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lozerfac3
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lozerfac3
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-----Original Topic-----

Is following Christ (or lack of following Christ) a heart issue rather than an intellectual issue? Do you reject Christ because of evidence or do you reject Christ because you are satisfied with things of this world rather than God? I'm bringing this topic up because I have found a new love and appreciation for God, but also because I kinda miss debating if I'm going to be honest. I wanted to see how my new knowledge of God will fare against your arguments. I hope to only speak the truth and I pray that God will speak into your hearts. I'm not sure if these are good questions tho, so feel free to change the subject.

-----Revised Topic-----
4/29/20
When I wrote this, it was impulsive. I just wanted to debate because I wanted a sense of purpose. I didn't put any thought into the questions.

Now this topic is just Christianity in general, I think. To guide the conversation, I want to answer these questions: What is the true essence of Christianity and why is it different from other religions?

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thebluerabbit
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That makes sense. Then, I don't really know how to answer your question. I just can't come up with a scenario where God did things differently, and that's my own shortcoming.

im not talking about a scenario where god would have done differently. im talking about a person who believes in a god with an identical character to yours but not in your religion.

And then I said God chooses who to reveal Himself to. I hear you man

which means there were people who had no chance to ever know about god. which means they could never believe in him.

But the thing is, no one is backed into a corner. Here, you have the free will to do what you want. You are comparing it to someone pointing a gun at your head "suggesting" that you give them your wallet, when it's more like a father laying out the rules of the house. A father can tell you what to do for your benefit and safety. So God does does tell you what to do, but it's in your best interest to obey. That's what I'm trying to get at

a father doesnt burn you in hell for all eternity. your god isnt just tell me something for my benefit, he tells me "do this or burn in hell". people are backed into a corner.
and the whole "free will" part is hypocritical when it comes to that.
"you can choose freely, but i will harm you if you choose something i tell you not to."

its also in my best interest to obey the person whos threatening me with the gun just as much.

What is an out of jail card? Why is it wrong?

its wrong because one should be judged on their morals, not their religion. you shouldnt get better treatment for happening to believe in the right god, while a person who is a much better person than you will suffer.

its wrong because it takes away your responsibility when doing something bad just because you are religious. its obviously wrong.

My point wasn't to say it is a science. My point was to say how I use inductive vs. deductive reasoning.

the point isnt calling it science. the point is showing that its flawed.

I agree that Christianity is more of a religion in this case. But, my point still stands that studying the Bible which is the word of God, you are led to Christianity.

actually, since the bible isnt the word of god, studying it and believing in it leads away from him and makes you susceptible to being brainwashed by figures of authority in that religion.

as said before, if you just plainly make such claims, i will just contradict them. when you refuse to be critical and just drill those assumptions as arguments, you arent making points anymore.

Are you kidding me? Most abolitionists used Christian teachings to support their cause.

so? do i need to give you examples of what awful things some people used christian teachings to justify. slavery was an example. you cant just give me examples of people who used christians as a motive to do something good and ignore the opposite.

also, religion should never be the reason to do something good. if religion is the reason a person is good, that person isnt really good. you should do good because it is good.

Why?

because you actively say some people are better than others based on religion, sex, sexuality etc. and therefore also treat them differently.

I think you're taking what I'm saying out of context.

im not taking them out of context, im telling you what the consequences are for them, and you dont like them. if logic is the farthest limit of our conception, and logic is below god, meaning we cant reach his religion with logic alone, then following that logic and not believing shouldnt be a sin.

What does it mean to have godly wisdom to you?

of course to believe in the true nature of god. i hope one day you can see the truth, reject your misguided ways and have faith in the true god. then you will be saved from god, because he is good and loves you, you can do it.

Even you know those people were wrong and did evil actions. They might have felt like it was God's calling, but if you read the Bible, you can tell that they are no better than the evil tyrants that God tears down and prophesies against mostly in the Old Testament. Everything is in the Bible, dawg. That's why Christians are more lovely now. They have a stronger connection to the Word. We are able to read it in our own language. The Roman Catholics back then made it so that only a priest can interpret the Word because it was written in Latin or something. I hope you see the cause and effect of that

again, just a convenient explanation you use to justify your religion. "even" i can see what they did was wrong not because im religious or read the bible, but because im a good person who doesnt harm people who i feel are different from me or have different beliefs.

people did some awful things in the name of your religion, and you desperately need to find an excuse instead of acknowledging that yeah, maybe your religion actually isnt true, good and perfect.
also, christians dont have a stronger connection to their religion today. christianity is practically the most revised and changed religion out of the three abrahamic ones. a 100 years from now, if gay marriage will be widely accepted by christianity, someone like you will just say that the people who rejected it today were wrong and didnt understand the word correctly.

saying the bad people who shared your religion just misunderstood your religion is taking the easy way out. one should accept both the good and the bad that their religion has caused, without resorting to the "no true scotsman" fallacy.

Then don't use subjective means to come up with God.

im not though. if you think that just because you are more closely following a recipe that was written a while ago, your god is more objective than mine, you are heavily mistaken.

i will not limit my belief to what other people tell me and an accepted narrative, which was edited who knows how many times. if anything, your god is more subjective, because you are saying that his character and nature can only be understood through a narrative.

i dont need a story to explain my god, his nature and how he acts.

This is subjective because everyone has different perceptions of perfection.

just because my perception is subjective, doesnt mean the god i believe in is subjective. the fact i accept i could be wrong already adds an element of objectivism that you lack.

and assuming your claim here is coorect. by your logic, if everyone has a different perception of perfection, that would mean you do too, and so your god is subjective as well.

also, your claim that everybody has a different perception of what is perfection is also a little bit flawed. perfection is a very easy concept to understand, even if it is difficult to imagine.

perfect is whole, has all good aspects, lacks no good aspects, possess no bad aspects, is one etc. etc.

To me, this is a good thing. Is there something I don't understand?

the fact that you can throw away responsibility over the things you do. while other people who are better people than you will still suffer.

if you dont understand why thats just wrong, i dont know how to be clearer.

It does matter because it means we are humbling ourselves. We believe that we are ALL THE SAME. We are all fallen creatures. Everyone from every religion and non religion are in the same boat. Christians are just as horrible, but Christ is greater.

that doesnt matter. one could say the same thing regarding anything. i am better because im rich. and its not because im better, but because i deserve being rich. i mean, i am rich and you are poor. there must a reason for that. i got the good life while you got the bad life for reason that surpass us.

it is very self centered, and using religion as a medium to also claim you are humble only makes it worse.

christians are not better than anyone else. and i know many people who are atheists who are better than many christians.

You are using everything I'm saying to bring it to different arguments. Claiming we are "better" does not mean we don't bother to challenge our own views. The argument here is that we HAVE TO challenge our own beliefs because the heart is deceitful; we are just as bad as everyone else. When we take on Christ, we have to continue to question if what we do is right for the sake of righteousness.

no. when you choose which views to challenge, you arent challenging your views. when you challenge your views because those views contradict your religion, its like a smoker saying he has a strong willpower because his will to smoke is greater than his will to not smoke.

if you cant doubt your own religion and refuse to do so, you are not challenging your views.

the point here is to question everything, not just the things you have to challenge in order to always hold that one single belief you wont ever question.

I can agree to this. I will add on to this by saying, if morality is not tied to a "natural law, physical constant or deity" then everything you come up with will be subjective

i suppose so, though the deity part is also problematic.
if the deity itself literally could not be different, is the manifestation of morality and identical to it, could not change morality on a whim etc. etc. then yes.

if the deity is just a person who is the most powerful, it is still subjective.

Why is religion subjective and not your views? It sounds like hypocrisy, but I'm not going to go that far. I'm just having a hard time trying to understand this reasoning.

well, first and foremost. religion claims it cant be wrong. i claim i could be wrong. that already makes me more objective than religion. second, as said before, religion (at least the abrahamic ones) are based on a narrative. a story. that is subjective. when you start adding interpretations and mental loops to make it stay consistent, its even more subjective.

my views as views are subjective. the god i believe in isnt. because again, i could be wrong, and im not inserting a narrative (at least inherently) to god.

religion is also more universal, and so it changes based on the people that it lives through. especially christianity. the more people talk about it, change it, edited it, the more it gets "tainted" with subjectivity that is acknowledged as the true nature of that religion.

you only have to jump back in time a 100 years and you will see how most religions were almost completely different from today. in order to survive, religions have to change and appease the believers. if a religion becomes so outdated on the level that it isnt relevant to modern times anymore, and that nobody wants to follow it anymore, it just dies.

its why christianity is probably the most influential religion today. it had the power, and it also went through the changes that made it easier for people to continue believing. and it is still changing, and will continue to change in order to stay relevant.

HahiHa
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@thebluerabbit

i know what you mean when you say morality isnt objective, i still disagree.
what you think is morality, isnt actually morality, its our intuition/believes/tools of what it is and to expose it.

the subjective thing you are describing is what we think morality is, not morality itself.

I do think you're committing the same mistake you told lozerfac3 not to do, which is using your personal beliefs as a base to explain reality. What is morality, after all? It is a set of values held by a moral individual about what is right and what is wrong. That is not our perception of morality, that IS what morality is. The difference between you and me is that you believe there exists an objective, absolute set of values intrinsic to reality - for which there is absolutely no evidence, or else we'd know that. Philosophers have argued back and forth on this matter, of course, but from a factual, scientific point of view, such a thing has not yet been proven to exist afaik. You're naturally welcome to correct me, but then I'd ask for hard evidence.

for example, i wouldnt be able to judge someone so harshly (or maybe even at all), if he resorted to cannibalism in a dire situation where he and his friend would have both died and he was so hungry that he was practically going insane.

That's a good example of moral relativism, though. If morality was absolute, this would be equally wrong no matter the circumstance.

morality does use sound arguments, explanations and logic, and i support that. "the world" dictates what arguments explain the reason something would be wrong and right.

Correction: 'the world' explains why someone would consider something right or wrong. Reasoning and logic may be sound, but it doesn't automatically make an argument a law of nature. A particular act is not wrong by itself, it becomes wrong when a moral individual decides it is, for whatever reason.

god cant be subjective by definition. and im not just making a god up, im following my idea of perfection in an entity, which is god. it is the same thing you do, except you think your idea of god is correct because youve been taught that it is correct, and you follow the idea that is written in a book.
there is a difference between totally making something up, and assuming this is the nature of object X and believing in it.

If I may intervene from an outside perspective, believing in God based on scripture and teachings sounds more objective than believing in a God that is your personal idea of perfection. The latter is exclusively subjective, unless you consider your personal ideas and concepts to be the absolute truth, which would be one hell of a claim.

the fact i accept i could be wrong already adds an element of objectivism that you lack.

Accepting you might be wrong only says you don't know for certain, that's it. It doesn't add any objectivity to your faith, as your faith is by definition subjective. It also doesn't make your God any more or less real, as his existence likely isn't dependent of your faith.

@lozerfac3
This is one of those things that are not answered in the Bible, so it's hard to answer. I don't think this is a good argument against God regardless because you are assuming that you know what God would do or what his will is. This is God's way of operating.

Assuming is all I can do, though I don't assume to know; I am merely saying it makes absolutely no sense to me. And aren't you, too, assuming when you say that "God doesn't work purely through supernatural means. News spreads through mediums like speech, letters, text, websites, etc. so God will use those things to spread the gospel."? I guess this is just one of those bits where everyone shrugs and says "God's ways are not our ways".

I believe in it because it tells me that God can do something about it. It's kinda freeing because I don't have to do the work.

I don't know why, but I find that statement strangely disquieting. First word that came to my mind when reading this was 'apathy'. I think it is also a somewhat twisted reasoning (from my atheist point of view; maybe I'd judge it differently if I was a believer to begin with): you're saying it's OK to accept that you are fundamentally evil only for the benefit/relief of divine intervention? I may be caricaturing a bit, but it's essentially how it comes across. I've definitely heard better motivational messages
thebluerabbit
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I do think you're committing the same mistake you told lozerfac3 not to do, which is using your personal beliefs as a base to explain reality. What is morality, after all? It is a set of values held by a moral individual about what is right and what is wrong. That is not our perception of morality, that IS what morality is. The difference between you and me is that you believe there exists an objective, absolute set of values intrinsic to reality - for which there is absolutely no evidence, or else we'd know that. Philosophers have argued back and forth on this matter, of course, but from a factual, scientific point of view, such a thing has not yet been proven to exist afaik. You're naturally welcome to correct me, but then I'd ask for hard evidence.

there i a difference. im not telling you what is right or wrong. im telling you what i think is right or wrong. even if i claim there is an objective good, im not claiming i know what is it 100%. the fact im saying i could be wrong about what it is, shows i accept my own opinions as subjective.

similar to a math problem. where i am not sure, i will still give an answer if i think i might be correct. on the other hand, when it is a simpler question i can answer, i will say it with more certainty.

if you are looking for a scientific explanation of morality, you will be disappointed. but the most basic scientific assumptions also cant be proved by science. we accept those assumptions and axioms in order to start doing science and reach conclusions. one could always doubt those assumptions and axioms to contradict those conclusions. the question is, how far are you willing to go.

those scientific assumptions rely on our intuitions, beliefs and perception, just as much as assumptions on morality do.
the difference between you and me, is the argument on what morality truly is and you are trying to correct me. it seems to me as if you think im confused about what morality actually is, which leads to my judgement, instead of realising i know what you think it is and i disagree on it.

That's a good example of moral relativism, though. If morality was absolute, this would be equally wrong no matter the circumstance.

no. just because im claiming morality is absolute, doesnt mean i am claiming it isnt complex. you misunderstand what im saying.

the fact i gave you an explanation why that person wouldnt be judged as harshly shows a moral argument that claims to be objective. the example isnt an "exception" of the absolute morality, it is a more complex issue that needs to take multiple elements into consideration before making a judgement.

objective morality isnt "cannibalism is bad and anyone who does it is evil". objective morality is the idea that you can take every situation, apply it to the objective morality, and get a correct judgement.

