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22-06-2015, 12:00 PM
Looking for Feedback on a debate I had on facebook
Facebook is probably not the best medium for a debate, but I wanted to see how well I would do and how well I could word my arguments. Some background the person I'm debating with is the wife of my Dad's brother, she has a masters degree in Christian Education, and her husband is a Pastor, she tends to post a lot of ignorant stuff on her facebook in bursts over long periods of time. Below is the text cleaned up a bit for easier reading, I left the first names intact, I'm Jeffrey, she is Rebecca


Rebecca: via GodVine
June 19 at 9:09am ·
So sad
(image here was a prayer thing on the charleston massacre)
Pray for Charleston
Send this FREE Christian prayer!
http://WWW.CROSSCARDS.COM


Jeffrey: So here is a question, If God is all powerful why didn't he stop the murderer from killing his victims especially in a house of worship? And wouldn't time better be spent trying to help the victims or working towards changes in society that would help prevent this in the future instead of meaningless prayer? And before you give me the free will argument excuse watch this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1BzP1wr234 (darkmatter2525 how God favors evil video)

Rebecca: I don't believe in total free will. I believe God has control and purpose in everything, even tragedy. "Gods ways are not our ways" Isaiah 55:8. A hard thing sometimes , God's sovereignty. Especially in your tragedy Jeff. There is comfort in knowing this for me.
Like · Reply · 1 · June 19 at 10:02am

Jeffrey: Really? What possible purpose could there be in the Murder of innocents, and I see that you are trying to appeal to emotion. I assume you believe that god is perfectly good? If he is perfectly good how can he allow evil? how can he allow the murders of 9 people? Especially in light of his supposed own commandment in Exodus 20:13 Thou shalt not kill?
Like · Reply · June 19 at 10:07am

Rebecca: No, I'm NOT appealing to emotion! I'm telling you the answers I find in the Bible. My emotions say why why why? God's ways are not our ways. I don't know His purpose in these killings. Evil exists and God has allowed it. He lets Satan do his work in our world today. There WILL be a reckoning someday though, Rev. 20:10, "and the devil, who deceived them, was cast into the lake of fire and brimstone where the beast and the false prophet are. And they will be tormented day and night forever and ever." God's timing.
Like · Reply · June 19 at 10:33am

Jeffrey: You did appeal to emotion by mentioning my tragedy, and that you found comfort in that gods ways are not our ways. Also you still haven't answered my questions how does a perfectly good god allow murder? a violation of his own commandment? As for eternal torture how can a just and perfectly good god sentence someone to the most unimaginable pain for eternity? Why would a perfectly good god even create such a place?
Like · Reply · 2 · June 19 at 11:04am

Rebecca: God did not say I will not let you murder. He said don't do it. You have asked some very good questions. God allows evil in our world. I can't explain that totally. He has a purpose. Some evils in my life have resulted in good things. Some have explained it that life is like a tapestry with dark threads accenting light ones. I sure didn't mean to hurt you Jeff re: your own tragedy. God IS good, but also holy and just. I am His creation, His rules ARE rules! He can handle your questions, have you ever read the book of Job?
Like · Reply · June 19 at 1:16pm

Jeffrey: So you don't see the contradiction then? god tells us not to do something, then either does it himself or commands his people to kill people in his name? how is that good? By the way this is called the special pleading fallacy. Why would he allow evil if he is all powerful, if he can stop it and chooses not to then he is malevolent. You didn't hurt me I pointed out the fallacy in your argument. Yes I have read the book of Job, and it proves even more so how god allows evil and he himself appears malevolent, he made a bet with satan that Jobs loyalty to god was absolute and then gave satan the power to do whatever he wanted to jobs property and to his family, and then god allowed satan to destroy all his property and then kill his entire family and servants. Then satan and god talk to each other again, and another bet basically occurs and god gives satan the power to afflict job with horrible disease, and do anything he wants to job short of killing him, then job was tortured to the point that he cursed the day he was born. Then for the next 34 chapters there is a back and forth conversation with his friends it appears with lamenting mixed in there as well. Then for the next 4 chapters god speaks about his power to job and is basically scolding Job. Then finally in chapter 42 god gives him twice as much as he originally had, but doesn't restore his original family, his servants, or original flock. If god is all knowing then WHY WAS ALL OF THIS EVEN NECESSARY? Do you not see how horrible the original act is? God gave satan the power to murder Job's entire family, his servants, destroy all his property and then to torture job. You can't see how evil that is?

