science".

In fact, I was talking to someone recently and telling them I didn’t want them to take my word for anything, I wanted them to search out for themselves what I was explaining and see if they encounter the reality of it. That’s as much as I can do for anyone.

Again, that's admirble, and I find no objections to it(wow..a first!).

Now, imagine if the religious encouraged their children in a similar manner? Something to the effect of, "You know, dear, there are all sorts of people and all sorts of cultures and all sorts of religious beliefs out there---and some people aren't religious at all. Seek with an open mind and see what makes the most sense to you!"

To me, that is ideal, but sadly, that's not at all what happens. Children are not taught how to think; they're taught what to think...i.e..brainwashing.

Understanding that if there is a right road then necessarily other roads would be false. I was just trying to establish some basic logic.

Some things are so basic, logical, and self-evident, that they go without saying.

boomSLANG said...

Previously, I said: “... my 'idea about life' puts compassion for my fellow man, first. Your 'idea about life' isn't even yours, firstly---its 'God's'. You are subservient to a being who you deem as intrinsically 'Moral', in which case, it could command any damned thing it wanted to - even if humanity agreed it was harmful/unethcial - and you would throw your arms up in the air and praise this being for being 'Moral', 'Perfect', and 'Good'. This is why such a belief is dangerous, especially when people believe they are doing 'God's Will'.”

You respond: What is compassion? How is it better than selfishness?

Compassion is being empathetic towards others. When we live in a group, we know that being empathetic is better than being "selfish" because the former ensures our survival. It really is that simple, Karla.

If God has revealed truth to the world He created, then that truth would be superior to anything we invent.

Who says? If "God" doesn't base its actions/beliefs on any external standard, then what you're left with is this:

An O-P-I-N-I-O-N.

Whatever "God" says is just its opinion, Karla.

You see, you keep failing to grasp that if this "God" that you speak of is defined as "Perfect", as in, if Perfection is intrinsic to its nature, then literally, nothing it says or commands could be imperfect, in which case, it could command its "creation" to do all sorts of dispicable things to each other(just as it does precisely this in the bible), and you would have no choice but to see it as "Perfectly Moral", which is why you are defending this "God" as we speak.....

Goodness gains it’s meaning in His Being.

Wrong. "Goodness" exists independently of "God".

Something not good doesn’t become good because He does it.

So unless you misspoke, you are now conceding that "good" exists outside of what "God" does.

Let's be sure: If "God" ordered our troops to, "Dash the infidel's children against the rocks!!", help me understand---would that be "good", or "not good"???????

But compassion without justice isn’t good.

False dilemma. "Compassion", with or without "Justice", is "good".

That kind of compassion would have no consequences for evil.

Again, when/if someone is being "punished", it isn't done for the sake of "compassion"; it is done in an attempt to seek "justice".

On another note, the whole point of "punishment" is to teach a lesson/be a deterant. Therefore, a "punishment" that does NOT end isn't a punishment at all; it is simply torture.

God has grace for evil, but that grace and love fixes the problem of evil in that person and redeems them.

NO, "grace and love" most certainly do *not* "fix" the problem of "evil". For "evil" to be "fixed", it would have to be eliminated. A termite specialist hasn't "fixed" the problem until/unless he eliminates the termites.

Your excuse for why "God" refuses to eliminate "evil" is because he is being "patient". I find that to be a non-reason(as well as ridiculous). I offer that rather than there being some omnipotent, omnipresent, omnibenevolent "God" who sits back and does nothing about "evil" because he is being "patient", that there is no such being.... no "evil, no "sin", no "angels", no "devils", no "heaven", no "hell"---it is all legendary myth.

Notwithstanding, the "evil"("sin") that you speak of is only being pardoned; it is not being "fixed"--assuming that your worldview is actually true.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “Okay; fine. But through what means and methods would you suggest that they determine one from the other? ”

Well when I am talking about truth with you here I am talking about eternal truths not just informational knowledge. I say we recognize this truth both with our mind and our heart. But when I say heart, I am not talking about the organ, nor just emotions. It’s like when we really experience something as true either by tangibly encountering something as true, or discovering it through logic and reason, I believe it also resonates within us deeper than with just our mind and emotions, but the depth of who we are begins to awaken to the truth.