Correction: 'the world' explains why someone would consider something right or wrong. Reasoning and logic may be sound, but it doesn't automatically make an argument a law of nature. A particular act is not wrong by itself, it becomes wrong when a moral individual decides it is, for whatever reason.

again, no. you are just contradicting me, "correcting" me. i disagree with what you say. the world and logic are inherent to each other. our logic cant survive in a totally different world, and in a totally different world, rules of logic and nature would be different.

logic itself is a rule of nature. a particular act, with the addition of all circumstances, is indeed right or wrong by itself.

If I may intervene from an outside perspective, believing in God based on scripture and teachings sounds more objective than believing in a God that is your personal idea of perfection. The latter is exclusively subjective, unless you consider your personal ideas and concepts to be the absolute truth, which would be one hell of a claim.

it seems that way at first, but when you consider all the changes religion has, all the interpretation one does in order to make it consistent with itself and their own intuitions, cherry picking what is relevant and what isnt, or what is literal and what is a metaphor, it definitely is, because it makes everything more vague, and even contradicting opinions could be possible.

when you base things on your own intuition, dont bother with interpreting something else to make it suit yourself, and are able to create a system where you could be wrong, you are being objective.

also, when you take into consideration the fact the books were written by people with their own thought and beliefs, you realise that believing in a book, just means you believe in someone elses opninions.

this would be different if for example, the book we would be talking about didnt have a narrative, but a very clear description of everything that is relevant. clear judgements on clear sins, clear ideas of morality, and leaves no room for interpretation.

that would also be a system where you could be judged as wrong. when you cant put doubt on what you believe in, and have no system that could show you your opinion is wrong, you dont believe in an objective system.

also, while i wouldnt consider my ideas to be absolute, but the idea of perfection is very clear to the average person. a narrative on its own, taints perfection with a story, conflicts, interpretations etc.

that is why many religious people who believe in a narrative have a problem answering criticism that shows how imperfect the belief they have is by showing all its flaws.

Accepting you might be wrong only says you don't know for certain, that's it. It doesn't add any objectivity to your faith, as your faith is by definition subjective. It also doesn't make your God any more or less real, as his existence likely isn't dependent of your faith.

objective and real arent the same thing. and when i believe in a system that could claim i am wrong about things, that means that system is objective.

if you believe in a system, without doubting it, or any of your beliefs of its nature, which also means that system itself can never tell you you are wrong about something, you are not believing in an objective system.

i would also argue that again, having such a narrative which cant be "discovered" by someone who wasnt connected to it in the first place, also makes it subjective. a person who doesnt know the narrative, cant be christian.
though in order to believe in what i believe in, that person doesnt need to know a narrative, or be presented with it. my belief can be reached by anyone who does believe in a god but isnt willing to believe or follow a narrative.

maybe the small details of our ideas could be slightly different, but the "religion/non-religion" would be the same. we would also be able to argue with each other, using nothing but logic and try to convince each other of the nature of god and morality. and that argument wouldnt use quotes and subjective interpretation of a scripture to support itself.
only pure philosophy.

I don't know why, but I find that statement strangely disquieting. First word that came to my mind when reading this was 'apathy'. I think it is also a somewhat twisted reasoning (from my atheist point of view; maybe I'd judge it differently if I was a believer to begin with): you're saying it's OK to accept that you are fundamentally evil only for the benefit/relief of divine intervention? I may be caricaturing a bit, but it's essentially how it comes across. I've definitely heard better motivational messages

nope, i have voiced similar worries. i agree with you, even as a religious person. apathy is a very good and accurate to describe how this feels. and frankly, this is what i usually feel when religious people have non religious friends and are somehow totally fine with themselves believing those friends going to hell.

HahiHa
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if you are looking for a scientific explanation of morality, you will be disappointed.

Sorry if I came across a bit haughty in that last bit, but basically I'm asking you to demonstrate to me how morality is objective. Several times you've tried to assert that morality was like math and whatnot, without actually supporting that claim. A mathematical problem has a correct, demonstrable answer. If morals were like math, moral problem would also have demonstrable, correct answers. So the true, objective morality you speak of should be deducible. Support that(/your) argument convincingly, and I might change my mind.

the difference between you and me, is the argument on what morality truly is and you are trying to correct me. it seems to me as if you think im confused about what morality actually is, which leads to my judgement, instead of realising i know what you think it is and i disagree on it.

Then we're both in it, because not only were you the one who started to criticize me for being a moral relativist, you then constantly claimed that what I think morality is is not what it actually is (i.e., what you think it is). I've simply argued against (as one would do in an argument) because I disagree on your concept of morality.

those scientific assumptions rely on our intuitions, beliefs and perception, just as much as assumptions on morality do.

So, basically you're saying that your claim that morality is objective is a subjective premise that you just accept and that cannot be proven or contradicted by scientific methods?
... You could have just said "Oh, you're a relativist? Well, I disagree", instead of telling me that my definition of morality is wrong :/

no. just because im claiming morality is absolute, doesnt mean i am claiming it isnt complex. you misunderstand what im saying.

Hang on. Moral absolutism claims that acts are intrinsically right or wrong. If you say that morality is absolute, then it can't be complex; it is always right or wrong independent of situation. Moral universalism on the other hand, would allow for that complexity while still being opposed to relativism. So the question is, based on your claims, do I have to assume you are a non-absolutist universalist?

again, no. you are just contradicting me, "correcting" me. i disagree with what you say. the world and logic are inherent to each other. our logic cant survive in a totally different world, and in a totally different world, rules of logic and nature would be different.

Now you're misunderstanding me. At no point have I ever said that logic was not inherent to our world. What I said, is that just because an argument is formally logical, doesn't mean its conclusion must necessarily be factual. Trying to bring this back to the initial point, while moral values aren't always very rational (particularly the more culturally related ones), we both agree that certain moral values (like those about theft and murder) can be argued for logically. I used that argument against your claim that relativism would only lead to pure fancy. But I'm also arguing that just because it can be argued for in a logically formal way, doesn't mean it is necessarily universally true, which ties back to the quote above.

it seems that way at first, but when you consider all the changes religion has, all the interpretation one does in order to make it consistent with itself and their own intuitions, cherry picking what is relevant and what isnt, or what is literal and what is a metaphor, it definitely is, because it makes everything more vague, and even contradicting opinions could be possible.

Oh believe me, I never said that religion, even based on scripture, was perfectly objective. No sirree. I just said it was more objective (or perhaps more appropriately less subjective) than this:

when you base things on your own intuition, dont bother with interpreting something else to make it suit yourself, and are able to create a system where you could be wrong, you are being objective.

- Being objective means avoiding personal biases and perception. Basing something off of your own intuition is not objective, as it is exclusively concerned with your subjective perspective.
- Whether you have blind faith or accept you may be wrong, we're still talking about faith in a supernatural entity. You're delusional if you think allowing for a certain uncertainty somehow makes your faith on par with the scientific method. (If that really is what you're thinking; I assume it is based on the way you're using the concept of objectivity in your arguments. Please ignore what I said if it isn't the case.)
lozerfac3
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Hello, I'm back. Seems like you guys have been having a very interesting discussion about morality. I'm gonna bring it back to the main topic, but I think it's still important to understand where everyone stands in regards to morality so please continue.

@thebluerabbit

im not talking about a scenario where god would have done differently. im talking about a person who believes in a god with an identical character to yours but not in your religion.

I understand your question now. I'll be more careful to answer things directly. If someone believes in a god with and identical character to my God, then I believe that they believe in the same God as me. I think that it depends on how you worship God. You might believe in the same God, but are you living as our God wants you to live? The Bible is essential to knowing how to worship God and Christians hopefully closely follow the Bible, so Christianity is the way to go.

which means there were people who had no chance to ever know about god. which means they could never believe in him.

Yes. God chooses who to reveal Himself to and subsequently who to save. The faith was mostly exclusive to Israelites before Jesus, so this is consistent of God's character.

a father doesnt burn you in hell for all eternity. your god isnt just tell me something for my benefit, he tells me "do this or burn in hell". people are backed into a corner.
and the whole "free will" part is hypocritical when it comes to that.
"you can choose freely, but i will harm you if you choose something i tell you not to."

its also in my best interest to obey the person whos threatening me with the gun just as much.

Eh that's true. Good point. The Bible includes the law, so it does tell you that you must do things. It does say you will experience God's wrath for those who break the law. But it also talks about how to be judged apart from the law: by receiving Christ. It also talks about how to worship God because the Bible isn't all about guidelines. My earlier point still stands that it doesn't tell us who to love, but how to love. I mean it does tell us who to love. Jesus tells us to love everyone.

its wrong because one should be judged on their morals, not their religion. you shouldnt get better treatment for happening to believe in the right god, while a person who is a much better person than you will suffer.

its wrong because it takes away your responsibility when doing something bad just because you are religious. its obviously wrong.

It still seems wrong that someone who lives a better life but doesn't believe in God should go to hell over someone like a criminal who accepts Christ right before they die. But the reality (according to the Bible) is that "No one is righteous". Everyone has been stained by one sin in their life and more importantly, everyone rejects God. Rejecting God is the worst sin and the sin from which all other sins come from. So they only way the first person could go to heaven is to accept Christ as well.

Don't get me wrong. Just because we are justified by Christ doesn't mean we don't still have to abide by the law; we do. It just means that we aren't going to be judged according to the law. If I understand the Scriptures correctly (as some Christians might disagree), then we are still called to "work out our salvation". We still have the responsibility of carrying out God's word because that's where our salvation comes from. Paul retorts, "How can we who died to sin still live in it?" So we must kill sin in our lives daily.

the point isnt calling it science. the point is showing that its flawed.

But you're saying it's flawed because it's not like science. It's not about disproving or proving God's existence through external experiences. It is very much faith. You trust that the Bible is true and then you make deductions based off that.

actually, since the bible isnt the word of god, studying it and believing in it leads away from him and makes you susceptible to being brainwashed by figures of authority in that religion.

as said before, if you just plainly make such claims, i will just contradict them. when you refuse to be critical and just drill those assumptions as arguments, you arent making points anymore.

Am I not being critical? Don't you think I have thought about all these criticisms? Why do you think I even have answers for these criticisms? After all these years, the Bible being the living word of God makes the most sense to me. This is the only assumption I have made, that the Bible is true. We are not arguing about the truth of the Bible. We are arguing about how the Bible makes sense logically. Or at least that's what I care about in this discussion.

so? do i need to give you examples of what awful things some people used christian teachings to justify. slavery was an example. you cant just give me examples of people who used christians as a motive to do something good and ignore the opposite.

Fair enough. But the way you phrased it made it seem like the Bible teaches against each and every worldly moral which is definitely not the case. For example, it teaches against murder and theft just like the world does. I'm just claiming that if you read the Bible, rather than following religions or people in power, you will get a clear understanding of godly wisdom. It's easy to follow religion even as a Christian, but the Bible is available for us to test the teachings of religious teachers.

also, religion should never be the reason to do something good. if religion is the reason a person is good, that person isnt really good. you should do good because it is good.

I could just as easily say that you should follow God because God is good. I suggest we drop this argument.

because you actively say some people are better than others based on religion, sex, sexuality etc. and therefore also treat them differently.

That makes sense, but it doesn't mean that I'm abolishing basic human rights. Also, the Bible teaches against treating other people differently based on religion. We are only called to judge other Christians who are supposed to share the same moral compass as us. I mean we can still call out people who are doing major injustices to other people (e.g. murder, racism, abuse), but generally we are supposed to let unbelievers believe whatever they want.

people did some awful things in the name of your religion, and you desperately need to find an excuse instead of acknowledging that yeah, maybe your religion actually isnt true, good and perfect.

It's not my religion if I don't vouch for it. It might be the same texts, but it's a completely different belief.

also, christians dont have a stronger connection to their religion today. christianity is practically the most revised and changed religion out of the three abrahamic ones. a 100 years from now, if gay marriage will be widely accepted by christianity, someone like you will just say that the people who rejected it today were wrong and didnt understand the word correctly.

I didn't say we have a stronger connection to our religion. I said we have a stronger connection to the Scriptures.

saying the bad people who shared your religion just misunderstood your religion is taking the easy way out. one should accept both the good and the bad that their religion has caused, without resorting to the "no true scotsman" fallacy.

I feel like bringing up the "No True Scotsman" fallacy is lame in these types of debates. They ain't even following the same religion as me. Plus, we haven't even gotten to the heart of what true Christianity is yet.

also, your claim that everybody has a different perception of what is perfection is also a little bit flawed. perfection is a very easy concept to understand, even if it is difficult to imagine.

perfect is whole, has all good aspects, lacks no good aspects, possess no bad aspects, is one etc. etc.

If that's everyone's definition of perfection, then we still have to define what good and bad means. It's still subjective.

the fact that you can throw away responsibility over the things you do. while other people who are better people than you will still suffer.

if you dont understand why thats just wrong, i dont know how to be clearer.

Again, no one is better than anyone in God's eyes. And again, we don't throw away any responsibility to do good. It's just that we don't have to worry about going to hell. That's a great and beautiful thing.

that doesnt matter. one could say the same thing regarding anything. i am better because im rich. and its not because im better, but because i deserve being rich. i mean, i am rich and you are poor. there must a reason for that. i got the good life while you got the bad life for reason that surpass us.

it is very self centered, and using religion as a medium to also claim you are humble only makes it worse.

christians are not better than anyone else. and i know many people who are atheists who are better than many christians.

Maybe we are using the term "better" too loosely. I agree that Christians are no better than anyone else. I know Christians who are worse than atheists too. But when I say better, I mean we have moved past the morals of the world in favor of godly, heavenly morals. Yet, we are still imperfect in this world and everyone has different levels of maturity, so some Christians (if they even truly have Christ) might still appear morally wrong in many cases.

