With ironic respect. Should we thank God that religionists are such hypocrites?

kmiller1610

Former Staff
Mar 2007
31,961
6,201
#21
Were they all fictional TV characters as well?
I interview and analyze people for a living. I have been doing this work since 1974 and have interviewed thousands of people. The interviews are based on their achievement histories. The applications are career guidance, assessment screening for positions and the exploration of strengths. Since each interview covers earliest memories up to current day memories, I get to understand the arcs of real people.

And since the topic is religion, why aren't creative representations of religion by atheists on topic? The OP author is standing up for a very cynical view of religion that is not even shared by some atheists. That was the point.
 
Jun 2014
44,881
44,264
United States
#22
I interview and analyze people for a living. I have been doing this work since 1974 and have interviewed thousands of people. The interviews are based on their achievement histories. The applications are career guidance, assessment screening for positions and the exploration of strengths. Since each interview covers earliest memories up to current day memories, I get to understand the arcs of real people.

And since the topic is religion, why aren't creative representations of religion by atheists on topic? The OP author is standing up for a very cynical view of religion that is not even shared by some atheists. That was the point.

You obviously don't understand the thread topic. That comes as no surprise.
 
Sep 2013
2,136
180
Canada
#23
The Holy Bible is a doctrine by which Christians should live.The Bible is meant for all who would listen and believe. The brotherhood it speaks of is not between a Christian and non-believers, but a brotherhood of Christians. I never understood why people are so upset with the Bible. It really is full of admonitions for the believers. Hypocrisy is one of God's most despised acts. It appears often in the text of the Bible as a admonition. Jesus is about love and forgiveness. But all must remember that God is our Father. A good father loves his children but he usually punishes and then forgives. If we repent and ask for forgiveness does not mean will we necessarily go unpunished. Per the Doctrine of the Bible. All fall short of the glory of God. Though a hypocrite, one can seek forgiveness As far as the fate of Christians or Muslims, only God knows. Every person on the place of this planet could say that God is a myth. Would that make it true? In what manner would that change God? I have said this before. God requires faith for he is not presented as a definitive fact in the Bible. The Bible itself instructs us to have faith in God. For if God were a fact, who would not believe? Except perhaps the insane. But God makes allowances.

To me the most important aspect of the Christian religion is free will. According to the Bible God granted us all free will. Free to chose whether or not we believe. Free to make good choices or bad. All that God asks in return is that we return our free will and let him lead us to salvation. You see, salvation lies with us first. Our choice to believe or not. If you do not believe in Christianity then all of this is moot. The only question will be from whom shall you seek salvation other than yourself? For Atheists see their future as a hole in the ground or whatever vessel they choose. That is where it ends.

The question of God's existence is at this point with all that we have(to those without faith)is a 50/50 chance. Which side of the coin shall you choose to land on? Free will.
I disagree with a lot of what you put but let's see what kind of mind you have and if we can discuss past our biases.

You praise free will as if it was real when speaking of not sinning in us creatures who must sin to survive and thrive.

I have a longer post that goes into evolution and how we are forced to do evil to those we must compete against but that can wait till I see if we can chat honestly. Here is the short answer that ignores evolution for now.


Christians are always trying to absolve God of moral culpability in the fall by whipping out their favorite "free will!", or “ it’s all man’s fault”.

That is "God gave us free will and it was our free willed choices that caused our fall. Hence God is not blameworthy."

But this simply avoids God's culpability as the author of Human Nature. Free will is only the ability to choose. It is not an explanation why anyone would want to choose "A" or "B" (bad or good action). An explanation for why Eve would even have the nature of "being vulnerable to being easily swayed by a serpent" and "desiring to eat a forbidden fruit" must lie in the nature God gave Eve in the first place. Hence God is culpable for deliberately making humans with a nature-inclined-to-fall, and "free will" means nothing as a response to this problem.

If all sin by nature, then the sin nature is dominant. If not, we would have at least some who would not sin. That being the case, for God to punish us for following the instincts and natures he put in us would be quite wrong.

Psalm 51:5 "Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me."

Regards
DL
 
Sep 2013
2,136
180
Canada
#25
Well, the moral code evinced by ancient texts is primitive owing to the nature of the societies that produced them. The Greek myths are riddled with petty jealousies, fits of rage and quite poor behaviour almost universally. It has been posited that the gods were constructed in such a way as to provide lessons in unacceptable behaviour, but I think at times that's quite a stretch, as the culture clearly treated these gods with respect. Whether or not that respect was borne of fear or admiration is difficult to ascertain and it would merely create a generalisation based upon unknown factors if we were to hypothesise on the subject.

