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Featured The word of God?

Discussion in 'General Religious Debates' started by Vinayaka, May 16, 2021.

  1. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    Where did the idea that an individual's scripture is the word of God come from? For one, it might be the word of God to you and the members of your faith, but it isn't for others.

    Why do some folks say things like "These aren't my views, they're God's," thinking falsely that somehow they're off the hook, because someone else said it? What's the psychology of this?

    This leap in faith makes absolutely no sense to me.
     
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  2. adrian009

    adrian009 Veteran Member
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    Its part of the Abrahamic Faiths starting from Judaism and including Christianity, Islam and the Baha'i Faith. I've heard some Hindus, refer to some of the Hindu scriptures (? Vedas) in a similar manner but don't know enough to elaborate.
     
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  3. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    How long has it been going on? Since the day the those scriptures were written? Yes, I've heard that about the Vedas too, although they aren't used much except for selective quotes, usually from the Upanishads.

    I liken it a bit to the police officer who's getting yelled at for pulling over a speeder, and he says, "I don't make the laws, I just enforce them." In his case he's right. It's the government that the person ought to be arguing with.
    But in religions or adherents who do it, it seems to me an abdication of responsibility. Surely, if you quote 'God's word" you also believe in those words.

    Does 'I didn't say it, God said it' make sense to you?
     
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  4. adrian009

    adrian009 Veteran Member
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    Scriptures still requires meditation and reflection to make sense of what’s been said and how to apply it to one’s life. I would see it as the words of a kind and wise friend rather than an authoritarian dictator. Fundamentalists give these religions a bad reputation.
     
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  5. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    So you don't believe in infallibility?
     
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  6. pearl

    pearl Well-Known Member

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    While it may seem like a leap of faith to us in the 21th cent, the 'word of God' concept is from how a people 'experienced' their God. In order to believe that we have the actual spoken word of God one must believe that God actually spoke words. If not then the words are inspired and human. So the 'word' in the Word of God is human. Fundamentalists of any religion do not allow for this, the words they read are dictated and robots wrote. As for infallibility it concerns that Scripture necessary for salvation.
     
  7. 9-10ths_Penguin

    9-10ths_Penguin 1/10 Subway Stalinist
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    I believe the specific phrase comes from the liturgy used in Catholic mass: they use the phrase "the Word of the Lord" to refer to the Gospel reading of the day... but I believe the intended meaning there is "the story of the Lord," not "things that God dictated verbatim."


    I don't think that could be correct. It's a factual claim: God was either the source of the material or he wasn't. I don't see how this could be true for one person and false for another. If there's a disagreement on this, then at least one side is mistaken.

    I'm not sure I'd look for anything particularly deep in the phrase.

    I generally take it to mean just that the person wants to shut down the discussion and thinks that "it's God's view, not mine!" will do the job.
     
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  8. Windwalker

    Windwalker Veteran Member
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    It comes out of the Jewish tradition, particularly the Psalms. Read Psalm 119 in its entirety, as it extols the law or the word of the Lord as guidance and truth for those who follow it. "Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path" Ps. 119:105

    I would liken this to the Dharma. It's the way of the Divine, doing good, helping, healing, teaching, as opposed to self interest and greed and destruction to life and others. It's just the form of language to speak to following the ways of God. That's in all religions, as far as I can tell.

    Spiritual immaturity. Ignorance. Weakness of faith. Insecurity. Fear. Childishness. Arrogance. Nothing praiseworthy.

    It makes no logical sense either, as anything anyone reads from scripture is filtered through their own understandings, such as they might be. Therefore they are not "God's word", they are "My interpretation of God's word".

    If your heart is small, what you see in scripture will reflect that smallness. Therefore, they attempt to bring God down to their level, and call that good and right and true, rather than be challenged by it. "It's not my words, but God's!" Nonsense.
     
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  9. Yazata

    Yazata Active Member

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    From the idea of divine revelations probably. Historically, most religions haven't been textual in a scriptual sense, but I'd say that pretty much all religions that have some concept of divinity have some concept of revelations from/about those divinities. I'd guess that the idea of scripture is just that much older idea in written form.

    That would seem to be true of all human culture. This might be the way things are done in one community, but not in another. These actions might be good or evil in one community, but not in another. Atheists love to announce that they "trust the science", but not everyone agrees.

    Perhaps part of the problem there is the urge to universalize these things. The 'whatever I believe, you should believe too' instinct. That leads to conflict, but it's also the foundation upon which communities are built. It's hard to see how a group of individualistic social-atoms could ever coalesce into a community unless all of them share some basic principles in common. Something that pulls them together in common purpose rather than driving them apart in antagonistic difference.

    Well, God is supposed to be authoritative, right? God is supposed to be God of all creation, right?
     
  10. pearl

    pearl Well-Known Member

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    Already present in the oldest of the writing Prophets. Amos 1:1 begins with "The words of Amos, ending in 9:15 with 'Thus say the Lord your God".
     
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  11. loverofhumanity

    loverofhumanity Well-Known Member
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    It may be difficult for you because you don’t accept Avatars or Prophets or that God sends such Representatives to this world to give IPA’s guidance which of course we are free to accept or reject.

