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Featured Lies and Phony Caricatures of Christianity

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by usfan, May 28, 2019.

  1. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    I agree.
     
  2. oldbadger

    oldbadger Skanky Old Mongrel!

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    Question.
    Excuse my ignorance, but what is a progressive in the context of the OPs criticisms, and your own title?
     
  3. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    I think the OP would consider anyone "progressive" who does not take the texts literalistically, who does not imbue the texts with being "God's words" that fell out of the sky in King James English one day. A progressive would be one who avails her or himself of the best modern scholarship, who sees the texts for what they are, not for what we might wish them to be. A progressive would acknowledge the disparities and errors in the texts, would recognize that the authors aren't always what tradition tells us, would see the texts as one part of the whole verbal tradition of the church. A progressive tends to focus on the justice, equity, and hospitality aspects of the faith, and tends to see polity and doctrine as a more fluid thing, rather than the set in stone benchmarks that less progressive folks see them as. IOW, we would be quicker to allow that truth is larger than any one sect has in their possession. We each have a piece of the "God puzzle," and we need the other sects to form a more holistic picture of God. No one has THE TRUTH. Progressives would acknowledge the large grey area that comprises the theological landscape.

    I am an ordained minister with standing in my denomination, and would be recognized as such by several other denominations. I hold an M.Div. from a fully-accredited graduate seminary.
     
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  4. oldbadger

    oldbadger Skanky Old Mongrel!

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    The true fundamentalist and extremist....? And so dangerous in the past, today and for the future.
    Link all that to a belief in predestined grace of God and we find a truly psychotic mindset which can cherry-pick whatever verses from God are required to support and defend any actions undertaken in any direction, for any reason.
    And when asked about any one verse which contends against or conflicts with any other they can chuck the devil's badge on the table as some kind of Trump card. Oh dear........

    Now that's what I'm enjoying reading about. We do have some Progressive Churches and Christian groups here, one of them possibly belonging to your denomination (?).

    The majority of Christianity here has long been what I call 'small-C' or 'social Christianity' which means (to me) that many folks will tick the 'Christian' box in, say, a hospital reception questionnaire but who haven't been to a church since the last wedding, funeral or social baptism. This might actually have been good for Progressive Christianity because it could have encouraged Churches to look again at their Faith and Creed with a view to attracting believers back in to their midst.

    I am not a Christian but I like to talk with Christians because, in the past, a single sentence spoken can propel me on to new discovery in my searches for more definition about the time, place, persons and campaigns of both the Baptist and Jesus. Because of this I often visit Churches on their tea mornings and just enjoy Christian company. Our local Baptist Church holds a cafe-morning every Friday and anybody can walk in, sit down, buy a cake and drink and converse. The Priest earned a theology degree before studying for their particular Creed, and then served as a supporting minister for two years before being sent to this local Church. A seven year journey ......... and definitely a progressive church and minister.


    That's excellent........ I don't have any theological qualifications, but I taught commercial detectives for a long time and when in the field became used to being a lone operative. So my searches in to Jesus and the Baptist have found their way in to some strange and lonely areas, for sure.

    If it is ok to do so, please do tell us about your denomination.
     
  5. Shadow Wolf

    Shadow Wolf Rival's Wife

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    They really shouldn't be, and only do because of poor translation quality. In reality, the original word probably refers to a now-extinct ox that actually had two words.
     
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  6. usfan

    usfan Well-Known Member

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    I'm still here.. just occupied with other things.. work and life does interfere with my posting time! ;)
    L8r
     
  7. sooda

    sooda Veteran Member

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    This?

    Aurochs, (Bos primigenius), also spelled auroch, extinct wild ox of Europe, family Bovidae (order Artiodactyla), from which cattle are probably descended. The aurochs survived in central Poland until 1627.
     
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  8. Subduction Zone

    Subduction Zone Veteran Member

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    Then could you please define what you mean by "errors" etc. so that clear examples could be given. I would think that a flood that never happened would count as an error, but that does not seem to be the with you. If one has an overly restrictive definition of what an error is there may be none. But by that standard 2 + 2 = 5 is not an error either.
     
  9. sooda

    sooda Veteran Member

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    The flood myth can't really be called an "error". Its inclusion and use is very deliberate.. Its a teaching narrative.

    It really is a wonderful story.. That's why they borrowed it from the Babylonians.
     
  10. It Aint Necessarily So

    It Aint Necessarily So Well-Known Member
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    Closed-mindedness characterizes faith-based thought. To be open-minded, one has to be willing and able to dispassionately and impartially consider the evidence under the light of reason and be willing to be convinced by a compelling argument. That's something that doesn't happen with the faith-based thinker, which is why if he is wrong, even if there is compelling evidence that that is the case, it won't sway him. He didn't use evidence to get to his faith-based belief, and evidence won't budge it for him.

