Email thread with pastor
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18-11-2015, 04:04 PM
RE: Email thread with pastor
(18-11-2015 04:00 PM)Nishi Karano Kaze Wrote:  Welcome to the site.

(18-11-2015 03:57 PM)Banjo Wrote:  Personally I do not understand how anyone could ever believe the BS about gods in the first place. So I have nothing other than this: Why are you emailing your old pastor?

Let it go. He talks BS for a living. Stay as far away as possible.

And welcome to the forum.

Damn mate. have your niece gotten you with the Frozen bug?

*Sings*

Let it go, let it go, something something. . . ehrrmmm. . . snow?

No but I bought her a Frozen necklace and two Frozen dolls.

Plus I just woke up. Do I sound harsh or something? Don't mean to.

NOTE: Member, Tomasia uses this site to slander other individuals. He then later proclaims it a joke, but not in public.
I will call him a liar and a dog here and now.
Banjo.
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18-11-2015, 04:07 PM
RE: Email thread with pastor
(18-11-2015 04:04 PM)Banjo Wrote:  
(18-11-2015 04:00 PM)Nishi Karano Kaze Wrote:  Welcome to the site.


Damn mate. have your niece gotten you with the Frozen bug?

*Sings*

Let it go, let it go, something something. . . ehrrmmm. . . snow?

No but I bought her a Frozen necklace and two Frozen dolls.

Plus I just woke up. Do I sound harsh or something? Don't mean to.

You didn't sound harsh so much as you sounded like someone who wasn't steeped in religion well into your adult life. Which just means kudos to you!Thumbsup

It was just a fucking apple man, we're sorry okay? Please stop the madness Laugh out load
~Izel
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18-11-2015, 04:08 PM
RE: Email thread with pastor
(18-11-2015 02:35 PM)NolaToad Wrote:  Christians will acknowledge that a lemon shark is related to a bull shark because their DNA is so similar. Yet they can’t say the same about man and chimps, even though our DNA links are much closer.

I didn't know that about the sharks. Very interesting!

Welcome to the forum.
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18-11-2015, 04:08 PM
RE: Email thread with pastor
His reply:

I appreciate your honesty about your conclusions (both how you've arrived at them how you now hold them). I'm not sure if you've lobbed me a softball with your question or if my response is lobbing it right back to you...something tells me it's the latter.

I believe God exists because Jesus lived, died on a brutal cross, was buried, and then rose from the dead three days later.

The facts that I've investigated confirm Jesus' existence; it is fact that he died on the cross (from biblical, Roman, and Jewish historical writings); and there are a myriad of people (many eyewitnesses) over centuries that have chosen to die rather than deny their belief in Jesus. I can't reason my way into thinking that those people were deluded or intellectually inferior. Some watched their families brutally tortured in front of them as tools toward denial. What would make someone do that? In addition to their steadfast faith in Jesus, it is reported that many of them experienced a particular and peculiar peace during these times with children encouraging their fathers to remain steadfast. Christians throughout the centuries have also been the ones to encourage a refraining from retaliation. I think this is the result of finding and submitting to a reality outside of ourselves, not from a self-determination to hold fast.

Yes, I understand that many Christians were tortured and died as a result of other people claiming to preserve the name of God. They thought they were doing God a favor. Research will also show that those who did the killing were those who hadn't studied the Scriptures accurately. They relied heavily on the interpretation handed down. In my mind this puts morality in the cross-hairs. Why did I know that I did wrong twelve years ago? It was handed down...when I was 4 and drew on the floor with a marker. As a result, my mother was very upset while my father was not that upset. Here's the interesting part to me...before I knew how my parents would respond, I hid the lines with a plant on a stand. Something in my genetic code didn't want them to see it. Why did I hide it?

I learned about the internal suffering at a very early age that wrong I had done would potentially cause. My wife's tears 12 years ago confirmed what I knew was wrong. Where did I get my sense of right and wrong? How can I prove the negative of wrong that I've experienced in my life since I was a boy? Is wrong a positive? Or does wrong in me point to a good that is not in me that I desperately long for? I've been trying to cover up wrong with good my whole life. Did I get that from the Catholic church, my parents, LCC, or did my upbringing confirm something already there?

If I have a moral disposition that originates from inside of me, why do I need to submit to laws of society? Can I find another society with which I agree and live out my life in accordance with those laws? Are we able to tell one society that they are wrong? Can we really tell ISIS that their caliphate is wrong?

If we willingly agree to submit to laws outside of us that are beneficial to our lives, are we not agreeing that we need an authority outside of us to bring about harmony in society? If we need an authority, why does societal law trump a law-giving God? I also don't understand placing the perception (and I would add insufficiency) of God's apparent immorality outweigh the laws that promote harmony within society. If I take Rome's rules for slaves (which were more barbarous than any other time in history...Jesus died a death reserved for slaves), in disagreeing with them, do I have to throw out the laws established for republics that we both enjoy in this country?

