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Old 20 Feb 2017, 02:37 PM   #664995 / #26
Koyaanisqatsi
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I too am a skeptic when it comes to Noah's Ark. I would say that all things are possible with God
Then you have an automatic "out" in regard to any critical thought, which is fine and all but you noted we have "free will," the purpose of which is supposedly to allow us to critically determine for ourselves (i.e., without being influenced or coerced by God) whether or not to believe such a being exists. So how do you reconcile the fact that "free will" necessarily requires the ability for accurate critical thought in a universe where "all things are possible with God"?

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but I also would have said that whether or not this story was symbolic or real, it doesn't take away from the over-all true message of the Bible.
Well, let's parse that a bit. What is "symbolic" about the story? The story points are:
  1. An omni-capable being created our universe according to an ineffable plan;
  2. Central to that plan (evidently) was the creation of humanity; beings with autonomous free will;
  3. Somehow, in spite of the being's omni-abilities and due to humanity's free will, the human "experiment" failed in the being's omniscient eyes;
  4. The being decides to violently destroy the experiment by killing every human being en mass in a global flood--a desperate, suffering, terrifying, slow drowning death instead of just "blinking" everyone out of existence--and start over by choosing one flawed man and his equally faulty family to somehow gather all land animals (fish and birds need not apply) on a boat he builds himself to commit incest in order to do the exact same thing over again in regard to humanity;
  5. Millenia later, the same being has to send himself/his son to Earth to "redeem" humanity once again, rendering the entire story of Noah (symbolically or literally) absolutely pointless.

We'll stop there for a moment to digest. In Genesis we have three cataclysmic events where God wipes out his own creation and then finally, with Noah, he supposedly gets it right this time only to have it once again go wrong to the point where he has to actually trifurcate and incarnate in order to "save" humanity once again in Jesus and that act still requires a "second coming" to do the same thing.

So, separate if you can your own indoctrination and assess that story from afar. An all-knowing, all-powerful magical being creates a race of lesser beings because it wants them to do "good"; that race somehow fails to do "good" at least four times and the "solution" every time is for this all-knowing, all-powerful being to do the same thing over and over and over. He changes nothing; he knows before he does anything what the outcome is going to be; and in spite of "all things are possible" to him, we are not.

So, again, what is that "symbolic" of?

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What's really funny(strange) about this story, is that this was the Jew's baby.
Um...

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This was their religion, their prophecies. And then even they rejected Jesus as the Messiah.
No, they don't believe Jesus is a messiah (there are different types of messiah). They don't "reject.'' To "reject" would necessarily mean it is true.

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Like the prophecy said - the stone that was rejected would
become the cornerstone.
Let me demonstrate very easily the problem with that logic. I am the Messiah. That you just "rejected" me as the Messiah has fulfilled Biblical prophecy and therefore proved that I am in fact the Messiah.

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Old 20 Feb 2017, 02:45 PM   #664996 / #27
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I think he does know that and is being quite brave to tackle us.
No doubt. I'm just looking for something from left field.
Yes, the standard arguments are a waste of everyone's time. We could just cut and paste the responses from a hundred earlier threads.
Well I feel that when someone is new to SC we should cut them some slack and not expect them to comb through ancient threads.
I didn't say that. I said find the arguments for them and paste them here.
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Old 20 Feb 2017, 03:49 PM   #665000 / #28
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Thank you all for engaging with me in this discussion so far. Here are In just predicting the coming of the Messiah, there are over some 300 prophecies in the Old Testament that were fulfilled in the New Testament by Jesus Christ. These are prophecies that were written in there by the Jews, between 1500 and 300 BC, at minimum, a full 3 centuries before our carpenter arrives. When you read those prophecies in the Old Testament and match them up with their fulfillment, it sends shivers along the spine. How many other books contain the proof of fulfilled prophecy?
It's not difficult at all to write a book that "fulfills" prophecies written in an earlier book...
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Old 20 Feb 2017, 04:06 PM   #665002 / #29
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Thank you all for engaging with me in this discussion so far. Here are In just predicting the coming of the Messiah, there are over some 300 prophecies in the Old Testament that were fulfilled in the New Testament by Jesus Christ. These are prophecies that were written in there by the Jews, between 1500 and 300 BC, at minimum, a full 3 centuries before our carpenter arrives. When you read those prophecies in the Old Testament and match them up with their fulfillment, it sends shivers along the spine. How many other books contain the proof of fulfilled prophecy?
It's not difficult at all to write a book that "fulfills" prophecies written in an earlier book...
Particularly when the second book uses the phrase, "this took place to fulfill what was spoken" numerous times:

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Matthew 1:18-22 - Joseph Accepts Jesus as His Son

18 This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. 19 Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet he did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.

