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From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

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From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Ivan on Wed Nov 23, 2011 11:59 pm

First topic message reminder :

1. The Old Testament?

As Richard Dawkins put it: “The God of the Old Testament is arguably the most unpleasant character in all fiction: jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully”. What sort of a role model is that?

In any case, the Old Testament has plenty of contradictions. For example, in Genesis 6:19, God tells Noah to take two of every kind of animal into his ark, yet by Genesis 7:2 this has become seven pairs of each kind of ritually clean animal and one pair of each kind of unclean animal. 2 Chronicles 22:2 says that Ahaziah was forty-two years old when he became king of Judah, while 2 Kings 8:26 records that he was only twenty-two years old. No doubt an apologist would dismiss that as a difference in translation from Hebrew, but if one supposed ‘fact’ is open to so much discrepancy, why not the rest?

2. The New Testament?

Yet more contradictions. For example, Matthew traces Joseph’s descent from King David via twenty-eight intermediate generations, while Luke has forty-one generations. Worse, there is almost no overlap in the names on the two lists! In any case, if Jesus really was born of a virgin, Joseph’s ancestry is irrelevant and cannot be used to fulfil, on Jesus’ behalf, the Old Testament prophecy that the Messiah should be descended from David.

The four gospels that made it into the official canon were chosen, more or less arbitrarily, out of a larger sample of at least a dozen including the gospels of Thomas, Peter, Nicodemus, Philip, Bartholomew and Mary Magdalen. The gospels that didn’t make it were omitted perhaps because they included stories that were even more embarrassingly implausible than those in the four canonical ones. The gospel of Thomas, for example, has numerous anecdotes about the child Jesus abusing his magical powers in the manner of a mischievous fairy, impishly transforming his playmates into goats, or turning mud into sparrows, or giving his father a hand with the carpentry by miraculously lengthening a piece of wood.

The writers of Luke and Matthew declare that Mary conceived as a virgin, relying upon the Greek rendering of Isaiah 7:14. However, the Hebrew text of Isaiah uses the word ‘alma’, which simply means 'young woman', without any implication of virginity. Sam Harris says: “It seems all but certain that the dogma of the virgin birth, and much of the Christian world’s resulting anxiety about sex, was a product of a mistranslation from the Hebrew”.

Another strike against the doctrine of the virgin birth is that the other evangelists have not heard of it. Mark and John both appear uncomfortable with accusations of Jesus’ illegitimacy, but never mention his miraculous origins. Paul refers to Jesus as being “born of the seed of David according to the flesh” and “born of woman”, without referring to Mary’s virginity at all.

And the evangelists made other errors of scholarship. Matthew 27:9-10, for instance, claims to fulfil a saying that it attributes to Jeremiah. The saying actually appears in Zechariah 11:12-13. The gospels also contradict one another outright. John tells us that Jesus was crucified the day before the Passover meal was eaten. Mark says it happened the day after.

In the light of such discrepancies, how is it possible for anyone to believe, as fundamentalists do, that the Bible is perfect in all its parts? As Mark Twain wrote: “The Bible has noble poetry in it; and some clever fables; and some blood-drenched history; and a wealth of obscenity; and upwards of a thousand lies”.

So should Christians follow the genocidal teachings of the Old Testament, the Jesus portrayed in those gospels which made it to the New Testament, the sterner teachings of Paul, or should they listen to…..

3. The Pope?

Roman Catholics believe that Peter was the first Bishop of Rome, and that whoever succeeded him in that role was the Vicar of Christ on Earth. However, it all went pear-shaped in the early fifteenth century, when there were three Vicars of Christ, or Popes, simultaneously. The most colourful of them was John XXIII, a soldier “of very disreputable life” who was also violent. In 1415, he was deposed after being charged with fornication, adultery, incest, sodomy and poisoning his predecessor. Apart from that, he was probably a nice chap….but would you seek spiritual guidance from him - or anyone claiming authority, and even infallibility, simply because they had succeeded him?

