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Old 11th February 2013, 12:46 PM   #241
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by pakeha View Post
To be honest, it does not answer my point at all.
Let me try again-
If I've understood correctly atonement by blood sacrifice is a pillar of the Judeo-Christian tradition, but of course we know it was lifted from other cultures.

Since we know this concept is age-old, so what could make us pay attention to the claim it is key to the Judeo-Christian tradition and fulfilled in the birth and death of Jesus?

We are, after all, simply talking about something which in essence has nothing to do with the Judeo-Christian tradition but is merely a borrowing from other traditions.
Dear pakeha,

An inner resonance with the Cross. Really, I think thatís what it is. One realises, unconsciously at first, oneís guilt before the Creator, and one casts about for a way even for modern man to expiate that guilt, and one encounters the Cross, which is unique across history for its portrayal of an intelligible universal atonement. And I think the gospel of love has a lot to do with this, of describing God as love, and as good, and man faces this Goodness and realises that he himself doesnít measure up, can never measure up in this life, and he feels this thing within him that wonít go away no matter how carefully logicked and empiricised it is. Eventually one either accepts this faith or denies it unto death. So, thatís what I think the value is, meriting our payment of attention.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 11th February 2013, 12:51 PM   #242
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by tsig View Post
Doesn't seem to be on point:

The Roman Catholic Church teaches that "baptism is necessary for salvation." (Catechism of the Catholic Church, ss. 1257).[1] It moreover teaches that baptism confers the forgiveness of sins by virtue of the enactment of the sacrament itself: "(b)y Baptism all sins are forgiven, original sin and all personal sins, as well as all punishment for sin." (ss. 1263). For Catholics, baptism is a unique, unrepeatable act; no one who has been baptized validly can receive the full pardon conferred by the sacrament a second time. (ss. 1272) Given these doctrines, it is a matter of serious concern for the Catholic Church if a believing Christian does not receive a valid baptism.

The doctrine of baptism of desire seeks to address some of the implications of these teachings. It holds that those who, as adults, come to faith in Christ and become catechumens but who die before receiving baptism nevertheless are admitted to salvation even though the Church teaches that baptism is necessary for salvation.
From http://www.catholicessentials.net/baptismofdesire.htm

Baptism of Desire is one of the two possible substitutes for Baptism of water. When it is not possible thus to be baptized, an act of perfect contrition or pure love of God will supply the omission. Such acts are a perfect and ultimate diposition calling for the infusion of sanctifying grace, and at least implicitly include a desire and intention to receive Baptism of water should occasion offer. Infants are not capable of Baptism of desire. An heathen, believing, even though in a confused way, in a God whose will should be done and desiring to do that will whatever it may be, probably has Baptism of desire. It may reasonably be assumed that vast numbers of persons unbaptized by water have thus been rendered capable of enjoying the Beatific Vision.

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Old 11th February 2013, 01:01 PM   #243
Akri
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
I’m not believing God is good on His say-so, I’m believing it on the faith that He has given me, which I take as true insight into the nature of existence. I suppose one could argue I’m insane in which case my faith would be invalid; I have believed mad things before. But believing one is insane has zero utility and so I have no reason to do so. Besides, I have faith that I am not insane.
You don't have to be insane to be wrong. Do you think that you're incapable of being wrong?

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If I am arrogant in my faith I hope that arrogance does not translate into boastfulness on my own part. But the faith itself presents the truth of Religion and so believing in that truth is hardly arrogant in a negative sense, any more than believing in the truths of Science is arrogant in a negative sense. Doesn’t scientific accomplishment swell your breast?
Believing in a scientific truth without being open to even the possibility of error is absolutely arrogance in the negative sense, because it presumes infallibility.

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I think logical arguments played a role in my conversion by working on my mind subconsciously, but so long as my heart was set against God these arguments held no power to persuade. This probably seems intellectually dishonest to you, but I can’t help that except to submit my own story of conversion which was a case of my repeated and vicious attempts to squelch faith in God, followed by a cessation of hostilities and an acceptance of an irreducible something in my mind which I found intelligible (e.g. the Atonement) whether or not I could logic my way to it starting from a null hypothesis.
How is this relevant?

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God is a god of history. He does not just deal with individuals, but with nations. Christ came when His coming would have the maximum effect.
So God didn't give us the correct morality, not because we couldn't understand it, but because it wouldn't have "maximum effect"? He held off on encouraging mercy because, what, Moses couldn't draw as big a crowd as Jesus so there was no point in even attempting to teaching that concept?

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And knowledge of physical pain is knowledge of good and bad.
You're equivocating "bad" as in "unpleasant" with "bad" and in "immoral." Experiencing physical pain would make them aware of unpleasantness, but it would not grant them understanding of moral vs, immoral behavior. A toddler who burns his hand on the stove doesn't suddenly understand that taking things without asking is immoral.

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Not good and evil, but good and bad. They knew they’d get a spanking if they disobeyed God, and went ahead and did it anyway.
"A spanking"? You're equating what amounts to parental abandonment with a spanking? Really?

And no, they didn't understand that they would get punished. God told them they would die if they ate the fruit (which was a lie) but not that he would punish them. Once they learned the fruit would not harm them they had no reason not to eat it other than God telling them not to--and, again, they had no understanding that it would be wrong to disobey because they did not understand such concepts. If you think they did then kindly quote the relevant scripture.

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Well, supposedly God made the Universe in seven days. I think we’re being over-literal about what “day” means in these places.
I was actually wrong about the use of the word day--apparently God just says that if they ate the fruit they would die. Which is vague enough that it's not technically a lie, but it's misleading as hell.

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Again, from a child’s perspective her parent is full of mysterious flaws. That God is mysterious is a problem for man, but one relies on faith that these mysteries are not fatal to us.
I was hoping you would actually clarify your statements.

Last edited by Akri; 11th February 2013 at 01:02 PM.
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Old 11th February 2013, 01:12 PM   #244
Craig B
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
From http://www.catholicessentials.net/baptismofdesire.htm

<snip>An heathen, believing, even though in a confused way, in a God whose will should be done and desiring to do that will whatever it may be, probably has Baptism of desire[/b]. It may reasonably be assumed that vast numbers of persons unbaptized by water have thus been rendered capable of enjoying the Beatific Vision.

Cpl Ferro
Well that's a step in the right direction I suppose and it's certainly a lot better that what Boniface VIII states in his Bull Unam Sanctam:
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Furthermore, we declare, we proclaim, we define that it is absolutely necessary for salvation that every human creature be subject to the Roman Pontiff.
So religious truths change from time to time
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Old 11th February 2013, 04:12 PM   #245
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by Craig B View Post
Well that's a step in the right direction I suppose and it's certainly a lot better that what Boniface VIII states in his Bull Unam Sanctam: So religious truths change from time to time
[shrug]

Well, Craig, one could be an implicit subject, just as all the faithful regardless of time, place, or allegiance are implicitly part of the Mystical Body of Christ.

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Old 11th February 2013, 04:35 PM   #246
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Dear Akri,

I think that I am infallible only with regards to faith in Christ and its immediate corollaries God and sin. I am helpless to think otherwise. Such is the nature of faith as I understand it.

I didn’t mean to perfectly equate religion and science, merely to draw a comparison. To wit, even science believes there is Truth to be found. Religion finds it on its own terms. Neither, through experiment and revelation respectively, arrive at the final expression.

