Why Christianity? discussion

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message 1: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Is this just human nature or is it unique to religion that practitioners see those who Bible thump a little less than themselves as not Christian enough and those who really lay on the Word thicker than they as religious fruitcakes?

message 2: by David (new)

David Pulliam | 42 comments It’s unique to religious people since non-religious people do not have sacred texts...

message 3: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments David - so, to be in correct context with God you have to hit the sweet spot of faithful enough but not overboard in piety or you're damned? Who determines this - Franklin Graham, the Pope?

message 4: by David (new)

David Pulliam | 42 comments I don’t know what you mean by “correct context with God.”

message 5: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments David - in God's good graces, the opposite of being a minion of Satan.

message 6: by David (new)

David Pulliam | 42 comments Sorry for my confusion but I am still confused. So you’re asking that in order to be in God’s Grace you have to be sufficiently faithful, to what though? And how can you be too pious? I’m not sure that is actually possible....

message 7: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
Everyone grades on a curve - with themselves as the standard. I'm guilty of this and challenge myself endlessly.
I have heroes on opposite ends of the spectrum.

message 8: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments David - you can be too pious by trying to turn the admonitions in NT into mortal sins. Fundamentalists live by this creed.

message 9: by David (new)

David Pulliam | 42 comments That’s not being pious though. Piety is a virtue. One dan never be excessively virtuous since to be excessively virtuous is to not be virtuous.... your question still does not make sense to me I’m afraid.

message 10: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments David - well, I guess that makes 2 of us - your latest post makes no sense to me.

message 11: by David (new)

David Pulliam | 42 comments I’m saying to be excessively pious is a contradiction in terms.

message 12: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
Robert, you do a fair bit of mucking about with How and What People Think. Often a waste of time.

You need to figure out what God thinks. I'm not a Christian because of what someone told me, or how a congregation behaves.

message 13: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
We're all religious fruitcakes - even atheists. Everyone has a standard of belief that they wish to force on others for the greater good of themselves.

Everyone also has a god- for most people: it's themselves. A very small pathetic deity with little power... but still a mighty ego.

message 14: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Sorry Rod - the nature of scientists is to discover things. It is endlessly amusing to me the spurious claims so-called "thinkers" hold as true.

message 15: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
I wouldn't be as noble about scientists as that. Perhaps it's better said, the nature of scientists is to discover THEIR things. (Funding and peer applause permitted of course)

message 16: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Rod - seems to me the "abundant life" churches and prosperity theologians are awfully concerned with funding!

message 17: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
Exactly. See the problem now?

Theology and religion must go deeper than your average corporate Smuck.

message 18: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments OK Rod - I'll accept that for both science and theology - both have areas that definitely need improvement. As I have said before, I'm a Gentile. My only avenue into heaven is through COMPLETE belief in Jesus. Therefore I don't water it down by having one foot in OT Hebrew lore. I take the central tenet of the OT, which outlines the need for a worldwide Savior and then follow his teachings as a disciple. That means I don't even consider the Law, it's not applicable; I don't worry about an eye for an eye, that's pre-Christian. I don't have the Holy Spirit writing the OT or present day commentary - He's safely ensconced inside of me to guide my actions. I don't divide my worship towards Elijah, or David, or Samuel, or Leviticus, or Samson, Jonah, Jeremiah, Daniel, Abraham, Seth or any other Biblical hero. They may or may not have existed. My sole focus is on Jesus and I feel any divided allegiance cheapens the extent of his sacrifice. Similarly, I take some of the writings of Peter and Paul with a grain of salt. They're mortal - they make mistakes. If you're not content with your salvation GUARANTEED through Christ and want to show off how thoroughly holy you are by believing the Bible and a whole bunch of extraneous commentary literally that's your business. But if a devoted Christian thinks that's time poorly spent when you could be exploring the natural law of God from the physical manifestations rather than the behavioral aspect, you should respect him as a fellow sojourner searching for Truth. Without any knowledge of the Universe God created, it seems fatuous to me to think the OT explains much of anything but, if that's all a Believer can handle I suppose that'll have to do. I apologize for calling your readers "mindless" - we all have our limitations.

message 19: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
So why do you blindly trust a few writings of Mathew Mark Luke and John, but not the rest? Is that all your God can conjure up and authorize? How do you know it even did that?

Or is it just a small portion of that story that tickles your fancy?

As for me: I'm obviously an all or nothing guy.

message 20: by Robert (last edited Jul 05, 2018 03:04PM) (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Rod - I actually admire you for being an all or nothing guy, I respect the rest of the viewpoints on this board for being necessary to support their brand of Christianity. However I know solid science and disparage silly science just as the Bible scholar tries to distinguish good theology from superstition. Unlike the rest of you, when the Bible conflicts with solid science, I choose solid science knowing it to be true. As I've said TOO MANY TIMES TO COUNT, I believe the Bibles' central tenets, both OT and NT. Stories on the periphery are often a result of the writer's fantasy. I wonder why Oddyseus, Jason and the Argonauts, the Minotaur, Helen of Troy and Romulus and Remus didn't worm their way into Scripture - would have livened it up considerably!

message 21: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
How do you then factually put your belief system over anyone else's? Your 37% Christianity to their 23% Buddhism? To someone's 3% Hinduism?

