1. Donationbuckky
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    12 Jul '05 21:12
    Instead of having a Book to deal with, would it not be a better idea if God lived in Chicago or any place
    one could go to get the scoop from the horses mouth so to speak ? Look at all the confusion that the Bible has caused. How many denominations claim to have the real Truth. All claiming that they alone understand the true meaning inside the Bible. Why do we not have the option to hear the Truth from someone other than a man ? Send some Angels or any other Heavenly Host to set us straight. The Bible has only caused problems in understanding the nature of God and all we need to know pertaining to whats it all about Alfie.
  2. Joined
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    12 Jul '05 21:25
    Originally posted by buckky
    Instead of having a Book to deal with, would it not be a better idea if God lived in Chicago or any place
    one could go to get the scoop from the horses mouth so to speak ? Look at all the confusion that the Bible has caused. How many denominations claim to have the real Truth. All claiming that they alone understand the true meaning inside the Bible. Why do ...[text shortened]... understanding the nature of God and all we need to know pertaining to whats it all about Alfie.
    i agree that for an omnipotent god, he has done none too well at making his message clear through books and word of mouth. which explains why so many proclaim the 'mysteries' of faith. i think they are indeed mysterious...and uncertain.

    of course, if we view the bible as merely the work of men (none of whom were omnipotent) and nothing more, then things don't seem so mysterious to me.

  3. Standard memberColetti
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    12 Jul '05 21:52
    Originally posted by buckky
    Instead of having a Book to deal with, would it not be a better idea if God lived in Chicago or any place
    one could go to get the scoop from the horses mouth so to speak ? Look at all the confusion that the Bible has caused. How many denominations claim to have the real Truth. All claiming that they alone understand the true meaning inside the Bible. Why do ...[text shortened]... understanding the nature of God and all we need to know pertaining to whats it all about Alfie.
    Would you believe it if it came from an angle? Why would you believe what the angle said? How would you know the angle was and angle and not some demon?

    And if the angle spoke to you, how would you tell others without getting it wrong? Do you have perfect recall? Maybe he should broadcast it by radio. But better would be some sort of recording in case someone missed the broadcast.

    But then, what difference would there be in an video/audio recording and having the angel hand out a book? It seems that a record would be better than an unrecorded radio message, and a written record makes sense.

    Since there was no radio or video technology thousands of year ago, the written recored would be the best option. And if God gave a written record with everything needed in it, what need would there be for updates? A 2000 year old message would be just as valid today as the day it was written - unless truth changes over time. I think 2+2 was true 2000 years ago. So is the proposition "Jesus died to redeem sinners".
  4. 30th Century Earth
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    12 Jul '05 21:55
    Originally posted by Coletti
    Would you believe it if it came from an angle? Why would you believe what the angle said? How would you know the angle was and angle and not some demon?

    And if the angle spoke to you, how would you tell others without getting it wrong? Do you have perfect recall? Maybe he should broadcast it by radio. But better would be some sort of recording in c ...[text shortened]... . I think 2+2 was true 2000 years ago. So is the proposition "Jesus died to redeem sinners".
    i agree
    😀😀🙄😲
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    12 Jul '05 22:021 edit
    Originally posted by Coletti
    Would you believe it if it came from an angle? Why would you believe what the angle said? How would you know the angle was and angle and not some demon?

    And if the angle spoke to you, how would you tell others without getting it wron ...[text shortened]... ears ago. So is the proposition "Jesus died to redeem sinners".
    if god is indeed omnipotent, then he could effectively innately program each person with the knowledge of his existence and with crystal clear instructions detailing how to worship him. he could also do this in a way that does not hinder our free will to ignore or otherwise blatantly refuse to obey such instructions. these instructions would be fully accessible to our intellect and would be untrammelled with respect to the problems that arise from written records -- including variations in reading comprehension and the inability to make such written records accessible to all persons. would this not be preferable to written records? as it stands, billions of sinners have presumably never even heard of jesus.
  6. Donationbuckky
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    12 Jul '05 22:05
    Originally posted by Coletti
    Would you believe it if it came from an angle? Why would you believe what the angle said? How would you know the angle was and angle and not some demon?

    And if the angle spoke to you, how would you tell others without getting it wrong? Do you have perfect recall? Maybe he should broadcast it by radio. But better would be some sort of recording in c ...[text shortened]... . I think 2+2 was true 2000 years ago. So is the proposition "Jesus died to redeem sinners".
    The record is open to interpretation. Thats the problem.To many takes on the same Book.
  7. Standard memberColetti
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    12 Jul '05 22:10
    Originally posted by buckky
    The record is open to interpretation. Thats the problem.To many takes on the same Book.
    So would a auditory message be open to interpretation. There's good reason why a written contract outweighs a verbal one. The details of spoken contract can be quickly forgotten or easily misunderstood. If you want superior way to convey a message, put it in writing. It is not perfect, but it beats other methods.
  8. Standard memberColetti
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    12 Jul '05 22:30
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    if god is indeed omnipotent, then he could effectively innately program each person with the knowledge of his existence and with crystal clear instructions detailing how to worship him. he could also do this in a way that does not hinder our free will to ignore or otherwise blatantly refuse to obey such instructions. these instructions would be fully ac ...[text shortened]... written records? as it stands, billions of sinners have presumably never even heard of jesus.
    if god is indeed omnipotent, then he could effectively innately program each person with the knowledge of his existence and with crystal clear instructions detailing how to worship him.

