Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
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28-02-2012, 10:34 AM (This post was last modified: 28-02-2012 11:02 AM by kingschosen.)
Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
Since I've been forbidden to teach in church because of my beliefs, I can't share this with my Sunday School Class... in church. This doesn't mean I can't post this to FB. Screw them, man... I'm called to teach, I'm going to teach. So, yeah, this is a little post I made towards Christians addressing the issue of knowing that God exists.

Critiques are welcome. I'm going to post it tonight.


Are you 100% positive that God exists?

Fellow Christians… can you truthfully answer that question? Just for a second, set aside your deep rooted beliefs and your indoctrination and think about what I just asked you.

If you don’t like the nature of this question, close the browser. I’m not soft balling questions. In fact, what I say you may not like, but I hope it challenges you.

The popular atheist thinker, Richard Dawkins, created a scale that identifies theistic beliefs. He lists peoples’ beliefs from 1-7.

1. Strong theist. 100 per cent probability of God. In the words of C.G. Jung: "I do not believe, I know."
2. De facto theist. Very high probability but short of 100 per cent. "I don't know for certain, but I strongly believe in God and live my life on the assumption that he is there."
3. Leaning towards theism. Higher than 50 per cent but not very high. "I am very uncertain, but I am inclined to believe in God."
4. Completely impartial. Exactly 50 per cent. "God's existence and non-existence are exactly equiprobable."
5. Leaning towards atheism. Lower than 50 per cent but not very low. "I do not know whether God exists but I'm inclined to be skeptical."
6. De facto atheist. Very low probability, but short of zero. "I don't know for certain but I think God is very improbable, and I live my life on the assumption that he is not there."
7. Strong atheist. "I know there is no God, with the same conviction as Jung knows there is one."
Where do you lie on this scale? Most Christian’s default answer is “1”.

Personally, I lie somewhere in between 1 and 2. I would say I am a 1.8. Yes, you understood me correctly. I do not know 100% if there is a God; moreover, a Christian God. Does this make me blasphemous? Maybe to some, but I don’t believe it does.

Firstly, let’s define absolutism as it relates to a theistic belief:

Being absolute is being 100% in something. Perfect. Without error. Knowing without any doubt. Infinite.

Words that are associated with absolutes: never / always

Secondly, let’s take a look at the words “never” and “always”.

We live in a finite world. God created it this way. In our finite world, can something always be “always” and never be “never”? Without going into philosophy, the answer is “no”. There is nothing in our world that is absolute.

The existence of God can be argued ad nauseum, and there will never be a 100% conclusion. The fact remains; you cannot disprove or prove something that you cannot see. Both sides of the argument have an equal share but both lack evidence. Even Dawkins does not claim to be a 7 because he acknowledges that he cannot definitely prove that there isn’t a God.

So, what does being a 1 or 7 claim? Simple. It claims omniscience. Saying that you are a 1 or 7 is implying that you know all things in their truth. For atheists, this isn’t logically honest, and for theists, this is an equivocation of yourself to God.

Omniscience is unobtainable; therefore, claiming you know that God 100% exists is dishonest.

There is a key word in scripture that defines this point – faith.

Faith is defined as: firm belief in something for which there is no proof; complete trust.

This means that you cannot have faith in something if you believe it to be 100% true.

Now, let’s take a look at what the Bible has to say about faith:

2 Cor 5:6-7
6 Therefore, being always of good courage, and knowing that while we are at home in the body we are absent from the Lord— 7 for we walk by faith, not by sight—

We walk in Christianity not because of what we see but because of what we believe and trust. This is the cornerstone in the acceptance of Christ.

Eph 2:8-9
8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;

Through God’s grace and our faith in Him we are saved. It is by having faith in something that we can’t see or touch that we are saved. Without faith – a fraction of not knowing for sure – we could not be redeemed.

Rom 1:17
17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith to faith; as it is written, “ BUT THE RIGHTEOUS man SHALL LIVE BY FAITH.”