    Compare these two modes of processing information to decide what is true about the world.
    • The moderator in the debate between science educator Bill Nye and Christian creationist Ken Ham on creationism as a viable scientific field of study asked, "What would change your minds?" Nye answered, "Evidence." Ham answered, "Nothing. I'm a Christian.” Elsewhere, Ham stated, “By definition, no apparent, perceived or claimed evidence in any field, including history and chronology, can be valid if it contradicts the scriptural record."
    Nye can be convinced if he is wrong and it can be demonstrated. He will see that. Ham will not.How are you going to penetrate that mind with evidence that he is wrong if he is wrong? You're not. That mind is closed for business.

    Here's another example of somebody proudly declaring that he is cut off from evidence that contradicts his beliefs:
    • "The way in which I know Christianity is true is first and foremost on the basis of the witness of the Holy Spirit in my heart. And this gives me a self-authenticating means of knowing Christianity is true wholly apart from the evidence. And therefore, even if in some historically contingent circumstances the evidence that I have available to me should turn against Christianity, I do not think that this controverts the witness of the Holy Spirit. In such a situation, I should regard that as simply a result of the contingent circumstances that I'm in, and that if I were to pursue this with due diligence and with time, I would discover that the evidence, if in fact I could get the correct picture, would support exactly what the witness of the Holy Spirit tells me. So I think that's very important to get the relationship between faith and reason right..." - William Lane Craig
    I have several more examples of people proudly claiming as if it were a virtue that they are cut off from contradictory evidence. Here's a guy telling us something pretty shocking about how badly he has cornered himself with faith-based thought:
    • “If somewhere in the Bible I were to find a passage that said 2 + 2 = 5, I wouldn't question what I am reading in the Bible. I would believe it, accept it as true, and do my best to work it out and understand it."- Pastor Peter laRuffa
    That's what closed-mindedness looks like, Nye being the exception.

    Where do you place yourself on this spectrum? What could show you that you were wrong if you are? Suppose you have made a mistake - that Jesus didn't live the life you believe He did, that He is not risen, that there is no such thing as sin and no need for salvation? If you're honest with yourself, you'll admit that you're like these guys, and that nothing at all could change your mind. That's closed-mindedness.

    The reason and evidence based thinker has the advantage. He takes his information from observation of nature rather than by mere assertion, like this guy
    • "We're not two sides of the same coin, and you don't get to put your unreason up on the same shelf with my reason. Your stuff has to go over there, on the shelf with Zeus and Thor and the Kraken, with the stuff that is not evidence-based, stuff that religious people never change their mind about, no matter what happens ... I'm open to anything for which there's evidence. Show me a god, and I will believe in him. If Jesus Christ comes down from the sky during the halftime show of this Sunday's Super Bowl and turns all the nachos into loaves and fishes, well, I'll think ... "Oh, look at that. I was wrong. There he is. My bad. Praise the Lord." - Bill Maher
    If he's wrong, there is a means for him to discover that. His mind is open. The contradictory evidence, if it ever manifests, will enter his mind and change it, something that never happens for the rest of these poor souls irreversibly ensconsed in their faith-based confirmation biases, cut off from evidence.

    Resurrection is not known to occur as described in the Bible. There is nothing logical about accepting such an extraordinary claim based on words alone. That's how one slips off the road of reason into the ditch of faith, leaving one world for another.

    I really don't know any other way to tell you that mere words are not compelling evidence that what would be a magical event not known to be possible and never demonstrated ever occurred. Words in a book are not a demonstration that resurrection can occur or ever has.If you can assimilate that, perhaps you will stop offering such words as evidence of an actual resurrection

    If I were willing to believe such testimony, why take it from the Christian holy book. Why not believe the Muslim one instead, or go with the Jews and ignore the New Testament. Or go with the Mormons or Scientologists. None of that appeals to me, but were I to pick one, why yours? Why did you pick it and not of the others?

    No, it's not the only explanation for the words that make these claims. Cat Stevens did a 180 and became a Muslim and surely makes similar claims about a competing religion. So what? I don't believe that he has found anything of value to me, and I'll bet that you would say the same for yourself.

    If so, then you know how I feel about stories of people having religious experiences. It's a pretty common psychological experience that I am directly familiar with. I had one myself in the early seventies. It was a state of ecstatic euphoria that I misinterpreted as the presence of a god, which led me to nearly a decade of Christianity, practiced zealously for several years. I had my own 180. I eventually finished the turn and returned to where I began, a 360.

