Great Christian Fallacies.
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21-05-2013, 04:22 PM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.
(21-05-2013 02:24 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  
Quote:Are you trying to give your god credit for these? Will you also give your god credit for SIDs, cancer in children, victims of malaria, mental illness, starvation, blindness, polio, etc?

I can't debate with you since you're not actually listening. Your responses stem from an agenda that is separate from the issues at hand. I'm trying to give Dr. King and Gandhi credit, NOT God. Man has free will, tremendous capability and potential. Man has also cured a lot of blindness, malaria, polio, etc.

God is all-powerful but shares power, from the crucifixion of Christ to Apollo 11 to... As a parent, I can see the wisdom in allowing my children free will rather than constantly and always interfering/dictating/intervening.

If you can't understand this aspect of parenting, what is there to say? Perhaps that complaining about God you sound like a child who says they took the cookies from the cookie jar because the parent didn't care to place the jar further out of reach. Right?

Again returning to human suffering.
Have you considered the theory of reincarnation as perhaps assisting with the blatant anomalies of testing within a one life period?
This was Christian doctrine till the Council of Nicacea,round 500 C.E.
It was eliminated as it was seen to conflict with the doctrine of Grace
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22-05-2013, 12:34 PM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.
Quote:I absolutely understand that aspect of parenting. You do not need to give the 'free will' argument to me. Does a good parent let their child play in the freeway? Does a good parent let someone else take their child? Are you telling me an all-powerful god answers prayers, but then ignores three women held captive in a basement for ten years because of 'free will'? Maybe you are. If so, I understand your thinking and we have nothing further to discuss.

We have something to discuss, if you believe God should have allowed the free will of the captives (we will to be rescued from kidnapping) and disallowed the free will of the captors (God will stop them from doing something evil). Is that a level playing field, where some have free will and others have the illusion of free will?
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22-05-2013, 12:36 PM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.
Quote:Again returning to human suffering.
Have you considered the theory of reincarnation as perhaps assisting with the blatant anomalies of testing within a one life period?
This was Christian doctrine till the Council of Nicacea,round 500 C.E.
It was eliminated as it was seen to conflict with the doctrine of Grace

I have considered it. Just last week I was witnessing to an Asian person who spoke of reincarnation and I pointed out the increasing population of the Earth, demonstrating fewer souls becoming enlightened and more souls tied to the karmic wheel here. They said, "You're right." We ended the time with my gift to them of a gospel of John and their pledge to read it.

I do understand how the influence of apocrypha could have allowed reincarnation to filter into Christianity, but am reminded of this verse, "It is appointed unto people once to die, and then to come for judgment." That's clear, isn't it?
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22-05-2013, 01:10 PM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.
(22-05-2013 12:34 PM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  We have something to discuss, if you believe God should have allowed the free will of the captives (we will to be rescued from kidnapping) and disallowed the free will of the captors (God will stop them from doing something evil). Is that a level playing field, where some have free will and others have the illusion of free will?

That would not be a level playing field, no. However, the world is currently not a level playing field. I personally do not accept your 'free will' point as proof of how a god can exist and not assist the victims, while answering some prayers elsewhere. I ask you, again, to explain the following, now with the added context of free will:

1. Some children die from disease at an early age, some do not. Free will is removed; there is no choice for the child. Not a level playing field.
2. Three women are kept captive and abused by a man for ten years. The women's free will was an illusion; they were overpowered by a stronger opponent. You implied(?) god did not help them because he would have been imposing on the attacker's free will. Not a level playing field.
3. Some people are born with great intelligence, others are born with the mental capacity of a small child. Free will is wasted, as they cannot even perform simple tasks without help. Not a level playing field.

I look at the world and see no loving, caring god. There is too much contradiction between the god you describe and the world we live in.

I think it is Buddhists who believe that god(s), if they exist, cannot end suffering on this Earth. Do you believe that as well? Would you say your god cannot, or will not, end suffering on this Earth, allowing some to suffer horribly while others live wonderful lives in order to preserve free will?