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I think logical arguments played a role in my conversion by working on my mind subconsciously, but so long as my heart was set against God these arguments held no power to persuade…
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How is this relevant?
It speaks to how one must be open to faith before one is given it.

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So God didn't give us the correct morality, not because we couldn't understand it, but because it wouldn't have "maximum effect"? He held off on encouraging mercy because, what, Moses couldn't draw as big a crowd as Jesus so there was no point in even attempting to teaching that concept?
That may well have been.

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And knowledge of physical pain is knowledge of good and bad.
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You're equivocating "bad" as in "unpleasant" with "bad" and in "immoral." Experiencing physical pain would make them aware of unpleasantness, but it would not grant them understanding of moral vs, immoral behavior. A toddler who burns his hand on the stove doesn't suddenly understand that taking things without asking is immoral.
Obedience is all that matters here. Obedience is good, disobedience evil. So long as there was a known meaningful consequence to disobedience, the test is valid.

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Not good and evil, but good and bad. They knew they’d get a spanking if they disobeyed God, and went ahead and did it anyway.
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"A spanking"? You're equating what amounts to parental abandonment with a spanking? Really?
It only “amounts to parental abandonment” in human terms. In terms of śternity it is significant but not overwhelming.

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And no, they didn't understand that they would get punished. God told them they would die if they ate the fruit (which was a lie) but not that he would punish them. Once they learned the fruit would not harm them they had no reason not to eat it other than God telling them not to--and, again, they had no understanding that it would be wrong to disobey because they did not understand such concepts. If you think they did then kindly quote the relevant scripture.
You don’t know they didn’t know disobedience meant incurring God’s displeasure. And He didn’t lie, they did indeed die after eating the fruit, just many years later.

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I was hoping you would actually clarify your statements
Perfection is far enough from human life to be strange to us were we to encounter it.

Cpl Ferro

Last edited by CplFerro; 11th February 2013 at 04:36 PM.
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Old 11th February 2013, 05:18 PM   #247
Akri
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
I think that I am infallible only with regards to faith in Christ and its immediate corollaries God and sin. I am helpless to think otherwise. Such is the nature of faith as I understand it.
Why do you think you are incapable of being mistaken here? After all, you must know that you can make mistakes elsewhere. You also must know that other people have mistaken faith (consider all the people with faith in religions other than yours). How come they can be wrong, but you can't?

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I didnít mean to perfectly equate religion and science, merely to draw a comparison. To wit, even science believes there is Truth to be found. Religion finds it on its own terms. Neither, through experiment and revelation respectively, arrive at the final expression.
My point was that you got the important part of the comparison wrong: scientists are supposed to believe that they will make mistake and get things wrong, while you are doing the opposite.

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It speaks to how one must be open to faith before one is given it.
No, it speaks to how you had to be open to faith. I already told you that faith can't work for me because I acknowledge my own fallibility. Don't assume that what works for you works for everyone.

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That may well have been.
So did God not want early humans to be moral? After all, even if he couldn't spread the message to everyone at that time (but really, he could have, because he's God) he still could have given it to some people. And the earlier he gave that information to someone, the more time there would be for that person to teach others and for the message to spread. There would have been no downside to sending the message out earlier, and the upside would be more people behaving morally and not doing bad things to one another. Maybe there would have been less death and suffering if God had spent less time telling people how to carry out executions for certain crimes, and more time telling them to be loving and forgiving.

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Obedience is all that matters here. Obedience is good, disobedience evil. So long as there was a known meaningful consequence to disobedience, the test is valid.
How could they know that obedience is good and disobedience is evil if they had no knowledge of the concepts yet? Stop trying to dodge this issue. If you want to say that they had the knowledge already then quote me the scripture. Otherwise you cannot argue that they knew what they were doing was wrong. And no, they did not know that there was a meaningful consequence--the Snake told them they would not die, and what reason did they have to ignore the Snake? When God said they would die from the fruit it wasn't stated as a punishment ("I will kill you for eating the fruit") but a warning ("if you eat the fruit you'll die"). The were told the warning was wrong, and so they ate the fruit. They had no expectation of any negative consequences, and they lacked the capacity to understand that there should be negative consequences.

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It only ďamounts to parental abandonmentĒ in human terms. In terms of śternity it is significant but not overwhelming.
Abandonment doesn't have to be permanent. God was their parent, and he abandoned them for years. The term fits.

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You donít know they didnít know disobedience meant incurring Godís displeasure.
Nothing in Genesis indicates that they knew eating the fruit would incur God's displeasure until after they had eaten it.

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And He didnít lie, they did indeed die after eating the fruit, just many years later.
Like I said, it's technically true. However it's also highly misleading. Saying "if you eat this fruit you will die" makes it sound like eating the fruit will result in immediate (or near-immediate) death, caused specifically by the fruit.

It's also notable that God said "if you eat this you will die" and not "if you eat this I will cast you out of the Garden, you will suffer through hard labor and difficult childbirth, and after many years you will die." Both statements are technically true, but the second is more honest as it actually gives all of the relevant information.

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Perfection is far enough from human life to be strange to us were we to encounter it.
Do you not understand what it means to clarify something?
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Old 11th February 2013, 06:38 PM   #248
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Building on the story in the Book of Job, how does anyone know that God and his buddy Satan did go for another walk and make another bet?

This time they created the false Saviour Jesus Christ to fool people and turn them from the True Path.

The Old Testament has not been replaced. Christians have been taken in by a clever trick. No pork for you.
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Old 11th February 2013, 10:20 PM   #249
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If I get the OP right then we don't care about the DSS and preach anyway?
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Old 11th February 2013, 10:42 PM   #250
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
I think of it like a gardener planting a garden, Norseman. He knows some plants will not survive, but that if tended well the end result will be beautiful.

Cpl Ferro
I'm confused by your response. I was asking why god created sin if it is so abhorrent to him; your analogy is failing to communicate what it is you wish to say.


Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Dear Norseman,

Leading a sinless life of perfect love for God and man.

It's not a matter of God "letting" anyone fulfill this role, it's a matter of no one being able to. The best we can do is try.

Cpl Ferro
Yeshua didn't live a sinless life either as far as I remember.


Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
There is a branch of theology called the apophatic. It deals with negative attributes of God only. Thus we say God is immortal, imperishable, not coloured, weightless, and so forth. The consequence of this is that we see God as only analogous to those positive traits we do give Him, eg., existence. God is so strange that He doesnít exist in the way that a keyboard exists or an orange exists or a Grandmother exists. He is so subtle as to be almost nonexistent. The same goes for personality; Godís personality is what our own is cast in the mould of, but the difference between them is still vast.

So with morality: Godís understanding of morality is perfect, and goes beyond the human instinct. Vengeance is a natural human instinct, for example, but God reserves vengeance for Himself. Hating oneís enemies likewise; God reserves hate for Himself.

That is the best I can explain it at present.

Cpl Ferro
According to your apophatic Christianity, John Scot Erigena in the 9th century had said, "[w]e do not know what God is. God Himself does not know what He is because He is not anything. Literally God is not, because He transcends being."
So --- "God is not" means that no one can make any meaningful descriptions of this being -- including you. So why do you persist in telling us about God when you now quote a branch of religious philosophy which defines God out of existence?

