CHRISTIANS – An Atheist Is Seeking Answers. Can You Supply Any?

 CHRISTIANS – An Atheist Is Seeking Answers. Can You Supply Any?

To all who visit this page and attempt to offer an explanation: Thank You. In your comment please refer to which question you are addressing (#). If you wish, most of these questions can be found listed individually under the QUESTIONS FOR GOD AND HIS BELIEVERS category. Also, and this is important, please do not answer with ‘faith’ or by using scripture. Remember, I may have once been a die-hard Christian and may have studied the bible extensively in its many forms, but I am now an Atheist and the bible no longer holds any authority for me. I am merely trying to understand how people still believe the way I once did. How do you personally justify your beliefs, NOT how others justify them for you. If you visit my main page you can get a clearer understanding of where I’m coming from.

  • 1) Will the saved in heaven miss their skeptical friends and family who are doomed to eternal torment in hell? The bible says there will be no sorrow. Are you the same age in heaven as you were when you died? Child, old man? Or in your ‘prime’? Who decides? You? Will they have bodily functions? The bible mentions feasts in heaven? If you eat in heaven will the resulting bodily functions occur? Will they always be ‘pleasant’? Is there sex? How will we recognize each other if we don’t have a recognizable form? Will we have wrinkles? Gray hair? Be bald? Fat? Male or female (if no sex then why different sexes? Why genitals at all?)? Teeth (if no eating, no teeth)? Noses (nothing smells, no need)? Will lost appendages be restored? Infirmities erased? What about birth defects? Will a born cripple still be a cripple in heaven? If you’re beautiful in life will you be beautiful in heaven? The same with ugly? In other words, will anybody stand out? Will we all look alike? Same race? If not there will be certain discrimination in heaven as there always is with those that aren’t alike. Luke 22:29, 30“And I appoint unto you a kingdom … that ye may eat & drink at my table in my kingdom and sit on thrones judging the 12 tribes of Israel.”
  • 2) God is so zealous in his obsession that man be circumcised that one wonders why he created such a flawed body that requires such an operation in all of mankind in order to be worthy of God’s acceptance. And long before these operations were safe or sanitary. God tells Abraham to circumcise boys at age 8 days but Abraham himself wasn’t circumcised until he was 99 years old. Gen 17:24 Because Moses’ child with a Midianite woman isn’t circumcised, God loses it and nearly kills Moses. Moses is only saved because Moses’ wife chops off the child’s offending foreskin with a sharp stone, casting it at Moses’ feet. In order to purchase Saul’s daughter, Michal, for a wife, David kills 200 Philistines in order to obtain their foreskins to present as a gift to King Saul, and Saul only asked for 100. Why is this wee bit of skin so damn offensive? Could it be that it so closely resembles an ape’s (animal’s) penis and this reality frightens believers?
  • 3) It is a statistical fact that the more inteligent, highly educated a person, the less likely they are to belive in a god. In other words, the less educated, or more ignorant a person is, the more likely they are to believe in a god. If it was proven that the less educated, or more ignorant a person was the more likely they were to drive a Ford or wear Addidas sneakers, and you realized you drove a Ford or wore Addidas, wouldn’t you reconsider the car you drove or the sneaker you wore?
  • 4) So, say a married man dies (car crash or something) and goes to heaven. His wife remarries and lives a long happy life with her new wonderful husband. Many years later the wife dies but her second husband goes on to live quite a few years longer. When the wife arrives in heaven are the original married couple reunited in bliss? And what happens when the second husband dies and arrives in heaven? In heaven is one marriage more legitimate than the other? Is the first always more legitimate than any marriage that follows? What if the first was miserable (abusive spouse)? Or the second? Or the third? The answer seems to be that arrival in heaven results in an immediate divorce. In Mark 12:25 Jesus states that there will be no marriage in heaven. Husbands and wives will be no longer. So why the requirement for marriage in the first place if it’s just going to be voided upon death? Be fruitful and multiply was the command. God didn’t mention anything about first signing some unrealistic, legally-binding contract and having a silly ceremony. How can a person look forward to arriving in heaven if it means losing the love of their life?

  • 5) Why do so few of God’s creation (humanity) believe in him? Isn’t that a terrible failure on God’s part considering that all the non-believers are doomed to burn in eternal hellfire? Why has God allowed so many thousands of gods to be invented and worshiped by his creation? Why aren’t we all naturally inclined to know of and believe in our ‘creator’? How do Christians justify dismissing all gods mankind has invented over countless generations as fictitious and yet, lacking any evidence more legitimate than the worshipers of these other gods had, claim that their god is absolutely, undeniably genuine?
  • 6) None of the Gospels claim that more than a few besides the disciples saw Jesus after the resurrection, but in I Cor. 15:6 Paul claims there were 500. Where did this number come from? Why is Paul the only one to report a number anywhere that large? And if that number is accurate, few seemed to be impressed, for at the first meeting after Jesus’ ascension, only 120 people showed up (including the disciples and Jesus’ relatives) Acts 1:15. Why did Jesus’ time on earth, his miracles preformed, his resurrection and ascension into heaven impress so few people. The Jews were longing for the Messiah’s arrival and yet very few followed Jesus. Strange how only after a great many years have passed and the stories can no longer be proven/disproven, that so many now choose to believe. But still not the Jews! Why did God do so little to ensure that his chosen people (the Jews) accepted Jesus as the Messiah? Why did God bother to send Jesus down to earth, have him be born from a virgin, do all that he did, being the self proclaimed Messiah and savior King of the Jews, destined to die for them, be resurrected and rise into heaven, only to be rejected by God’s chosen people (the Jews)? What a waste. But then there is always Jews for Jesus.

  • 7) The writers of the bible clearly believed there was more than one god, more than one deity who could grant powers to those who followed/worshiped him just like the Christian god. If God is the only true/real God, then who granted the Pharaoh’s sorcerers the ability to match Moses’ magic with their own special ‘rods’? Ex. 7:11, 12, 22. If you try and suggest it was Satan, then please clarify; are you stating that Satan is a god? Are you saying the Pharaoh and all the others were Satan worshipers? Knowingly or through deception? Are you saying that the writers of the bible didn’t know it was Satan who was standing in for all of these deities? God didn’t think to let them in on this little fact? And, most importantly, what are you basing this opinion on?

  •  8 ) How is this not child abuse? It seems that in order for religion to really stick (last a lifetime) it must be introduced (indoctrinated) as a child. A child’s untried mind, peopled with fanciful characters as real as any (Santa Claus, Tooth Fairy, etc.) represents just the level of thought processes necessary for acceptance of a religious system so rooted in superstition and mythology. An adult tells the child of Santa Claus and the child believes, whole heartedly that he exists. If that child was protected and isolated from those that would tell him otherwise and surrounded by those that would continue to encourage his belief in Santa, would said child ever stop believing in Santa? How is this different than belief in God (Jesus)? If you believe that the parents who taught their naïve children that David Koresh was in fact the second coming of Christ were doing something wrong, how do you differentiate that from teaching a naïve child about your particular religion and god?

  • 9) Rev 17:8 “And they that dwell on the earth shall wonder, whose names were not written in the book of life from the foundation of the world.” Rev 20:15“And whosoever was not found written in the book of life was cast into the lake of fire.” Wow! What a Revelation! Where did this ‘book of life’ come from? Why did no one ever mention such an important book before Revelations? And if the names of those that will be allowed into heaven are written in it ‘from the foundation of the world’ then why, according to the bible, aren’t those that were born before Jesus allowed to have everlasting life?

  • 10)Why do non-Jews follow the Bible? Specifically the Old Testament? The bible is a book about the Jews, their history, customs, lifestyle, superstitions and religion. Gentiles (non Jews) should have no interest in it. Their treatment by Israelite armies at the direction of their God is so vindictive it should horrify any non Jew. Remember, Jesus called Gentiles (non Jews) “dogs“. Joseph Smith was so put off by how little the bible had to do with his people (Americans) that he actually rewrote it to suit him and started his own religion (Mormonism).

  • 11) What happened to thou shalt not kill? “If thy brother … or thy son, or thy daughter, or the wife of thy bosom, or thy friend which is as thine own soul, entice thee secretly, saying Let us go and serve other gods … Thou shalt surely kill him … and thou shalt stone him with stones that he die.” Deut 13:6, 9, 10. So if someone you love wants to be another religion and asks you to consider joining their religion, you should disobey the Ten Commandments, and righteously kill him, condemning their soul to eternal torment in hell? This is the command of a god you want me to worship and love and dedicate my life to? Really?

  • 12) How many children has your god doomed to burn in eternal hellfire? At what age are children judged to be responsible for making their own decisions about religion? They are born sinners according to the bible. If an atheist if guaranteed a place in hell, then how about that atheist’s 5 year old child? How about their 6 month old infant? Do they get a free pass? If so how about a ten year old? What is the cut off age? What about Mormons? According to Christianity, all Mormons are doomed to hell. What about their children? The children of a Mormon are being raised in their religion. They believe what their parents are teaching them (Santa!). They aren’t being given a choice. Will they be punished for innocently believing in their parents teachings by being sent to hell? Are the kids who died in the Waco, Texas compound fire with David Koresh in hell?

  • 13) What happens to people who have physical and mental infirmities that prevent them from hearing, or reading, or understanding? Is God a devil who would doom them to eternal hellfire OR is he a tender and merciful God who grants them free access into heaven? And what level of retardation is required to acquire this free pass? Is a person with downs syndrome exempt because they can conceivably make decisions for themselves? What about a person who was once ‘normal’ but as a result of a brain injury became mentally retarded? What if they were an Atheist before the accident? A Scientologist? A Serial Killer? Will they be judged for who they were before or after the accident?

  • 14) On the topic of free will; how does your god judge those who don’t have free will? Such as a person suffering from a mental disorder such as schizophrenia or bi-polar disorder? How about someone with a major dependency issue, such as an alcoholic or meth addict? How about someone with some sort of mental retardation? How about a child whose decisions are made for them?

  • 15) Are all who are naïve of Jesus’ existence (Amazonian Tribes) doomed to burn in eternal hellfire? If yes, then God is a devil and unworthy of worship by anyone who would call themselves good. HOWEVER, if God is indeed a merciful God, then those that are naïve of Jesus’ existence will not be punished for their innocent ignorance and will be granted entrance into heaven. If the later is the case, however, then wouldn’t the people of the world be better served by missionaries not coming to their lands? One minute the tribesman has a free pass to heaven from a good and merciful God, the next a missionary arrives and tells him to stop worshiping his god and worship Christ. The tribesman, not understanding, or not trusting this pale faced foreigner decides to continue worshiping as he and his people have for countless generations. The next day a jaguar attacks the tribesman and kills him. Fastpass to HELL for the tribesman. The very introduction of the missionary into their tribe dooms them. Thanks God! Thanks do-gooder Christians!