Rebecca: No, it's not evil and yes, it is evil. Satan did the evil. He's allowed in our world. I don't know why God allows him to work. The book is not evil because it gives those of us who do suffer hope in God! It is a conundrum, yes. I choose to believe God is good. I know He's good because of what He's done in my life and in others' lives. I lost my faith for awhile when I miscarried my 5th baby. My daughter Ruth Ann. I was 5 months pregnant. Why did I lose a baby I wanted and loved while others abort their babies? God didn't let me down, He was there for me. But I felt He didn't protect my daughter. I came back to God because without Him there's only blackness and meaninglessness. He doesn't owe me explanations or anything. I owe HIM my life, my salvation, the very air I breathe!
Like · June 19 at 3:35pm

Jeffrey: Your argument is contradicting itself, you are saying it's not evil and that it is evil, its one or the other it can't be both. This is known as cognitive dissonance. Regardless of satan doing the evil or not, in the story of job that you referenced specifically all the evil that was done was at the permission of god to satisfy a meaningless bet by a god that is supposed to be all knowing, therefore god caused the evil to happen by giving satan the power to do the evil acts, if he is supposed to be all powerful and all knowing what possible purpose would the test serve? I'm sorry you miscarried that had to be a hard time for you and your family. On the abortion issue you brought up, why would god let a woman that can't afford to have a baby or doesn't want a baby get pregnant?
Like · 1 · June 19 at 5:32pm

Rebecca: Hey Jeff, sorry I left the conversation. I have an older phone and it dies more quickly than it used to. To get back to some of our disagreements, I was thinking you wondered why I asked for prayer which you find useless if I remember correctly. You advocated for action. I do believe in prayer for I believe that God hears and answers me. This is taught in the Bible, but is ultimately a faith thing. Action is good too, but prayer is something I can always do. Not sure what else I CAN do in this case. frown emoticon If you hear of a missions trip getting together to minister in SC, let me know. Btw, you seem to know a lot about the Christian Faith, have you at any time considered yourself to be a Christian?
Like · June 20 at 7:27pm

Jeffrey: Yes I was a Christian up until April of this year, At that point I took a serious look at what I believed to make sure what I believed was true. When I applied my reason and tried to find evidence for what I believed I found that my beliefs were completely unsubstantiated. The bible while an interesting piece of literature is deeply flawed and has at least 1000 contradictions and discrepancies. As for prayer, let me direct you to the NY times. Studies were done that compared 1802 patients in 6 different hospitals undergoing coronary bypass surgery, the patients were split into three groups. 2 groups were prayed for, the third group was not to act as a control. Then half the patients were told they would be prayed for, and the other half were told they may or may not be prayed for. The results were how shall we say....interesting the group that knew they were being prayed for actually had MORE complications than the group that wasn't sure they were being prayed for or not. 59% vs 51% complication rate http://www.nytimes.com/2006/03/31/health/31pray.html...

Long-Awaited Medical Study Questions the Power of Prayer - New...
NYTIMES.COM|BY BY BENEDICT CAREY
Like · Remove Preview · June 20 at 11:04pm

No Further responses at this point from Rebecca

“We can judge our progress by the courage of our questions and the depth of our answers, our willingness to embrace what is true rather than what feels good.”
― Carl Sagan
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22-06-2015, 12:51 PM (This post was last modified: 22-06-2015 12:56 PM by Tonechaser77.)
RE: Looking for Feedback on a debate I had on facebook
Here are some issues I have:

Quote:I believe God has control and purpose in everything, even tragedy. "Gods ways are not our ways" Isaiah 55:8. A hard thing sometimes , God's sovereignty.

Prove that god has control over everything? Prove that he has purpose in all of it? You can't. If you go to the bible for proof, how do you prove the bible is gods word? Because it says it is? Circular reasoning. Of course she wants to pacify the cognitive dissonance that is invoked by irrationally saying god has it all under control and allowed this to happen even though it is an evil act. Yep, somehow god is going to work it out. That's all she has to offer. It's a cop out. It's a god of the gaps argument kind of....i don't understand why evil happens so....[god] allows is for a reason beyond my understanding. Occam's Razor says maybe the most common sense answer is there is no god and humans do bad things to each other but it's also up to us to fix it. We take responsibility.

Quote:Some evils in my life have resulted in good things. Some have explained it that life is like a tapestry with dark threads accenting light ones.

correlation does not equal causation.

Quote:God didn't let me down, He was there for me. But I felt He didn't protect my daughter. I came back to God because without Him there's only blackness and meaninglessness. He doesn't owe me explanations or anything. I owe HIM my life, my salvation, the very air I breathe!