Informational true facts, I would say reason, logic, scientific investigation, etc. Actually, did you see my post on this topic where I talked about the weather?

BoomSlang “Would you teach/encourage people to take a doctrinal approach to seeking truth?...or would you teach them to seek and find what is true, independently?”

I think doctrine is a way not the way to point to the truth, like a map points to a treasure. But someone could find the treasure without the map, if someone else who already found it guides them or if the one who buried the treasure guides them.

I don’t pretend to have all knowledge, answers, or be great at articulating what I know, though I persevere to articulate my knowledge and thoughts through my writing.

BoomSlang “Aren't you a proponent of the philosophy that the Bible contains ALL knowledge(Ultimate Knowledge), and therefore, one need not look elsewhere for answers? Or have I misunderstood something somewhere along the line?”

No. You have misunderstood that. I believe the contents of the Bible are true, but I do not believe that it is all encompassing of all knowledge on all things. There is much it doesn’t cover. It’s not about doctrine, or the Bible. It’s about the person the Bible points to.

Karla “I think we both agree that truth is better than falsehood..”

Boom “Yes.”

Good, we have some common ground there.

Karla “...so I see it as helping people to help them discover the truth.”

Boom “That would be fine and dandy, *provided*, you don't encourage that they take ideological or doctrinal approach.”

Do my answers above sufficiently address this?

I don’t want to persuade people to accept my beliefs; I want to aid people in their own personal discovery of Truth.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “That's admirable, however, "personal discovery" implies seeking independently. To my understanding, the Christian philosophy teaches just the opposite---it encourages people to be *dependent* on the bible and its "God" for such things as "Morality", "Love", "Purpose", and according to some, even "Science".”

Okay I see where you are going, I think. Yes, we do believe that God is the source for all of this and that the Bible is true and points to God and all that. But we were talking about a person who doesn’t believe this, so that person needs to discover that truth and not believe it because someone else tells him it’s true. That person needs to encounter the reality of God for himself and find that God has revealed knowledge to us through the Bible and is revealing himself still in the present day. So I encourage people to seek out God for themselves to encounter Him for themselves. I can’t make that happen, I’m not going to try and trick anyone into thinking they have encountered Him. I fully believe that if they seek ought the truth they will encounter Him and He will reveal Himself. That’s all between the person and God.

I just hope in my writing to help clear away some of the misconceptions about these things and foster understanding of what we actually do believe and leave the rest up to the person and to God. I’m not here to try and argue anyone into conversion. In fact, if I encountered a gullible person that was just believing everything I said because they didn’t think for themselves I would steer them away from believing me just because I said it or anyone else for that matter. I would tell them just like I would tell a skeptic to seek out the reality of truth for themselves and search it all out to see if you encounter the truth of it or not.


BoomSlang “Again, that's admirble, and I find no objections to it(wow..a first!).”

lol, maybe I’m not who you thought I was.

BoomSlang “Now, imagine if the religious encouraged their children in a similar manner? Something to the effect of, "You know, dear, there are all sorts of people and all sorts of cultures and all sorts of religious beliefs out there---and some people aren't religious at all. Seek with an open mind and see what makes the most sense to you!"

Actually I teach the children at church and I have touched on how we need to not just believe something because we like it, or because we want it to be true, or because someone told us it was true, but only because we have found it as true, as real. Believe something because it is true and you’ve encountered the truth of it, not because of any other reason. My husband, a pastor, says this too to people. We aren’t trying to trick anyone into joining our church or belief, we want them to find what is true and we believe we have, but our belief won’t help them, they need to search it out and see if it makes sense, works, and all that.

BoomSlang “To me, that is ideal, but sadly, that's not at all what happens. Children are not taught how to think; they're taught what to think...i.e..brainwashing.”