  • 16) How does God decide who he is going to have casual conversations with? In Gen. 25:23 Rebekah asks God about her pregnancy symptoms and God apparently isn’t busy so he replies, “Two manner of people shall be separated from thy bowels.” Another fine example is in Acts 10 – Peter is fasting on a rooftop and God decides Peter can be done fasting and sends down a sheet full of four-footed beasts and wild beasts and creeping things and foul and speaks to Peter, saying “Rise, kill and eat.” God the Almighty has just preformed a bit of magic and spoken directly with Peter, commanded him really, but does Peter obey his Lord? No, he refuses! Is God so unimpressive? God actually repeats his command three times but still Peter refuses. Finally, God gives up! Don’t these examples strike anyone as odd? And why are such pedestrian conversations unfathomable now? Even a Christian would think someone claiming to have such informal conversations with God is mad or a liar.

  • 17) During the God mandated wandering the Jews did before being allowed to enter the Promised Land, God provided manna, which was sweet and like coriander and could be made into cakes (using no other ingredients?). Just what sort of nutritional value could manna have had? What would happen to the human body if forced to eat nothing but manna for forty years? And if you answer with the typical pat, ‘God would make it so they wouldn’t get ill’, then you are required to answer the follow up question as well. If God is going to actively interfere with the bodies of these people, why not just make it so they don’t need to eat at all?

  • 18) How many people have died as a result of a single passage in the book of James? “And the prayer of faith shall heal the sick.” James 5:15

  • 19) Why do female televangelist clearly defy God’s commands about appearance? I Tim. 2:9“In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array…”

  • 20) What existed outside of the Garden of Eden? God created the Garden of Eden and inhabited it with all the creatures in existence (silly and mathematically impossible) and created a man to name and oversee everything and a woman to serve him. But what existed outside of the boundaries of the Garden? Was it a barren wasteland? Considering how many millions of years old the beautiful natural wonders of the Grand Canyon, Niagara Falls and Yosemite are, to name just a few local sites, it seems unlikely. When Adam and Eve were cast out of the Garden, what were they cast out into? And why were all the animals cast out of paradise as well? Why were they punished for man’s sins? In the Garden the Lion and the Lamb were bros., outside they were the predator and the prey, the eater and the eaten, the fed and the food. And how long would man and animal have needed to remain vegans outside of the Garden? Obviously many generations of animals would have needed to be born before they could be killed for their flesh (and coats), otherwise they would have quickly been rendered extinct. And were blood sacrifices really prudent at this point? And how did all these animals that are currently native only to a few very specific regions of the earth manage to get there? Would you argue that all the continents of the earth were one single land mass just a few thousand years ago? And finally, where the hell is the Garden of Eden now? Where did it go?

  • 21) If Public Schools require the teaching of creationism alongside evolution, would you require your Private Christian School or church to teach evolutionary science? If not, why not?

  • 22)Do Angels really have wings? Do they really need wings to fly? If not, then why do they have wings?
  • 23)Which came first; Dinosaurs or Adam and Eve?
  • 24)Do you believe in Jack and the Beanstalk as well? In Num. 13:33 the scouts for the Israelites advise against entering Canaan because they claim to have seen giants there. Giants appear a number of times in the bible, most notably in the tale of David and Goliath. David and his servants slay a number of other giants as well, including one with six fingers on each hand and six toes on each foot. Why is it in the most archeological excavated locations in the world (those mentioned in the bible), that no evidence of these giants have ever been found? Could it be because giants are creatures of Myth, just like Dragons, which are also repeatedly mentioned in the Bible as if they were real? Neither Dragons nor Giants exist. Never have.
  • 25)In Luke 24:37 when Jesus rises from the dead and appears to the eleven apostles, they are terrified. Didn’t they know he would be returning? How little faith did they have in their own Messiah? Why so little preparation for his return? Most of Jesus’ followers just went back to life as normal or went into hiding. Lazarus’ return from the dead was met with more enthusiasm. Why do the disciples have such an insignificant reaction to Jesus’ resurrection and ascension? They seem relatively unimpressed by these incredible feats. They don’t tell anyone and aren’t tempted to tell anyone. Nobody gloats to the scribes and Pharisees. Nobody tells Jesus’ mother (!). Nobody celebrates. Nobody says, “I told you so!” They don’t assemble a crowd for the ascension. And if they really believe what Jesus said about his second coming is true and that it will happen in their lifetimes, why weren’t they hotfooting it to try and ‘save’ as many Jews from hell as they can? Don’t they have any friends, family or loved ones they would like to see get into heaven?
  • 26)Can God make a rock so heavy he can’t lift it?
  • 27) Every religion–Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Mormonism, Scientology, Buddhism, etc. claims to have religious experiences. If EVERY supernatural belief system boasts religious experiences, then doesn’t that pretty well devalue religious experiences as an indicator of actual truth?
  • 28)Why won’t any religious person pray that an amputee’s limb grows back? Is it because you know that it is impossible and praying for the impossible is foolish? Why can’t an all powerful god heal an amputee? Why don’t parents who wanted a baby boy but got a baby girl pray for the baby to change genders? Why do Christians so rarely pray for anything that is completely impossible?
  • 29)A simple scientific test for the validity of prayer. Gather up the religeous leaders of your particular religion and put them and 200 of their most loyal and feverent followers on an airplane. At 35,000 feet, the pilot and co-pilot will exit the plane via parachute. Autopilot can not be used. At this point every person remaining on board will begin to pray for the plane’s safe landing and every passenger’s survival. If God’s hands guide the aircraft to a safe and smooth landing, prayer’s efficacy will be proven. If the plane crashes, the power of prayer will have been disproven. Would even one of these believers step foot on that plane to participate in this test? Any volunteers?
  • 30) Aren’t you an Atheist almost exactly like me? Do you believe in Baal? Do you believe in Ammon Ra? How about Zeus? Or Wotan? Or Poseidon? Or Apollo? Guess what? Me neither! If I made a list of every god ever worshiped by man I bet you would check them all off as being false just like me. The only difference between you and I seems to be the one god you would leave unchecked that I would include with the others. Not much of a difference between us after all is there? You exclude your god from your atheistic beliefs whereas I include him. That’s all.

  • 31) Should the church be able to prevent someone from donating a kidney to their dying sister? Does the kidney belong to the person whoes body it resides in? Is it theirs to do with as they please? How about a tumor? A tumor is a living, growing mass of cells. A tumor doesn’t necessarily cause any harm to the human whoes body it is growing in. Does a person have the right to have it removed, even if it’s not currently causing them harm? What about if it might kill them to do so? Does the tumor belong to them? How is a fetus (a living, growing mass of cells) any different? Because it is human? Fine, then is the fetus capable of making the decision? No? Then who should the decision logically fall to? How can it be anyone other than the person whoes body the fetus/tumor/kidney resides in?

  • 32)If an ancient Aztec text was discovered and in this text it was reported that their leader commanded an offensive tree to uproot itself and march away into the jungle, would you believe that this actually occurred? If not, why not? There is no evidence that the events depicted in the Bible actually occurred, in fact quite the contrary, so why would you blindly believe those stories but not the one depicted in the Aztec text?

  • 33)If a Christian does not spend every waking moment of their lives trying to ‘save’ people in order for those people to go to heaven when they die, can they truly call themselves a real Christian? How can a real Christian just sit idley by knowing that, according to the Bible, of the thousands of people who die every day, the majority of them are going straight to hell?

  • 34)Why isn’t knowledge of God a natural part of our existence? Why aren’t we born knowing him? In other words, why if a man is born and left alone, and he never encounters a Christian or reads a bible, he would live his whole life never knowing or believing in God? If God is real and deserving of our love, why has he stacked the deck so highly in favor of mankind eventually finding themselves in hell rather than heaven?

  • 35)Did Adam and Eve have sex in the Garden of Eden? If so, did they do it purely for procreation purposes? Who taught them how to have intercourse? God?

  • 36)Did pain exist before Eve ate from the Tree of Knowledge? If so, why? If part of the punishment for eating the fruit was pain during childbirth, does this mean pain receptors didn’t exist in the female body before this? How else would childbirth have been free from pain?
  • 37) If God intended for his religion to be (embraced) for all (not just the Jews) why did he make it so restrictive and exclusive? Invading, attacking, and slaughtering all who weren’t his chosen people hardly seems like an invitation.
  • 38)
Advertisements

71 Responses to “CHRISTIANS – An Atheist Is Seeking Answers. Can You Supply Any?”

  1. doubtingthomas426,

    Wow, that’s quite an impressive list. Its a bit late for me tonight to tackle the whole thing but I wanted to let you know that I’m gonna give you a little help on your quest for answers. I mean, you do want answers right? I’m a little concerned that you tilt the field a bit when you ask me to leave my Bible behind since it is the lens that this former atheist uses to interpret reality. I guess I’ll pick…8 yeah, the one with the smiley face, 8.

    1. Santa is quite universally agreed upon as a fable to persons of a certain age. This majority appears to function in their lives as rational beings in areas besides the Santa question. One can extrapolate therefore that these folks might have a clue about Santa (Santa – Satan, Hmm). Santa can therefore be reasonably disproved. David Koresh (is that the spelling?) was clearly a mad-man based upon the rational person standard delineated above and his demise and resultant carnage proved him unworthy of worship.

    Now, with regards to my God. Hmm, you’ve banned the Bible – like so many of your compadres:) – so I can’t use that…Hey wait, I was raised a secularist and then converted to Christianity- was that child abuse? I mean we’ve not really finished the great debate about our opposing worldviews so neither of us can claim the upper hand of truth because we can’t be certain. Hmm it would seem by the standard implied by your question, all transmission of knowledge (if there can be knowledge at all) would be abuse. If something can not be completely proven in all cases (regardless of the impact of the belief in said thing) then it can not be taught without becoming abuse. If you don’t know it perfectly – Don’t teach it. Right? But who can know all things except God?

    Your questions seem to beg a certain morality – a person such as yourself has certainly considered the issue of defining morality without a lawgiver – How do you do it? Is it by your determination, majority, or by power based fiat? I’d love to keep up this discussion.

    Feel free to drop by my blog as well: http://www.offensivechristians.com/blog

    If you seriously want answers and really want to exchange ideas, I’d love to have you over on my site – Your the first Atheist I’ve invited over. Oh yeah, if anybody else wants to come over you’re welcome as well. I do need to mention that I won’t tolerate attacks aimed a people vice their ideas and neither will I approve posts with language I deem offensive. Not the ideas – just the language.

    May God bless you:)

    OC

  2. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Offensive Christian, thank you for stopping by and thank you for your comment.

    [[Offensive Christian said –– “…you do want answers right? I’m a little concerned that you tilt the field a bit when you ask me to leave my Bible behind since it is the lens that this former atheist uses to interpret reality… you’ve banned the Bible – like so many of your compadres:) – so I can’t use that.” ]]

    Offensive Christian (I’ll address you as OC from here on out), yes, I DO want answers. I’m sorry if you feel I am ‘tilting the field’ by requiring people not use scripture for their answers but I grow weary of having Christians simply regurgitate some carefully chosen biblical passage in response to my questions/comments instead of taking the time to actually consider them. However, if you, or anyone else who would like to comment, find themselves unable to come up with any type of considered explanation and your ONLY answer for thinking the way you do is “because the bible tells me so” AKA faith, feel free to leave those as your answer. Christians just need to understand that quoting scripture or repeating some bit of comforting religious dogma does ABSOLUTELY NOTHING to help an Atheist understand the why and how of your position. ALL we see is the subtitle reading “because the bible tells me so”. And to clarify, I did not ‘ban’ the bible from being used. That was your translation.
    Regarding my question (#8) above, OC responded – “Santa is quite universally agreed upon as a fable to persons of a certain age. This majority appears to function in their lives as rational beings in areas besides the Santa question. One can extrapolate therefore that these folks might have a clue about Santa (Santa – Satan, Hmm). Santa can therefore be reasonably disproved. David Koresh (is that the spelling?) was clearly a mad-man based upon the rational person standard delineated above and his demise and resultant carnage proved him unworthy of worship.”

