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GOD EXISTS

For anyone who might want to have a side conversation...you're welcome here!
Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by The E   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 2:59 am

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cthia wrote:Cthia is indeed working on a formal proof.

That, in no way, discredits what smr said. Even if I am successful at a formal proof that God absolutely exists, he still will not exist for some people. Even if GOD himself comes to Earth and introduces himself. Even if HIS SON visits us, we, some of us, will never believe. There are still certain things that one must do. Because in THE END it won't matter if we know GOD, it will only matter if GOD knows us. Lest he will tell us to depart from him for HE never knew us.

Even if GOD exists, because of freedom to choose, GOD may not exist for you.


I'm curious, what definition are you using for "formal proof"? Isn't one of the hallmarks of a formal proof that it doesn't require the person evaluating it to be a believer?

To me, it sounds like what you are working on is less a proof and more an affirmation of your beliefs. Nothing wrong with that, of course, but claiming it to be a proof of anything besides your personal beliefs, or to claim it to be valid beyond your own mind (which is implied by your usage of the term formal proof) is a questionable piece of rhetoric.
Last edited by The E on Wed Dec 03, 2014 5:07 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by fallsfromtrees   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 4:58 am

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Time to throw my little Molotov Cocktail into this discussion.

My major problem with mainstream Christian theology is the "get out of jail free card" that is a central tenet. This is the principle that if a "sinner" truly repents his sins, he is forgiven. All well and good, but examine the implications. Let us suppose that Adolf Hitler, on his deathbed, sincerely repents arranging for the murder of 6 million Jews, and I don't remember how many other people, and then dies. According to standard Christian theology, he goes straight to heaven. This of course comes out of the Jewish custom of a scape goat (that is an animal unto which an individual's or a community's sins were loaded and then sent into the wilderness to carry them away). This evolved into a required sacrifice at the Temple to expiate one's sins. Christians believe that the death of Christ was the final sacrifice and therefore no further sacrifices are required for the true believer.

And in fact, the use of this type of get out jail free card has a long history. The Emperor Constantine (who was responsible for Christianity becoming the state religion of the Roman Empire) refused to be baptized until he was on his death bed, as he wanted to be able to act without constraints during his reign and still get to heaven.

The Catholic church addressed this seeming inequity by introducing the concept of Purgatory, for which there is not a single shred of biblical evidence or justification, and which the Protestants have totally rejected.

As it is now, all too many Christian sects are now basically engaged in selling "fire insurance" - believe our way, or you will burn in Hell forever.
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The only problem with quotes on the internet is that you can't authenticate them -- Abraham Lincoln
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Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by Annachie   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 5:39 am

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Falls, after that post you may need to go buy an indulgence.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
You are so going to die. :p ~~~~ runsforcelery
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still not dead. :)
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Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by fallsfromtrees   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 6:05 am

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Annachie wrote:Falls, after that post you may need to go buy an indulgence.

indulgences were just another form of fire insurance, designed to raise money to build one of the cathedrals in Rome (St Peters, IIRC).
========================

The only problem with quotes on the internet is that you can't authenticate them -- Abraham Lincoln
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Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by cthia   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 8:43 am

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TN4994 wrote:
smr wrote:
Email contributed by Wilma C., June 23, 2004:

The professor of a university challenged his students with this question. "Did God create everything that exists?" A student answered bravely, "Yes, he did".

The professor then asked, "If God created everything, then he created evil. Since evil exists (as noticed by our own actions), so God is evil. The student couldn't respond to that statement causing the professor to conclude that he had "proved" that "belief in God" was a fairy tale, and therefore worthless.

Another student raised his hand and asked the professor, "May I pose a question? " "Of course" answered the professor.

The young student stood up and asked : "Professor does Cold exists?"

The professor answered, "What kind of question is that? ...Of course the cold exists... haven't you ever been cold?"

The young student answered, "In fact sir, Cold does not exist. According to the laws of Physics, what we consider cold, in fact is the absence of heat. Anything is able to be studied as long as it transmits energy (heat). Absolute Zero is the total absence of heat, but cold does not exist. What we have done is create a term to describe how we feel if we don't have body heat or we are not hot."

"And, does Dark exist?", he continued. The professor answered "Of course". This time the student responded, "Again you're wrong, Sir. Darkness does not exist either. Darkness is in fact simply the absence of light. Light can be studied, darkness can not. Darkness cannot be broken down. A simple ray of light tears the darkness and illuminates the surface where the light beam finishes. Dark is a term that we humans have created to describe what happens when there's lack of light."

Finally, the student asked the professor, "Sir, does evil exist?" The professor replied, "Of course it exists, as I mentioned at the beginning, we see violations, crimes and violence anywhere in the world, and those things are evil."

The student responded, "Sir, Evil does not exist. Just as in the previous cases, Evil is a term which man has created to describe the result of the absence of God's presence in the hearts of man."

After this, the professor bowed down his head, and didn't answer back.

The young man's name was ALBERT EINSTEIN.