If Jesus died for our sins, why is there still sin? If man was created from dust, why is there still dust? If Americans came from Europe, why are there still Europeans?
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22-05-2013, 02:35 PM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.
Quote:Some children die from disease at an early age, some do not. Free will is removed; there is no choice for the child. Not a level playing field.

Huh? What does the age at which one dies have to do with making free will choices in the context of life circumstances? I never said humans were omnipotent over disease or tornadoes or anything:

*A 10-year-old who dies had free will for 10 years, albeit not having true sentience for all those years as an older child does

*An 80-year-old had free will for 80 years

Quote:Three women are kept captive and abused by a man for ten years. The women's free will was an illusion; they were overpowered by a stronger opponent. You implied(?) god did not help them because he would have been imposing on the attacker's free will. Not a level playing field.

*We always have free will, why is that freethinkers do not study Maslow and self-actualization? They chose to attempt escape from their free will otherwise they'd still be missing! Free will does not mean freedom of action in all times in all circumstances and that people are omnipotent, it means "freedom of choice between given choices".

Quote:Some people are born with great intelligence, others are born with the mental capacity of a small child. Free will is wasted, as they cannot even perform simple tasks without help. Not a level playing field.

Forget mental capacity of adults, mere babies have free will. I remember sleepless nights with my kids. Smile

Quote:I look at the world and see no loving, caring god. There is too much contradiction between the god you describe and the world we live in.

Christopher Hitchens didn't see one either. Yet he said he received thousands of letters from Christians while he was terminally ill. All of them showed consideration for his illness and he said NOT ONE of them was condemnatory to him. Yet he persisted in saying in the same interview, "I can't see the love of Christ anywhere."

Now YOU are exercising your free will.

Quote:I think it is Buddhists who believe that god(s), if they exist, cannot end suffering on this Earth. Do you believe that as well? Would you say your god cannot, or will not, end suffering on this Earth, allowing some to suffer horribly while others live wonderful lives in order to preserve free will?

He will end suffering. He will also induce it. He has both free will and omnipotence. The suffering will be just, the ending of suffering will be liberating.

Look at it this way. We know that our own sin can cause suffering (drunkenness, addiction to gambling) and the sins of others can cause us suffering (the captors of the women, Nazis). (Sorry, had to invoke Godwin's Law somewhere.) Your statements about God ending suffering is kind of like saying, "Gee, it's tough in prison and prisoners suffer. Sure, they get three square meals, have TV and gym, but all they did was kill a few people..."

Sin = Fallen World = Suffering. We're talking Genesis 1, 2 and 3 here, but it seems to mystify and elude non-Christians. Why is that, do you think?
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22-05-2013, 03:09 PM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.

If Jesus died for our sins, why is there still sin? If man was created from dust, why is there still dust? If Americans came from Europe, why are there still Europeans?
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22-05-2013, 05:17 PM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.
PleaseJesus,
The Biblical God is portrayed as omniscient,knowing past, presnt and future. Is this what you believe?..not a gotcha by the way..
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23-05-2013, 09:11 AM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.
Quote:I never said that either. Is god omnipotent over tornadoes or diseases?

From the scriptures as I understand them? He isn't. Man is the steward. Man gave dominion in large part to Satan. The upshot of all this is the creation is subject to the second law of thermodynamics, death and decay, though we can see its beautiful sustainability and design overall.

Quote:Is that a 'level playing field' in your eyes? Yes or no. You don't have to justify it. I just want to know how you see that particular situation.

Same as above.

Quote:That's not an answer. Babies minds aren't developed. I want you to explain how free will is useful to someone with diminished mental capacity, and how that's part of a level playing field.

You've used the term "level playing field" (that I intended for all people have free will) to say "equality of condition", which is different. People die. 1/3 of pregnancies are miscarried, and another 1/3, aborted. Same as above.

If you choose the equality of condition, then all people must live the same length of time, in this instance. Perhaps they should all look alike, all have two male and female parents, etc. - yet free will is changing these dictates even now (some have two gay parents or guardians, some choose to single parent, etc.) Free will and genetic drift are two of the factors that make people different and unique.

