You CAN game Christian morality
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25-02-2015, 08:48 PM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
(25-02-2015 10:08 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  
(25-02-2015 07:13 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  You mean "only if he doesn't change the rules on the game after it starts"? Because this isn't a question of benevolence, but rather adherence to his own system.

Although, I will give you points given God's tendency to radically change the rules every few thousand years. Assuming the Mormons aren't right, it's been about two thousand years since the last goalpost shift.

Adherence to the system?

1. Those who sin may be saved before death. Free will.

2. Those who are saved before death are saved from all their sin, before and post conversion.

3. Those who are saved need benevolence for ongoing sin because they will not be utterly changed until the next world. They are often radically changed, saved marriages, healthy lifestyles, etc. but make mistakes. They are still humans.

Just curious here Q, what do you believe about the age of accountability? Do children that die before becoming saved go to hell?

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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26-02-2015, 06:42 AM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
(25-02-2015 02:28 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  4. Those who are saved require God not to change his mind and nullify point 2, thus suddenly rendering everyone unsaved who was formerly saved.

See? It requires God sticking to his rules, or else you can't possibly make any predictions about the future based on the system. Benevolence or not, I can cut you off one point earlier if God doesn't adhere to his system.

Again, he has a point of radically changing how things work every few thousand years, and this system is already two thousand years old.
As as former evangelical you're probably aware there's a system of doctrine that systematizes these changes, called Dispensationalism. The most commonly advanced system is one of seven dispensations (or economies) in which god makes differing demands of humanity:

http://www.preteristarchive.com/ARTchive...s-7_02.jpg

However, there are other systems with more dispensations, called hyperdispensationalism, that cause some fringe groups for example to only accept the Pauline letters as authoritative scripture for this age -- they don't just regard the OT as non-binding, they regard the gospels and non-Pauline letters as inapplicable as well. I don't remember what they do with the Revelation.

My issue with this kind of thinking is not so much that god moves the goalposts / can't make up his mind, but it's sort of like god regretting that he made man because he didn't foresee him sinning, hence the flood. Why all this baroque cycling through dealing with humanity in various ways as if he's trying random stuff until something works? The argument is the usual chestnut that god is systematically teaching mankind throughout history about his utter depravity by presenting him with progressively more effective remedies culminating in grace. But this also is indifferent to all the human suffering in the meantime, including all the people who didn't achieve some form of righteousness before dying and are presumably burning in hell as we speak.

It's a crazy system.
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26-02-2015, 07:08 AM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
(26-02-2015 06:42 AM)mordant Wrote:  
(25-02-2015 02:28 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  4. Those who are saved require God not to change his mind and nullify point 2, thus suddenly rendering everyone unsaved who was formerly saved.

See? It requires God sticking to his rules, or else you can't possibly make any predictions about the future based on the system. Benevolence or not, I can cut you off one point earlier if God doesn't adhere to his system.

Again, he has a point of radically changing how things work every few thousand years, and this system is already two thousand years old.
As as former evangelical you're probably aware there's a system of doctrine that systematizes these changes, called Dispensationalism. The most commonly advanced system is one of seven dispensations (or economies) in which god makes differing demands of humanity:

http://www.preteristarchive.com/ARTchive...s-7_02.jpg

However, there are other systems with more dispensations, called hyperdispensationalism, that cause some fringe groups for example to only accept the Pauline letters as authoritative scripture for this age -- they don't just regard the OT as non-binding, they regard the gospels and non-Pauline letters as inapplicable as well. I don't remember what they do with the Revelation.

My issue with this kind of thinking is not so much that god moves the goalposts / can't make up his mind, but it's sort of like god regretting that he made man because he didn't foresee him sinning, hence the flood. Why all this baroque cycling through dealing with humanity in various ways as if he's trying random stuff until something works? The argument is the usual chestnut that god is systematically teaching mankind throughout history about his utter depravity by presenting him with progressively more effective remedies culminating in grace. But this also is indifferent to all the human suffering in the meantime, including all the people who didn't achieve some form of righteousness before dying and are presumably burning in hell as we speak.

It's a crazy system.

