1. Joined
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    27 Feb '13 14:211 edit
    Over the years I've known a number of Christians who seemed to be without conscience beyond perhaps displaying outward signs of contrition.

    Perhaps the following from a post on another thread sheds light on why this may be the case:
    God's grace and mercy cleans us of all our sins, we are free from the guilt and shame we have over the things we did in deed do. Those things are charged to Jesus due to His mercy through God's grace and our sins are thrown as far as the east is from the west.


    Seems that the belief that one has been freed from "guilt and shame" by God would serve to undermine the role that conscience should take.

    How common is this belief common amongst Christians?
  2. Standard memberkaroly aczel
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    27 Feb '13 14:48
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Over the years I've known a number of Christians who seemed to be without conscience beyond perhaps displaying outward signs of contrition.

    Perhaps the following from a post on another thread sheds light on why this may be the case:
    [quote]God's grace and mercy cleans us of all our sins, we are free from the guilt and shame we have over the things we ...[text shortened]... role that conscience should take.

    How common is this belief common amongst Christians?
    I reckon they would be in the majority in most congregations in my city.

    I admit I live in relative boondocks as far as "true Christianity" is concerned, but I live in the same society and there are plenty of avenues for genuine seekers of Christianity /spirituality. Heck, we even get Tibetan monks coming to share their wisdom and teach those who are interested.

    But sadly I see most people as not really believing in God,(but because they have not even bothered to even look into it, not because they have formulated any decent reasons for not doing so - like our fine atheists friends on here).

    Then again for the few that have a gander they will often find that there are more than the fair share of Christian preachers who are frothing at their mouths ready to condemn the new possible adept by showing them their own guilts and shames - even if they dont have them. (Apparently those dont have guilt or shame are just in denial). Not very appealing .
  3. Cape Town
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    27 Feb '13 15:03
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Seems that the belief that one has been freed from "guilt and shame" by God would serve to undermine the role that conscience should take.
    It is clear that some posters here believe it is OK to lie or use other forms of dishonesty in order to convert people to Christianity. Similarly many theists feel that just about any means necessary is OK when it comes to getting children to follow their religion.

    However, I recently saw something about the catholic confessional (I forget exactly where, but I think possibly an RSA talk on youtube) where they said that people who do wrong, tend to feel that since they have already gone towards the dark side and a little more wrong won't hurt, whereas the confessional allows people to get a clean slate and are more likely to try and stay clean than someone who feels morally sullied.
  4. Joined
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    27 Feb '13 21:312 edits
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    Over the years I've known a number of Christians who seemed to be without conscience beyond perhaps displaying outward signs of contrition.

    Perhaps the following from a post on another thread sheds light on why this may be the case:
    [quote]God's grace and mercy cleans us of all our sins, we are free from the guilt and shame we have over the things we role that conscience should take.

    How common is this belief common amongst Christians?
    I don't think it's scriptural

    ( we are free from the guilt and shame we have over the things we role that conscience should take.)
  5. Joined
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    27 Feb '13 21:41
    Originally posted by karoly aczel
    I reckon they would be in the majority in most congregations in my city.

    I admit I live in relative boondocks as far as "true Christianity" is concerned, but I live in the same society and there are plenty of avenues for genuine seekers of Christianity /spirituality. Heck, we even get Tibetan monks coming to share their wisdom and teach those who are ...[text shortened]... ave them. (Apparently those dont have guilt or shame are just in denial). Not very appealing .
    Then again for the few that have a gander they will often find that there are more than the fair share of Christian preachers who are frothing at their mouths ready to condemn the new possible adept by showing them their own guilts and shames - even if they dont have them.

    By "their own guilts and shames" do you mean "their sins"?
  6. Joined
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    27 Feb '13 21:581 edit
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    It is clear that some posters here believe it is OK to lie or use other forms of dishonesty in order to convert people to Christianity. Similarly many theists feel that just about any means necessary is OK when it comes to getting children to follow their religion.