4. The Church of England?

That was established, not specifically as part of the Protestant Reformation (in fact it was really the English Catholic Church) but because Henry VIII wanted a divorce. The C of E has been too closely associated with politics and was sometimes referred to as “the Tory Party at prayer”. The great strength of the Church of England is that it allows its followers to believe almost anything. The trouble is that hardly any of them do.

So there is the dilemma. Which source should a Christian use for guidance, and should a Christian accept everything from their chosen source, rather than cherry-pick the more comfortable and acceptable parts?
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by stuart torr on Thu Nov 28, 2013 10:25 pm

Have they tried the Racing Post, sure to get on to a winner from there, and people certainly put their faith in some of those good tipsters. cheers 

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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by polyglide on Fri Nov 29, 2013 11:13 am

Ye of little faith and even less understanding and whose whole attitude is questionable should consider the facts in relation to both the times and the meanings involved.

To take matters in the Old Testament in relation to the prevailing circumstances of today is not only unreasonable but not intended.

The birth of Jesus did away with any obligation those following had to do, other than believing he came to save those willing to follow and believe in him and why he came to earth.

The Old Testament was written in times we cannot actually appreciate. what people were actually like, nor the prevailing circumstances, we have to rely on the words written by man.

Just take for example someone trying to explain the difference between those on this forum and expect those in a thousand years to understand.

We have the, know alls, who think no one but them is entitled to an opinion

The trolls who think they are funny but very easy to put down.

Those who are unable to comprehend even the most basic examples os logic.

But the most, amongst many others, who are lost souls, lost in a mist and pit of their own making.

Now based on that, what type of result would there be in any acount of the history of the present times written by them.



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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by stuart torr on Fri Nov 29, 2013 11:43 am

Certainly have more fun with the racing post, then watching the race to see if your horse won. Laughing 
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Norm Deplume on Fri Nov 29, 2013 12:38 pm

polyglide wrote:Ye of little faith and even less understanding and whose whole attitude is questionable should consider the facts in relation to both the times and the meanings involved.

To take matters in the Old Testament in relation to the prevailing circumstances of today is not only unreasonable but not intended.

The birth of Jesus did away with any obligation those following had to do,  other than believing he came to save those willing to follow and believe in him and why he came to earth.

The Old Testament was written in times we cannot actually appreciate. what people were actually like, nor the prevailing circumstances, we have to rely on the words written by man.

 
The time between compiling the Old and New testaments is around half of the time between the NT and today. How then can the NT - stories about times we cannot actually appreciate, featuring people of whom we cannot know what they were actually like - be said to be of relevance in the 21st century? When one set of scriptural texts is rejected as being out of date why not the rest?


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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by igbo on Fri Nov 29, 2013 2:26 pm

frome god
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by stuart torr on Fri Nov 29, 2013 2:54 pm

Are you a new poster to amazon altogether igbo? or change of name and these are you new posts under that new name? Wink 
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Heretic on Fri Nov 29, 2013 7:11 pm

Shirina wrote:Robert Rector, a senior research fellow at the conservative Heritage Foundation, questioned whether some people classified as poor or low-income actually suffer material hardship. He said that while safety-net programs have helped many Americans, they have gone too far, citing poor people who live in decent-size homes, drive cars and own wide-screen TVs.
Do these idiots not know that if they force people to the starvation line that this starvation line would only be a short time problem. It is quite simple the vast majority of poor people would rather see a rich person die than see their own children go hungry and by most peoples reckoning there are a lot more poor people than rich. I wonder if all that rich peoples money going into the NRA will seem so well spent when the poor start pointing their guns at I wonder who.

I wonder what would happen if people realised that the police in their town is only there to protect the rich from the poor. Yes they solve a few other crimes but that is not their main purpose.