    The point, OC, was that if a child who believes in Santa Claus is ISOLATED from those ‘rational beings’ who would tell him/her that he is not real and is never allowed access to any evidence that Santa Claus is a mythical being, regardless of what age they reach, they will continue to believe in this being, especially if they are surrounded by those who continue to support this belief by supplying ‘evidence’ of his reality (i.e. presents at Christmas, cookies and milk disappearing, personal appearances, letter writing, movies/stories told of his magical feats, etc). Yes, Santa CAN be reasonably disproved, but, OC, I could say the same for Baal, Zeus, Ra, and, yes, Jesus. As for your cavalier dismissal of my David Koresh analogy, I should remind you that Jesus was regarded by many as a ‘mad-man’ and it could be argued that the manner of ‘his demise and resultant carnage’ could prove ‘him unworthy of worship’ as well (and, in fact, is by the Jews). And to clarify, my referencing David Koresh and the Branch Davidians (truthfully, they no longer called themselves this) was to encourage the person reading question # 8 to confront themselves with the ugly truth that religious indoctrination in children, whether it be by the parents of those 21 children that died that day in Waco, Texas, or parents following the Mormon religion, the teachings of L. Ron Hubbard, or the Christian Bible, is inarguably unfair and possibly unethical. You are teaching a child a theory as an absolute. Once myth has been established as fact in a child’s mind it is EXTREMELY difficult, even as an adult, for that person to shake this belief. I find it unethical for ANYONE to teach a child that what you hope and pray to be true is in fact undeniably, unquestionably true. So question # 8 is simply; Why Don’t You Agree?

    Teach a child what you BELIEVE to be true but also teach them that there are hundreds and hundreds of millions of other people who believe in something entirely different and that it is up to them to come to their own conclusions.

    [[OC said the following – “it would seem by the standard implied by your question, all transmission of knowledge (if there can be knowledge at all) would be abuse. If something can not be completely proven in all cases (regardless of the impact of the belief in said thing) then it can not be taught without becoming abuse. If you don’t know it perfectly – Don’t teach it. Right? But who can know all things except God?”]]

    OC, transmission of knowledge is not abusive, transmission of FAITH as FACT could be considered abuse. Teach your child absolutes as absolutes, theories as theories, faith as faith, science as science, hypotheses as hypotheses, etc. And no one can know all things, OC, not even Zeus, or Ra, or Allah, or whatever god whomever is reading this believes to be the ONE god out of the thousands mankind has invented to be the real and genuine article.

    And, OC, morality is just a word religious people came up with to define mankind’s ability to reason. There is no religion in the world that OWNS morality. A Christian is no more capable of living a perfectly ‘moral’ life than a Mormon, a Hindu, a Scientologist or an Atheist. Our judgment of what is right and what is wrong is ALWAYS a personal one. Is it morally just to stone your rebellious son to death as the bible commands? Every Christian parent will decide that for themselves. The bible depicts a man being stoned to death for picking up a stick on the Sabbath (Num 15:35, 36). Should you work on the God ordained day of rest? I could gather a hundred different people who call themselves Christians and have them judge something on whether it was moral or not and receive a hundred different reasons for why or why not. God has nothing to do with it, OC, because for ALL of us, God is just a concept. You may base every decision in your life on that concept but that doesn’t change the fact that they are all, every last one of them, YOUR decisions.

    Thank you for the invitation to your site, OC. I will definitely check it out when I get the chance. And don’t worry, I never attack people for their differing beliefs so if I feel inspired to leave a comment, I assure you the only people I will offend are those offended by opinions that differ from their own.

    Take Care and please return with any more comments (either here or on one of my many other posts) if/when you feel the urge to do so.

    DoubtingThomas

  3. offensivechristian Says:

    Doubting Thomas,

    I’ve got to run very soon but let me give this a shot. It is your a priori adherence to the idea that you and I and who ever else believes they are formulating a thought are also the most qualified to characterize that thought as faith, science, theory, hypothesis, etc. that concerns me. When we are discussing epistemology and the basis of knowledge itself then we must admit that we are embroiled in the very thing we are trying to define. It seems to me that without absolute knowledge our categories of types of information are rather arbitrary and subject to error or revision based on further data of which we might not have access.

    So…it would seem that the transmission of potentially incorrect inculcative informaion could be construed as childe abuse by your standard.

    I haven’t even had coffee yet this am so I hope its not too off the mark in explaining what I’m thinking. A rather ironic state of affairs considering the nature of my point, don’t you think?

    Thanks for posting the link back here so I’d come back and respond and thanks for dropping by my site…Ill try to give you a new take on your other questions and I understand if you don’t hold your breath. You’ve been quite rational and even kind in your posts – thanks

    OC
    http://www.offensivechristians.com/blog

  4. – Will the saved in heaven miss their skeptical friends and family who are doomed to eternal torment in hell? The bible says there will be no sorrow.

    No, I don’t think so. Those who die in unbelief will not be tormented forever, but they will be dead forever. Will there be sorrow over that fact? Maybe initially, but not eternally. Once it’s done it’s done, and we move on in life in eternity with God. What God does is right, and though we may not understand it now, we will when Jesus Christ returns in glory.

    – But God Are you the same age in heaven as you were when you died? Child, old man? Or in your ‘prime’? Who decides? You? Will they have bodily functions? The bible mentions feasts in heaven? If you eat in heaven will the resulting bodily functions occur? Will they always be ‘pleasant’? Is there sex? How will we recognize each other if we don’t have a recognizable form? Will we have wrinkles? Gray hair? Be bald? Fat? Male or female (if no sex then why different sexes? Why genitals at all?)? Teeth (if no eating, no teeth)? Noses (nothing smells, no need)? Will lost appendages be restored? Infirmities erased? What about birth defects? Will a born cripple still be a cripple in heaven? If you’re beautiful in life will you be beautiful in heaven? The same with ugly? In other words, will anybody stand out? Will we all look alike? Same race? If not there will be certain discrimination in heaven as there always is with those that aren’t alike. Luke 22:29, 30 – “And I appoint unto you a kingdom … that ye may eat & drink at my table in my kingdom and sit on thrones judging the 12 tribes of Israel.”

    I believe God makes everyone with their own distinct qualities; that’s why were are each given our own name in heaven. We are God’s creation, and He created each of us with unique characteristics. To answer what our bodies will be like in heaven, I think the best answer is to see what Jesus was like in His ressurrected body. He could eat and drink, be recognized or unrecognized, walk through walls, disappear. I think we will have freedom similar to that. Will there be sex? Maybe. There might be no marriage, but it doesn’t say anything about sex. And by the way, our inheritance is earth, not heaven as we think of it. Jesus Christ will be here with us on earth, and in that sense, because we are with him, we will also be in heaven. However, the Bible is pretty obscure about our eternal state, but there are clues.

  5. On questions 12, 13 and 14 you ask about what happens to children who are too young to make their own decisions about religion. You also asked about adults without the mental aptitude to make those same decisions. I’ve been Protestant all my life, and though it’s not specifically mentioned in the Bible, many believe in an “age of accountability” , the point at which a person knows good from evil, as Adam and Eve did when they took the forbidden fruit. Some people put the age at around 12 or 13 because that’s the time when Jesus taught in the temple. (Also the age of mitzvahs). But I (and others I know) tend to believe that the age of accountability is flexible. Meaning that different people may come to that knowledge at different ages and some people, due to mental defect may grow old and still NEVER reach an age where they can make those decisions for themselves. I do not believe such persons would be “damned to hell” as it were

  6. 18) How many people have died as a result of a single passage in the book of James? “And the prayer of faith shall heal the sick.” James 5:15

    How many have died because of that? I don’t know. I wonder if you’re thinking about the mother of James Hetfield when you ask that? Most Christians I know don’t rule out a doctor’s help but rely on prayer AND medicine. So let me turn the question around. How many hospitals have been built by the Catholic Church? What about the Baptists? Methodists? Ever heard of Jewish hospitals? I know a couple. If religious people don’t believe in medicine, why do they call it Red Cross? I go to church with an M. D., a hospital administrator, a physicians assistant, and a Christian friend of mine is a nurse. I’m an EMT. And oh, St. Luke was a physician

  7. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Mike, thanks for stopping by and putting in your two cents. I truly appreciate it. However, I should warn you, the issues you chose to address are a few of the ones that trouble me the most. I’m referring to the issue of accountability in children, the mentally retarded, the mentally ill, and brain damaged people and whether or not they go to hell or are given a ‘free pass’ into heaven based on their perceived innocence. The age you offer is just as arbitrary as all the others I have received and seems entirely based on personal opinion. Apparently on this subject there is absolutely no chance of receiving a definitive answer. You might want to check out another thread to gain an idea of the answers regarding this issue I have been dealing with. Ignore the original post statement and instead read the comments (both from others and myself). I know there are a lot but it will really help to reveal why I have such a strong opinion on this particular subject.

    https://doubtingthomas426.wordpress.com/2007/12/16/if-the-statement-is-true-your-religion-is-vile/

    And, Mike, I found it interesting that you said — “But I (and others I know) tend to believe that the age of accountability is flexible. Meaning that different people may come to that knowledge at different ages and some people, due to mental defect may grow old and still NEVER reach an age where they can make those decisions for themselves. I do not believe such persons would be “damned to hell” as it were.” – I was curious if you understood that you were arguing for Adam and Eve’s innocence when you offered this opinion. It could be argued that there has never been two more innocent people. In fact, I can’t imagine two people who were more childlike than Adam and Eve. So why weren’t they treated accordingly? Consider this analogy: A little seven year old girl is lost in the woods. A man in a police officer’s uniform finds her there and says to her, “Come with me, little girl, come and I will take you to safety. Come and I will take you back to your parents.” The little girl’s parents told her time and time again never to talk to strangers and absolutely never to go anywhere with a stranger but this man is a police officer and seems so nice. He promises to take her to safety, to her parents. The little girl is naïve and doesn’t know any better. She innocently disobeys her parents and goes with the man. Six months later she is rescued from the pedophile’s dungeon by the REAL police and finally returned to her parents. Damaged but alive. Her parents immediately punish her for going with the man by spanking her, taking away her toys, grounding her, forbidding her from seeing her friends, no Dora the Explorer, no dessert, no cartoons, no going to the park, no going outside, and they decide to spank her whenever she (pick anything that never used to result in pain). So, are the little girl’s parents monsters? Of course they are. Can you really tell me Eve was any less naïve and gullible than the little girl in this example? If God is a merciful and forgiving god why didn’t he forgive Eve for, what is arguably, the most innocent ‘sin’ in the bible instead of dooming mankind to all that has followed?