When I think of morality, I have motivation close by. What's my motivation for living a moral life? Why do I need to submit to someone else's definition of what benefits society? If I live in a society that I don't agree with but (based in secular humanism) I fight against because of my moral (or immoral) disposition...I must then be removed from that society for its benefit. Taken to this argument's extreme, my removal should be death. Then, who's to say someone cannot achieve a will to power that incorporates the extermination of inferior morality? Genocide becomes a catalyst for evolution.

I think we need an authority outside of ourselves which is above the collective morality that is inherent in all humans. I've posed many questions, I know, but my next question is about ultimate authority. Where is authority and how do we agree on it?
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18-11-2015, 04:09 PM
RE: Email thread with pastor
(18-11-2015 04:04 PM)Banjo Wrote:  
(18-11-2015 04:00 PM)Nishi Karano Kaze Wrote:  Welcome to the site.


Damn mate. have your niece gotten you with the Frozen bug?

*Sings*

Let it go, let it go, something something. . . ehrrmmm. . . snow?

No but I bought her a Frozen necklace and two Frozen dolls.

Plus I just woke up. Do I sound harsh or something? Don't mean to.
I have no idea. I just saw let it go and then my brain went of to do what ever it do.

But good morning. I should be going to bed.
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18-11-2015, 04:13 PM
RE: Email thread with pastor
Good night. Smile

NOTE: Member, Tomasia uses this site to slander other individuals. He then later proclaims it a joke, but not in public.
I will call him a liar and a dog here and now.
Banjo.
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18-11-2015, 04:14 PM (This post was last modified: 18-11-2015 04:17 PM by Imathinker.)
RE: Email thread with pastor
Good responses. I'm betting personal experience and Jesus changed my life.

Oops didn't see your last post...

A man should not believe in an ism, he should believe in himself. -Ferris Bueller

That's what a ship is, you know. It's not just a keel and a hull and a deck and sails, that's what a ship needs but what a ship is... what the Black Pearl really is... is freedom. -Jack Sparrow
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18-11-2015, 04:15 PM
RE: Email thread with pastor
NolaToad:

I love this thread so far. Thanks for sharing.
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18-11-2015, 04:15 PM
RE: Email thread with pastor
My reply:

I think to a degree you may have missed my point (or, more likely, I didn’t express it well). I wasn’t arguing that what you did was not wrong or immoral. I don’t even know what it was. My argument was that it had to be something innate inside of you that told you it was wrong. Immoral actions are those that harm others, and that’s true independent of any book or commands from a god. Indeed, the bible lauds repeatedly actions that any fair-minded human knows to be immoral, like wiping out entire populations (genocide), enslaving individuals, etc.

I just don’t see where Christians find their basis for morality. To claim it’s the bible, in my mind, is disingenuous because of God’s ordination of that which is patently immoral.

I'm more comfortable with them claiming the Holy Spirit shows their hearts what is right and wrong. But an obvious question is, what about those who don’t claim to know God but still feel right from wrong? For instance, murder is wrong in nearly every society, whether it practices widespread Christian faith or not. It’s not only against the law, but people are horrified by it. Why is that, if they don’t know your particular god? Morality, in my view, transcends gods.

Moving on, you mentioned the “fact” that Jesus existed. Many notable scholars (Crabtree, Ehrman, et. al) argue that events discussed in the first three gospels could not have occurred the way they are discussed. The census that required everyone to return to the town of his or her ancestors, for example, is an impossibility in an impoverished society where people lived hand to mouth. Besides, the Roman record makes no mention of it. The story of the three wise men being led by a star to the birthplace of Jesus is unrecorded by other star gazers of the time, who kept meticulous notes. Also, the Zoroastrian religion tells the exact same story, and it far pre-dated the birth of Jesus.

But that’s not a hill I’ll die on. Whether a person named Jesus existed 2,000 years ago, I can’t say definitively one way or another. But for the sake of our discussion, I’ll grant you that he did.

The real question is whether he was a god. You mention, as evidence of the deity of Christ, that people have been martyred over the years for their faith in him. There’s no doubt in my mind that anyone who would pay the ultimate price for their god believes in him strongly. But their deaths in no way add veracity to the argument that their particular god exists. Humans have died for their religion since the dawn of man. I think we’d both agree that the jackasses who flew planes into the World Trade Center sincerely believed in their god. Would you argue their sacrifice is evidence that Allah is the one true god?

Perhaps these men also had “particular and peculiar” peace. Certainly their hands were steady enough to man the controls on the jets.

Christianity is the popular religion in our society, and you and I have both been raised (some might use the terms indoctrinated or brainwashed) to believe it is true. My parents got “born again” when I was 12, and from then on, I heard that Jesus was the way to salvation and the afterlife. I attended a Baptist high school where that was pounded into me every day. Finally, at age 18, after a falling out with my friends, I decided to submit and change my life. I was welcomed with open arms by the youth group at (previous church), fit in well and felt like I belonged. Did I critically analyze that which I had accepted as the new governing principle of my life? Heck no. I gobbled it up with both hands.