I believe people need to be taught how to think so that no one can tell them what to think. I’m big on that. I think the replacement of the classical education with skill based education might have made a better workforce, but an ignorant and gullible population.

Boom “Some things are so basic, logical, and self-evident, that they go without saying.”

Not all think logically so it helps to say them to make sure we are on the same page

Karla said...

Boom “An O-P-I-N-I-O-N.

Whatever "God" says is just its opinion, Karla.”

An opinion is something that someone asserts about something, but isn’t necessarily in line with what is true. It’s what they think, not what necessarily is. God would be Truth Himself. He would be the true eternal being, so His Words, aren’t His opinion on things, He’s all knowing, all wise, His words are truth. If He created all, it stands to reason that He would know all truth about it all.

BoomSlang “You see, you keep failing to grasp that if this "God" that you speak of is defined as "Perfect", as in, if Perfection is intrinsic to its nature, then literally, nothing it says or commands could be imperfect, in which case, it could command its "creation" to do all sorts of dispicable things to each other(just as it does precisely this in the bible), and you would have no choice but to see it as "Perfectly Moral", which is why you are defending this "God" as we speak.....”

Hang on a sec. I see what you are driving at, but I think there is more to consider here. God to be God would be the greatest possible Being. Self-sustaining. Self-existent. Eternal. Perfect. Good. All powerful. Unchanging. If He needed to change to be something else, He would not be perfect for He would have need and having need isn’t perfection and self-sustaining. He would be less than the greatest possible being, and thus not be the Biblical God.

It would probably be easier to refer you to the post I have previously written on this then to type it all again here. Look under important reads on the top right of my blog and see Euthyphro Problem--Is God Good?


BoomSlang “Wrong. "Goodness" exists independently of "God".”

Where?

Karla “Something not good doesn’t become good because He does it.”

BoomSlang “So unless you misspoke, you are now conceding that "good" exists outside of what "God" does.”

Nope. Read the post I did on this topic and see if that clears up what I am saying.


BoomSlang “Let's be sure: If "God" ordered our troops to, "Dash the infidel's children against the rocks!!", help me understand---would that be "good", or "not good"???????”

You keep brining that up. Thing is we can’t get to the answer of that, until we establish the source or standard of “good.”


Again, when/if someone is being "punished", it isn't done for the sake of "compassion"; it is done in an attempt to seek "justice".

BoomSlang “On another note, the whole point of "punishment" is to teach a lesson/be a deterant. Therefore, a "punishment" that does NOT end isn't a punishment at all; it is simply torture.”

If you look at wrong doing as only the breaking of the laws of the land, then punishment is only a deterrent. But if wrong doing is more than that, maybe punishment is more than that too. We’ll have to establish where good comes from before we can establish what to do about violations of that good.


BoomSlang “NO, "grace and love" most certainly do *not* "fix" the problem of "evil". For "evil" to be "fixed", it would have to be eliminated. A termite specialist hasn't "fixed" the problem until/unless he eliminates the termites.”

Evil needs to be eliminated? But I thought you wanted God to have compassion on all people despite the problem of evil.

Karla said...

BoomSlang “Your excuse for why "God" refuses to eliminate "evil" is because he is being "patient". I find that to be a non-reason(as well as ridiculous). I offer that rather than there being some omnipotent, omnipresent, omnibenevolent "God" who sits back and does nothing about "evil" because he is being "patient", that there is no such being.... no "evil, no "sin", no "angels", no "devils", no "heaven", no "hell"---it is all legendary myth.”

It’s not my excuse, but anyway. . . What if wiping out the evil now does more harm than good? What if waiting is brings about more good and protects more people?

BoomSlang “Notwithstanding, the "evil"("sin") that you speak of is only being pardoned; it is not being "fixed"--assuming that your worldview is actually true.”

Oh, no it is being more than forgiven. We are given His righteousness, it is being fixed at the root of matter, the old nature dies in us when we receive His righteousness, His eternal life, Himself. It can’t stay where He is. The “born again” comes from this happening and then we learn to walk according to the new nature. That’s another story. We’ll get to that if you want if you stick around.