Blackness? Meaninglessness? What does this even mean? It's nonsense. Your life is meaningful because you give meaning to it the way you live each day. Shit happens, yes, sometimes it's bad, but that doesn't mean your life is meaningless. And god doesn't owe me explanations? This is the battered wife syndrome. I keep getting beat down (god allows it) but I keep coming back to him because he's the one who gives me life. Uhhhh...whaaa?

Here are more questions I would ask her...food for thought:

If a hundred different religions have to be wrong for yours to be right, does this show that people from all over the world like to invent gods that don’t exist? Follow-up: How do you know then that yours wasn't invented?

If your parents had belonged to a different religion, do you think you would belong to that religion too?

If people from the five major religions are told conflicting information by their respective gods, which should be believed?

How can you tell the voice of God from a voice in your head?

How can you tell the voice of God from the voice of the Devil?

Would you find it easier to kill someone if you believed God supported you in the act?

An all-knowing God can read your mind, so why does he require you to demonstrate your faith by worshiping him?

If God is all-knowing, why do holy books describe him as surprised or angered by the actions of humans? He should have known what was going to happen, right?

An all-knowing God knows who will ultimately reject him. Why does God create people who he knows will end up in hell?

**Crickets** -- God
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22-06-2015, 01:30 PM
RE: Looking for Feedback on a debate I had on facebook
(22-06-2015 12:51 PM)Tonechaser77 Wrote:  Here are some issues I have:

Quote:I believe God has control and purpose in everything, even tragedy. "Gods ways are not our ways" Isaiah 55:8. A hard thing sometimes , God's sovereignty.

Prove that god has control over everything? Prove that he has purpose in all of it? You can't. If you go to the bible for proof, how do you prove the bible is gods word? Because it says it is? Circular reasoning. Of course she wants to pacify the cognitive dissonance that is invoked by irrationally saying god has it all under control and allowed this to happen even though it is an evil act. Yep, somehow god is going to work it out. That's all she has to offer. It's a cop out. It's a god of the gaps argument kind of....i don't understand why evil happens so....[god] allows is for a reason beyond my understanding. Occam's Razor says maybe the most common sense answer is there is no god and humans do bad things to each other but it's also up to us to fix it. We take responsibility.

Quote:Some evils in my life have resulted in good things. Some have explained it that life is like a tapestry with dark threads accenting light ones.

correlation does not equal causation.

Quote:God didn't let me down, He was there for me. But I felt He didn't protect my daughter. I came back to God because without Him there's only blackness and meaninglessness. He doesn't owe me explanations or anything. I owe HIM my life, my salvation, the very air I breathe!

Blackness? Meaninglessness? What does this even mean? It's nonsense. Your life is meaningful because you give meaning to it the way you live each day. Shit happens, yes, sometimes it's bad, but that doesn't mean your life is meaningless. And god doesn't owe me explanations? This is the battered wife syndrome. I keep getting beat down (god allows it) but I keep coming back to him because he's the one who gives me life. Uhhhh...whaaa?

Here are more questions I would ask her...food for thought:

If a hundred different religions have to be wrong for yours to be right, does this show that people from all over the world like to invent gods that don’t exist? Follow-up: How do you know then that yours wasn't invented?

If your parents had belonged to a different religion, do you think you would belong to that religion too?

If people from the five major religions are told conflicting information by their respective gods, which should be believed?

How can you tell the voice of God from a voice in your head?

How can you tell the voice of God from the voice of the Devil?

Would you find it easier to kill someone if you believed God supported you in the act?

An all-knowing God can read your mind, so why does he require you to demonstrate your faith by worshiping him?

If God is all-knowing, why do holy books describe him as surprised or angered by the actions of humans? He should have known what was going to happen, right?

An all-knowing God knows who will ultimately reject him. Why does God create people who he knows will end up in hell?

I like your suggestions, I will put them to use in what is sure to be future debates. And yeah some of the stuff she said made absolutely no sense at all.

Quote: Would you find it easier to kill someone if you believed God supported you in the act?
Would a modification of this question along the lines of, If God told you to kill someone would you do it?, be effective?

“We can judge our progress by the courage of our questions and the depth of our answers, our willingness to embrace what is true rather than what feels good.”
― Carl Sagan
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22-06-2015, 02:23 PM
RE: Looking for Feedback on a debate I had on facebook
Quote:Would a modification of this question along the lines of, If God told you to kill someone would you do it?, be effective? [quote]

Yes. Abraham and Isaac principle here. Any of these can be effective in pushing someone to think about the hard questions. But the trick is convincing them that "god will work it out in the end" or "god has his reasons" is not an effective answer even though they will usually revert back this. She has to realize that god doesn't abide by his own given moral law.