Quote:That's not an answer. Babies minds aren't developed. I want you to explain how free will is useful to someone with diminished mental capacity, and how that's part of a level playing field.

Don't make me invoke Godwin again! If I have to tell you how "free will is useful to someone with diminished mental capacity" I'm going to quote Hitler and invoke Godwin. The mentally "disabled" are in courts right now to affirm their rights to be married, gainfully employed, etc. Again, Abraham Maslow, the father of moden SECULAR HUMANISM, said, "When you take everything else away, the last human freedom is the right to CHOOSE."

Quote:Nope. The suffering is unbalanced. Some do not suffer at all, others experience hell on Earth. Your words are a complete contradiction to what we see everyday.

Because not everyone suffers, and because Genesis blames the fall of man on two people and a talking snake.

The suffering is random, unbalanced, unfair, and completely compatible with a godless world. That is why the concept of 'necessary suffering' is difficult for Christians and non-Christians alike. I have many Christian friends who are struggling to rationalize this world with the god they though they knew. The internet, and expanded worldview of the information age, is a harsh dose of reality.

I think that you filter what you see in this world.

GREAT and true observation. Christians find immense comfort in the knowledge that EVERY injustice will be reconciled in Heaven and Hell, when God's will shall be enacted on Earth.

Quote:Even in your metaphors, everything is nice and balanced. You skim over some pretty heinous topics as if they're minor inconveniences to your faith.

Not at all, I'm just at peace with what I cannot control and involved in trying to help wherever I can help. When someone witnessed their faith to me, I asked why children had to suffer. "What's the worst scenario?" I was asked.

"A child is abused, wheelchair bound, has AIDS and MS, and lives in constant physical and emotional pain their whole life from their youth," I offered.

"And how long will they live on Earth?" was the next question.

"50 or 70 years in torment," I said.

"And how long will they be pain free in the next world?" was the response.
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23-05-2013, 11:30 AM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.
(23-05-2013 09:11 AM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  From the scriptures as I understand them? He isn't. Man is the steward. Man gave dominion in large part to Satan. The upshot of all this is the creation is subject to the second law of thermodynamics, death and decay, though we can see its beautiful sustainability and design overall.

I the design is poor, in my opinion, but that's another thread. The satan story only works in the context of your religion; satan sounds like a marketing campaign to let your god off the hook for all the bad in the world. You did explain your thinking; I guess I got what I asked for.

(23-05-2013 09:11 AM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  You've used the term "level playing field" (that I intended for all people have free will) to say "equality of condition", which is different. People die. 1/3 of pregnancies are miscarried, and another 1/3, aborted. Same as above.

If you choose the equality of condition, then all people must live the same length of time, in this instance. Perhaps they should all look alike, all have two male and female parents, etc. - yet free will is changing these dictates even now (some have two gay parents or guardians, some choose to single parent, etc.) Free will and genetic drift are two of the factors that make people different and unique.

No, it's not different. You cannot use terms like "fair, just, and loving" to describe your god and then in the same breath expect me to accept that some people live miserable lives and others live wonderful lives for no reason other than to pass an unbalanced trial. You cannot tell me we have freedom of choice and then in the same breath brush away things that we have no choice over at all, yet have dramatic affects on our lives. You are trying to distance your god from these things. You cannot. They are his creations. They are his responsibility. If this life is a trial and the stakes are eternal, there should be equality in the trial.

And shame on you for grouping cancer and genetic defects with appearance and parent genders to try and dismiss equality of condition as reasonable. Booooo. I challenge you to tell me, or perhaps a cancer patient, that they all have the same effect on a human life.

(23-05-2013 09:11 AM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  Don't make me invoke Godwin again! If I have to tell you how "free will is useful to someone with diminished mental capacity" I'm going to quote Hitler and invoke Godwin. The mentally "disabled" are in courts right now to affirm their rights to be married, gainfully employed, etc. Again, Abraham Maslow, the father of moden SECULAR HUMANISM, said, "When you take everything else away, the last human freedom is the right to CHOOSE."

Invoke Godwin. Spell it out for me.

