Jesus doesn't change people
Post Reply
 
Thread Rating:
  • 0 Votes - 0 Average
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
08-06-2015, 06:41 AM
Jesus doesn't change people
For many Christians, one of the main reasons they believe in Jesus is that he (they claim) freed them from a life of "sin" and gave them power to finally have some measure of victory over the sins they were dealing with. But at the same time, most Christians would affirm that while they're washed and cleansed by Jesus blood and not guilty any more in God's sight, they do admit they still sin every day in many ways.

How would you best explain and show to the average person that NO, "Jesus" doesn't change anyone? How would you explain the apparent positive effects "Jesus"/religion has on people who describe some miraculous conversion and victory from bad habits in their past?

I think I'd start out by pointing to the evidence of countless pastors and priests who've molested children or sexually assaulted other people - did Jesus change them? I've also known some people who became a Christian with a miraculous conversion story...years later go right back into what they were doing in their "life of sin" beforehand. I think I'd attribute any positive effect of religion to being a person in a time of crisis seeking to find some help and learning about religion and then thinking God is going to help them out of their sin...the positive effects of being in a moral, positive atmosphere instead of a negative atmosphere...the human ability to conquer bad habits (for those who don't slip back into old habits), etc. I think for people who say they continue to not "live in sin" anymore, it's just testimony to the human spirit to conquer certain bad habits or whatever when a person really puts herself/himself to something.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
08-06-2015, 07:57 AM
RE: Jesus doesn't change people
But Jesus DOES change people....


Apparently he changes them into sanctimonious assholes....


....

Nobody said it was a GOOD change..
Big Grin

.......................................

The difference between prayer and masturbation - is when a guy is through masturbating - he has something to show for his efforts.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 3 users Like onlinebiker's post
08-06-2015, 08:15 AM
RE: Jesus doesn't change people
It is not about convincing arguments but indoctrination so explanation won't work I would say. If one believe that he is better person thanks to some dead Jew then what you really can say? As long as belief is strong there is nothing to be done about.

The first revolt is against the supreme tyranny of theology, of the phantom of God. As long as we have a master in heaven, we will be slaves on earth.

Mikhail Bakunin.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
08-06-2015, 08:30 AM (This post was last modified: 08-06-2015 08:33 AM by Tomasia.)
RE: Jesus doesn't change people
(08-06-2015 06:41 AM)Learner Wrote:  For many Christians, one of the main reasons they believe in Jesus is that he (they claim) freed them from a life of "sin" and gave them power to finally have some measure of victory over the sins they were dealing with. But at the same time, most Christians would affirm that while they're washed and cleansed by Jesus blood and not guilty any more in God's sight, they do admit they still sin every day in many ways.

How would you best explain and show to the average person that NO, "Jesus" doesn't change anyone? How would you explain the apparent positive effects "Jesus"/religion has on people who describe some miraculous conversion and victory from bad habits in their past?

I think I'd start out by pointing to the evidence of countless pastors and priests who've molested children or sexually assaulted other people - did Jesus change them? I've also known some people who became a Christian with a miraculous conversion story...years later go right back into what they were doing in their "life of sin" beforehand. I think I'd attribute any positive effect of religion to being a person in a time of crisis seeking to find some help and learning about religion and then thinking God is going to help them out of their sin...the positive effects of being in a moral, positive atmosphere instead of a negative atmosphere...the human ability to conquer bad habits (for those who don't slip back into old habits), etc. I think for people who say they continue to not "live in sin" anymore, it's just testimony to the human spirit to conquer certain bad habits or whatever when a person really puts herself/himself to something.

What does morally change people? How does a man who is far from a good person, become a good person? By what means is one able to stop being a selfish, inconsiderate person, a philanderer, and poor father, and hope to become a good person, a good husband and father? By what means is one able to leave behind the abyss of his immoral life, and find himself fulfilled by a moral one? One thing is clear, to be a good person, is a hardly a matter of recognizing that one is far from it. It may be a start, but could just as easily lead to a life of perpetuating the same habits one so desires to break but can't find himself able to.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
08-06-2015, 08:58 AM (This post was last modified: 08-06-2015 09:02 AM by goodwithoutgod.)
RE: Jesus doesn't change people
First you have to put on your jesus glasses and don the blindfold of a believer so you can understand this illogical thought process…let’s take a peek…

Incarnation is continual in that our redemption depends on the reality that the eternal son of God came to us as a man. If he did not come fully down, then we are not fully saved (Dawson 5-6). Since Jesus became what we are, accepting our very humanity and God crossed the gap between human and deity, and he overcame our sin and came to live on our behalf. He chose to leave a faithful life that was beyond our capacity, but required by the Father.