Don’t you think there are Muslim kids who do the same thing? Or Hindu or Taoist kids? Christians want those young men and women to question their faith when they’ve never even looked critically at their own.

Who wrote the books of the bible? Did they even think they were writing words that would be revered as coming from the hand of god by future generations? Who decided those particular books were the word of god? Why should we put so much faith in those men? Why are there so many blatant contradictions among the books? Shouldn’t that call into question their unity? Why does the scientific record not support the biblical accounts of the creation of man, global flood, etc.? Should that matter?

Most Christians can’t answer these questions, and they don’t care to. They just know they feel good when they go to church and are surrounded by like-minded individuals. “People have believed this for centuries,” they ponder. “It must be true.”

Would you have become a Christian if every influential person in your life had been a devout Muslim?

I can answer that question for myself. If all my life, I had been told Allah was the one true God and I needed to submit my life to him, I’m sure that’s where I would have turned in that season of disappointment and loneliness when I was 18. I turned to Jesus because that’s what I had been told was the right thing to do.

My parents would have served me better if they had cautioned me against falling for anything based on hearsay. No one should ever let their entire lives be ruled by anything without first researching the soundness of the claims being made by its proponents.

I’ll close with this: What evidence do you have the bible is the inerrant word of God?

By the way, I think you’ll enjoy this video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RB3g6mXLEKk
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18-11-2015, 04:22 PM
RE: Email thread with pastor
His reply:

I would certainly be a Muslim if my parents and all the other people I love dearly had been Muslim. Our environment is crucial in our upbringing. To answer if I would have ended up a Christian requires faith presuppositions. I believe I would have still been a Christian because I believe God would have made himself known to me. I don't believe this as a way to not consider all the factors or evidence around me, I believe that in response to the evidence I've come across. I agree that many Christians don't genuinely seek to know answers to questions...and it's usually the ones who think the least who have the loudest mouths.

I like the video and understand how points can be given to opposing answers. I also cannot overlook that presuppositions usually accompany the comedy. If God does not exist, I have to believe right along with the arbitrary conclusions that are portrayed. But if God exists, I have to give room for a reasonable explanation because I cannot claim to have all knowledge of every experience of every culture that has ever existed on the earth. I would also take issue with several conclusions that are presented in the cartoon. I'm sure we'll get to them one by one as we proceed. It's helps me to have an understanding of the overall concepts that we're approaching before addressing particulars...thank you for your patience.

On the basis for my morality, I too may have not explained it well. I believe that my morality is in me...I was born with it. I have a basic, intrinsic knowledge of right and wrong. I don't need the Bible to tell me about morality. I don't need the Holy Spirit to tell me (per se). The Bible and work of the Holy Spirit confirm what is in me. I think everyone is born with the knowledge of right and wrong which is why cultures that have existed concur that murder is wrong.

It seems we have to make an intellectual leap to apply our understanding of morality with our cultural reasoning to the morality of cultures that existed millennia ago. A crucial oversight was made in the argument of the cartoon, it didn't take into account that the OT and the NT commands have a hinge in the person and work of Jesus...I would see this as a presumption that Jesus was not who he claimed to be. Pitting OT laws and NT commands against one another is intellectually easy. OT laws were insufficient and began with a plan to come to an end.

The OT covenant made to Abraham was given parameters in the Mosiac law to preserve a relationship between God and his covenant people (just like the covenants we have with our wives have vows to preserve the union). The law was given into a culture with norms that introduced God to his people in a way that would engender faith. Giving his full-orbed holiness in the commands may have caused them to abandon the relationship (in the same way we lead our children to understand right from wrong within the confines of their understanding at varying stages of age development). They were new to the God thing, and God gave them time to understand without choking. The laws were set up not as arbitrary rules to inflict dominance; they were established around God's relationship with his people. Laws that dealt with avoiding different animals were given to remind God's people that they were to reserve their hearts for God alone who chose them.

The consequences of breaking laws was also to preserve the relationship. When God is described as jealous over his people, he's not a teen jealous over his girlfriend talking to another boy...that jealousy reveals that his love is for himself not for the girl. The rise that we would feel if our spouse flirted with another man is based in our love for her and our desire to preserve the union. Are the consequences stark? Most certainly. I believe it's because God's love is that steadfast for us. I also think the consequences of broken laws point to God as the ultimate judge who possesses ultimate authority. For me, God supersedes morality and also makes sense of it because of how relational we are as humans.

If you don't mind me asking, what were the circumstances in your life that caused you to begin to research and look for evidence for/against God? My guess is that it was more than boring sermons...or maybe that was it...
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