    I believe He does innately give man knowledge of himself - in theology it called "general revelation".

    these instructions would be fully accessible to our intellect and would be untrammelled with respect to the problems that arise from written records

    Yes, they could be if God determined to do so.

    would this not be preferable to written records? as it stands, billions of sinners have presumably never even heard of jesus.

    It would be preferable to those who have not been given the knowledge of Christ. But clearly God does not prefer this.

    would this not be preferable to written records?

    I think there are two issues here - the message, and believing the message. The message is written so that that those who are instructed to share the message, can do so with less chance of getting it wrong. Since belief of the message is what is need to be save, one must get the correct message. This does not mean one always conveys the message correctly, or that one reads it will understand it, but in general, the truth of the message is easier to understand because it is written.

    But to both understand and believe the message requires supernatural intervention. Some may understand it, and not believe (i.e. know) - but no one understand and believes unless God transforms the mind. Saving faith (belief in the truth gospel message found in the Bible) is a free gift from God. God may convey the knowledge directly to the mind, but He mostly works through the written message either spoken or read.
  9. Standard membertelerion
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    12 Jul '05 22:44
    Originally posted by Coletti
    Would you believe it if it came from an angle? Why would you believe what the angle said? How would you know the angle was and angle and not some demon?

    And if the angle spoke to you, how would you tell others without getting it wrong? Do you have perfect recall? Maybe he should broadcast it by radio. But better would be some sort of recording in c ...[text shortened]... . I think 2+2 was true 2000 years ago. So is the proposition "Jesus died to redeem sinners".
    An omniscent and omnipotent creator would know what is required for every reasonable person to be sure of his existence and would have the potential to cause this state to obtain. In fact, according to the Bible, it will obtain because someday "every knee shall bow and every tongue confess."

    Note however that not every reasonable person is sure of God's existence. The majority of people do not believe in God (here God is your god, not just any deity), and it is tremendously likely that at least one person among them is reasonable. Furthermore, the very fact that you and others (including apologists and xtian theologians) have attempted to offer persuasive arguments for the existence of God would belie the claim that a non-believer of God is unreasonable. If it were the case that we were all unreasonable people than the only logical thing to do is to cease discussion with us. For instance, if you, having knowledge of Euclidean geometry, insist that within its framework the shortest distance between two points is not a straight line, then it is logical for me to conclude that you are simply an unreasonable person and desist conversation on the subject.

    So to any reasonable person the existence of God is not assured. God could and supposedly will make the case obtain that every person (reasonable and unreasonable alike) is assured of his existence.

    The listing of other potential methods which lack efficacy in your opinion are beside the point. Finally, it's "angel" not "angle." Sorry, but that was really bugging me.
  10. Joined
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    12 Jul '05 23:022 edits
    Originally posted by Coletti
    It would be preferable to those who have not been given the knowledge of Christ. But clearly God does not prefer this.

    why would god prefer that some not know about him (or at least not prefer that everyone has knowledge of him)? doesn't he want these people to experience his love and presence? is he not simply sentencing them all to the fires of hell by not even giving them a chance to accept christ? aren't we justified in questioning why god prefers what he prefers?

    But to both understand and believe the message requires supernatural intervention. Some may understand it, and not believe (i.e. know) - but no one understand and believes unless God transforms the mind. Saving faith (belief in the truth gospel message found in the Bible) is a free gift from God.

    then why would god even go through the charade of pretending to actually care about all people if he is only going to grant the special 'you get into heaven because i choose you' pass to a select group? if god willingly transforms only certain minds, but not others, then he also willingly sentences the untransformed minds to hell based on his own construction. if i accept your views, i think it also necessarily commits me to the idea that my god is some sort of quirky trigger-happy madman. if salvation is a gift from god, then (from omniscience) god knows who will and who will not be saved from the get-go. thus he is a callous god for introducing those who will not be saved into this world in the first place.

    EDIT: i do agree with you that written is better than simply word of mouth, but i don't think this concession strengthens your arguments much.
  11. Standard membertelerion
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    12 Jul '05 23:14
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    [b]It would be preferable to those who have not been given the knowledge of Christ. But clearly God does not prefer this.

    why would god prefer that some not know about him (or at least not prefer that everyone has knowledge of him)? doesn't he want these people to experience his love and presence? is he not simply sentencing them all to the fir ...[text shortened]... is a callous god for introducing those who will not be saved into this world in the first place.[/b]
    It is clear that Col can offer no convincing evidence for his god. He appeals to an innate knowledge but cannot demonstrate such a claim in the face of demographic evidence that this is not true.