I mean, it was amusing to read about how the apophatics were saying how God is unknowable and by that, we know him. Um... no you don't, and you don't by your own premises.



Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Iím not believing God is good on His say-so, Iím believing it on the faith that He has given me, which I take as true insight into the nature of existence. I suppose one could argue Iím insane in which case my faith would be invalid; I have believed mad things before. But believing one is insane has zero utility and so I have no reason to do so. Besides, I have faith that I am not insane.
Just curious if you can tell us what evidence would persuade you that you were insane.


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But the faith itself presents the truth of Religion and so believing in that truth is hardly arrogant in a negative sense, any more than believing in the truths of Science is arrogant in a negative sense. Doesnít scientific accomplishment swell your breast?
By this hilited phrase, you seem to be saying that all religions are true, even if contradictory. Is this correct?



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Well, supposedly God made the Universe in seven days. I think weíre being over-literal about what ďdayĒ means in these places.
Are there other places where we're being overly literal? I think the entire story (even the entire bible) isn't to be taken literally. Why would you seemingly cherry-pick one thing like 'a day' and decide that it isn't to be understood as plainly as it is written?
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Old 12th February 2013, 11:04 AM   #251
CplFerro
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Dear Akri,

Yes, I am firmly aware of my fallibility in other regards. I have no logical explanation for my inability to believe I might be mistaken here; it reduces to the irreducible faith I have in the existence of God. Itís something Iíve pushed away and attacked lots in my life, but which I cannot expunge. I have accepted that I have faith, and further accepted the implication that said faith is a form of knowledge which precludes error. If other people have faith in the opposite (e.g. positive atheism) I cannot help but conclude they must be mistaken. Again, how they can be wrong and I canít?óbecause my faith tells me so. Probably an insufficient answer for you, but there you have it.

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My point was that you got the important part of the comparison wrong: scientists are supposed to believe that they will make mistake and get things wrong, while you are doing the opposite.
Such is the nature of faith.

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No, it speaks to how you had to be open to faith. I already told you that faith can't work for me because I acknowledge my own fallibility. Don't assume that what works for you works for everyone.
Are you infallible when you say you are fallible?

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So did God not want early humans to be moral? After all, even if he couldn't spread the message to everyone at that time (but really, he could have, because he's God) he still could have given it to some people. And the earlier he gave that information to someone, the more time there would be for that person to teach others and for the message to spread. There would have been no downside to sending the message out earlier, and the upside would be more people behaving morally and not doing bad things to one another. Maybe there would have been less death and suffering if God had spent less time telling people how to carry out executions for certain crimes, and more time telling them to be loving and forgiving.
It may have been that first century Rome was the most crucial point in history for Christís ministry and Passion to occur. There may be factors weíre not aware of. History isnít a simple beast.

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How could they know that obedience is good and disobedience is evil if they had no knowledge of the concepts yet? Stop trying to dodge this issue. If you want to say that they had the knowledge already then quote me the scripture. Otherwise you cannot argue that they knew what they were doing was wrong. And no, they did not know that there was a meaningful consequence--the Snake told them they would not die, and what reason did they have to ignore the Snake? When God said they would die from the fruit it wasn't stated as a punishment ("I will kill you for eating the fruit") but a warning ("if you eat the fruit you'll die"). The were told the warning was wrong, and so they ate the fruit. They had no expectation of any negative consequences, and they lacked the capacity to understand that there should be negative consequences.
They didnít know obedience is good and disobedience is evil, they knew only that obedience pleased God and disobedience displeased Him. Without that knowledge it could hardly be said they understood what ďobedienceĒ meant.

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Abandonment doesn't have to be permanent. God was their parent, and he abandoned them for years. The term fits.
Hmm. I suppose youíre right.

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Nothing in Genesis indicates that they knew eating the fruit would incur God's displeasure until after they had eaten it.
Genesis doesnít say where Cainís wife came from either.


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And He didnít lie, they did indeed die after eating the fruit, just many years later.
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Like I said, it's technically true. However it's also highly misleading. Saying "if you eat this fruit you will die" makes it sound like eating the fruit will result in immediate (or near-immediate) death, caused specifically by the fruit.
[shrug] We donít know Godís intonation.

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It's also notable that God said "if you eat this you will die" and not "if you eat this I will cast you out of the Garden, you will suffer through hard labor and difficult childbirth, and after many years you will die." Both statements are technically true, but the second is more honest as it actually gives all of the relevant information.
Itís not Godís style to give us too much information, aside from history and preaching.

[quote]Perfection is far enough from human life to be strange to us were we to encounter it.
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Do you not understand what it means to clarify something?
Iím afraid youíve lost me. Do you understand what I mean by God being analogous to a human personality?

Cpl Ferro
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Old 12th February 2013, 11:06 AM   #252
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by Gord_in_Toronto View Post
Building on the story in the Book of Job, how does anyone know that God and his buddy Satan did go for another walk and make another bet?

This time they created the false Saviour Jesus Christ to fool people and turn them from the True Path.

The Old Testament has not been replaced. Christians have been taken in by a clever trick. No pork for you.
Dear Gord,

Are you suggesting Judaism is a universal religion?

Cpl Ferro
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Old 12th February 2013, 11:39 AM   #253
CplFerro
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Dear Norseman,

God didnít create sin, He created beings that chose to sin.

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Yeshua didn't live a sinless life either as far as I remember.
Name Christís sins, if you will.

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According to your apophatic Christianity, John Scot Erigena in the 9th century had said, "[w]e do not know what God is. God Himself does not know what He is because He is not anything. Literally God is not, because He transcends being."
So --- "God is not" means that no one can make any meaningful descriptions of this being -- including you. So why do you persist in telling us about God when you now quote a branch of religious philosophy which defines God out of existence?

I mean, it was amusing to read about how the apophatics were saying how God is unknowable and by that, we know him. Um... no you don't, and you don't by your own premises.
Yes, Godís mysteriousness is mystifying. That is ultimately why faith is needed to know Him.

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Just curious if you can tell us what evidence would persuade you that you were insane.
My familyís absolute disapproval of my beliefs might cause me to doubt. But, more likely they as Christians would disapprove of an action I might take and thus cause me to doubt my interpretation of religion, rather than doubt religion itself.

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But the faith itself presents the truth of Religion and so believing in that truth is hardly arrogant in a negative sense, any more than believing in the truths of Science is arrogant in a negative sense. Doesnít scientific accomplishment swell your breast?
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By this hilited phrase, you seem to be saying that all religions are true, even if contradictory. Is this correct?
I mean the Christian religion.

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Well, supposedly God made the Universe in seven days. I think weíre being over-literal about what ďdayĒ means in these places.
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Are there other places where we're being overly literal? I think the entire story (even the entire bible) isn't to be taken literally. Why would you seemingly cherry-pick one thing like 'a day' and decide that it isn't to be understood as plainly as it is written?
Well, maybe I didnít make it clear enough that I believe in evolution and astrophysics, so since the Genesis Creation account isnít crucial to my faith I am free to reevaluate it critically.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 12th February 2013, 12:51 PM   #254
Akri
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Yes, I am firmly aware of my fallibility in other regards. I have no logical explanation for my inability to believe I might be mistaken here; it reduces to the irreducible faith I have in the existence of God. Itís something Iíve pushed away and attacked lots in my life, but which I cannot expunge. I have accepted that I have faith, and further accepted the implication that said faith is a form of knowledge which precludes error. If other people have faith in the opposite (e.g. positive atheism) I cannot help but conclude they must be mistaken. Again, how they can be wrong and I canít?óbecause my faith tells me so. Probably an insufficient answer for you, but there you have it.
What if God chose to give you incorrect faith for some reason?