Origins: For those looking for a quick answer to the question of whether this item is literally true, we'll state up front that it is not. Nothing remotely like the account related above appears in any biography or article about Albert Einstein, nor is the account congruent with that scientist's expressed views on the subject of religion (in which he generally described himself as an "agnostic" or a "religious nonbeliever"). Einstein's name has simply been inserted into an anecdote created long after his death in order to provide the reading audience with a recognizable figure and thus lend the tale an air of verisimilitude.


TN4994 is right. There is no way Albert Einstein would ever have said something so absolutely stupid. Riots, looting, arson, robbery, rape and murder are all deeds of active evil that can never be derived from any sort of passive "absence of good". It would be less inaccurate to describe "good" as an "absence of evil".

cthia wrote:I will ask, Are you open to the idea that God exists?

Of course, but I require real, verifiable evidence before I will go so far as to actively believe it. On the other hand, if presented with real evidence that your god does not exist, I will be much less open to the idea. I am open to the idea that artificial gravity and hyperspace are possible, but I won't believe those without evidence either.

cthia wrote:You either worship GOD or you worship Satan.

Imaginos1892 wrote:
BULLSHIT!

Otherwise known, formally, as the "false dichotomy". Very disappointing; I thought you were better than that. I don't give a rat's ass about either one of them because I do not believe either one exists. Why would I "worship" something that does not exist?

What I believe, and don't believe, does not fit into your narrow preconceptions.
-----------------
Complex questions never have simple answers.
Hell, most simple questions don't have simple answers.

Imaginos, I support your right to choose. Please support mine. I will not belittle your choice by getting indignant in my posts with all who disagree. My, and my beliefs, and also my upbringing - instilled with the notion of common decency, demands it. Does your belief require disrespect?

I stand on one side of the fence.
You stand on the other.

You have made it clear that you are standing where you choose.
I have made it clear that I am standing where I choose.

I may be sad that you are standing on the other side of the fence, but I am not angry, with you.

You may, or may not, be sad because of my location to you.
But your post makes it obvious that you are angry.

I am comfortable with my choice. I am at peace.

You don't seem to be comfortable with your choice, or are at peace. Your anger and vehemence are clear.

Why is that?

Rhetorical question on my part. One you should answer for yourself.

I hope it isn't a case of misery loving company.


****** *

Please, everyone, I humbly ask, let's be civil and respectful to one another. Even if one does not believe in God, does that belie the belief in common decency as well?

Son, your mother says I have to hang you. Personally I don't think this is a capital offense. But if I don't hang you, she's gonna hang me and frankly, I'm not the one in trouble. —cthia's father. Incident in ? Axiom of Common Sense
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Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by The E   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 9:33 am

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cthia wrote:
cthia wrote:You either worship GOD or you worship Satan.

Imaginos1892 wrote:
BULLSHIT!

Otherwise known, formally, as the "false dichotomy". Very disappointing; I thought you were better than that. I don't give a rat's ass about either one of them because I do not believe either one exists. Why would I "worship" something that does not exist?

Imaginos, I support your right to choose. Please support mine. I will not belittle your choice by getting indignant in my posts with all who disagree. My, and my beliefs, and also my upbringing - instilled with the notion of common decency, demands it. Does your belief require disrespect?


Does yours? No, seriously, does nonacceptance of your belief system automatically make someone a persona non grata? I mean, your loud proclamation that anyone not following god must follow Satan kinda implies that your opinion of those of us not taken in by christian teachings is rather low.

I stand on one side of the fence.
You stand on the other.


Difference being that you're insisting on shouting "I WILL PROVE I AM RIGHT" across the divide, without any inclination to actually answer questions about your methodology, how whatever gedankenexperiment you want to perform relates to physical reality, or even without a good plan of action in case your attempted proof fails.

I may be sad that you are standing on the other side of the fence, but I am not angry, with you.

You may, or may not, be sad because of my location to you.
But your post makes it obvious that you are angry.


Gee, I wonder if being called a worshipper of evil might have something to do with that. Probably not, though.

I am comfortable with my choice. I am at peace.


Are you? Why, then, do you feel compelled to construct an absolute proof of your beliefs?

Please, everyone, I humbly ask, let's be civil and respectful to one another. Even if one does not believe in God, does that belie the belief in common decency as well?


You either worship GOD or you worship Satan.


According to you, yes, it does.
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Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by PeterZ   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 11:15 am

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fallsfromtrees wrote:Time to throw my little Molotov Cocktail into this discussion.

My major problem with mainstream Christian theology is the "get out of jail free card" that is a central tenet. This is the principle that if a "sinner" truly repents his sins, he is forgiven. All well and good, but examine the implications. Let us suppose that Adolf Hitler, on his deathbed, sincerely repents arranging for the murder of 6 million Jews, and I don't remember how many other people, and then dies. According to standard Christian theology, he goes straight to heaven. This of course comes out of the Jewish custom of a scape goat (that is an animal unto which an individual's or a community's sins were loaded and then sent into the wilderness to carry them away). This evolved into a required sacrifice at the Temple to expiate one's sins. Christians believe that the death of Christ was the final sacrifice and therefore no further sacrifices are required for the true believer.