I think if the Christian Right (is it still called the moral majority? a misnomer if there ever was one) and the Republicans continue to force the issue then there might be a revolution in the US of A where all those rich folks make a B-line for the Canadian or Mexican border.

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[I admit to not knowing a whole about our North American cousins but human nature is human nature and if you push someone too hard then one day they will push back.]
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Heretic on Fri Nov 29, 2013 7:15 pm

oftenwrong wrote:Some people find the abstract much easier to deal with than reality.
If you were aware of actual reality rather than the model that your brain has spent a lifetime creating for you then I'm pretty sure that you no less than the rest of us would very quickly go gaga.

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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Heretic on Fri Nov 29, 2013 7:26 pm

Penderyn wrote:Dawkins and his like are just American fundamentalists in a bad mood, people who don't understand texts and are obsessed with a Nineteenth Century heresy, bores.
Richard Dawkins (a Britich subject) has done the American a tremendous service by creating a controversy that puts into the public domain the argument against god and in particular the forms of Fundamentalism that were slowly casting the United States as the laughing stock of the scientific world.  

Penderyn wrote:The interesting thing is how Jesus is shifting the centre of attention from how you appease imagined gods to how you treat real people.


To know how to treat people is a piece of universal (almost) knowledge that most people know by instinct and certainly do not need a religion to tell them. Some people do forget for a while (during the commission of a crime) but do not have any real thought that the crime was not wrong, even while they try to evade justice.

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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Shirina on Fri Nov 29, 2013 8:15 pm

Heretic wrote:I think if the Christian Right (is it still called the moral majority? a misnomer if there ever was one) and the Republicans continue to force the issue then there might be a revolution in the US of A
I've been saying for some time now that the Occupy Wall Street movement was a warning shot across the bow. If the excessive wealth disparity that exists in the US isn't reversed, there will be more events like Occupy Wall Street. Each one will become successively more violent - the poor will eventually go after the rich. Most likely it will start with poor folks going into rich neighborhoods and vandalizing homes and cars. It'll get worse from there. No doubt that right-wingers, most Christians, and Republican pro-business greed-meisters won't listen to what Occupy Wall Street was trying to tell them until it is too late by far.

By the way, America has the third worst wealth disparity of all industrialized nations. Only Brazil and Mexico are worse. The Great Recession, which was caused in totality by greed, was the beginning of the end, as far as I'm concerned. I don't think there is a way out without a revolution.

The really hilarious thing though ... many Republicans actually believe that, if there is a revolution, the poor will rise up against the government because the rich aren't making enough money. Isn't that one of the most ridiculous things you've ever heard?
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by stuart torr on Fri Nov 29, 2013 8:25 pm

Shirina, did you know in your role as moderator, that our new poster igbo is using those initials from the international gay bowlers organization?. Not that it bothers me but I didn't know if there were any rules.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Heretic on Fri Nov 29, 2013 10:34 pm

Shirina wrote:The really hilarious thing though ... many Republicans actually believe that, if there is a revolution, the poor will rise up against the government because the rich aren't making enough money. Isn't that one of the most ridiculous things you've ever heard?
Maybe we could make use of their blinkers at the races and get jockeys to ride them around the tracks.

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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Shirina on Sat Nov 30, 2013 10:09 am

stu wrote:Shirina, did you know in your role as moderator, that our new poster igbo is using those initials from the international gay bowlers organization?. Not that it bothers me but I didn't know if there were any rules.
Nope, no rules - especially for acronyms. It's nigh impossible to prove that a person meant for their name to stand for something, or if it was just a coincidence. Unless of course they typed their name I.G.B.O.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Tosh on Sat Nov 30, 2013 12:30 pm

I think if the Christian Right (is it still called the moral majority? a misnomer if there ever was one) and the Republicans continue to force the issue then there might be a revolution in the US of A
 
I believe the philosophical relationship between Right Wing Conservativism and Christian Fundamentalism is a practical/historical one. A lot of the Bible Belt is rural and self reliant, OT style judgements go down well in isolated communities who do not have the luxury of the law on their doorstep. The black and white way of viewing the problems of human nature suits their environment, as does the owning of guns, it is a kind of frontier mindset aimed more toward individual responsibility than social cohesion. For them life is simply a question of choices, if you make a bad choice then you must accept the consequences of your presumed free will, and the OT is keen on free will and responsibility.
 