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Such is the nature of faith.
Not necessarily. I've met people who had faith in something, but who also accepted that they could be wrong.

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Are you infallible when you say you are fallible?
I'm not sure the concept of infallibility even applies here. If you're asking if the statement "I am fallible" is correct, then the answer is "yes." In fact, evidence of my fallibility can be found in this very thread.

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It may have been that first century Rome was the most crucial point in history for Christís ministry and Passion to occur. There may be factors weíre not aware of. History isnít a simple beast.
So all the people before then didn't need morality?

And yes, there may be factors we're not aware of. The fact that we're not aware of them is God's fault, because he never bothered to make us aware. Since lacking this information raises significant questions about God's morality, his failure to share the information with us makes him a bad teacher.

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They didnít know obedience is good and disobedience is evil, they knew only that obedience pleased God and disobedience displeased Him.
Did they? Let's see the scripture that supports this.

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Genesis doesnít say where Cainís wife came from either.
True. But it does at least say that Cain found a wife. Does it give any indication that Adam and Eve should have understood right and wrong before eating the fruit?

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We donít know Godís intonation.
It wouldn't make a difference if we did.

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Itís not Godís style to give us too much information, aside from history and preaching.
So he didn't give them the information necessary to make an informed choice (and no, saying "you'll die" isn't accurate enough for an informed decision) and then he got mad at them for not making the right choice. This really isn't dispelling my belief that God is, at best, a terrible teacher.

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Iím afraid youíve lost me.
I am asking you to clarify this statement:
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So with morality: Godís understanding of morality is perfect, and goes beyond the human instinct. Vengeance is a natural human instinct, for example, but God reserves vengeance for Himself. Hating oneís enemies likewise; God reserves hate for Himself.
I'm not asking you to come up with new analogies. I'm asking you to tell me what that quote means.

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Do you understand what I mean by God being analogous to a human personality?
Not in the context of the quote I'm asking you to clarify, no.
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Old 12th February 2013, 12:59 PM   #255
pakeha
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Dear pakeha,

An inner resonance with the Cross. Really, I think thatís what it is. One realises, unconsciously at first, oneís guilt before the Creator, and one casts about for a way even for modern man to expiate that guilt, and one encounters the Cross, which is unique across history for its portrayal of an intelligible universal atonement. And I think the gospel of love has a lot to do with this, of describing God as love, and as good, and man faces this Goodness and realises that he himself doesnít measure up, can never measure up in this life, and he feels this thing within him that wonít go away no matter how carefully logicked and empiricised it is. Eventually one either accepts this faith or denies it unto death. So, thatís what I think the value is, meriting our payment of attention.

Cpl Ferro
Are you saying the best way to return your deity's love is to accept the need for a blood sacrifice?
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Old 12th February 2013, 04:30 PM   #256
CplFerro
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Dear Akri,

Quote:
What if God chose to give you incorrect faith for some reason?
[boggles]

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Such is the nature of faith.
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Not necessarily. I've met people who had faith in something, but who also accepted that they could be wrong.
Iím sorry, I mean the faith I have.

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Are you infallible when you say you are fallible?
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I'm not sure the concept of infallibility even applies here. If you're asking if the statement "I am fallible" is correct, then the answer is "yes." In fact, evidence of my fallibility can be found in this very thread.
But, if youíre fallible, might you be mistaken in saying ďI am fallibleĒ?

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It may have been that first century Rome was the most crucial point in history for Christís ministry and Passion to occur. There may be factors weíre not aware of. History isnít a simple beast.
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So all the people before then didn't need morality?
Hmm. Does anyone need morality?

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And yes, there may be factors we're not aware of. The fact that we're not aware of them is God's fault, because he never bothered to make us aware. Since lacking this information raises significant questions about God's morality, his failure to share the information with us makes him a bad teacher.
I guess weíre dealing with ďtough love.Ē

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They didnít know obedience is good and disobedience is evil, they knew only that obedience pleased God and disobedience displeased Him.
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Did they? Let's see the scripture that supports this.
Scripture doesnít say they had five digits on each hand and foot either. Itís not a perfectly detailed record. Iím proceeding from the assumption that God makes sense.

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Genesis doesnít say where Cainís wife came from either.
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True. But it does at least say that Cain found a wife. Does it give any indication that Adam and Eve should have understood right and wrong before eating the fruit?
No.

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We donít know Godís intonation.
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It wouldn't make a difference if we did.
Hmm, perhaps not.

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Itís not Godís style to give us too much information, aside from history and preaching.
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So he didn't give them the information necessary to make an informed choice (and no, saying "you'll die" isn't accurate enough for an informed decision) and then he got mad at them for not making the right choice. This really isn't dispelling my belief that God is, at best, a terrible teacher.
In order to defend this I have to make extra-Biblical assumptions, namely that the story as written is inaccurate to the point of concealing Adam and Eveís moral maturity. So, I fold on this point. I canít defend this. Thank you for provoking me to realise this story is morally untenable.

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So with morality: Godís understanding of morality is perfect, and goes beyond the human instinct. Vengeance is a natural human instinct, for example, but God reserves vengeance for Himself. Hating oneís enemies likewise; God reserves hate for Himself.
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I'm not asking you to come up with new analogies. I'm asking you to tell me what that quote means.
It means the beatitudes--for example, ďlove thy enemyĒ is a hard commandment. It speaks a perfect standard of behaviour which only God could uphold, but which He wishes humans to attempt. There is nothing more natural in human morality than to hate he who wrongs you.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 12th February 2013, 04:36 PM   #257
CplFerro
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Dear pakeha,

The best way for me to return Godís love is to love God and love my neighbour. Those are the highest commandments. Loving God would include loving His will, would it not? Iím not sure how to express the need to accept the blood Sacrifice. Itís not a commandment, itís more of a framework for understanding and an if/then basis for salvation.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 12th February 2013, 05:06 PM   #258
Pup
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
But, if youíre fallible, might you be mistaken in saying ďI am fallibleĒ?
Fallible doesn't mean someone is wrong. It means they could be wrong. So if someone has ever thought they were right but turned out to be wrong, they've already proven they're fallible, whether or not they're right or wrong on future things.

I don't get what point you're trying to make by turning it around like that.

Some things can get turned around for nice effect:

"I'm never right." "But if you're wrong that you're never right, then you're right."

But "fallible" just doesn't work like that.
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Old 12th February 2013, 05:13 PM   #259
Akri
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
[boggles]
God works in mysterious ways, does he not? Are you telling me you know for certain that God could never have a reason to give you false faith?

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But, if youíre fallible, might you be mistaken in saying ďI am fallibleĒ?
No, because my fallibility has already been proven.

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Hmm. Does anyone need morality?
Not in the same way that we need food and water, no. However it certainly seems important to me, and much of the Bible focuses on morality. Why have that focus if morality doesn't matter, and if it does matter why would it not have mattered during the OT?

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I guess weíre dealing with ďtough love.Ē
Which is not incompatible with bad teaching.

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Iím proceeding from the assumption that God makes sense.
This seems like an odd assumption. Why would you expect God to make sense to us mere humans?