    And regarding the James 5:15 passage, I was, of course, referring to Christian Science and Jehovah’s Witnesses.

    DoubtingThomas

  8. MAZZQuestions Says:

    In regards to questions 12 and 13, one of the questions I’ve been asking myself since I started questioning religion years ago was this: Jesus said that no one gets to heaven except by him, what happens to everyone that has never heard of Jesus? Im sure many other atheists and probably agnostics have asked themselves the same question but I’m not sure many theists have. This is one of the questions that had the biggest impact on my refusal of christianity.

    When jesus said this, presumably he was speaking to at most a couple hundred people, so what about everyone that died 5 minutes later in the rest of the world? Or even in the rest of the city. Quite possibly someone died the moment jesus stopped speaking, did that person go to hell for not believing in jesus? Even today there are people that have never heard of jesus or christianity. Does god punish people who has never heard of his son? And if the answer is no, why not? Doesnt that prove that no one has to believe in jesus to go to heaven?

    I believe if Christians actually pondered these questions here they would understand the absolute impossibility of the basis of their religion and it would absolutely crumble.

  9. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    I’m right there with you, MAZZ. You really should read the comments on this post as more than a few address this issue. Also, you might want to check out another of my posts to gain an idea of the answers regarding this issue I have been dealing with. Ignore the original post statement and instead read the comments (both from others and myself). I know there are a lot but it will really help to reveal why I have such a strong opinion on this particular subject.

    https://doubtingthomas426.wordpress.com/2007/12/16/if-the-statement-is-true-your-religion-is-vile/

    DoubtingThomas

  10. Brilliant! Brilliant, funny, sad and all too true.
    Perhaps…..just perhaps–there is a middle ground?
    Including your blog on my blogroll. Keep writing!
    Blessings,
    Rev Jesse

  11. after reading through these posts i really wish i could answer your all of your questions… but alas i can’t. i am a christian but not because i know the answer to all of my (and your) questions… and there are a lot of your questions that i would love to know the answers to… but i am a christian not because of what i know with my head but what i know through experience. i used to live a life that most people by today’s standards would say was exciting, fun, glamorous, rich, and full but it was a miserable empty existance constantly searching for the next high in one way or another. then when i got pregnant with my first child something in me longed for so much more for that child. i would say that God seeked me out, i can’t explain that or even prove that but i have no other explanation for this desire in me to know my Creator. i began to seek Him and the more i knew about Jesus and God the more satisfied and fulfilled i became. slowly that old life seemed to fall away like a shell i had been trapped in and i was transformed into the person that i am today…that is statement is way oversimplified. i can say that life is not easier but without more concrete explanation i can say that i am more complete… like a void in me has been filled that gives me hope of an eternal existance. perhaps this makes me naive but you couldn’t pay me enough to go back to a life without God, and essentially that is what i believe hell is. in what context that exists i don’t know, that is to say i don’t know if you physically burn or are tortured but i do know that it is an existance without God and that is all i need to know. i’m sorry that you need to know all of the answers to these questions in order to be satisfied that God does exist and i’d be curious to know about the events that precluded your fall away from Him… might i suggest reading any of the books by Lee Strobel (“A Case for Faith,” “A Case for a Creator,” and “A Case for Christ”) to help fill in the blanks of your questions. maybe you already have read thoe books, it seems to me that you are honestly seeking answers… i can promise you though that all of our questions will be answered someday (either with a greeting from God or a final end,) it’s just a matter of when… if that gives you any satisfaction at all. i can honestly say that i am eagerly awaiting the day when all of my questions are answered, either the day that i die or the day of Christs return whichever comes first. I do know that the Bible says that every single person on earth is God’s creation and that He longs for every one of them to know Him and that it breaks His heart that not everyone will… it will break His heart if you don’t know Him but that is entirely up to you. thanks for your time in reading this, for whatever it is worth i am making it a priority to pray that God answers your questions in whatever way possible, and to pray for all of His lost children.
    —jenn

  12. Apologies for the tangent, but another question for the Christians:

    How does one explain the mechanism for ‘miracles’?

    I find the biggest ‘miracle’ leap to be the resurrection.

    It’s always struck me as pure unsubstantiated myth despite all the people he is purported to have appeared to…

    I would also be interested in hearing DT’s take on miracles and the resurrection – perhaps a future post?

    Many thanks,
    Jeff.

  13. Thomas, I love your mind and your blog. Don’t agree with your POV, but I love your willingness to both ask the hard questions and seriously entertain the remarks made on them. Jesus would have been proud to have you as a colleague! Paul would have bitch-slapped you to hell and gone, but he may well have been the first antichrist and the worst thing that happened to Christianity while being the greatest thing that ever happened to the Holy Roman Empire. God forgive me if it’s blasphemy. I’m certain he does.
    Here’s a question for you: if God is so vast and mighty and eternal and such, what does he care about what we do with what’s between our legs at all? We would compare to him about as much as a quark compares to us. I seriously wonder why He would be all bent about what happens to any of us. All of us, perhaps. And what we do *to* each other and all . . .
    Anyway, I’m going to take the weekend to drink a case of wine (as a sacrament, of course) and ponder these questions. I intend to answer as many as I can; my goal be each and every. Because I too am curious. Convicted irrevocably of God’s existence (if not identity), and totally intrigued by His nature. (For the sake of those watching I would like to point out that I use the personal pronouns normally marked as male merely because I have a penis and have no better alternative of personal pronouns; which is to say that I believe God transcends sex and/or gender.)

  14. DT: Very interesting points about Adam and Eve. I’m going to go meditate on that for awhile. Something seems quite inconsistent there. It makes sense to me that they lost the privilege of the Garden for transgressing, simply as a matter of consequence and to teach them a lesson. On the other hand, the cursing of the ground and all that seems overblown and a tyrannical punishment for disobedience. But then, they hid from God and then were not forthcoming. They also displaced blame in full knowledge of their transgression, once they became conscious of it because of the stolen fruit.
    I always did think the God of the OT was a bit of a tyrant, but I think that came out especially spun by earlier and poor translations influenced by monarchies and oligarchies. God comes off as a bit of a spoiled child there in my opinion. Sort of “I’m going to take my ball and go home” foot stomping now and then. Especially at the Garden and with Moses.
    Thanks for the puzzle!
    Fringemonkey

  15. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Jenn,

    Thank you for your comment. Your story is a surprisingly common one. I’m sure people are doing studies (or should be) on the regular occurrence of women getting pregnant and suddenly ‘finding God’ or returning to their faith. Oddly, the god they find or religion they return to is ALWAYS one associated to the one in which those who raised them belonged or one they were most familiar with. These women NEVER, EVER have an unfamiliar god enter their lives. Why is it a woman who was raised around the Christian religion and the Christian bible is NEVER found by Ganesa (Hindu god)? I wonder how many women in Iran, upon getting pregnant find themselves being visited by Buddha? Not very many I’d imagine. Strange that. But clearly getting pregnant is a major change in a woman’s life. Aside from the chemical, emotional and bodily changes that occur, certainly a woman’s perspective on life is likely to change. And I find it interesting that you were leading a life that was “exciting, fun, glamorous, rich, and FULL” and yet it was a miserable, EMPTY existence. This reeks of ‘born again syndrome’, AKA a person ‘finds God’ and suddenly the previous FULL life is revised and classified as EMPTY. You seem to have allowed yourself to be brainwashed into believing that those who don’t worship a god can’t live a rich, fulfilling, satisfying and happy life. Considering that the vast majority of the human population worships differently than you do, Jenn, clearly one’s happiness isn’t reliant on worshiping the ‘right’ god or any god for that matter. And to clarify, I don’t need ALL the answers to these questions to believe that YOUR god exists. All I need is evidence. Just a little bit of undeniable evidence that a god (any god, I’m not prejudice) actually exists and I would be a believer. But opinion, superstition and personal testimony seems to be all that I ever receive. So I keep searching and asking the hard questions. Also, there were no major, dramatic, or pointed ‘events’ that I could cite as examples of causes for my loss of faith. It was a fairly gradual evolution that resulted from an open minded studying of the bible, Christianity, global history, and world religion. I simply lost my ability to devote myself to the HOPE that a thing was true. I needed more. But if God truly longs for everyone to know him and is heartbroken when those of us who don’t, end up in hell, it seems to me that it would take very little effort on his part to assure that he didn’t lose a single one. Remember, Jenn, more people BELIEVE in a god, just not the ‘right’ god (namely yours), than don’t believe. Many believe in the same god as you do but don’t worship him in the ‘right’ way. It just makes me sad, this concept of an all powerful god who would punish all of these people when he could have easily saved them all instead.

    DoubtingThomas

  16. DoubtingThomas,

    I’ve addressed one of your lists before.

    So you’ll forgive me when I quote: But avoid foolish questions, and geneologies, and contentions, and strivings about the Law, for they are unprofitable and worthless.” Titus 3:9

    What Paul was saying is, you’ve just proposed a complete and total waste of everyone’s time. Why not ask how many angels can dance on the head of a pin? This is, hands down, the dumbest list you’ve come up with, which is why I’ve never addressed it. Nor will I.

    You’re capable of intelligent questions. Let’s hear those instead.

    I suupose the worst part of it is, you don’t actually give a crap who answers. As most of your questions are rediculous, I’m sure most of the answers have been equally rediculous — and entertaining!

    Or are you actually professing that THESE trivial pursuits are the burning questions upon your heart, the very things that your sould yearns to know?

    be honest,
    Sirius Knott

  17. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Sirius,

    If someone were to insist that a hundred thousand angels could dance on the head of a pin I would probably be inclined to ask how they knew that to be true. Why asking this or any other question is judged as being foolish or a waste of time is beyond me. I used to believe as you do, Sirius, and just as passionately. It was the questions and observations cataloged on this site (these being just a few) that resulted in my no longer being able to take things on faith alone. The questions on this particular post are just a few I found to be the most provocative or philosophically relevant (more are coming). I’m sorry if you find them too ridiculous to ‘waste time’ offering your opinion/answer. But I am honestly seeking to understand how people continue to believe the way they do, especially when confronted with the same questions that resulted in my own loss of faith. I don’t think it is a waste of time or ridiculous or trivial for one to seek to understand how or why another believes the way they do. If a follower of David Koresh were to have taken a step back in order to question the validity of their self proclaimed leaders assertions would you have called their questions ridiculous, a waste of time and trivial? What about a member of the People’s Temple (Jim Jones)? What about a member of Heaven’s Gate? What about a Hindu? A Mormon? A Scientologist? Who should be encouraged to question that which they are taught to accept on faith alone? Everyone except those belonging to your particular sect of Christianity? And who should be the one to judge what questions are too foolish to be allowed? You, Sirius? Should only MENSA members be allowed to ask questions? Should someone with Down Syndrome be excluded? I don’t understand how people can believe that the origins of life are perfectly explained by the theory of evolution. I don’t understand how people can believe in something as asinine as Astrology. I don’t understand how people can believe in something as absurd as Psychic abilities. I don’t understand how people can believe in something as ridiculous as Ghosts. Strange, but I get a strong feeling that you don’t mind my seeking answers regarding those people’s beliefs. If I were to create a site addressing any of those topics would you feel inclined to drag your towering podium over there as well? I’m just trying to understand our world and all the odd and interesting people who share it with me. It’s a very difficult endeavor. But it would be an impossible one if I were forbidden from asking questions. And I don’t see how someone can read the bible, compare it to reality or simply observe the religious, and not be filled with questions. I’m not sure why this is worthy of ridicule.