And you're right to say that we are not inherently more humble because of this fact. The Bible has to tell us that we should regard ourselves as below others and that we should respect everyone as human beings. We can't claim that we are humble unless we put it into practice.

im not taking them out of context, im telling you what the consequences are for them, and you dont like them. if logic is the farthest limit of our conception, and logic is below god, meaning we cant reach his religion with logic alone, then following that logic and not believing shouldnt be a sin.

But I wasn't talking about believing or salvation. I was talking about being logical about the different things it says in the Bible and being logical and critical about others' teachings about the Bible. So yes, you were taking it out of context.

But, your logic is right. Not believing is not a sin. Rejecting God is a sin. Anyone can believe in the God of the Bible. Even demons believe in God. But their rejection of Him is the sin.

of course to believe in the true nature of god. i hope one day you can see the truth, reject your misguided ways and have faith in the true god. then you will be saved from god, because he is good and loves you, you can do it.

I honestly can't tell if you're mocking me. I don't mean to assume, so I'll ask. Are you? lol

no. when you choose which views to challenge, you arent challenging your views. when you challenge your views because those views contradict your religion, its like a smoker saying he has a strong willpower because his will to smoke is greater than his will to not smoke.

Hm I would say you have the analogy backwards. But it's just a difference of perspective. In fact, it probably doesn't accurately represent what's really going on regardless of whose perspective you look from. I would say that there are at least two things competing. Not my views and my religion's views, but rather the world's views and religious views in general. In my case, it would be my religion's views. So for me, the world's views and my religion's views are constantly competing in my head. Because I am of the world, I am naturally inclined to the world's views. But now that I am in Christ and "I have the mind of Christ", I can be more inclined to my religion's views. Some Christians are able to tell when this shift in views happened in their life, but it's hard for me. Like I said, it's a constant competition, so in some moments, I might even take on worldly views.

if you cant doubt your own religion and refuse to do so, you are not challenging your views.

the point here is to question everything, not just the things you have to challenge in order to always hold that one single belief you wont ever question.

Once you challenge a belief for long enough and it continues to prove itself, you're really going to be wasting your time if you continue to challenge it. We don't have to question gravity each time we let something go from out hands. We trust that it will drop.

i suppose so, though the deity part is also problematic.
if the deity itself literally could not be different, is the manifestation of morality and identical to it, could not change morality on a whim etc. etc. then yes.

if the deity is just a person who is the most powerful, it is still subjective.

Both descriptions fit God, so morality would be objective.

@HahiHa

Assuming is all I can do, though I don't assume to know; I am merely saying it makes absolutely no sense to me. And aren't you, too, assuming when you say that "God doesn't work purely through supernatural means. News spreads through mediums like speech, letters, text, websites, etc. so God will use those things to spread the gospel."? I guess this is just one of those bits where everyone shrugs and says "God's ways are not our ways".

True. You're right, I am assuming. I mean we can only assume because there is no explicit reason why in the Bible, but there are clues. In Paul's first letter to the church in Corinth, he says that he and his coworkers laid down the foundation of that church. He says that although they planted and watered it, God gives the growth in the people of the church. While God receives the credit for building people up, Paul and his coworkers "each will receive his wages according to his labor" (3:8). So I think one reason why God sends people to spread the Word, is so that they may partake in the glory of his work and be paid for it. How they will be paid, I'm not sure, but I think it can also be answered in the Bible if I dig deep.

I don't know why, but I find that statement strangely disquieting. First word that came to my mind when reading this was 'apathy'.

What I mean is, we don't have to do work for our salvation. We do have to do work as long as we are on this Earth. Also, I'm not sure if that's the reasoning.

I think it is also a somewhat twisted reasoning (from my atheist point of view; maybe I'd judge it differently if I was a believer to begin with): you're saying it's OK to accept that you are fundamentally evil only for the benefit/relief of divine intervention? I may be caricaturing a bit, but it's essentially how it comes across. I've definitely heard better motivational messages

Yeah, it's not really a motivational message for going out and being good unless you take the Bible as truth and as a whole. The motivating factor might be knowing that we have a new life in Christ, but the real motivating agent is the Holy Spirit.

And I'm not saying that's the only reason why someone would believe that they're fundamentally evil. I'm just saying that's one of the reasons why I personally have no problem with it. Another good reason why would be because the Bible says so. You would have to believe the Bible first though of course like you said. Another reason might be because you see destructive or selfish patterns in your life, or in everyone else's lives that confirm this belief.

@thebluerabbit

nope, i have voiced similar worries. i agree with you, even as a religious person. apathy is a very good and accurate to describe how this feels. and frankly, this is what i usually feel when religious people have non religious friends and are somehow totally fine with themselves believing those friends going to hell.

I mean what can you do if you believe that the Bible is truth? It's a sad reality for Christians. It causes major grief to Christians who have family members who never came to the faith before they died. It's not about what seems right, but what is right.

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Sorry if I came across a bit haughty in that last bit, but basically I'm asking you to demonstrate to me how morality is objective. Several times you've tried to assert that morality was like math and whatnot, without actually supporting that claim. A mathematical problem has a correct, demonstrable answer. If morals were like math, moral problem would also have demonstrable, correct answers. So the true, objective morality you speak of should be deducible. Support that(/your) argument convincingly, and I might change my mind.

yes, this is exactly what im saying. i already also showed a probably way a moral problem is solved. i cant give you a formula that will solve every single problem you want. it is possible and probable that we just havnt refined the tools that point out to the solutions well enough yet.

im saying it is like math, because math is also objective, not physical, abstract, and cant be proved by science.

the very first reason i am claiming morality is objective is because of what it means if it isnt. if it isnt objective, all arguments on it are nothing but arguments on art/taste.

it seems very counter intuitive and also very wrong to think that this is the case, when there are cases of morality where it takes not second thought to see if something is right or wrong (Again, provided we know all the details).

this is also very similar to math. there are simple problems that a child can solve, and there are difficult problems that even people whos entire life is math have difficulty solving, and actually, problems that still havnt been solved.

its true that perhaps this is the best i can do to defend this position, but if you believe it is subjective, you are contradicting yourself every time you are willing to say someone is right or wrong in a sense that actually means something more than "i dont like chocolate".

also, why would you believe morality is subjective but be fine with math being called objective? math as objective suffers from the very same points you are making.
is it because math is more practical? we used it so much and gained so much from it that it feels more probable to you that its objective?
just because it is practical doesnt make it more real. and at times, mathematical rules and facts are counter intuitive, or at the very least are things you have to memorize and just get used to as facts, giving up on understanding why it acts the way it acts.

math is a logical system that gets you from one tautology to another. in its purest form, it actually says nothing about the practical world, only its theoretical aspect.
i see morality as very similar. and i cant give up on the idea that something as simple as "i killed him cause i felt like" is wrong inherently in a sense that is stronger than just my personal opinion.

Then we're both in it, because not only were you the one who started to criticize me for being a moral relativist, you then constantly claimed that what I think morality is is not what it actually is (i.e., what you think it is). I've simply argued against (as one would do in an argument) because I disagree on your concept of morality.

ive argued against you by showing the consequences of your view and the flaws in it. its a valid criticism. but if your main point is that morality is just not what i think it is, youre just contradicting me. most of your arguments were just telling me im wrong and describing how it actually is. with the smaller more valid arguments trying to explain why i may think that way and that im confusing my opinions with facts.

So, basically you're saying that your claim that morality is objective is a subjective premise that you just accept and that cannot be proven or contradicted by scientific methods?
... You could have just said "Oh, you're a relativist? Well, I disagree", instead of telling me that my definition of morality is wrong :/

no, what im saying is that the basis for morality is almost if not identical to the basis of math. if you want to go as deep as possible and doubt every single axiom and assumption since they are subjective, then every single thing is subjective except the claim that "i myself exist in some form or way".

my point is that the things you say to criticize morality as objective, can be said about many other things, things that you probably see as objective yourself, like math.
im not just telling you your definition is wrong, im telling you why i think it is wrong, and the flaws of having your view.

Hang on. Moral absolutism claims that acts are intrinsically right or wrong. If you say that morality is absolute, then it can't be complex; it is always right or wrong independent of situation. Moral universalism on the other hand, would allow for that complexity while still being opposed to relativism. So the question is, based on your claims, do I have to assume you are a non-absolutist universalist?

ill describe first how i feel and what i think before choosing a label.

you said that if its absolute, it cant be complex, cause it will always be right or wrong. thats wrong (at least in my view). being complex doesnt mean there are other answers. being complex means that reaching the answer is complicated.
a math problem can be terribly complex, but it will still have an absolute result.

morality being absolute, means that there is an answer to every problem, but it doesnt mean that its simple and easy to get there. you have to take into consideration many many details that could possibly be relevant to the calculation to reach the answer.

you cant just say that 0*3*1*5...=0 because you just ignored the rest of the calculations. there might be something in there that causes the answer to be something totally different.

so when someone kills someone, you cant just immediately say "bad" because you need to take everything into consideration. morality being absolute doesnt mean that a person who killed someone in self defense is bad because he killed someone.

now ill read those links and tell you what label ill choose. so you, after 2 seconds of reading, i can definitely say that im not an absolutist.

when i used that word before, i meant it in a more day to day way, and not the label. i said "absolute" in the sense that there is always an objective answer. i do believe though that there are many elements that have to be taken into consideration to judge someone and an action, for example, motive.

i am willing to say that yes, i am a universalist, but there could be cases where for example, race should be taken into consideration. for example, if a jew (ill see it as race as this is how it is seen in many cases and in the next one), have done something that youd generally judge as bad, during the holocaust, perhaps the judgement would be different.

so your assumption is mostly accurate. though i think following these labels, while being very helpful in some cases, could be a bit problematic at times. because sometimes people hold views that are more complex than the labels, and their opponents would try to criticize the simple label instead of the view itself.

Now you're misunderstanding me. At no point have I ever said that logic was not inherent to our world. What I said, is that just because an argument is formally logical, doesn't mean its conclusion must necessarily be factual. Trying to bring this back to the initial point, while moral values aren't always very rational (particularly the more culturally related ones), we both agree that certain moral values (like those about theft and murder) can be argued for logically. I used that argument against your claim that relativism would only lead to pure fancy. But I'm also arguing that just because it can be argued for in a logically formal way, doesn't mean it is necessarily universally true, which ties back to the quote above.

well, thats interesting. can you give me an example of a logical argument that reaches a false conclusion (of course, assuming all relevant aspects of the argument have been taken into consideration).

also, if i havnt been clear, the universal good im talking about doesnt have cultural influences. for example, eating bacon isnt bad, regardless of what judaism might tell you. eating bacon isnt good either. its just not a moral problem in the first place.

the morality im talking about, is one that is based on logic.

- Being objective means avoiding personal biases and perception. Basing something off of your own intuition is not objective, as it is exclusively concerned with your subjective perspective.
- Whether you have blind faith or accept you may be wrong, we're still talking about faith in a supernatural entity. You're delusional if you think allowing for a certain uncertainty somehow makes your faith on par with the scientific method. (If that really is what you're thinking; I assume it is based on the way you're using the concept of objectivity in your arguments. Please ignore what I said if it isn't the case.)

this brings me back to what i said about everything being subjective except that one claim i mentioned. the scientific method is also subjective if you are willing to go far enough, because at the very end, everything we perceive goes through our screen of perception.

if you compare one screen of perception and logic, to countless of such screens, a narrative, interpretation, editing, translations etc. i would say that yes, the former is closer to being objective.

i never called my faith scientific. i am the first who will look for a scientific explanation before explaining something with faith. but my faith is a result of philosophical thinking, logic, studies (not religious studies, metaphysical studies) etc.

it is closer to the scientific method than religion in its general sense. in the end, metaphysics isnt physics. it is pure logic, assumptions etc. it can use worldly facts to support itself, or explain why the world is different from what we generally think, but it cant use empirical data to prove itself.
that is something that accurate and hard science has that metaphysics (and also math) dont have. and that is fine. i accept that, and i take such facts into consideration before i start delving into fantastical metaphysical theories.

I understand your question now. I'll be more careful to answer things directly. If someone believes in a god with and identical character to my God, then I believe that they believe in the same God as me. I think that it depends on how you worship God. You might believe in the same God, but are you living as our God wants you to live? The Bible is essential to knowing how to worship God and Christians hopefully closely follow the Bible, so Christianity is the way to go.

if thats the case, the gods character is irrelevant, or at the very least, doesnt matter as much. you again, put more emphasis on a person being christian, despite the fact not everybody could have been or can be christians because of where they happen to live.

Yes. God chooses who to reveal Himself to and subsequently who to save. The faith was mostly exclusive to Israelites before Jesus, so this is consistent of God's character.

so whether you are saved or not doesnt even depend on you. its whatever god felt like when he created you. dooming people to hell from the very moment they were born doesnt sound very right to me. sounds more sadistic actually.

Eh that's true. Good point. The Bible includes the law, so it does tell you that you must do things. It does say you will experience God's wrath for those who break the law. But it also talks about how to be judged apart from the law: by receiving Christ. It also talks about how to worship God because the Bible isn't all about guidelines. My earlier point still stands that it doesn't tell us who to love, but how to love. I mean it does tell us who to love. Jesus tells us to love everyone.

so its exactly as ive said. "you have a choice. do as i say or suffer". and it definitely says who to love. when your love isnt accepted because of something, its the same as saying who you can and cant love. it sounds like the bible is just another threatening gun. all the more positive interpretations of "god loves you" "its not who, its how to love" "its for your own good" are just sugar coating a much more terrible truth: "be obedient or suffer forever".

It still seems wrong that someone who lives a better life but doesn't believe in God should go to hell over someone like a criminal who accepts Christ right before they die. But the reality (according to the Bible) is that "No one is righteous". Everyone has been stained by one sin in their life and more importantly, everyone rejects God. Rejecting God is the worst sin and the sin from which all other sins come from. So they only way the first person could go to heaven is to accept Christ as well.

so it practically means it doesnt matter how good of a person you are. all that matters is that you join our ranks in christianity. you could be the nicest, most moral, most self sacrificing person in the world, but oh, if you were born in some unheard of tribe and arent christian, you are still actually evil.
honestly, thats just terrible.

Don't get me wrong. Just because we are justified by Christ doesn't mean we don't still have to abide by the law; we do. It just means that we aren't going to be judged according to the law. If I understand the Scriptures correctly (as some Christians might disagree), then we are still called to "work out our salvation". We still have the responsibility of carrying out God's word because that's where our salvation comes from. Paul retorts, "How can we who died to sin still live in it?" So we must kill sin in our lives daily.

sorry but thats just a joke. if you arent going to be judged according to the law, you might as well just not follow it. as long as you possess this nice christianity card, you are safe. if you arent judged according to the law, its the same as saying you are above the law. and such a self centered way of viewing yourself is one of the many problems people have with religious people. the fact one would put so much emphasis on religion instead of actually being a good person is shameful.

But you're saying it's flawed because it's not like science. It's not about disproving or proving God's existence through external experiences. It is very much faith. You trust that the Bible is true and then you make deductions based off that.

its not flawed because its not like science, its flawed because it blinds you and encourages you to stop thinking. it creates a bubble around you of what you can and musnt take into consideration, and you better not doubt the very thing you arent supposed to doubt.

telling you there is something you must not doubt, is a huge flaw by itself. and following something that tells you that, puts you in an intellectual disadvantage. imo, if a religion actually believed that its message is true, it wouldnt have a problem with doubt. in fact, it would encourage doubt, because doubt leads to critical thinking, and if done right, it would lead straight back to the religion if it is true.

if the religion discourages you from using the most basic tool of thought that god gave you, i have doubt whether the religion actually has an ulterior motive. sounds more like an entitled parent who claims the child is misbehaving or disrespecting them by showing valid points in an argument.

Am I not being critical? Don't you think I have thought about all these criticisms? Why do you think I even have answers for these criticisms? After all these years, the Bible being the living word of God makes the most sense to me. This is the only assumption I have made, that the Bible is true. We are not arguing about the truth of the Bible. We are arguing about how the Bible makes sense logically. Or at least that's what I care about in this discussion.

no, you are not being critical exactly because of the last part of this paragraph you just wrote. you arent willing to doubt. you are just looking for counters to some criticisms. if you couldnt find any, it wouldnt make you doubt your own religion. youd just call it a day and move on. you arent criticizing your own belief system, you are only looking for ways to support it. being critical means that you are ready to abandon an old view of yours if it is met with valid points you cant answer. you are just defending your point, already knowing you will never change your faith.

Fair enough. But the way you phrased it made it seem like the Bible teaches against each and every worldly moral which is definitely not the case. For example, it teaches against murder and theft just like the world does. I'm just claiming that if you read the Bible, rather than following religions or people in power, you will get a clear understanding of godly wisdom. It's easy to follow religion even as a Christian, but the Bible is available for us to test the teachings of religious teachers.

the bible by now is more morally dangerous than the religion. the typical religion has went through changes to suit modern times. and it definitely does not teaches against murder and theft the same way the world does. it has some very strange and deranged ideas about what is justifiable, for what reasons etc.

I could just as easily say that you should follow God because God is good. I suggest we drop this argument.

that wasnt what was said originally though. even if god is good, doing as he says because he is good, and not because what he says is good, is very different. one should do good for the good itself. not because he is expected to do so by a good entity. especially when that entity just so happens to be powerful and threaten you with eternal hell if you disobey.

That makes sense, but it doesn't mean that I'm abolishing basic human rights. Also, the Bible teaches against treating other people differently based on religion. We are only called to judge other Christians who are supposed to share the same moral compass as us. I mean we can still call out people who are doing major injustices to other people (e.g. murder, racism, abuse), but generally we are supposed to let unbelievers believe whatever they want.

when you tell people they cant love, you are going against their rights. and when you see yourself as better than others because you are christian (Regardless of the excuse or interpretation that makes you think its justified), you are already treating them differently from other christians.

and this also goes back to "apathy". christianity encourages conversion in order to save people. but you also say it lets people believe what they believe in.

"i told you to convert, you dont wanna, fine, burn in hell. i did my part" is not "letting" people believe what they believe in. your religion actively threatens the life and safety of every non believer. just because you arent actively doing it doesnt mean your religion isnt. you are taking the easy way out by having this view.

a true religion that lets people believe in their beliefs, wont put an emphasis on religion. a religion that doesnt claim there is a punishment for people who dont follow the religion is truly a benign religion that lets people believe what they do. yours doesnt. it just doesnt forcefully convert (today, and even then, its arguable) people, but instead threatens and leaves them to burn in hell when they dont listen.

It's not my religion if I don't vouch for it. It might be the same texts, but it's a completely different belief.

its not different. a different sector? maybe. but it is the same religion, whether you want to accept it or not.

I didn't say we have a stronger connection to our religion. I said we have a stronger connection to the Scriptures.

my point still stands. christianity is probably the religion that was the most mellowed throughout the years. also, literally a huge part of christianity is to ignore some parts of the old testament. the fact bacon is fine in christianity already shows distance between the religion and the scriptures (and again, an explanation of "when jesus came back, things changed" is not going to cut it).

christianity has many sectors, just like other religions, and it is far from following the scriptures literally, and filled with cherry picking.

I feel like bringing up the "No True Scotsman" fallacy is lame in these types of debates. They ain't even following the same religion as me. Plus, we haven't even gotten to the heart of what true Christianity is yet.

it feels lame because it is exactly what you are doing. it IS your religion, even if you feel they are different from you. they are christians. and i already said what it is to be christian.
it is to believe in jesus.

you might want to complicate it by adding values, tendencies and more specific approaches, but thats you defining christianity all over. a person who believes in the new testament and jesus as god/son of god/whatever you wanna call it is christian.
its not deeper than that.

If that's everyone's definition of perfection, then we still have to define what good and bad means. It's still subjective.

no. lack of definition of good might make the term more vague, but it doesnt make perfection subjective. if good is subjective, then it would make perfection subjective. but i claim it isnt. you do too. and its starting to sound to me as if you wouldnt be able to tell good from bad if it wasnt for religion, which is concerning.

if you also believe in an objective good and bad, and you believe we are able to perceive it without religion, you shouldnt have a problem with that statement.

Again, no one is better than anyone in God's eyes. And again, we don't throw away any responsibility to do good. It's just that we don't have to worry about going to hell. That's a great and beautiful thing.

if some people are chosen to know about him, while others had never had a chance and go to hell, god definitely shows favoritism and prefers people over others. and if nobody is better, he wouldnt give christians this ultimate card to not burn in hell. and not having to worry about consequences for being a bad person is definitely not a great and beautiful thing. it is self centered and selfish. the assumption you can be excused for anything if you are christian is awful. and the idea that even if you do, you still try to do good and be good doesnt make it better.

Maybe we are using the term "better" too loosely. I agree that Christians are no better than anyone else. I know Christians who are worse than atheists too. But when I say better, I mean we have moved past the morals of the world in favor of godly, heavenly morals. Yet, we are still imperfect in this world and everyone has different levels of maturity, so some Christians (if they even truly have Christ) might still appear morally wrong in many cases.

when you say you have better morals, you say you are better people. it only makes it sound worse when you are saying people might seem worse but that is because of a level of maturity. and if the morals of the world are so much worse and different from the godly morals, maybe god should have done a better job in creating this world.

expecting people to be christian is one thing. expecting people to be good, and then creating a world where "good" is different from what he meant is just plain sadistic. its as if we are an entertainment show by now.

And you're right to say that we are not inherently more humble because of this fact. The Bible has to tell us that we should regard ourselves as below others and that we should respect everyone as human beings. We can't claim that we are humble unless we put it into practice.

you literally cant claim you are humble because you see yourself as possessing better (or the correct) morals. if religious people were humble, they wouldnt try to present their beliefs as the truth.

But I wasn't talking about believing or salvation. I was talking about being logical about the different things it says in the Bible and being logical and critical about others' teachings about the Bible. So yes, you were taking it out of context.

it doesnt matter if you were talking about believing or not. you made a claim about logic, and im telling you one of the consequences of that claim leads to something you dont like about belief and salvation. thats not taking what you say out of context, its showing you where you claims lead to.

But, your logic is right. Not believing is not a sin. Rejecting God is a sin. Anyone can believe in the God of the Bible. Even demons believe in God. But their rejection of Him is the sin.

then what is rejection? how can you not believe and reject? if rejection is to believe and still not follow, then non christians shouldnt be punished.

I honestly can't tell if you're mocking me. I don't mean to assume, so I'll ask. Are you? lol

yes i am slightly. sometimes, it is better to take a similar stance to your opponent but a stance that also contradicts them to show just how destructive it is to a discussion. me and many people discuss this topic with you with a fair stance. if you could show us why your religion is good/your god is good, counter our points etc. hell, we might even convert. we are coming to you with the acceptance that we dont hold that one single truth and are willing to give you the benefit of the doubt, suspend our own beliefs, and doubt ourselves.

you arent willing to act like this. you wont doubt your religion, give us the benefit of the doubt that we might be right, or accept that if you are convinced (in a fair case, not the impossible case like before) you might actually change your beliefs.

this "mocking" is used in order to show you just how simple and unfruitful this conversation would be with people who have a different stance to you but with a similar approach.

Hm I would say you have the analogy backwards. But it's just a difference of perspective. In fact, it probably doesn't accurately represent what's really going on regardless of whose perspective you look from. I would say that there are at least two things competing. Not my views and my religion's views, but rather the world's views and religious views in general. In my case, it would be my religion's views. So for me, the world's views and my religion's views are constantly competing in my head. Because I am of the world, I am naturally inclined to the world's views. But now that I am in Christ and "I have the mind of Christ", I can be more inclined to my religion's views. Some Christians are able to tell when this shift in views happened in their life, but it's hard for me. Like I said, it's a constant competition, so in some moments, I might even take on worldly views.

there is nothing wrong with some of your view contradicting each other. my point is, that when you choose to only doubt some of those views, without giving the others a second thought, you arent being critical, and you arent actually challenging your own views. you are just sacrificing views you feel are less important for others. it is fine on some level, but when you are willing to sacrifice whatever it takes to hold certain views, not willing to doubt them regardless of what might contradict them, you arent challenging your views anymore.

Once you challenge a belief for long enough and it continues to prove itself, you're really going to be wasting your time if you continue to challenge it. We don't have to question gravity each time we let something go from out hands. We trust that it will drop.

we do have to question gravity though when we let something go and it goes up. we always refine our views when they are challenged. you dont have to challenge your view all the time, but when you face criticism and points and you already decided that you will never question your religion, its very different.
what you are doing is letting go of something, seeing it float in midair, spinning around your head, and then shooting up towards the sun, and not willing to accept that gravity might act differently from the way you thought it acted, because you just must not question it.

Both descriptions fit God, so morality would be objective.

ummm no? if both descriptions fit and are contradicting each other, he would either be both (which would also be a contradiction), or neither. did you just pick objective cause you prefer it?

Yeah, it's not really a motivational message for going out and being good unless you take the Bible as truth and as a whole. The motivating factor might be knowing that we have a new life in Christ, but the real motivating agent is the Holy Spirit.

isnt that kind of awful? shouldnt the motivation be to just be good in itself? if you are telling someone that being good is irrelevant and pointless unless they are christian, and they arent christian, you are practically telling them that they might as well be awful selfish since they are going to hell anyway.

And I'm not saying that's the only reason why someone would believe that they're fundamentally evil. I'm just saying that's one of the reasons why I personally have no problem with it. Another good reason why would be because the Bible says so. You would have to believe the Bible first though of course like you said. Another reason might be because you see destructive or selfish patterns in your life, or in everyone else's lives that confirm this belief.

dude, just no. "the bible says so" is definitely NOT a good reason, even if you are a believer. a good reason is at the very least, a rational reason. and you could also see the opposite patterns. does that mean its valid to believe we are fundamentally good?

I mean what can you do if you believe that the Bible is truth? It's a sad reality for Christians. It causes major grief to Christians who have family members who never came to the faith before they died. It's not about what seems right, but what is right.

dont present christians as the victims, especially when the culprit would be the christian god. also, i dont see christians wailing and wheeping every day for their non christian friends. seriously, if this was the case, christians would be way more into converting than they already are. there is absolutely no reason it has to be like that, except for the very bad argument of "cause the bible says so". if you have faith in something that supposedly causes you that much pain, you need therapy and to ask yourself if the god you are following is actually good.

you actually think that sending people to hell for all eternity is the right thing to do? im sorry, but if you really do, then despite how much grieve you claim to be feeling, you are evil. sending innocent and good people to such a place because of where they happened to be born is just plain evil.

lozerfac3
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All I’m saying is that this is what the Bible is teaching. You can choose to believe the Bible or not. My goal is to accurately describe Christians according to the Bible, not according to the world. So it’s not possible to apply the “No True Scotsman” fallacy yet.

what you are doing is letting go of something, seeing it float in midair, spinning around your head, and then shooting up towards the sun, and not willing to accept that gravity might act differently from the way you thought it acted, because you just must not question it.

In this analogy, God is gravity. If something happens that contradicts my view about gravity, then gravity acts differently so I have to adjust. If something happens that contradicts my view about God, I would have to adjust my views about God. Doesn’t mean I have to reject God or gravity. Like I’m not gonna say oh bubbles float so gravity doesn’t exist.

yes i am slightly. sometimes, it is better to take a similar stance to your opponent but a stance that also contradicts them to show just how destructive it is to a discussion. me and many people discuss this topic with you with a fair stance. if you could show us why your religion is good/your god is good, counter our points etc. hell, we might even convert. we are coming to you with the acceptance that we dont hold that one single truth and are willing to give you the benefit of the doubt, suspend our own beliefs, and doubt ourselves.

you arent willing to act like this. you wont doubt your religion, give us the benefit of the doubt that we might be right, or accept that if you are convinced (in a fair case, not the impossible case like before) you might actually change your beliefs.

this "mocking" is used in order to show you just how simple and unfruitful this conversation would be with people who have a different stance to you but with a similar approach.

See. This is what I mean when I say that you are wrongly outright judging me based on the religion I claim. Not once have I acted that way towards you. I’m just filling you guys in on my interpretation of the Bible. If you believe it’s wrong based on your morals, then what can I do about it? That’s not my goal in this conversation.

This isn’t supposed to be a debate about whether it’s true or not. I can do that on my own time or we can do that on a different thread. Of course, I gotta criticize every view, but how can I criticize a view if it’s not even defined properly. Let us define what Christianity according to the Bible is first at least if you wanna get into that here.

lozerfac3
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Oh I just wanted to add,

well, thats interesting. can you give me an example of a logical argument that reaches a false conclusion (of course, assuming all relevant aspects of the argument have been taken into consideration).

A logical argument can reach a false conclusion if one of its premises are false.

HahiHa
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True. You're right, I am assuming. I mean we can only assume because there is no explicit reason why in the Bible, but there are clues. In Paul's first letter to the church in Corinth, he says that he and his coworkers laid down the foundation of that church. He says that although they planted and watered it, God gives the growth in the people of the church. While God receives the credit for building people up, Paul and his coworkers "each will receive his wages according to his labor" (3:8). So I think one reason why God sends people to spread the Word, is so that they may partake in the glory of his work and be paid for it. How they will be paid, I'm not sure, but I think it can also be answered in the Bible if I dig deep.

I can understand this, that God would also work through the acts of people. But you have to keep in mind that at least at first, and for a long time, those believers had no idea of the existence of so many other "godless" people around the world; therefore they couldn't be expected to go and preach the word of God to those people. God could have revealed Himself to those people then and there, yet He apparently did nothing of the sort and waited for conquest and colonisation to spread the word in a highly questionable way.

Another reason might be because you see destructive or selfish patterns in your life, or in everyone else's lives that confirm this belief.

I see that, but I also see constructive, kind and altruistic patterns. My experience of life so far has also shown me that those patterns are not really different in believers and non-believers. Not that I'd expect believers to be perfect; but it seems that those who were already kind, hold kind beliefs and interpretations, while those who were already destructive, use those beliefs to sow more dissension. So no, we're not perfect. But my experience departs form the teachings of the Bible in at least those two ways: we're not born evil, and religion doesn't appear to fundamentally change people.

But the reality (according to the Bible) is that "No one is righteous". Everyone has been stained by one sin in their life and more importantly, everyone rejects God. Rejecting God is the worst sin and the sin from which all other sins come from. So they only way the first person could go to heaven is to accept Christ as well.

But, your logic is right. Not believing is not a sin. Rejecting God is a sin. Anyone can believe in the God of the Bible. Even demons believe in God. But their rejection of Him is the sin.

This might be the reason why you started your OP with the assumptions already pointed out early on ^^
"Everyone rejects God"; is that why you assume all who do not believe must be rejecting God for some reason or other? But how can one reject something one does believe exists? As you said, demons would be evil for rejecting God, despite obviously believing in His existence. But someone who does not believe in the existence of God cannot reject Him, cannot commit that ultimate sin; so on what basis would a non-believer be de facto sent to Hell?

edit:
yes, this is exactly what im saying. i already also showed a probably way a moral problem is solved. i cant give you a formula that will solve every single problem you want. it is possible and probable that we just havnt refined the tools that point out to the solutions well enough yet.

Or maybe those tools don't exist. 1+1=2 is a mathematical equation that is true independent of any individual subjectivity. It includes operations like the addition that is always the same because that's how it is defined. But when you say "killing is wrong", what do you mean by killing? Who/what is killed, by whom, how, in what situation and for what reason/purpose? How do you define wrong, wrong for whom, wrong in what way? What are the consequences etc. All those things depend on the individual subjectivity, on the moral values of the people who judge the situation. Moral problems are judged by people, not solved.

the very first reason i am claiming morality is objective is because of what it means if it isnt. if it isnt objective, all arguments on it are nothing but arguments on art/taste.

1) That would mean you're defining morality by what you don't want it to be. That would be fine, of course. I just don't consider that a rational approach.

2) Taste and moral value are not the same thing. They're both subjective, yes, but it would be incorrectly generalizing the issue to say that puts them on the same level. Taste are purely personal opinions, things that concern you alone. Moral values are what you think is right and wrong, not just for you but for everyone. Moral values concern not just you, but society at large.

it seems very counter intuitive and also very wrong to think that this is the case, when there are cases of morality where it takes not second thought to see if something is right or wrong (Again, provided we know all the details).

That doesn't mean anything. We are all humans, we're all social animals and think the same in many ways. It is normal that killing is almost instinctively considered wrong; it doesn't mean that it's universal in any way.

math is a logical system that gets you from one tautology to another. in its purest form, it actually says nothing about the practical world, only its theoretical aspect.
i see morality as very similar. and i cant give up on the idea that something as simple as "i killed him cause i felt like" is wrong inherently in a sense that is stronger than just my personal opinion.

That's your opinion, and that's OK. I disagree, for the reasons mentioned; I also think that it is not comparable to mathematics at all. But that's just my opinion.

you said that if its absolute, it cant be complex, cause it will always be right or wrong. thats wrong (at least in my view). being complex doesnt mean there are other answers. being complex means that reaching the answer is complicated.
a math problem can be terribly complex, but it will still have an absolute result.

I wasn't talking about complex "calculations", but about complex results. A simple result is this:
- Killing is wrong.
That statement is simple, because it is absolute. It means that killing is always wrong. Now, a complex answer would be something like this:
- Killing is wrong, unless in cases of self-defense.
That statement is complex, because it is not absolute; it means killing is not always wrong.

but if your main point is that morality is just not what i think it is, youre just contradicting me.

I beg to differ, but on the last page you said to me: "what you think is morality, isnt actually morality, its our intuition/believes/tools of what it is and to expose it." So don't be a hypocrite.

no, what im saying is that the basis for morality is almost if not identical to the basis of math.

I know, and I disagree, which is also why I don't think anything I say about morals has anything to do with maths. And I'm not just telling you you're wrong, I'm telling you what my opinions are and why I disagree with yours, same as you do.

well, thats interesting. can you give me an example of a logical argument that reaches a false conclusion (of course, assuming all relevant aspects of the argument have been taken into consideration).

As lozerfac3 said, when one of the premises is false, the conclusion is also false, even if it is formally logical. Also, if one of your premises is subjective, the conclusions becomes subjective.

also, if i havnt been clear, the universal good im talking about doesnt have cultural influences. for example, eating bacon isnt bad, regardless of what judaism might tell you. eating bacon isnt good either. its just not a moral problem in the first place.

Maybe not for you or me, but for them it is! You can't just pick and choose only those things that are important to you and say "This is morality, everything else isn't". To be fair, it's what people (especially religious people) have done all the time, but it's not a rational approach. That's why I think morality is relative; it means different things to different people, and what someone considers morally wrong, might be just fine for someone else.
thebluerabbit
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All I’m saying is that this is what the Bible is teaching. You can choose to believe the Bible or not. My goal is to accurately describe Christians according to the Bible, not according to the world. So it’s not possible to apply the “No True Scotsman” fallacy yet.

then its more than probable that other sectors of christianity claim that you arent a christian actually. and they would be just as valid as your claim.

In this analogy, God is gravity. If something happens that contradicts my view about gravity, then gravity acts differently so I have to adjust. If something happens that contradicts my view about God, I would have to adjust my views about God. Doesn’t mean I have to reject God or gravity. Like I’m not gonna say oh bubbles float so gravity doesn’t exist.

you are playing with semantics here. if something contradicted your view on god, then the god you believe in after adjustments might as well be a different one. if you dont accept this, then jews, christians and muslims all believe in the same god with just different opinions about him.
this may be true in a technical sense but the beliefs are very different and so it would be understandable to say that each believes in a different god.

if god is very different from what you think it is, then rejecting what you believe in right now is similar to rejecting the god you believe in now, to believe in another. or to believe in something completely different.

the point isnt just the word we use to say whether its something different or the same, the point is the nature of the object. if you discover it has a totally different nature, it might as well be considered a different object.

See. This is what I mean when I say that you are wrongly outright judging me based on the religion I claim. Not once have I acted that way towards you. I’m just filling you guys in on my interpretation of the Bible. If you believe it’s wrong based on your morals, then what can I do about it? That’s not my goal in this conversation.

i already told you that im not going to talk about specifics of the narrative. what i am saying still stands. in fact, it explains why you are actively trying to focus on your interpretation of the bible. if someone says your assumption of the bible is wrong in the first place, then whether you start doubting yourself or not is relevant, and so, my point still stands.

if you refuse to doubt, just contradict others, tell them what is right is right because of the bible, and you wont go any deeper, it doesnt matter if this was your intention or not, what i said is still true.

This isn’t supposed to be a debate about whether it’s true or not. I can do that on my own time or we can do that on a different thread. Of course, I gotta criticize every view, but how can I criticize a view if it’s not even defined properly. Let us define what Christianity according to the Bible is first at least if you wanna get into that here.

no, because im not interested in delving deep into a specific religion. my points are there to show the flaw in an approach towards your belief, and that has nothing to do with what religion you belong to or even if you are religious at all. my point also criticizes atheists who dont believe in god and claim that its the undeniable truth.

your topic invites people to talk about your views and christianity, which means also people who criticize it. if you were looking for other christians to mess around with interpretations and answers to your questions under the accepted christian values and assumptions, you should have been clearer on that.

im not interested in interpreting christianity. and it makes sense that most non christians who also arent actively against christianity wont be interested in that either.

most people who are knowledgable enough about the religion are either religious/ex-religious/social activists that are against the religion.

its a very small circle compared to accepting a wider type of criticism and points of view.

A logical argument can reach a false conclusion if one of its premises are false.

well of course. what i meant is a logical argument that will lead you to a conclusion that actually doesnt correspond with the world.

true+true leads to necessarily true.
but oh, its actually false in the world.

Or maybe those tools don't exist. 1+1=2 is a mathematical equation that is true independent of any individual subjectivity. It includes operations like the addition that is always the same because that's how it is defined. But when you say "killing is wrong", what do you mean by killing? Who/what is killed, by whom, how, in what situation and for what reason/purpose? How do you define wrong, wrong for whom, wrong in what way? What are the consequences etc. All those things depend on the individual subjectivity, on the moral values of the people who judge the situation. Moral problems are judged by people, not solved.

those tools not existing is again just contradicting what im saying. i am also saying that solutions of moral problems are independent of individual subjectivity.

you cant tell me morality isnt objective because moral solutions are dependent on subjectivity when i just say that isnt the case. its the same as telling me just "no, morality is subjective".

the questions you are asking need answers and they are taken into consideration in the calculation of the moral problem. maybe we dont yet have an almost perfect system like we do for math problems, but that doesnt mean that morality is not objective. math wasnt always what it is today and we needed plenty of logical and philosophical work to have the system we do today.

moral problems ARE solved, not just judged. i cant tell you anymore than that because your last claim there is again just a simple contradiction of what im saying, so i can only contradict you back. you think this is its nature, and i dont. telling me more times in different words that this is its nature isnt a good argument against my view.

we also had to define numbers, operators, exceptions, negativity, etc. etc. math wasnt some thing that we found on the ground and analyzed. it is mental and objective at the same time, the same way i claim morality is.

1) That would mean you're defining morality by what you don't want it to be. That would be fine, of course. I just don't consider that a rational approach.

its not just about what i want it to be. it is similar to how i cant accept math is subjective even though some would argue that it is. it means that some sort of knowledge that you possess isnt knowledge at all, but just your opinion. and it makes its ties to the actual world very weak, perhaps on the level that you cant infer things on it anymore.

the fact that when we judge each other, we also tend to give it more weight shows how we truly view morality. when you see a murderer and you judge him as evil, you dont just mean that you dont like what he did (or at the very least, most people). if you claim for moral relativism, that murderer is just as good as he is bad, and his opinion of himself is just as valid as yours.
but we dont see such judgement that way. we feel that when people deserve something, they deserve it for a better reason than just "cause i feel that way". we perceive morality in an objective way. when others disagree with our morals, we think that they are wrong.

when someone tells you that murdering is fine, you think they are wrong. you think there is an argument here that has a more objective outcome that just "well i like chocolate and he doesnt".

two people cant argue about taste. but two people definitely argue about morality. we as humans cant live the way we do if we dont accept those arguments as valid.

2) Taste and moral value are not the same thing. They're both subjective, yes, but it would be incorrectly generalizing the issue to say that puts them on the same level. Taste are purely personal opinions, things that concern you alone. Moral values are what you think is right and wrong, not just for you but for everyone. Moral values concern not just you, but society at large.

there is a reason it concerns not just me and a reason you think its right and wrong for everyone.
if you think something is right and wrong for everyone, you also think that people with contradicting opinions are wrong. but if you are a moral relativist, you have to accept that nobody is actually right or wrong about this, and that there is no right and wrong for everyone.

its a self contradiction to be a moral relativist and also feel that there is a right and wrong for everyone.

That doesn't mean anything. We are all humans, we're all social animals and think the same in many ways. It is normal that killing is almost instinctively considered wrong; it doesn't mean that it's universal in any way.

we might be social animals, but life for all of us would be much easier if we agreed on some things that dont actually harm us. animal cruelty, veganism etc. are issues that if we all just acted "evil" we would be fine as a species.
it seems more probable to me that morality is something more concrete than just some sort of animal instinct that all of us possess which is similar in some ways and different in others.

That's your opinion, and that's OK. I disagree, for the reasons mentioned; I also think that it is not comparable to mathematics at all. But that's just my opinion.

then how do you explain your own view on someone killing someone for fun? you think there is nothing inherently wrong in it, but you also think that your ideas of right and wrong are right and wrong for everybody? so what would you say to the killer who says he is good and that he is right?
if you tell him he is wrong, you arent a moral relativist. if you tell him nobody is right or wrong, then youre saying your ideas of right and wrong arent right and wrong for everyone. and if you choose the latter, can you honestly say that that is your view?
you dont feel that such an act is more than just a matter of your preference?

I wasn't talking about complex "calculations", but about complex results. A simple result is this:
- Killing is wrong.
That statement is simple, because it is absolute. It means that killing is always wrong. Now, a complex answer would be something like this:
- Killing is wrong, unless in cases of self-defense.
That statement is complex, because it is not absolute; it means killing is not always wrong.

because killing is wrong will never be a result.

the calculation would be something more like "killing+self defense=right".

the result isnt complex. you just put part of the elements inside the result.

math is similar. you could say that 0 divided by anything will give you 0. but thats not true. 0/0 is not 0.

the result of a moral calculation will be some sort of value of "goodness". not a statement of "x is always right/wrong".

I beg to differ, but on the last page you said to me: "what you think is morality, isnt actually morality, its our intuition/believes/tools of what it is and to expose it." So don't be a hypocrite.

in response to this:

Morality is a set of values held by individuals shaped both by their personal identity as well as the society and culture they grew up in.

you told me what morality "is", so i told you what it "is".

if you want us to be more clear by making sure we add "in my opinion" every time we say something we arent sure of, i can do that. if in that sentence you meant its your opinion, then i also showed you my opinion.
if you claimed that is how morality is, then my claim is how morality actually is.

I know, and I disagree, which is also why I don't think anything I say about morals has anything to do with maths. And I'm not just telling you you're wrong, I'm telling you what my opinions are and why I disagree with yours, same as you do.

well thats different than what you said i should say which was along the lines of just disagreeing with you. im bringing in math to show similarities. im not just disagreeing.

As lozerfac3 said, when one of the premises is false, the conclusion is also false, even if it is formally logical. Also, if one of your premises is subjective, the conclusions becomes subjective.

if thats what you mean then i dont see how your argument is valid. in morality too, if one of the premises is wrong, you might get a wrong result. im also saying that none of the premises in a moral argument should be subjective.

Maybe not for you or me, but for them it is! You can't just pick and choose only those things that are important to you and say "This is morality, everything else isn't". To be fair, it's what people (especially religious people) have done all the time, but it's not a rational approach. That's why I think morality is relative; it means different things to different people, and what someone considers morally wrong, might be just fine for someone else.

they wouldnt be able to deny the fact that their culture has resulted in their idea of morality stems from their culture. if their last attempt to explain it ends with "its how its always been", "its tradition", "its in the bible" then its not a rational argument.

the things i "choose" are based on rationality, and when it comes to the most simplest of things, they would also be agreed upon with people who dont have a cultural reason to deny them.

of course, this relies on the assumption that a person whos values are at the very least mostly independent from culture, would definitely agree that killing for fun is bad.

a person from a culture who believes that killing for fun is fine might disagree. though i find it hard to believe such a culture could exist, where anyone can kill anyone for fun.

if those people actually have a rational argument behind "eating bacon is evil", it would be considered a valid premise. but i doubt they could find such an argument and not face very simple criticism that just shuts it down immediately.

lozerfac3
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@HahiHa

I can understand this, that God would also work through the acts of people. But you have to keep in mind that at least at first, and for a long time, those believers had no idea of the existence of so many other "godless" people around the world; therefore they couldn't be expected to go and preach the word of God to those people. God could have revealed Himself to those people then and there, yet He apparently did nothing of the sort and waited for conquest and colonisation to spread the word in a highly questionable way.

Yeah all that conquest and stuff could have been avoided. The Bible definitely doesn't endorse it, so that's why I'm hesitant to suggest that God personally sent those people out to do those things. I know that's not what you're concerned about. You're asking why does God let those things happen. That explanation goes back to why God lets us continue in sin. But to isolate this particular problem, it's not that God tells us to spread the word through military or political power (our power, which is a sin) but rather through love and patience (God's power, which is pure and good). Even though people have missed that message in history, God can still use our sin for good. God still loves the persecuted. For example, Joseph was betrayed by his brothers who initially wanted to kill him, but opted to sell him into slavery instead. While this is morally wrong, God used it for Joseph's good by making him second in command to Pharaoh. So while the gospel wasn't spread with the right intentions or with the right means, I believe God uses it for his good work.

I see that, but I also see constructive, kind and altruistic patterns. My experience of life so far has also shown me that those patterns are not really different in believers and non-believers. Not that I'd expect believers to be perfect; but it seems that those who were already kind, hold kind beliefs and interpretations, while those who were already destructive, use those beliefs to sow more dissension. So no, we're not perfect. But my experience departs form the teachings of the Bible in at least those two ways: we're not born evil, and religion doesn't appear to fundamentally change people.

Yeah I understand. I don't hold that against you because that's your personal experience. And to rabbit's point that I'm still condemning you because I believe that you're going to hell, why do you think I'm on this website sharing this news to you guys? I do want you experience God how I do, but at the same time, I'm not going to force it on you guys because I respect you guys' beliefs. How is that condemning at all?

My goal here is not to convert you guys. My goal is to portray Christianity how the Bible teaches and share my experience with you guys. I love this website. I think I'm always check in once in a while as long as it's operating.

This might be the reason why you started your OP with the assumptions already pointed out early on ^^
"Everyone rejects God"; is that why you assume all who do not believe must be rejecting God for some reason or other? But how can one reject something one does believe exists? As you said, demons would be evil for rejecting God, despite obviously believing in His existence. But someone who does not believe in the existence of God cannot reject Him, cannot commit that ultimate sin; so on what basis would a non-believer be de facto sent to Hell?

That's a good observation lol. I believe that, while non-believers don't reject God intellectually (because that's impossible since they don't know God), they still reject God in their hearts by pursuing their own desires. There might still be hope for them. I'm not sure how biblical this is, but C.S. Lewis, a prominent author and Christian thinker, wrote about a character in the Chronicles of Narnia who followed that universe's equivalent of Satan. This character only wanted to pursue the true God but "Satan" tricked him into thinking that he was God. However, at the end of the story Aslan, the incarnation of God in that universe, attributed all his works in the name of Satan to His own name because that character was pursuing God. Like I said, I'm not sure how biblical that is, but it might solve your problem of people who never knew God. It's also really important to note that this was an exception. No one else received the same favor from Aslan. I think in the real world, it would also be rare because God looks deep in the heart and He knows if someone is living to please Him for goodness sake or if they have selfish desires. I'm bringing this back again, "No one is righteous. No not one".

I think one thing that is constant throughout the Bible regardless of covenants, God values righteousness and faith. Since pure righteousness is unattainable, faith is what God looks for the most.

@thebluerabbit

then its more than probable that other sectors of christianity claim that you arent a christian actually. and they would be just as valid as your claim.

True. It matters who is the most biblically sound. It's also hard since some sects read a different version of the Bible with additional books. This is where we would have to get into Bible history, but I'm not very experienced with that. I might make that a goal for this summer, to research that more.

the point isnt just the word we use to say whether its something different or the same, the point is the nature of the object. if you discover it has a totally different nature, it might as well be considered a different object.

If this was the case, then no one would be able to worship the true God. We have limited knowledge and limited knowledge acquisition which means we can't know everything about God as soon as we come into the faith. There is always room for learning.

I get what you mean though. There might be a point where the God you believe in is fundamentally different from the God you believed in a couple years ago because you learned something new that makes more sense logically. Or you might just reject any god because of this new knowledge.

To the original point, we do have to think critically about our beliefs. I do too. I just think that I have built up enough knowledge about my faith that I have logical answers to most attacks on it or answers to most doubts about it.

i already told you that im not going to talk about specifics of the narrative. what i am saying still stands. in fact, it explains why you are actively trying to focus on your interpretation of the bible. if someone says your assumption of the bible is wrong in the first place, then whether you start doubting yourself or not is relevant, and so, my point still stands.

if you refuse to doubt, just contradict others, tell them what is right is right because of the bible, and you wont go any deeper, it doesnt matter if this was your intention or not, what i said is still true.

Yeah, I see your point. I mean I'll welcome your criticisms, but at least understand where I'm coming from. I explained myself in response to HahiHa ^. If you have something to say about it, feel free to quote what I said to him.

no, because im not interested in delving deep into a specific religion. my points are there to show the flaw in an approach towards your belief, and that has nothing to do with what religion you belong to or even if you are religious at all. my point also criticizes atheists who dont believe in god and claim that its the undeniable truth.

your topic invites people to talk about your views and christianity, which means also people who criticize it. if you were looking for other christians to mess around with interpretations and answers to your questions under the accepted christian values and assumptions, you should have been clearer on that.

im not interested in interpreting christianity. and it makes sense that most non christians who also arent actively against christianity wont be interested in that either.

Fair enough. But if you want to really criticize my beliefs, try to really understand my point of view rather than using straw man arguments.

if some people are chosen to know about him, while others had never had a chance and go to hell, god definitely shows favoritism and prefers people over others.

Favoritism has a bad connotation because when parents favorite a child, they tend to neglect their other children. But God's favoritism is righteous because none of us are his children until He accepts us as his children. We are his enemies before we are his children, so He has no obligation to treat us with any favor.

i suppose so, though the deity part is also problematic.
if the deity itself literally could not be different, is the manifestation of morality and identical to it, could not change morality on a whim etc. etc. then yes.
if the deity is just a person who is the most powerful, it is still subjective.

if both descriptions fit and are contradicting each other, he would either be both (which would also be a contradiction), or neither. did you just pick objective cause you prefer it?

Both descriptions fit, but one of your premises is false. If the deity is the person who is the most powerful, that doesn't mean his judgments are necessarily subjective. God being the holy and unchangeable in his ways means that his enforcement of his judgments are objective.

thebluerabbit
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Yeah all that conquest and stuff could have been avoided. The Bible definitely doesn't endorse it, so that's why I'm hesitant to suggest that God personally sent those people out to do those things. I know that's not what you're concerned about. You're asking why does God let those things happen. That explanation goes back to why God lets us continue in sin. But to isolate this particular problem, it's not that God tells us to spread the word through military or political power (our power, which is a sin) but rather through love and patience (God's power, which is pure and good). Even though people have missed that message in history, God can still use our sin for good. God still loves the persecuted. For example, Joseph was betrayed by his brothers who initially wanted to kill him, but opted to sell him into slavery instead. While this is morally wrong, God used it for Joseph's good by making him second in command to Pharaoh. So while the gospel wasn't spread with the right intentions or with the right means, I believe God uses it for his good work.

but how can you spread a message of "live the way we tell you or you will face eternal suffering" be spread through love? in the very end, you said its a matter of life and death. its pretty much the reason conversion is encouraged. you cant spread a message in a more positive way than the message itself.
i suppose if you are confused or manage to convince yourself that somehow threatening someone this way is love, you could spread it with "love" but that is very different from for example, telling someone they should study so they can become more intelligent, or exercise because it is good for their health.

declining health isnt an entity that harms you because you didnt take care of yourself. thats why even if the consequence is negative, the message itself is not.
i would understand this point if the god you believed in was either not an entity, but just some form of natural law similar to karma that strikes for a set of strange rules, or on the other hand, a very manipulative and malicious entity you are warning us from.

Yeah I understand. I don't hold that against you because that's your personal experience. And to rabbit's point that I'm still condemning you because I believe that you're going to hell, why do you think I'm on this website sharing this news to you guys? I do want you experience God how I do, but at the same time, I'm not going to force it on you guys because I respect you guys' beliefs. How is that condemning at all?

it is condemning because regardless, you believe we will burn in hell, and it seems you think its ok, even if it is "agonizing" for you.
also, if someone believed that lava was good for them and was about to dive into that pool, would you stop them by force, or let them because you respect their beliefs?

im assuming you are a reasonable person who would stop them by force. but then why? i can only think of two reasons.

1. lava harming you is more certain for you than the place of non believers in hell. or in other words, lava harming you is more certain for you than gods existence, his law, his punishment etc.

2. you are just covering for yourself. nobody would look bad at you if you stopped someone from jumping into lava by force, but you would look very bad if you tried to convert people forcefully.

you say it is agonizing to you to have friends who you believe will go to hell. but honestly, if it truly was agonizing and you truly believed that is what is going to happen, it would drive you to do everything you can to convert them and save them.

what you are doing here, having a little discussion with us when you know its not going to convert anyone is very similar to giving the minimum effort and then just let things roll on their own because you did your part and now your conscience is clean.

it goes back to what was previously said about "apathy". youd be surprised how easy it is to lie to yourself. convincing yourself that you are doing the right thing, or have good intentions to justify yourself, telling yourself you are agonizing and not acting on it, saying your religion is one of love while brushing aside the problems with that claim.

you want us to see christianity and god the way you do. but we wont, because we know how you see those, and we think it is wrong and blind (at the very least, i do).
i think you have done a lot of work to create a comfortable opinion of yourself that allows you to do and say some things while still believing you are saying good things.

it doesnt mean you are a bad person, but it means you wont acknowledge how deranged and harmful your ideals could actually be.