The very obedience of Jesus led him to die on the cross as penalty for human sin. Not only did he die for us, but he gave us new life for salvation, and salvation depends on our continuing union with him. The Incarnation is basically a fundamental theological teaching of Christianity, based on its understanding of the New Testament. The Incarnation represents the Christian belief that Jesus, who is the second part of the triune, God, took on a human body and became both man and deity. This can be seen in the Bible in John 1:14: "And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us” (Bible – King James version – John). The Christians worldview is rooted in the incarnation of Jesus Christ, the belief that Jesus is God in human in one person (Mueller 141).Atonement is a theological theory which describes human being’s reconciliation with God. This atonement is basically the forgiveness of sin through the death and resurrection of Jesus.

This voluntary sacrifice by Jesus made possible the reconciliation between man and God. “God so loved the world, and gave his only begotten son” (Bible – King James version – John 3:16). This Scripture verse highlights the source of atonement by the very provision of God’s love. It is the love of God the father that Paul has in view when he speaks of him who “spared not his own son, but delivered him up for us all” (Bible – King James version – Romans 8:32). Surely God could have saved man by other means then allowing his only son to die, since God is all-powerful, other ways of forgiving sin were available to him. Some view the very necessity of his great self-sacrifice magnified his glory and enhanced the precise character of the salvation bestowed (Murray 12). Salvation requires not only the forgiveness of sin but also justification. Sin is the contradiction of God he must react against it with holy wrath demonstration of Christ on the cross is the ultimate demonstration of the love of God. The very nature of the atonement requires that it contains obedience, sacrifice, propitiation, reconciliation and redemption.

Obedience is a compilation of motive, purpose, direction and intention, of which Christ was the epitome of obedience and discharge of God’s will in its increasing demands leading up to his inevitable sacrificial death. Sacrifice is the removal of sin liability via the transference of liability itself. Propitiation; to pacify, and Christ’s propitiation to God was to deal with the wrath so that those loved would no longer be the objects of wrath, and God’s love would be eternal. Reconciliation is concerned with our alienation from God, and the inherent need to have that alienation removed. Redemption by Jesus’ blood, “Thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by thy blood out of every kindred, and tongue, and people, and nation” (Bible – King James version – revelations 5:9).

This atonement can be broken down into various theories, one of which is the satisfaction theory of atonement, developed by Anselm of Canterbury (1033 – 1109). Anselm posited that sin unbalanced the order of justice in the universe. Once a sin has been performed, something good must be done in order to restore the balance. For example, a sin is incurrence of debt to God, the source of order, and that debt must be paid through true repentance (Albl 271). The work of Christ is to repair the breach human sin introduced into the relationship between humanity and God. Anselm argued in Cur Deus Homo that this work can be accomplished only by a God-man; one person equally divine and human. This doctrine of Christ is commonly called “Chalcedonian Christology” because it was created by the Council of Chalcedon in 451 CE (Visser 213).

One cannot explain the incarnation by appeal to any supposed obligation on God’s part to respect the devil’s rights over humanity. Since the devil had no such rights, so it appears that God would not have been acting unjustly if he had just delivered human beings the power of the devil by fiat. What reason did God have to redeemed mankind and the way he did, given that he was not under any obligation to do so? Anselm suggests that since we know God’s will is never irrational, we can be confident that God had some reason for doing what he did, even if we do not see or understand what the reason is (Visser 214).

Anselm believed he could prove, by unavoidable logical steps, that Christ was removed from the case, as if there had never existed anything to do with him, is it possible that without him mankind could have been saved (Anselm 261 – 262). A foundation of Christianity is that Jesus Christ died on the cross for our sins (Bible – King James version –1 Cor 15:3). In this way he fulfilled the old covenant sacrificial system, reconciled us to God, and changed our lives forever. This is the doctrine of the atonement (Mattison 1). At this point the author makes a faith claim, or commonly known as a knowledge claim, by positing “its reality is not in dispute”. I must interject here the whole subject is in dispute, and has been the center of debate for centuries. The author’s mere assertion in a knowledge claim that the atonement “reality” is not in dispute does not make it true. It does however assert that the atonement theory is an essential foundation of Christian religious belief. The author goes on to say, “we know that the atonement works; but how it works is not as clear.” Again, a knowledge claim is made; we have zero proof that the atonement works, at best it is a comforting theory for the faithful to cling to in order to validate their faith to themselves.