You would almost think it was all just made up. Drinking Beverage

Skepticism is not a position; it is an approach to claims.
Science is not a subject, but a method.
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26-02-2015, 07:52 AM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
(26-02-2015 06:42 AM)mordant Wrote:  My issue with this kind of thinking is not so much that god moves the goalposts / can't make up his mind, but it's sort of like god regretting that he made man because he didn't foresee him sinning, hence the flood. Why all this baroque cycling through dealing with humanity in various ways as if he's trying random stuff until something works? The argument is the usual chestnut that god is systematically teaching mankind throughout history about his utter depravity by presenting him with progressively more effective remedies culminating in grace. But this also is indifferent to all the human suffering in the meantime, including all the people who didn't achieve some form of righteousness before dying and are presumably burning in hell as we speak.

It's a crazy system.

It's no different than any other form of apologetics. One thing I've learned having sat on both sides of the fence is that any one given apologetic approach really only "works" when talking about what it's meant to address. This is why free will has been molded so well to "fix" the problem of evil, but it utterly falls apart when you talk about heaven. Free will wasn't meant to address that, and as soon as you start talking about heaven, the apologists will either start erecting scaffoldings to put up a facade to cover the ugliness you just found, or they'll try to change the subject quickly.

If you talk to an apologist on really any matter long enough, and ask them enough questions, you will see them teeter between several different approaches. The goal is that you (and they!) don't notice this, but take it as one long, fluid discussion. Still, you will see God's power wax and wane line a sine wave. If you start asking hard questions, suddenly God gets vague, unstated limitations to make it look like he's not a jerk. Once it becomes obvious that this isn't an impressive god, he starts to become strong again, while trying to avoid talking about those problems which rendered him weak thirty seconds ago. If you want to see this in action, talk to an apologist about the flood. Make sure to press them to answer why it was a flood and not something else, and why God drown all the babies when he had an infinite number of other options. God will osculate between weak and strong as the conversation plays out. I guarantee it. There's a reason I am reluctant to discuss flood apologetics anymore, and it's because of the amount of intellectual dishonesty required to take a stance other than "I think it was a metaphor and didn't actually happen.".


(26-02-2015 07:08 AM)Chas Wrote:  You would almost think it was all just made up. Drinking Beverage

Exactly.
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26-02-2015, 11:13 AM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
(25-02-2015 11:08 AM)EvolutionKills Wrote:  
(25-02-2015 10:08 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  Adherence to the system?

1. Those who sin may be saved before death. Free will.

2. Those who are saved before death are saved from all their sin, before and post conversion.

3. Those who are saved need benevolence for ongoing sin because they will not be utterly changed until the next world. They are often radically changed, saved marriages, healthy lifestyles, etc. but make mistakes. They are still humans.

Right, so what prevents option 2 from being abused like a regenerating stack of 'Get Out Of Jail Free' cards? How does one verify when one has or has not been saved, and thus has access to the 'All You Can Sin' buffet?

I'm not expecting real answers, but it should be fun to watch the human pretzel. For a bit at least. Drinking Beverage

Common sense (as well as the scriptures) tell us that when one is saved from drowning or a fire, one shows gratitude towards the rescuer. Likewise with sin. Further, the Christian receives the Holy Spirit. Things I liked to do before conversion I don't like to do now.

I'm told atheists on forums like TTA are bitter and angry. If you are not, your posts to me will be respectful, insightful and thoughtful. Prove me wrong by your adherence to decent behavior.
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26-02-2015, 11:13 AM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
(25-02-2015 08:48 PM)TheInquisition Wrote:  
(25-02-2015 10:08 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  Adherence to the system?

1. Those who sin may be saved before death. Free will.

2. Those who are saved before death are saved from all their sin, before and post conversion.

3. Those who are saved need benevolence for ongoing sin because they will not be utterly changed until the next world. They are often radically changed, saved marriages, healthy lifestyles, etc. but make mistakes. They are still humans.

Just curious here Q, what do you believe about the age of accountability? Do children that die before becoming saved go to hell?

No--children go to Heaven. Certainly.

