Heaven and The Problem of Evil
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26-11-2013, 01:53 PM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
(26-11-2013 01:49 PM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(26-11-2013 12:22 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  Dude. It is a flying monkey thread, so why are you so invested?

I'm not, but one particular monkey needed to be put back in it's cage... Drinking Beverage

What about the monkey that you kinda believe in heaven, huh? Let's talk about that monkey. Tongue

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26-11-2013, 05:09 PM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
(26-11-2013 11:08 AM)alpha male Wrote:  Interesting that you didn't respond to my pet peeve.

Because your pet peeve is based on your misunderstanding.
Atheists don't use the Bible as evidence against God, but as evidence against belief in God being a rational position.

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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26-11-2013, 11:15 PM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
(26-11-2013 01:53 PM)houseofcantor Wrote:  
(26-11-2013 01:49 PM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  I'm not, but one particular monkey needed to be put back in it's cage... Drinking Beverage

What about the monkey that you kinda believe in heaven, huh? Let's talk about that monkey. Tongue

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I see no monkey here... Drinking Beverage

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11-12-2013, 12:37 PM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
I wanted to address this here, in the thread where we originally discussed the idea. Your answer to what [reasons] are is that God wants to have relationships with us, and that is what justifies suffering on this earth. In another thread, today you said:

(11-12-2013 10:56 AM)alpha male Wrote:  My position is that the majority of people are saved, based on an age of accountability doctrine. That doctrine doesn't require them to be Christians. You're misstating my position.

Estimates of total miscarriage rate from conception are as high as 70%. If life begins at conception and the age of accountability doctrine is accurate, yes, a majority of people are saved, despite the position that a majority of those who make it to adulthood are condemned.

So, you are counting fetuses with souls among those who go to heaven. Do they get to have a relationship with God? Do they enjoy heaven as much as people who lived until adulthood on earth?
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11-12-2013, 12:48 PM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
(11-12-2013 12:37 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  So, you are counting fetuses with souls among those who go to heaven. Do they get to have a relationship with God?
Yes.
Quote:Do they enjoy heaven as much as people who lived until adulthood on earth?
Can't say for sure, but that seems like a possibility. Two passages that come to mind are:

1. The parable in which the debtor with the greater amount forgiven had the greater love for the creditor.

2. Jesus is said to have been made perfect through suffering.
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11-12-2013, 02:09 PM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
(18-11-2013 09:39 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  One thing I've realized that I seldom see Christians talk about in any detail is heaven. Now, the Bible only gives us glimpses into what heaven is supposed to be, but it doesn't seem to be talked about other than in the most vague sense imaginable. I've noticed this both back when I believed and after I stopped. The only consistent thing I hear about it is that there is supposed to be no suffering. Now, how that is achieved differs from person to person. You might think that you'd feel sad thinking about loved ones that ended up in hell, but some people suggest that you are simply incapable of thinking about it (some go so far as to say your memory of those people is erased). Also, there is no sin or suffering in heaven, and certainly, no one is hurting anyone up there.

Now, that can conjure up some odd mental images, but where it really gets weird is how any imagining of heaven mixes with the most common forms of theodicy and modern apologetics.

There are a lot of different ways to try and solve the Problem of Evil, but the most common ones you hear about these days are Free will, you have to know dark to appreciate light, and the best of all possible worlds. Lets look at those in depth a bit in context with heaven.



Free Will:
Free will has always been a big deal for the Abrahamic religions. Many consider it the cause of all of our current suffering and the justification for the existence of hell. You can ask why God has to work under this framework and why it's necessary for us to be able to be this terrible for God's great plan, but rest assured that this is because of [reasons]. Sometimes, people speculate that this is because God needs to know that we really love him, so we have to be able to love him on our own, and that this isn't super creepy or narcissistic because of [more reasons]. I'm starting to get off track, but what's important is that free will is really important.

So, the believers all die and go to heaven (yay!) and everything is wonderful beyond all imagination. Also, they are being nice to each other, because if they weren't, it wouldn't be wonderful. So, are they able to sin or be mean to each other? Do they still have their free will? Yes or no?

Yes: Yes, they still have their free will, but they never make bad decisions. What the fuck?! Why couldn't God have made us this way in the first place? And before you say "well, only the good people go to heaven, so of course they behave themselves", according to the Bible there are no people on this planet who are without sin. It's not like they are already that good or anything. There's obviously some type of transformation going on here, and YHWH is clearly holding back on Earth. So, this leads to the conclusion of unnecessary suffering.

No: What the fuck!? I thought that free will was super important to justify The Problem of Evil because of [reasons]. This answer just invalidated this approach of theodicy on first principles.



You have to know dark to appreciate light/The best of all possible worlds:
(I'll combine these two here, because they work similarly when discussing heaven)

So, the idea here is that God faces some sort of limitations (because [reasons], of course) and that we have to suffer here before we can enjoy heaven there. It's a rather convenient Post Hoc justification, but it is what it is. The point is, we suffer some finite amount here so we can enjoy heaven infinitely there. Now, this seems like a bit of a math failure regarding how finite and infinite numbers work, but whatever. Now this leads me to an important question: does the amount we suffer in this life in any way impact our enjoyment of heaven (for all eternity!)? Yes or no?

Yes: Yikes! As creepy as it sounds, the most optimal solution here is the torture the ever-loving crap out of ourselves/each other as much as possible for optimal bliss later. Lets hope we weren't wrong and there is no heaven! Also, why does an all-loving God "bless" some people with more suffering than others? This seems unfair. Is it [reasons]?

No: So, as long as we've "suffered", then that's good enough to get the most out of heaven? Then anything more is unnecessary and God is being unnecessarily cruel. Anything beyond having souls exist in human bodies for just baaaarely as long as needed and then killing them and sending their souls to heaven is gratuitous. What the crap, YHWH?