20 But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. 21 She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins.”

22All this took place to fulfill what the Lord had said through the prophet
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Matthew 2: Jesus Comes to Jerusalem as King

2:1 As they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus sent two disciples, 2 saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. 3 If anyone says anything to you, say that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”

4 This took place to fulfill what was spoken through the prophet
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John 18:8-9

8 Jesus answered, “I told you that I am he. If you are looking for me, then let these men go.” 9 This happened so that the words he had spoken would be fulfilled: “I have not lost one of those you gave me.”
It's no great trick to take a book full of things that are "prophesied" to happen at some point in the future and then in the future do those things "to fulfill what was spoken." Assuming of course any of this narrative is any way factual and not just made up by religious zealots.

Did everyone riding on a donkey to popular acclaim fulfill prophecy?
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Old 20 Feb 2017, 04:37 PM   #665003 / #30
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Yeah, riding on a donkey is quite an amazing stunt.

Jesus to the apostles: "Hey, where are we on the list?"

Peter: "I think it's time for you to run around the Seven Hills of Rome seven times".

Jesus: "Huh? Don't remember that one."

Peter: "Oh, wait, that was Erronius in A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum. He had to do that to get rid of an evil spirit. Though really it was just to get rid of him for a while so Pseudolus could use his house for a scam played on the Roman Captain Miles Gloriosus. Never mind."

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Old 20 Feb 2017, 06:46 PM   #665013 / #31
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I think a better title might be: (Dis)Prove the validity of the Bible, or something along that line.
That wasn't my point at all, although I can see how you'd get that. My point was, why does it matter what's in the Bible? You have said that Heaven and Hell (or whatever interpretation of that you happen to go for) it the reason it matters. My issue with that then boils down to two things. The first is that if there are more hoops than Matthew 7:12, then that sort of invalidates Matthew 7:12 which makes a spectacularly dissonant position. Let's just start there.
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 02:38 AM   #665039 / #32
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God is like a light, a shining light of love in a universe that is otherwise cold and dark. The further you travel from the light, the colder and darker it gets. Being that we have free-will, there are those who will choose the darkness forever. This would be the ‘eternal damnation’ – self inflicted. {Tubby's emphasis}
While that may sound reasonable to a lot of folks, it is inconsistent with the way some read scripture. See this for instance.

I quote from that source below---
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God has ordained to redeem a remnant of humanity to salvation. These elect individuals were chosen before the creation of the world...
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 04:58 AM   #665060 / #33
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Since the crap is so vague, people are free to interpret it however they want, which is why there are so many versions. If it was "truth" and actually came from a god, there would only be one and everybody would follow it without hesitation. Jabbering about "free will" and being blinded by "sin" is just an excuse for the fact that there is no coherent message to follow, just ancient ordinary men saying random shit.
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 07:35 AM   #665066 / #34
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1IC, the Bible had precursors that you may be unaware of. It combines Semitic folklore with quasi-historical records of the Jewish empire. Although Deuteronomy was probably compiled in the 7th century BCE under King Josiah, the folkloric tales go back to well before the Jewish era. The oldest Semitic literature descends from Akkadian, specifically the Gilgamesh epic, which was itself adapted from the Sumerian "Bilgamesh" tale. Therein you will find the first reference to Noah's ark (See, for example, The Search for Noah's Ark). The builder was not named Noah, but Utnapishtim, and the story was quite a bit different. The West Semitic Canaanite Hebrews inherited and modified that folkloric tale to suit their own narrative.
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 08:25 AM   #665068 / #35
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I think a better title might be: (Dis)Prove the validity of the Bible, or something along that line.
And talking about "prophesies" does not prove anything unless you can prove the specific things "prophesied" actually took place. You have stories in a book. Rowling could have made "prophesies" in the Harry Potter series (maybe she did, never read it). But she never claimed the events happened in real life.

Is not most of history stories from a book. How much of history do you not believe occured? How about Buddha. Was that just made up? Yes, the stories of the Bible are fantastical. True. But those crazy thing, and those miracles, and those prophesies would seem logical if indeed we were talking about the real thing - God. So you must concede, if we were talking about a real God, all powerful, creator of the universe and the micro-verse and everything - then stuffing a bunch of animals onto a boat for 40 days, or walking on water, or bringing people back to life - that would be possible by God.