BTW, post is up about "spirit" just informational. I probably won't have much blogspot time until Monday after this. Have a good weekend.

boomSLANG said...

Me, previously: "...through what means and methods would you suggest that they determine one from the other?"

Karla: Well when I am talking about truth with you here I am talking about eternal truths not just informational knowledge. I say we recognize this truth both with our mind and our heart. But when I say heart, I am not talking about the organ, nor just emotions. It’s like when we really experience something as true either by tangibly encountering something as true, or discovering it through logic and reason...

The current evidence shows that the brain is the one and *only* place in the human species where "logic and reason" are generated/processed. You are once again trying to use the word "heart" in some sort of metaphorical context, while trying to make a distinction between what occurs in the mind, and what supposedly occurs some other "place". You have not proven your case.

And Karla---REPEAT: Something that is "tangible" can be put forth as EVIDENCE. If you do not have any evidence that we can examine, then would you please refrain from describing your "experiences" as being "tangible"? That is being dishonest.

I think doctrine is a way not the way to point to the truth, like a map points to a treasure. But someone could find the treasure without the map, if someone else who already found it guides them or if the one who buried the treasure guides them.

As you know, there's more than one religious doctrine that claims to know where the "treasure" is. Moreover, a "treasure map" is a poor analogy to begin with, because if a pirate claims to have a map to a hidden treasure, he could go uncover and produce said treasure, thus, proving that his map was correct. You cannot prove that your "map" points to any "treasure".

No. You have misunderstood that. I believe the contents of the Bible are true, but I do not believe that it is all encompassing of all knowledge on all things. There is much it doesn’t cover. It’s not about doctrine, or the Bible. It’s about the person the Bible points to.

Yet, in the end, if all one needs in life is to know this, um, "person"(still waiting on you to give a profile of this "person", BTW), then this is more or less saying that being ignorant when it comes to other things is besides the point. If people go through life believing the lie that the earth is geocentric, "so what?"...as long as they know "Jesus".

boomSLANG said...

Karla: “I think we both agree that truth is better than falsehood..”

Me: “Yes.”

Karla: Good, we have some common ground there.

I wonder if we could find one human being that would disagree with said axiom?

Me, previously: “That would be fine and dandy, *provided*, you don't encourage that they take ideological or doctrinal approach.”

Karla: Do my answers above sufficiently address this?

No, they most certainly do not, for the reasons I gave.

Yes, we do believe that God is the source for all of this and that the Bible is true and points to God and all that. But we were talking about a person who doesn’t believe this, so that person needs to discover that truth and not believe it because someone else tells him it’s true. That person needs to encounter the reality of God for himself and find that God has revealed knowledge to us through the Bible and is revealing himself still in the present day.[emphasis added]

There is false information in the bible, Karla. It is by no means inerrant, and millions of Christians concede this, and it doesn't harm their "faith" one single bit.

Also, since "God is being patient", in other words(your words), *not* revealing himself to everyone, then you should probably stipulate this when you make such statements. If the "God" of the Christian bible exists, it is *NOT* revealing itself to everyone.
So I encourage people to seek out God for themselves to encounter Him for themselves.

You cannot "encounter" someone who is admittedly holding out for its own supposed "reasons". It takes two willing participants.

I can’t make that happen, I’m not going to try and trick anyone into thinking they have encountered Him.

People trick themselves; they don't need your help in that area.

I fully believe that if they seek ought the truth they will encounter Him and He will reveal Himself.

In other words, if someone doesn't "encounter Him", then they haven't sought properly or in earnest.

Actually I teach the children at church and I have touched on how we need to not just believe something because we like it, or because we want it to be true, or because someone told us it was true, but only because we have found it as true, as real. Believe something because it is true and you’ve encountered the truth of it, not because of any other reason. My husband, a pastor, says this too to people. We aren’t trying to trick anyone into joining our church or belief, we want them to find what is true and we believe we have, but our belief won’t help them, they need to search it out and see if it makes sense, works, and all that.