They simply do not accept the premise of nature/nurture causing our actions, their self reliance and free will assumptions consider the intrusion of the state as a threat to their God given equal status.
 


Last edited by Ivan on Wed Apr 29, 2015 3:14 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : Removal of a link to a video which no longer exists)
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Heretic on Thu Dec 05, 2013 2:06 pm

I've watched this video and while it was an interesting take on it I was not really surprised by it. JP Cusick seemed to be plenty of evidence for it to me. What is hard to comprehend is the reluctance of people in the UK to realise just how nut-case fruity a really large part of America is. We are getting the odd prosperity gospel church from America right now but they are in the minority of new churches here. We seem to be getting a large number of them starting up from the African community, I have yet to confirm they are as batty as the American ones but I may pay a visit after GiftMas.

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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Heretic on Thu Dec 05, 2013 2:11 pm

I'm just wondering that if we could convert China to actually believing in and upholding Human Rights (and Responsibilities) could they possibly be a better framework on which to hang Western Values.

Just a thought and not yet thought through.

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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by stuart torr on Tue Aug 05, 2014 5:26 pm

Getting back to this debate, I still think the bookmakers would be the best place to go, to see what odds you got on whether there was a god or not that a Christian could get their guidance from.
As I'm an atheist they might as well pray to the sun or moon?
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by polyglide on Wed Aug 06, 2014 1:42 pm

There can only be one true religion if there is only one true God.

A true Christian believes in the Bible and the fact the Jesus came to save those willing to believe and trust in him.

If any other religion does not comply to exactly those terms, then it is a false religion, to a Christian.

You do not have to study other religions to know they are false, if they deviate they are false.



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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by stuart torr on Wed Aug 06, 2014 2:35 pm

P.G.
It has not been proved one way or another whether god exists, and there is more evidence to say he doesn't, and the bible is written by so many humans over such a long period of time, most of it is wrong, so not much more to say is there.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Sep 09, 2014 8:36 pm

polyglide wrote:There can only be one true religion if there is only one true God.

A true Christian believes in the Bible and the fact the Jesus came to save those willing to believe and trust in him.

If any other religion does not comply to exactly those terms, then it is a false religion, to a Christian.

You do not have to study other religions to know they are false, if they deviate they are false.




They all say the same about Christianity, and since both dismissive and bombastic claims are made without proper evidence then the logical and rational response is to treat all of the claims the same, and dismiss them. Hitchen's razor applies here...

“That which can be asserted without evidence, can be dismissed without evidence.”
― Christopher Hitchens
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by stuart torr on Tue Sep 09, 2014 9:33 pm

Said that all along Sheldon, but I'm afraid that P.G. Does not see both sides of any argument/debate, and is only the theist side.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:31 pm

polyglide wrote:

You do not have to study other religions to know they are false, if they deviate they are false.

I think you mean "to believe they are false" you can't claim to know as epistemologically speaking you'd need proof.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by stuart torr on Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:46 pm

Sheldon you can see there that PGs English is not always as good as she would like i'm afraid.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Dec 23, 2014 5:58 pm

stuart torr wrote:Sheldon you can see there that PGs English is not always as good as she would like i'm afraid.

I don't think it was a grammatical error to be honest stu, but a claim to knowledge and knowing which he can't evidence.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by stuart torr on Tue Dec 23, 2014 6:23 pm

AH, my apologies first to PG for calling him a she, and for misunderstanding the post, he definitely could not evidence the knowledge could he.
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Does the doctrine of apostolic succession make any sense, even to a Christian?