So you have the first half of the Bible written by Jews from about 1500-300 BC. It's the old testament, and its full of stuff that none of them probably really understood. But they knew they were waiting for this 'Messiah'. That part I believe is true.

Three hundred years go by (I guess they wanted the con job to seem really real, as you're saying) so they waited that long, and then they (not the Jews but someone) planted the Jesus baby into the right place, and had him perform every thing so that it would match up with the old testament prophecies. He fakes a bunch of miracles, pretends to die on the cross, pretends to come back, then he disappears and writes it all down and voila, you have the Bible and Jesus and the Jews really put one over on us - because they knew that this would make us a) look like idiots and b) we would then follow the future governments a lot better and c) we would give money to the vatican. Is that what you're saying?

I believe the Bible is there to teach us about God, and how he gave all of the glory in the universe to his son. Wouldn't you do the same? But he, Jesus, went through a real sacrifice to save us, and so it is necessary for those who want to bask with him in glory, to at least be aware of this sacrifice that occurred, and to be thankful for it. Imagine if you sacrificed your son for the sake of the equivalent of a bunch of ants. Some of the ants say thank you and the god(s) are pleased. Some ants turn around and say 'F U God', we don't need your f'in sacrifice, and the god(s) are displeased.

It doesn't surprise me that you some of you won't believe something that happened 2000 years ago. There are people who denied the Holocaust never happened, and there are still people alive who were there, and we have film, etc. So if your mind is bent on denying something, you will deny it no matter what the evidence.

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Old 21 Feb 2017, 11:39 AM   #665075 / #36
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So you have the first half of the Bible written by Jews from about 1500-300 BC. It's the old testament, and its full of stuff that none of them probably really understood. But they knew they were waiting for this 'Messiah'. That part I believe is true.
Uh, no. No, it was not the "Old Testament". And no one was confused by it. It was just "The Scriptures", and the Messiah promised in those Scriptures - the perfect king who will rebuild the temple, restore the line of David to its former glory, and rule Israel in peace and justice for eternity- has not shown up yet. Even Christians had to write a whole extra book of prophecy, the Apocalypse of John, to explain why Jesus failed to fulfill the vast majority of the prophecies written about the Messiah.
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 11:45 AM   #665076 / #37
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You do seem to me to indulge in circular reasoning: the bible is history because it is the voice of God; we know about God because of the bible. So Noah is really unbelievable, but because God can do anything it could have happened. But that is hardly evidence for Noah or for God.

The bible is not straightforward history (inasmuch as there is ever any such a thing). It is primarily a set of religious stories and recommendations. How do you distinguish between the bible and the Arabian Nights, Grimm's fairy tales or Homer's Iliad? (The Iliad is also supposed to be history.) It is also a mistake to regard the bible as a single book or even two. It is a ragbag collection of books that owes its modern existence to decisions made by the church on what to include and what to exclude.

The question of the "sacrifice" of Jesus is really a completely separate topic, well worth its own discussion.

Your parable of the ants betrays an apparent misunderstanding of atheism and agnosticism. Non-believers don't say "F U God"; they don't believe that there is a god to whom that can be addressed. It would be like saying "F U Santa Claus".

For someone who does not believe in the existence of God (I give him a capital G so we know we mean that particular god a opposed to the thousands of others such as Thor, Baal, Osiris, Poseidon, Huitzilopochtli...) there is no question of rejecting a supposed sacrifice by him. We don't believe the sacrifice happened either. There may well have been someone named the Aramaic equivalent of Jesus who was crucified by the Romans -- the Romans did a lot of that -- but we see no reason to believe that his death was a divine sacrifice.

I am by no means suggesting that the bible is a lot of deliberate lies or that nothing it recounts could be true, but it really isn't the sort of thing that nowadays we would classify as history.

There is a problem that so much in the bible is without alternative sources or supporting evidence.

Consider the present-day difficulty of disentangling truth, lies and exaggeration, even with modern communications technology. There is Fox News and there is CNN. They often produce conflicting accounts of what is going on now. For example, as a result of watching a late-night Fox News programme and then misunderstanding what he had listened to, Donald Trump amazed Swedes the other day by claiming a non-existent terrorist attack in Sweden. How much more difficult it is to work out what was happening in Palestine 2000 years ago.