It sounds nice and all, but let's face it: Children, let's say, in the 4-9 age group, would rather be watching cartoons and riding their Big Wheels on Sunday morning. It is parents who get their children to church, and I don't for one second believe that these children haven't already been told that it's all "true" before they set foot in Sunday "School".

Karla said...

BoomSlang “It sounds nice and all, but let's face it: Children, let's say, in the 4-9 age group, would rather be watching cartoons and riding their Big Wheels on Sunday morning.”

Actually no. One child in particular in our class was spending the night at a friends house. Her friends mother told her she could stay with them instead of being picked up by her parents for church, she got up and got herself ready and insisted her parents pick her up for church.

The other children all love church too. They are usually disappointed with their parents don’t take them. They tell me.


BoomSlang “It is parents who get their children to church, and I don't for one second believe that these children haven't already been told that it's all "true" before they set foot in Sunday "School".”

Actually most of them come from homes where they aren't taught any of these things. We do teach them it is true, but we also teach them that things aren’t true because you believe in them. Or because your parents or us tell you they are true. We teach them that they can hear from God themselves and they don’t have to take our word for things. These kids have prayed for the sick and seen them healed. They know the reality of what we teach them. The teenagers in our church also. They get so excited when they pray for one of their friends they brought to church and the kid gets healed after they pray for him. Amazing stuff happens all the time.

boomSLANG said...

Actually no. One child in particular in our class was spending the night at a friends house.

One child, Karla?

Her friends mother told her she could stay with them instead of being picked up by her parents for church, she got up and got herself ready and insisted her parents pick her up for church.

I never said that adults aren't capable of making "church" a fun environment for kids, just like home.
The point I'm making, Karla, is that kids in a young age-bracket prefer fun things over things like long drawn-out sermons that they don't even understand. This is where the "fun" comes in---adults use things and ideas that kids can relate to. They entice them.(i.e..manipulate them) They're taught cute little songs about how "Jesus loves the the little children of the world". Of course, they leave out the part about how thousands of children die of starvation by the week in a far away land. They learn that in *real* school.

We teach them that they can hear from God themselves and they don’t have to take our word for things. These kids have prayed for the sick and seen them healed. They know the reality of what we teach them. The teenagers in our church also. They get so excited when they pray for one of their friends they brought to church and the kid gets healed after they pray for him. Amazing stuff happens all the time.

Sure it does, Karla. It happens in Mosques and Temples all across the globe. The same dynamic applies: Power of suggestion. It can make virtually anything "true" if you want it to be true bad enough. Just have "faith".

Speaking of... I saw some of the Todd "the real deal" White videos. He admits there's never been a case of an amputated limb that has grown back after he "prays" for them. Coincidence, right?

Karla said...

BoomSlang “One child, Karla?”

We are a small church, we started it not too long ago.


BoomSlang “I never said that adults aren't capable of making "church" a fun environment for kids, just like home. The point I'm making, Karla, is that kids in a young age-bracket prefer fun things over things like long drawn-out sermons that they don't even understand.”

We don’t have long drawn out sermons. You are making a lot of assumptions. In fact we are pretty interactive. People (including the kids) are free to interrupt with questions or comments during the message.


BoomSlang “ This is where the "fun" comes in---adults use things and ideas that kids can relate to. They entice them.(i.e..manipulate them) They're taught cute little songs about how "Jesus loves the the little children of the world".”

Not in our church.

BoomSlang “Of course, they leave out the part about how thousands of children die of starvation by the week in a far away land. They learn that in *real* school.”

Actually we talk a lot about our friends in Africa and the orphanage there and the disease and needs they have there. The kids are not kept in the dark.


BoomSlang “Sure it does, Karla. It happens in Mosques and Temples all across the globe. The same dynamic applies: Power of suggestion. It can make virtually anything "true" if you want it to be true bad enough. Just have "faith".”