One more positive note: (and I only mention this because I do it all the time still too...trying to jettison it though). In lieu of calling out the "logical fallacy", explain it instead...don't give it its title. Most lay-believers have no clue what logical fallacies are. I never did until I took the time to discover them on my own. Instead work in the definition of the fallacy and use other third part examples of that fallacy to try to get their attention. Sometimes it's helpful to see the irrationality in a third party example rather than hearing it about their own. Then they can make the connection. Smile

**Crickets** -- God
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22-06-2015, 03:31 PM (This post was last modified: 23-06-2015 03:42 AM by god has no twitter account.)
RE: Looking for Feedback on a debate I had on facebook
(22-06-2015 12:00 PM)Worom Wrote:  Facebook is probably not the best medium for a debate, but I wanted to see how well I would do and how well I could word my arguments. Some background the person I'm debating with is the wife of my Dad's brother, she has a masters degree in Christian Education, and her husband is a Pastor, she tends to post a lot of ignorant stuff on her facebook in bursts over long periods of time. Below is the text cleaned up a bit for easier reading, I left the first names intact, I'm Jeffrey, she is Rebecca


Rebecca: via GodVine
June 19 at 9:09am ·
So sad
(image here was a prayer thing on the charleston massacre)
Pray for Charleston
Send this FREE Christian prayer!
http://WWW.CROSSCARDS.COM


Jeffrey: So here is a question, If God is all powerful why didn't he stop the murderer from killing his victims especially in a house of worship? And wouldn't time better be spent trying to help the victims or working towards changes in society that would help prevent this in the future instead of meaningless prayer? And before you give me the free will argument excuse watch this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z1BzP1wr234 (darkmatter2525 how God favors evil video)

Rebecca: I don't believe in total free will. I believe God has control and purpose in everything, even tragedy. "Gods ways are not our ways" Isaiah 55:8. A hard thing sometimes , God's sovereignty. Especially in your tragedy Jeff. There is comfort in knowing this for me.
Like · Reply · 1 · June 19 at 10:02am

No Further responses at this point from Rebecca

Worom

You can tell me to hush my mouth if you wish.

My feeling is that if you want to win any kind of a discussion, you might want to think about holding it on your territory rather than on that of your opponent.

Because Rebecca is a christian and because you once were, my feeling is that it isn't wise to hold the discussion in a biblical arena if you wish to win. In my experience, although christians think they know and understand the bible and god etc., they don't know and understand them as well as they think. However, what they don't usually understand is the periphery which supports christianity and it's there where you should have your discussion.

For example, there is no doubt in the christian mind that jesus. They are also of the opinion that most everyone else also accepts that jesus existed and that all historians do. However, this is beginning to change and Dr Richard Carrier presents a compelling case that jesus, as a human being, never actually existed. If one looks outside of the bible, there isn't actually any contemporary accounts of jesus. This is indeed strange for someone who reputedly went around Galilee performing miracles and preaching to crowds of 5,000. There isn't one single written account of jesus outside of the bible until 93/94 AD. The next isn't until 116 AD. These, at best are only tertiary sources and their primary sources are not made known. This area is well worth reading up on because it provides much ammunition that christians find it difficult to defend against.

There's also the issue of god creating the universe. One might mention M-theory and the work being performed at MIT to christians and ask for their opinion. You will often find a glazed look will descend upon their faces. Whilst on the subject, you could mention Krauss and how we no longer need god to create a universe. That usually causes some consternation.

Regarding creation, it's fun to mention to a christian that, according to genesis, god created day and night on Day 2 but waited until Day 4 to create the Sun and the stars. Even they will find it difficult to explain why god doesn't understand the Sun and the nature of light.

There is one argument that I keep for emergencies: christians have murdered between 100 - 200 million people during their sad existence. This doesn't include the millions that they "only" raped, pillaged, enslaved and tortured. They are the most blood thirsty cult ever to disgrace this planet of ours. Even Hitler "only" managed to murder 10,000,000 people. That means that christians are 10 - 20 times more evil than even Hitler was. Not bad for a cult that preaches love, peace, understanding and forgiveness.

Also, does it not say in the bible that it is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of heaven? Why is it then that the richest entity on the planet is a christian denomination?

I could go on and on but that should put any christian nicely on the back foot.

If you would like me to expand on any of the above, just holler.

Hope that this has been of help.

Marburg virus, Ebola, Rabies, HIV, Smallpox, Hantavirus, Dengue Fever all brought to you by god - who cares for us and loves us all Censored
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