Take the stories around the birth of Jesus. Most theologians I have come across think that the biblical accounts about Jesus's birth are fiction, added to the story so as to be able to claim a fulfilled prophecy. If there was a real Jesus, he is usually referred to as "Jesus of Nazareth" so he came from Nazareth. He wasn't born in Bethlehem. There is no supporting evidence of the Roman requirement for the Jesus family to go to Bethlehem to be taxed. It wasn't the sort of thing the Romans did. But there was this verse in Micah:

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But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.
And so Matthew has the wise men tell Herod:

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And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet,

And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.
It is fairly clear that that is added to the story to make sure that Jesus did conform to what was seen as a prophecy.

As with the crucifixion, the gospels don't even agree with one another on what happened around the birth of Jesus.
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 01:58 PM   #665083 / #38
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Take the stories around the birth of Jesus. Most theologians I have come across think that the biblical accounts about Jesus's birth are fiction, added to the story so as to be able to claim a fulfilled prophecy. If there was a real Jesus, he is usually referred to as "Jesus of Nazareth" so he came from Nazareth. He wasn't born in Bethlehem. There is no supporting evidence of the Roman requirement for the Jesus family to go to Bethlehem to be taxed. It wasn't the sort of thing the Romans did. But there was this verse in Micah:

Quote:
But thou, Bethlehem Ephratah, though thou be little among the thousands of Judah, yet out of thee shall he come forth unto me that is to be ruler in Israel; whose goings forth have been from of old, from everlasting.
And so Matthew has the wise men tell Herod:

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And they said unto him, In Bethlehem of Judaea: for thus it is written by the prophet,

And thou Bethlehem, in the land of Juda, art not the least among the princes of Juda: for out of thee shall come a Governor, that shall rule my people Israel.
It is fairly clear that that is added to the story to make sure that Jesus did conform to what was seen as a prophecy.

As with the crucifixion, the gospels don't even agree with one another on what happened around the birth of Jesus.
<chortle>

I think there is the element of "the Jews refusing to acknowledge the wonder of God" by having Herod, the King of the Jews, fly in to a rage upon hearing of the birth and then, in one version of the story, sending henchmen to hunt down and execute this child. But the 'wise men from the East' recognize the divinity of the babe and follow the signs to the manger. These men are 'magi'....diviners of the stars and priests of the Zoroastrian faith. They are not Jews, but goyim....The Jews refused the savior and the gentiles accepted him....from the beginning. It is an underpinning of the testamental claim of the transference of the covenant with the Lord from the stiff-necked and unbending Jews with hearts of stone, to the compassionate and accepting gentile Christians.

Of course, what was lost to most of us was that most real Jews hated Herod because he was NOT a Jew and he was a puppet of the military occupiers of Judea. But modern Christians portray him as the hateful, jealous, and murderous king of the scoffing Jews. Judaism itself, as practiced in the first century, was not a unified, cohesive system, but a collection of sectarian splinter groups, both religious and political, arrayed against each other and engaged in murderous exchanges. See Flavius Josephus' histories, for christ's sake.

And, I note that our guest throws around that term "messiah" without understanding its usage in first century Judea at all. The author of the Pauline epistles was the first user of the concept of 'Christ' as those called Christians currently understand it. Prior to him, the term 'christ' was a Greek derivation of the Aramaic 'mesach' or messiah. It indicated that the bearer of the term was a 'chosen of God'....in the scriptures, the previously designated individual was Cyrus, Emperor of the Persians. As I understand it, the term was widely used to describe the likes of priests of the Temple, with the meaning, "the anointed of YHWH". It quite literally meant 'greasy'...bodily covered in oil; which, of course, meant different things to cultural Jews than it did to cultural Greeks.

I suggest that you might want to garner a better understanding of the milieu in which the savior tales arose...like these texts:

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Old 21 Feb 2017, 02:08 PM   #665084 / #39
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It doesn't surprise me that you some of you won't believe something that happened 2000 years ago. There are people who denied the Holocaust never happened, and there are still people alive who were there, and we have film, etc. So if your mind is bent on denying something, you will deny it no matter what the evidence.
Yep...And, so far as I can see, you are doing a bang-up job of denying anything which does not match with your belief system. You ignore shiploads of evidence to press your fairy tales as some kind of 'truth'.

Out of interest, do you believe Peter Parker was bitten by a radioactive spider and gained miraculous powers? We've shiploads of comparable evidence to support that contention. In print and on film, no less.