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In order to defend this I have to make extra-Biblical assumptions, namely that the story as written is inaccurate to the point of concealing Adam and Eveís moral maturity. So, I fold on this point. I canít defend this. Thank you for provoking me to realise this story is morally untenable.
You should see me argue the story of Exodus

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It means the beatitudes--for example, ďlove thy enemyĒ is a hard commandment. It speaks a perfect standard of behaviour which only God could uphold, but which He wishes humans to attempt. There is nothing more natural in human morality than to hate he who wrongs you.
OK, so when you said that God is beyond our morality you didn't mean that his morality was incomprehensible to us, only that he's better at being moral than we are, correct?
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Old 12th February 2013, 05:17 PM   #260
Gord_in_Toronto
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Dear Gord,

Are you suggesting Judaism is a universal religion?

Cpl Ferro
Nope.

I am only asking you to think.

Of course, Judaism might really be the Universal Religion. As long as you can stand the pain as they cut the end of your "winkie" off.
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Old 12th February 2013, 06:44 PM   #261
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by Pup View Post
Fallible doesn't mean someone is wrong. It means they could be wrong. So if someone has ever thought they were right but turned out to be wrong, they've already proven they're fallible, whether or not they're right or wrong on future things.

I don't get what point you're trying to make by turning it around like that.

Some things can get turned around for nice effect:

"I'm never right." "But if you're wrong that you're never right, then you're right."

But "fallible" just doesn't work like that.
Dear Pup,

If he were fallible he could make mistakes, and if so he could be making a mistake about whether he's fallible. If he is making a mistake there, he would be infallible, which is disproven by the fact that he made a mistake, making him fallible again.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 12th February 2013, 06:47 PM   #262
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by Gord_in_Toronto View Post
Nope.

I am only asking you to think.

Of course, Judaism might really be the Universal Religion. As long as you can stand the pain as they cut the end of your "winkie" off.
Dear Gord,

How could Judaism be the Universal Religion if it doesn't seek converts?... Of course they have the Noahide Laws for gentiles, so if we count that then it could be the Universal Religion.

No, the answer is Descartes: God doesn't lie.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 12th February 2013, 07:14 PM   #263
CplFerro
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Dear Akri,
Quote:
God works in mysterious ways, does he not? Are you telling me you know for certain that God could never have a reason to give you false faith?
I would have to appeal to Descarteís assertion that God does not lie.

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Hmm. Does anyone need morality?
Quote:
Not in the same way that we need food and water, no. However it certainly seems important to me, and much of the Bible focuses on morality. Why have that focus if morality doesn't matter, and if it does matter why would it not have mattered during the OT?
According to Mortimer J. Adler, we have a right to anything we need. And one of the things we need is liberty, in a political sense. It would be difficult to conceive of us not needing morality in the same way.

In that light the only answer I can surmise to your question is the love in the human heart, as the basis for a conscience which existed from time immemorial.

Unfortunately, this doesnít give a clear answer to why Christ can when, where, and how He did. I can only appeal to historical necessity and the mystery of Providence.

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I guess weíre dealing with ďtough love.Ē
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Which is not incompatible with bad teaching.
True.

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Iím proceeding from the assumption that God makes sense.
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This seems like an odd assumption. Why would you expect God to make sense to us mere humans?
Well in an apophatic sense He does not. He is beyond comprehension. But that does not mean He is irrational, only that His rationality exceeds us as the proverbial Smithsonian to the ant.

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It means the beatitudes--for example, ďlove thy enemyĒ is a hard commandment. It speaks a perfect standard of behaviour which only God could uphold, but which He wishes humans to attempt. There is nothing more natural in human morality than to hate he who wrongs you.
Quote:
OK, so when you said that God is beyond our morality you didn't mean that his morality was incomprehensible to us, only that he's better at being moral than we are, correct?
I would say Godís morality is incomprehensible only because we donít know exactly how Jesus lived His life in relation to temptation and ignorance. If we knew all about Jesusí life, we could say we comprehended God's morality fully, but since we don't, we are operating on incomplete information.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 12th February 2013, 07:35 PM   #264
Akri
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
I would have to appeal to Descarteís assertion that God does not lie.
I'm unfamiliar with that. But my initial thought is "how do we know Descarte was right?"

Quote:
According to Mortimer J. Adler, we have a right to anything we need. And one of the things we need is liberty, in a political sense. It would be difficult to conceive of us not needing morality in the same way.

In that light the only answer I can surmise to your question is the love in the human heart, as the basis for a conscience which existed from time immemorial.
I'm not sure which question this answers. It doesn't seem to answer the question of why people in OT times didn't need NT morality (note that this is me clarifying the statement in my last post, which was inaccurate).

Quote:
Unfortunately, this doesnít give a clear answer to why Christ can when, where, and how He did. I can only appeal to historical necessity and the mystery of Providence.
What kind of historical necessity could there have been that required NT morality be taught in NT times and not any earlier?

Quote:
Well in an apophatic sense He does not. He is beyond comprehension. But that does not mean He is irrational, only that His rationality exceeds us as the proverbial Smithsonian to the ant.
OK, I think I gotcha. Of course, God could do something that appears irrational, but that is actually perfectly rational if you could comprehend God, which you can't. Does that make sense?

Quote:
I would say Godís morality is incomprehensible only because we donít know exactly how Jesus lived His life in relation to temptation and ignorance. If we knew all about Jesusí life, we could say we comprehended God's morality fully, but since we don't, we are operating on incomplete information.
So it's not that we're inherently incapable of comprehending God's morality, but that we don't know enough about it?
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Old 12th February 2013, 10:13 PM   #265
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Dear Norseman,

God didnít create sin, He created beings that chose to sin.
God is the creator of everything in the universe, including the universe itself, yes? Therefore, god created sin itself. There is no escaping that fact, given your initial assumptions.



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Name Christís sins, if you will.
Working on the sabbath, disobeying his father, disrespecting his father, crippling a child, and murder to name a few.


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Yes, Godís mysteriousness is mystifying. That is ultimately why faith is needed to know Him.
No insult to you is intended, but you call it faith and I call it imagination.



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My familyís absolute disapproval of my beliefs might cause me to doubt. But, more likely they as Christians would disapprove of an action I might take and thus cause me to doubt my interpretation of religion, rather than doubt religion itself.
That's still rather vague and I'm certain you only say it because you believe it to be absolutely impossible to actually happen. I thank you nonetheless for your honest answer.



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I mean the Christian religion.
Why not other religions?



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Well, maybe I didnít make it clear enough that I believe in evolution and astrophysics, so since the Genesis Creation account isnít crucial to my faith I am free to reevaluate it critically.
What other things aren't crucial to your faith? Is the bible crucial to your faith?


Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Scripture doesnít say they had five digits on each hand and foot either. Itís not a perfectly detailed record. Iím proceeding from the assumption that God makes sense.
How can one make sense of the unknowable (as you've already described god)? The only way you can is by making stuff up that makes personal sense to you. That it doesn't make sense to others is what prompts all of these questions which you kindly answer.


Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
I would have to appeal to Descarteís assertion that God does not lie.
It's an unevidenced assertion, therefore it's ignorable.



Quote:
According to Mortimer J. Adler, we have a right to anything we need. And one of the things we need is liberty, in a political sense. It would be difficult to conceive of us not needing morality in the same way.
We have morality, we do not need it per se.



