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HorrendousGames

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1st February, 2011 at 01:44:49 -

"Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able?
Then he is not omnipotent.

Is he able, but not willing?
Then he is malevolent.

Is he both able and willing?
Then whence cometh evil?

Is he neither able nor willing?
Then why call him God?"

From the greek philosopher Epicurus. The fact that there is an unlimitedly powerful God that supposedly loves us wants us to suffer is just plain insulting.

 
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UrbanMonk

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1st February, 2011 at 03:50:31 -

Umm, you did it backwards.

You were supposed to post that first, then I was supposed to respond with my previous post.

You know, it's interesting how God allowed all the evil nations that existed back during the time of Genesis when he could have destroyed them outright. He knew they wouldn't repent, but yet he allowed them to live.

God will allow evil to go on as long as it doesn't affect his people, as soon as it does he destroys them.

See Sodom and Gomorrah, a good example of this.

The Sodomites could do what they wanted, but as soon as Lot was in the city that's when God decided to destroy it. Go read it for yourself in Genesis 19.


God isn't a machine, there aren't certain buttons that cause him to react a certain way. He treats every situation differently based on the circumstances.
Which is why Epicurus questions are irrelevant.

These types of things didn't just happen in the Bible mind. Try Googling "miracles of the six day war."
Remember that God always rests on the 7th day.

 
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1st February, 2011 at 03:55:13 -

I guess I'm back to offer my view on things...

I believe God loves us all. But then you have to ask yourself... why aren't we all in heaven if he does love us? This dilemma usually leads people into believing God doesn't exist. The way I see it is this: God DOES love us... but do we love him? I don't believe God would take us all into heaven if we don't love him. I think of it like this: why be friends with someone who hates you or doesn't care about you? If he/she ignores you entirely or kicks you in the teeth, then why would you bestow any kind of special gift upon him/her? Apply this to God. Why would He bestow upon us the privilages of heaven if we hate or ignore him?

The reason we aren't in heaven with God, I believe, is that God is testing us. He's testing us to see if we love him in return. And God doesn't make us suffer in our daily lives: he simply allows bad things to happen, the same way he allows good things to happen. Like UrbanMonk said, "It rains on the just and the unjust". It also shines on the just and the unjust.


That's life.


Being tested by God is definitely hard. Sometimes, though not very often, I find myself getting mad at God for something, then I snap back and realize, "God allowed it to happen, don't hate him for it". I could take the easy road by apostatizing then consider myself an ex-catholic or an atheist and go about doing whatever the heck I want, with only the law holding me back... but I don't and won't consider it. Without God I feel like my life is empty. I've often thought up scenarios what life without God would be like: It would be about being born, growing up, going to school, getting a job, going to work, retiring, then dying... if you're lucky you might do something great in your life. That's it. But if that's all I have to live for then I wonder what's the point of living? What am I supposed to do with my life? Help companies grow? Just live my life with no questions asked? Get rich or famous but never be truly satisfied?

Without God my world would be a shell. Cramped and hollow. Plus, I can't fathom the concept of completely ending. My body gets buried (hopefully not incinerated) and my soul ceases to exist. I can't grasp that concept without making myself dizzy... In fact I just can't grasp the concept, period.

My other 2 cents. I think I'm done here, I'm not sure. This thread is pretty interesting, though.

EDIT: I lied. I came back to fix one heck of a typo.

Edited by W3R3W00F

 
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1st February, 2011 at 07:05:39 -


Originally Posted by UrbanMonk
Umm, you did it backwards.

You were supposed to post that first, then I was supposed to respond with my previous post.

You know, it's interesting how God allowed all the evil nations that existed back during the time of Genesis when he could have destroyed them outright. He knew they wouldn't repent, but yet he allowed them to live.

God will allow evil to go on as long as it doesn't affect his people, as soon as it does he destroys them.

See Sodom and Gomorrah, a good example of this.

The Sodomites could do what they wanted, but as soon as Lot was in the city that's when God decided to destroy it. Go read it for yourself in Genesis 19.


God isn't a machine, there aren't certain buttons that cause him to react a certain way. He treats every situation differently based on the circumstances.
Which is why Epicurus questions are irrelevant.

These types of things didn't just happen in the Bible mind. Try Googling "miracles of the six day war."
Remember that God always rests on the 7th day.



This is why we need to teach religious history in school.
Not creationism, but as a complete and separate class... Religious History. It should be a part of standard curriculum in high school, but it's not. If it were, it would give people a lot more to think about when they consider a form of faith or religion to take up.

 
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Johnny Look

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1st February, 2011 at 12:17:46 -


Originally Posted by Matt Boothman
Bit ridiculous to state that in a Barbarian society 'it would be ok to kill you neighbour' - in no human society ever has it been acceptable to kill without a valid reason. But that's beside the point.

My point is that an animal can't choose to sin - it can't choose to go against the 'rules of the pack'. This is because it has no idea of right and wrong. We do.



Well yes the example itself didn't make sense as I put it, my point being that in some societies it's more accepted to kill for something relatively trivial while in a modern society it's not.

My point is that an animal can't choose to sin - it can't choose to go against the 'rules of the pack'. This is because it has no idea of right and wrong. We do.

A wolf won't go against the rules of the pack the same way a pre historic man wouldn't go against the rules of the group. When survival is at stake everything else is secondary. That was my point in my last post.



Originally Posted by UrbanMonk
Umm, you did it backwards.

You were supposed to post that first, then I was supposed to respond with my previous post.

You know, it's interesting how God allowed all the evil nations that existed back during the time of Genesis when he could have destroyed them outright. He knew they wouldn't repent, but yet he allowed them to live.

God will allow evil to go on as long as it doesn't affect his people, as soon as it does he destroys them.

See Sodom and Gomorrah, a good example of this.

The Sodomites could do what they wanted, but as soon as Lot was in the city that's when God decided to destroy it. Go read it for yourself in Genesis 19.


God isn't a machine, there aren't certain buttons that cause him to react a certain way. He treats every situation differently based on the circumstances.
Which is why Epicurus questions are irrelevant.

These types of things didn't just happen in the Bible mind. Try Googling "miracles of the six day war."
Remember that God always rests on the 7th day.



"Evil nations" ? Aren't we all supposedly god's sons ? Or only those who believe ?
If I ask god for help against an enemy, will be god be against him ? Even if he is a devout christian himself ?

By the way what supposedly happened in the 6 day war has been known to be a huge exaggeration by israel in order to motivate the troops (which worked superbly) and was denied by the nations that were supposedly afflicted by those "miracles".
Of course it's all very convenient that this happened in israel, the birthplace of the christian religion, which raises another questions: Will be god against me if israel decides to go at war and invade my country ?

All these questions considered, tell me how can't epicurus's questions be relevant, assuming I'm on the side that's supposedly being destroyed by god.

Like horrendous said, it's ridiculous to think that god would destroy me as easily as he would help. Also the idea that non-believers and sinners end up burning in hell forever only makes it all even better.

Edited by Johnny Look

 
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1st February, 2011 at 15:51:07 -


Originally Posted by Johnny Look
"Evil nations" ? Aren't we all supposedly god's sons ? Or only those who believe ?
If I ask god for help against an enemy, will be god be against him ? Even if he is a devout christian himself ?



God created all of us, but that doesn't mean we all chose to honor him.

Proverbs 14:34
"Righteousness exalteth a nation: but sin [is] a reproach to any people."

Christans wouldn't be each others enemies.

If these nations would have repented they would be spared, Nineveh was spared.
Sodom was given a chance but they refused, Lot told them over and over, but they mocked him.



Originally Posted by Johnny Look
By the way what supposedly happened in the 6 day war has been known to be a huge exaggeration by israel in order to motivate the troops (which worked superbly) and was denied by the nations that were supposedly afflicted by those "miracles".
Of course it's all very convenient that this happened in israel, the birthplace of the christian religion, which raises another questions: Will be god against me if israel decides to go at war and invade my country ?

All these questions considered, tell me how can't epicurus's questions be relevant, assuming I'm on the side that's supposedly being destroyed by god.

Like horrendous said, it's ridiculous to think that god would destroy me as easily as he would help. Also the idea that non-believers and sinners end up burning in hell forever only makes it all even better.



America has all the best war equipment in the world, now tell me how many wars they've fought (and won) in 6 days?