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Old 21 Feb 2017, 02:10 PM   #665085 / #40
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I think a better title might be: (Dis)Prove the validity of the Bible, or something along that line.
And talking about "prophesies" does not prove anything unless you can prove the specific things "prophesied" actually took place. You have stories in a book. Rowling could have made "prophesies" in the Harry Potter series (maybe she did, never read it). But she never claimed the events happened in real life.
Is not most of history stories from a book. How much of history do you not believe occured?
That's trivially easy to answer. Actual history does not have supernatural events. Mythology does. It's true that the ancients made no distinction between the two. But then they were totally ignorant about the way the world actually works. And here you are, following in their footsteps. You believe certain stories from back then are true. By your own admission, simply because you want them to be true. Why don't you believe in Zeus or Thor? Because they don't "offer" you anything.

This was actually the beginning of my disbelief (I grew up as the captive of fundamentalists). One time I asked my dad: "Back in the bible, they had miracles out the wazoo, so it was easy to believe. All we get is talk. That's actually unfair, because they got a huge advantage over us. Nobody but the catholics claims miracles happen today, and somehow these "events" seem to happen only in front of people who already believe. Why don't we get miracles?"

He hemmed and hawed around and finally said "Well, they just don't do it any more." Good one, Dad.

One time I started a thread on Christian Forums called "Alexander's Rag-Tag Band" (a play on the old song "Alexander's Ragtime Band").

I said "What if Alexander the Great did all of his conquering with armies composed of trained gorillas rather than men? Or Orcs. Would he still be considered a historical figure? Or a mythological one?"

There's also King Arthur, who most historians think was legend rather than a real person.

Also, the truth or falsehood of ancient history makes no difference to our daily lives (not counting the "doomed to repeat it" quote). If Alexander never existed at all, who gives a shit?

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Old 21 Feb 2017, 03:43 PM   #665088 / #41
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I think a better title might be: (Dis)Prove the validity of the Bible, or something along that line.
And talking about "prophesies" does not prove anything unless you can prove the specific things "prophesied" actually took place. You have stories in a book. Rowling could have made "prophesies" in the Harry Potter series (maybe she did, never read it). But she never claimed the events happened in real life.

Is not most of history stories from a book. How much of history do you not believe occured?
Yes, a fair amount is fabrication, from Herodotus on. This is why various chroniclers are adjudged for their veracity and all documents are measured against other sources. Multiple attestation which support each other is positive...Do you really wish to delve in to the minutae of historiography? Then, you should pick up somebody like, say, Robert M. Price. His The Incredible shrinking Son of Man: How Reliable Is the Gospel Tradition? is an excellent compendium of critiques of claims like yours.

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How about Buddha. Was that just made up?
Yeah, probably, most, if not all. Are you interested in going through all the major 'teachers' of the various religious traditions worldwide? I'd be interested to know which ones you believe in....

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Yes, the stories of the Bible are fantastical. True. But those crazy thing, and those miracles, and those prophesies would seem logical if indeed we were talking about the real thing - God. So you must concede, if we were talking about a real God, all powerful, creator of the universe and the micro-verse and everything - then stuffing a bunch of animals onto a boat for 40 days, or walking on water, or bringing people back to life - that would be possible by God.
So...If something were possible to the impossible, it would be possible. Do you realize how incoherent that sounds?

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So you have the first half of the Bible written by Jews from about 1500-300 BC. It's the old testament, and its full of stuff that none of them probably really understood. But they knew they were waiting for this 'Messiah'. That part I believe is true.
Some of them were, others were not. Others, particularly those who dominated the Temple in Jerusalem held no such belief. Only small sectarian groups with divergent beliefs from those of the existing religious power structure believed in the hooey the Christians finally embraced.

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Three hundred years go by (I guess they wanted the con job to seem really real, as you're saying) so they waited that long, and then they (not the Jews but someone) planted the Jesus baby into the right place, and had him perform every thing so that it would match up with the old testament prophecies. He fakes a bunch of miracles, pretends to die on the cross, pretends to come back, then he disappears and writes it all down and voila, you have the Bible and Jesus and the Jews really put one over on us - because they knew that this would make us a) look like idiots and b) we would then follow the future governments a lot better and c) we would give money to the vatican. Is that what you're saying?
None of it happened. It is gentile midrash upon the tales of Elijah and Elisha narratives now in Judges and Chronicles of the Hebrew Bible. Stir in some rehashed Deutronomic texts disguised as 'Pauline epistles' and add in a shipload of widespread superstition from sources like the Sibyl, textproof to cherry-pick miracles and prophecies, stir and serve to the naive and gullible. It is a tale retold to teach. The character who carries the story never actually existed; he is a literary construct, a mythic figure.