When religions began to evolve away from a pantheon of anthropomorphic gods connected to seasons, harvests and abstract emotions into monotheistic concepts, we find a new trend of intolerance toward previous, or alien faiths (Akhenaton tried to erase the Egyptian pantheon and forced the worship of Aten upon the people), which later culminated in waves of extreme violence and purges (cf. the purges Christians waged against pagans during the time of Theodosius I etc.). The mediaeval period saw Christianity and Islam rise to new heights of persecution and barbarity ~ all in the name of God (the Roman persecutions of Christians have been inflated and were brought upon themselves owing to the belief that Jesus would return soon, so they could ignore the prescriptions of the state). Yet the adherents of Christianity believed they were performing God's work, so that justified their extremism, and they continued to devise the most cruel methods of execution they could invent.

Science and the printing press began to erode the hegemony of the Church, and morality slowly became independent of these primitive superstitions and developed along concepts of equity and tolerance ~ concepts, although espoused within the writings of the sayings of Jesus, they were rarely employed.

Now we have shed the constraints of a primitive moral code as a society (the western culture), there are still those that possess the primitive mindset of moral restraint based upon fear of punishment (I must be good or I'll go to Hell), or those who will forgo any moral code in order to promote the faith (extreme fundamentalism). All the Abrahamic faiths elevate a branch of religion above all others, and this can provide justification for the most immoral acts one can conceive (e.g. 9/11). How does the adherent justify such atrocities when the faith clearly promotes otherwise? Simply because God will reward them for doing God's work.

I seem to have digressed from your point somewhat, but to put it simply, when one believes one's faith is the only true faith, and one is predisposed to promoting one's faith with violence, one can justify the worst of acts toward others because God will either forgive that individual, or God will reward that individual.

Therefore, morality is mutable when one has God on his or her side.
Hence the birth of inquisitions and jihads.

"Whoever imagines himself a favorite with God,
holds other people in contempt.
Whenever a man believes that he has the exact truth from God,
there is in that man no spirit of compromise.
He has not the modesty born of the imperfections of human nature;
he has the arrogance of theological certainty and the tyranny born of ignorant assurance.
Believing himself to be the slave of God,
he imitates his master,
and of all tyrants,
the worst is a slave in power."
--Robert Ingersoll


Regards
DL
 
Feb 2011
4,360
817
Ever changing
#29
Yes, because you fail to make any sense whatsoever. First, you argue that, as a Xian, as long as you believe in Jesus, all your sins will be forgiven. Basically, you're talking about a get-into-heaven-free-no-matter-what card. What's more....only Xians have this special membership card, no one else. LOL.

Then you say: "To me the most important aspect of the Christian religion is free will."

But you can't have it both ways, can you? God can't give you free will and then not hold you accountable for your sins. Otherwise, what would be the point of following the Bible at all? So what if you've got it all wrong? I imagine when you die, Satan must jump out from behind St. Peter with a big sign that reads: "Too Bad. You're Going To Hell Anyway."
 
Feb 2011
4,360
817
Ever changing
#30
I said, "To me the most important aspect of the Christian religion is free will. According to the Bible God granted us all free will. Free to chose whether or not we believe. Free to make good choices or bad. All that God asks in return is that we return our free will and let him lead us to salvation

You say, "But you can't have it both ways, can you? God can't give you free will and then not hold you accountable for your sins."

If you turn your life over to God, and make good choices according to the word, then you will be saved. Remember the Lords prayer:

"Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

Note: "Lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil." Once we have given ourselves to God we pray that he lead us from evil.

What is meant by returning the free will granted to God is that you are choosing to believe and live by God's laws. That is live according to the doctrine of the Bible. Christians are not perfect and will make mistakes. If a person sincerely repents and struggles against sin he will be forgiven. However, as the doctrine teaches there is a limit with which one is tolerated in their sin. Neither can one simply say they are a Christian, but must live as one. God judges both the quick(the living) and the dead. So when someone's judgement is made is only known by God. There could be among us the walking damned. So, no. You cannot have it both ways. There is only one way.

When a person first dies that is the corporeal death. When one dies of the second death. That is the death of the soul and that is what requires saving.
 

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