A God worthy of worship owes me a 100% belief system. Nothing else is worth living dying and standing for.

message 22: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Rod - I worship my God 100%. His belief system for me is pursuing the TRUTH no matter in which domain it lies. Why is your concept of God so rigid? Didn't the early Hebrews reason with him and get him to bend? The Father to me means celestial justice which means evaluating ALL, including Scripture, our worldly precepts.

message 23: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
It's because I can 100% know the God of the Bible. As He revealed himself to us, we know his methods and expectations, and limits.

If all we mostly know is allegory or metaphor or myth: then he can't hold me accountable, nor can I really pursue him. I might as well be a Buddhist. He won't mind.

message 24: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
The God of the Bible is incredibly rigid. That is specifically why Jesus lived and died. Not as a random mythical metaphor to maybe have our best life now.

If God is a judge: then the law must be incredibly clear in its entirety. You can't go to hell for confusing a myth or metaphor.

message 25: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Rod - well, so much for Grace.

message 26: by Chad (new)

Chad (chadjohnson) | 63 comments Robert, that is a cop out answer. What we're saying is that the whole Bible is either inspired by God or it isn't. Which is it? If believers get to pick and choose what is true in the Bible, then how is this different than other belief systems?

This business of what's true for you may not be true for me is utter hogwash. Truth is truth. And the Bible is the definitive source for truth.

message 27: by Robert (last edited Jul 10, 2018 03:34PM) (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Chad - c'mon Man! Anyone can claim anything is "the definitive source for truth" including other belief systems. You have nothing on them in the way of proof until Jesus' time. No traces of the Garden of Eden, no Noah's Ark, no ark of the covenant, nothing but a few written scrolls that could have been manufactured by anyone. With Jesus' ministry you have eyewitnesses who ALL witness basically the same thing. THERE'S your incipient Christianity. If you find it necessary to salivate over the entire Bible do so, but don't tell me my Salvation depends upon literal belief of ancient wisdoms intended for Hebrews. YOUR assertion is unbiblical according to Christ's teachings.

message 28: by David (new)

David Pulliam | 42 comments Three points might be helpful here: first, in the gospels it’s pretty clear that Jesus assumes the accuracy of the old testament. Therefore if you hold to the teachings of Jesus as found in the gospels then it seems natural to also hold to the Old Testament. I’m not sure how that is too much to ask.

Second, There’s not a lot of debate about the reliability of the Old Testament text. Not a lot of people argue that the old testament text was simply made up. The debate is more on issues like what is history versus literature, what is metaphor versus the literal. You can hold to the Old Testament and find yourself in different camps with different books.

Third, my guess is that the basis for rejecting the Old Testament is because dad comes across as a really mean person: genocide, animal sacrifice, the destruction of the entire world; and there is more. I think it might be helpful to take some time to compare this with the New Testament writings: prediction of the destruction of the world, human sacrifice and a calling for the destruction of people who are not of God. The two seem very similar.

message 29: by Chad (new)

Chad (chadjohnson) | 63 comments Robert wrote: "Chad - c'mon Man! Anyone can claim anything is "the definitive source for truth" including other belief systems. You have nothing on them in the way of proof until Jesus' time. No traces of the Gar..."


So now you want to debate whether or not Christianity is true just because other belief systems claim definitive source of truth as well? I didn't think that was what we were debating...

I also want to point out that I NEVER said nor asserted that salvation was dependent upon accepting what you call, "literal belief of ancient wisdoms intended for Hebrews."

In fact... if you look at this post [Jun 09, 2018 09:55PM] I in fact say, "you do not need to believe the entire Bible to be saved."

This debate seems to be quite pointless... what is the definition of insanity? Doing or saying the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result... well... I've said everything that needs to be said on this topic multiple times... and I do not believe there is a point anymore in saying them again.

message 30: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Chad - I noted what you said about salvation. Did you similarly note what Rod and I were discussing before you jumped in? It concerned how rigid the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob was. Rod asserts he is incredibly rigid, while I opined that if he sometimes changed his mind at the behest of Jewish prayers, he was less so. Furthermore, considering Rod's stance on rigidity, I ascertained that Rod felt grace a useless concept. Then, you felt obligated to change the entire tone of the discussion by elucidating your stance on grace. Now, I don't mind - this is the way the board works, but don't accuse me of unilaterally shifting subject matter when you're guilty of the same offense.

message 31: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
But Christ's teachings run through the entire Bible.

message 32: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments No Rod - Jesus really was just a baby born of woman. His influence didn't start until 33 years later. THEN, it changed the world.

message 33: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
I'm not convinced your Jesus is worth worshiping?! Is your heaven worth going to? How is Israel import?

message 34: by Cherie (new)

Cherie | 18 comments Ok, so Robert says Jesus was just a baby when he was born, so his influence didn't start till he was 33 years old (when he died).

What about when Jesus was 12, in the temple, teaching the Pharisees about His father?! That was influential!

What about when he was a baby and Simeon and Anna met him in the temple?

What about when the shepherds came and beheld the Messiah and went through all Bethlehem telling people Jesus had come and Herod heard about it and was SO SCARED he had EVERY SINGLE BABY BOY UNDER THE AGE OF THREE KILLED IN BETHLEHEM??!?!?!? That isn't influential to you?

Or do you mean influential, as in people were then able to be saved and go to heaven? Like, before Jesus, no one could go to heaven. But after Jesus died, people could.

Because that's wrong.

Even in Genesis it talks about Enoch, who walked with God and then "was not, for God took him". I think that means he went to heaven (which would mean people did go to heaven before Jesus was born). And Elijah was taken into heaven too right before Elisha's eyes, so that's two separate accounts right there.

message 35: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
Thanks Cherie. Glad you're here to chat. Robert gets sick of hearing my concerns. (Or am I growing on you buddy?)

message 36: by Cherie (new)

Cherie | 18 comments Lol no problem. Glad to chat xD

message 37: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Cherie - Lasting influence, not temporary titillation, like shark movies!

message 38: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Rod - I'm always interested in your thoughts. It is readily apparent that you devote much attention to the state of modern Christianity. I doubt, actually, if we're that far apart in our core beliefs. We disagree mostly on whether to give more credence to the behavioral aspects of the natural law (you) or the physically measureable ones (me).

message 39: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
Hmmm... I'll think on it.

message 40: by Cherie (new)

Cherie | 18 comments I went back and read further up- give me an example of the extraneous commentary that people believe literally. (Which I guess you think isn't true...? As in it didn't happen...?) cmon dude if you *are* a scientist you can't just throw around these vague terms, you gotta give me actual examples! (Verses? Verses would be nice)

message 41: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
God isn't bound by our natural law. Neither should any biblical account be necessarily. But God's expectations of us are.

message 42: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Rod - who said anything about God being bound? All I'm trying to understand are the forces governing the heavens and the earth he created.

message 43: by Robert (last edited Jul 20, 2018 03:22PM) (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments OK Cherie - Isaiah 65: 19: I will rejoice over Jerusalem and take delight in my people, the sound of weeping and of crying will be heard no more. 20: Never again will there be an infant who lives but a few days or an old man who does not live out his years; he who dies at a hundred will be thought a mere child; the one who fails to reach one hundred will be accursed.

message 44: by Cherie (new)

Cherie | 18 comments Are those verses of a certain chapter or the chapters 19 and 20 of Isaiah? Cause I couldn't find either of those passages in chapter 19 or 20. What part of those passages doesn't seem right/true/God's Word to you?

I will say that prophecies often appear as the truth wrapped in a metaphor wrapped in a story, and that can make them confusing. It doesn't bother me though, because humans loooove to use stories and metaphors, so it would make sense that the God we were made in the image of also likes those.

message 45: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
Isaiah 65
20 No more shall there be in it an infant who lives but a few days, or an old man who does not fill out his days, for the young man shall die a hundred years old, and the sinner a hundred years old shall be accursed.

Some people think this refers to the millennium age. Which makes perfect sense.

message 46: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
Robert you read God's Word and bound it to your current limitations. Think bigger buddy. Allow the story to follow its own rules. Holy Spirit rules, Jesus rules, a universe spoken into being rules.

message 47: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Rod - think bigger, huh? Maybe I should believe all science fiction, or dystopia, or liberal talking points? If you would have read any of my books, you would have found I have no problem with scope or original thinking. The trick, my friend, isn't expansion of ideas, it's discarding of the wayward ones in favor of the Truth. No lesser a luminary than Jesus said that so I'll stick with it.

message 48: by Robert (new)

Robert Core | 303 comments Cherie - thanks for making my point. The parts of the Bible not intended to be taken literally often have metaphorical and anecdotal value - at least for children. It's a little sad when supposedly sentient adults can't distinguish truth from fiction, but I suppose we all fool ourselves in some manner.

message 49: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
Think so big that it makes the historical parts of the Bible True. Even the parts you don't easily grasp.

message 50: by Rod (new)

Rod Horncastle | 469 comments Mod
Maybe we shouldn't take that Jesus part literally? To weird and miraculous. Defies science and secular history. Most say it's just bad storytelling- it would never hold up in court.

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