Post by Ivan on Sat Apr 01, 2017 2:39 pm

You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church.” (Matthew 16:18)

Jesus is supposed to have said this to Simon Peter after declaring him ‘blessed’ for recognising his true identity. What has been lost in translation into English is that ‘Peter’ was a nickname meaning ‘Rocky’. The Irish novelist and poet James Joyce once quipped that the church was “founded on a pun”.

Peter has been called the first bishop of Rome, although a Channel 4 documentary in 2008 disputed the fact that he ever went there. Catholics are taught that he was the first pope and that there has been an uninterrupted transmission of spiritual authority from him through successive popes and the bishops who they appointed. As the historian Sidney Painter explained: “The pope was far more than the administrative head of the church: as the successor to St Peter, he was in a sense the church’s very foundation and the chosen custodian of the Christian way of life.”

This doctrine of apostolic succession is denied by nearly all Protestants, most of whom tend to see the Bible as their principal source of authority. And two flaws immediately spring to mind. Firstly, the Catholic church didn’t exist in its present organisational structure before 606 AD. Secondly, and most pertinently, the line of succession was well and truly broken in the fourteenth century.

In 1305, Clement V was elected pope by the conclave of cardinals. He was a Frenchman and he refused to move to Rome, instead setting up his court in Avignon. The next six popes, all Frenchman, also lived there, but in 1376 Gregory XI moved his court to Rome, where he died soon afterwards. A breakdown in relations between the cardinals and Gregory’s successor, Urban VI, resulted in a second line of popes, so from 1378 there was one pope in Rome and another in Avignon.

Things became even more complicated in 1409. Only a pope is allowed to call a general council of the church, but 24 cardinals, some from each camp, became fed up with the situation and summoned a council to meet at Pisa. The outcome was that both popes were deposed and they chose a new one. However, as neither the pope at Avignon nor the pope in Rome recognised the actions of the council - and therefore wouldn’t accept the decree of deposition - Christendom now had three popes simultaneously.

The third pope was a haughty, intolerant and violent soldier who took the name of John XXIII. The Holy Roman Emperor summoned a council to meet at Constance in 1414 and John had his arm twisted to authorise the meeting. In 1415, the council suspended and then deposed John on charges of fornication, adultery, sodomy, incest and poisoning his predecessor. (His name was later expunged from the list of popes, and there was another John XXIII from 1958 until 1963.) By 1417, the church was back to having just one pope – but what happened to ‘apostolic succession’ in all of this?

Sources:-

http://www.missionsandiego.org/you-are-peter-and-upon-this-rock-i-will-build-my-church/

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/1582585/St-Peter-was-not-the-first-Pope-and-never-went-to-Rome-claims-Channel-4.html

https://www.catholic.com/tract/apostolic-succession

http://www.bible.ca/cath-apostolic-succession.htm

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avignon_Papacy
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by oftenwrong on Sat Apr 01, 2017 6:00 pm

They needn't have bothered, really. There are an estimated 1.2 billion Roman Catholics in the world, according to Vatican figures. (40% of them in Latin America).
The world population as of March 2017 was estimated at 7.49 billion. (The United Nations estimates it will further increase to 11.2 billion in the year 2100).

Mathematically therefore, 6.29 billion people pay little or no attention to what a Pope in Rome may have to say about anything. Though I understand he is a decent chap.

Just to put things into perspective.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Sun Apr 02, 2017 9:03 pm

there has been an uninterrupted transmission of spiritual authority from him through successive popes and the bishops who they appointed.

It says it all surely that people think this kind of self validation amounts to anything, let alone for claims as extraordinary as theistic claims. The fact that other Christians chortle at how ridiculous "those" claims are is also very illuminating.

It's simply unicorn breeders arguing about unicorn husbandry. Until someone "breeds a unicorn" I'm not sure what's worthy of note? Beyond how gullible and suggestible humans can be when they simply choose not to doubt, and instead indulge faith.