    If their is abundant evidence such that every reasonable person should arrive at the conclusion that his god exists, then it should be demonstrable. Given that Col cannot point us to this evidence, instead speculating unknown personal reasons for the dearth of evidence, we are quite reasonable in dismissing Col's claims.

  12. Not Kansas
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    12 Jul '05 23:18
    Originally posted by Coletti
    Would you believe it if it came from an angle? Why would you believe what the angle said? How would you know the angle was and angle and not some demon?

    And if the angle spoke to you, how would you tell others without getting it wrong? Do you have perfect recall? Maybe he should broadcast it by radio. But better would be some sort of recording in c ...[text shortened]... . I think 2+2 was true 2000 years ago. So is the proposition "Jesus died to redeem sinners".
    And the rate of radioactive decay remains constant over time?
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    12 Jul '05 23:27
    Originally posted by telerion
    It is clear that Col can offer no convincing evidence for his god. He appeals to an innate knowledge but cannot demonstrate such a claim in the face of demographic evidence that this is not true.

    If their is abundant evidence such that every reasonable person should arrive at the conclusion that his god exists, then it should be demonstrable. Given t ...[text shortened]... nal reasons for the dearth of evidence, we are quite reasonable in dismissing Col's claims.

    i agree. i would add that i am a little shocked and bothered by coletti's complacency toward such a temperamental god. i can certainly see how 'knowing' you are one of the select chosen few could put your mind at ease; but honestly, do you really want to spend an eternity with a god who passes the time by chucking more and more bodies onto the fire? at some point, i'd feel inclined to ask him just who the hell he thinks he is.

    ah, shucks though, i like coletti, and i'm glad he's around to debate these important matters.
  14. Standard membertelerion
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    13 Jul '05 00:193 edits
    Originally posted by LemonJello
    i agree. i would add that i am a little shocked and bothered by coletti's complacency toward such a temperamental god. i can certainly see how 'knowing' you are one of the select chosen few could put your mind at ease; but honestly, ...[text shortened]... and i'm glad he's around to debate these important matters.
    I had an excellent discussion with my brother-in-law and his wife while on vacation. They are both xtians, she from childhood and he a convert of some 4 or 5 years. They have become less attached to church in the last year or so, and this relaxation of dogma allowed us to have an open discussion.

    They began by questioning what my atheism was and wondering how anyone could not believe. I responded by arguing from the presumption of atheism. I then moved to philosphical and moral objections to being a xtian.

    When I got to the problem of needless pain and suffering, they conceded that everything that exists in creation must be the will of God by the omni-attributes of God and his standing as Creator. What bewildered me was their apathy to its implications. Consider:

    Me: . . . therefore every child rape that has and will occur is the will of God.

    Them: Yes. So?

    Me: So you are worshipping a god that conceived and desires child rape.

    Them: So?

    Me: Doesn't that bother you just a little bit?

    Them: No. He is God. He can do what he wants.

    So in the end, I boiled down our postions to the following three disagreements (they agreed with this exact characterization of their position):

    First, as to the morality of God, it does not bother them that God commands many seemingly evil actions in the Bible. He is God and therefore he can do it. They were not persuaded by my pointing out that this was a wholesale embrace of "might makes right" and subsequent my subsequent illustrations of the weakness of this argument.

    Second, as to the philosophical arguments against the existence of their god, God just is. Even if it cannot make any sense, he just exists.

    Third, as to the inerrancy of the Scripture, which they use as evidence of the existence of God, the abundance of conflicts with natural laws does not incline them to suspect that the Bible is simply another collection of stories from people ignorant of the workings of the universe. God must have done it because God exists.

    I concluded then by stating that our key difference is that they felt epistemiologically justified in holding both of these positions and that I did not. Further, I pointed out that the belief in any entity could be supported by their standard.

    Overall, I was pleased with the conversation. Though a bit perplexed at their willingness to concede so many horrible things about their god.

  15. Hmmm . . .
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    13 Jul '05 00:471 edit
    Originally posted by telerion
    I had an excellent discussion with my brother-in-law and his wife while on vacation. They are both xtians, she from childhood and he a convert of some 4 or 5 years. They have become less attached to church in the last year or so, and thi ...[text shortened]... illingness to concede so many horrible things about their god.

    No. He is God. He can do what he wants.

    Tel, not picking on your relatives, but this kind of statement is a crystal clear example of what others on here—and elsewhere—have sometimes seemed to imply, but perhaps not so straightforwardly. It’s a far cry from the “I think God is good, and if there aren’t any reasonable explanations for suffering, then there just aren’t” type of stance, for example.

    So, I want to ask, did they give any reason why they would worship such a God under such conditions? Did you get any impression that they would be afraid to not worship such a God? I’m thinking of being afraid in two ways: 1) That it might undermine their own salvation (that, I think, is my mother’s fear, for example); or 2) that such a God—like the old storm and fire gods—is simply…well, frightening, and so placation is the best course.
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