The church leaders developed doctrine to reflect Jesus Christ’s fulfilling of God’s will through active obedience, vice his passive obedience through death. Basically, God requires mankind to obey and live a life of perpetual obedience (Mattison 1). This endless cycle of perpetual intellectual and spiritual slavery upon birth, where we continuously strive to bow and scrape in deference to our alleged creator’s self-centered will and ego, is hardly what a thinking person would presume a deity of such universe and life creating power, would be so obsessed with. What kind of immature supreme being would create all of this, create life, destroy life, send part of his own “body” down in the form of a man through immaculate conception, so he can die on our behalf to satisfy God’s ego requirement for sacrifice. I don’t purport to understand the consciousness of this alleged magical creature, but it is hard to conceive such childish, disingenuous manipulation of life for the entertainment of itself. This dramatic, over thought, contrite, anthropocentric theory must be the creation of man’s imagination. How could it be anything else?

In summary, this complex, dramatic Christian theological concept is obviously a fabrication of much thought, and introspective philosophy. Perhaps they could have put all that time and effort into something more constructive. Creating a subservient, subjugative crutch for people with low mental resilience, apparent inability to use reason and logic to comprehend the world around them, and wild imaginations seems unnecessary. In my opinion, religion and faith block the believer’s ability to utilize appropriate epistemological methods to process and gain knowledge.

Works Cited:

Mattison, Mark. “The Meaning of the Atonement.” Mark Mattison. 1987. Web. Retrieved from http://www.auburn.edu/~allenkc/openhse/atonement.html

Anselm, Evans, G. R., The Major Works. New York: Oxford University Press, Inc, 1998. Print.

Visser, Sandra and Williams, Thomas, Anselm. New York: Oxford University Press, Inc, 2009. Print.

Murray, John, The Atonement. Evansville: Presbyterian and Reformed Publishing Company, 1976. Print.

Mueller, J.J., Theological Foundations: Concepts and Methods for Understanding the Christian Faith. Winona: Anselm Academic, Christian Brothers Publications, 2011. Print.

Albl, Martin C. Reason, Faith, and Tradition: Explorations in Catholic Theology. Winona: Anselm Academic, Christian Brothers Publications, 2009. Print.

The Catholic Study Bible: The New American Bible 2nd ed. Oxford: Oxford University press, Inc., 2011. Print.

Dawson, Gerrit S. Jesus Ascended: The Meaning of Christ’s Continuing Incarnation. New Jersey: P&R publishing, 2004. Print.

"Belief is so often the death of reason" - Qyburn, Game of Thrones

"The Christian community continues to exist because the conclusions of the critical study of the Bible are largely withheld from them." -Hans Conzelmann (1915-1989)
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 3 users Like goodwithoutgod's post
08-06-2015, 09:09 AM
RE: Jesus doesn't change people
(08-06-2015 06:41 AM)Learner Wrote:  For many Christians, one of the main reasons they believe in Jesus is that he (they claim) freed them from a life of "sin" and gave them power to finally have some measure of victory over the sins they were dealing with. But at the same time, most Christians would affirm that while they're washed and cleansed by Jesus blood and not guilty any more in God's sight, they do admit they still sin every day in many ways.

How would you best explain and show to the average person that NO, "Jesus" doesn't change anyone? How would you explain the apparent positive effects "Jesus"/religion has on people who describe some miraculous conversion and victory from bad habits in their past?

I think I'd start out by pointing to the evidence of countless pastors and priests who've molested children or sexually assaulted other people - did Jesus change them? I've also known some people who became a Christian with a miraculous conversion story...years later go right back into what they were doing in their "life of sin" beforehand. I think I'd attribute any positive effect of religion to being a person in a time of crisis seeking to find some help and learning about religion and then thinking God is going to help them out of their sin...the positive effects of being in a moral, positive atmosphere instead of a negative atmosphere...the human ability to conquer bad habits (for those who don't slip back into old habits), etc. I think for people who say they continue to not "live in sin" anymore, it's just testimony to the human spirit to conquer certain bad habits or whatever when a person really puts herself/himself to something.

jesus can change you but that depends if you really want the change. you have to be driven and hate what made you spiritually ugly. but jesus does help im a perfect example of this.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
08-06-2015, 09:29 AM
RE: Jesus doesn't change people
(08-06-2015 08:58 AM)goodwithoutgod Wrote:  It does however assert that the atonement theory is an essential foundation of Christian religious belief. The author goes on to say, “we know that the atonement works; but how it works is not as clear.” Again, a knowledge claim is made; we have zero proof that the atonement works, at best it is a comforting theory for the faithful to cling to in order to validate their faith to themselves.