    However, I recently saw something about the catholic confessional (I forget exactly whe a clean slate and are more likely to try and stay clean than someone who feels morally sullied.
    It is clear that some posters here believe it is OK to lie or use other forms of dishonesty in order to convert people to Christianity. Similarly many theists feel that just about any means necessary is OK when it comes to getting children to follow their religion.

    Well, it does seem that many Christians don't have a very high regard for truth. Not sure if it's more common amongst Christians than non-Christians, but it often does seem that way. It's made all the more perplexing by the fact that a large emphasis is put on 'truth' in the Bible.

    However, I recently saw something about the catholic confessional (I forget exactly where, but I think possibly an RSA talk on youtube) where they said that people who do wrong, tend to feel that since they have already gone towards the dark side and a little more wrong won't hurt, whereas the confessional allows people to get a clean slate and are more likely to try and stay clean than someone who feels morally sullied.

    If you can find the source for this, I'd be interested in seeing it. I imagine that there might be a bit of a tendency to "feel that since they have already gone towards the dark side and a little more wrong won't hurt", I'd think it would be a small minority. What does seem to be more prevalent is where they believe that because of "original sin" they aren't really responsible for their failings. They "confess", believe that God forgives them thereby circumventing any impactful feelings of "guilt and shame". After all, if God forgives them, what is there to feel guilt or shame about? This cycle then repeats itself time and again without conscience and therefore without meaningful change.
  7. Joined
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    27 Feb '13 21:591 edit
    Originally posted by divegeester
    I don't think it's scriptural

    ( we are free from the guilt and shame we have over the things we role that conscience should take.)
    I don't think it's scriptural

    What, specifically, don't you think is scriptural?

    we are free from the guilt and shame we have over the things we role that conscience should take

    No idea what you were trying for here. Can you rephrase?
  8. Standard memberkaroly aczel
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    28 Feb '13 03:26
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    [b]Then again for the few that have a gander they will often find that there are more than the fair share of Christian preachers who are frothing at their mouths ready to condemn the new possible adept by showing them their own guilts and shames - even if they dont have them.

    By "their own guilts and shames" do you mean "their sins"?[/b]
    They are a result of 'sin', I guess. I was just trying to use the terminology from the op, and guilt and shame seem to stem from something discordant in ones life, which I ascociate with 'sin' in the Christian sense.
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    28 Feb '13 06:22
    Originally posted by ThinkOfOne
    If you can find the source for this, I'd be interested in seeing it.
    YouTube

    What does seem to be more prevalent is where they believe that because of "original sin" they aren't really responsible for their failings.
    I think there is some of that. I frequently see Christians blaming Satan for everything bad, including their own actions. There is a sort of shift, from "I did wrong" or "I did right" to "I chose to follow God" or "I chose to give in to Satans temptation". So it is the choice that becomes the moral action, not the actions themselves.

    They "confess", believe that God forgives them thereby circumventing any impactful feelings of "guilt and shame". After all, if God forgives them, what is there to feel guilt or shame about? This cycle then repeats itself time and again without conscience and therefore without meaningful change.
    I am not convinced that this is such a big effect as one might think. I think most theists I know do try to live a morally good life to a large degree, though some are more moral than others. In fact, I would say that it is possible that theists actually try harder than atheists, because they are regularly reminded of it.
    I think the real flaw with religion, is it skews morality quite badly. There are two effects here:
    1. Many things that are in fact immoral are coded as moral by the religion and can thus be used either as an excuse to justify something the theist knows to in fact be immoral, or can in fact actually convince the theist that it is moral.
    2. The concept of eternity and God being infinitely greater than our tiny little meaningless lives on earth, allows theists to downplay their actions here as being insignificant. Thus they can justify anything that is for the 'greater good' ie converting others etc as being far more important than little immoral actions (such as lieing).

    I think it would be educational at this point if the Theists were to give justifications for why they think they lie. There are a number of theists on this forum who lie regularly, and know they are doing it, and sometimes even admit to it. Would any of you care to participate?
  10. SubscriberSuzianne
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    01 Mar '13 17:22
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    I think it would be educational at this point if the Theists were to give justifications for why they think they lie. There are a number of theists on this forum who lie regularly, and know they are doing it, and sometimes even admit to it. Would any of you care to participate?
    Have you swung entirely to the atheist side of this and just take it as a fact that all theists lie?