(23-05-2013 09:11 AM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  GREAT and true observation. Christians find immense comfort in the knowledge that EVERY injustice will be reconciled in Heaven and Hell, when God's will shall be enacted on Earth.

Why do you think that is comforting? I don't find that comforting. I would say a child with cancer is an injustice. Will god reconcile his own actions?

(23-05-2013 09:11 AM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  Not at all, I'm just at peace with what I cannot control and involved in trying to help wherever I can help.

That's an excellent attitude, theist or atheist.

(23-05-2013 09:11 AM)PleaseJesus Wrote:  "And how long will they be pain free in the next world?" was the response.

That's the equivalent of saying "I know you're starving to death but I've got a sandwich in my pocket. Sorry, can't show it to you right now. I'll give it to you later though. I promise."

Everything you've described sounds, to me, like excuses you've made for your god to rationalize this world. Not very becoming of an all-powerful, omnipotent, universe-creating being, are they?

If Jesus died for our sins, why is there still sin? If man was created from dust, why is there still dust? If Americans came from Europe, why are there still Europeans?
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23-05-2013, 02:04 PM
RE: Great Christian Fallacies.
Quote:I the design is poor, in my opinion, but that's another thread. The satan story only works in the context of your religion; satan sounds like a marketing campaign to let your god off the hook for all the bad in the world. You did explain your thinking; I guess I got what I asked for.

Oy, I KNEW I shouldn't have mentioned Satan. I finished by saying the upshot of all this is there is suffering and decay... be certain that Arminians and Calvinists alike blame man, not Satan, not God, for the evil in the world. Isn't that the very sort of (we'll own the responsibility) that Hitchens preached?

Quote:No, it's not different. You cannot use terms like "fair, just, and loving" to describe your god and then in the same breath expect me to accept that some people live miserable lives and others live wonderful lives for no reason other than to pass an unbalanced trial. You cannot tell me we have freedom of choice and then in the same breath brush away things that we have no choice over at all, yet have dramatic affects on our lives. You are trying to distance your god from these things. You cannot. They are his creations. They are his responsibility. If this life is a trial and the stakes are eternal, there should be equality in the trial.

And shame on you for grouping cancer and genetic defects with appearance and parent genders to try and dismiss equality of condition as reasonable. Booooo. I challenge you to tell me, or perhaps a cancer patient, that they all have the same effect on a human life.

I hear what you're saying. I have a friend who is dying of cancer in hospice now. Another friend's (young) wife died of cancer last week. The Facebook messages were uplifting and life affirming. "Suffering" just doesn't mean to a Christian what it means to a non-Christian. It has purpose, meaning, even beauty. God is fair not "fair" and just not "just".

Quote:Invoke Godwin. Spell it out for me.

Read your quote again, "How is free will is useful to someone with diminished mental capacity?" It almost sounds like a justification for euthanasia, doesn't it? People with diminished mental capacity are people.

Quote:Why do you think that is comforting? I don't find that comforting. I would say a child with cancer is an injustice. Will god reconcile his own actions?

I understand that you would say it is an injustice. On what basis? It can't be suffering, because suffering is found in nature. Animals eat animals and make them suffer. Death is in nature. Cancer is a growth, and mutant growth is a part of evolution, etc. You can feel things about justice, cruelty, suffering and etc. Only you can determine if these are evolved survival mechanisms or soul searching.

Quote:That's the equivalent of saying "I know you're starving to death but I've got a sandwich in my pocket. Sorry, can't show it to you right now. I'll give it to you later though. I promise."

Everything you've described sounds, to me, like excuses you've made for your god to rationalize this world. Not very becoming of an all-powerful, omnipotent, universe-creating being, are they?

Is it a pocketed sandwich? I think it's the equivalent of "Life is hard now but you will be in Heaven for 1,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,00​0,000,000,000,000 years so have perspective." That's a LOT of sandwiches, isn't it?

And, if I may be so bold? This is not to frustrate or anger you in any way, just reflecting here. Isn't success in life almost universally based on denial and struggle first, reward later? I'm thinking of romantic, academic, military, pacifist, educational, etc. achievement. Why should God's universe be different than God's intervention in that respect?
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