Quote:
Well in an apophatic sense He does not. He is beyond comprehension. But that does not mean He is irrational, only that His rationality exceeds us as the proverbial Smithsonian to the ant.
Of course it's irrational. Humans cannot make sense of it; it's not rationally comprehensive to humans.



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I would say Godís morality is incomprehensible only because we donít know exactly how Jesus lived His life in relation to temptation and ignorance. If we knew all about Jesusí life, we could say we comprehended God's morality fully, but since we don't, we are operating on incomplete information.
That's exactly right. There is no complete information; there is not even any rational, coherent definition of god, so it can't be rationally discussed.
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Old 13th February 2013, 04:33 AM   #266
pakeha
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Dear pakeha,

The best way for me to return God’s love is to love God and love my neighbour. Those are the highest commandments. Loving God would include loving His will, would it not? I’m not sure how to express the need to accept the blood Sacrifice. It’s not a commandment, it’s more of a framework for understanding and an if/then basis for salvation.

Cpl Ferro
Hi, Cpl Ferro.
I look at the Blood Atonement not just in the NT, but the OT and of course in the earlier religions where it appears.
So yes, I understand you when you say it's a 'context'.
In fact, I think that explains it very well, especially when you think of it in a cultural context.

So what confuses me is how an element of a cultural context becomes a divine requirement.
Since the OT post-dates other religions with the same blood requirement, how can we think blood sacrifice is anything but a borrowing from other religions?
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Old 13th February 2013, 09:22 AM   #267
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by pakeha View Post
Hi, Cpl Ferro.
I look at the Blood Atonement not just in the NT, but the OT and of course in the earlier religions where it appears.
So yes, I understand you when you say it's a 'context'.
In fact, I think that explains it very well, especially when you think of it in a cultural context.

So what confuses me is how an element of a cultural context becomes a divine requirement.
Since the OT post-dates other religions with the same blood requirement, how can we think blood sacrifice is anything but a borrowing from other religions?
Dear pakeha,

The only answer I can think of is that God spoke in the language of the times, and blood sacrifice was the most powerful cultural “phrase” He could have uttered.

This presumes faith in God and in the sinfulness of man, and therefore seeks to resolve the “divine dilemma” of God seeking to justify man without Himself becoming unjust. Casting about through history, the Atonement is what one finds fits the puzzle. The fact that it resembles other religions' practices is coincidental--both speak to the human mind powerfully, though only one solves the divine dilemma.

Does this answer you or have I misunderstood?

Cpl Ferro

Last edited by CplFerro; 13th February 2013 at 09:24 AM.
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Old 13th February 2013, 02:14 PM   #268
CplFerro
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Dear Akri,

Descartes proposes the idea of a perfect being, arguing that lying is an imperfection. That is, a perfect being would have only positive qualities, not negative ones, akin to how heat is a positive quality and cold a privation. He implied these things are so because they befit a perfect being.

Quote:
According to Mortimer J. Adler, we have a right to anything we need. And one of the things we need is liberty, in a political sense. It would be difficult to conceive of us not needing morality in the same way.

In that light the only answer I can surmise to your question is the love in the human heart, as the basis for a conscience which existed from time immemorial.
Quote:
I'm not sure which question this answers. It doesn't seem to answer the question of why people in OT times didn't need NT morality (note that this is me clarifying the statement in my last post, which was inaccurate).
Iím caught on this. I donít know. I understand an answer to your question that changes the focus of Christís sacrifice from the religious to the cultural, viz., Christ demonstrated the artistic principle of the Sublime, or transcendence of tragedy though a sacrifice intended to benefit all mankind. But that doesnít explain the religious aspect qua religious in which Christís message is a good to be delivered to all mankind. All I can suggest is the harrowing of Hell described in 1 Peter 4:6. Of course, this doesnít explain why anyone should not simply receive said message upon death, instead of all this business of proselytisation and conversion...unless the point of the Christian religion is to so advance the cultural and as a rider advance the religoius purpose of man. Is this clear?

Quote:
Unfortunately, this doesnít give a clear answer to why Christ can when, where, and how He did. I can only appeal to historical necessity and the mystery of Providence.
Quote:
What kind of historical necessity could there have been that required NT morality be taught in NT times and not any earlier?
A friend of mine who studies history and religion described Christ as needing to come during the Roman Empire so that Christianity would inhabit the shell of Rome and be ready to spread, rather than dying out like so many other religions.

Quote:
Well in an apophatic sense He does not. He is beyond comprehension. But that does not mean He is irrational, only that His rationality exceeds us as the proverbial Smithsonian to the ant.
Quote:
OK, I think I gotcha. Of course, God could do something that appears irrational, but that is actually perfectly rational if you could comprehend God, which you can't. Does that make sense?
Yes.

Quote:
I would say Godís morality is incomprehensible only because we donít know exactly how Jesus lived His life in relation to temptation and ignorance. If we knew all about Jesusí life, we could say we comprehended God's morality fully, but since we don't, we are operating on incomplete information.
Quote:
So it's not that we're inherently incapable of comprehending God's morality, but that we don't know enough about it?
If weíre made in His image it would seem a bit of a farce if we couldnít comprehend His morality, wouldnít it?

But I know where youíre going with this: If the only reason we donít fully comprehend Godís morality is a lack of information, then why didnít He give us this information? My submission to you here is the same historical necessity I mentioned above, that Christ was only going to spread His message once in a specific time and place, and humanity would have to work out its destiny in that light.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 13th February 2013, 02:49 PM   #269
Akri
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Descartes proposes the idea of a perfect being, arguing that lying is an imperfection. That is, a perfect being would have only positive qualities, not negative ones, akin to how heat is a positive quality and cold a privation. He implied these things are so because they befit a perfect being.
Ah, I think I had heard of that before. It raises the question of whether God is perfect by definition (meaning anything he does is defined as "perfect" merely because he does it) or if he is perfect because he adheres to a standard of perfection. I'm thinking you believe in the second option based on what you've said earlier, but I want to make sure.

Quote:
Iím caught on this. I donít know. I understand an answer to your question that changes the focus of Christís sacrifice from the religious to the cultural, viz., Christ demonstrated the artistic principle of the Sublime, or transcendence of tragedy though a sacrifice intended to benefit all mankind. But that doesnít explain the religious aspect qua religious in which Christís message is a good to be delivered to all mankind. All I can suggest is the harrowing of Hell described in 1 Peter 4:6. Of course, this doesnít explain why anyone should not simply receive said message upon death, instead of all this business of proselytisation and conversion...unless the point of the Christian religion is to so advance the cultural and as a rider advance the religoius purpose of man. Is this clear?
I'm not entirely sure if I'm understanding this, but part of that might be that I fried my brain earlier trying to understand how redstone calculators work in Minecraft. I'll mull it over and get back to you.

Quote:
A friend of mine who studies history and religion described Christ as needing to come during the Roman Empire so that Christianity would inhabit the shell of Rome and be ready to spread, rather than dying out like so many other religions.
If God was a more limited being this explanation might work for me. As it stands, though, it really doesn't fit. Why would God be limited to sending his message just once? The Bible shows him sending lots of messages to lots of people, so why couldn't he do the same with the NT messages of love and forgiveness? He could have sent it to multiple prophets at multiple times and places. Any time a religion died out, he could just make sure that whoever started the next one got his messages as well. While he was at it he could have made people aware of the benefits of hand-washing as well.