Living by faith – a subtle unknowing – is crucial to being righteous. Why do we need faith? So God can work in us. If we had absolute knowledge, then we would depend on ourselves; simply because, we would know. Since we do not have absolute knowledge, we are forced to depend on God because His absolute knowledge is what guides our lives.

As a Christian, you cannot claim to know 100% that God exists. This would destroy faith and the need for it. You would no longer need to trust God or rely on Him.

So, claiming absolute knowledge of God is actually denying Him. Remember, since you are not omniscient, you cannot rely on yourself but have to rely on God.

Pro 3:5-6
5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart
And do not lean on your own understanding.
6 In all your ways acknowledge Him,
And He will make your paths straight.

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28-02-2012, 10:42 AM
RE: Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
First thing I'd say is I'd address it as "Fellow Christians"... why alienate your reader at the start?
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28-02-2012, 10:46 AM
 
Thumbs Down Great Post!
I'm going to read through your post, but why are you in a church where you don't agree with their stance on Christianity? I mean if they won't let you teach because of your beliefs, obviously your beliefs are at odds with theirs. Why are you in that church?

Later: Dang, KC. That's a good message. I'm serious. Is that your own invention? If so, kudos; if not, then thanks for bringing it up. I am impressed.

I'm surprised they won't let you preach that in your church. Jesus never said "know" he said believe. And I think faith is the first of all spiritual exercises.

Great post!

Ed
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28-02-2012, 10:46 AM
RE: Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
(28-02-2012 10:42 AM)kineo Wrote:  First thing I'd say is I'd address it as "Fellow Christians"... why alienate your reader at the start?

Good point.

Edit: ok fixed. Thanks!
(28-02-2012 10:46 AM)Egor Wrote:  I'm going to read through your post, but why are you in a church where you don't agree with their stance on Christianity? I mean if they won't let you teach because of your beliefs, obviously your beliefs are at odds with theirs. Why are you in that church?

This has been an ongoing issue. I don't feel led to leave just yet; however, my family and I have been praying about it.

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28-02-2012, 10:48 AM
RE: Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
Not bad, but if I were you, I'd stop about halfway through...before you got to the "faith" portion. Once you realize faith is nothing but wishful thinking, you'll make a good atheist. Big Grin

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28-02-2012, 10:58 AM
 
RE: Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
(28-02-2012 10:46 AM)kingschosen Wrote:  
(28-02-2012 10:42 AM)kineo Wrote:  First thing I'd say is I'd address it as "Fellow Christians"... why alienate your reader at the start?

Good point.

Edit: ok fixed. Thanks!
(28-02-2012 10:46 AM)Egor Wrote:  I'm going to read through your post, but why are you in a church where you don't agree with their stance on Christianity? I mean if they won't let you teach because of your beliefs, obviously your beliefs are at odds with theirs. Why are you in that church?

This has been an ongoing issue. I don't feel led to leave just yet; however, my family and I have been praying about it.

Got it.

One thing I would change: Don't call Richard Dawkins great...please.
Dang, KC. That's a good message. I'm serious. Is that your own invention? If so, kudos; if not, then thanks for bringing it up. I am impressed.

I'm surprised they won't let you preach that in your church. Jesus never said "know" he said believe. And I think faith is the first of all spiritual exercises.

Great post!

Ed
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28-02-2012, 11:03 AM (This post was last modified: 28-02-2012 11:06 AM by kingschosen.)
RE: Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
(28-02-2012 10:58 AM)Egor Wrote:  One thing I would change: Don't call Richard Dawkins great...please.

I meant in relative terms to his community... bleh, regardless, I changed it to make it more clear.

Quote:Dang, KC. That's a good message. I'm serious. Is that your own invention? If so, kudos; if not, then thanks for bringing it up. I am impressed.

I'm surprised they won't let you preach that in your church. Jesus never said "know" he said believe. And I think faith is the first of all spiritual exercises.

Great post!

Ed

Wow... thanks man. Didn't expect that from you. And yes, I just wrote it this morning.