And in fact, the use of this type of get out jail free card has a long history. The Emperor Constantine (who was responsible for Christianity becoming the state religion of the Roman Empire) refused to be baptized until he was on his death bed, as he wanted to be able to act without constraints during his reign and still get to heaven.

The Catholic church addressed this seeming inequity by introducing the concept of Purgatory, for which there is not a single shred of biblical evidence or justification, and which the Protestants have totally rejected.

As it is now, all too many Christian sects are now basically engaged in selling "fire insurance" - believe our way, or you will burn in Hell forever.


Shall we discuss the nature of sin, then? What is it? From this post I gather you believe that sin is some sort of measurable harm that must be countered through forgiveness. I would argue that evil and sin aren't measurable at all, but are simply the absence of good.

From that perspective to sin is to move away from God and engaging in behavior that leads away from God. Forgiveness is what we humans need to be able to re-engage God after we commit sin. That is we recognize how badly we have failed God and need something so that we can again face God and try to achieve what we wants from us.

Adolf Hitler committed atrocities. Nothing will change all the harm he caused. His recognition of the harm he caused and his desire to join with God is all he needs to actually join with God in Heaven. The harm he caused isn't wiped away. What is wiped away is any impediment that prohibits Adolf Hitler from joining God if that is what Adolf chose to do.

God wants a relationship with every human being, even those that have failed miserably and honestly want a second or third or however-many-additional chances. He will forgive us as many times as we ask him to because He will give us as many times as we need to accept that relationship with Him.
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Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by fallsfromtrees   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 12:00 pm

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PeterZ wrote:
fallsfromtrees wrote:snip for brevity Let us suppose that Adolf Hitler, on his deathbed, sincerely repents arranging for the murder of 6 million Jews, and I don't remember how many other people, and then dies. According to standard Christian theology, he goes straight to heaven.


Shall we discuss the nature of sin, then? What is it? From this post I gather you believe that sin is some sort of measurable harm that must be countered through forgiveness. I would argue that evil and sin aren't measurable at all, but are simply the absence of good.

From that perspective to sin is to move away from God and engaging in behavior that leads away from God. Forgiveness is what we humans need to be able to re-engage God after we commit sin. That is we recognize how badly we have failed God and need something so that we can again face God and try to achieve what we wants from us.

Adolf Hitler committed atrocities. Nothing will change all the harm he caused. His recognition of the harm he caused and his desire to join with God is all he needs to actually join with God in Heaven. The harm he caused isn't wiped away. What is wiped away is any impediment that prohibits Adolf Hitler from joining God if that is what Adolf chose to do.

God wants a relationship with every human being, even those that have failed miserably and honestly want a second or third or however-many-additional chances. He will forgive us as many times as we ask him to because He will give us as many times as we need to accept that relationship with Him.

Yes, the word atrocities is appropriate. Romans 3:20b says "for by the law [is] the knowledge of sin", which seems to be saying that sin is whatever the powers that be say it is., I think I prefer Robert Heinlein's definition that sin is hurting other people - hurting yourself is not sin - merely stupid.
You have actually done nothing to dispel my use of the phase "Get out of jail free card". This in fact could be considered a case of "But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness." (Romans 4:5). This is usually referred to as "By faith alone are we justified", and leads to exactly the attempt to game the system that Constantine used - and I might add is contrary to the position in James that "faith without works is dead".
========================

The only problem with quotes on the internet is that you can't authenticate them -- Abraham Lincoln
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Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by biochem   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 12:20 pm

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fallsfromtrees wrote:
PeterZ wrote:Yes, the word atrocities is appropriate. Romans 3:20b says "for by the law [is] the knowledge of sin", which seems to be saying that sin is whatever the powers that be say it is., I think I prefer Robert Heinlein's definition that sin is hurting other people - hurting yourself is not sin - merely stupid.
You have actually done nothing to dispel my use of the phase "Get out of jail free card". This in fact could be considered a case of "But to him that worketh not, but believeth on him that justifieth the ungodly, his faith is counted for righteousness." (Romans 4:5). This is usually referred to as "By faith alone are we justified", and leads to exactly the attempt to game the system that Constantine used - and I might add is contrary to the position in James that "faith without works is dead".



The key to the get out of jail card conundrum is that the desire for forgiveness must be sincere. Anyone who asks for forgiveness, thinking it is a get out of jail free card is not truly sincere. One of the many questions a person can ask one's self when about to request forgiveness from God, is "given the chance to do it over, would I commit that sin again?" Not because it turned out badly, not because one was caught but because of the sincere belief that one's actions were wrong.

Only God knows the true heart of an individual. Others can guess but God truly knows. God will know if the request is truly sincere or simply an attempt to game the system. You can't lie to God (even if you can lie to yourself).
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Re: GOD EXISTS
Post by TN4994   » Wed Dec 03, 2014 1:48 pm

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Had a guy from my friend's Christian Congregation ask me about tithing. I referred him to a Rabbi I know.
He didn't like the answer.
Has to do with food.
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