Israel is so small compared to the rest of those countries that attacked them, and yet they destroyed the entire Egyptian army.

You can deny the miracles if you want, but you can't deny the fact that winning such a impossible war isn't a miracle itself!

 
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HorrendousGames

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1st February, 2011 at 15:55:23 -


Originally Posted by Austrian W3R3W00F
I guess I'm back to offer my view on things...

I believe God loves us all. But then you have to ask yourself... why aren't we all in heaven if he does love us? This dilemma usually leads people into believing God doesn't exist. The way I see it is this: God DOES love us... but do we love him? I don't believe God would take us all into heaven if we don't love him. I think of it like this: why be friends with someone who hates you or doesn't care about you? If he/she ignores you entirely or kicks you in the teeth, then why would you bestow any kind of special gift upon him/her? Apply this to God. Why would He bestow upon us the privilages of heaven if we hate or ignore him?



So an infinitely wise god has petty human emotions? Even I don't kill or condemn someone to eternal suffering simply because they don't like me, thats the behavior of a cheerleader, not of a "perfectly" supreme being.


Originally Posted by Austrian W3R3W00F
The reason we aren't in heaven with God, I believe, is that God is testing us. He's testing us to see if we love him in return. And God doesn't make us suffer in our daily lives: he simply allows bad things to happen, the same way he allows good things to happen. Like UrbanMonk said, "It rains on the just and the unjust". It also shines on the just and the unjust.

That's life.



What about that guy in Germany who chained up his daughter for her entire life in the basement with no human contact and barely any food. When she was found, she didn't live much longer after that. What kind of a chance did God give to her? Are you seriously considering that is a part of life and we should just accept that she'll get a better life in the next? What about the millions of people currently starving, not because food isn't available, but simply because they don't have the money to pay for it? I bet they thank god for the challenge too. This is one of my problems with religion, rather than fix the problems in society and try to prevent them, we just let them happen, because why fix this world if it's just a test and we get to actually start living in the next?



Originally Posted by Austrian W3R3W00F
Being tested by God is definitely hard. Sometimes, though not very often, I find myself getting mad at God for something, then I snap back and realize, "God allowed it to happen, don't hate him for it". I could take the easy road by apostatizing then consider myself an ex-catholic or an atheist and go about doing whatever the heck I want, with only the law holding me back... but I don't and won't consider it. Without God I feel like my life is empty. I've often thought up scenarios what life without God would be like: It would be about being born, growing up, going to school, getting a job, going to work, retiring, then dying... if you're lucky you might do something great in your life. That's it. But if that's all I have to live for then I wonder what's the point of living? What am I supposed to do with my life? Help companies grow? Just live my life with no questions asked? Get rich or famous but never be truly satisfied?

Without God my world would be a shell. Cramped and hollow. Plus, I can't fathom the concept of completely ending. My body gets buried (hopefully not incinerated) and my soul ceases to exist. I can't grasp that concept without making myself dizzy... In fact I just can't grasp the concept, period.



This is another problem with religion, it's extremely selfish. It's concerned with where "I" am going to go when "I" die and what happens to "me". A lot of Christians bring up this same issue, and I assure you, it's an argument from ignorance (not saying you're ignorant, that's just what it's called). As an Atheist, I can assure you my life is not empty, in fact when I became an Atheist, that's when I felt that my life had meaning. It kind of a odd to tell people that this life is meaningless and only a test to see if you're in god's "in-crowd", then that your life means more to you than any non-believer.


Originally Posted by UrbanMonkUmm, you did it backwards.

You were supposed to post that first, then I was supposed to respond with my previous post.

You know, it's interesting how God allowed all the evil nations that existed back during the time of Genesis when he could have destroyed them outright. He knew they wouldn't repent, but yet he allowed them to live.

God will allow evil to go on as long as it doesn't affect his people, as soon as it does he destroys them.

See Sodom and Gomorrah, a good example of this.

The Sodomites could do what they wanted, but as soon as Lot was in the city that's when God decided to destroy it. Go read it for yourself in Genesis 19.


God isn't a machine, there aren't certain buttons that cause him to react a certain way. He treats every situation differently based on the circumstances.
Which is why Epicurus questions are irrelevant.

These types of things didn't just happen in the Bible mind. Try Googling "miracles of the six day war."
Remember that God always rests on the 7th day.



But you're claiming that he's a being of infinite wisdom and power, he can't think of a different way to deal with the situation than mass murder? Epicurus's questions are not irrelevant, because it shows the Christian god for what he is, petty, heartless and hypocritical. He claims to love all of his children and wishes he can save them all, but the bible is riddled with instances of God killing whole countries because of the actions of a few of it's inhabitants. Yeah, it really sounds like he was trying.

You should probably consult this list again that was "taken out of context",
http://www.infidels.org/library/modern/donald_morgan/atrocity.html

 
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HorrendousGames

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1st February, 2011 at 16:02:14 -


Originally Posted by UrbanMonk
You can deny the miracles if you want, but you can't deny the fact that winning such a impossible war isn't a miracle itself!



Really? War isn't a miracle. If god likes war and he can't find an alternative (like so many humans have), then clearly humans are better than this "god". If a big ball of fire appeared in the sky and God said to everyone "don't fight this war" and the war wasn't fought, yeah that might be a miracle.

Which brings up another thing. If god is able to appear to people and groups of people, why doesn't he? You do realize that if God appeared to me and the people around me, that'd be all he'd need to do to convince me, or any skeptic, therefore saving more of his children. But wait, he chooses to only visit the mentally insane, ah. Well that explains it. And how come these people only have visions of the god of their culture?

 
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1st February, 2011 at 17:38:58 -

I think a lot of people are applying human characteristics and logic to God - God, in Abrahamic religions at least, is not like that.

 
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HorrendousGames

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1st February, 2011 at 17:49:59 -

And I think that's a cop out.

How can you say that he knows right from wrong, that people are "evil", that he knows if people love him back and that he's supposed to love unconditionally, then when everything god does that is considered "wrong" or "immoral" is a different set of logic or non-human characteristics?

Sounds more like that people know the god of Abrahamic religions thinks and acts exactly like an bronze age barbarian (ironic since he was authored during the period), and using the "god is beyond human logic" as a convenient way to convince themselves that he does not.

 
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1st February, 2011 at 18:03:42 -

"God moves in mysterious ways." so it says. He isn't a man. He is literally beyond our concept. That what makes him a God and not a man. (Just being Devil's Advocate here (now there's irony)).

Just for the record, I'm not a believer in a God like that (in fact, like I've mentioned, I am not sure either way). I think organised religion is daft. Who needs to club together to believe in God?

 
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1st February, 2011 at 18:12:14 -


Originally Posted by HorrendousGames

Originally Posted by UrbanMonk
You can deny the miracles if you want, but you can't deny the fact that winning such a impossible war isn't a miracle itself!



Really? War isn't a miracle. If god likes war and he can't find an alternative (like so many humans have), then clearly humans are better than this "god".





Winning the war was the miracle, not the war itself.

God will only let humans go so far. It's part of the free choice that he gave us.
God didn't want a war, that's why he allowed Israel to end it so quickly. 6 days...7th day God rested.

God made us in his image, and so as a result we have the same traits as God. We can feel jealous, we can hate, and we can love.



@Boothman: God ordained having tabernacles when he led Israel through the wilderness. They weren't clubbing together to believe in God so much as they were just obeying him. Many people believe in God that don't go to church, but that doesn't mean they're living right, helping one another is part of being a true Christan. United we stand divided we fall and all that.

Edited by UrbanMonk

 
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1st February, 2011 at 19:07:11 -


Originally Posted by UrbanMonk

Originally Posted by HorrendousGames

Originally Posted by UrbanMonk
You can deny the miracles if you want, but you can't deny the fact that winning such a impossible war isn't a miracle itself!



Really? War isn't a miracle. If god likes war and he can't find an alternative (like so many humans have), then clearly humans are better than this "god".





Winning the war was a miracle, and it was won in 6 days no less.

God will only let humans go so far. It's part of the free choice that he gave us.
God didn't want a war, that's why he allowed Israel to end it so quickly.

God made us in his image, and so as a result we have the same traits as God. We can feel jealous, we can hate, and we can love.