    Always Honest,

    DoubtingThomas

  18. Thomas,

    If you were a Bible scholar as you claim, you would know full well the difference between a vain question and an honest one.

    Since I have my doubts as to the veracity of this particular claim, allow me give a brief definition: A vain question is a question of trivia or intentional mockery. It deals with questions that no one, including the questioner, truly cares about.

    If someone were to insist that there were angels of any number dancing upon the heal of a pin, I’d ask him if he enjoyed wasting my time. I would not ask him how he knew it to be true. I would ask him first why I should care. Trivial pursuits. If these are really the burning questions that honestly keep you from Christendom, then you are only admitting that you are only dissenting on the weakest of all possible props.

    I daresay you’re misleading these good folk. I’ve come to the conclusion that this trivia you hedge yourself about with is no more than a red herring. You have real objections, but you don’t want THOSE answered because you do not want to change your mind.

    You may ask any question you like, Thomas, but you must accept the consequences if you insult our intelligence.

    And don’t act so wounded, friend. I’m giving you entirely too much credit as it is. My towering podium would not be necessary if you would condescend to tell us why you’ve truly rejected Christendom.

    again, be honest,
    Sirius Knott

  19. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Sirius,

    You accuse me of not understanding the difference between an Honest question and a Vain one, then you proceed to offer your definition as follows – “A vain question is a question of trivia or intentional mockery. It deals with questions that no one, including the questioner, truly cares about.”

    A simple cursory review of the other commentators on this very post reveals that, by your very definition, my questions are clearly not vain ones. And I never claimed to be a biblical scholar, merely one who has studied the bible.

    You state – “If someone were to insist that there were angels of any number dancing upon the heal of a pin, I’d ask him if he enjoyed wasting my time. I would not ask him how he knew it to be true. I would ask him first why I should care.”

    Someone makes an outrageous claim, a claim they passionately believe to be true, a claim you can’t even IMAGINE to be true and you have absolutely no interest in learning the hows or the whys? Are you really so lacking in curiosity? You seem to believe that you already know all there is to know, at least about what you believe to be important. Is there anything you are curious about? Anything you wish you knew more about? Anything you wish you knew for a certainty?

    And to clarify, no ONE of the questions or observations I’ve cataloged on this site is the reason I no longer believe. All of them, collectively, are the reason. And not only do I not believe in a god (yours or anyone else’s) but I don’t see the necessity for a god (yours or anyone else’s).

    And who is this ‘our’ whose intelligence I have insulted with my ‘ridiculous’ questions.

    Honest, as always,

    DoubtingThomas

  20. I thought it a foregone conclusion that 144,000 angels can dance on the point of a needle. They’re helping the fat man get through the narrow gate.
    As a former zealot, I’d like to say that I entertain these questions as serious questions and very interesting puzzles. For me, unquestioned faith is unexamined and untested and therefore dead. If God, then He endowed us with this wonderful gift of mind and intellect and curiosity and the biological urge to explore and discover, etc.
    Also, I’ve seen plenty of evidence throughout this blog to convince me that Thomas has a far better than average knowledge of the Bible (as text – saying nothing of his understanding either way, as I haven’t proof of either and consider him a sort of clandestine friend with the savvy and hutzpa to show me a mirror now and then). If such questions are offensive or dangerous to anyone’s faith, then I would advise such a person to get off the Web and go back to the Bible or into their garden for a serious prayer intensive. I seem to recall a scripture that admonishes Christians to live ‘not by blind faith,’ but in the knowledge of the one in whom they believe.
    Meanwhile, Thomas, some of your questions above are made irrelevant by their coming from the Old Dispensation. They were crucified with Christ on the cross and no longer apply to “The Faithful”. And I’m still working like a fiend on that Adam and Eve puzzle. It’s not fitting for me as anything more than fable at the moment.

  21. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Bitterhermit,

    Thank you for giving me some credit (something Sirius seems incapable or unwilling to do). I have difficulty respecting anyone who isn’t willing to scrutinize their own beliefs. Doubt is not a weakness, it is what keeps us from accepting everything we are told as law. It is what allows us to understand that people like John Edwards (the so called psychic not the politician) should be arrested for crimes against humanity and Matthew McConaughey (the so called actor) should be arrested for crimes against cinema. For many of the faithful asking questions seems to be the greatest possible sin. This is a shame and very revelatory. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, nothing that is true has anything to fear from a little scrutiny.

    I don’t feel any of my questions regarding issues contained in the Old Testament are irrelevant, for the simple fact that there are a GREAT MANY sects of Christianity that strongly feel that they very much DO still ‘apply’. You must remember that my questions are for ALL the different sects of Christianity, not just any one particular one.

    DoubtingThomas

  22. “I don’t feel any of my questions regarding issues contained in the Old Testament are irrelevant”
    Forgive me – again – for imprecise wording. What I should have said is that for one who believes that Jesus fulfilled the Old Law, and that by so doing brought about the New Dispensation, those questions should be irrelevant. And by irrelevant, I mean that they are nothing with which to concern ourselves because they no longer apply.
    Again, I want to be clear that I am merely stating my mind and opinion here. I have no credentials as a Biblical scholar but the credibility of my own testimony and, more or less, considered opinions. I do have an earned MA in English and believe myself to be quite an astute critic of literature and poetry. This often colors my view of the Bible and other scripture. I see them at once as ‘holy scripture’ and as social artifacts of great literature. From a crit lit point of view, all the questions pointed out here are spot-on questions of consistency.
    Also for the record, I in no way intend offense or even persuasion to anyone of any faith or lack thereof. I am fully conscious of the fact that at times I speak with a conviction that hints my old zealotry, but my only intent is to explore these things with everyone here. I am very interested in others’ opinions, despite the fact that I, at times, grow impatient with rhetoric that goes nowhere. Also, I’m an editor by profession; which is why I ocasionally rant about wording and spelling and such (unless I’m in a serious hurry, I tend to proof these entries in Word to avail myself of the spell-checker).
    Peace & Beauty
    Fringemonkey

  23. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Thanks for the clarification.

    Help me out here, how should I address you? I usually call you bitterhermit as this was how your user name appeared but occasionally you would sign off as Fringemonkey and now I see your user name is MysticWino. Which do you prefer?

    DoubtingThomas

  24. thank you for your response to my post! i did say that i lived an exciting, fun life “to the outside world” but i distinctly remember feeling empty during that time, it was not a “realization” once i turned to God– i had always felt it. and you are right… i did return to the God of my youth. i had religion shoved down my throat since i was a little girl– i was completely turned off of religion and turned to my own gratification, seeking myself as my own god. i almost destroyed myself with my destructive behavior–severe drug and alcohol abuse, sexual activity with whoever would give me attention, disrespectful to any adult in my life, doing as i pleased when i pleased no matter who i hurt. and that was all before the age of 18…it is amazing that i survived it… i can’t explain why some people have “ears to hear” and why some don’t. i will never understand why God chose to bring me back to Him nor can i give you proof of “my” God but i do know He exist and merely saying He doesn’t because you don’t have proof is (excuse me if this sounds rude) foolishness. i agree that there are so many people who are behind the “cause of Christianity” but show no proof in their lives that they are Christ followers. that is unfortunate because it’s those kinds of people who turn others away from God. when you say “These (pregnant/new mothers) women NEVER, EVER have an unfamiliar god enter their lives.” i have to say never say never because it’s simply not true, you cannnot possible know for sure that they “never, ever” anything– you who put so much value on proof should know this! i explored further on your site all the questions you have– you must have really put a lot of time and effort into coming up with all of these questions. i started to answer some of them simply on the fact that you have distorted meaning in so many of the scriptures because you don’t fully comprehend in context the original meaning of the greek/hebrew words. i stopped myself because i don’t have the time to sit down and fully explain them (i have three little ones under the age of 5 to keep up with :)….) but surely if you looked up a lot of those words you would have some sort of understanding. i have to admit that there were a few questions that had me really thinking for days. thanks to you, i have a new found appreciation for my blind faith… a new appreciation that i can completely and wholeheartedly believe in God– you call Him unseen but i see Him in everyday life– not a face but a manifestion of His presence and it’s amazing. these words are most assuredly falling on deaf ears but you are definately an answer to my prayers– my prayer that i ask God daily to strengthen my faith! may i have child-like faith until i’m in heaven. i will still continue to pray that God will provide answers to your questions because i’m pretty certain that no man will be able to answer them. maybe your problem is your intellect overriding what you know in soul to be true– that happens so often… God is someone you seek with your heart not with your mind because He is beyond comprehension. i still would encourage you to read any of Lee Strobel’s “Case for…” books, in case you aren’t familiar with them he started out as an atheist looking to disprove God but ended up becoming a Christ follower. it’s very interesting… thanks again for your time, i hope you find your answers!
    jenn

  25. oh and one more question(okay, a few more questions)…. why do you have an entire blog dedicated to questioning about a god you don’t believe in? are you really so concerned about others lives that you can’t bear to just let people believe in God? do you feel a responsibility to question God so that you can prove He doesn’t exist? people have been trying for centuries to disprove God and so far no one has been able to do it…i’m truly asking these questions out of curiosity and not out of arrogance. why are you so troubled by people loving and worshipping a God who brings joy to their lives? maybe by turning from the God that you once believe in you are left with an emptiness that needs to be filled and you are trying to fill it with these questions… just wondering… you don’t necessarily need to answer these questions for me, maybe just for yourself if you care to do so.
    thanks again, jenn

  26. oh sorry one more thing… He did send a way to save everyone, His name is Jesus and He was fully God and fully man and all you have to do is confess you’re a sinner and believe that God sent Jesus to save you and you will save yourself from eternal separation from God. to you that may seem crazy but you can’t use the excuse anymore that God doesn’t have a plan for salvation and that He doesn’t care to save the lost because Jesus is that solution and it really is quiet easy to simply believe. didn’t you once?

  27. Help me out here, how should I address you? I usually call you bitterhermit as this was how your user name appeared but occasionally you would sign off as Fringemonkey and now I see your user name is MysticWino. Which do you prefer?