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If weíre made in His image it would seem a bit of a farce if we couldnít comprehend His morality, wouldnít it?
I guess that depends on what "in his image" means. If it just means that we look like him then no, but if it means we're supposed to be mini-Gods then yeah, it wouldn't make sense for us to not understand him.

Quote:
But I know where youíre going with this: If the only reason we donít fully comprehend Godís morality is a lack of information, then why didnít He give us this information? My submission to you here is the same historical necessity I mentioned above, that Christ was only going to spread His message once in a specific time and place, and humanity would have to work out its destiny in that light.
My response is basically the same as above: this seems like an arbitrary limitation for God to have. I mean, it seems like I have fewer limitations for spreading messages than God had with this one. Granted I have the internet, but God is the Almighty. The power of the internet should be laughable compared to God's ability to send a message.
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Old 13th February 2013, 04:19 PM   #270
CplFerro
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Dear Norseman,

Quote:
God didnít create sin, He created beings that chose to sin.
Quote:
God is the creator of everything in the universe, including the universe itself, yes? Therefore, god created sin itself. There is no escaping that fact, given your initial assumptions.
If your parent offsprings you, and you grow up to be a murderer, is your parent guilty of murder?

What you are saying is that God canít create freely-willed beings. I disagree.

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Working on the sabbath, disobeying his father, disrespecting his father, crippling a child, and murder to name a few.
The Sabbath one, well, you got me there, but it turns out God allowed Christ to add a rabbinical clarification to that lawís scope.

When did Christ disobey or disrespect His father, cripple a child, or commit murder?

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Yes, Godís mysteriousness is mystifying. That is ultimately why faith is needed to know Him.
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No insult to you is intended, but you call it faith and I call it imagination.
None taken. Yes, I can accept faith as a species of imagination.

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I mean the Christian religion.
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Why not other religions?
My faith isnít of other religions.

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Well, maybe I didnít make it clear enough that I believe in evolution and astrophysics, so since the Genesis Creation account isnít crucial to my faith I am free to reevaluate it critically.
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What other things aren't crucial to your faith? Is the bible crucial to your faith?
My faith comprises three things:

(1) Belief in a meaningful, personal Creator,
(2) Belief in the existence of sin alienating man from said Creator, and
(3) Belief in the existence of an Atonement for sin.

Insofar as the Bible delivered this message to me, that part of it is crucial. Everything else as far as I can tell is up for grabs.

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Scripture doesnít say they had five digits on each hand and foot either. Itís not a perfectly detailed record. Iím proceeding from the assumption that God makes sense.
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How can one make sense of the unknowable (as you've already described god)? The only way you can is by making stuff up that makes personal sense to you. That it doesn't make sense to others is what prompts all of these questions which you kindly answer.
Reasoning based on what faith provides in light of what the rest of the world provides.

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I would have to appeal to Descarteís assertion that God does not lie.
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It's an unevidenced assertion, therefore it's ignorable.
As is faith.

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According to Mortimer J. Adler, we have a right to anything we need. And one of the things we need is liberty, in a political sense. It would be difficult to conceive of us not needing morality in the same way.
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We have morality, we do not need it per se.
Iím speaking of need in a political sense. In order to be effective politically we need liberty. In order to be effective in promoting the good we need morality.

[quote]Well in an apophatic sense He does not. He is beyond comprehension. But that does not mean He is irrational, only that His rationality exceeds us as the proverbial Smithsonian to the ant.
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Of course it's irrational. Humans cannot make sense of it; it's not rationally comprehensive to humans.
Is calculus irrational if a mentally retarded person cannot comprehend it?

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I would say Godís morality is incomprehensible only because we donít know exactly how Jesus lived His life in relation to temptation and ignorance. If we knew all about Jesusí life, we could say we comprehended God's morality fully, but since we don't, we are operating on incomplete information.
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Thatís exactly right. There is no complete information; there is not even any rational, coherent definition of god, so it can't be rationally discussed.
As best I can tell, it can only be discussed with reason augmenting faith.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 13th February 2013, 07:41 PM   #271
JoeTheJuggler
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Well, Gawdzilla, the KJV seems popular enough. I've heard of some people insisting it's the only valid verson. If the KJV fell it would be a blow to Christianity.
Are you not aware of the irony of your answer (and therefore the point, I believe, of Gawdzilla's question)?

Why choose the KJV as evidence of the unadulterated Bible when it disagrees in many particulars with many other versions of the Bible? The fact that there are so many versions is itself evidence against the claim you're offering the Dead Sea Scrolls as evidence of.

FWIW, the single largest flavor of Christianity, the RCC, rejects the KJV.
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Old 14th February 2013, 03:29 AM   #272
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Dear pakeha,

The only answer I can think of is that God spoke in the language of the times, and blood sacrifice was the most powerful cultural ďphraseĒ He could have uttered.

This presumes faith in God and in the sinfulness of man, and therefore seeks to resolve the ďdivine dilemmaĒ of God seeking to justify man without Himself becoming unjust. Casting about through history, the Atonement is what one finds fits the puzzle. The fact that it resembles other religions' practices is coincidental--both speak to the human mind powerfully, though only one solves the divine dilemma.

Does this answer you or have I misunderstood?

Cpl Ferro
The other cultures also made the presumption of faith in a deity or deities, so how can of all the religions which employ blood sacrifice, only the judeo-christian tradition is the correct one?
How can it be co-incidental that the NT is posited on direct borrowings from other religions?
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Old 14th February 2013, 04:27 AM   #273
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Dear Multivac,

Anyone who wishes reconciliation with God implicitly wishes to know Jesus.
Why would anyone want reconciliation with god? Why do you feel the need to be reconciled with him/her/it?

Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Faith immunises me to disproofs of God, but they still interest me. What is your disproof of Godís existence?
Interesting. I find that the real world immunises me to fairy tales and believing in non-existent deities. It is impossible to prove that something doesn't exist, but there is no proof of god, so the chances of god existing are too vanishingly small to worry about. God can be compared to Unicorns. There are stories about Unicorns, and stories about god, but there is no proof that either of them exist. The bible is not proof of the existence of god.

Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
I donít know why God flooded the world, according to that story (though itís my understanding that the extreme majority of geologists donít believe there was a Flood).
There is no geological proof of the flood, because it did not happen. It is just a fairy story.


Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
The Bible is the most reproduced book from two to three thousand years ago.
Except that it wasn't written two thousand years ago. It is a collection of stories and anecdotes of events that supposedly took place thousands of years ago, but they were not written at the time. Also, the bible has been constantly rewritten and retranslated.


Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Why would a just parent demand anything?