The crux of them not letting me teach is because I believe in the Doctrine of Election.

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28-02-2012, 11:16 AM
 
RE: Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
I take it by Doctrine of Election you mean that God chooses who will be saved and who will not rather than us independently choosing to be saved by faith. If that's the case, I take it then that you do not go to a Calvinist church (my understanding being that the Doctrine of Election is a Calvinist teaching).
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28-02-2012, 11:17 AM
RE: Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
It's a well made statement. Something many of them will hopefully learn from. But seriously king, if you're position in the church is the white elephant the only thing they'll ever see you doing is harm. You've been branded and it's no fun. If you really want to help others go somewhere where people are willing to be helped by you.

I've fought tooth and nail to get more acceptance for transsexuals and other gender issues. I've discussed with the people who hate me most. These were not friendly debates, and we were not all there to gain something from the experience. Luckily I speak in clases, so the more aggressive people have yet to be violent with me. Luckily I'm in a part of the country where physical aggression isn't a popular standard. But I've said my peace, and explained just the difficulties of living, to people who would prefer I not even exist.

Why have I fought so hard in a basically losing battle? There's no place for people like me. We have no better option. We can't just go somewhere else. The issues exist wherever we go. You can go somewhere else easily. There ae billions of churches with billions of personal identities. You consider the people at your church to in general be on your side. What are you trying to prove to them then?

When you went there I'm sure you were perfectly accepted, and now you're the one bringing up questions that they are afraid of. How important are these questions? My questions were excessively important, because unlike me most in my position weren't welcomed into new jobs, schools, libraries. Sometimes we can go nowhere in peace. I've made my stand and been an outcast because there are many who truly need a voice. You have a different personal opinion on a subject you basically agree with the church on.

How important is your personal vision of this? How necessary is it to teach this exact view to those who have similar enough leanings? Why treat those you normally call your allies as your enemies? What you're saying here is important for everyone to realize. It's good to remove that hardcore gnosticism that binds the world into black and white, but at the same time what you'e doing where you worship is give them someone to blame. You're the one making them uncomfortable and they have been trying to figure it out.

An excuse I've gotten millions of times from all sorts of people is that I should be willing to be uncomfortable, because for me to feel comfort everyone else will be uncomfortable. I want you to realize that this is where you're going. Are you fine with making everyone uncomfortable?

To me what I'm doing, my life and the lives of others who simply can't help who they are has to be fought this way. I have to remove that uncomfortable issue. I have to make it where me being me is comfortable for everyone. But it's a long way before that really happens, and I make a lot of people uneasy. I'm simply wanting to live, but I've disturbed many. Been thanked and hated. Is this position you hold so important that you must fight for it? It's an important question even if you don't think of it this way, but if you continue searching in all the places that are christian you will meet people welcoming of your questions and willing to discuss and learn. I don't think your current church has to be the place that understands. You have options, keep your mind on them. My fights exist because there are few options for me. I make so many uncomfortable, because the only option for me is to change everything.

Must you change everything yourself? Or are things fine as they are? Think about this for a while. There are times where pushing from the outside is important because there's no place to fit in, but there are also times where all your pushing is only because you didn't notice where you belonged.

I'm not a non believer, I believe in the possibility of anything. I just don't let the actuality of something be determined by a 3rd party.
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28-02-2012, 11:20 AM
RE: Theistic Absolutism: A question I'm asking Christians.
(28-02-2012 10:34 AM)kingschosen Wrote:  "Since I've been forbidden to teach in church because of my beliefs ... This doesn't mean I can't post this to FB. Screw them, man... I'm called to teach, I'm going to teach. So, yeah, this is a little post I made towards Christians addressing the issue of knowing that God exists."

"...this is a little post I made towards Christians..."
Because posting it here will find such a HUGE Christian audience?

But I'm not preaching! LMAO.

Even his local church was smart enough to not listen.
Don't feel bad KC, we are banned from preaching there too.

It's all in your head, because there is no other place it could be.
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