Of course, the obvious answer is that these two approaches are simply Post Hoc rationalizations for why we get the world that we live in and can observe while simultaneously talking about God and The Problem of Evil. It's painfully obvious that either the yes or no answer to the question above point to a world that is clearly different than what we have, so, if you believe that heaven involves no suffering, then you have to come to the conclusion that God didn't craft the world in the most optimal fashion (making the best of all possible worlds fail).



So, there you have it. As soon as you start imagining an infinitely wonderful heaven, the Problem of Evil rears it's ugly head again, destroying several hundred years of carefully crafted apologetics. I really with Christians would talk more about heaven in Bible studies and ask these sorts of questions.
Your conclusions are understandable given that you threw free will into the equation to begin with. Evil is simply the product of stupidity not the necessity for a free will. If I choose to eat a piece of dung, that is not because I have a freedom of will, it is because I am stupid.
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12-12-2013, 08:00 AM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
(11-12-2013 12:48 PM)alpha male Wrote:  
(11-12-2013 12:37 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  So, you are counting fetuses with souls among those who go to heaven. Do they get to have a relationship with God?
Yes.

If the stated goal is to have relationships, suffering is a byproduct of that, and miscarried fetuses get to have that relationship (with presumably less suffering), why not just do that, instead? Why doesn't God have fetus ensouling/miscarrying factories to make souls with which he can have relationships?

It seems like the justification for God wanting relationships is more of an ad hoc attempt to justify the world we live in (with suffering) rather than something to try and explain the best way for God to get what he wants. Within your parameters, there are better ways and God is not taking advantage of them.


(11-12-2013 12:48 PM)alpha male Wrote:  
Quote:Do they enjoy heaven as much as people who lived until adulthood on earth?
Can't say for sure, but that seems like a possibility. Two passages that come to mind are:

1. The parable in which the debtor with the greater amount forgiven had the greater love for the creditor.

2. Jesus is said to have been made perfect through suffering.

If they do enjoy heaven as much as we do, then any suffering we go through after birth is unnecessary, and God is not omnibenevolent. If they don't enjoy suffering as much as we do, one wonders why an omnibenevolent god would create a world where the majority of humans with souls are doomed to die in utero and get a lesser experience of heaven for all eternity.


(11-12-2013 02:09 PM)childeye Wrote:  Your conclusions are understandable given that you threw free will into the equation to begin with. Evil is simply the product of stupidity not the necessity for a free will. If I choose to eat a piece of dung, that is not because I have a freedom of will, it is because I am stupid.

While you possibly are right about people eating dung being stupid, I don't know how you equate evil with stupidity. The reason I have free will up there with evil is because a lot of Christians use it as the justification for why there is evil and suffering in the world.

Also, can people be stupid in heaven?
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12-12-2013, 09:28 AM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
(12-12-2013 08:00 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  If the stated goal is to have relationships, suffering is a byproduct of that, and miscarried fetuses get to have that relationship (with presumably less suffering), why not just do that, instead? Why doesn't God have fetus ensouling/miscarrying factories to make souls with which he can have relationships?
The stated goal isn't to just have relationships, it's to have deeper relationships.
Quote:It seems like the justification for God wanting relationships is more of an ad hoc attempt to justify the world we live in (with suffering) rather than something to try and explain the best way for God to get what he wants. Within your parameters, there are better ways and God is not taking advantage of them.
What are the better ways?

Quote:If they do enjoy heaven as much as we do, then any suffering we go through after birth is unnecessary,
Not necessarily. If they do enjoy it as much, it could be because they benefit vicariously from our suffering. So, my suffering is helping others, as Jesus' suffering helped me. Works for me.
Quote:and God is not omnibenevolent.
I never said he was, and have plainly said that he isn't.
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12-12-2013, 01:04 PM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
(18-11-2013 09:39 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  So, the believers all die and go to heaven (yay!) and everything is wonderful beyond all imagination. Also, they are being nice to each other, because if they weren't, it wouldn't be wonderful. So, are they able to sin or be mean to each other? Do they still have their free will? Yes or no?
Yes: Yes, they still have their free will, but they never make bad decisions. What the fuck?! Why couldn't God have made us this way in the first place? And before you say "well, only the good people go to heaven, so of course they behave themselves", according to the Bible there are no people on this planet who are without sin. It's not like they are already that good or anything. There's obviously some type of transformation going on here, and YHWH is clearly holding back on Earth. So, this leads to the conclusion of unnecessary suffering.

No: What the fuck!? I thought that free will was super important to justify The Problem of Evil because of [reasons]. This answer just invalidated this approach of theodicy on first principles.
Very good points.
And your question:" What the fuck?! Why couldn't God have made us this way in the first place?"
WE are not robots who are designed to do someone's will.
WE are intelligent beings who have an opportunity to make our own choices(WOW!).
If I am doing good because I am programmed this way I can not be responsible for my actions/choices. I can not have rewards.
When I am doing good because it is MY choice I feel happy(reward)
If there is no OPPOSITION there is no CHOICENo.
Do you want to be a robot who can not make OWN choices and be happy?

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12-12-2013, 01:16 PM
RE: Heaven and The Problem of Evil
(22-11-2013 08:24 AM)alpha male Wrote:  Again consider a judge. It would be benevolent of him to sentence a serial killer to eating a piece of chocolate cake and going on his way. However, most people wouldn’t consider that to be good of the judge to do (although the killer or his family might).

Now, take the same judge. He decides to let his own son be tortured and, well, sort of getting killed so that the killer can go free.

I don't think that many people would consider that to be good of the judge to do, either (althought the killer and his family might be thankful for ever). I actually think he might get locked in a psychiatric institution. Lol.

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