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Thread: A simple test we can all try.

  1. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by flippy View Post
    Logically, the odds are stacked against the Jesus story being real. But even if it's just a fairy tale, it still has some value.

    The Jesus story could be the one fairy tale it's generally acceptable to believe in when we are adults. And by believing in that story it allows people to hold onto their childhood innocence and be generally accepted in doing so in society. And without it, people couldn't maintain hope/innocence.

    I've often wondered if the need to believe is driven by ego and fear of the unknown. And I realized the need to disprove is driven by the same ego and fear.

    Gotta say it's such an interesting topic. People are willing to die for something that has close to 0 odds of being true.

    On the flip side, why bother peeing in another man's wheaties? We all are the same and seeking the same stuff even when we are looking for polar opposites. We are what we hate, right? Sometimes I also wonder if the Christians are the most anti-Christian and the non Christians are those of true faith?

    At the end of the day, almost everything in the world is upside down. Jesus taught that too btw.
    Actually, Flippy, I find the teachings of Christ to be amazing and spot on. It's just that so many who need to pronounce that they are into Jesus, they are often the ones who break far away from those teachings. Not everyone, of course, but a lot. So, when they mentally point the dirty end of the stick at others, for not going to church, they are doing things like supporting wars, where millions of innocents die, for the profit of the most vile and evil, at the expense of the poor (on both sides, who is fighting these wars for the US, rich people?). Or, how about the politicians who wear Jesus on their chest and then get busted for all the same stuff they condemn (gay acts, drugs, stealing), and then they just bluster and cry and say they are sorry and back on team Jesus? It's disgusting.

  2. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
    I see Jesus everyday...anytime I look for Him...I find Him.
    And Muslims, etc. would tell us the very same thing about their Lord. Heck, even Scientologists and Mormons, etc. would even swear they see their God all the time, as well. Buddhists? Hindus? Shintos? Wouldn't they all claim the same? Is everyone right or is everyone wrong?

  3. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by lloydroid View Post
    Actually, Flippy, I find the teachings of Christ to be amazing and spot on. It's just that so many who need to pronounce that they are into Jesus, they are often the ones who break far away from those teachings. Not everyone, of course, but a lot. So, when they mentally point the dirty end of the stick at others, for not going to church, they are doing things like supporting wars, where millions of innocents die, for the profit of the most vile and evil, at the expense of the poor (on both sides, who is fighting these wars for the US, rich people?). Or, how about the politicians who wear Jesus on their chest and then get busted for all the same stuff they condemn (gay acts, drugs, stealing), and then they just bluster and cry and say they are sorry and back on team Jesus? It's disgusting.
    I would agree with all of that except the ending. I think people using Jesus for personal gain, manipulation, power etc is what disturbs me the most. I have a lot more understanding for those who have done things they shouldn't. The fact that you are so against people who have ever made a mistake either means you are a saint or a hypocrite.

  4. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by lloydroid View Post
    And Muslims, etc. would tell us the very same thing about their Lord. Heck, even Scientologists and Mormons, etc. would even swear they see their God all the time, as well. Buddhists? Hindus? Shintos? Wouldn't they all claim the same? Is everyone right or is everyone wrong?
    So it's not possible that God has revealed himself differently to different cultures? Differently to me...than to Flippy? I think it's less about right and wrong and more about revelation through relationship. I believe people of many religions in many cultures experience God...not just Christians.

  5. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by lloydroid View Post
    OK, so, using that model of thought, God also created cancer, AIDs, etc. Why would an all-loving God create those things?
    Are you of the mind set that someone who smokes a pack a day for 50 years should blame God for lung cancer? Humans can take none of the credit for their choices? All the suffering in the world is by the hand of God?

  6. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by lloydroid View Post
    OK, so, using that model of thought, God also created cancer, AIDs, etc. Why would an all-loving God create those things?
    The Biblical scholars would say that those things are the consequence of sin. And sin is really just the separation of man from God. So when we are apart from God, that's when bad things can happen to us as a result. So we must repent (turn away) from sin and return back to a harmonious relationship with God.

    There's still a lot of valid questions that typically come from this because seemingly innocent people suffer all the time. But that often gets explained away by us being born with sin passed to us from Adam and Eve. And if they had never made a bad choice and separated from God, there would have never been a need for consequences or bad things to happen in the world.

    I don't really understand why God would hold all of humanity responsible for the sins of Adam and Eve. He holds many grudges against people. He's wiped out a lot of non Jews (non believers) in the old testament.

    Later on he sacrifices his son for our sin, so I guess he makes up for ages of holding grudges. When you really peel back the layers, this Bible book is dangerous if misused. And it's next to impossible to know if anyone is using it right.