Before you say there's zero proof that atonement works, we'd probably have to wonder about that thing that others are referring to as evident of it working. And here for the most part it seemed to be in regards to the changed lives of certain believers.

"I gang-banged, messed up, rolled queers. I’ve stuck the blade all the way in and felt a heart flutter like a pigeon on the end of my poker ‘n’ I felt no remorse. Until I found Jesus Christ” - the writer Richard Rodriguez recalling a testimony of an ex-gang member at Evangelical Victory Outreach Church.

To make the best use of a secular language, it's this sort of "moral transformation", that's the point of reflection for Anselm, of atonement working, the transformation of the lives of those early believers in the wake of Christ's death, though they don't particularly know why this had transformed their lives, they just know in reflection of it, it did. Anselm just like the new testaments and reflecting on the profound and transformative effect Jesus death and life had on them.

I don't think the why here needs to be appealed to magically. The death of loved ones, often has a profound effect on us. The martyr victim, folks of Rev. King, often illicit a sort of self-selfection and reconsideration on one's life, perhaps even changing one's own commitments to those things which are good, to the causes and sense of life these men advocated for.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
08-06-2015, 09:57 AM
RE: Jesus doesn't change people
This is one area where I tend not to "correct" people's view of the divine and supernatural. If you kicked heroin and you're doing your best to get your life together and be a parent to your kids, etc. and you want to believe Jesus helped give you the strength to make that happen, who would I be to try and convince you otherwise? I'd say that in most cases most people are better off discarding the supernatural and acknowledging that their own inner strength makes them capable of great things. But in some cases you've got to ask what's best for the person. If Jesus keeps them off smack and they're not using him as an excuse to belittle women, get ID in the Biology classrooms, etc. then I'm willing to give them a pass.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
08-06-2015, 10:17 AM
RE: Jesus doesn't change people
Here's how the church I grew up in sold it:

When you got 'saved' it was the beginning of a new start for you. You were not necessarily transformed completely but just escaping hell and the sin nature that you inherited from A&E (not the clothing store). But a (Jesus) seed was planted and as long as you watered it with the WORD and TRUTH and WORSHIP, it would grow. Eventually the "spiritual" you would become bigger than the "fleshly" you. They called this the NEW man vs. the OLD man.

I Cor. 15:31 says "I die daily" -- Don't you see this is the perfect answer to keep you coming back for more. When you have fleshly thoughts and desires (thought crimes) and are constantly asking for forgiveness (ref: building a hedge, found in OT) you take care of the issue in your "heart" before it becomes a problem in your "actions". Each time you do this it takes care of a layer of your "flesh" and transforms you. You become more and more like Jesus never actually reaching perfection, of course though. But how can this be measured? Who is to say I am better person today than I was 20 years ago because I have less "thought crimes"? It really can't be done. It's an abstract concept. And it's brilliant. You end up staying in the same trap constantly belittling yourself by thinking you will never measure up. So you just keep coming back for more Jeeeeebus.

I didn't answer your question but just as well added another viewpoint of how they get into your brain. Weeping

**Crickets** -- God
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
[+] 1 user Likes Tonechaser77's post
08-06-2015, 10:18 AM
RE: Jesus doesn't change people
(08-06-2015 09:57 AM)Mr. Boston Wrote:  This is one area where I tend not to "correct" people's view of the divine and supernatural. If you kicked heroin and you're doing your best to get your life together and be a parent to your kids, etc. and you want to believe Jesus helped give you the strength to make that happen, who would I be to try and convince you otherwise? I'd say that in most cases most people are better off discarding the supernatural and acknowledging that their own inner strength makes them capable of great things.

I think there's more to Jesus helping them than putting some magical powder in their soup. Because the sort of Goodness, the sort of life, that the believer here is striving to emulate and be a part of, is that which Jesus to them embodies, the model, the ideal, the representation of the Good. Zacchaeus sees Jesus as a man who has a fellowship with his community that he wants to be a part of, in which Christ extends to him as well. He repents and commits to amending his wrongs. Can he say this was the result of his inner strength? Of course not, because he was a man who succumbed to his weakness, but it was by the grace offered to him, that he's able to partake and become whole.

He cannot thank himself, anymore so than a man who puts a noose around his brother's neck, can thank himself for removing it.
Find all posts by this user
Like Post Quote this message in a reply
Post Reply
Forum Jump: