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Christianity
Posted 1/3/12 , edited 1/3/12

alupihan45 wrote:


DomFortress wrote:



1)I never said anything like "determination of once karma". Please retract you false claim.

2)There's no Christian concept of "creation" in Hinduism, when reincarnation is an endless cycle of both creation and destruction. Therefore there's no beginning nor end, when the end of a cycle signals the beginning of another; the Pralaya begins where Manvantara ends, and vice-versa.

I told you before that you can't fully perceive nor understand Hinduism through your Christian bias, but you just wouldn't listen due to your arrogance as how you demonstrated below:


well, you said this: "If anything, a real case study of how karma works is the natural science of fetal origin. With mounting evidences strongly indicate how human learning and socializing processes begins before birth, through their immediate hosts' physical, social, and cultural environments" anyway, if that is not what you meant then i retract what i have said.

I know Hinduism. One of my friend is also a Hindi. I do not know the whole story of Asura and their other gods but I researched their "afterlife concept". I am not interpreting anything here. What would I gain from it?



DomFortress
You're not so "special", when your fear of the consequential and "eternal punishment" had made yourself a slave of your desire and passion for life. AKA a pleasure hog; your reason is a slave for your passion.


dude, how did i sound arrogant by saying my case is special, unique or rare? so what if i fear the eternal punishment (it may not be real but i'm playing on the safe side because to not believe is more harmful in the end) and try to live with my desire and passion for life? What is wrong if i try to be a citizen on the world as a Christian?


DomFortress
This is how to live the biblical way literally for a year, and not becoming insane by not believing God. The analysis: it's just wacky, silly, and bat-shit crazy.

A.J. Jacobs: The Year of Living Biblically
The Year of Living Biblically answers the question: What if a modern-day American followed every single rule in the Bible as literally as possible. Not just the famous rules - the Ten Commandments and Love Thy Neighbor (though certainly those). But the hundreds of oft-ignored ones: don't wear clothes of mixed fibers. Grow your beard. Stone adulterers. A.J. Jacobs' experiment is surprising, informative, timely and funny. It is both irreverent and reverent. It seeks to discover what's good in the Bible and what is maybe not so relevant to 21st century life. And it will make you see the Good Book with new eyes. Thou shalt not put it down.


dom, because of what you posted it really shows how ignorant of you about Christianity. Because of your bias ideas, you fail to understand what it really means to be a Christian...FYI, that is one of the task that Jesus Christ did here on earth. He ratified the old commandment and renew the covenant. If we follow everything what was written in the Bible, Christians would not eat pork as it is forbidden in the old commandment. (Jesus Christ lifted all the restriction about food) or we would be like the Muslims who still wear Jalabiyas and sandals, abayas and maharma with kyamar.
Because you failed at understanding the trap that is reincarnation, within the concept of Hinduism. Reincarnation isn't the same as the "afterlife", it is what life is: an endless cycle of suffering through passion, desire, fear, despair, lust, greed, jealousy, and so on and so forth. And if you didn't came to this realization from your previous reincarnation, you'll be reborn again in a different temporal form and re-experience the cycle all over again. No matter who or what you are.

So how in the world can yo misinterpret that fundamental belief? Unless in yourself doing so, you can hold onto your Christian faith while you assimilate what's actually a completely different worldview. That's how arrogant and ignorant your fear of the unknown had made you: meek willed and close-minded.

Moreover, your fear of an eternal punishment in hell is the worst kind of rationale for you to believe in the Christian faith. Because it ultimately means that you're too stupid to think and figure out morals and ethics for yourself, while you can only learn through fear conditioning. And not through love, understanding, empathy, nor compassion. And certainly least of all moral reasoning.
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Posted 1/4/12 , edited 1/4/12
isn't suffering negative consequences because of the Devil or disobeying God, basically similar to suffering negative consequences from doing bad actions and getting bad karma?

I think it's clear that Christians generally don't only believe in a punishment after death for sins. I think alot of punishment or suffering from sins occurs during life as well.
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Posted 1/5/12
Just some topics I'd like to address based on what I've read above:

1) The supremacy of the Catholic Church over other denominations
2) How God uses the Church for the purpose of conversion
3) The reasons one should believe in God through the Christian faith

Dogmatically speaking, the Catholic Church is superior to all other denominations because it is Holy, Apostolic, Catholic and Roman: Holy because of the action of the Holy Spirit preserving the truth of its doctrine and making its sacraments effective; Apostolic because it is governed by the successors of the Apostles; Catholic because its doctrine is approved by a wide range of people around the world, and Roman because its head, the Bishop of Rome, holds the office and the power of St. Peter, the head of the apostles. The closest Church to the Catholic Church is the Orthodox Church, which does not have the fullness of truth due to the fact that its doctrine (though mostly correct) contains a few errors and that it is in schism with the Bishop of Rome. Protestant churches are farthest removed from the Truth because their doctrines contain many errors, sacraments (save for baptism, which anyone using the right words with the correct intention may perform) are ineffective, their ministers are not apostolic, (at the time of their founding) their doctrines were accepted only by a small group of people instead of worldwide, and they are in schism with the Bishop of Rome.

But, the most compelling reason I can give here why no Protestant Church can form the true Church is because they disagree with the Apostolic and Early Church Fathers, while Catholic and Orthodox doctrine agree with these early successors to the Apostles. Let me just say here that the process of preserving the doctrine of the Church can in no way be compared to a game of telephone for two reasons. The first is that doctrine was not passed down from one person to one person, but to large groups of people. If one or a few people tried to spread another doctrine, the majority would instantly perceive that they were teaching something false and correct them. The truth of this statement can be seen in the use of councils from the Council of Jerusalem (found in The Acts of the Apostles) through the Council of Nicaea (325 A.D.) until modern times with the Second Vatican Council (1962 A.D.). The second is that we have many early sources of Christian doctrine such as the Didache (1st century A.D.), Apostles' Creed (1st century A.D.) and the writings of the Apostolic Fathers (1st and 2nd Century A.D.) who either knew the Apostles or those whom the Apostles taught. This would make it possible to compare modern doctrine with those who wrote shortly after the apostles. You'll find that Protestant churches will not agree with everything they wrote while Catholics and Orthodox will. (Though, Protestant Churches even have difficulty reconciling some of their doctrines with the entirety of Scripture; e.g. Lutherans almost seem to wish that the Epistle of James didn't exist, and the fact that Protestants have cut certain books from the canon.) Also, one finds the concept of the Apostles having everything right and then the very same people whom they themselves taught messing it up rather absurd.

(Sorry if I seem too harsh on Protestants. Let me state here that some of my best friends are Protestant, and that all Christians are united in the Mystical Body of Christ through baptism and have the right to hope in salvation through Christ Jesus. I just have issues with their doctrine.)

Longfenglim asked interesting questions about why God does not simply use His power to make Himself more easy to perceive, specifically through science, and why doesn’t He convert everyone with His Omnipotence. The reason is quite simply that He prefers to use the most natural ways possible to convert people. Due to His respect for our free will, he usually does not perform a great miracle in order to convert without the request of the unbeliever in question or a member of Christ’s Church. Even such a dramatic conversion as St. Paul’s would not have occurred without the prayers of the Church, whom Christ taught “to pray for those who persecute you.”

But with so many miracles, even as great as The Miracle of the Sun at Fatima, isn’t it a wonder that so many go unconverted? The reason is that the grace is necessary to convert. No matter what the miracle or how excellent the logic of one’s argument, it will bear no fruit without God’s grace. Remember how some of the Jews wished to kill Lazarus because many people were coming to believe in Jesus because of him? The resurrection of a man who had been dead for four days, rather than inspiring faith in these people, only drove them to greater enmity! I also remember the story of an atheistic doctor traveling to Lourdes, France with an incurable patient, who said that he would convert if the patient came out of the miraculous fountain cured. Well, the cure happened, and it took several days of reflection before he finally converted despite seeing the power of God before his very eyes! To sum everything up, God does convert everyone who comes to believe in Him, but he uses the Church as His instrument in salvation. So, for conversions, prayer is of the first importance, that believers faithfully practice the faith is of the second (otherwise, we shall appear as hypocrites to non-believers), and lastly comes keeping up a dialogue with them.

The reasons one ought to practice Christianity over other religions are firstly, that it is true and secondly, that Man was created to know, love, and serve God in this life and the next. For now, I’ll only deal with the second part, because answering the first would make this post way too long. But, please feel free to post why you believe Christianity must be false, and I’ll refute it.

The fact that one may fall into hell (to use the Japanese idiom ) is not the primary reason to believe in God. The primary reason lies in the fact that unbelief will cause us to be unhappy because we have not performed the role for which we have been created, in which lies our happiness. Reasonable people do things because they believe the accomplishment of these activities will cause them to be happy. So, you find people pursuing riches, knowledge, pleasure, commodities essential for life, leisure, power, etc. However, a Christian says that true happiness is only found in knowing, loving, and serving God. Everything besides God is a lesser good. This is even to the extent that if one were starving, it would be better to continue to starve than steal food to satisfy one’s hunger. Stealing is a sin, hence it draws us away from God, our true happiness. Those pursuing anything less than God will find themselves unhappy, because none of the things above will satisfy them.
Posted 1/5/12 , edited 1/5/12

Canute wrote:

Just some topics I'd like to address based on what I've read above:

1) The supremacy of the Catholic Church over other denominations
2) How God uses the Church for the purpose of conversion
3) The reasons one should believe in God through the Christian faith

Dogmatically speaking, the Catholic Church is superior to all other denominations because it is Holy, Apostolic, Catholic and Roman: Holy because of the action of the Holy Spirit preserving the truth of its doctrine and making its sacraments effective; Apostolic because it is governed by the successors of the Apostles; Catholic because its doctrine is approved by a wide range of people around the world, and Roman because its head, the Bishop of Rome, holds the office and the power of St. Peter, the head of the apostles. The closest Church to the Catholic Church is the Orthodox Church, which does not have the fullness of truth due to the fact that its doctrine (though mostly correct) contains a few errors and that it is in schism with the Bishop of Rome. Protestant churches are farthest removed from the Truth because their doctrines contain many errors, sacraments (save for baptism, which anyone using the right words with the correct intention may perform) are ineffective, their ministers are not apostolic, (at the time of their founding) their doctrines were accepted only by a small group of people instead of worldwide, and they are in schism with the Bishop of Rome.

But, the most compelling reason I can give here why no Protestant Church can form the true Church is because they disagree with the Apostolic and Early Church Fathers, while Catholic and Orthodox doctrine agree with these early successors to the Apostles. Let me just say here that the process of preserving the doctrine of the Church can in no way be compared to a game of telephone for two reasons. The first is that doctrine was not passed down from one person to one person, but to large groups of people. If one or a few people tried to spread another doctrine, the majority would instantly perceive that they were teaching something false and correct them. The truth of this statement can be seen in the use of councils from the Council of Jerusalem (found in The Acts of the Apostles) through the Council of Nicaea (325 A.D.) until modern times with the Second Vatican Council (1962 A.D.). The second is that we have many early sources of Christian doctrine such as the Didache (1st century A.D.), Apostles' Creed (1st century A.D.) and the writings of the Apostolic Fathers (1st and 2nd Century A.D.) who either knew the Apostles or those whom the Apostles taught. This would make it possible to compare modern doctrine with those who wrote shortly after the apostles. You'll find that Protestant churches will not agree with everything they wrote while Catholics and Orthodox will. (Though, Protestant Churches even have difficulty reconciling some of their doctrines with the entirety of Scripture; e.g. Lutherans almost seem to wish that the Epistle of James didn't exist, and the fact that Protestants have cut certain books from the canon.) Also, one finds the concept of the Apostles having everything right and then the very same people whom they themselves taught messing it up rather absurd.

(Sorry if I seem too harsh on Protestants. Let me state here that some of my best friends are Protestant, and that all Christians are united in the Mystical Body of Christ through baptism and have the right to hope in salvation through Christ Jesus. I just have issues with their doctrine.)

Longfenglim asked interesting questions about why God does not simply use His power to make Himself more easy to perceive, specifically through science, and why doesn’t He convert everyone with His Omnipotence. The reason is quite simply that He prefers to use the most natural ways possible to convert people. Due to His respect for our free will, he usually does not perform a great miracle in order to convert without the request of the unbeliever in question or a member of Christ’s Church. Even such a dramatic conversion as St. Paul’s would not have occurred without the prayers of the Church, whom Christ taught “to pray for those who persecute you.”

But with so many miracles, even as great as The Miracle of the Sun at Fatima, isn’t it a wonder that so many go unconverted? The reason is that the grace is necessary to convert. No matter what the miracle or how excellent the logic of one’s argument, it will bear no fruit without God’s grace. Remember how some of the Jews wished to kill Lazarus because many people were coming to believe in Jesus because of him? The resurrection of a man who had been dead for four days, rather than inspiring faith in these people, only drove them to greater enmity! I also remember the story of an atheistic doctor traveling to Lourdes, France with an incurable patient, who said that he would convert if the patient came out of the miraculous fountain cured. Well, the cure happened, and it took several days of reflection before he finally converted despite seeing the power of God before his very eyes! To sum everything up, God does convert everyone who comes to believe in Him, but he uses the Church as His instrument in salvation. So, for conversions, prayer is of the first importance, that believers faithfully practice the faith is of the second (otherwise, we shall appear as hypocrites to non-believers), and lastly comes keeping up a dialogue with them.

The reasons one ought to practice Christianity over other religions are firstly, that it is true and secondly, that Man was created to know, love, and serve God in this life and the next. For now, I’ll only deal with the second part, because answering the first would make this post way too long. But, please feel free to post why you believe Christianity must be false, and I’ll refute it.

The fact that one may fall into hell (to use the Japanese idiom ) is not the primary reason to believe in God. The primary reason lies in the fact that unbelief will cause us to be unhappy because we have not performed the role for which we have been created, in which lies our happiness. Reasonable people do things because they believe the accomplishment of these activities will cause them to be happy. So, you find people pursuing riches, knowledge, pleasure, commodities essential for life, leisure, power, etc. However, a Christian says that true happiness is only found in knowing, loving, and serving God. Everything besides God is a lesser good. This is even to the extent that if one were starving, it would be better to continue to starve than steal food to satisfy one’s hunger. Stealing is a sin, hence it draws us away from God, our true happiness. Those pursuing anything less than God will find themselves unhappy, because none of the things above will satisfy them.
Actually, that's not rational people would do, regardless of their faiths. Because the fact is humans are irrational, when our brains can get very addictive to an "if, then maybe" situation. This is proven by studying the human behavioral addiction mechanic of dopamine.

Dopamine Jackpot! Sapolsky on the Science of Pleasure
Robert Sapolsky, professor of biology and neurology at Stanford University, compares dopamine levels in monkeys and humans. Sapolsky argues that in both, "Dopamine is not about pleasure, it's about the anticipation of pleasure. It's about the pursuit of happiness." Unlike monkeys however, humans "keep those dopamine levels up for decades and decades waiting for the reward."

Brugger and his colleague, Christine Mohr, gave subjects L-DOPA. L-DOPA's a drug, as you know, given for treating Parkinson's disease, which is related to a decrease in dopamine. L-DOPA increases dopamine. An increase of dopamine caused subjects to see more patterns than those that did not receive the dopamine. So dopamine appears to be the drug associated with patternicity. In fact, neuroleptic drugs that are used to eliminate psychotic behavior, things like paranoia, delusions and hallucinations, these are patternicities. They're incorrect patterns. They're false positives. They're Type I errors. And if you give them drugs that are dopamine antagonists, they go away. That is, you decrease the amount of dopamine, and their tendency to see patterns like that decreases. On the other hand, amphetamines like cocaine are dopamine agonists. They increase the amount of dopamine. So you're more likely to feel in a euphoric state, creativity, find more patterns.

In fact, I saw Robin Williams recently talk about how he thought he was much funnier when he was doing cocaine, when he had that issue, than now. So perhaps more dopamine is related to more creativity. Dopamine, I think, changes our signal-to-noise ratio. That is, how accurate we are in finding patterns. If it's too low, you're more likely to make too many Type II errors. You miss the real patterns. You don't want to be too skeptical. If you're too skeptical, you'll miss the really interesting good ideas. Just right, you're creative, and yet you don't fall for too much baloney. Too high and maybe you see patterns everywhere. Every time somebody looks at you, you think people are staring at you. You think people are talking about you. And if you go too far on that, that's just simply labeled as madness. It's a distinction perhaps we might make between two Nobel laureates, Richard Feynman and John Nash. One sees maybe just the right number of patterns to win a Nobel Prize. The other one also, but maybe too many patterns. And we then call that schizophrenia.

.... Now I said back in our little thought experiment, you're a hominid walking on the plains of Africa. Is it just the wind or a dangerous predator? What's the difference between those? Well, the wind is inanimate; the dangerous predator is an intentional agent. And I call this process agenticity. That is the tendency to infuse patterns with meaning, intention and agency, often invisible beings from the top down. This is an idea that we got from a fellow TEDster here, Dan Dennett, who talked about taking the intentional stance.

So it's a type of that expanded to explain, I think, a lot of different things: souls, spirits, ghosts, gods, demons, angels, aliens, intelligent designers, government conspiracists and all manner of invisible agents with power and intention, are believed to haunt our world and control our lives. I think it's the basis of animism and polytheism and monotheism. It's the belief that aliens are somehow more advanced than us, more moral than us, and the narratives always are that they're coming here to save us and rescue us from on high. The intelligent designer's always portrayed as this super intelligent, moral being that comes down to design life. Even the idea that government can rescue us -- that's no longer the wave of the future, but that is, I think, a type of agenticity: projecting somebody up there, big and powerful, will come rescue us.
---- from "Michael Shermer: The pattern behind self-deception"
So if that's what you meant by "to know, love, and serve God in this life and the next", please check yourself at the nearest addiction clinic at your leisure. Because you're just "naturally" high on your religious cultural conditioning.


BTW, I don't "believe" when I practice scientific rigors and philosophy. According to Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, free-will is "a philosophical term of art for a particular sort of capacity of rational agents to choose a course of action from among various alternatives".(citation). Therefore I'm not asking for miracles, when I'm asking God Himself to come and explain in front of everyone, about His categorical moral imperative behind all the biblical rape, slavery, torture, and even genocide that were done by His followers, all proclaimed so that "His will be done"(that this, if He truly respects His own free-will). All the while He shouldn't sound like just another jealous, arrogant, and self-righteous bigot. Because I've already got plenty of you folks around, who's all trying to speak on His behaves. Otherwise I can always settle for the social psychological theory called "death anxiety/terror management".

Sheldon Solomon - Ernest Becker & The Denial of Death
Terror Management Theory (TMT) was proposed in 1986 by social psychologists Jeff Greenberg, Tom Pyszczynski, and Sheldon Solomon. The theory was inspired by the writings of cultural anthropologist, Ernest Becker, and was initiated by two relatively simple questions: Why do people have such a great need to feel good about themselves?; and Why do people have so much trouble getting along with those different from themselves?

The basic gist of the theory is that humans are motivated to quell the potential for terror inherent in the human awareness of vulnerability and mortality by investing in cultural belief systems (or worldviews) that imbue life with meaning, and the individuals who subscribe to them with significance (or self-esteem). Since its inception, the theory has generated empirical research into not just the nature of self-esteem motivation and prejudice, but also a host of other forms of human social behavior. To date, over 300 studies conducted in over a dozen countries have explored such topics as aggression, stereotyping, needs for structure and meaning, depression and psychopathology (e.g., phobias), political preferences, creativity, sexuality and attraction, romantic and interpersonal attachment, self-awareness, unconscious cognition, martyrdom, religion, group identification, disgust, human-nature relations, physical health, risk taking, and legal judgments.

And no, praying as hard as I can just makes me obsessed and addicted with praying. Due to the neurological mechanism of dopamine in the brain during an "if, then maybe" pattern of self-deception.
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Posted 1/6/12

DomFortress wrote:


i know that reincarnation that it is a continous cycle and there is no afterlife in reincarnation. i rechecked my older post and never had i said that reincarnation is an afterlife.

pfft. let me ask you this. Which is safer? to believe in eternal punishment in the afterlife or not? If you don't believe and eternal punishment, which could turn out to be real, doesn't exist, no harm done. If you don't believe and eternal punishment exist, you are screwed.

and for once, don't be a hypocrite. you don't fear the unknown? pft. everybody fears the unknown, dude. You've got to be crazy if you don't fear the unknown.

you said: Moreover, your fear of an eternal punishment in hell is the worst kind of rationale for you to believe in the Christian faith. Because it ultimately means that you're too stupid to think and figure out morals and ethics for yourself, while you can only learn through fear conditioning. And not through love, understanding, empathy, nor compassion. And certainly least of all moral reasoning

You've got to be kidding me. Where in the world did you pick this up?
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Posted 1/6/12
There is so much more to religion than feeling! Sooner or later spiritual dryness comes. One does not need x level of dopamine to be Christian. Certain saints like St. Joseph of Cupertino even felt spiritual dryness for whole years, and Mother Teresa’s dark night of the soul is well known. Grace is not a feeling but the life of God. And grace cooperates with reason to give birth to faith.

It does not take an irrational person to believe in Christianity. The apostles were completely rational: the person whom they thought was the Messiah died; therefore, he must not be the Messiah. This being the case, they should hide from the wrath of the Sanhedrin and hopefully gain back their simple lives as fishermen. Three days later, Jesus appeared to them saying that He was both truly the Messiah and God and that they should spread the Gospel to all nations and baptize people in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit. If Jesus were not God, then he could not have risen from the dead. And since it is our duty to serve God, we should obey him. And so the apostles did just as Jesus told them.

But, perhaps this is not the best example. The apostles were his followers after all. Perhaps these simple fishermen concocted some grand conspiracy whose purpose was to beguile the masses with the marvel of a man rising from the dead—these men whose only goal in life had been to be faithful Jews and to support their families. Or perhaps they went crazy. But before anyone makes an assertion which everyone can level at just about anyone else with only the slightest justification, please show some concrete proof that the apostles were insane.

Let us take the case of St. Paul instead. Here's a person who greatly desired to eradicate Christianity. He oversaw the martyrdom of the St. Stephen. From there, he throws some of the disciples in prison. Then, he gains documents giving him the right to imprison Christians in Damascus. What happens next? Surely, he does the same to Christians in Damascus as he did to those in Jerusalem! That zealous adherent of the True Faith, Judaism! No! After he hearing a voice on high and becoming blinded, he not only converts to Christianity but even becomes its greatest convert maker!

Another conspiracy! Another case for the asylum! Rather, it seems like atheists are either too high on dopamine and seeing conspiracies or too low on it and labeling all religious movements as being based in insanity or human constructs. Indeed, is not making up a religion for the sake of making one feel less vulnerable another form of insanity? And didn't we see the end result of such things in the ancient world? Widespread atheism's the end result! Toward the end of the Roman Republican period, the Greeks universally scoffed at religion, and held Romans in contempt for being so “superstitious.” Only the philosophers held on to some idea of a god, and this god to them was more of a supreme architect or the finger knocking over the first domino. Not really inspiring is it?

Then, by the time the Apostles starting preaching, the Romans were not much better off. Some believed in the idea of a supreme architect, others preferred the idea of there not being an afterlife compared to the prospect of hell awaiting them, and the main concern of the rest was either the necessities of life, pleasure or power. Very few truly believed in the traditional paganism except as a way to control the masses with festivals. (As a classically educated individual, Marx was not only looking at Christianity when he said: “Religion is the opium of the people.” In the most decadent years of the Roman Empire, there were well over two hundred pagan holidays! Holidays where people took off from work! Could you imagine only working for one-third of the year?) How do you think Christianity originally looked to the Greeks and the Romans? As another religion replete with fables! What do you think made these skeptical, urbane Greeks believe? Believe a Pharisee from some backwater Roman province with an absurd yarn? The only answer possible is that they saw the very power of God before their eyes.


BTW, I don't "believe" when I practice scientific rigors and philosophy. According to Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy, free-will is "a philosophical term of art for a particular sort of capacity of rational agents to choose a course of action from among various alternatives".(citation). Therefore I'm not asking for miracles, when I'm asking God Himself to come and explain in front of everyone, about His categorical moral imperative behind all the biblical rape, slavery, torture, and even genocide that were done by His followers, all proclaimed so that "His will be done"(that this, if He truly respects His own free-will). All the while He shouldn't sound like just another jealous, arrogant, and self-righteous bigot.


Having read the Old Testament, I cannot recall any passage where God orders people to rape or to torture anyone. As a matter of fact, the only rapes I can recall are the rape of Dinah in the Book of Genesis and that poor woman at the end of the Book of Judges. In either case God had nothing to do with it. The first case ended with the annihilation of the rapist's clan. In the second, some townsmen were demanding to have carnal knowledge with a guest, and the guest was the one who threw his concubine out of the house. What happens afterward? The other tribes of Israel almost wipe out the Benjaminites in order to purge this defilement from the land. n.b. God gave no orders for either of these rapes to be committed.

Though the Israelites had slaves, God never told them that they should obtain slaves for themselves. Rather, he made rules governing their treatment and even insisted that they be freed on Jubilee years: “Count off seven sabbath years—seven times seven years—so that the seven sabbath years amount to a period of forty-nine years. Then have the trumpet sounded everywhere on the tenth day of the seventh month; on the Day of Atonement sound the trumpet throughout your land. Consecrate the fiftieth year and proclaim liberty throughout the land to all its inhabitants.” (Leviticus 25: 8-10) In the same chapter, God forbids Israelites from enslaving one another. And can we forget that the nation the Lord chose to redeem was a nation of slaves?

With God, the case is that sin must be punished or atoned for. If one does not ask for mercy, one will receive God's justice. The people whom God ordered the Israelites to wipe out practiced many abominations such as human sacrifice and threatened to turn the Israelites to the worship of other gods. So, God told the Israelites to wipe out the Canaanites for those reasons. And what happens later in the Bible? The Canaanites who were not wiped out perverted the Israelites with their abominable religious practices, like slaying first-born children to idols, and turned them away from worshiping God. And how defensible is a religious culture which offers its children as holocausts?

But, here's a question which I'd like to ask any atheist: how do you explain the Miracle of the Sun at Fatima? How do you explain tens of thousands of people from die-hard Communists to the lukewarm to fervent believers all reporting the same phenomena which has not been seen since and which three little children predicted? Three little children who said that St. Mary would show them a miracle on that very day? And I don't only want an explanation of the celestial phenomena: after weeks of rain and the bystanders being soaked to skin, how did the environs and the bystanders themselves instantly become dry? Here's the wikipedia article: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miracle_of_the_Sun
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Posted 1/6/12

longfenglim wrote:

longfenglim

How can you say that you are a Protestant, that is, a child of the Reformation, and still say that the Patriarchs and Popes of the other Apostolic Churches are true? And, even then, which of these 'Apostolic Churches' is true? All this by and by- you claim that the Church could be perverted, so long as the central message of Christ's Salvation is protected, yet, everything else can be changed for the time, so long as Jesus approves. How can you say that this is protected? The Bible has been compiled long after Christ's death, you must acknowledge that historic tibit of information, under the auspices of the Roman Emperor, meaning, what you have now of 'Christ's Teaching' may well be the work of a Roman Propagandist within the Christian Community, or that the books expulged contains Christ's true teaching. But, say that it is correct, say that the Bible isn't some artifical creation, you say that moral teachings and Christian living may be changed, so long as it is Christian, and it is moral, this is ridiculous and fallacious, how can you change moral teachings and Christian living without actually changing the definition of 'moral' and 'Christian'? Both are dependant upon the other to give it its definition, and, to change the definition of one, you must, invaribly, change the other.


well, at least, I'm a protestant for now. That is the truth but I'm currently attending Catholic studies. Before we were talking about why the Christians are so divided when it comes to sect. I just found the solution by asking who founded their church. anyway, that is another topic.

yeah. i know that the Bible is a compilation of writings from and by the Catholics.

but let me break down this to you:
1. The words of Jesus cannot be perverted and must not be perverted. If Jesus said he is the Son of God. No one can and should change that. Theology-wise, the Catholics didn't change a thing. THe protestants, however, changed a lot of things.

2. Yes it was compiled after Jesus death (70 AD, if i got it right) but what was written wasn't revealed in an instant just like that. It was passed on through oral transmission and tradition.

3. Emperor Constantine, because of the fighting among churches and for the reason to have a single and clear doctrine, proposed the canonization of the Bible. (i bet you already know that) However, during the canonization, it was the pope and his council who compiled the Bible.


While Constantine wanted a unified church after the council for political reasons, he did not force the Homoousian view of Christ's nature on the council, nor commission a Bible at the council that omitted books he did not approve of, although he did later commission Bibles. In fact, Constantine had little theological understanding of the issues at stake, and did not particularly care which view of Christ's nature prevailed so long as it resulted in a unified church.[62] This can be seen in his initial acceptance of the Homoousian view of Christ's nature, only to abandon the belief several years later for political reasons; under the influence of Eusebius of Nicomedia and others.[62]


4. There are some parts of Christian living that can be change to cope up with the modern living. DomFortress already mocked my faith because he thought we still have beards, stoning adulterers to death etc.

If the Church doesn't change a thing, our women are not allowed to go to church without veils. They are not allowed to wear skimpy clothes. Men should circumcised etc.

We would look ridiculous in the present day if we didn't change some christian living.

5. Also, we would still be burning people at stake because they would be accused of witchcraft or sorcery.


longfenglim

First off, you make so many errors, that this statement is laughable- Communism, at least, in the Marxian sense, is compatible with democracy, and, indeed, Democracy is necessary in a Communist Society. There is no contridiction between these two ideas. Then, you ask if I think that Philosophers are inferior to mathematicians- hardly compatible in that they are studying different fields, and, thus, there is no inferiority or superiority. You can't compare a scientists and his achievements to a musician or an artist, they are part of different fields. But, yes, I do think that my idea is superior in that they are better defended than yours. Then you ceased making sense, so, I should probably repeat what I said as lucidly as possible- being Christian entials superiority, as the idea of being superior is embodied within the idea of being a Christian to a Christian.


communism is compatible with democracy? you've got to be kidding me. Democracy may be necessary but it is forbidden. 20 million, more or less, died in Russia and in China. And there is no contradiction? OMG!

about the philosophers and mathematicians, you say it's different because you categorize their field but you forgot all were thinkers and thinkers have an idea. You can still compare them dude. You can compare everything to each other.


longfenglim

I agree, but I was talking about morals- why shouldn't we have morals without the baggage of religion? Look up the Euthyphro Problem- is something moral because it is loved by God, or is it loved by God because it is moral? It can't be the former, because God's love is abitrary, and based upon God present feelings- you may try to argue that 'God doesn't change', but this passage says otherwise:’And when the LORD smelled the pleasing aroma, the LORD said in his heart,“I will never again curse the ground because of man, for the intention of man’s heart is evil from his youth. Neither will I ever again strike down every living creature as I have done..."'(Gen. 8:21), but, if it is moral laws, then it must come from outside of God, and thus, it is good, in and of itself, and not because it has been choosen by God to love at one moment. Having shown that it is not necessary to have a God to have morals, and thus, it is not necessary to have God, an unproven, to be a morally upright person, it is not necessary that religion, founded upon a belief in the unproven, to exist, becuase Altruism can exist outside of Religion. But, if you think there is a greater purpose to religion than its morals and the altruism it provides, what is that purpose it? To get closer to your creator? Why, can not our creator be more readily percieved with the lens of science? Its processes more readily and more accurately understood than by blind faith in a book made of human hands? You compare religion to nationality, which is false in two ways, Nationality is a contruct based upon Geographic location and citizenship to a Country, and nothing else- there is no unified way to be an 'American' or a 'Chinese' because 'American' and 'Chinese' are not real, there is no such thing as an 'American' and a 'Chinese', they are just the same species of people, who have chanced to be born under a different government. A Chinese may come to America to be a citizen, and he is no longer a 'Chinese', but an 'American', and an 'American' may move to China to be a 'Chinese', it is simply putting yourself under the protection of a different government.



well, i just realizing you just want morals and no religion. Then go on. Other people can live with that. You are right to say that some moral codes can live outside religion but YOU CANNOT STRIP GOD from religion. Religion means "to tie again" and it's sole purpose is to reconnect with God. And God is not a thing or any being that can be seen with a lens. The only image we have of God is Jesus Christ (according to Christians of course).

This, in my religious perspective and I think other religion will say this also, I say that the world cannot live a single minute without God. Live with or without moral code but the world cannot live without God. All equations in the world are guided by God. Ever wonder why the 1+1=2 today is still 1+1=2 tomorrow and never will it be 1+1=3? If things happen randomly, maybe tomorrow the equation would be different but so far, for x number of years, the equation is still the same.

and still, dude. If you are not in a religion, you cannot tell us what is unnecessary. Maybe if you are in a religion with enough knowledge of your theology and doctrine, i will listen to you but you are not. So don't tell us what is unnecessary when it comes to religion. That's the whole point of the american-chinese analogy.



longfenglim

How do you know it is God and Jesus who have been good to you? By faith, blind faith, that attributes any good and any delusion to the nearest God avaliable. A Pagan may say the same, that Woden and Thunor has been good to them, and have sent them the goodness of life, Woden has sacrificed his eyes and hung himself on the tree for nine days on humanity's behalf, though he needn't. Jupiter may strike us all dead, but his love and mercy is what prevents him. Vishnu have came upon the earth in mortal garbs many times to save the world, in his many avatars. These Gods do not need us, in fact, most of them can live very happily without us, but they love us all the same.

You then rehash some of William Paley's argument in Natural Theology, being this:


It was born of imperfect science, that sees things as one machine in perfect order, when, in truth, the body is not perfect, it is filled with unneccessary things, dangerous things, prone to infirmy and disease, to aging and to death, it isn't perfect, it is throughly imperfect. Science has shown us that it only seems perfect to a such unlearned in science, because the evolutionary process creates, by the necessity, the conditions that seems most adapted to the enviorons. This is a whole different debate, which you are already tied up with, and which I have no further contribution.


First, if you work at Coca Cola, who will pay your salary and give you incentive? It will not be McDonald or any other corporation or company. It will be Coca Cola. Likewise with religion. I pray to God. God will answer my prayer. Do you think (for the sake of arguement) that is Woden and Thunor does exist, they will answer my prayer to God? Of course not. They will punish me, if they are the real god. Do Woden and Thunor punish me now? No.

You know why does the three Abrahamic religion believes in God-the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? The history of the Jew is our basis. The jews becomes evil, God exiled them. The jews ask for forgiveness from God, God returned them to Israel.

about William Paley, yeah. It was his idea (though I thought it was Benjamin Franklin). Still, natural theology gives us the idea that there is someone out there guiding us.

About the imperfection of the body, well your concept of perfection is a non decaying immortal body. (as for me, i prefer death for this world gives a lot of shit than cakes) You failed to see how magnificently the body system works to sustain life. Tell me a part of the body that is not important and I'll make a new thread praising you.


longfenglim
Woden is Anglo-Saxon, not Norse. But that is no proof to their falseness or their trueness. God did not protect his Churches from the burnings by the Barbarians, Atilla plundered many a churches, before dying the hero's death, completely drunk in the arms of a beautiful woman, the Norwegians and the Danes destroyed many Churches and dedicated many altars to heathenry, and lived comfortably without God's wrath. Why, there are amongst us many Atheists who have mocked God and Christ, who have blasphemed the Lord, and still there is no wrath upon them. The argument is bullshit. But, you say that it has spread the world over, and that is proof enough, because it has been able to convert many people- and that it is the largest organisation. The Mahometan Religion is the largest and fastest growing, with the most converts, yet, does that make it more true than Christianity? And Christianity would be much Smaller without the fastest growing and largest sect, the Romish Church, which you disclaimed, does that make it any more true than the rest? This is not a very good standard, as God and Jesus not only doesn't protect their place of worship, as the Pagan idols, but they also don't grow as fast nor are as large as 'false religions'.


i stand corrected then. All this time i thought Woden and Odin were the same since the Wednesday came from Woden's name and all the name of the day from the week is from the Nordic gods. Anyway, if God didn't protected the church during the time of Atilla, there should be no more Christians today. That is all I can. Oh, you were talking about the building-type church.

And I thought the Norwegians and the Danes were the soldiers of the Crusades. hmm...

Take note, my friend, that part of the life of the early Christians, heck even today, is persecution. When people persecute us. It was not them doing harm to us. It was God who is giving us the glory of dying because of our faith.

And no, Islam is the second largest religion. After the Arab Spring, all of us Christians here in Arab countries are afraid that there would be another religious war (like what is happening in egypt. They are burning Christian churches and killing Christians). Like in LIbya. Gaddaffi made Islam a state religion and no other libyans should practice any other religion or they shall be put to prison (you are lucky if you are put in prison during the time of Gaddafi. Usually, people just disapper). Now, there is no dictator and the some libyans are starting to go back to Christianity (there were a lot of Christians here before Gaddaffi rose to power).

And yeah, it's not about the size and number of converts that makes the church authentic (i thought i mentioned you the Apostolic Churches already. Why are we going back?). However, our history, the Christians shows how many eras of persecutions that should have eradicated our faith but not of this persecution prevailed. Instead, we grow bigger.

May I quote this: Acts 5:33-39



Islam came and spread their religion with fire and sword. The church was protected by the Crusades (Islam already invaded Spain that time and they were in present day Turkey that time). Islam failed to eradicate us (even God's chosen people- the jews). Napoleon (though I love this megalomaniac) with his revolution "Liberta" failed to eradicate the Christians.

You see, if our faith is of man's origin, we should had failed during the death of Jesus or the death of the Apostles. But now, 2000 years pass, Christianity spreads on all corners of the world.


longfenglim
So Christianity is not for those who love evil, yet, historically, why do some of the most evil people belong to Christianity? Did not the Crusade involve the murder and cannibalization of Mahometans, did not the church sponsor Pogroms? Is not the Ugandan Lord Resistance Army Christian? Evil, apperantly, isn't incompatible with Christianity, nor is the lack of Christianity incompatible with a life of Goodness- Spinoza, even by his harsest Critic, acknowledged that he was a moral man, despite his apperant atheism or pantheism. The Lord Buddha and Gandhi were both not very Christian, but were very moral people. So, there is no relationship between being good and being Christian. Now, you say some will accept and believe, and other will not- why not so? If God was truly all powerful, he would save everyone, he would give proof beyond doubt to his existence, but he hasn't. But, pray, what is this 'path to salvation' you speak of? Do tell.


First of all, Crusade is the reason why you are not a muslim. If there is no crusade, everyone is muslims now. The Vatican was against violence but they have no choice but to seek the help of European Kings to stop the massacre of Christians in Middle East. About the Christians invovled in crimes (yes. Even Hitler was catholic). What can I say? All families have a black sheep. And there is nothing I can do about it if they are also Christians. The word of the Lord didn't go in their heart and mind then it's not our fault anymore.

And why is Christianity not compatible with goodness? this is what i like to hear.

About Gandhi and Buddha (though I don't know if Buddha did exist as their are two versions about him) such type of people exist and let me share this



that is my christian explanation to that.

about God being powerful and wanting to save everyone us all- HE did try to save us all. That is why he sent Jesus Christ for the atonement of all human sins. In religious doctrines, for man to be pardoned from the punishment of their sin (which is death) a pure and sinless being should be sacrificed as a replacement to the sinner. God sent this sacrifice and that is Jesus.

The salvation I speak of is not to be gain but to be received. If there is such path then that would be accepting the salvation offered by God through Jesus and start following him. The path is narrow and rarely taken but it leads to a state of eternal peace and happiness in the afterlife (which is another topic)
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alupihan45 wrote:

well, at least, I'm a protestant for now. That is the truth but I'm currently attending Catholic studies. Before we were talking about why the Christians are so divided when it comes to sect. I just found the solution by asking who founded their church. anyway, that is another topic.

yeah. i know that the Bible is a compilation of writings from and by the Catholics.

but let me break down this to you:
1. The words of Jesus cannot be perverted and must not be perverted. If Jesus said he is the Son of God. No one can and should change that. Theology-wise, the Catholics didn't change a thing. THe protestants, however, changed a lot of things.

2. Yes it was compiled after Jesus death (70 AD, if i got it right) but what was written wasn't revealed in an instant just like that. It was passed on through oral transmission and tradition.

3. Emperor Constantine, because of the fighting among churches and for the reason to have a single and clear doctrine, proposed the canonization of the Bible. (i bet you already know that) However, during the canonization, it was the pope and his council who compiled the Bible.



4. There are some parts of Christian living that can be change to cope up with the modern living. DomFortress already mocked my faith because he thought we still have beards, stoning adulterers to death etc.

If the Church doesn't change a thing, our women are not allowed to go to church without veils. They are not allowed to wear skimpy clothes. Men should circumcised etc.

We would look ridiculous in the present day if we didn't change some christian living.

5. Also, we would still be burning people at stake because they would be accused of witchcraft or sorcery.


Let us establish your position before we continue, you are a Protestant, that is, born of the Western European Reformation, with an interest in Catholicism, and you acknowledge the truth of the faith within a Catholic Context, the primacy of the Apostles, specifically St. Peter, the Apostlic succession, and the importance of Tradition, basically in the process of conversion from the Protestant faith to the Catholic one. So let's address your point one by one.

1. The Words of Jesus, let us assume, is written into scripture, is wholly accurately presented, etc. etc. Yet, words are nothing but the meaning we give them, words are just senseless scribbles or sound unless we interpret them to mean something, and that is the basis of language, the essence of words is interpretations of its meaning, when we read, we interpret the words to produce its meaning, and, hence our understanding- do you agree on that point? Thus, the churches, while sharing the same words, differ in how to interpret those words, one church draws one meaning, another draws another meaning, so on. So, the perversion comes from this interpretation, yet, would you not agree that, as with the children passing on their little message, the interpretation change, too, with time?

2. We agree on that historical point, I suppose, and also agree that Mark wrote before Matthew or Luke, who drew from Mark, and from another, unknown source, called 'Q source' by scholars of the field, while John was written outside this tradition.

3. When the Roman emperor intervene to create a single bible, a single agreed upon doctrine, and all that, he elected several bishops, archbishops, and heads of the church all to oversee this work, yet, they work under his auspices. Now, agreeing upon these points, why would they not choose those most favourable to Rome, they were, afterall, Romans, they were educated under Rome, nursed by Rome, even if they were persecuted by Rome, there is still an attachment to her culture and, now, to her Emperor who have given them freedom. If Christianity needed to survive during that age, it would have to accommodate the Romans, and it did so remarkably, that the Emperor's mother was Christian. Why shouldn't the bishops have continued this de-Judification of what was originally a Jewish sect?

4. & 5. Now, let me understand, you say that there are certain portion of Christianity that may be changed to accommodate your convenience, yet which portions? You give stoning adulterers and the prohibition against marring beards as an example, but why? The obvious answer, I think, would be that the Old Testament Laws only applied to Jews, whereas gentiles were offered to follow another law, the Naohide Laws, that is, the seven laws applied unto the Children of Noah, while the nations of Israel was offered the Ten Commandment, the Mitzvah, and the Mishna. At least, as I understand it, thus, they have never applied to gentiles. Vanitas Vanitatum, Omnias Vanitas, you say that Christianity can be made to fit so long as it is within religious context- what is your opinion on Woman Ministers? Isn't that against Paul's prohibition? (Corinthian 14:34-5) Or the fact that Homosexuals are still alive, and not put to death immediately? Paul also condemns that too. (Romans 1:31-2) Do you believe that the Jews were Prophet Murderers and killed Jesus? (Matthew 22:31, Matthew 27:25) I assume you would agree that these have no relevance, despite being scripture, despite coming from the mouth of Christ, or Paul himself. We agree that some of the pillars of the Christian faith is unable to bear the pressure of modernity. Yet, to dismantle this pillar, and dismantle that pillar, and to change the roof, the tiling, to bring the Church up with modern times, is that not changing the church completely? Yet, this may seem like Thesus' Ship on the Surface, where we question whether anything can be the same should we, with time, remove all the planks and woods, and leave nothing of the original but the ship, but this is entirely different, as we change the pillars with different pillars, cast and moulded in a different style, replace the old red shingles with blue ones, put marble where stone was, leaving nothing but the same site. It cannot be said to be the same Church, but one that happened to share the same spot as the old Church, and the same name. Therefore, to reject certain aspect that is not in line with the time, to change something that is scripture for convenience, you have ultimately betrayed the faith completely, by putting your convenience over what is perceived to be what makes your God happy.




alupihan45 wrote:
communism is compatible with democracy? you've got to be kidding me. Democracy may be necessary but it is forbidden. 20 million, more or less, died in Russia and in China. And there is no contradiction? OMG!

about the philosophers and mathematicians, you say it's different because you categorize their field but you forgot all were thinkers and thinkers have an idea. You can still compare them dude. You can compare everything to each other.


Research 'Dictatorship of the Proletarian', to sum it up, it is the Marxist idea that, after the Revolution, the proletarian must set up an interim government to transition them into anarchy, and a combination of Direct Democracy in the Factory and in Politics, that is, a dictatorship of the numerically superior class, acts as this government. The Soviet and all following Revolution followed the Leninist 'Vanguard' model, that is, that the Party acts as a vanguard to lead the workers revolution, and then, lead that government until it can educate the Proletariats and let them have a true Dictatorship of the Proletarian. This obviously didn't work out too well. But, enough of that, this is mere politics, and completely unrelated to the topic at hand. Two separate things, from two separate fields cannot be compared. We do not, say, compare cement to the bus, for example, as the utility of each is devised such that its purpose are, while related, separate, which offers no comparison. Mathematicians study a different branch than the Biologist, they may both use 'ideas', but it remains that they study two different branches, and, as their fields are different, we cannot compare them. You are in error here, you cannot compare all ideas- you may measure out an ideas' effect upon a field, in relation to that field, and all that, and compare that, but it would not be an accurate measurement, because each field use a different system. A Political Economist, we would agree, should not be compared to a Theologian, we should not compare the ideas expressed Mr Marx's Das Kapital to the ideas of St Augustine's Summa Theologia, yet, you see the branches of Science as one, and comparable to each other, when this is not the case. Pray, how may we compare the ideas of Mr Darwin with Mr Newton? We may compare Mr Darwin and Mr Newton in their output of ideas, where Mr Newton does have the greater advantage, and influence, Mr Newton still with the advantage, but, taking to consideration the era which each man lived, and the subject with which each man worked, who is to say that Mr Darwin's discovery was not far harder to achieve, in an area which, by his time, has become exhaustively studied, and, therefore, much harder to make more discoveries, and, thus, should be granted that advantage over Mr Newton? This is what I mean by each field has different system of measuring an idea.


alupihan45 wrote:
well, i just realizing you just want morals and no religion. Then go on. Other people can live with that. You are right to say that some moral codes can live outside religion but YOU CANNOT STRIP GOD from religion. Religion means "to tie again" and it's sole purpose is to reconnect with God. And God is not a thing or any being that can be seen with a lens. The only image we have of God is Jesus Christ (according to Christians of course).

This, in my religious perspective and I think other religion will say this also, I say that the world cannot live a single minute without God. Live with or without moral code but the world cannot live without God. All equations in the world are guided by God. Ever wonder why the 1+1=2 today is still 1+1=2 tomorrow and never will it be 1+1=3? If things happen randomly, maybe tomorrow the equation would be different but so far, for x number of years, the equation is still the same.

and still, dude. If you are not in a religion, you cannot tell us what is unnecessary. Maybe if you are in a religion with enough knowledge of your theology and doctrine, i will listen to you but you are not. So don't tell us what is unnecessary when it comes to religion. That's the whole point of the american-chinese analogy.


You use the phrase 'connect with God', who is a being that 'cannot be seen with lens', and is manifested in the form of Christ? Yet, you haven't provided the nature of this God? He must be seperate from us, if we are able to disconnect from him, yet, that would mean he is not infinite, that is, he is lacking in one of the traditional category that defines God, his ubiquity and omnipresence. Losing this omnipresence, you say that the world is guided by God, and that we cannot live a single minute without him (A contradiction with his lack of omnipresence, but all this by and by), and he makes the world ordered, as proof, you provide the mathematical truth, 1+1=2 and never 3. That is true, in so far as we take 3 to mean the concept of 'three', which is essentially 'three', and can not be anything else. God cannot change it nor make it, if he were to exist, because such truths are contained within the essence of one and two and three, that two is composed of two 'ones' and three of three 'ones', and, so, it is impossible for him to make the value of two 'ones' become three 'ones', an absurdity as the impossible to lift rock paradox, and, even if he were to change it, assuming he can, which is impossible, he must still know of a two and a three that is equal to two 'ones' and three 'ones' respectively, and, as these are ideas, so long as this idea exist, it is still real. God, therefore, is not omnipotent. That leaves God omniscience, which means God must know all his past, present, and future actions, meaning there exist something beyond God, a fate, what the antient North-men called the Norns, who has set to stone all things, making this thing a God of itself, which infringes upon the singularity of God, in addition to rendering God nothing but nature, as he cannot deviate from this path whatsoever, leaving him without sentience, freewill, or anything, which, additionally, implies that God is but a car, and we are but cars, dragged by the train Fate, falling into an unchanging track, and there is nothing, nothing at all. That is the implication of such a God, then, existential nihilism- Nothing exist but to exist, and there is nothing else but that. That last part of your post is the strangest, in that you think that I should profess to a religion, before I criticise yours- that is absurd, in that membership to a religion is not a pre-requisite to knowledge of it, and that knowledge is the only thing necessary in a debate. You tell me that, unless I am in a faith, I have no right to say what is unnecessary to faith- I never said anything was unnecessary to religion, but that religion is itself unnecessary for morality, and that faith depends upon the unproven. I do not say this as a commandment, but as something that is reasoned out- faith is dependent on the unproven, or it cease becomes faith, but knowledge, and, until it becomes knowledge, it is simply guess work patched together and culled from an ancient book, with nothing more to recommend it but that many people agree with this guess work, enough so that people are willing to kill for it.



alupihan45 wrote:
First, if you work at Coca Cola, who will pay your salary and give you incentive? It will not be McDonald or any other corporation or company. It will be Coca Cola. Likewise with religion. I pray to God. God will answer my prayer. Do you think (for the sake of arguement) that is Woden and Thunor does exist, they will answer my prayer to God? Of course not. They will punish me, if they are the real god. Do Woden and Thunor punish me now? No.

You know why does the three Abrahamic religion believes in God-the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob? The history of the Jew is our basis. The jews becomes evil, God exiled them. The jews ask for forgiveness from God, God returned them to Israel.

about William Paley, yeah. It was his idea (though I thought it was Benjamin Franklin). Still, natural theology gives us the idea that there is someone out there guiding us.

About the imperfection of the body, well your concept of perfection is a non decaying immortal body. (as for me, i prefer death for this world gives a lot of shit than cakes) You failed to see how magnificently the body system works to sustain life. Tell me a part of the body that is not important and I'll make a new thread praising you.


First off, had you worship Woden, Thunor, Vishnu, Shiva, or Ra, and good come unto you, you would attribute to whatever God you worship. Dr Dawkin has put it more much better than I ever can:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sf_FdoSft_c
But, then, you pose an interesting question, not for its originality or intelligence, but for the shere absurdity and the universal application of it, had the worshippers of idols and likeness made from stones and trees worship their Gods, would not God have visited his wrath upon them? Has those brought up in the bosoms of Christianity, raised by her milk and suckled upon her teats, had these babes, when they learned to walk and think, left the church and warred against it like the Modern Atheists do, would he not visit his wrath upon them? Yet, the rain still falls upon the heathens and the Christians alike. And still no punishment, divine or otherwise, is visited upon them.

You then try to defend William Paley's argument, when in the face of Science- observe a watch, you would notice now perfectly and smoothly it runs, yet, would you not agree that it would be a mistake to assume all watches of all era were so? Was it not born from the imperfections of its ancestors, through the centuries of improvements and innovations, by different watch makers, to make this new watch which you carry about, either in your waist coat or your wrist? If a man were to say that watches were always so, it would be laughable, as he only observe the now, and finds it perfect, when you ignored that generations that lead up to it. So it is with the human body, our body seems perfect, only because we have had millions of years to adapt and change it through the processes of Evolution. Our body magnificently sustains life because of the processes of evolution, because it has been perfected- but it is not perfect. Vestigial Organs and Vestigial structures exist within the human body, with no purposes what-so-ever, none that the might of science can detect. You may say it is God's mysterious ways, and a proof that infinite God is beyond the weak and feeble science of man, yet, many times were these organs removed, with no negative consequence, and, indeed, improved health. The Wisdom Teeth, for example. In fact, there is a name for this sort of argument- it is called 'Argument from Bad Design', so start the praising.


alupihan45 wrote:

i stand corrected then. All this time i thought Woden and Odin were the same since the Wednesday came from Woden's name and all the name of the day from the week is from the Nordic gods. Anyway, if God didn't protected the church during the time of Atilla, there should be no more Christians today. That is all I can. Oh, you were talking about the building-type church.

And I thought the Norwegians and the Danes were the soldiers of the Crusades. hmm...

Take note, my friend, that part of the life of the early Christians, heck even today, is persecution. When people persecute us. It was not them doing harm to us. It was God who is giving us the glory of dying because of our faith.

And no, Islam is the second largest religion. After the Arab Spring, all of us Christians here in Arab countries are afraid that there would be another religious war (like what is happening in egypt. They are burning Christian churches and killing Christians). Like in LIbya. Gaddaffi made Islam a state religion and no other libyans should practice any other religion or they shall be put to prison (you are lucky if you are put in prison during the time of Gaddafi. Usually, people just disapper). Now, there is no dictator and the some libyans are starting to go back to Christianity (there were a lot of Christians here before Gaddaffi rose to power).

And yeah, it's not about the size and number of converts that makes the church authentic (i thought i mentioned you the Apostolic Churches already. Why are we going back?). However, our history, the Christians shows how many eras of persecutions that should have eradicated our faith but not of this persecution prevailed. Instead, we grow bigger.

May I quote this: Acts 5:33-39



Islam came and spread their religion with fire and sword. The church was protected by the Crusades (Islam already invaded Spain that time and they were in present day Turkey that time). Islam failed to eradicate us (even God's chosen people- the jews). Napoleon (though I love this megalomaniac) with his revolution "Liberta" failed to eradicate the Christians.

You see, if our faith is of man's origin, we should had failed during the death of Jesus or the death of the Apostles. But now, 2000 years pass, Christianity spreads on all corners of the world.


Let's discuss Attila. Attila didn't care to destroy the Christian faith- it was not God's mercy but human apathy that saved Christianity. God didn't preserve Christianity, just as Ahura Mazda didn't preserve Zoroasterism, nor did the Mahdi preserve the Shias through the Sunni persecution. Many religions survived repeated persecution, invasions, attack- most notably, the Jews, yet, it would be insane to assume that all these gods are true- the Buddhist survived the persecution in China, Taoism and Confucianism survived the Cultural Revolution, and, yet, the fervour of the Red Guards and the Schools brainwashing would have been enough to destroy it completely, you would not dare say that Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism is the true faith. The Khmer Rouge murdered the Monks, the Buddhist, and anyone caught practicing Buddhism, they damn well near murdered everyone, yet, Buddhism return with full force to Cambodia, men and women gladly part with what few pennies they have to share with the Monkhood, and this is surely enough to believe Buddhism is the true faith, if we went by the persecution standard, and, behold, it grows amongst them in the west, it grows faster and faster amongst the educated population, surely that is enough to validate the Buddhists. But it stands, God did not preserve his altar of Worship- he never did, and that is no argument against the invalidity of a God. Survival of Persecution does not validate a God either, as many religion has gone through this trial of fire. Growth, as I said, doesn't indicate truth either, as your growth is split amongst your warring branches. Then, you made a couple historical mistake- neither Napoleon, nor the Moslem, wanted to destroy Christianity- the Mahometan religion had a history of tolerating 'People of the Book', and Napoleon made it law that all religion be tolerated, including Christianity- he was crown by the Pope himself. The Mahometan spread partly by sword, and partly through the sincere fervour of their convert- just as Christianity, after all, was it not recorded in the Chason de Roland that Charlemange forced the inhabitants of Saragossa into conversion- not an indicator, mind, of historical truth of early Christianity (forced conversions were in place), but of the Late-Early Christian mind, their thoughts. Christianity spread worldwide, you say, but you forget how- it was a matter of history that it spread, the European Imperialists were Christians, they forced it down the natives throat in an effort to placate them and accept the White Man's dominion. Some were sincere converts, other associated the power of the white man with his religion, and followed in vain hope for a taste of that power, still others resisted.



alupihan45 wrote:
First of all, Crusade is the reason why you are not a muslim. If there is no crusade, everyone is muslims now. The Vatican was against violence but they have no choice but to seek the help of European Kings to stop the massacre of Christians in Middle East. About the Christians invovled in crimes (yes. Even Hitler was catholic). What can I say? All families have a black sheep. And there is nothing I can do about it if they are also Christians. The word of the Lord didn't go in their heart and mind then it's not our fault anymore.

And why is Christianity not compatible with goodness? this is what i like to hear.

About Gandhi and Buddha (though I don't know if Buddha did exist as their are two versions about him) such type of people exist and let me share this



that is my christian explanation to that.

about God being powerful and wanting to save everyone us all- HE did try to save us all. That is why he sent Jesus Christ for the atonement of all human sins. In religious doctrines, for man to be pardoned from the punishment of their sin (which is death) a pure and sinless being should be sacrificed as a replacement to the sinner. God sent this sacrifice and that is Jesus.

The salvation I speak of is not to be gain but to be received. If there is such path then that would be accepting the salvation offered by God through Jesus and start following him. The path is narrow and rarely taken but it leads to a state of eternal peace and happiness in the afterlife (which is another topic)


I have tried to keep this debate respectful, but then I realise you got your history so wrong, it is laughable- I am Chinese, look at the name, I was never in danger of being a Mahometan- we Chinamen had our Mahometans, to be sure, they are called 'Hui people' but they never were the majority, nor were they strong enough to conquer the ancient Might of China. On the otherhand, your squabble with the Mahometans was not because Europe was in danger- it wasn't, it was because the Eastern Roman Empire was, the Greeks, the Byzanthines, they were about to be conquered by the Mahometans. And, given that, the Mahometans were much more tolerant than the Christians, Moses ben Maimon and Jewish thoughts prospered there, where, in Latin Europe, Jews were running from pitchfork weilding villagers. There was no danger of the extinction of the Christian religion or of any religion. The war started because the Pope thought it was too depressing to watch them kill each other and off each other's head over two inches of land, so, he thought that looting the Orient would be nice. And loot the Crusaders did, they came back three times and, if my history is correct, on either the third or fourth time, they decided that Mahometans were too hard to sack, so they turned on their nomial allies, and loot Constantinople. But Christianity isn't incompatible with goodness, as the lack of Christianity isn't.

But he can just revoke the sins without need of sacrifice, he is all powerful. He doesn't need to kill himself to make himself change his mind about the whole thing. It is truly absurd. Why does he need to sacrifice himself so that he can redeem everyone, when he can just say, for all the world to hear, 'Look, fellas, it ain't cool wot yer doin', if ye'll just follow this 'ere new rules wot I got I'll forgive you, alright?'
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Posted 1/7/12 , edited 1/7/12

1. The Words of Jesus, let us assume, is written into scripture, is wholly accurately presented, etc. etc. Yet, words are nothing but the meaning we give them, words are just senseless scribbles or sound unless we interpret them to mean something, and that is the basis of language, the essence of words is interpretations of its meaning, when we read, we interpret the words to produce its meaning, and, hence our understanding- do you agree on that point? Thus, the churches, while sharing the same words, differ in how to interpret those words, one church draws one meaning, another draws another meaning, so on. So, the perversion comes from this interpretation, yet, would you not agree that, as with the children passing on their little message, the interpretation change, too, with time?

2. We agree on that historical point, I suppose, and also agree that Mark wrote before Matthew or Luke, who drew from Mark, and from another, unknown source, called 'Q source' by scholars of the field, while John was written outside this tradition.

3. When the Roman emperor intervene to create a single bible, a single agreed upon doctrine, and all that, he elected several bishops, archbishops, and heads of the church all to oversee this work, yet, they work under his auspices. Now, agreeing upon these points, why would they not choose those most favourable to Rome, they were, afterall, Romans, they were educated under Rome, nursed by Rome, even if they were persecuted by Rome, there is still an attachment to her culture and, now, to her Emperor who have given them freedom. If Christianity needed to survive during that age, it would have to accommodate the Romans, and it did so remarkably, that the Emperor's mother was Christian. Why shouldn't the bishops have continued this de-Judification of what was originally a Jewish sect?

4. & 5. Now, let me understand, you say that there are certain portion of Christianity that may be changed to accommodate your convenience, yet which portions? You give stoning adulterers and the prohibition against marring beards as an example, but why? The obvious answer, I think, would be that the Old Testament Laws only applied to Jews, whereas gentiles were offered to follow another law, the Naohide Laws, that is, the seven laws applied unto the Children of Noah, while the nations of Israel was offered the Ten Commandment, the Mitzvah, and the Mishna. At least, as I understand it, thus, they have never applied to gentiles. Vanitas Vanitatum, Omnias Vanitas, you say that Christianity can be made to fit so long as it is within religious context- what is your opinion on Woman Ministers? Isn't that against Paul's prohibition? (Corinthian 14:34-5) Or the fact that Homosexuals are still alive, and not put to death immediately? Paul also condemns that too. (Romans 1:31-2) Do you believe that the Jews were Prophet Murderers and killed Jesus? (Matthew 22:31, Matthew 27:25) I assume you would agree that these have no relevance, despite being scripture, despite coming from the mouth of Christ, or Paul himself. We agree that some of the pillars of the Christian faith is unable to bear the pressure of modernity. Yet, to dismantle this pillar, and dismantle that pillar, and to change the roof, the tiling, to bring the Church up with modern times, is that not changing the church completely? Yet, this may seem like Thesus' Ship on the Surface, where we question whether anything can be the same should we, with time, remove all the planks and woods, and leave nothing of the original but the ship, but this is entirely different, as we change the pillars with different pillars, cast and moulded in a different style, replace the old red shingles with blue ones, put marble where stone was, leaving nothing but the same site. It cannot be said to be the same Church, but one that happened to share the same spot as the old Church, and the same name. Therefore, to reject certain aspect that is not in line with the time, to change something that is scripture for convenience, you have ultimately betrayed the faith completely, by putting your convenience over what is perceived to be what makes your God happy.


1. Concerning that words are just scribbles unless someone interprets them, that is true to a certain extent. If someone showed me a page of Russian, they'd just be scribbles to me. If Chinese, I'd only be able to pick out symbols here and there. If Japanese, I could read it with some skill, but am liable to err. If Latin or English, I could read it with perfect fluency. From which you may infer that I have no business telling someone else what a Russian or Chinese sentence means, should defer to the opinion of someone more experienced in Japanese, and that people should listen to me when I tell them what an English or Latin sentence means. It's just the same with interpreting Scripture with the difference that the enlightenment of the Holy Spirit is needed in addition to book knowledge to teach it accurately, and the grace bestowed by the sacrament of Holy Orders on the bishops and the Pope to teach it authoritatively.

How I wish that you could accept the idea of grace! With grace, even the simplest people are able to teach the most learned about Scripture. For example, St. Joseph of Cupertino had very little secular knowledge, but could solve the most difficult problems for the most erudite theologians of his day. St. Benedict the Black, though unable to read or write, was similarly able to solve theological problems for the learned. But, I wish to use an obvious example of Protestants distorting Scripture for their own ends (Matthew 16 13:20):


13And Jesus came into the quarters of Cesarea Philippi: and he asked his disciples, saying: Whom do men say that the Son of man is?

14But they said: Some John the Baptist, and other some Elias, and others Jeremias, or one of the prophets.

15Jesus saith to them: But whom do you say that I am?

16Simon Peter answered and said: Thou art Christ, the Son of the living God.

17And Jesus answering, said to him: Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jona: because flesh and blood hath not revealed it to thee, but my Father who is in heaven.

18And I say to thee: That thou art Peter; and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

19And I will give to thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven. And whatsoever thou shalt bind upon earth, it shall be bound also in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose upon earth, it shall be loosed also in heaven.

20Then he commanded his disciples, that they should tell no one that he was Jesus the Christ.


The two most popular ways for Protestants to put a spin on this passage are 1) to say that it is rather Peter's declaration than Peter himself whom Christ refers to as the rock; or 2) referring to the Greek, Petros means a small stone, so there is no way Christ would delegate such authority to a small stone! But they ignore the play betweeen Petros and petra in both cases. Though petros (which is only found in Greek poetry to refer to a small stone. The bible uses lithos for this purpose.) does refer to a small stone, Christ is naming a Man, so it only makes sense that his name be masculine rather than the feminine petra! And don't forget that rock in Aramaic, the language Jesus spoke, is the masculine cephas, which is the exact name Peter received, Cephas. So that makes the wordplay and that fact that it is Peter who is the rock even more obvious. And you'll find that Protestants stretch other passages in similar manners.

For Catholics, this doctrine has not changed. Note well, that all ecumenical councils from the very beginning needed papal approval to be considered valid. Even if no western bishop was present during the council, as was the case in the Second Ecumenical council at Ephesus, the Greek bishops still submitted the council's judgements to the pope. Let me reiterate that doctrine has not changed in the Catholic Church, but it has in Protestant Churches.

3. The Roman Emperors were helpful to the Church, Emperor Constantine in particular, because they allowed them to practice the faith. If you read more about Constantine's relationship to the church, you'll see that he wasn't theologically astute and instead relied on the judgment of the bishops. For example, the council called under his authority, the First Council of Nicaea, was over a dispute about the nature of Christ. He allowed both sides to debate their positions peacefully. Indeed, when St. Nicolas of Smyrna (the same person little children believe now distributes gifts at Christmas) smacked Arius in the face for denying that Jesus Christ was truly God and truly Man, Constantine had him imprisoned. However, after the judgment of the council that Arius and his followers held a heretical position, he released St. Nicolas.

But that did not quell Arianism! The Arians came out with a new position saying that Jesus was as filled with grace as a human being can be, but still not God. As a matter of fact, Emperor Constantine's own son, Constantius II, tried to force Arianism down the throats of Catholic churches! But even though the Emperor was now an Arian and even though the Army and the ruling class of the Roman Empire were solidly in the grasp of Arianism, Catholic bishops refused to budge on the divinity of Christ. The Catholic church faced persecution by this emperor and later on by Julian the Apostate and Valens. It wasn't until 381 that the conflict over Arianism officially ended in the Roman Empire with the Second Council of Constantinople under Emperor Theodosius. All this goes to show that the Catholic church did not rely on the Emperor's favor, but it was helpful at times.

4. & 5. Those things which can change in the Catholic church are those related to practice, not doctrine. Please note that growing out one's beard in Judaism only concerned those who took the Nazirite vow. It did not concern all Jews, though you do often see more conservative groups of Jews growing beards. As for not stoning adulterers, Christ himself ended that when he told whoever was without sin to cast the first stone (John 8:7). Then concerning dietary laws, all food is declared clean in both the Gospels and in the Acts of the Apostles; otherwise, Christians would still have to observe those laws. But, I will say that many of the laws in the Old Testament, such as the one on divorce, were created because of the hardness of men's hearts. Now that Christ has caused the advent of the Kingdom of His Mercy, we are called to be merciful where people in the past meted out justice: "Forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us."

Concerning woman ministers, the Church has never received the authority to ordain women as priests. Priests symbolize Christ, who was a man, so all priests must be men. Also, all the apostles, the first priests, were men. If Christ wished that women should be ordained too, he would have ordained one! But he did not even ordain his own mother, who was conceived without sin and whose holiness surpasses all the angels and saints.

To use the example of Theseus's ship concerning the difference between doctrine and practice, if the Apostles' Creed were a golden mast, it would remain a golden mast. If the pope were a silver steering wheel, so it would remain. If the seven sacraments were olive planks, these too would remain until the end of time. On the other hand, the priest facing the back of the Church, the celibacy of the priesthood, and women wearing scarves on their head are ordinary wood which can changed at the will of the Magisterium.


Research 'Dictatorship of the Proletarian', to sum it up, it is the Marxist idea that, after the Revolution, the proletarian must set up an interim government to transition them into anarchy, and a combination of Direct Democracy in the Factory and in Politics, that is, a dictatorship of the numerically superior class, acts as this government. The Soviet and all following Revolution followed the Leninist 'Vanguard' model, that is, that the Party acts as a vanguard to lead the workers revolution, and then, lead that government until it can educate the Proletariats and let them have a true Dictatorship of the Proletarian. This obviously didn't work out too well. But, enough of that, this is mere politics, and completely unrelated to the topic at hand. Two separate things, from two separate fields cannot be compared. We do not, say, compare cement to the bus, for example, as the utility of each is devised such that its purpose are, while related, separate, which offers no comparison. Mathematicians study a different branch than the Biologist, they may both use 'ideas', but it remains that they study two different branches, and, as their fields are different, we cannot compare them. You are in error here, you cannot compare all ideas- you may measure out an ideas' effect upon a field, in relation to that field, and all that, and compare that, but it would not be an accurate measurement, because each field use a different system. A Political Economist, we would agree, should not be compared to a Theologian, we should not compare the ideas expressed Mr Marx's Das Kapital to the ideas of St Augustine's Summa Theologia, yet, you see the branches of Science as one, and comparable to each other, when this is not the case. Pray, how may we compare the ideas of Mr Darwin with Mr Newton? We may compare Mr Darwin and Mr Newton in their output of ideas, where Mr Newton does have the greater advantage, and influence, Mr Newton still with the advantage, but, taking to consideration the era which each man lived, and the subject with which each man worked, who is to say that Mr Darwin's discovery was not far harder to achieve, in an area which, by his time, has become exhaustively studied, and, therefore, much harder to make more discoveries, and, thus, should be granted that advantage over Mr Newton? This is what I mean by each field has different system of measuring an idea.


You're completely right here. Except that St. Thomas Aquinas wrote the Summa Theologica, a work we'd both profit from immensely if we took the time to read it. And Communism just doesn't work. Nor does Democracy after the people learn how to vote themselves money! A Republic, a government in which people are bound to obey a set charter is the best system of government, but I suppose that's another discussion.


You use the phrase 'connect with God', who is a being that 'cannot be seen with lens', and is manifested in the form of Christ? Yet, you haven't provided the nature of this God? He must be seperate from us, if we are able to disconnect from him, yet, that would mean he is not infinite, that is, he is lacking in one of the traditional category that defines God, his ubiquity and omnipresence. Losing this omnipresence, you say that the world is guided by God, and that we cannot live a single minute without him (A contradiction with his lack of omnipresence, but all this by and by), and he makes the world ordered, as proof, you provide the mathematical truth, 1+1=2 and never 3. That is true, in so far as we take 3 to mean the concept of 'three', which is essentially 'three', and can not be anything else. God cannot change it nor make it, if he were to exist, because such truths are contained within the essence of one and two and three, that two is composed of two 'ones' and three of three 'ones', and, so, it is impossible for him to make the value of two 'ones' become three 'ones', an absurdity as the impossible to lift rock paradox, and, even if he were to change it, assuming he can, which is impossible, he must still know of a two and a three that is equal to two 'ones' and three 'ones' respectively, and, as these are ideas, so long as this idea exist, it is still real. God, therefore, is not omnipotent. That leaves God omniscience, which means God must know all his past, present, and future actions, meaning there exist something beyond God, a fate, what the antient North-men called the Norns, who has set to stone all things, making this thing a God of itself, which infringes upon the singularity of God, in addition to rendering God nothing but nature, as he cannot deviate from this path whatsoever, leaving him without sentience, freewill, or anything, which, additionally, implies that God is but a car, and we are but cars, dragged by the train Fate, falling into an unchanging track, and there is nothing, nothing at all. That is the implication of such a God, then, existential nihilism- Nothing exist but to exist, and there is nothing else but that. That last part of your post is the strangest, in that you think that I should profess to a religion, before I criticise yours- that is absurd, in that membership to a religion is not a pre-requisite to knowledge of it, and that knowledge is the only thing necessary in a debate. You tell me that, unless I am in a faith, I have no right to say what is unnecessary to faith- I never said anything was unnecessary to religion, but that religion is itself unnecessary for morality, and that faith depends upon the unproven. I do not say this as a commandment, but as something that is reasoned out- faith is dependent on the unproven, or it cease becomes faith, but knowledge, and, until it becomes knowledge, it is simply guess work patched together and culled from an ancient book, with nothing more to recommend it but that many people agree with this guess work, enough so that people are willing to kill for it.


In God, we live, move and have our being. We are separate from him as regards to that which He gave us and sustains: our mind, soul, will, and body. But at the same time, He completely permeates them so that each movement of our souls and bodies are known to Him. He also gives us permission to use them according to our will. If this were not so, we would neither be able to move nor to think because we are completely immersed in God. The fact that he gave us a soul and a body which we can use as we please does not mean that he is not present in them.

Using mathematics to show how God orders the universe was a bad choice on alupihan45's part to illustrate how God orders the universe. Mathematical concepts are completely objective and non-contingent. As Longfenglim said, 1 + 1 always equals 2 as long as one signifies what we all mean to be one. One rather has to look at the structure of the universe. Let's use the example of Earth. It is perfectly positioned in our solar system for life to exist here. We have an ozone layer protecting us from harmful forms of radiation. (Isn't it a bit of a wonder that there is enough oxygen on this planet to support both an ozone layer and living things?) And we have planets like Jupiter, Saturn, and Uranus to absorb most of the meteors that come our way. Then, there is the presence of reason both in the structure of the world and in human beings. Here's a few questions for you to solve: if Reason did not act in the creation of the universe and its laws, how can there be reason in a creature, who is so much less than the universe? Reason is not necessary for other creatures to survive, why should any creature have it? Even more surprising, how can life come from a dead, material universe unless there is one ultimate, creative Source of life?


Let's discuss Attila. Attila didn't care to destroy the Christian faith- it was not God's mercy but human apathy that saved Christianity. God didn't preserve Christianity, just as Ahura Mazda didn't preserve Zoroasterism, nor did the Mahdi preserve the Shias through the Sunni persecution. Many religions survived repeated persecution, invasions, attack- most notably, the Jews, yet, it would be insane to assume that all these gods are true- the Buddhist survived the persecution in China, Taoism and Confucianism survived the Cultural Revolution, and, yet, the fervour of the Red Guards and the Schools brainwashing would have been enough to destroy it completely, you would not dare say that Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism is the true faith. The Khmer Rouge murdered the Monks, the Buddhist, and anyone caught practicing Buddhism, they damn well near murdered everyone, yet, Buddhism return with full force to Cambodia, men and women gladly part with what few pennies they have to share with the Monkhood, and this is surely enough to believe Buddhism is the true faith, if we went by the persecution standard, and, behold, it grows amongst them in the west, it grows faster and faster amongst the educated population, surely that is enough to validate the Buddhists. But it stands, God did not preserve his altar of Worship- he never did, and that is no argument against the invalidity of a God. Survival of Persecution does not validate a God either, as many religion has gone through this trial of fire. Growth, as I said, doesn't indicate truth either, as your growth is split amongst your warring branches. Then, you made a couple historical mistake- neither Napoleon, nor the Moslem, wanted to destroy Christianity- the Mahometan religion had a history of tolerating 'People of the Book', and Napoleon made it law that all religion be tolerated, including Christianity- he was crown by the Pope himself. The Mahometan spread partly by sword, and partly through the sincere fervour of their convert- just as Christianity, after all, was it not recorded in the Chason de Roland that Charlemange forced the inhabitants of Saragossa into conversion- not an indicator, mind, of historical truth of early Christianity (forced conversions were in place), but of the Late-Early Christian mind, their thoughts. Christianity spread worldwide, you say, but you forget how- it was a matter of history that it spread, the European Imperialists were Christians, they forced it down the natives throat in an effort to placate them and accept the White Man's dominion. Some were sincere converts, other associated the power of the white man with his religion, and followed in vain hope for a taste of that power, still others resisted.


As you say, the survival of Christianity during some of these periods of tribulation seems unremarkable compared to how other religions have survived. What is remarkable, however, is how it not only survived, but even grew while facing persecutions from the Jews and the Roman Empire. Is it not remarkable that what began on Pentecost with 12 people increased to hundreds of thousands under such conditions?

And yes, Napoleon wasn't completely inimical to the Catholic church, but there was always tension. The French church was under strict observation during his reign and did not thrive as it might have. As far as I can recall, forced conversion was never practiced in the Church until the conversion of Norway by the saintly King Olaf. But remember that they were dealing with vikings! King Harold the Good was an early Christian king there, and he did not attempt to convert the Norwegians. Rather, the pagan Norwegians set about burning churches, killing priests, and even forced King Harold to eat food sacrificed to idols. Don't forget how violent the religion of the Norse was: the only way to ensure entrance to Valhalla/heaven was to bravely die in combat! One wonders how else Christianity could have peacefully co-existed there. Though, I will say that the forced conversions in Spain and the Thirty Years War were most lamentable, and are not expressive of the general policy of the Church to convert through persuasion.

As for Islam, don't forget that its founder was the leader of a group of bandits, and they used the sword to a much greater extent than they used words.


I have tried to keep this debate respectful, but then I realise you got your history so wrong, it is laughable- I am Chinese, look at the name, I was never in danger of being a Mahometan- we Chinamen had our Mahometans, to be sure, they are called 'Hui people' but they never were the majority, nor were they strong enough to conquer the ancient Might of China. On the otherhand, your squabble with the Mahometans was not because Europe was in danger- it wasn't, it was because the Eastern Roman Empire was, the Greeks, the Byzanthines, they were about to be conquered by the Mahometans. And, given that, the Mahometans were much more tolerant than the Christians, Moses ben Maimon and Jewish thoughts prospered there, where, in Latin Europe, Jews were running from pitchfork weilding villagers. There was no danger of the extinction of the Christian religion or of any religion. The war started because the Pope thought it was too depressing to watch them kill each other and off each other's head over two inches of land, so, he thought that looting the Orient would be nice. And loot the Crusaders did, they came back three times and, if my history is correct, on either the third or fourth time, they decided that Mahometans were too hard to sack, so they turned on their nomial allies, and loot Constantinople. But Christianity isn't incompatible with goodness, as the lack of Christianity isn't.

But he can just revoke the sins without need of sacrifice, he is all powerful. He doesn't need to kill himself to make himself change his mind about the whole thing. It is truly absurd. Why does he need to sacrifice himself so that he can redeem everyone, when he can just say, for all the world to hear, 'Look, fellas, it ain't cool wot yer doin', if ye'll just follow this 'ere new rules wot I got I'll forgive you, alright?'


Perhaps China was never in danger of being overrun by Mahometans, but Europe certainly was! Just look at their domination of Spain, the Balkans, and even half of Italy at one point! What would have happened had not Charles Martel defeated them at the Battle of Tours in 732? What it the Ottoman Empire had not been broken by the heroism of King Jan III Sobieski of Poland during the Battle of Vienna on September 11, 1683? If the pope had not convinced Catholics to send aid to the Emperor of Constantinople during the Crusades, the Muslims would have marched into Europe at a much faster pace. For that reason, the Crusades were more of a defensive war than a war of conquest. Though the Fourth Crusade was a disgrace, one cannot say that religious authorities approved of the Sack of Constantinople, because the Pope excommunicated all those involved. They were supposed to help the Byzantines, not sack their capital!

Yes, Europe has had a history of Anti-Semitism ever since some Vikings responded at the end of Passion narrative that they should "destroy that people which had killed so great and honorable a man!" But, this is not the understanding of the Church. And the treatment of the Jews tended to vary by country. For example, England was always very just in its treatment of Jews save during the hysteria of the Black Plague.

It was not the Jews who killed Christ, but I who killed Christ, and so has every man born under original sin. That is the understanding of the Church. As far as it knows, only St. Mary is exempt from this charge. Indeed, Christ could have redeemed us all with a word, but he chose instead to propitiate God's justice by the shedding of His blood. How much more valuable is it for us to see the very evil of sin by seeing what it cost the innocent, all-Holy Son of God! Don't forget that the fact that He would become a victim for our sins was foreshadowed in the Old Testament by all those spotless lambs offered up as holocausts. His Sacred Passion and Death was the most edifying way he could atone for our sins, because it showed us the greatness of His Love, actually cost Him something, and motivates us to avoid sin and follow His commandments.
Posted 1/7/12

alupihan45 wrote:


DeusExMachina wrote:

What always bothered me about Christianity/Christians is their ability to disown anyone who carries their label and isn't perfect. Isn't the only requirement of being a Christian that you believe that Jesus Christ was the divine son of God and died for your sins?


well, you have to follow the instruction of Jesus if you truly believe. I may say I love my parents but if i don't obey them, i think it is fair that to say that i don't love them all.


Classic case of words being put into another's mouth.

Concerning your parents, it is your own choice if you decide to honor them or not, as there is available to anyone who desires it; self-government.
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longfenglim wrote:


Let us establish your position before we continue, you are a Protestant, that is, born of the Western European Reformation, with an interest in Catholicism, and you acknowledge the truth of the faith within a Catholic Context, the primacy of the Apostles, specifically St. Peter, the Apostlic succession, and the importance of Tradition, basically in the process of conversion from the Protestant faith to the Catholic one. So let's address your point one by one.

1. The Words of Jesus, let us assume, is written into scripture, is wholly accurately presented, etc. etc. Yet, words are nothing but the meaning we give them, words are just senseless scribbles or sound unless we interpret them to mean something, and that is the basis of language, the essence of words is interpretations of its meaning, when we read, we interpret the words to produce its meaning, and, hence our understanding- do you agree on that point? Thus, the churches, while sharing the same words, differ in how to interpret those words, one church draws one meaning, another draws another meaning, so on. So, the perversion comes from this interpretation, yet, would you not agree that, as with the children passing on their little message, the interpretation change, too, with time?

2. We agree on that historical point, I suppose, and also agree that Mark wrote before Matthew or Luke, who drew from Mark, and from another, unknown source, called 'Q source' by scholars of the field, while John was written outside this tradition.

3. When the Roman emperor intervene to create a single bible, a single agreed upon doctrine, and all that, he elected several bishops, archbishops, and heads of the church all to oversee this work, yet, they work under his auspices. Now, agreeing upon these points, why would they not choose those most favourable to Rome, they were, afterall, Romans, they were educated under Rome, nursed by Rome, even if they were persecuted by Rome, there is still an attachment to her culture and, now, to her Emperor who have given them freedom. If Christianity needed to survive during that age, it would have to accommodate the Romans, and it did so remarkably, that the Emperor's mother was Christian. Why shouldn't the bishops have continued this de-Judification of what was originally a Jewish sect?

4. & 5. Now, let me understand, you say that there are certain portion of Christianity that may be changed to accommodate your convenience, yet which portions? You give stoning adulterers and the prohibition against marring beards as an example, but why? The obvious answer, I think, would be that the Old Testament Laws only applied to Jews, whereas gentiles were offered to follow another law, the Naohide Laws, that is, the seven laws applied unto the Children of Noah, while the nations of Israel was offered the Ten Commandment, the Mitzvah, and the Mishna. At least, as I understand it, thus, they have never applied to gentiles. Vanitas Vanitatum, Omnias Vanitas, you say that Christianity can be made to fit so long as it is within religious context- what is your opinion on Woman Ministers? Isn't that against Paul's prohibition? (Corinthian 14:34-5) Or the fact that Homosexuals are still alive, and not put to death immediately? Paul also condemns that too. (Romans 1:31-2) Do you believe that the Jews were Prophet Murderers and killed Jesus? (Matthew 22:31, Matthew 27:25) I assume you would agree that these have no relevance, despite being scripture, despite coming from the mouth of Christ, or Paul himself. We agree that some of the pillars of the Christian faith is unable to bear the pressure of modernity. Yet, to dismantle this pillar, and dismantle that pillar, and to change the roof, the tiling, to bring the Church up with modern times, is that not changing the church completely? Yet, this may seem like Thesus' Ship on the Surface, where we question whether anything can be the same should we, with time, remove all the planks and woods, and leave nothing of the original but the ship, but this is entirely different, as we change the pillars with different pillars, cast and moulded in a different style, replace the old red shingles with blue ones, put marble where stone was, leaving nothing but the same site. It cannot be said to be the same Church, but one that happened to share the same spot as the old Church, and the same name. Therefore, to reject certain aspect that is not in line with the time, to change something that is scripture for convenience, you have ultimately betrayed the faith completely, by putting your convenience over what is perceived to be what makes your God happy.


1. I believe, in this number, your concern is the interpretation. Interpretation-wise, not all has the authority to do so. This is a mere estimate and probably will happen- ask 10 person to read the Bible and each will have their own interpretation. As I told it to my other friends, it would not be a surprise that in the future, each man has their own one-man-christian-sect. So it all comes down, who has the real authority in interpreting the scriptures? The answer would be from the people mandated, anointed and commissioned by Jesus Christ to spread the word. Actually, the Bible is not a big book of riddles or secret code. Everything is there plain and simple when it concerns to Christian living. What causes conflicts among sects most of the time is the theology part (i bet you heard about the debates concerning the deity of Jesus, the saints and stuff).

2. inshaaallah no problem here anymore. just to add information and in line with point 2- Christianity existed before the bible. the real christian religion is not based from a book. The book (the new testament) is based from the Christian religion. As you can see, most of the sect were founded based on their interpretation of the book where the apostolic churches were founded by the teaching and traditions handed to them by Jesus.

3. The emperor didn't appointed the bishops and pope. I think you saw on TV how they choose a pope (an ancient Catholic tradition)

4 (&5). The ten commandment is applicable to all.



The Law and the Prophets pertains to OT. The other nations just don't believe in the OT before that is why God detest them hence he obliterated them. (another topic)

about women minister, well, the apostolic churches have no women minister. About homosexuals, the apostolic churches are still against them and not because they are against it, they will kill them. And the Jews killing Jesus-i don't find the relevance (but for the sake of answering even if it is off topic- yes. Jews killed Jesus. That is the prophecy.)

about the Pillars of Christianity-what are these pillars? we should know first what are you talking about because i have this feeling you have a wrong idea about modification in christian living for modern times.


longfenglim
Research 'Dictatorship of the Proletarian', to sum it up, it is the Marxist idea that, after the Revolution, the proletarian must set up an interim government to transition them into anarchy, and a combination of Direct Democracy in the Factory and in Politics, that is, a dictatorship of the numerically superior class, acts as this government. The Soviet and all following Revolution followed the Leninist 'Vanguard' model, that is, that the Party acts as a vanguard to lead the workers revolution, and then, lead that government until it can educate the Proletariats and let them have a true Dictatorship of the Proletarian. This obviously didn't work out too well. But, enough of that, this is mere politics, and completely unrelated to the topic at hand. Two separate things, from two separate fields cannot be compared. We do not, say, compare cement to the bus, for example, as the utility of each is devised such that its purpose are, while related, separate, which offers no comparison. Mathematicians study a different branch than the Biologist, they may both use 'ideas', but it remains that they study two different branches, and, as their fields are different, we cannot compare them. You are in error here, you cannot compare all ideas- you may measure out an ideas' effect upon a field, in relation to that field, and all that, and compare that, but it would not be an accurate measurement, because each field use a different system. A Political Economist, we would agree, should not be compared to a Theologian, we should not compare the ideas expressed Mr Marx's Das Kapital to the ideas of St Augustine's Summa Theologia, yet, you see the branches of Science as one, and comparable to each other, when this is not the case. Pray, how may we compare the ideas of Mr Darwin with Mr Newton? We may compare Mr Darwin and Mr Newton in their output of ideas, where Mr Newton does have the greater advantage, and influence, Mr Newton still with the advantage, but, taking to consideration the era which each man lived, and the subject with which each man worked, who is to say that Mr Darwin's discovery was not far harder to achieve, in an area which, by his time, has become exhaustively studied, and, therefore, much harder to make more discoveries, and, thus, should be granted that advantage over Mr Newton? This is what I mean by each field has different system of measuring an idea.


well then, if that is the case, Christians can't say they are superior to others because we cannot compare ourselves to other school of thoughts or belief system. Ergo, my point that Christians don't feel superior is true and me stating that one believe that their belief or thought is superior than the other is wrong.


longfenglim

You use the phrase 'connect with God', who is a being that 'cannot be seen with lens', and is manifested in the form of Christ? Yet, you haven't provided the nature of this God? He must be seperate from us, if we are able to disconnect from him, yet, that would mean he is not infinite, that is, he is lacking in one of the traditional category that defines God, his ubiquity and omnipresence. Losing this omnipresence, you say that the world is guided by God, and that we cannot live a single minute without him (A contradiction with his lack of omnipresence, but all this by and by), and he makes the world ordered, as proof, you provide the mathematical truth, 1+1=2 and never 3. That is true, in so far as we take 3 to mean the concept of 'three', which is essentially 'three', and can not be anything else. God cannot change it nor make it, if he were to exist, because such truths are contained within the essence of one and two and three, that two is composed of two 'ones' and three of three 'ones', and, so, it is impossible for him to make the value of two 'ones' become three 'ones', an absurdity as the impossible to lift rock paradox, and, even if he were to change it, assuming he can, which is impossible, he must still know of a two and a three that is equal to two 'ones' and three 'ones' respectively, and, as these are ideas, so long as this idea exist, it is still real. God, therefore, is not omnipotent. That leaves God omniscience, which means God must know all his past, present, and future actions, meaning there exist something beyond God, a fate, what the antient North-men called the Norns, who has set to stone all things, making this thing a God of itself, which infringes upon the singularity of God, in addition to rendering God nothing but nature, as he cannot deviate from this path whatsoever, leaving him without sentience, freewill, or anything, which, additionally, implies that God is but a car, and we are but cars, dragged by the train Fate, falling into an unchanging track, and there is nothing, nothing at all. That is the implication of such a God, then, existential nihilism- Nothing exist but to exist, and there is nothing else but that. That last part of your post is the strangest, in that you think that I should profess to a religion, before I criticise yours- that is absurd, in that membership to a religion is not a pre-requisite to knowledge of it, and that knowledge is the only thing necessary in a debate. You tell me that, unless I am in a faith, I have no right to say what is unnecessary to faith- I never said anything was unnecessary to religion, but that religion is itself unnecessary for morality, and that faith depends upon the unproven. I do not say this as a commandment, but as something that is reasoned out- faith is dependent on the unproven, or it cease becomes faith, but knowledge, and, until it becomes knowledge, it is simply guess work patched together and culled from an ancient book, with nothing more to recommend it but that many people agree with this guess work, enough so that people are willing to kill for it.


a most common mistake made by men is to limit the "concept of a deity" into "human limitation". God is so unfathomable or hard to understand that men did anthromorphism (ask DomFortress what is that) just to have a slight idea of God (as evidence by the books of Moses)

I myself with all my pursuit of theological studies cannot put a finger on a complete idea about God. Just when I thought I was close when I realize i'm still far away. If you want a detail about God read the Bible. And why must God separate from us and how does him being infinite (as a perfect God-he must be finite and infinite. another topic and a topic i don't understand) has relevance to men "making a new relationship with God"? well, i don't know if you are thinking the physical connection but when I said to reconnect to God. I meant, "making a new relationship" sense.

philosophy-wise- three can be anything. I can hold a pen and call it three. The essence of the pen is still the same but the name is different. however, essence-wise, granted that God created it, God can modify it. Imagine the world as a book and God as the author. Is it possible that God can rewrite the book and the book will retain it's name as "our world"? (we are going way off topic but please, sir, i know you know what I mean when I mentioned the equations of the world written and guided by an intelligent designer)

to criticize is another. to "tell us what is neccessary" is different. please do not confuse those two things.

and no one can explain faith completely. an explained faith is not faith at all.

longfenglim


First off, had you worship Woden, Thunor, Vishnu, Shiva, or Ra, and good come unto you, you would attribute to whatever God you worship. Dr Dawkin has put it more much better than I ever can:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Sf_FdoSft_c
But, then, you pose an interesting question, not for its originality or intelligence, but for the shere absurdity and the universal application of it, had the worshippers of idols and likeness made from stones and trees worship their Gods, would not God have visited his wrath upon them? Has those brought up in the bosoms of Christianity, raised by her milk and suckled upon her teats, had these babes, when they learned to walk and think, left the church and warred against it like the Modern Atheists do, would he not visit his wrath upon them? Yet, the rain still falls upon the heathens and the Christians alike. And still no punishment, divine or otherwise, is visited upon them.

You then try to defend William Paley's argument, when in the face of Science- observe a watch, you would notice now perfectly and smoothly it runs, yet, would you not agree that it would be a mistake to assume all watches of all era were so? Was it not born from the imperfections of its ancestors, through the centuries of improvements and innovations, by different watch makers, to make this new watch which you carry about, either in your waist coat or your wrist? If a man were to say that watches were always so, it would be laughable, as he only observe the now, and finds it perfect, when you ignored that generations that lead up to it. So it is with the human body, our body seems perfect, only because we have had millions of years to adapt and change it through the processes of Evolution. Our body magnificently sustains life because of the processes of evolution, because it has been perfected- but it is not perfect. Vestigial Organs and Vestigial structures exist within the human body, with no purposes what-so-ever, none that the might of science can detect. You may say it is God's mysterious ways, and a proof that infinite God is beyond the weak and feeble science of man, yet, many times were these organs removed, with no negative consequence, and, indeed, improved health. The Wisdom Teeth, for example. In fact, there is a name for this sort of argument- it is called 'Argument from Bad Design', so start the praising.


before I became a Christian, i'm an believer or voodoo, witchcraft or sorcery and anything we call Black Art. I pray to dead spirits before for guidance and help. And with a strong Chinese culture with me, i believe in a lot of charms, feng shui and many stuff. ask me when something good happened to me when I did this?

in OT, it is evident how God showed his wrath to mankind for being evil. If we wasn't so loving he would flood the world again but he made a promise that He will not do it again. About the evil people who goes unpunished, that is were afterlife comes in (according to Christian doctrines). These people may have gained the world but they have lose their soul. (i have these feeling the next arguement will be off topic which will be about afterlife).

about william paley's watch, i'm not talking about perfection. I am talking about the sophistication of the watch. and my point is, a sophisticated watch cannot just create itself alone or naturally by natural means.

about the Vetigial Organs, LOL. that is an evolutionist myth. Tell me a specific part of the body that has no function.

All the parts of the body has a function. Sure some can be removed and the human can still survive; however their would be a decrease in function. Not because a man can survive without a certain part means that part has no function. and improved health? I'm a man from medical science and this really sounds funny. (no offense. I just find this amusing)


alupihan45 wrote:

i stand corrected then. All this time i thought Woden and Odin were the same since the Wednesday came from Woden's name and all the name of the day from the week is from the Nordic gods. Anyway, if God didn't protected the church during the time of Atilla, there should be no more Christians today. That is all I can. Oh, you were talking about the building-type church.

And I thought the Norwegians and the Danes were the soldiers of the Crusades. hmm...

Take note, my friend, that part of the life of the early Christians, heck even today, is persecution. When people persecute us. It was not them doing harm to us. It was God who is giving us the glory of dying because of our faith.

And no, Islam is the second largest religion. After the Arab Spring, all of us Christians here in Arab countries are afraid that there would be another religious war (like what is happening in egypt. They are burning Christian churches and killing Christians). Like in LIbya. Gaddaffi made Islam a state religion and no other libyans should practice any other religion or they shall be put to prison (you are lucky if you are put in prison during the time of Gaddafi. Usually, people just disapper). Now, there is no dictator and the some libyans are starting to go back to Christianity (there were a lot of Christians here before Gaddaffi rose to power).

And yeah, it's not about the size and number of converts that makes the church authentic (i thought i mentioned you the Apostolic Churches already. Why are we going back?). However, our history, the Christians shows how many eras of persecutions that should have eradicated our faith but not of this persecution prevailed. Instead, we grow bigger.

May I quote this: Acts 5:33-39



Islam came and spread their religion with fire and sword. The church was protected by the Crusades (Islam already invaded Spain that time and they were in present day Turkey that time). Islam failed to eradicate us (even God's chosen people- the jews). Napoleon (though I love this megalomaniac) with his revolution "Liberta" failed to eradicate the Christians.

You see, if our faith is of man's origin, we should had failed during the death of Jesus or the death of the Apostles. But now, 2000 years pass, Christianity spreads on all corners of the world.


longfenglim
Let's discuss Attila. Attila didn't care to destroy the Christian faith- it was not God's mercy but human apathy that saved Christianity. God didn't preserve Christianity, just as Ahura Mazda didn't preserve Zoroasterism, nor did the Mahdi preserve the Shias through the Sunni persecution. Many religions survived repeated persecution, invasions, attack- most notably, the Jews, yet, it would be insane to assume that all these gods are true- the Buddhist survived the persecution in China, Taoism and Confucianism survived the Cultural Revolution, and, yet, the fervour of the Red Guards and the Schools brainwashing would have been enough to destroy it completely, you would not dare say that Buddhism, Taoism, and Confucianism is the true faith. The Khmer Rouge murdered the Monks, the Buddhist, and anyone caught practicing Buddhism, they damn well near murdered everyone, yet, Buddhism return with full force to Cambodia, men and women gladly part with what few pennies they have to share with the Monkhood, and this is surely enough to believe Buddhism is the true faith, if we went by the persecution standard, and, behold, it grows amongst them in the west, it grows faster and faster amongst the educated population, surely that is enough to validate the Buddhists. But it stands, God did not preserve his altar of Worship- he never did, and that is no argument against the invalidity of a God. Survival of Persecution does not validate a God either, as many religion has gone through this trial of fire. Growth, as I said, doesn't indicate truth either, as your growth is split amongst your warring branches. Then, you made a couple historical mistake- neither Napoleon, nor the Moslem, wanted to destroy Christianity- the Mahometan religion had a history of tolerating 'People of the Book', and Napoleon made it law that all religion be tolerated, including Christianity- he was crown by the Pope himself. The Mahometan spread partly by sword, and partly through the sincere fervour of their convert- just as Christianity, after all, was it not recorded in the Chason de Roland that Charlemange forced the inhabitants of Saragossa into conversion- not an indicator, mind, of historical truth of early Christianity (forced conversions were in place), but of the Late-Early Christian mind, their thoughts. Christianity spread worldwide, you say, but you forget how- it was a matter of history that it spread, the European Imperialists were Christians, they forced it down the natives throat in an effort to placate them and accept the White Man's dominion. Some were sincere converts, other associated the power of the white man with his religion, and followed in vain hope for a taste of that power, still others resisted.


Dude, just look at the greatness of the Christian nations. that's all i can say. Have your reason- i don't care (i'm saying it in the most pleasant and friendly manner i can). I can't do anything else for a "determined skeptic". Skeptics were mentioned in the Bible. We can't just do anything with them.



about napoleon, see how the french revolution attacked the Catholics http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dechristianisation_of_France_during_the_French_Revolution

and the islam, i guess you haven't read the quran nor had you read about it's history of Jihad. Did you know that islam saw us as impure races?

And about the imperialist, these people (my country was one of this conquered natives) came to expand and find new resources. They didn't forced religion to the native. There is no need for them to give us a religion. They only wanted wealth and power. They destroyed villages in my country. Religion was spread only because there were missionaries with them and these missionaries' only intention was to spread the faith. In conlusion- the imperialist didn't came for the sake of conversion. religion spread because of the good missionaries who dedicated their life in spreading the good news.


longfenglim

I have tried to keep this debate respectful, but then I realise you got your history so wrong, it is laughable- I am Chinese, look at the name, I was never in danger of being a Mahometan- we Chinamen had our Mahometans, to be sure, they are called 'Hui people' but they never were the majority, nor were they strong enough to conquer the ancient Might of China. On the otherhand, your squabble with the Mahometans was not because Europe was in danger- it wasn't, it was because the Eastern Roman Empire was, the Greeks, the Byzanthines, they were about to be conquered by the Mahometans. And, given that, the Mahometans were much more tolerant than the Christians, Moses ben Maimon and Jewish thoughts prospered there, where, in Latin Europe, Jews were running from pitchfork weilding villagers. There was no danger of the extinction of the Christian religion or of any religion. The war started because the Pope thought it was too depressing to watch them kill each other and off each other's head over two inches of land, so, he thought that looting the Orient would be nice. And loot the Crusaders did, they came back three times and, if my history is correct, on either the third or fourth time, they decided that Mahometans were too hard to sack, so they turned on their nomial allies, and loot Constantinople. But Christianity isn't incompatible with goodness, as the lack of Christianity isn't.

But he can just revoke the sins without need of sacrifice, he is all powerful. He doesn't need to kill himself to make himself change his mind about the whole thing. It is truly absurd. Why does he need to sacrifice himself so that he can redeem everyone, when he can just say, for all the world to hear, 'Look, fellas, it ain't cool wot yer doin', if ye'll just follow this 'ere new rules wot I got I'll forgive you, alright?'


dude, you contained the crusades in the middle east and europe only. You said that China was not in danger from the Jihadist muslim all this is thanks to our european friends. Let's say the Islam succeeded, they have purged the infidels. Where do you think this warmonger will go next after europe?

i'm not saying they are strong enough to conquer China but they will attack Chine if given the chance and who knows if the ancient Chinese can really stand strong. Middle East was converted and this converts added to the ranks of the Jihadist. They may apply same tactics in China. well, that's just me saying.

About the Byzantine against the islam, that is not yet the crusade.

and the islam more tolerant? LOL. Have you read the quran?

and christianity not in danger? did you know how many Christians were killed by islam even up to now?

And how did you know what the Pope was thinking? And the Crusaders came to loot?

OMG, and you have the guts to laugh about my knowledge of the church history? LOL(no offense)
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Posted 1/11/12

DeusExMachine wrote:


alupihan45 wrote:


DeusExMachina wrote:

What always bothered me about Christianity/Christians is their ability to disown anyone who carries their label and isn't perfect. Isn't the only requirement of being a Christian that you believe that Jesus Christ was the divine son of God and died for your sins?


well, you have to follow the instruction of Jesus if you truly believe. I may say I love my parents but if i don't obey them, i think it is fair that to say that i don't love them all.


Classic case of words being put into another's mouth.

Concerning your parents, it is your own choice if you decide to honor them or not, as there is available to anyone who desires it; self-government.


to who's mouth and what words?

about the parents, yes it is my will but (again people always focus on the single analogy) my point is still the same. If you want to follow Jesus, you have to adjust your life according to his teaching. That makes a person Christian.
Posted 1/11/12 , edited 1/11/12

alupihan45 wrote:


DeusExMachine wrote:


alupihan45 wrote:


DeusExMachina wrote:

What always bothered me about Christianity/Christians is their ability to disown anyone who carries their label and isn't perfect. Isn't the only requirement of being a Christian that you believe that Jesus Christ was the divine son of God and died for your sins?


well, you have to follow the instruction of Jesus if you truly believe. I may say I love my parents but if i don't obey them, i think it is fair that to say that i don't love them all.


Classic case of words being put into another's mouth.

Concerning your parents, it is your own choice if you decide to honor them or not, as there is available to anyone who desires it; self-government.


to who's mouth and what words?

about the parents, yes it is my will but (again people always focus on the single analogy) my point is still the same. If you want to follow Jesus, you have to adjust your life according to his teaching. That makes a person Christian.
That claim you wrote which I marked in red were your own words forced upon his, when you didn't clarify why obedience was a necessary requirement for unconditional love.

Moreover, your own devotion and obedience towards your religious faith doesn't make you a freethinker. But rather you're enslaved by religious superstitions and dogmas.

Finally, I've a personal mantra/truism regarding the subject of obedience: "only those who lack discipline will demand obedience from others, either verbally, physically, or both". So if you're still a freethinker, feel free to meditate upon that truth for yourself at your own leisure. And then find out for yourself just what exactly have you been conformed and indoctrinated into, and why I'm so against it: death denial caused by both the unrealistic anxiety for social death, and the impossible quest for immortality.
Posted 1/11/12

alupihan45 wrote:


DeusExMachine wrote:


alupihan45 wrote:


DeusExMachina wrote:

What always bothered me about Christianity/Christians is their ability to disown anyone who carries their label and isn't perfect. Isn't the only requirement of being a Christian that you believe that Jesus Christ was the divine son of God and died for your sins?


well, you have to follow the instruction of Jesus if you truly believe. I may say I love my parents but if i don't obey them, i think it is fair that to say that i don't love them all.


Classic case of words being put into another's mouth.

Concerning your parents, it is your own choice if you decide to honor them or not, as there is available to anyone who desires it; self-government.


to who's mouth and what words?

about the parents, yes it is my will but (again people always focus on the single analogy) my point is still the same. If you want to follow Jesus, you have to adjust your life according to his teaching. That makes a person Christian.


Yet, there have been Christians chiefly following the Word of God, and really, Jesus just "repeated" it. It seems like many believe that Jesus is God, but traditionally, Jesus has always been the Son of God and a messenger. Funny how we named Christianity after Christ, yet he is not the most supreme being of the faith. I can see it from the perspective of a prophet forging a path that became named after himself, just as it might be for any inventor of a religion.
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Posted 1/11/12
Jesus is God. Traditionally--by which I expect that you mean the first Christians, Jesus is God, the Second Person of the Most Holy Trinity, God the Son. The fact that the Church admitted the Gospel of John ought to be enough proof of that!

And Jesus cannot be a mere prophet. He declares himself that he and the father are one:

"Philip saith to him: Lord, shew us the Father, and it is enough for us. Jesus saith to him: Have I been so long a time with you; and have you not known me? Philip, he that seeth me seeth the Father also. How sayest thou, Shew us the Father? Do you not believe, that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? The words that I speak to you, I speak not of myself. But the Father who abideth in me, he doth the works. Believe you not that I am in the Father, and the Father in me? Otherwise believe for the very works' sake. Amen, amen I say to you, he that believeth in me, the works that I do, he also shall do; and greater than these shall he do." (Jn 14:8-12)

Either Jesus is "God of God, Light of Light, very God of very God" or he is a blasphemer. There are no other options. One cannot say he is merely a prophet, because he made himself equal to God: "But Jesus answered them: My Father worketh until now; and I work. Hereupon therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he did not only break the sabbath, but also said God was his Father, making himself equal to God. Then Jesus answered, and said to them: Amen, amen, I say unto you, the Son cannot do any thing of himself, but what he seeth the Father doing: for what things soever he doth, these the Son also doth in like manner." (Jn 5:17-19) None of the prophets called God their father. If Jesus were only a prophet, he would not have made himself equal to God, which is a blasphemy for a mere man to do. To reiterate, Jesus is either "good, all good, supreme good" or a wicked man. I believe the former.
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