  7. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
    So it's not possible that God has revealed himself differently to different cultures? Differently to me...than to Flippy? I think it's less about right and wrong and more about revelation through relationship. I believe people of many religions in many cultures experience God...not just Christians.
    I'm with you there. I don't like getting too caught up in the various doctrines. I'm not sure God would want religions to divide people. The doctrines are core to every religion and they're interesting to study. But at the end of the day who cares about the rituals, if there's 1 or many Gods, the semantics of the word God, Jesus/Horus/Buddah/Joseph Smith, etc.

    If people experience and share transformational peace and joy in this world, "God" is satisfied. Christians say you need to have faith in Jesus. Could "faith in Jesus" mean something else? Could it just be saying we have to understand life is fleeting and the stuff in this world will not bring true happiness and the only way to find true happiness is to believe in something greater than oneself? And that transformation can lead to "heaven" where "heaven" isn't an afterlife but a here and now that's achievable through faith in "Jesus" which could be symbolic of something greater than us.

    I think everyone should just read the Bible. They call it the "living word" and every time I read it, the meaning changes for me. Whatever experiences I've had since the last time I've read the book, change my interpretation.

    I've studied other religions and I can find harmony between other religions and Christianity. It's there and easy to find when you're looking for it. You can find anything in the Bible really.

  8. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by flippy View Post
    I'm with you there. I don't like getting too caught up in the various doctrines. I'm not sure God would want religions to divide people. The doctrines are core to every religion and they're interesting to study. But at the end of the day who cares about the rituals, if there's 1 or many Gods, the semantics of the word God, Jesus/Horus/Buddah/Joseph Smith, etc.

    If people experience and share transformational peace and joy in this world, "God" is satisfied. Christians say you need to have faith in Jesus. Could "faith in Jesus" mean something else? Could it just be saying we have to understand life is fleeting and the stuff in this world will not bring true happiness and the only way to find true happiness is to believe in something greater than oneself? And that transformation can lead to "heaven" where "heaven" isn't an afterlife but a here and now that's achievable through faith in "Jesus" which could be symbolic of something greater than us.

    I think everyone should just read the Bible. They call it the "living word" and every time I read it, the meaning changes for me. Whatever experiences I've had since the last time I've read the book, change my interpretation.

    I've studied other religions and I can find harmony between other religions and Christianity. It's there and easy to find when you're looking for it. You can find anything in the Bible really.
    i believe faith in Jesus can look many ways. But, the one way I'm convinced its not supposed to look like is saying...I believe...I believe...then going about doing on own thing hoping for some sort of fire insurance. Most religions have some harmonious beliefs which are core to all faiths. I don't believe Jesus to be a symbol, I believe Him to be God in human form. But, I think each person needs to figure that out for themselves. I do believe Christ revealed himself to creation in multiple ways...in multiple cultures of people in many different faiths.

    as for suffering and sin...I see this a bit differently than most. But we all see through the glass darkly. I think suffering, consequences, learning to navigate through an evil world have value spiritually. My most valuable spiritual lessons came through suffering...consequences...learning about evil by my own hand. It has made me the man I am today.

  9. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
    I would agree with all of that except the ending. I think people using Jesus for personal gain, manipulation, power etc is what disturbs me the most. I have a lot more understanding for those who have done things they shouldn't. The fact that you are so against people who have ever made a mistake either means you are a saint or a hypocrite.
    You just formed a straw man argument. Where did I say I was "so against" anyone who had ever made a mistake? No where. But I am annoyed by those who cheer lead for Jesus as a ploy, when they are fully engaged in stuff that they speak out against every day. Ever hear of Paul Crouch, Pat Robertson, Rick Warren, Chuck Smith, Benny Hinn, Robert Schuller, Oral Roberts, James Swaggart, Joel Osteen or John Hagee? Real pieces of work. Would you have your daughters listen to their preaching?

  10. #20
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    Quote Originally Posted by flippy View Post
    The Biblical scholars would say that those things are the consequence of sin. And sin is really just the separation of man from God. So when we are apart from God, that's when bad things can happen to us as a result. So we must repent (turn away) from sin and return back to a harmonious relationship with God.

    There's still a lot of valid questions that typically come from this because seemingly innocent people suffer all the time. But that often gets explained away by us being born with sin passed to us from Adam and Eve. And if they had never made a bad choice and separated from God, there would have never been a need for consequences or bad things to happen in the world.

    I don't really understand why God would hold all of humanity responsible for the sins of Adam and Eve. He holds many grudges against people. He's wiped out a lot of non Jews (non believers) in the old testament.

    Later on he sacrifices his son for our sin, so I guess he makes up for ages of holding grudges. When you really peel back the layers, this Bible book is dangerous if misused. And it's next to impossible to know if anyone is using it right.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPOfurmrjxo

    "But he loves us!"

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