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I believe the Bible is there to teach us about God, and how he gave all of the glory in the universe to his son. Wouldn't you do the same?
Why should I? I don't believe there is any such thing and there is no need to 'give all the glory' (whatever the fuck that means) to non-existent entities for no known reason.

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Old 21 Feb 2017, 05:27 PM   #665091 / #42
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But those crazy thing, and those miracles, and those prophesies would seem logical if indeed we were talking about the real thing - God.
That's a revealing use of the term "logical."

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So you must concede, if we were talking about a real God, all powerful, creator of the universe and the micro-verse and everything - then stuffing a bunch of animals onto a boat for 40 days
The Bible does not say that God used any kind of magic to "stuff" ALL the animals of the earth onto a boat for 40 days. Just the opposite in fact. He instructs Noah to build a boat. Why would he do that if he was then just going to miracle the stuffing of the animals? It's ok for God to intervene in regard to miracling the animals all fitting, but when it comes to Noah he must physically build the boat? Why? Let me guess, mysterious ways, right? Of course right.

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, or walking on water, or bringing people back to life - that would be possible by God.
As would creating humanity without flaws in the first place since that was evidently the goal. As would simply blinking humanity out of existence and completely avoiding all of that unnecessary suffering, the boat, the flood, the incest, etc., etc., etc.

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So you have the first half of the Bible written by Jews from about 1500-300 BC.
You think it took twelve hundred years to write the Scriptures?

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Three hundred years go by (I guess they wanted the con job to seem really real, as you're saying) so they waited that long, and then they (not the Jews but someone) planted the Jesus baby into the right place, and had him perform every thing so that it would match up with the old testament prophecies.
Sigh. I know it's not possible, but as you say, "with god all things are possible," so try for one moment to pretend that we're talking about say The Books of Koyaanisqatsi not your bible. And in that book are a whole bunch of claims that say, "And Koyaanisqatsi did sit upon the ground in order to fulfill the prophecy" and "Koyaanisqatsi drove a bus as it was spoken of by the prophets" and the like. And then one of the books says something like "And the crowds did know that he was the Messiah for he turned apples into oranges and brought the dead to life as it was written."

NOW you can clearly see why that is all just unsubstantiated claims and you'd be a fool to consider any of them in any way true or evidence of prophecy fulfilled or otherwise without some VERY strong evidence to corroborate any of that yes? But you don't have anything like that, so are you going to just believe that I can raise people from the dead because you just read a claim that I can raise people from the dead? That would be preposterous, yet that is exactly what you are doing.

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I believe the Bible is there to teach us about God Koyaanisqatsi
Samey samey.

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Imagine if you sacrificed your son for the sake of the equivalent of a bunch of ants.
Let's do precisely that. Aside from the fact that there would be no reason for you to do that, what does that even mean? Applying the narrative of the New Testament, it would mean that you'd be killing your own son/yourself in order to stop you from punishing the ants, because their ancient queen and one other ant disobeyed your instructions thousands of years ago. Why in the name of all that is holy would you require of yourself the unnecessary killing of yourself to appease your own wrath in regard to what two ants did millennia prior? Why not just forgive the offspring of those ants? You are all-loving and omnibenevolent, right? Plus, because you are all-knowing, you know exactly what is in each and every ants' little beating heart and head, so you know before you created any of the ants precisely which ones turn out "good" and which ones turn out "bad" so what does ANY of this nonsense about "sacrificing" yourself to yourself in order to stop you from punishing them have to do with anything at all? It's a completely pointless/unnecessary elaborate sequence of events that ultimately makes absolutely no sense and yes that means to an "ineffable being" as well. You can't throw the word "logical" around selectively.

Again, if we have "free will" then we MUST be able to properly and accurately judge the actions of such a being in order to freely choose to obey/follow/believe in him (whatever that means), so that in turn necessarily means we MUST be able to at least ask such a being why they would require the sacrifice of themselves to themselves to stop their own wrath when they could just simply stop their own wrath (or not have wrath in the first place, because they already know the outcome)!

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It doesn't surprise me that you some of you won't believe something that happened 2000 years ago. There are people who denied the Holocaust never happened, and there are still people alive who were there, and we have film, etc. So if your mind is bent on denying something, you will deny it no matter what the evidence.
You have film of Jesus' resurrection? No. You have, at best, a handful of anonymous individuals from thousands of years ago who claim to be recalling first hand, yet differing and incompatible accounts that they could not possibly have personally witnessed, alleging a resurrection. The person(s) we call "Mark" was supposedly the first to write what we call the "passion narrative," which is the first "full account" (if one can call it that) of Jesus' alleged teachings/life/death and even it does not end with Jesus' resurrection. It ends with an account of some women going to Jesus' tomb, finding it open and a "young man" sitting inside who tells them that Jesus "has risen" (not resurrected; just "risen") and is in the town so go see him. The end.

Later authors then added more to the end of that story, thus further rendering it impossible to be a first hand, eyewitness account.

Now, YOU have been indoctrinated into thinking, "Well, it's ALL 'inspired by' God," which of course means nothing. What you're supposed to think is that this means everything in a select sequence of books known as "The Bible" is true and/or told to the authors by God and therefore true, so when "Mark" or "Matthew" tells you about a sequence of events the authors were not personally there to witness--such as when Jesus goes off on his own to beg himself/god to let this cup pass or to confront the devil--you just skip over the fact that it could not possibly be first person, historically accurate journalism and accept some of it (at your choosing) to be "fantastical" but really it's all 100% true, because the bible says it's 100% true and it is we--the non-believers--who simply refuse to take the evidence as sufficient because we are in denial no matter what you say, which is utterly false.

Again, I can prove that to you by simply replacing "God" (or "Jesus") in any of the above with "Koyaanisqatsi", but more to the point, I, personally, would be ECSTATIC if you actually had evidence proving your claim, because it would mean there is no death; Republicans will all burn eternally in hell; etc., etc., etc.

So please--literally for the love of "god"--provide us with the evidence, because saying, "The Bible" is not providing us with any evidence. That's not a denial; that's a fact. It is not evidence any more than my writing, "I am the Messiah" is evidence that I am in fact "the" Messiah. You know this is true, yet you are the one denying it. Consider that if nothing else.

Convincing yourself that anecdotal claims from people you don't know that lived thousands of years ago are in fact true accounts does not in turn make them true accounts. You would NEVER even begin to accept such standards in regard to anything else in the universe, yet when it comes to just these specific beliefs, it just is true, because it's true, because it is and that's that. The very definition of a closed mind.

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Old 21 Feb 2017, 05:54 PM   #665092 / #43
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This was actually the beginning of my disbelief (I grew up as the captive of fundamentalists). One time I asked my dad: "Back in the bible, they had miracles out the wazoo, so it was easy to believe. All we get is talk. That's actually unfair, because they got a huge advantage over us.
As a kid who was expected to memorize a Bible verse each week, I was aware that Acts 10:34 said God does not show favoritism, and Hebrews 13:8 says God [technically Jesus, but our church stressed that God and Jesus are of one essence and therefore will not do things to contradict one another] never changes. In accordance with that we-- all of us-- should still be in "the age of miracles," as it is sometimes put. A Sunday school teacher explained the problem away: "The Bible has been distributed everywhere around the world, so anyone who is motivated to read it can do so, such that God doesn't need to manifest Himself in such direct ways anymore."
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 07:02 PM   #665096 / #44
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This was actually the beginning of my disbelief (I grew up as the captive of fundamentalists). One time I asked my dad: "Back in the bible, they had miracles out the wazoo, so it was easy to believe. All we get is talk. That's actually unfair, because they got a huge advantage over us.
As a kid who was expected to memorize a Bible verse each week, I was aware that Acts 10:34 said God does not show favoritism, and Hebrews 13:8 says God [technically Jesus, but our church stressed that God and Jesus are of one essence and therefore will not do things to contradict one another] never changes. In accordance with that we-- all of us-- should still be in "the age of miracles," as it is sometimes put. A Sunday school teacher explained the problem away: "The Bible has been distributed everywhere around the world, so anyone who is motivated to read it can do so, such that God doesn't need to manifest Himself in such direct ways anymore."
Only slightly less lame than what Dad said. But then, what else can they say/do? Ask goddy-poo for a miracle?
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 07:36 PM   #665100 / #45
MattShizzle
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To put it succinctly, the Bible is the CLAIM, not the evidence.
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 07:59 PM   #665104 / #46
plebian
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I think a better title might be: (Dis)Prove the validity of the Bible, or something along that line.
And talking about "prophesies" does not prove anything unless you can prove the specific things "prophesied" actually took place. You have stories in a book. Rowling could have made "prophesies" in the Harry Potter series (maybe she did, never read it). But she never claimed the events happened in real life.

