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Featured A Question for Christians

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by joe1776, Oct 8, 2018.

  1. Shiranui117

    Shiranui117 Pronounced Shee-ra-noo-ee
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    God isn't limited in how He can communicate with us. But we're very limited in the forms of communication that we can understand. God is omniscient. We are not. This isn't rocket science. I'm not sure why you can't grasp such a very simple concept.

    Letting us know that He exists and teaching us as much as we can know about Him as possible are two very, very different things. If God wishes to reveal Himself to us as Trinity, we need Him to use human language if we're going to understand an idea so complex.
     
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  2. David T

    David T Well-Known Member
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    To confuse religious idiots and then make them the experts for the non religious. idiots, and to give rise to religious forums!!!!!
     
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  3. sealchan

    sealchan Well-Known Member

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    I don't believe in an all-knowing God and to the extent that the Bible is rationally consistent, I don't think the Bible does either.

    Having watched plenty of Star Trek I am satisfied with a God who is a powerful enough alien to have created the Universe...like the Wormhole Aliens in DS9 "What is this...time?"
     
  4. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    I see. Well, my question in the OP was directed to mainstream Christians. I haven't seen a poll but I think most of the believe God to be all-knowing and all-powerful.
     
  5. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    So, it was a success then?:)
     
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  6. David T

    David T Well-Known Member
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    God works in mysterious ways!!!!! Monty pythons take on religious forums debate between the religious and the secular!!!!! This works out as perfect exame of the debates around here for me.
     
    #46 David T, Oct 8, 2018
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  7. savagewind

    savagewind Veteran Member
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    I thought that too.
    I think it was for teaching some of us to make the search and to learn to ask questions of Heaven. Also, a by-product of it is to set some of us free from the self-proclaimed religious authorities.

    1. Question
    2. Search
    and
    3. Rebel

    The Bible is for QSR
     
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  8. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    So, what you're saying is that God isn't limited in how He can communicate with us but we might not understand Him. And that makes sense to you?

    If God wanted to convey the idea of the Trinity to us, He could use images rather than words:

    In 1890, at the 25th anniversary of the benzene structure discovery, Friedrich August Kekulé, a German chemist, reminisced about his major accomplishments and told of two dreams that he had at key moments of his work. In his first dream, in 1865, he saw atoms dance around and link to one another. He awakened and immediately began to sketch what he saw in his dream.

    Later, Kekulé had another dream, in which he saw atoms dance around, then form themselves into strings, moving about in a snake-like fashion. This vision continued until the snake of atoms formed itself into an image of a snake eating its own tail. This dream gave Kekulé the idea of the cyclic structure of benzene1.
     
    #48 joe1776, Oct 8, 2018
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  9. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    Aren't most of the self-proclaimed religious authorities in the West claiming they alone can tell us what the scripture means?
     
  10. savagewind

    savagewind Veteran Member
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    They gather gullible people to themselves, which I think should be a sin, but I am not aware of many who claim to be "alone" able to tell us what scriptures mean.
     
  11. Axe Elf

    Axe Elf Prophet

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    I don't get all the contentiousness.

    You had a question for Christians, a Christian answered it, you needed clarification, and clarification was provided, and yet you're still carrying on. Is there going to be a point at which you let the question lie answered, or is this to be just a never-ending string of questions like a child asking "Why?" to every answer given?

    A moral conscience, like most everything else, is initially dependent on parental and societal "do's" and "don'ts" for its development. We know that this is so, because a moral conscience is not innately independent of culture and upbringing. Some of the "do's" and "don'ts" are communicated by way of language, and some are communicated by way of role modeling (personal experience), but we have no evidence of a moral conscience developing spontaneously in the absence of either. God has used both methods to instill His moral codes in those He chose to value them--but it seemed you were merely addressing the methods involving ancient verbiage in your question.

    If you are allowing the fact that God's message is communicated with us on an ongoing basis in experiential ways other than written and/or verbal language, then that is a denial of the position underlying your initial question--that God's message is dependent on the language of Biblical texts written long ago. I was merely addressing the question as written, as to why God would have used the language of the time to convey His verbal message.

    Not at all. It assumes that an un-omnipotent human is limited in the ways it can understand God, which seems probable. When it comes to gaining knowledge, we are pretty much limited to personal experience, the testimony of others regarding their own personal experience (via language), and knowledge obtained by formal reasoning (which is also dependent upon language), so it's not too hard to understand why language and personal experience are the two ways that God is most likely to communicate with us.