    DoubtingThomas

    How about “DM”?
    my first two initials, and a fun joke on what led to my fall [Dungeons & Dragons]. People kept telling me it was ‘of the devil’ and would lead me astray . . . In actuality it opened my mind and gave me mad ninja skills of dissociation. Which is why I’ll answer to whichever handle you prefer. With another Dave or David around, I usually prefer to go by DM or Pitch [first syllable of my by-adoption family name]. Or you can call me Skinner. Skinner suits me best for your blog, as that is the most curious persona in my cadre of personae. I used to go by Steven Oscar Lawrence as a joke, but it got stale with my evolution to human potentialism.
    Back on that “devil getcha sho ’nuff” thing, it was the D&D controversy that led me to the heretical conclusion that far too many people put far too much stock in the devil’s powers; you might get the idea from many that the devil has all the power and influence here and that God is helpless to intervene in this life. And that seems seriously inconsistent with the idea of an Almighty.
    Skinner, aka MysticWino, aka David, aka Pitch, fka bitterhermit

  28. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    MysticWino,

    I’m going to address you as MysticWino as I prefer to refer to commentators by the ‘user name’ that appears at the top of their comment so it will be clear to any others who may be reading it who I am addressing (can you say run on sentence?). Any particular reason why you changed yours from bitterhermit to MysticWino?

    Looks like I need to address jenn’s questions. How many times am I going to have to answer the age old question of why do Atheists spend any time discussing something they don’t believe in? Why are so many Christians so offended by someone questioning what they believe to be true?

    DoubtingThomas

  29. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Jenn,

    Thanks for the clarification.

    You said – “…nor can i give you proof of “my” God but i do know He exist and merely saying He doesn’t because you don’t have proof is (excuse me if this sounds rude) foolishness.”

    Allow me to paraphrase you, Jenn — Nor can I give you proof that your god doesn’t exist but I do know that he doesn’t and merely saying he DOES when you have no proof, only faith, is (excuse me if this sounds rude) foolishness. Demanding proof before belief is never a fool’s endeavor, Jenn, but I would argue that devoting your life to the hope that a thing is true, no matter how lovely the thing may be, IS. You claim to enjoy having ‘blind faith’ and ‘child-like faith’ but you must understand why someone like myself would have difficulty viewing this mindset as an admirable one. Is your religion the only thing in your life you are willing to blindly follow? If your insurance company said they were raising your rates because women named Jenn were more likely to burn their houses down, would you just go along with this or would you take a moment to consider such a claim?

    You said – “you have distorted meaning in so many of the scriptures because you don’t fully comprehend in context the original meaning of the greek/hebrew words.”

    I think what you mean to say is that I am using a version of the bible that your particular sect of Christianity doesn’t use (approve of). I ABSOLUTELY DON’T distort anything. I quote directly from the bible (KJV). I can assure you, Jenn, I am very aware of the context and meaning of the ‘original’ text. And I am also aware of the countless revisions to these texts, each of which was prompted by the desire to alter aspects of the bible that, as a result of societal evolution, no longer sat well with certain sects of Christianity. In a hundred years I expect there will be many sects of Christianity that no longer accept YOUR particular version as well. BTW, you failed to mention which version you prefer. Perhaps you’d be willing to leave comments on the posts where you believe I have unfairly portrayed your holy book. (FYI, revising the word ‘kill’ to ‘murder’ changes nothing.)

    Jenn, regarding your experience and reaction to your childhood religious indoctrination, I am curious as to how you are actively avoiding doing to your children what was done to you. What steps are you taking to assure that you don’t turn your child off to religion as you were?

    You ask – “Why do you have an entire blog dedicated to questioning about a god you don’t believe in? Are you really so concerned about others lives that you can’t bear to just let people believe in God? …why are you so troubled by people loving and worshipping a God who brings joy to their lives?”

    Jenn, the young Muslim who straps explosives to his chest and turns himself and a hundred innocent men, women and children into stains on a wall believes he will be rewarded by his god as a martyr. He loves his god as much as you love yours. He believes his god is as real as you do yours. He is as joyous in his love of his god in the moment before he pushes the button clamped in his fist as you will ever be in your life. The followers of Jim Jones, Charles Manson, L. Ron Hubbard Scientology), Marshall Applewhite (Heaven’s Gate), David Koresh, Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh, Shoko Asahara, felt their choice of religion brought them a great deal of joy as well. Would you not understand if I was troubled by these people as well? I’m sure you don’t like having your particular sect of Christianity compared to these ‘obvious’ false religions but I see no difference between them and yours. I’m sorry but it troubles me that so many people worship so many different gods, not just the Christian god. I merely focus on that one because it is the religion I was raised in and am the most familiar with. If I were raised a Muslim or a Scientologist I’m sure this site would be citing the works of L. Ron Hubbard or the Koran. And I’m not trying to prove that god (yours or any other god currently or who was once worshiped) doesn’t exist. I know gods are man made inventions but I came to this conclusion on my own. I didn’t even know any Atheists until many years after my deconversion. This site is merely a way to catalog many of the questions and observations that led me to no longer be able to accept things on ‘blind faith’ alone. I created it as a blog site in order to allow others to leave comments, as I am truly curious how others who believe as I once did can be confronted by these same questions and observations and not be affected. There is no emptiness inside me other than the pit that forms in my stomach every time I watch the news or read the paper and see another example of someone’s god belief encouraging them to commit some atrocity or someone who claimed to be strong in their faith behaving in a manner that reveals how shallow and self serving that faith usually is.

    And Jenn, clearly the advice that all one has to do is believe to be a believer is simply insufficient. My faith was once as strong, blind and child-like as yours is. It was not enough. When you remove the rose colored glasses and lift the scales from off your eyes, the world is an entirely different place. And I don’t mean “severe drug and alcohol abuse, sexual activity with whoever would give me attention, disrespectful to any adult in my life, doing as i pleased when i pleased no matter who i hurt”. Ironically these are the self same characteristics of many of those I went to Private Christian School with. Myself, I’ve never used drugs, rarely drink (never get drunk), never had a one night stand, casual sex or cheated on anyone, never been convicted of a crime, never hit a woman (or a man for that matter), and live a life I would challenge anyone to call immoral or unethical. If we have learned anything from the behavior of mankind, it is that god worship (no matter the god) or lack of god worship does not govern whether a person is ‘good’ or not. Hitler believed in the Christian God and Bill Gates is an Atheist.

    And I am very familiar with the works of Mr. Strobel. Perhaps you’ll take a moment to visit a few of these sites to help you understand why I am not an admirer.

    http://www.caseagainstfaith.com/articles/strobel.htm

    http://jesuspuzzle.humanists.net/CTVExcerptsOne.htm

    http://www.bidstrup.com/apologetics.htm

    http://www.mwillett.org/atheism/strobel.htm

    DoubtingThomas

  30. Thomas,

    Bill Gates couldn’t be an atheist because Bill Gates is the devil. As such, he’s perfectly aware God exists though he’d prefer otherwise.

    Please try to keep your comments of a factual natural from now on.

    –Sirius Knott

  31. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Sirius,

    You’re making it increasingly difficult to take anything you say seriously. Bill Gates is the devil? As in Lucifer? You must be making a joke. Are you a MAC user or something?

    DoubtingThomas

  32. I must be joking, he says….

    Yes, Thomas. That WAS a joke. Lose the cowl. I’m the one who’s supposed to be sirius. That was a pun. A bad pun.

    Thomas, I’ve found it equally difficult to take you seriously. Your objections range from the pathetically frivolous to the outrageously critical. Do you pick at nits because you lack the equipment to slay dragons?

    Now, I’ve already answered one of your insuffereble lists, mostly just to prove it could be done. in essense, so that you couldn’t claim that we don’t answer you because we can’t. I don’t recall you ever commenting on my rebuttal though.

    –Sirius Knott

  33. Bill Gates is the devil? I take it you have Vista?
    You need not disbelieve in a god to be an atheist, at least the way I understand it. To be a true unbeliever, perhaps. But you can believe totally in gods and a God and still hold to the political or moral or even religious belief that there is no room or no place or no such thing as the/an Almighty god. Ha! That’s funny. There are actually sects among atheists. Go figure. People with different opinions on non-god as well as god! How ironic is that.
    So, Thomas, why do you lead a moral/ethical life? To what ethics do you hold yourself?
    I find it very unfortunate that my experience mirrors your own as you describe it, with the cross being used as a ward against guilt instead of an icon for righteous living. But it happens in every faith and sect and cult and ethic.
    God forgive us every one!
    Mystic Wino (I left my hermitage – the wine eases my journey and provides great enjoyment)

  34. you are absolutely right on a lot of those points…. i can only go on what i have seen in my own life whether or not God is real. i just had the conversation about “bad Christians” with my sister this afternoon. it really is so unfortunate that there are people out there who claim to be Christians but don’t model a Christ-like life. Satan preys on people like that to prove his case (like when he used Peter to try to distract Christ from his purpose– and Jesus said, “get thee behind me Satan”… He wasn’t calling Peter Satan He was directly talking to the spirit of Satan that was trying to distract Christ from his purpose. Satan tries to destroy all of Christ’s followers because they are a threat to his mission of eternally separating God’s creation from their creator. while he is not all powerfull like God, he does use deception by observing our behavior and tempting us in our weak spots.) i don’t believe that God would condone violence today as the muslim’s “god” does (and we certainly do not believe in the same god.) blowing up people in the name of “god” doesn’t fit with my belief system. the God i believe in has called us not to change our society for the better but to bring the gospel to the world and this doesn’t set well with a lot of people– therefore it brings about some conflict. i’m not a believer in “forcing religion,” i simply state my belief and i let others find God themselves. their salvation is not up to me i’m only suppose to carry a message. when other people start bringing in their own laws and their own rules to the gospel, that’s when trouble starts. my belief is simply this: i am a sinner (even though i consider myself to be a good person i still fall short) and i am in need of forgiveness by a Savior in order to spend eternity with God. it’s pretty much that simple. i use the Bible as a guide to follow (the NIV version) and it works for me and my family. i fully intend on teaching this to my children however the difference between how i intend to do that and the way i was raised will be this: i will still give them a choice. i won’t fear monger my children nor will i beat them over the head with the Bible. i believe it is the Holy Spirit that does the work in a persons life and i don’t stand in the way of that. i believe strongly in natural consequences, i will teach them Biblical principles and who Jesus is and what He came to do, that God is the creator of all things and that He has a love for us that we cannot comprehend, that there is a heaven and a hell but it is our choice whether or not to except that and either to spend eternity with Him in heaven or spend eternity separated from Him. will i be disappointed if they choose not to believe, yes, will i love them any less, no, will i still continue to share God’s Word with them, you bet. I believe in a loving God and there are countless times that i have known that love, that is why i believe He exists. when i said that you had taken some of the Biblical references out of context i meant that for example that when Jesus said in Luke 21:32 that this generation will certainly not pass away until all of these things have happened the word “generation” is actually “race” meaning the human race. it’s just little things like that that can be taken out of context. another example is when the Bible refers to something being more than number “10,000×10,000” 10,000 was actually as high as they could count at that time therefore to them it meant “infinitely.” i’m not a Bible scholar but i do know it is the most accurate and oldest historical piece of liturature that has ever existed. that’s hard to refute. and if you don’t believe it’s true why try to rationalize it? i have thoroughly enjoyed these back and forth conversations with you… when i have some more time i fully intend to check out those sites on Lee Strobel but i highly doubt they will change my mind. there will always be someone or something out there trying to disprove anything that points to God as the One and Only. i am a believer for life… and while i can’t always say that i’m happy, i can definitely say that i have hope in a God who brings me great joy.