Cpl Ferro
Nice reversal. Obviously parents make demands of their children, but they don't usually behave towards them in the same way as your god in the bible. A good parent will teach their children to respect others and to think for themselves, so that they can understand how the world works rather than rely on "god did it" as an answer to everything.
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Old 14th February 2013, 05:47 AM   #274
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Cpl Ferro, above where you state that god created beings with free will I believe that you are misunderstanding the point. If your all powerful god created the universe and everything in it, then he created the concept of sin, and the ability to perform the actions that lead to a sin. In other and simpler words god created sin. The nature of man and his ability to choose to sin or otherwise is a different argument.
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Old 14th February 2013, 11:30 AM   #275
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Dear Akri,

Quote:
Descartes proposes the idea of a perfect being, arguing that lying is an imperfection. That is, a perfect being would have only positive qualities, not negative ones, akin to how heat is a positive quality and cold a privation. He implied these things are so because they befit a perfect being.
Quote:
Ah, I think I had heard of that before. It raises the question of whether God is perfect by definition (meaning anything he does is defined as "perfect" merely because he does it) or if he is perfect because he adheres to a standard of perfection. I'm thinking you believe in the second option based on what you've said earlier, but I want to make sure.
God would have to be the standard of perfection, since there is nothing higher than God that rules Him. What He does is perfect not merely because He does it, but because He embodies the ideal that humans aspire to.

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A friend of mine who studies history and religion described Christ as needing to come during the Roman Empire so that Christianity would inhabit the shell of Rome and be ready to spread, rather than dying out like so many other religions.
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If God was a more limited being this explanation might work for me. As it stands, though, it really doesn't fit. Why would God be limited to sending his message just once? The Bible shows him sending lots of messages to lots of people, so why couldn't he do the same with the NT messages of love and forgiveness? He could have sent it to multiple prophets at multiple times and places. Any time a religion died out, he could just make sure that whoever started the next one got his messages as well. While he was at it he could have made people aware of the benefits of hand-washing as well.
According to the Catholic Church, God has made numerous miracles down through the ages, but aside from that we should realise that Christ will only come once in history, so it had better be a point of maximum alteration for society. All I can offer beyond this is that God is a God of parsimony.

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If weíre made in His image it would seem a bit of a farce if we couldnít comprehend His morality, wouldnít it?
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I guess that depends on what "in his image" means. If it just means that we look like him then no, but if it means we're supposed to be mini-Gods then yeah, it wouldn't make sense for us to not understand him.
Well, I understand it to be mental image. We are the only species capable of reading a book.

Quote:
But I know where youíre going with this: If the only reason we donít fully comprehend Godís morality is a lack of information, then why didnít He give us this information? My submission to you here is the same historical necessity I mentioned above, that Christ was only going to spread His message once in a specific time and place, and humanity would have to work out its destiny in that light.
Quote:
My response is basically the same as above: this seems like an arbitrary limitation for God to have. I mean, it seems like I have fewer limitations for spreading messages than God had with this one. Granted I have the internet, but God is the Almighty. The power of the internet should be laughable compared to God's ability to send a message.
Itís inconvenient for us, but, that seems to be the human lot.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 14th February 2013, 11:32 AM   #276
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by JoeTheJuggler View Post
Are you not aware of the irony of your answer (and therefore the point, I believe, of Gawdzilla's question)?

Why choose the KJV as evidence of the unadulterated Bible when it disagrees in many particulars with many other versions of the Bible? The fact that there are so many versions is itself evidence against the claim you're offering the Dead Sea Scrolls as evidence of.

FWIW, the single largest flavor of Christianity, the RCC, rejects the KJV.
No, Joe, I don't see the irony.

I mentioned the KJV because it is reasonably popular.

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Old 14th February 2013, 11:36 AM   #277
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by pakeha View Post
The other cultures also made the presumption of faith in a deity or deities, so how can of all the religions which employ blood sacrifice, only the judeo-christian tradition is the correct one?
How can it be co-incidental that the NT is posited on direct borrowings from other religions?
Dear pakeha,

The correctness of Judaism I canít speak to. The correctness of Christianity comes from the concept of God sacrificing Himself to save His creatures from His wrath. No other religion to my knowledge features this. Without this concept Christianity is just another human sacrifice cult. That it borrows tropes from other religions is of no more concern than the fact it borrowed the idea of writing from other cultures.

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Old 14th February 2013, 12:20 PM   #278
CplFerro
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Dear Multivac,

Quote:
Anyone who wishes reconciliation with God implicitly wishes to know Jesus.
Quote:
Why would anyone want reconciliation with god? Why do you feel the need to be reconciled with him/her/it?
Fear. And a desire for the Beatific Vision, the vision of Godís glory.

Quote:
Faith immunises me to disproofs of God, but they still interest me. What is your disproof of Godís existence?
Quote:
Interesting. I find that the real world immunises me to fairy tales and believing in non-existent deities. It is impossible to prove that something doesn't exist, but there is no proof of god, so the chances of god existing are too vanishingly small to worry about. God can be compared to Unicorns. There are stories about Unicorns, and stories about god, but there is no proof that either of them exist. The bible is not proof of the existence of god.
I disagree--cannot somethingís existence be disproven if it can be shown to be a logical contradiction? You might find it more satisfying if you found a logical disproof of God rather than an empirical one.

Quote:
There is no geological proof of the flood, because it did not happen. It is just a fairy story.
I agree.

Quote:
The Bible is the most reproduced book from two to three thousand years ago.
Quote:
Except that it wasn't written two thousand years ago. It is a collection of stories and anecdotes of events that supposedly took place thousands of years ago, but they were not written at the time. Also, the bible has been constantly rewritten and retranslated.
True. The NT dates to Iím guessing 200-300 ADÖ{wikipedia power!}Ö ďAll of the works which would eventually be incorporated into the New Testament would seem to have been written no later than around AD 150.Ē

So, itís been around a long time. Is there any book thatís been around as long or longer that has been reproduced more times?

Quote:
Why would a just parent demand anything?
Quote:
Nice reversal. Obviously parents make demands of their children, but they don't usually behave towards them in the same way as your god in the bible. A good parent will teach their children to respect others and to think for themselves, so that they can understand how the world works rather than rely on "god did it" as an answer to everything.
God didnít give us the scientific method or the modern concept of individual freedom, no. But the bases for these things are included in the sweep of Judeo-Christian history (e.g. the humanisation of women in the OT and NT, humans made in the image of God, the primacy of love, the absorption of Greek wisdom). So, God is a harsh teacher, content with the slow evolution of society rather than immediate fait accompli. Why this is so, I do not know.

Cpl Ferro
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Old 14th February 2013, 12:23 PM   #279
CplFerro
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Originally Posted by Parsman View Post
Cpl Ferro, above where you state that god created beings with free will I believe that you are misunderstanding the point. If your all powerful god created the universe and everything in it, then he created the concept of sin, and the ability to perform the actions that lead to a sin. In other and simpler words god created sin. The nature of man and his ability to choose to sin or otherwise is a different argument.
Dear Parsman,

God created the potential for sin to occur, and knowing that it would, allowed it. We might blame Him for that allowance, but the principle blame goes to the perpetrator.

Imagine if you had a friend who planned to commit a crime and you knew your friend well enough you could predict the particulars of his crime. When he commits his crime, are you to blame for not stopping him?

Cpl Ferro
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Old 14th February 2013, 01:36 PM   #280
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Originally Posted by CplFerro View Post
Dear Gord,

How could Judaism be the Universal Religion if it doesn't seek converts?... Of course they have the Noahide Laws for gentiles, so if we count that then it could be the Universal Religion.

No, the answer is Descartes: God doesn't lie.

Cpl Ferro

Seek and ye shall find. Ask and the way shall be open unto you. Judaism is God's Truth and you don't have to be brainwashed into it as a child. Nor is proselytizing required.

If you would be a real seeker after truth, it is necessary that at least once in your life you doubt, as far as possible, all things. Rene Descartes
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