I mean William Lane Craig has even managed to convince himself and a swathe of followers that disbelief in something requires faith, talk about the emperor's new clothes. I wonder if he claims to have separate faiths for all the deities he disbelieves in? Not to mention all the unicorns, leprechauns, mermaids, alien abductions, and garden fairies etc.. Rolling Eyes
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by boatlady on Mon Apr 03, 2017 8:52 am

unicorn breeders arguing about unicorn husbandry

witty
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Tue Apr 04, 2017 8:30 pm

Very Happy Thanks, I was going to go with flimflam, but it seemed a little light. "Spiritual authority" though, I mean how can any sane person not see how vapid such opportunistic nonsense is? There's a God, and he says I'm in charge down here, is basically the gist of it. They can chant it in Latin, and swing all the incense burners they like, it's still risible to me.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by boatlady on Wed Apr 05, 2017 3:37 pm

If there is a god - it would be much more interested in nurturing its creation than in setting rules about who can kill who, who can eat what and what the women should wear
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Jsmythe on Wed Apr 05, 2017 5:00 pm

As a parent raisng children with rules ? A sort of "Do Not play with matches!" Rolling Eyes
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Jsmythe on Wed Apr 05, 2017 5:09 pm

Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD wrote:

I mean William Lane Craig has even managed to convince himself and a swathe of followers that disbelief in something requires faith, talk about the emperor's new clothes. I wonder if he claims to have separate faiths for all the deities he disbelieves in? Not to mention all the unicorns, leprechauns, mermaids, alien abductions, and garden fairies etc.. Rolling Eyes

I think he probably means in the context that to say "there can be no such thing as God or other thing outside the realm of mans limited knwledge of the universe" as this would be considered a faith claim.  It is wiser to say your position is from a more agnostic approach being that we don't know enough to know , let alone having a knowledge of something to refute with.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Fri Apr 07, 2017 8:06 am

boatlady wrote:If there is a god - it would be much more interested in nurturing its creation than in setting rules about who can kill who, who can eat what and what the women should wear

Not sure why we need any deity for this, setting rules to maximise wellbeing and reduce suffering seems simply prudent. Luckily animals that have evolved in social groups have by necessity evolved the capacity to be empathetic.

The golden rule trumps any religious diktat I've ever heard. Besides, insisting we ignore reason scientific facts and empathy in favour of immutable archaic commandments and laws is not morality, it's blind obedience.

I feel Godwin's law is about to be fulfilled. Blindly following rules is seldom a good idea.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Fri Apr 07, 2017 8:10 am

Jsmythe wrote:As a parent raisng children with rules ? A sort of "Do Not play with matches!" Rolling Eyes

Sadly a better analogy to religious 'rules' would be only use matches to burn those heretics.

The problems arise when the rules are demonstrably immoral and we're indoctrinated not to disobey or even question them. As I said earlier, that isn't morality.
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Re: From where should a Christian get his or her guidance?

Post by Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD on Fri Apr 07, 2017 8:20 am

Jsmythe wrote:
Dr Sheldon Cooper PhD wrote:

William Lane Craig has even managed to convince himself and a swathe of followers that disbelief in something requires faith,

I think he probably means in the context that to say "there can be no such thing as God or other thing outside the realm of mans limited knwledge of the universe" as this would be considered a faith claim.

That's not atheism though, nor what I  claimed? A lack of belief, or rejection of a claim is neither believing nor asserting an opposite claim.

WLC's mistake is a common one amongst apologists, but since he is a philosopher by profession it's unlikely his error of epistemology is accidental.

WLC is not the only apologists who distorts atheism with this disingenuous logical fallacy to reverse the burden of proof, usually laying the ground for the common logical fallacy of argumentum ad ignorantiam.  

Do you believe mermaids exist? If not then are you using faith to disbelieve in their existence?
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