Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
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23-04-2015, 12:28 PM
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
(17-01-2015 02:41 PM)Whimsymum Wrote:  I saw the title of the thread and my first thought was, "save me from what?" Save me from death? That'll never happen. We've all got to die someday. Save me from hell? The place that I have no evidence of. Who is suppose to be doing the saving?

I see your point. It wasn't really about salvation. More about those that believe in the concept (delusion) and the way that they treat people who don't.

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28-04-2015, 05:04 PM
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
(23-04-2015 12:28 PM)The Drake Wrote:  
(17-01-2015 02:41 PM)Whimsymum Wrote:  I saw the title of the thread and my first thought was, "save me from what?" Save me from death? That'll never happen. We've all got to die someday. Save me from hell? The place that I have no evidence of. Who is suppose to be doing the saving?

I see your point. It wasn't really about salvation. More about those that believe in the concept (delusion) and the way that they treat people who don't.

The "I'm saved" and "You're not" crowd. I see the effects every day.

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28-04-2015, 05:37 PM
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
(03-01-2015 06:46 PM)Stevil Wrote:  
(03-01-2015 06:16 PM)Free Wrote:  "Love your neighbor as yourself."
It's really an empty shallow feel good.

Resources are limited, we cannot love our neighbor as ourselves. We must compete. We must focus on ourselves, our family, our friends.
We cannot love others as we love our own family. When we earn money we do it for the survival and happiness of ourselves, we do not share our money and stuff equally with our neighbors.

But in reality we must also focus on our neighbors. It's not a "Christian thing". The betterment of society (as a whole) protects us and our family in the long view. Isolation is ignorance.

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28-04-2015, 07:05 PM
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
When it comes to the question of heaven, it's a fair bet that we all will all equally experience the same thing.

Oblivion

As far as the hypothetical goes, if a heavenly realm existed and if some ghostly essence of our mind exists after our bodies die, I don't see how anyone could keep everyone out, thus turning whatever heavenly realm into a free for all wild wild west.

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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28-04-2015, 08:32 PM (This post was last modified: 29-04-2015 05:41 AM by mordant.)
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
I think that the whole value proposition of Christianity is in jeopardy these days because it's based on concepts that no longer resonate with thinking people. Which leaves them with the thinking-impaired. It's not good news from an evolutionary standpoint.

Christianity has evolved over 2K years, of course, but not in any fundamental way since they kicked out the gnostics back near the beginning.

"Sin" is a contrived concept that tries to explain the human condition. I think that in the past couple of centuries, philosophy and psychology have rendered human nature reasonably explicable in ways that are far more descriptive and predictive than "everyone is bad and needs to repress their badness and beg / trust god for his goodness". Just as the gaps that god hides in keep getting smaller, so the inability to understand / explain and deal with mental and emotional health issues is getting less problematic. My theory is that, as dicey a proposition as seeing a shrink can be, it's no less effective than the structured self-flagellation and dependence on authority-figures that religion is.

And that's another problem with "sin" and "salvation" ... they are tools for controlling the sheeple. If I can convince you you're bad and defective and guilty and shameful and I have the remedy for that, then I can convince you to subscribe to my dogma. Except ... gosh, the Internet, and mass media, and rapid travel and communications systems, and public education, and libraries, all have other ideas compared to the days when most people never traveled 50 miles from home in their entire lifetime.

So to address the OP's question, I'd say the better question is, "can salvation be sold to anyone outside the echo chamber / reality distortion field of the shrinking church?" If you're outside Christianity, by definition, you're already not sold; at best you're an indifferent prospect who may or may be vulnerable and looking for an offered life preserver, at worst you're a disgruntled deconvert. Seems like a tough row to hoe, if you ask me, especially when your offered remedy includes large doses of shame and sexual repression and other killjoy ideas. That's why you have guys like Joel Osteen dabbling in lightening up the message and offering less stuffy-looking inducements. But I don't see that sort of thing catching on.
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28-04-2015, 10:54 PM
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
Eventually I see the church allowing everyone into heaven, as long as they get their monthly tithe.

And since its all fictional, it will be the church that changes the rules, but of course that change that they made was inspired by god.

All the changes they make are ultimately god flip flopping on his own objective morals. Go figure.

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29-04-2015, 06:01 AM
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
(28-04-2015 10:54 PM)Rahn127 Wrote:  Eventually I see the church allowing everyone into heaven, as long as they get their monthly tithe.

And since its all fictional, it will be the church that changes the rules, but of course that change that they made was inspired by god.

All the changes they make are ultimately god flip flopping on his own objective morals. Go figure.
Yes, but look at what has happened historically to denominations that went with universal reconciliation (UR) or similar doctrines that eliminate or greatly mitigate hellthreat. The Unitarians and Universalists merged in 1962 but the combination of UR, rejection of the doctrine of the trinity, and the lack of subscription to any sort of creed (much less traditional creeds) or any kind of doctrinal litmus test for members, has pretty much cast them outside of Christianity. Many of them are even expunging the phrase "the church" from their bylaws and replacing it with "the society" (they generally go by a name of the form "unitarian universalist society of whoville").

That's a fairly high price to pay. That said, the denomination grew about 15% during the last decade. But they are still relatively tiny, with a bit over 200K members nationwide, and they are somewhat regional, concentrated in the northeast where their roots are.

And that's just the most successful of the UR groups. Most of them are small independent congregations.

Christianity is a highly evolved set of interlocking and mutually reinforcing memes. Remove any one of them and you weaken others, to the point where the result is arguably not really Christian. To eject hell from the picture you have to eject original sin and utter depravity, which makes grace and sanctification seem less important, which tends to favor less literal and more metaphorical interpretations of the crucifixion and resurrection, which tends to expose the trinity for the silly doctrine that it is, which leads to questioning the exclusivity of the whole belief-system and wanting to be more "inclusive". And you end up with the Unitarian / Universalists, whose hymnals and sermons and classes are comically P.C., and the whole of it is indistinguishable from a humanist social club. Which it is.

Not that this is a bad thing from my point of view; I sporadically attend a UU church for the social benefits and the occasional actually interesting and useful information presented. But it is hardly a Christian church, it worships or proclaims no deity at all and in fact openly welcomes atheists and agnostics into its bosom. The main reason you might mistake it for a church is that it meets in a building with a steeple and has a pipe organ inside. But it's a fork from Christianity, charitably speaking, and really more like a new edifice built up from a dead branch broken off of Christianity.

If the salvation narrative goes away and takes that much collateral damage with it, such that what you have is at best post-Christian, then the question posed by this thread becomes superfluous. Eventually if this sort of thing catches on, people will get a quizzical look and ask what you mean by "saved". The UU church may have began with talk of UR, but UR is not even discussed anymore because it's assumed that either god is too good to condemn man or that man is too good for god to condemn. Even assuming you're a theist in the first place.
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29-04-2015, 07:33 AM
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
No. Because there is nothing to be saved from.
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29-04-2015, 08:34 AM
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
Saved from what.....
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29-04-2015, 08:54 AM
RE: Can Atheists (or anyone who is not a "Christian") be "Saved"
(29-04-2015 08:34 AM)Drunkin Druid Wrote:  Saved from what.....

^ ^ ^ ^

Exactly Thumbsup

Shakespeare's Comedy of Errors.... on Donald J. Trump:

He is deformed, crooked, old, and sere,
Ill-fac’d, worse bodied, shapeless every where;
Vicious, ungentle, foolish, blunt, unkind,
Stigmatical in making, worse in mind.
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