I'm told atheists on forums like TTA are bitter and angry. If you are not, your posts to me will be respectful, insightful and thoughtful. Prove me wrong by your adherence to decent behavior.
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26-02-2015, 11:15 AM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
(25-02-2015 02:28 PM)RobbyPants Wrote:  
(25-02-2015 10:08 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  Adherence to the system?

1. Those who sin may be saved before death. Free will.

2. Those who are saved before death are saved from all their sin, before and post conversion.

3. Those who are saved need benevolence for ongoing sin because they will not be utterly changed until the next world. They are often radically changed, saved marriages, healthy lifestyles, etc. but make mistakes. They are still humans.

4. Those who are saved require God not to change his mind and nullify point 2, thus suddenly rendering everyone unsaved who was formerly saved.

See? It requires God sticking to his rules, or else you can't possibly make any predictions about the future based on the system. Benevolence or not, I can cut you off one point earlier if God doesn't adhere to his system.

Again, he has a point of radically changing how things work every few thousand years, and this system is already two thousand years old.

What is the issue with God adhering to his rules in your conundrum? Benevolence comes with trusting Jesus/accepting Jesus's atonement. Free will is one the rules God sets to trust Jesus or not...

I'm told atheists on forums like TTA are bitter and angry. If you are not, your posts to me will be respectful, insightful and thoughtful. Prove me wrong by your adherence to decent behavior.
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26-02-2015, 11:33 AM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
(26-02-2015 11:15 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  What is the issue with God adhering to his rules in your conundrum?

Because if he doesn't, there is no system.


(26-02-2015 11:15 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  Benevolence comes with trusting Jesus/accepting Jesus's atonement. Free will is one the rules God sets to trust Jesus or not...

Assuming he doesn't change the rules. If he does, there might be no atonement.
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26-02-2015, 05:47 PM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
A simple thing we can do to make sure that that we are understanding each other is to avoid using terms whose definition we don't share. I think "saved" is a term that should not be used between atheists and Christians because the term means something different to each group. I think we should use a word that we can agree on such as "believe". Also when you say "Those who sin" we must surely take Romans 3 into account and replace that with "everyone". "benevolence" is a loaded term here and needs replacing too.

So, edited...
(25-02-2015 10:08 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  1. Everyone may believe before death. Free will. [Ed. I'm not sure I see the connection between belief and free will here]
2. Everyone who believes before death is granted access to heaven, regardless of prior actions.
3. Those who believe are not completely changed but are often radically changed, saved marriages, healthy lifestyles, etc. [Ed. This point doesn't seem to add contribute to the moral system]

Would that be a fair summary of the system you are describing, Q? If you believe or are a child you gain access to heaven. Otherwise you will be tortured forever.

In another thread you said:

(24-02-2015 01:36 PM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  It would die the death! The Bible talks about the injustices of this world that are only fully corrected in the next. If Stalin is forgiven in the next world, what a merciful God! If Stalin suffers for snuffing millions of lives and oppressing 100 million others, what a righteous God!

So I'm trying to understand your system then. You seem to be saying that the system of Christian access to heaven or hell can only be moral if those who snuff millions of lives and oppress 100 million others are denied access to heaven. Yet the system you describe above seems to be disconnected from a person's actions in life, and instead only connected to their belief. How do you reconcile these views?

Do you reject the system above and instead substitute the Islamic model where everyone's sin is punished in hell proportionately to their magnitude rather than seeing a binary eternal-heaven/eternal-hell choice?

Give me your argument in the form of a published paper, and then we can start to talk.
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26-02-2015, 05:59 PM
RE: You CAN game Christian morality
(26-02-2015 11:33 AM)RobbyPants Wrote:  
(26-02-2015 11:15 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  What is the issue with God adhering to his rules in your conundrum?

Because if he doesn't, there is no system.


(26-02-2015 11:15 AM)The Q Continuum Wrote:  Benevolence comes with trusting Jesus/accepting Jesus's atonement. Free will is one the rules God sets to trust Jesus or not...

Assuming he doesn't change the rules. If he does, there might be no atonement.

And assuming he doesn't lie.

Gods derive their power from post-hoc rationalizations. -The Inquisition

Using the supernatural to explain events in your life is a failure of the intellect to comprehend the world around you. -The Inquisition
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