    I don't know about "any number," but I do know about the three ways we are able to gain knowledge as outlined above, and He certainly uses all three of those. I mean, I wouldn't go so far as to say that God "wrote to us" in ANY of the languages of the sacred texts, but He did inspire people to testify ABOUT their own personal experiences of Him and formal reasonings about Him in the languages with which they were familiar--and those experiences, reasonings and writings continue to this day.
     
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  12. Shiranui117

    Shiranui117 Pronounced Shee-ra-noo-ee
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    I'm saying that the limited ways that we can understand God are limits on our end, not on God's. He is not restrained in His ability or knowledge, but we are limited in our comprehension to understand Him. A swimmer teaching a toddler how to swim knows lots about swimming and is perfectly capable of giving in-depth physics-based and biomechanical explanations, but the toddler's limited intellect means that it is only capable of understanding the swimmer if said swimmer uses certain means of explaining things.

    The use of images assumes that one understands what the images are supposed to represent. In the example you posted, it was a trained chemist who was interpreting those dreams. Had a regular Joe off the street had the same dream, he would have dismissed it as a random sequence of shapes.

    When you see a swastika, you probably think of Nazism. When anybody who existed prior to the 1920's saw a swastika, they saw a symbol for good fortune, blessing, or the sun. When you see a red octagon, you automatically think "Stop". Somebody who lived prior to the late 1800's wouldn't get the memo. In the Book of Genesis, for example, when Pharaoh was having his dreams with all the imagery of the healthy and strong wheat being eaten by the sickly wheat, he needed Joseph to tell him that his dream meant there would be seven years of plenty followed by seven years of famine and thus he should make sure he stores enough grain to last through the famine, because he couldn't figure it out himself.
     
    #52 Shiranui117, Oct 8, 2018
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  13. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    I called your statement "hair-splitting because I thought you were splitting hairs: There is no significant difference between asking Christians "What was an all-knowing God's purpose..." and asking "What do Christians believe was an all-knowing God's purpose..."

    You don't seem to be following the discussion.

    You're wrong about this. Your view reflects the popular myth that we are taught right and wrong as children. There is both logic and science refuting the idea.

    I don't recognize my question in what you wrote. Here it is again as a reminder:

    What was an all-knowing God's purpose in inspiring men to write the Bible in a language destined to become obsolete, mistranslated and misinterpreted?

    What difference does it make that our usual ways of understanding are limited? If you felt God's loving presence within you just once in your life, then you'd know of His existence.That would be far more persuasive as evidence that someone claiming that God exists and asking you to have faith. If God exists and wanted its existence known to all humans, would inspiring the announcement in Ancient Hebrew really make sense for an all-powerful Creator?
     
    #53 joe1776, Oct 8, 2018
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  14. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    You aren't making sense. An all-knowing God would know how to communicate so that we would understand His message.

    That's right and if God communicated with us in images, we would feel right when we had it right and feel wrong when we had it wrong. That would be no great trick for God.

    Conscience works that way. If a soldier is ordered to kill civilians, he will feel the wrongness of that act immediately. Since he has free will, he could carry out the order only to be nagged by his conscience whenever he remembered the incident later in life.
     
  15. Shiranui117

    Shiranui117 Pronounced Shee-ra-noo-ee
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    So post it and prove that it isn't simply children knowing that they're doing something forbidden or encouraged by their parents.

    Such an experience is far from being sufficient evidence of a God, even for certain people who have that experience themselves. They could chalk that experience up to a number of physiological or circumstantial causes. Even many Christians are unsure at times whether thoughts that come to them are from their own consciousness, God, or a bit of both.
     
  16. Shiranui117

    Shiranui117 Pronounced Shee-ra-noo-ee
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    Yes, and that way is to utilize any of the many, many languages that have developed over the millennia. He just so happened to pick Hebrew and Aramaic for the Old Testament (the languages spoken by a nation at the confluence of multiple major world powers at the time), and Greek for the New Testament (a language widely spoken and utilized in trade by one of the largest empires the world has ever seen, and an empire which also had trade routes with nations as far away as China).

    So we could either have God play Pictionary with every single one of us for decades on end, or God could use human languages to convey His message, which people can learn rapidly and also help each other understand. Which one sounds more efficient to you?