My goal here is not to convert you guys. My goal is to portray Christianity how the Bible teaches and share my experience with you guys. I love this website. I think I'm always check in once in a while as long as it's operating.

why isnt your goal converting us? arent we in deep need of saving? arent we doomed to go to hell and suffer for all eternity? your goal is exactly the reason we cant agree with you. you want us to believe a view is what the view says about itself. it shows just how much it lacks self criticism and how it ignores problems that rise when others show them.

its obvious that your bible would portray your religion in the most positive, loving and purest way possible. why wouldnt it? but every religion which encourages conversion and punishes non believers would portray itself that way.

your religion isnt more warm and inviting than any other religion or cult would claim it is. and it suffers from major flaws that we introduced that are just brushed aside. they are either avoided by using some sort of interpretation that not even all people of that religion would agree with, or even worse, just tell us this is how it is and we have to accept it because its right because it says so.

That's a good observation lol. I believe that, while non-believers don't reject God intellectually (because that's impossible since they don't know God), they still reject God in their hearts by pursuing their own desires. There might still be hope for them. I'm not sure how biblical this is, but C.S. Lewis, a prominent author and Christian thinker, wrote about a character in the Chronicles of Narnia who followed that universe's equivalent of Satan. This character only wanted to pursue the true God but "Satan" tricked him into thinking that he was God. However, at the end of the story Aslan, the incarnation of God in that universe, attributed all his works in the name of Satan to His own name because that character was pursuing God. Like I said, I'm not sure how biblical that is, but it might solve your problem of people who never knew God. It's also really important to note that this was an exception. No one else received the same favor from Aslan. I think in the real world, it would also be rare because God looks deep in the heart and He knows if someone is living to please Him for goodness sake or if they have selfish desires. I'm bringing this back again, "No one is righteous. No not one".

we are not able to choose our hearts. god is responsible for our nature. if that is the case, god had decided from the very beginning to make people suffer for all eternity. also, do you realise you yourself might be that character? that you were tricked by satan? and you cant prove that you werent tricked by satan either. the bible itself might be a trick, and i wouldnt be surprised if it was, considering all the suffering it has caused.

you also talk about how people either choose god or their own desires. it is very self centered. not everyone who doesnt belong to your religion is selfish. there are many non religious people who do good for the sake of good. what you say sounds as if you are accusing them as having ulterior motives.

it is very ironic when those people (especially if atheists), actually dont believe that they will gain anything from their good deeds, but christians (and other religious people) do expect to gain the ultimate prize for their goodness.

the non religious people who do such deeds are the most selfless people you can find. when you always have this looming could of heaven/hell above you, it will always be a part of your choices, meaning your choices will be affected by your own desires and fears.

I think one thing that is constant throughout the Bible regardless of covenants, God values righteousness and faith. Since pure righteousness is unattainable, faith is what God looks for the most.

that sounds like an excuse to me. you say he appreciates goodness and faith, but also says that you can never be good enough for him, so your only way to be accepted is to obey and do as he says and believe in him.

you might as well just say that being good doesnt matter at all. and thats true if all it takes to get to heaven is to believe, while it doesnt matter how good you are, if you dont believe, you suffer in hell.

True. It matters who is the most biblically sound. It's also hard since some sects read a different version of the Bible with additional books. This is where we would have to get into Bible history, but I'm not very experienced with that. I might make that a goal for this summer, to research that more.

if you arent knowledgeable in that, how can you say that you are christian? how can you say you believe and follow the true god and religion? you are ruling out different sectors when you probably dont even know what they think or believe in. and if you agree with this, thinking that maybe your sector isnt the correct one, why wont you also not think that maybe your religion is the correct one?

in fact, you yourself practically said that different sectors are actually different religions all together. so saying that other sectors could be more biblically sound, is practically saying that you dont have complete faith in your religion.

To the original point, we do have to think critically about our beliefs. I do too. I just think that I have built up enough knowledge about my faith that I have logical answers to most attacks on it or answers to most doubts about it.

if your answers are just quotes of the bible, when the bible is what people are calling to doubt, or telling people that "it doesnt seem right but it is right", then your answers arent good.
thinking critically about your belief isnt just looking for explanations to make your belief consistent. it is to attack your own belief head on without mercy, putting it to doubt, and accepting that it might not be true.
if you are not willing to let go of the assumption that your belief is definitely true, you arent thinking critically about your belief.

your goal when "thinking critically" is to enhance your beliefs strength. what your goal is supposed to be is to prove that its wrong, or at the very least, show that it isnt necessarily right.
otherwise, you are just creating a bubble or an echo chamber, filtering out anything that doesnt suit you.

Yeah, I see your point. I mean I'll welcome your criticisms, but at least understand where I'm coming from. I explained myself in response to HahiHa ^. If you have something to say about it, feel free to quote what I said to him.

the problem isnt that i dont understand where you are coming from. i do. it is very human and flawed to have such an approach, and it is also very comfortable to have it. but just because it is understandable and human, doesnt mean its ok. perhaps in a world where everyone had the same belief, it would be socially ok, but even then, intellectually, it isnt ok.
you are preventing yourself from participating in a deeper, more intellectual discussion (not necessarily with other people, but with yourself) when you do that. it is simple to a person denying something happened because it is too scarring for him to deal with.

as i said very early, it is fine to believe. but it is not fine to believe blindly. doubt your beliefs, and if you still believe, the faith and the argument for it will be stronger.

i believe in god. i dont believe that believing in god is important. yet i also feel this kind of dread or "wrongness" when i for a moment think "god doesnt exist" or say it. i wasnt born in an atheist family, and i also keep some religious rules, not because i believe i have to or god will punish me, but as a way to respect god and the tradition.

and yet, when i break those rules, usually by mistake, rarely though occasionally because i feel they are ridiculous, i feel this psychological guilt over me.

but despite this guilt and dread, i have to doubt, i have to criticize my views, because its the intellectually right thing to do. it makes my stances stronger and better (also ethically), and prevents me from being blind and blindly judging others. and i can only do that because i accept that there is a possibility i will reject my beliefs.

i also didnt start out with this kind of approach. despite my family not having educated me to keep those rules no matter what because it is evil to not do so, i still felt there is something wrong when you dont do it.
it is a cultural shock that makes it difficult for a human to accept that the things he finds to be natural and matter of factly could be totally different to other people.

you can see this a lot in jews, who believe in certain rules regarding food. despite that, they dont claim eating those foods is evil. they also will tend to find that food disgusting (this is what regarding something as taboo does to you), yet on the other hand, realise that "hey... most people eat it and love it. its probably actually good and theres nothing wrong about it".

your feelings arent always rational, and thats fine. but you also have to understand it when they arent rational and that things can indeed be different and accept that.
and by accepting, im not saying "i accept that they are different and its a shame they will go to hell for it, but i accept them".

Fair enough. But if you want to really criticize my beliefs, try to really understand my point of view rather than using straw man arguments.

but i am really criticizing your beliefs. you just focus on details when i criticize bigger ideas that are formed because of your beliefs. im doing the opposite of attacking a straw man. we could argue all we want about some specific verse and how to interpret it. attacking the core, which is the morals, the ideas, the consequences is a more important element.

im not christian, im not going to attack your interpretations but showing you other quotes from the bible. and thats not attacking what you really believe in. its two people believing in the same thing with some minor differences who are trying to convince each other of their interpretations.

its like two readers arguing about their theories on a murder mystery novel, in contrast to two people arguing about whether the novel is good/fair/valid etc.

Favoritism has a bad connotation because when parents favorite a child, they tend to neglect their other children. But God's favoritism is righteous because none of us are his children until He accepts us as his children. We are his enemies before we are his children, so He has no obligation to treat us with any favor.

what? thats even worse. he creates us, and treats us as enemies until we submit? thats like two parents neglecting a child from the very beginning because he isnt obedient. in the case of favoritism, at least the parents can pretend and make sure they treat the children equally.

god doesnt get to create us, throw some of us in worse places than others, make some of our lives easier from the get go, and then to be considered righteous. it sounds even worse when someone like you, who is considered a favorite child says something like that.

Both descriptions fit, but one of your premises is false. If the deity is the person who is the most powerful, that doesn't mean his judgments are necessarily subjective. God being the holy and unchangeable in his ways means that his enforcement of his judgments are objective.

if god is a person, regardless of how powerful he is, then if good relies on him alone, the judgements are subjective. holy is irrelevant, that word means practically nothing because that is what is put to doubt.
and you already see him changing throughout stories. hell, even the "correct" religion changed.

morality which is determined by only god, is only objective is god is not a person, but some concept like "justice" or "universe" or "nature", and it cant be anything that is not that.

the god that is portrayed in the bible, is definitely not just the universe or nature, he is a person. if god makes decisions, and acts as a being, he is a subject, and anything that relies on him and no system of rules outside of him is subjective.

lozerfac3
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but how can you spread a message of "live the way we tell you or you will face eternal suffering" be spread through love? in the very end, you said its a matter of life and death. its pretty much the reason conversion is encouraged. you cant spread a message in a more positive way than the message itself.

That’s only half the message. The real message is Jesus who gave Himself for us as a sacrifice for our sins. This is the most loving act in all of history because we receive infinite mercy from God if we accept Christ and because it’s so selfless. Jesus took on God’s wrath for us so we don’t have to. To me, this is the most amazing and fresh and soul satisfying news ever.

it is condemning because regardless, you believe we will burn in hell, and it seems you think its ok, even if it is "agonizing" for you.
also, if someone believed that lava was good for them and was about to dive into that pool, would you stop them by force, or let them because you respect their beliefs?

I tried to stop them by force but they were too stubborn to believe me. Now I have to convince them patiently because they really love this lava.

I realized that force isn’t going to work to help someone realize that the lava isn’t good for them. You gotta show someone that there are better things than lava like a pool of fresh water. This is how you spread God’s message lovingly.

you say it is agonizing to you to have friends who you believe will go to hell. but honestly, if it truly was agonizing and you truly believed that is what is going to happen, it would drive you to do everything you can to convert them and save them.

This is what I mean when I say you are straw manning. Maybe it’s not straw manning in this case, but you don’t understand what I’m saying. I didn’t say it was agonizing to have friends that I believe are going to hell. There’s still hope for them. I pray earnestly rather than frantically try to convert them or else they’re going to die and suffer. The gospel is of course an urgent message, but once you have laid out the facts, you have to wait patiently and ask God to work in them. I guess it does go back to the original question, to which I would say it is a heart issue. And only God can fix the heart, so any attempts on my part to fix them would be arrogant and foolish. The key is to trust God.

why isnt your goal converting us? arent we in deep need of saving? arent we doomed to go to hell and suffer for all eternity? your goal is exactly the reason we cant agree with you. you want us to believe a view is what the view says about itself. it shows just how much it lacks self criticism and how it ignores problems that rise when others show them.

It’s not my goal to convert because that’s not my work to do. My work is like Paul’s. All I need to do is lay out the foundation of the gospel, plant the seed. Then God will do the building and growing. It’s God’s work to save you, not mine.

you also talk about how people either choose god or their own desires. it is very self centered. not everyone who doesnt belong to your religion is selfish. there are many non religious people who do good for the sake of good. what you say sounds as if you are accusing them as having ulterior motives.

It’s the opposite of self centered. It’s God centered. I guess I am accusing them of ulterior motives, but not because I claim to know what is going on deep in their heart; I don’t claim to know what those ulterior motives are exactly. Only God knows that. I’m just going based of the Bible which says that people don’t love God. They don’t seek Him and they don’t love his Son. They don’t trust in the loving power of Jesus Christ.

it is very ironic when those people (especially if atheists), actually dont believe that they will gain anything from their good deeds, but christians (and other religious people) do expect to gain the ultimate prize for their goodness.

Nah see. That’s where Christians are different. We don’t expect to gain the ultimate prize for our goodness, but for Christ’s goodness.

if you arent knowledgeable in that, how can you say that you are christian? how can you say you believe and follow the true god and religion? you are ruling out different sectors when you probably dont even know what they think or believe in. and if you agree with this, thinking that maybe your sector isnt the correct one, why wont you also not think that maybe your religion is the correct one?

What’s more important is knowing the truth rather than knowing the counterfeits. Like with a dollar bill. It’s easier to discern a real dollar from fake dollar if you know what a real dollar looks like. If all you know are what fake dollars look like, you would have to keep sifting through all the the fakes in order to determine if the one in front of you is fake. The point is, you identify the true doctrine based on its own characteristics not by the characteristics of fake doctrines.

in fact, you yourself practically said that different sectors are actually different religions all together. so saying that other sectors could be more biblically sound, is practically saying that you dont have complete faith in your religion.

But I didn’t say that. I don’t mean that all different sects are different religions entirely. Like I said before, there is room to disagree on the little things. You just have to know where to pick your battles.

your goal when "thinking critically" is to enhance your beliefs strength. what your goal is supposed to be is to prove that its wrong, or at the very least, show that it isnt necessarily right.
otherwise, you are just creating a bubble or an echo chamber, filtering out anything that doesnt suit you.

How ironic.

but i am really criticizing your beliefs. you just focus on details when i criticize bigger ideas that are formed because of your beliefs. im doing the opposite of attacking a straw man. we could argue all we want about some specific verse and how to interpret it. attacking the core, which is the morals, the ideas, the consequences is a more important element.

I accused you of straw manning when you mocked me and accused me of being condescending. It’s probably not the right fallacy tho now that I think of it. Either way, my point still stands. If you want to really criticize my beliefs, you have to go after the arguments rather than the consequences of those arguments or else you’re going to miss the bigger picture.

what? thats even worse. he creates us, and treats us as enemies until we submit? thats like two parents neglecting a child from the very beginning because he isnt obedient. in the case of favoritism, at least the parents can pretend and make sure they treat the children equally.

He treats us as enemies because we are hostile towards God first. It goes back to what I said before about how we don’t desire God but rather worldly things. He has every right to turn his back on us, but instead He shows mercy to all of us. This mercy is different from the mercy and grace He shows to his children tho.

god doesnt get to create us, throw some of us in worse places than others, make some of our lives easier from the get go, and then to be considered righteous. it sounds even worse when someone like you, who is considered a favorite child says something like that.