Is not most of history stories from a book. How much of history do you not believe occured? How about Buddha. Was that just made up? Yes, the stories of the Bible are fantastical. True. But those crazy thing, and those miracles, and those prophesies would seem logical if indeed we were talking about the real thing - God. So you must concede, if we were talking about a real God, all powerful, creator of the universe and the micro-verse and everything - then stuffing a bunch of animals onto a boat for 40 days, or walking on water, or bringing people back to life - that would be possible by God.

So you have the first half of the Bible written by Jews from about 1500-300 BC. It's the old testament, and its full of stuff that none of them probably really understood. But they knew they were waiting for this 'Messiah'. That part I believe is true.

Three hundred years go by (I guess they wanted the con job to seem really real, as you're saying) so they waited that long, and then they (not the Jews but someone) planted the Jesus baby into the right place, and had him perform every thing so that it would match up with the old testament prophecies. He fakes a bunch of miracles, pretends to die on the cross, pretends to come back, then he disappears and writes it all down and voila, you have the Bible and Jesus and the Jews really put one over on us - because they knew that this would make us a) look like idiots and b) we would then follow the future governments a lot better and c) we would give money to the vatican. Is that what you're saying?

I believe the Bible is there to teach us about God, and how he gave all of the glory in the universe to his son. Wouldn't you do the same? But he, Jesus, went through a real sacrifice to save us, and so it is necessary for those who want to bask with him in glory, to at least be aware of this sacrifice that occurred, and to be thankful for it. Imagine if you sacrificed your son for the sake of the equivalent of a bunch of ants. Some of the ants say thank you and the god(s) are pleased. Some ants turn around and say 'F U God', we don't need your f'in sacrifice, and the god(s) are displeased.

It doesn't surprise me that you some of you won't believe something that happened 2000 years ago. There are people who denied the Holocaust never happened, and there are still people alive who were there, and we have film, etc. So if your mind is bent on denying something, you will deny it no matter what the evidence.
To me it just seems irrelevant. Jesus had some interesting things to say. So did Buddha. Beyond that, I just don't see any point in caring.

If God wants us to believe in God using some specific criteria for the definition, then great. God wants something. I want a pony with someone else to take care of it too.

If god is too big to understand, then I already believe in God and nothing changes. If god is as provincial as the Bible makes him out to be, then that is a pretty piss poor excuse for a god and I don't see any reason to care.

If doing my best to be a.decent person isn't enough then I'm OK with that. Besides, eternal life without a body makes for an entirely frustrating scenario.
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Old 21 Feb 2017, 11:42 PM   #665128 / #47
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Originally Posted by 1ICrying
I believe the Bible is there to teach us about God, and how he gave all of the glory in the universe to his son. Wouldn't you do the same? But he, Jesus, went through a real sacrifice to save us, and so it is necessary for those who want to bask with him in glory, to at least be aware of this sacrifice that occurred, and to be thankful for it. Imagine if you sacrificed your son for the sake of the equivalent of a bunch of ants. Some of the ants say thank you and the god(s) are pleased. Some ants turn around and say 'F U God', we don't need your f'in sacrifice, and the god(s) are displeased.
This kind of shit really grinds my gears.

* Save us from what, exactly? From ourselves? Why? Relying on some imaginary being to "save us", if we need saving at all, is laziness.

* I did not ask for this kind of sacrifice, nor would I. I am an adult, and take responsibility for my actions, both good and bad.

* Punishment of an innocent for the actions of another is contrary to all notions of civilised justice. If we humans can come up with a more civilised approach to administering justice, then this doesn't say much for your God.

Besides all this, isn't anything that happens in accordance with your God's plan? After all, an omnimax being would know this. So, all the cruelty, misery and suffering we see is a direct consequence of your God's plan in action. Some God! To cap it all, He demands that we worship him because he is all powerful. Screw that! There is no way I would worship anyone, let alone such a capricious monster.
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Old 22 Feb 2017, 04:13 AM   #665148 / #48
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This has been around forever, but he probably hasn't seen it.

<Jesus knocking on door>
Let me in.
Why?
So I can save you.
From what?
From what I will do to you if you don't let me in.

In other words, they say we need salvation by god, but we actually need salvation from god, since he's the only reason we are in danger.
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Old 22 Feb 2017, 06:06 AM   #665153 / #49
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If there is no 'God' but just 'God matter', then humans will not mean much to it. It will go its own way. That is the concept of a 'non-God Brahman'. It is uninvolved, it does not demand any worship, it does not help damsels in distress. 'Physical energy' is closest to it.
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Old 22 Feb 2017, 06:22 AM   #665155 / #50
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On a related note, I typed secularcafe.com into the browser and it redirected me to christianforums.com. Go figure.
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