  35. oh yeah, i forgot…i am a skeptic of just about everything… evironmentalists, doctors, insurance, media… you name it, i’m skeptical for sure. it drives my husband crazy. so yes, God is the only thing that i blindly follow… only because i have experienced the proof that i need to do so. not to say that i don’t have doubts every once in awhile especially when it has to do with a tragedy or bad experiences (i kind of just went through one and i definitely started to question…) but God has been faithful in confirming to me that He is with me, call it peace, call it unexplained answers to prayer (like you were), but until He is no longer faithful i will continue to believe. i use those opportunities of doubt to seek Biblical knowledge and to seek answers, while i try to on a consistant basis sometimes it’s not always possible considering that i have 3 little ones who need my constant attention. i’m grateful for those times of doubt and trial because it is usually getting through those times that makes my faith stronger… it saddens me to know that it didn’t turn out that way for you, that your doubt pushed you further away. i have no explanation for that and i won’t even pretend to know…

  36. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Jenn,

    Thank you for your comments. I’m always intrigued by an individual’s personal explanation for believing. I still have a problem with your contention that I am taking things the wrong way when using scripture to support a point. You have no idea how irritating it is to have one Christian after another tell me that I am not using the ‘correct’ translation of the bible and I should instead be using this particular one (theirs). Your use of Luke 21:32 is a PERFECT example. In EVERY version of the bible (New Testament) I have (KJV, ASV, LIT, YGB, DRB, WEY, WEB, ISV, WNT, MNT) not a single one uses ‘race’ in place of ‘generation’. Jenn, you claim to be a skeptic in everything BUT your religious beliefs. If this is so, I ask you to use that skeptic’s mind to consider the WHY of these endless revisions. WHY would a specific sect of Christianity decide that thousands and thousands of years of translation had been wrong? Could it possibly be that the message of a particular bit of scripture became such a point of conflict that it needed to be altered in order to sit well with the more evolved Christian? If a so-called psychic had predicted that in 2003 the United States would invade Saudi Arabia and later, after the US had invaded Iraq, the psychic went back and revised his prediction to say Iraq, just how far would your skeptic’s eyes roll into the back of your head? These constant revisions have nothing to do with realizing a more perfect translation, Jenn, they are purely about revising the parts of the bible that certain sects of Christianity find unappealing or unacceptable. MAN decides what god says, any god. MAN decided which ‘sacred scriptures’ would be included in the holy canon. You may find the careful PC wording of the NIV comforting and satisfying but that does not make it a more accurate translation. The 6th commandment is thou shalt not kill. Many modern day believers like to retranslate it to the more PC ‘murder’. Understandable, as the god depicted in the bible so loves to kill, but if he is perfect, all of his killings therefore MUST be justified, right? So all the dead babies floating on the flood waters of God’s great tantrum weren’t murdered, they were killed, justifiably. I’m sorry, Jenn, but the bible IS NOT the ‘most accurate’ nor is it the ‘oldest’ piece of literature that has ever existed. In fact it is a commonly held belief that the Christian bible took most of its OT stories from the Sumerian ‘bible’. There ancient writings per date any Christian text. For a fascinating example of the Sumerian depiction of their flood story check out this link:

    http://theoldpath.com/sumerflood.htm

    For more examples of the striking similarities between the writings of the Sumerian people and the bible check out this link:

    http://www.historel.net/english/orient/03mesop.htm

    Take Care,

    DoubtingThomas

  37. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    Sirius.

    I’m sorry if it wasn’t obvious to me that you were making a joke but my reaction was based on how you conduct yourself in your other comments on this site. I have seen absolutely no evidence of a sense of humor, only a stubborn, arrogant insistence that your biased, “because the bible tells me so” ‘logic’ somehow disputes my criticisms. Your constant personal attacks are baseless, unfair and tiresome. You may find my questions and observations insufferable but they are not frivolous. They are not pathetic. They are not ‘nit picky’. And you didn’t already answer one of my lists. I gave you a list of examples of the cruelty of the biblical god and you responded by spouting dogma and ‘explaining’ the nature of god to me and justifying his every action with your personal view of your god. As usual your position could be summed up as “because the bible tells me so”. Why do you continue to believe that this is an acceptable explanation to someone who doesn’t believe in the legitimacy of your holy book? If you were critical of the beliefs of a Scientologist and this person’s sole defense was regurgitating passages from the writings of L. Ron Hubbard, how difficult would it be for you to take this person seriously? And I’m sure this Scientologist would find your questions insufferable.

    I welcome your comments on any of my posts, Sirius, but I get turned off when almost every single one of them contains at least two or three insults. Whiteman0o0 agrees with me as often as you do, Sirius, and yet he has never stooped as low as you so regularly do. Is it too much to ask that you put a little more effort into exemplifying your savior and keeping things civil?

    DoubtingThomas

  38. doubtingthomas426 Says:

    MysticWino,
    I believe in civility. I believe in right and wrong. I believe in good and bad. My moral and ethical choices in life are entirely personal ones, as I believe they are with all of mankind. I don’t believe any Christian is more moral than any Atheist or any Hindu or any Scientologist. I also believe our DEFINITION of what is right and wrong or what is good and bad, what is moral, what is ethical, is a personal one. Some may believe that the consumption of alcohol or drugs is wrong/bad. I don’t drink often but I’m only opposed to getting drunk (for personal reasons). I don’t do drugs but I actually am for the legalization (and more importantly, the regulation) of marijuana. I’ve never killed someone but if there was a position open as executioner at Leon’s Rapist Execution Outlet I would definitely pick up an application. I’ve never cheated on a woman but I believe remaining sexually faithful to a single woman (a beautiful ideal) is laughably unnatural. Is my moral and ethical position based on how my parents raised me? Is it because I was raised in the church? Is it based on civilized necessity? Is it entirely psychological? I frankly don’t know. But it seems to be based on self respect and whether you have any. Clearly those with little or none are much more likely to behave in a way that would be judged as amoral. Would I have as much self respect if I made less ethical choices in life? I imagine I would. How much of my ethical choices are made based on a desire to retain my self respect? This discussion is likely to lead into a new post but I am interested in your thoughts, Mysticwino.

    DoubtingThomas

  39. Thomas,
    Yes. To some extent the question and your answer lead to a tangent . . . maybe. I hold the same point of view I read from your post: moral living is independent of religion. I kind of intended to tease this out of you. You’ve made the point in a round-about way in the negative in saying that being an atheist doesn’t make you amoral or evil, etc. It is important to me to point out this seperation, because a great many people seem to be under the false assumption that shunning of god/gods and or religion are an excuse to live in some bestial sort of hedonistic freedom. My experience is that most hedonists whom I would consider amoral are pagans (for me this is a neutral term, not a pejorative). The most immoral people I know are the ones who taught me Christianity, because they are Michaelangelos of hypocrisy. However, I have met many moral and compassionate people who come from all kinds of backgrounds: Mormons, J’vah Witnesses, Seventh Day Adventists, Muslims, Catholics, Episcopalians, Lutherans, Universalists, Wicans, gnostics, agnostics, and poets.
    While I do approach the Bible and Christianity as a believer, I also take from the Bible and Christianity a great deal of pulp for my own Human Potential melange of a theology. I am very much into self-empowerment and empowerment of others. And so I very much appreciate your stance on self-respect as a guiding ethos.
    MysticWino

  40. i’m sorry, i didn’t mean that you weren’t using the correct “version” of the Bible… i was just saying that translations from the original text written in Greek/Hebrew/Aramaic can be misunderstood in any version. just like when you translate from any other language (Spanish, French, Italian etc.) you have to study it directly from the original words in the context of that language to understand what the meaning is. as i understand it, great implicit care was taken when copying the text in the greek language, it was a high honor to be able to copy text and it was done letter by letter so as not to have any mistakes. yes, men wrote the Bible but you have to admit that it is accurate, the Bible has yet to be proven fallible by any historian. i don’t believe that it was copied off of any other “bible” but that is just my opinion. i’m not in a position to argue any points with you at the moment because i’m not a biblical scholar, i just know that when i have done in depth word studies with scripture between different versions and the original text it was made so much clearer to me and it wasn’t always in a way that made me “comfortable” so to speak. i don’t appreciate the “emergent” movement in today’s Christians that holds to the “feel warm and fuzzy” religion. God was and is a just God and while i don’t always understand the harshness of the punishment in the OT, i do understand that Jesus Christ paid the price and took all of punishment for us so that that punishment was no longer necessary (there were no more mass extinctions in the New Testament right?) as understand it, everyone that was “punished” in the Bible in the OT deserved it. i can’t explain how or why the women and children had to be punished so harshly as well but i still believe that the babies and children went to heaven and that God knows what He’s doing. i’m quite certain that you absolutely don’t believe that or agree with me but it’s okay, we obviously have different view points. and i guess because i love God and still fear Him and i have reverence for Him, i trust His Word and how He has shown Himself to me that i’m comfortable with a little bit of mystery to Him. i guess we’ll know for sure when we die huh? i appreciate your questioning and i’m intrigued by your knowledge. thanks for humoring me and my attempts to explain myself to you.

  41. Greetings All,

    I know it has been some weeks since my initial post in this particular forum. Although I have been lurking around and replying here and there as the opportunities rose, I have wanted to come back to my original post. And, as I have seen a lot of discussion about whether babies go to hell or not, this seems to be a good time to jump in.

    DT, in my original post I tried to honor your guidelines that we not use the Bible or “faith” as an answer. Well, I didn’t use the Bible and inadvertantly committed the other faux pas. But when I said “I. . . believe”, I meant what I believe based on what I’ve deduced from what I know (the Bible says). However, I know of no other way to address a theological question that with a theological answer. Which brings me to another point.

    MAZZ said: ” When jesus said this, presumably he was speaking to at most a couple hundred people, so what about everyone that died 5 minutes later in the rest of the world? Or even in the rest of the city. Quite possibly someone died the moment jesus stopped speaking, did that person go to hell for not believing in jesus? Even today there are people that have never heard of jesus or christianity. Does god punish people who has never heard of his son? And if the answer is no, why not? Doesnt that prove that no one has to believe in jesus to go to heaven?

    I believe if Christians actually pondered these questions here they would understand the absolute impossibility of the basis of their religion and it would absolutely crumble.” To which you agreed. But, let me ask why? Why is this the golden question? Do we presume that the Bible writers left these questions unanswered and hoped no one would notice? I submit that the answers are there. And that the true question is “did Jesus rise from the dead?” Paul said that that was the lynchpin of our faith and if Christ has not risen then we believe in vain. I bring that up because of what Jesus himself said concerning these questions. If he did rise, then, I believe his comments warrant study. If he did not, then his comments are moot and so are the questions.

    Now—-What about those who died before Christ or while he was speaking

    John 5:25; 28-29 “I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live”. ” Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out–those who have done good will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned”.