    Yes, because that soldier was taught prior to entering the military that killing people for no good reason is murder. The Vikings, Mongols and other raiding peoples had no such qualms in killing non-combatants to establish their dominion over a new territory or suppress a rebellion. You're attempting to impose a 21st-century moral code backwards in time onto cultures which fundamentally did not share those values, and thus demonstrating an ignorance of cultures and moral codes outside of your own.
     
  17. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    No, I'm not going take my thread off-topic. but here's a little science . There's lots more.‘Just Babies: The Origins of Good and Evil,’ by Paul Bloom

    If a Loving Creator exists, and wanted its presence to be known. Its presence would be known by every human being. So, either this Loving Creator doesn't exist or it has a celestial reason for not wanting its presence known -- in which case, it doesn't need to be worshiped like an arrogant human king.
     
  18. Axe Elf

    Axe Elf Prophet

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    Ok, so it will be the never-ending series of "whys" then. I will leave you to digest my answer to your question to the best of your ability to comprehend it.

    In the end, though, I agree that the personal experience of God is far more persuasive as evidence of God's existence. I believe the sacred texts of the world--and other inspired writings throughout history--should be more "for further study" once God's existence has been experienced by those to which He reveals Himself, rather than proof of His existence in the absence of personal experience.
     
  19. Axe Elf

    Axe Elf Prophet

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    I looked at this, since it originally related to my assertion of moral relativity. I'm curious if you actually read the book review you posted, since it seems to conclude the exact opposite of what you are asserting--namely, that the innateness of morality remains speculative.


    Your statement isn't logical as written. Let me clean it up for you:

    If a Loving omnipotent Creator exists, and wanted its presence to be known by every human being, its presence would be known by every human being. So, either this Loving omnipotent Creator doesn't exist or it has a celestial reason for not wanting its presence known by every human being...

    Given that those ancient texts say things like...

    And He said, This is why I told you that no one can come to Me unless it is granted him [unless he is enabled to do so] by the Father. --John 6:65 (Amplified Bible)

    ...and...

    And when the Gentiles heard this, they rejoiced and glorified (praised and gave thanks for) the Word of God; and as many as were destined (appointed and ordained) to eternal life believed (adhered to, trusted in, and relied on Jesus as the Christ and their Savior). --Acts 13:48 (Amplified Bible)

    ...and...

    We are assured and know that [God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose. For those whom He foreknew [of whom He was aware and loved beforehand], He also destined from the beginning [foreordaining them] to be molded into the image of His Son [and share inwardly His likeness], that He might become the firstborn among many brethren. And those whom He thus foreordained, He also called; and those whom He called, He also justified (acquitted, made righteous, putting them into right standing with Himself). And those whom He justified, He also glorified [raising them to a heavenly dignity and condition or state of being]. --Romans 8:28-30 (Amplified Bible)

    ...and...

    Even as [in His love] He chose us [actually picked us out for Himself as His own] in Christ before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy (consecrated and set apart for Him) and blameless in His sight, even above reproach, before Him in love. For He foreordained us (destined us, planned in love for us) to be adopted (revealed) as His own children through Jesus Christ, in accordance with the purpose of His will [because it pleased Him and was His kind intent] --Ephesians 1:4-5 (Amplified Bible)

    ...and...

    Therefore God sends upon them a misleading influence, a working of error and a strong delusion to make them believe what is false, in order that all may be judged and condemned who did not believe in [who refused to adhere to, trust in, and rely on] the Truth, but [instead] took pleasure in unrighteousness. But we, brethren beloved by the Lord, ought and are obligated [as those who are in debt] to give thanks always to God for you, because God chose you from the beginning as His firstfruits (first converts) for salvation through the sanctifying work of the [Holy] Spirit and [your] belief in (adherence to, trust in, and reliance on) the Truth. --2 Thessalonians 2:11-13 (Amplified Bible)

    ...I think it is probably the latter.
     
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  20. joe1776

    joe1776 Well-Known Member

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    And that's why Christians almost unanimously agree on the meaning of the scriptures and have worked in such close harmony throughout the ages?

    I don't know why you think Pictionary, as you describe it, would be the only other option available to an all-knowing God. However, I don't know how anything could be more useless to human understanding than old, mistranslated documents.

    No soldiers aren't taught that because who's to say what is a good reason. Soldiers are trained to follow orders or there will be hell to pay. After Nuremberg the USA military said the soldier should refuse "unlawful" orders. But what orders are unlawful? The soldier has to follow his conscience and hope the order he refuses is unlawful.
     
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