    That these three people are said to have had similar experiences is not evidence to me of anything other than that these experiences are commonplace and have been occurring for millennia.

    See above. People have compelling psychological experiences that they misunderstand. They like to invent religions and gods. They write mythology. They generate a narrative over time, one that includes older myths such as the resurrected god. From Wiki

    "A dying-and-rising, death-rebirth, or resurrection deity is a religious motif in which a god or goddess dies and is resurrected ... Examples of gods who die and later return to life are most often cited from the religions of the Ancient Near East, and traditions influenced by them include Biblical and Greco-Roman mythology and by extension Christianity ... Frazer cited the examples of Osiris, Tammuz, Adonis and Attis, Dionysus and Jesus Christ"

    Just like the flood myth. The story is the retelling of an ancient and pervasive motif, very possibly related to the motion of the sun in winter solstice.

    "For inhabitants of the Northern Hemisphere, the winter solstice process becomes most noticeable around December 1 when the sun appears to “move” south and get smaller. By the day of the actual winter solstice [around December 21st], the sun has reached its lowest point in the sky at -25.5°. Once it has reached this lowest point, an interesting thing happens: the sun appears to stop moving south for three days. After this, the sun moves 1° north, announcing the coming of spring. It will continue to move northward until the summer solstice when it reaches its highest point" source

    Sol Invictus, the resurrected sun (son?), a Roman god.

    You asked for an alternate explanation. I have no burden of proof here. I don't need to demonstrate that what I proposed happened. It's enough that it could have happened.

    Your hypothesis is a major violation of Occam's Razor. The simplest explanation consistent with the relevant evidence is the preferred one. My hypothesis only requires that people invent myths and spread them, something we know occurs commonly. Yours requires supernaturalism. Yours requires that a god exists. Mine doesn't Yours requires that resurrection can occur. Mine doesn't.

    What I say is that you haven't made the case for a resurrection - that I was not convinced by an argument based entirely in scripture.

    I don't actually deny that a resurrection occurred, just that the evidence suggests that it didn't, and even if it did, I have no reason to believe as much. Neither do you.

    If you ever feel like addressing what is actually written to you rather than whatever is spinning through your mind when you read it, this might be a good pace to start.
     
    #750 It Aint Necessarily So, Jun 12, 2019
    Last edited: Jun 12, 2019
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  11. sojourner

    sojourner Annoyingly Progressive Since 2006

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    I'll PM you.
     
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  12. Spartan

    Spartan Well-Known Member

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    All of that fluff and you STILL could not come up with a logical, alternative narrative for the resurrection that explains (1) the empty tomb; (2) the sudden, changed lives of the disciples; (3) why skeptics Thomas, James, and Paul were now believers in the resurrection; (4) why the resurrection was the central message of the early church, and (5) why the earliest known mention and creed of Christianity affirms the resurrection.

    "The 1st Corinthians Creed

    “For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the Scriptures, and that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve. After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born.” – Paul, 1 Corinthians 15:3-8

    While the word “received” (a rabbinical term) can also be used in the New Testament of receiving a message or body of instruction or doctrine (1 Cor.11:23; 15:1, 3; Gal. 1:9, 12 [2x], Col 2:6; 1 Thess 2:13; 4:1; 2 Thess 3:6), it also means means “to receive from another.” This entails that Paul received this information from someone else at an even earlier date. 1 Corinthians is dated 50-55 A.D. Since Jesus was crucified in 30-33 A.D. the letter is only 20-25 years after the death of Jesus. But the actual creed here in 1 Cor. 15 was received by Paul much earlier than 55 A.D.

    As Scholar Gary Habermas notes:

    “Even critical scholars usually agree that it has an exceptionally early origin.” Ulrich Wilckens declares that this creed “indubitably goes back to the oldest phase of all in the history of primitive Christianity.” (8) Joachim Jeremias calls it “the earliest tradition of all.” (9) Even the non-Christian scholar Gerd Ludemann says that “I do insist that the discovery of pre-Pauline confessional foundations is one of the great achievements in the New Testament scholarship.”

    The majority of scholars who comment think that Paul probably received this information about three years after his conversion, which probably occurred from one to four years after the crucifixion. At that time, Paul visited Jerusalem to speak with Peter and James, each of whom are included in the list of Jesus’ appearances (1 Cor. 15:5, 7; Gal. 1:18–19).This places it at roughly A.D. 32–38.