    But for myself, I believe in something called the ‘Creative Word of God’ that is endowed with a special power if written or spoken by One of These Prophets or Manifestations.

    These Words actually release a power into the world once they are revealed. These Words I believe bring about arts, sciences and inventions from the hidden realm to the world of reality and accompany a new Manifestation.

    So for example the Words of Baha’u’llah “The earth is but one country and mankind it’s citizens’ I believe, gave birth to the sciences and technologies which have brought about the world neighbourhood we see today. Through world travel and communications such as mobile and the internet, the world has indeed become as one country enabling all on earth to communicate just as citizens of any country would.

    Since the 19th century when Two Manifestations of God appeared, there has been an explosion of knowledge scientific and technological that is greater than all past ages combined. Coincidence? Luck? My belief is that the Revelation of Baha’u’llah has released and generated these forces.

    Best put in His Words.

    All the wondrous achievements ye now witness are the direct consequences of the Revelation of this Name. In the days to come, ye will, verily, behold things of which ye have never heard before.”

    This is my view and I know you do not accept this but this is how I understand the Word of God. This is one meaning but there are others.
     
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  12. paarsurrey

    paarsurrey Veteran Member

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    Then one should quote God's direct converse exactly, not one's own interpretation or thinking.

    Regards
     
  13. Jainarayan

    Jainarayan ॐ नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय
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    The difference, I see, is the presentation. The “word of God “ is usually based on commandments. “Thou shalt... “, “Thou shalt not...”, abomination this, abomination that. Adherents of the religions that use this will often say mankind needs to be told what to do, how to live. It’s a very judgement-based system. Eastern philosophy and thought is completely different. We don’t have commandments, we have teachings, explanations and examples.

    Because I’m Vaishnava the Bhagavad Gita and Bhagavata Purana are my primary scriptures, yours of course are different but there is nothing in any of them that God or the acharyas have said that is a commandment. Teaching stories, guidance, advice yes, commandments no. We have our belief in karma that makes judgements from God redundant.

    I understand why people say it. It’s what they really believe. The idea of a law-giving and commandment-giving God who judges does not make sense or sit well with me, hence my reason for abandoning it.
     
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  14. Vinayaka

    Vinayaka devotee
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    About as rational as saying, "God made me do it." There is a vast distance in taking responsibility in the two paradigms. We in the east know bloody well (pardon the expression) that we and we alone are responsible for out actions. In the west you can commit murder, and claim God told you to do it, or that it's all good because somebody else already suffered for your sins. We know all too well it's ourselves (the soul in another incarnation) that will do the suffering.

    The homophobes use 'It's God's word' for their hate. Oh well, I guess there's some consolation in the fact that not all of us see it that way.
     
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  15. Jainarayan

    Jainarayan ॐ नमो भगवते वासुदेवाय
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    To clarify for the population at large, that statement in no way suggests the scriptures of the various sects are at odds or contradictory. Hindu scriptures and writings, though oftentimes seemingly contradictory are just portions of a whole we don’t always see. One scripture may focus on something another doesn’t.
     
  16. Marcion

    Marcion neo-humanistic tantric-yogi

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    I think it is quite simple. Christians believe that the Holy Spirit through their (mythical) apostles guaranteed the "true transmission of the holy gospel" and that these transmissions were perfected by the struggles with so-called "heretical teachings".
    So they don't see the development of their scriptures as discoveries of truths or rational thoughts and choices made by religious leaders, but rather as miraculous "perfect revelations" by the guidance of God.

    All the teachings outside this bubble are seen as man made and perverted, starting with Greek philosophies and the pseudo-christian heresies.
    So there is no way that you will be able to convince a Christian that your viewpoint has any value to them.
    You are a priory outside of their paradigma and not bringing the "Word of God".
    That's how I see it at the moment anyway.
     
    #16 Marcion, May 16, 2021
    Last edited: May 16, 2021
  17. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
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    From the literalist Christian perspective? John has a lot to say on the matter.

    John 1:1-3
    "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things were made through Him, and without Him nothing was made that was made."

    John 1:14
    "And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.'

    John 14:10
    "Do you not believe that I am in the Father, and the Father in Me? The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works."

    This is where Christian literalism finds it's authority of the bible as the word of god.
     
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  18. stvdv

    stvdv Veteran Member

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    Kind of strange thing to say this, I think

    Indirect the one saying this, says that he does not believe in God (and/or His views)
    So, that seems to indicate the person is an Atheist

    But, an Atheist lacks belief in God, so an Atheist would never say this

    I wonder, who would make such a claim?
     
    #18 stvdv, May 16, 2021
    Last edited: May 16, 2021
  19. pearl

    pearl Well-Known Member

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    Did God speak words to Moses?
     
  20. SigurdReginson

    SigurdReginson Grēne Mann
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    No, they aren't atheists - authority is their god. They believe in the authority of god above all else; even their own beliefs and understandings. I've often heard folks say things such as "I have no problem with gay folks, but that lifestyle is a sin." Meaning, "There's no real observable harm in homosexuality by itself, but the word of god says it's a bad thing, so I default to that."

    Edit: The interesting thing is that this authority they put so much emphasis on is in the authority of that particular interpretation. Makes it easy to just shut the brain off and not think about things too deeply and just accept things as "well, I guess that's just the way things are."
     
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