Nooo I am far from being a favorite child. I wasn’t gifted with great spiritual gifts like other Christians. I am merely a child of God. For those who aren’t considered children of God, they can’t even be called favorites or not because they aren’t even his children. And I don’t think God necessarily throws people into different life situations the way you put it. We happen to be in the place we are because the world is naturally like that. The world gives privileges to people like that, but God doesn’t consider those things when accepting people into his kingdom.

if god is a person, regardless of how powerful he is, then if good relies on him alone, the judgements are subjective. holy is irrelevant, that word means practically nothing because that is what is put to doubt.
and you already see him changing throughout stories. hell, even the "correct" religion changed.

God is not just a person. You said yourself that if God “literally could not be different, is the manifestation of morality and identical to it, could not change morality on a whim etc.” then morality is objective.

Morals never changed in the Bible. Maybe subjective morals like cultural ones changed, but not the big morals. I’m not really sure how I would label them. I think there are two different types of morals: The subjective morals that HahiHa vouches for and the objective morals that you vouch for.

The subjective morals are things that the world (culture, governments, self) deems good. Worldly morals are definitely subjective, but they are still useful for navigating the world. The objective morals are things that God says are good. This concerns heaven and navigating spiritual things rather than the world.

You’re right that God “changed religions”, but what is constant is what Gos says is good. God wants us to desire Him more than anything that the world gives us. This is the objective morality. I think the consistency is more clear to see when we define the two covenants. The first is a covenant of works where we have to work for our salvation (Judaism B.C.) and the second is a covenant of faith where Jesus fulfilled the first covenant for us (Christianity A.D.). Both are a technically a covenant of works, but Jesus completed those works so we can enter into a new covenant with God. Jesus did what we could not do which is desiring God more than anything in this world.

thebluerabbit
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That’s only half the message. The real message is Jesus who gave Himself for us as a sacrifice for our sins. This is the most loving act in all of history because we receive infinite mercy from God if we accept Christ and because it’s so selfless. Jesus took on God’s wrath for us so we don’t have to. To me, this is the most amazing and fresh and soul satisfying news ever.

it is that way to you because if it wasnt, youd have to deal with some terrible issues. you say "real" message, but in the end, what i say is true, and the message is "obey or die". and once again, you are portraying god as some sort of villain that jesus had to save us from, not as a loving god. showing mercy for obedience is not a loving act, its a controlling one.
youre also saying that if jesus didnt sacrifice himself, god would just throw everybody into hell without caring who it would be.

either god is really evil, or he has no choice but to do so and in that case, he is very very limited.

I tried to stop them by force but they were too stubborn to believe me. Now I have to convince them patiently because they really love this lava.

stopping a person from jumping into lava by force is grabbing them and taking them away, not saying the same thing but in a higher tone.

I realized that force isn’t going to work to help someone realize that the lava isn’t good for them. You gotta show someone that there are better things than lava like a pool of fresh water. This is how you spread God’s message lovingly.

"but a pool of fresh water isnt better. its a trick. you are the blind one who wont jump with me in the lava"
there, same argument from the opposite side. you can love all you want, he also shares his message with love, it doesnt make any of you right.

i dont care how warmly you hold me when you tell me to obey or go to hell. you can clean your conscience by saying you have good intentions, but you are just trying to convince people to obey an evil entity.

This is what I mean when I say you are straw manning. Maybe it’s not straw manning in this case, but you don’t understand what I’m saying. I didn’t say it was agonizing to have friends that I believe are going to hell. There’s still hope for them. I pray earnestly rather than frantically try to convert them or else they’re going to die and suffer. The gospel is of course an urgent message, but once you have laid out the facts, you have to wait patiently and ask God to work in them. I guess it does go back to the original question, to which I would say it is a heart issue. And only God can fix the heart, so any attempts on my part to fix them would be arrogant and foolish. The key is to trust God.

dont you realise what you are saying? in the end, you are still following someone who will forever harm your friends just because they dont believe in something.
and you are then begging that entity to work in them because only that entity can "fix" them. and that means the entity is responsible for their belief and whether they go to hell or not, not them.
so in the end, again, god doomed people from the very beginning. if he just doesnt feel like "fixing" them, they had no chance in the first place.

It’s not my goal to convert because that’s not my work to do. My work is like Paul’s. All I need to do is lay out the foundation of the gospel, plant the seed. Then God will do the building and growing. It’s God’s work to save you, not mine.

then he is either lazy, apathetic, evil, not caring, or really bad at his job.

It’s the opposite of self centered. It’s God centered. I guess I am accusing them of ulterior motives, but not because I claim to know what is going on deep in their heart; I don’t claim to know what those ulterior motives are exactly. Only God knows that. I’m just going based of the Bible which says that people don’t love God. They don’t seek Him and they don’t love his Son. They don’t trust in the loving power of Jesus Christ.

so you are judging people, not accepting their good deeds, lowering their values as human beings, see them as worse, and always suspect their motives, thinking they are selfish, all because they dont believe in your religion.
pretty messed up if you ask me.
it is self centered, you are just throwing responsibility away by saying "hey, its not as if i came up with this, the bible tells me this".

Nah see. That’s where Christians are different. We don’t expect to gain the ultimate prize for our goodness, but for Christ’s goodness.

you expect to get your prize because you are christians. this is even worse than expecting to get a prize for being good. on the other hand, those atheists are good because they actually do have pure intentions.
you just cant face the idea that something is pure because your religion speaks so badly of everyone, and makes you feel better about yourself by saying you are a slightly better form of filth than others who dont share your religion.

sorry, but an atheist who acts like this, is a much better person than a christian who is just a neutral person, and is desrving of heaven way more than the christian.

What’s more important is knowing the truth rather than knowing the counterfeits. Like with a dollar bill. It’s easier to discern a real dollar from fake dollar if you know what a real dollar looks like. If all you know are what fake dollars look like, you would have to keep sifting through all the the fakes in order to determine if the one in front of you is fake. The point is, you identify the true doctrine based on its own characteristics not by the characteristics of fake doctrines.

problem is, you dont know how a real dollar looks like, you only think you know. same way you dont realise you believe in a fake religion, and that the true one is actually different.

But I didn’t say that. I don’t mean that all different sects are different religions entirely. Like I said before, there is room to disagree on the little things. You just have to know where to pick your battles.

that just means you will be willing to think of some sectors so long as they are close to what you already believe in. again, you arent challenging your views, you just feel that you do because you arent 100% stubborn and blindly following, only 99%.

How ironic.

elaborate.

I accused you of straw manning when you mocked me and accused me of being condescending. It’s probably not the right fallacy tho now that I think of it. Either way, my point still stands. If you want to really criticize my beliefs, you have to go after the arguments rather than the consequences of those arguments or else you’re going to miss the bigger picture.

its the opposite. you are missing the bigger picture because you choose to focus on details, quotes and interpretations. isntead, you ignore the moral consequences, the harm it could cause to others, and criticism that talks about the very issues of your religion.

"harry is a wizard" can be criticized by "harry potter is not real" way more effectively than "oh but in this book this specific quote says this, which means harry actually might not be a wizard, or perhaps a combination of two things with magical abilities which means that technically, he is actually a mage and not a wizard".

im not a part of your club. i dont have to delve deep into your detailed points when i am criticizing something much bigger, which is your belief itself.

He treats us as enemies because we are hostile towards God first. It goes back to what I said before about how we don’t desire God but rather worldly things. He has every right to turn his back on us, but instead He shows mercy to all of us. This mercy is different from the mercy and grace He shows to his children tho.

wow, poor god. i hope he isnt offended by my hostility when i dare to exist and let the life i was doomed to have effect my perception in the most passive way possible cause i have no control over it whatsoever. i hope he shows me mercy and grace by throwing me into hell.

your god sounds like a vindictive, vengeful and manipulative obsessed girlfriend (the one who is your girlfriend but you just dont know that yet).

honestly, you are saying you are trying to give us the loving message of god, but the more you are talking about his nature and trying to justify it, the worse the christian god looks like.

you really are going to just be left with "well, i did my best. this is how things are. choose my religion or burn".

Nooo I am far from being a favorite child. I wasn’t gifted with great spiritual gifts like other Christians. I am merely a child of God. For those who aren’t considered children of God, they can’t even be called favorites or not because they aren’t even his children. And I don’t think God necessarily throws people into different life situations the way you put it. We happen to be in the place we are because the world is naturally like that. The world gives privileges to people like that, but God doesn’t consider those things when accepting people into his kingdom.

if we arent his children, he shouldnt throw us into hell. and god obviously does consider those things. because a kid who was born to a tribe that never heard of christianity will definitely go to hell because he dared to be born there, while the typical child of a christian family already won the game the day he was born.

God is not just a person. You said yourself that if God “literally could not be different, is the manifestation of morality and identical to it, could not change morality on a whim etc.” then morality is objective.

but your god could be different. if he couldnt, thats a limitation isnt it? and god has also shown to change, hell, even the correct religion changed.

Morals never changed in the Bible. Maybe subjective morals like cultural ones changed, but not the big morals. I’m not really sure how I would label them. I think there are two different types of morals: The subjective morals that HahiHa vouches for and the objective morals that you vouch for.

yeah, because killing never started off as an absolute sin, then changed to being completely justified depending on context. unless you are saying that is not a change, but some sort of specific rule that always existed inside the seemingly simple statement.

its a possible thing to lean on, but not very graceful.

The subjective morals are things that the world (culture, governments, self) deems good. Worldly morals are definitely subjective, but they are still useful for navigating the world. The objective morals are things that God says are good. This concerns heaven and navigating spiritual things rather than the world.

i find it very arrogant that you call subjective morals cultural, when religion is one of the most cultural things that had ever existed. there are tons of different religions out there and that is because of different cultures. your religion is a culture just like any other religion, just because you believe it is the true story doesnt make it not cultural.

your religious morals are a result of the culture you happened to be in.

You’re right that God “changed religions”, but what is constant is what Gos says is good. God wants us to desire Him more than anything that the world gives us. This is the objective morality. I think the consistency is more clear to see when we define the two covenants. The first is a covenant of works where we have to work for our salvation (Judaism B.C.) and the second is a covenant of faith where Jesus fulfilled the first covenant for us (Christianity A.D.). Both are a technically a covenant of works, but Jesus completed those works so we can enter into a new covenant with God. Jesus did what we could not do which is desiring God more than anything in this world.

just a convenient story you tell yourself so you dont have to put much emphasis on the rules of the old testament and disregard it whenever its comfortable. also, when you can interpret what your religion says is good and bad, then even if what he said didnt change, it is very vague, leaving us with dire consequences if we interpret wrong.

lozerfac3
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lozerfac3
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it is that way to you because if it wasnt, youd have to deal with some terrible issues. you say "real" message, but in the end, what i say is true, and the message is "obey or die". and once again, you are portraying god as some sort of villain that jesus had to save us from, not as a loving god. showing mercy for obedience is not a loving act, its a controlling one.
youre also saying that if jesus didnt sacrifice himself, god would just throw everybody into hell without caring who it would be.

Huh? I just gave you the solution to your problem and you just brush it aside and say “nope, I’m interpreting what you’re saying correctly.” You won’t be able to understand anything I’m saying if you don’t try. Please just at least try to understand.

And you’re right that Jesus has to save us from God. He is the villain if you don’t accept Christ. But Jesus Christ is also God, so if you accept Him, God becomes the hero. It just depends on perspective. A glass half full/half empty type thing. If you don’t believe that Jesus is God, you have to at least understand that God sent Jesus to pay for our sins. But that shouldn’t be a problem because He is God.

stopping a person from jumping into lava by force is grabbing them and taking them away, not saying the same thing but in a higher tone.

Okay but how would I do that in terms of converting someone? Strap them to a chair and tell them to believe? That’s absurd and no one would believe if that’s the case.

then he is either lazy, apathetic, evil, not caring, or really bad at his job.

I said it’s his work not his job. He is not obligated to save anyone, except for those who He promises to save.

that just means you will be willing to think of some sectors so long as they are close to what you already believe in. again, you arent challenging your views, you just feel that you do because you arent 100% stubborn and blindly following, only 99%.

You’re the one who won’t even bother trying to learn about the religion. I already heard all the objections from atheists. And I heard plenty of objections from other religions. It’s not blind if I have already logically countered all these arguments.

And I’m willing to accept other sects as valid as long as they preach the same gospel that I do: Jesus Christ lived a perfect life, died as the perfect sacrifice for our sins, and resurrected on the 3rd day. If you put Christ as the center of your life, you are saved. They might differ entirely on how they worship, but they at least know that truth.

elaborate.

You’re creating a bubble around your own beliefs. It doesn’t seem like you’re critically thinking about any of your beliefs based on your definition.

if we arent his children, he shouldnt throw us into hell.

But if we are his children, He has every right to?

and god obviously does consider those things. because a kid who was born to a tribe that never heard of christianity will definitely go to hell because he dared to be born there, while the typical child of a christian family already won the game the day he was born.

No I’m saying He doesn’t consider privilege.

And some Christians are only nominal Christians. Just because they were born into a Christian family does not mean they are saved.

but your god could be different. if he couldnt, thats a limitation isnt it? and god has also shown to change, hell, even the correct religion changed.

No He can’t be different. It is a limitation, but not a limit on his power. It is a limit based on his character. He can’t act contrary to his character, which is complex and unchanging just like your definition of morality.

yeah, because killing never started off as an absolute sin, then changed to being completely justified depending on context. unless you are saying that is not a change, but some sort of specific rule that always existed inside the seemingly simple statement.

I’m confused. Where are you getting this from?

just a convenient story you tell yourself so you dont have to put much emphasis on the rules of the old testament and disregard it whenever its comfortable. also, when you can interpret what your religion says is good and bad, then even if what he said didnt change, it is very vague, leaving us with dire consequences if we interpret wrong.

It’s not vague if you read your Bible.

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