    Even the (liberal) Jesus Seminar co-founder John Dominic Crossan, writes:

    “Paul wrote to the Corinthians from Ephesus in the early 50s C.E. But he says in 1 Corinthians 15:3 that “I handed on to you as of first importance which I in turn received.” The most likely source and time for his reception of that tradition would have been Jerusalem in the early 30s when, according to Galatians 1:18, he “went up to Jerusalem to visit Cephas [Peter] and stayed with him fifteen days.”

    Earliest Mention of the Resurrection of Jesus Christ

    You have nothing to counter all that with except the usual denials and your caveat that "I have no burden of proof here." If you can't offer a viable alternative narrative that explains what I posted above, then you really have nothing to bark about.
     
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  13. sooda

    sooda Veteran Member

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    Up to Jerusalem is common parlance.

    Going Up to Jerusalem | Christian Coalition
    cc.org/commentary/going_jerusalem
    Just 37 miles west of Jerusalem is the Mediterranean Sea, and 22 miles to its east is the lowest point on earth, the Dead Sea. This explains why in John 5:1 Jesus “went up to Jerusalem,” and in the parable of the Good Samaritan, the poor man that fell among thieves was going “down from Jerusalem” (Luke 10:30).
     
  14. JJ50

    JJ50 Well-Known Member

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    The Bible isn't any sort of evidence for your claims.
     
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  15. Spartan

    Spartan Well-Known Member

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    You aren't the least bit believable.
     
  16. JJ50

    JJ50 Well-Known Member

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    You remind me of some of the more extreme Christians at the awful Pentecostal church I was forced to attend as child.:mad: Their approach to the faith was enough to put anyone off for life. If a god does exist and is of a decent disposition, unlike like the Bible god character, I doubt it would want any of them in its club.
     
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  17. sooda

    sooda Veteran Member

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    The common practice in disposing of the bodies of those who were crucified was to put them in the city dump on the outskirts of Jerusalem.. Gehenna.

    There's no way of knowing.
     
  18. It Aint Necessarily So

    It Aint Necessarily So Well-Known Member
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    Actually, I did give you a logical alternative. But as I said, you don't see evidence. I also told you that no number of words will make me believe that a biologically dead person rose from the dead, but I can see from what's coming, you ignored that as well..

    You didn't address my argument, so not surprisingly, my position hasn't changed. No words are adequate evidence that a resurrection occurred, including those above. You never rebutted the argument that words are not sufficient evidence for this extraordinary claim. You didn't agree or disagree with that point, nor explain why you disagree if you do. Naturally, my opinion there hasn't changed. Why would it?

    How about the rebuttal of your claim that skeptics are closed-minded. Whoosh again!. My position hasn't changed there, either, for the same reason.

    I've explained this before. When you do that, the discussion halts, and doesn't ever resume again if you never address the argument made. There was no mention of my rebuttal of your claim that Occam's Razor supports your position. Your position remains a gross violation of Occam's Razor, which is grounds enough to reject it. That hasn't changed, either. Why would it if you keep ignoring the arguments made to you and bring me more apologetics knowing in advance that I reject apologetics for reasons carefully explained to you.

    But none of this ever gets through to you. It's as if none of that argument was made. Here you are below telling me as much - that none of that got through to you just as I described.

    Once again, you fail to rebut. I told you that I believed I had no burden of proof, and like virtually everything else told to you, you ignored the comment. OK. What makes you think that you don't have a burden of proof, assuming that you want to be believed? If that doesn't matter to you, you are free to make unsupported claims, which will be disregarded.

    Why don't you sit down with somebody that isn't a faith-based thinker, and the two of you review the viable alternative that I gave you. I'll bet that your friend can see evidence.

    Or go back to the post alone, look at the individual claims, disagree with any that you don't accept and give your argument why. If you can't or won't do that, you have zero power of persuasion here. Nothing will move me but a compelling argument, and I've already told you that words alone do not demonstrate that possibility much less the fact of an actual resurrection. Are you able to do that?
     
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  19. Subduction Zone

    Subduction Zone Veteran Member

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    All you have are arguments based upon circular reasoning. By those standards the Lord of Ring is a true history since it is self consistent. There is an obvious answer that you simply won't deal with. There was no empty tomb to start with. Tales of changed lives are largely self aggrandizement. You can't rely on the Bible for tales of "skeptics". They are just part of the story.

    Gollum is our savior, he took the ring from Frodo and did what had to be done.
     
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  20. Spartan

    Spartan Well-Known Member

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    Are you whining again? Do yourself a favor and go do some serious study this time on the Gospels, etc. It looks like all you've done is the skeptic's usual superficial reading. Heck, you didn't even know Jesus is divine in scripture. And you left Christianity? Like I said, you never knew to begin with what it was all about.
     
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