Discussion with a Christian
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13-10-2016, 07:50 PM
Discussion with a Christian
I've told my parents that I would talk to a Christian about my lack of belief as long as they understood their bible better than the average Christian. Pretty soon I will be meeting with a guy who used to be my parent's Pastor. He is intelligent and will prob be on a mission to convert me. He's not on a William Lane Craig level, but he's up there in terms of his bible knowledge so our discussion should be interesting.

I plan on approaching with, " What do you believe and why?. Why should I believe it?" Finally, I have some good arguments too incase they're needed. I will of course be open minded, but I don't want to get tricked either. Any advice?
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13-10-2016, 07:54 PM
RE: Discussion with a Christian
Yes, if you can, get Bart Ehrman's The Bible: A Historical and Literary Introduction. It's easy to read and sums up the entire Bible. If you learn about biblical history, you should be all set for this guy who I can almost guarantee will twist passages and take them out of their original context.
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13-10-2016, 07:57 PM (This post was last modified: 13-10-2016 08:04 PM by goldenarm.)
RE: Discussion with a Christian
(13-10-2016 07:54 PM)jennybee Wrote:  Yes, if you can, get Bart Ehrman's The Bible: A Historical and Literary Introduction. It's easy to read and sums up the entire Bible. If you learn about biblical history, you should be all set for this guy who I can almost guarantee will twist passages and take them out of their original context.

Great! Thanks! I will ASAP, but I actually just recently spent my money on "Christianity is not Great" by John Loftus and I'm currently reading that, but I will definitely read that book eventually.

Update: I just checked it out and it looks like some great information, but I can't get it mailed in because my parents wouldn't be to pleased lol. Do they have it at bookstores?
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13-10-2016, 08:10 PM
RE: Discussion with a Christian
In my experience Pastors are frequently the ones that know the Bible the worst, seminary schools teach you to approach the book as a devotional text and not a historical text which makes it really hard to talk to them about like...reality and stuff.

When valour preys on reason, it eats the sword it fights with.
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13-10-2016, 08:18 PM
RE: Discussion with a Christian
(13-10-2016 07:57 PM)goldenarm Wrote:  
(13-10-2016 07:54 PM)jennybee Wrote:  Yes, if you can, get Bart Ehrman's The Bible: A Historical and Literary Introduction. It's easy to read and sums up the entire Bible. If you learn about biblical history, you should be all set for this guy who I can almost guarantee will twist passages and take them out of their original context.

Great! Thanks! I will ASAP, but I actually just recently spent my money on "Christianity is not Great" by John Loftus and I'm currently reading that, but I will definitely read that book eventually.

Update: I just checked it out and it looks like some great information, but I can't get it mailed in because my parents wouldn't be to pleased lol. Do they have it at bookstores?

They might, you could call and check around. Loftus' book is a good one too. Thumbsup
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13-10-2016, 08:34 PM
RE: Discussion with a Christian
(13-10-2016 08:18 PM)jennybee Wrote:  
(13-10-2016 07:57 PM)goldenarm Wrote:  Great! Thanks! I will ASAP, but I actually just recently spent my money on "Christianity is not Great" by John Loftus and I'm currently reading that, but I will definitely read that book eventually.

Update: I just checked it out and it looks like some great information, but I can't get it mailed in because my parents wouldn't be to pleased lol. Do they have it at bookstores?

They might, you could call and check around. Loftus' book is a good one too. Thumbsup
Great! Thanks
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13-10-2016, 08:35 PM
RE: Discussion with a Christian
(13-10-2016 08:10 PM)WhiskeyDebates Wrote:  In my experience Pastors are frequently the ones that know the Bible the worst, seminary schools teach you to approach the book as a devotional text and not a historical text which makes it really hard to talk to them about like...reality and stuff.

Right. I see what you mean. I may be wrong, but this guy could be an exception. I will have to see how it goes though.
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13-10-2016, 09:13 PM
RE: Discussion with a Christian
Before you have your discussion with him, ask him to research how the bible came to be organized as a book and who decided which books would be part of the bible and which ones wouldn't.

Then ask him to research all the various intentional changes as well as the accidental ones that happened as new versions were copied. Of all of those different versions, which one does he believe is authentic ?

There has never been an instruction from a god to build a bible. Men did this of their own free will.

Insanity - doing the same thing over and over again and expecting different results
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13-10-2016, 10:22 PM
RE: Discussion with a Christian
(13-10-2016 08:35 PM)goldenarm Wrote:  
(13-10-2016 08:10 PM)WhiskeyDebates Wrote:  In my experience Pastors are frequently the ones that know the Bible the worst, seminary schools teach you to approach the book as a devotional text and not a historical text which makes it really hard to talk to them about like...reality and stuff.

Right. I see what you mean. I may be wrong, but this guy could be an exception. I will have to see how it goes though.

Too be fair I'm a total bastard and really won't ever let them get past my first question of "Do you have demonstrable evidence for your god?". I really can't be bothered to care about what qualities they think it has when they can't even show it exists.

When valour preys on reason, it eats the sword it fights with.
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13-10-2016, 10:30 PM
RE: Discussion with a Christian
Cut him off at the knees by stating unequivocally that the Bible is the claim and not the proof. Using the Bible to prove the Bible is a circular argument and you aren’t willing to debate its merits.

As soon as you say this it takes away whatever perceived power he draws from that sordid book.

Discussing the merits of scripture is a waste of time and a losing proposition for you, people and scholars have been dissecting the Bible for a thousand years and nothing has been gained. For those who believe it nothing will shake their faith, for those who don’t we find it horrifying.

Another tool in your arsenal is responding with such phrases as, “I don’t know” and “I’ll have to think about that”. Most of the time these will be the honest answers. I guarantee if you refuse to talk about Bible verses he’ll hit you up with questions regarding the beginning of the universe and how it came to be and other currently unanswerable questions, responding by saying, “I don’t know” and nothing else gives him no fuel for his fire.

Don’t try to be smarter, just be polite and uncommitted.

“I am quite sure now that often, very often, in matters concerning religion and politics a man’s reasoning powers are not above the monkey’s.”~Mark Twain
“Ocean: A body of water occupying about two-thirds of a world made for man - who has no gills.”~ Ambrose Bierce
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