You don’t know much about Islam, I gather? They don’t practice miracles and healing like Christians do. You are still making a lot of assumptions.

BoomSlang “Speaking of... I saw some of the Todd "the real deal" White videos. He admits there's never been a case of an amputated limb that has grown back after he "prays" for them. Coincidence, right?”

Yeah, these guys are honest. They will tell you about the people they haven’t seen healed, as much as they will tell you about those they have. I never said he saw a limb grow back. I’m going to be a part of something next week where Todd White will be. I’ll see what happens. Believe me, even though I believe in miracles, I am careful not to report anything that I don’t see verified.

boomSLANG said...

We don’t have long drawn out sermons.

I didn't say you did. Why can't you acknowledge the point I'm making? Here, let me simplify it even more:

Kids prefer fun things over things that aren't fun.

I'm not making accusations about your church. Perhaps your church is the exception to the rule---I'm skeptical, but perhaps it's true. In any event, the notion that your church teaches the "Right Way" isn't anything you could prove, so...

People (including the kids) are free to interrupt with questions or comments during the message.

Do many kids interupt when the subject of "Hell" comes up? Like, "Why, if Jesus loves me, would I end up in hell, Ma'am?" Or do you withhold that information for when they are more grown-up? I'm not being antagonistic---it's a serious subject and a serious question: Do you teach children as young as 4, 5, 6, 7 about "Hell"?

Actually we talk a lot about our friends in Africa and the orphanage there and the disease and needs they have there. The kids are not kept in the dark.

Then good, that's admirable. Do the kids want to know why Jesus isn't ending the famine there, or anything like that?

You don’t know much about Islam, I gather?

Well, I know that it's "faith"-based, and therefore, unprovable, just like all religions(yes, yours, too)

They don’t practice miracles and healing like Christians do.

I didn't say they "practice miracles", Karla. They *believe* in Miracles, and it isn't "Jesus" who they believe is granting them:

Click here for a Real Miracle!

Another!

Praying to God for Miracles!

Karla said...

BoomSlang “Kids prefer fun things over things that aren't fun.”

And church can’t be fun? I have fun at church.

BoomSlang “I'm not making accusations about your church. Perhaps your church is the exception to the rule---I'm skeptical, but perhaps it's true. In any event, the notion that your church teaches the "Right Way" isn't anything you could prove, so... “

We don’t teach a way any different than all the other churches out there. We just preach Jesus.

BoomSlang “Do many kids interupt when the subject of "Hell" comes up? Like, "Why, if Jesus loves me, would I end up in hell, Ma'am?" Or do you withhold that information for when they are more grown-up? I'm not being antagonistic---it's a serious subject and a serious question: Do you teach children as young as 4, 5, 6, 7 about "Hell"?”

Actually atheists talk about hell more than any Christians I’ve encountered. Jesus didn’t even talk about it, I think he mentioned it once or twice in the Gospels. The Bible doesn’t even say much about it. We preach Jesus, it’s that simple. We don’t scare anyone into believing. I can’t recall a time we have talked about hell to them. It’s not because we are keeping it from them, it just hasn’t come up, at least when I am teaching. I don’t know about the other teachers.

BoomSlang “Then good, that's admirable. Do the kids want to know why Jesus isn't ending the famine there, or anything like that?”

I haven’t heard them ask that. They do know that when my husband visited them there were some miracles of healing there among the Kenyans. They also know that cholera is sweeping through there and that people are sick and need food.

You don’t know much about Islam, I gather?

BoomSlang “Well, I know that it's "faith"-based, and therefore, unprovable, just like all religions(yes, yours, too)”

You talked about Muslims also believing in miracle healings. I may be wrong, but I don’t think that is something their faith believes in.

BoomSlang “I didn't say they "practice miracles", Karla. They *believe* in Miracles, and it isn't "Jesus" who they believe is granting them:”

Actually no. They only believe that Jesus was a prophet, a man. They do not believe in His bodily resurrection. I’m not sure if they believe he did any miracles or not.