@Boothman: God ordained having tabernacles when he led Israel through the wilderness. They weren't clubbing together to believe in God so much as they were just obeying him. Many people believe in God that don't go to church, but that doesn't mean they're living right, helping one another is part of being a true Christan. United we stand divided we fall and all that.



Humans cause war and humans end war. Only ignorance on the side who won, claims that God is the reason the other side lost. Do Christians ever think about anyone else's beliefs for anything other then 'wrong'? How do you think your enemy on the battlefield feels about God. Probably pretty similar to you. And that God is on his side, not yours.

And plenty of animals (anyone with truly beloved pets will agree too) have powerful emotions. Even something as seemingly emotionless as a lizard can show emotion if you show it enough attention and learn to understand how it communicates it's emotion. I think it's very arrogant to assume that WE are the image of God.

Does deity exist? Yes. I've seen enough and feel strongly enough to believe it does. But the Christian idea of God just feels so wrong, selfish, arrogant, and I just find it so difficult to believe. It's like walking around with blinders on. You see only what you want to look at, and ignore that everyone else has an idea too, and believes equally as strongly about theirs as you do.

There was an old story originating from India, I read in a book I got some time ago. I wont go into much detail, in fact I'll probably get some details wrong... but it goes something like this:

A number of blind men were asked to walk up to an elephant and describe what it was like and how it related to God.
One of the blind men had held onto the leg and said that the elephant was strong and supportive like a pillar, and that is why it was like God.
Another blind man held onto the tail and said that the elephant was like a rope, and that it would save him from danger, and that is why it was like God.
And another of the blind men who was holding onto the back of the elephant, said that it was like a mortar. Powerful and offensive to anyone who opposed him, and that's how it was like God.

After all of the blind men described their experience with the elephant and why it was correct, they began to fight about who was correct about why the elephant was like God. The man who introduced them to the elephant however stopped them and told them that they were all correct. Confused, he continued to explain that all of the ways they had described and so many more they couldn't even think of, were correct.


Just because you see one aspect of divinity, doesn't mean your way is the only correct way.

Again, this is entirely loose from memory, but I do think it gets the point across quite well.

 
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1st February, 2011 at 19:08:54 -

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Do not murder. Some people need belief as fish need bicycle, and I need war like I need an elephant in my bathroom.

 
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1st February, 2011 at 19:28:47 -


Originally Posted by SiLVERFIRE
Humans cause war and humans end war. Only ignorance on the side who won, claims that God is the reason the other side lost. Do Christians ever think about anyone else's beliefs for anything other then 'wrong'? How do you think your enemy on the battlefield feels about God. Probably pretty similar to you. And that God is on his side, not yours.



Agreed, the enemies certainly felt like they're their god would help them. (EDIT: spelling)


Originally Posted by SiLVERFIRE
And plenty of animals (anyone with truly beloved pets will agree too) have powerful emotions. Even something as seemingly emotionless as a lizard can show emotion if you show it enough attention and learn to understand how it communicates it's emotion. I think it's very arrogant to assume that WE are the image of God.



I agree that animals have emotion, I just don't think that have a conscience. They don't have the ability to question why they feel emotion or question whether they exist.


Originally Posted by SiLVERFIRE
Does deity exist? Yes. I've seen enough and feel strongly enough to believe it does. But the Christian idea of God just feels so wrong, selfish, arrogant, and I just find it so difficult to believe. It's like walking around with blinders on. You see only what you want to look at, and ignore that everyone else has an idea too, and believes equally as strongly about theirs as you do.



I know about most every other god there is. It's an interesting subject to me.
I see everyone else's ideas, and they think we're wrong.

Does that make them selfish too?


Originally Posted by SiLVERFIRE
There was an old story originating from India, I read in a book I got some time ago. I wont go into much detail, in fact I'll probably get some details wrong... but it goes something like this:

...

Just because you see one aspect of divinity, doesn't mean your way is the only correct way.

Again, this is entirely loose from memory, but I do think it gets the point across quite well.



I've read that story before as well. It was one of those stories my parents used to read to me when I was young.

Yes, everyone knows God in different ways, but the following are incorrect. (And I think you will agree)

-Humans/Animals are God
-God lies
-There are multiple gods (Why would he be in parts?)

I wouldn't say you could logically agree with any of these. If you can, please explain why you think so.

Edited by UrbanMonk

 
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