    I would be careful of applying the actions of a few to the majority.
  11. Joined
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    01 Mar '13 17:45
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XBmJay_qdNc

    [b]What does seem to be more prevalent is where they believe that because of "original sin" they aren't really responsible for their failings.

    I think there is some of that. I frequently see Christians blaming Satan for everything bad, including their own actions. There is a sort of shift, from "I did wro ...[text shortened]... doing it, and sometimes even admit to it. Would any of you care to participate?[/b]
    I haven't forgotten about this. I've been having problems with my internet connection and can't play videos. I wanted to see it before responding. They're sending out a tech late tomorrow, so hopefully they'll be able to get things squared away and I'll be able to view it.
  12. Cape Town
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    01 Mar '13 18:01
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    Have you swung entirely to the atheist side of this and just take it as a fact that all theists lie?
    Not only do I not 'take it as a fact that all theists lie', but I don't think such a view is 'the atheist side' either.

    I would be careful of applying the actions of a few to the majority.
    I actually think that the majority of theists on this site are more dishonest in the way they present their arguments than the majority of atheists on this site. But maybe the more honest theists simply don't get involved in arguments here perhaps?
    What are your views on the matter? Are you OK with lying if it promotes your religion? Do you/would you lie to children to keep them in your religion?
  13. SubscriberSuzianne
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    01 Mar '13 23:01
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    Not only do I not 'take it as a fact that all theists lie', but I don't think such a view is 'the atheist side' either.

    [b]I would be careful of applying the actions of a few to the majority.

    I actually think that the majority of theists on this site are more dishonest in the way they present their arguments than the majority of atheists on this ...[text shortened]... it promotes your religion? Do you/would you lie to children to keep them in your religion?[/b]
    It depends on whether you mean I'm promoting ideas that you think are lies, or ideas that I know are lies.

    For example, I may tell children that Jesus loves them, but you might consider that a lie. I might tell them about God, as an old man in the sky, which I know is a lie. Santa is a lie, too, but kids are still told this as a way to get them to go to bed early on Christmas eve.

    I'm not a big proponent of telling lies in general, but everyone tells some lies, usually they are of the "little white lie" variety, like "No, dear, you absolutely do not look fat in that dress."
  14. Joined
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    01 Mar '13 23:512 edits
    Originally posted by twhitehead
    ... since they have already gone towards the dark side and a little more wrong won't hurt, whereas the confessional allows people to get a clean slate and are more likely to try and stay clean than someone who feels morally sullied.
    Twenty years ago I watched a TV documentary on some Mafia family. I was surprised to see that they had Roman Catholic saint statues and rosary beads in their house.
  15. Cape Town
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    02 Mar '13 06:24
    Originally posted by Suzianne
    It depends on whether you mean I'm promoting ideas that you think are lies, or ideas that I know are lies.
    I am talking about the latter. I am talking about when the Santa and old man in the sky stories get more and more elaborate and people literally threaten their children with hell in order to scare them into going to Church.

    For example, I may tell children that Jesus loves them, but you might consider that a lie.
    No, I am definitely not talking about things that you believe to be true.

    I'm not a big proponent of telling lies in general, but everyone tells some lies, usually they are of the "little white lie" variety, like "No, dear, you absolutely do not look fat in that dress."
    I am not talking about white lies either. I am talking about when Robbie quotes a 'scientific study' that was done 40 years ago that he has quoted before and been told that the study has since been proven false.
    I am talking about when RJHinds talks about Evil-ution, (knowing perfectly well that his definition of the term is quite different from what other people define it as) and will happily state any amount of nonsense that he knows to be untrue to try and defend the Bible.

    I think you believe some of the most ridiculous things, and find it somewhat hypocritical of you when you criticize creationists, but I cannot recall you telling any obvious lies.
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