    What about those who have not heard of Jesus (Amazon tribes etc)

    First, Jesus said in Matt 8:10 that people would come from the east and west (all over the world) to sit at the table with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
    Also, consider Rev 7:9 a great multitude of every nation, tribe, people and language (NIV) In my mind the language part would consider temporality as nations and regions change languages over time and consider many languages that are dead and were dead in Jesus time (Sumerian, Aramaic)
    Also consider 2Kings Ch5 Naaman, (a pagan) goes to the prophet of God for healing and asks to take back some of Israel’s dirt so he can worship God. Also consider Acts 8:26-40 the account of Philip and an Ethiopian eucnuch.

    What about children too young to make a decision

    Jeremiah 1:5 “Before thou camest fourth out of the womb, I sanctified thee” (KJV) (Does God play favorites?)

    1 John 2:12 “I write to you dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name” (Some translations use “little” in place of “dear”, but 2:13 goes on to address fathers and 14 addresse young men so, these would seem to lend credence to John addressing “little ones”.
    And Don’t forget Matt 19:13; Mark 10:13; Luke 18:15 about Jesus saying “let the little children come to me for such is the kingdom of Heaven” (DT, I am aware of the qualms you have with that statement)

    Finally the hard one what about those (adults) who are mentally unable to decide. Well, I was disappointed not to find what I was looking for. Lev 4 talks about unintentional sin and becoming ceremonially unclean. Those who were unaware of their uncleanness were to be cleansed AS SOON AS they became aware. They were not struck down beforehand, they were not penalized for the time in which they were unclean. In my memory I had thought I had read before that they were not considered guilty until they became AWARE of their sin. Alas, I did not find that. But I surmise that if we are not aware of our condition, we can do nothing about it.

    Until Next Time

  42. John 5:25; 28-29 “I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live”. ” Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out–those who have done good will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned”.

    Does that mean that the sins of “those who have done good” will be forgiven? The bible says that no man is perfect and without sin so the passage from john seems to suggest that people that died before jesus came to earth will get an auto pass without actually having to have the same faith that todays christians do. Since they are already dead they arent bound by the same circumstances of even contemporary jews at the time of jesus. Those jews and gentiles that were alive to see jesus had to take on faith that he was actually the son of god and/or god himself but those that are already dead doesnt have to take it on faith because who else could it be that is talking to them while they are dead?

    “What about those who have not heard of Jesus (Amazon tribes etc)

    First, Jesus said in Matt 8:10 that people would come from the east and west (all over the world) to sit at the table with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
    Also, consider Rev 7:9 a great multitude of every nation, tribe, people and language (NIV) In my mind the language part would consider temporality as nations and regions change languages over time and consider many languages that are dead and were dead in Jesus time (Sumerian, Aramaic)”

    These passages at first glance may be appealing as an answer but in fact are not an answer to the question. Today there are people in all parts of the world, thanks mostly do to colonialization and missionairies so if we take the bible as literal truth there ARE people of different nations, tribes etc. that are christians but still does not account for people that are remote enough to not have heard of jesus. Also, am I to believe that those quotes suggest that people all over the planet immediately heard jesus’ voice as he was preaching? If that is the case then why wasnt it noted anywhere by any other civilizations?

    What about children too young to make a decision

    Jeremiah 1:5 “Before thou camest fourth out of the womb, I sanctified thee” (KJV) (Does God play favorites?)

    1 John 2:12 “I write to you dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name” (Some translations use “little” in place of “dear”, but 2:13 goes on to address fathers and 14 addresse young men so, these would seem to lend credence to John addressing “little ones”.
    And Don’t forget Matt 19:13; Mark 10:13; Luke 18:15 about Jesus saying “let the little children come to me for such is the kingdom of Heaven” (DT, I am aware of the qualms you have with that statement)

    Does “sanctified before you came out the womb” mean that people are born sinless? That statement seems to fly in the face of christianity. It would suggest that people dont actually need christianity as long as they lead a “good” life. The quote “let the little children come to me” doesnt answer the question at all. That quote says that children has to go to jesus to be saved. The question is, what happens to children too young to make the decision to go to jesus.

    The problem with using the bible to answer questions is that it never actually answers anything. In some cases it just leads to more questions. The bible is incredibly flawed and usually self-contradicting which makes it not a good place to seek answers. Due to the fact that there are many authors of the bible ideas not lining up very well is almost inevitable. Id go so far as to say that actual works of fiction written by one author will answer some of lifes questions much better than the bible.

  43. “It is a statistical fact that the more inteligent, highly educated a person, the less likely they are to belive in a god. In other words, the less educated, or more ignorant a person is, the more likely they are to believe in a god.”
    What is your source for this statistic? What is the definition, according to the stats, of education. Education can take on many forms.

  44. Question 24 – Giants and dragons.

    What version of the Bible are you reading? The word for dragons is sometimes translated as serpent, sea monster, sea creature, whale, etc. This seems more like a translation problem than the Bible saying there were actual dragons as we think of them today.
    As for giants, well Goliath measured about 9 1/2 feet tall. The tallest recorded man in modern history was 8ft 11 inches. So Goliath is hardly out of the realm of possibility.

  45. “Why isn’t knowledge of God a natural part of our existence? Why aren’t we born knowing him? In other words, why if a man is born and left alone, and he never encounters a Christian or reads a bible, he would live his whole life never knowing or believing in God? If God is real and deserving of our love, why has he stacked the deck so highly in favor of mankind eventually finding themselves in hell rather than heaven?”

    You assume much here. 1. You assume that the knowledge of God is not a natural part of our existence. Before science explained a lot of the stuff that occurs (sunrises, earthquakes, etc.) humans came to the conclusion that God or gods caused these things. The Bible (sorry for using it, but it seems relevant) also states that God is known through his creation.
    2.You assume that someone who never encounters a Christian or reads a Bible will have no knowledge of God. Read Eternity in Their Hearts by Don Richardson, for ways God has shown himself to many cultures.
    3. You assume that God needs to prove himself deserving of our love and that if he does not act in a way that you think is proper he has failed.
    Why should God have to prove anything to you?

  46. Question 16
    Seriously, get a version of the Bible that uses modern English.
    Anyhoo, again your question is filled with assumptions.
    1. You assume that God did not talk to others like he did Rebekah.
    2. You assume that what Peter saw was in the physical world. The Bible says it was a vision (i.e., not occurring in the natural world).
    3. You assume God does not have conversations with people today. See Brad Jersak’s Can You Hear me.
    4. You assume Christians would think people were mad or lying if they heard them say they were having conversations with God. Maybe some would, but many Christians believe they hear from God regularly. Myself included. Just 2 days ago God told me to pray for a friend. I later found out she was having emergency heart surgery around the time I was praying for her. Coincidence? Insanity?

  47. Question 35
    yes they had sex. Do you really think they needed to be taught how? I mean, isn’t it fairly obvious?

  48. Question 36
    How else would childbirth have been free from pain?
    Do a search of hypnobirthing. Or hypnosis used instead of anesthesia in surgeries.

  49. Paul,

    First, thank you for taking the time to put your two cents in. I truly appreciate it and appreciate your efforts to reference the question by # or simply copy and paste it at the top of your comment. Both are helpful.

    Regarding the fact that the less educated a person is, the more likely they are to believe in a god (#3), I’m a bit surprised that you weren’t aware of this statistic as it has been this way for a very, very long time. It isn’t difficult to find the statistics yourself but here are a few links if you are interested:

    http://www.gallup.com/poll/27682/OneThird-Americans-Believe-Bible-Literally-True.aspx

    http://home.comcast.net/~pobrien48/educated.htm

    http://www.huppi.com/kangaroo/L-thinkingchristians.htm

    http://www.gallup.com/poll/21811/American-Beliefs-Evolution-vs-Bibles-Explanation-Human-Origins.aspx

    http://www.gallup.com/poll/14107/Third-Americans-Say-Evidence-Has-Supported-Darwins-Evolution-Theory.aspx

    Regarding the Giant and Dragon mentions in the bible (#24), it wasn’t a translation error. The people of that time believed in a great many mythical creatures, dragons and giants were just a few. Of course, some later translations took the opportunity to revise the word dragon to mean serpent, jackal, etc. because it became common knowledge that dragons were creatures of fiction and could not be allowed to be represented in the pages of the holy word of God. And the modern day ‘giants’ you are referring to (such as the late 8’11” Robert Pershing Wadlow) are almost always suffering from a birth defect (Acromegalic Gigantism). They are not a giant race. ALL of Robert Wadlow’s family was of normal size except him. The giants of the bible were a people (Emims, Anakims, Zamzummims, Nephilim). They came from a land. They were not the occasional fella with an overactive pituitary gland.

    Regarding question # 34, you seem to be saying that because mankind has invented thousands of gods over the years that this proves that YOUR god made himself known? Huh? Isn’t it more likely that your god is just one amongst many rather than uniquely true? And I don’t mind you citing the bible just as long as you understand that my translation for any biblical citation as proof is “because the bible tells me so”. This is why I urge people to avoid this practice. I haven’t read Eternity in their Hearts, but I am familiar with its message (that ALL cultures have been touched by the CHRISTIAN god). But aren’t you suggesting, therefore, that your god is incompetent or just not very persuasive? The Christian god revealed himself to all of these people and they all were so unimpressed that they decided that they’d rather worship something else. I’m sure they’ll all give themselves the old ‘could have had a V8’ smack to the forehead once they arrive in hells eternal fire. Doh!

    Regarding the lack of casual conversations with God (#16), first you once again complain that I am not using one of the more modern, revised, politically correct versions of the bible? I’m sorry, Paul, but the more man manipulates the words of the bible to suit his own purposes the less I can respect it. I tend to stick with the KJV (the version I was raised with). Your points on 1 & 2 are invalid as I didn’t assume Rebekah was the only one God spoke to in that manner (the entire point of my question) and whether Peter is having this conversation in a vision or in reality is also not the point. And, yes, I’m sure it’s no surprise to you to learn that my eyes roll whenever someone claims to have a conversation with God. Do you know why, Paul? Because there are millions of people making this claim about thousands of gods. I bet you roll your eyes at all of them too, don’t you? But not those who are talking to your particular god, right? They are having REAL conversations. No question about it.

    Regarding the issue of whether or not Adam and Eve had sex before being kicked out of the Garden of Eden and was it only for procreation (#35), you give a rather casual and dismissive answer. Your reason for believing they had sex is what exactly? And your bizarre suggestion that an uneducated adult male and female, when left alone would simply know instinctively what their genitals are for other than pissing truly blew my mind. If Eve was capable of getting pregnant, she must have been having her regular period, yes? —-Nevermind. I was going to go into explicit detail here explaining how unlikely the ‘learn on your own’ scenario is but I don’t think it should be necessary. How about this, let’s meet in the middle and suggest they learned what to do with their bits and pieces by watching the animals have sex. I can buy that.

    Regarding question # 36 — Did pain exist before Eve ate from the Tree of Knowledge? If so, why? If part of the punishment for eating the fruit was pain during childbirth, does this mean pain receptors didn’t exist in the female body before this? How else would childbirth have been free from pain? You didn’t really answer, you merely suggest that hypnosis can cause a person not to feel pain. If this is the case why won’t it work for me? Why won’t it work for ANYONE WHO DOESN’T BUY INTO HYPNOSIS? Why does hypnosis ONLY work on those who believe in it? Hypnosis is quackery. It’s two people playing their roles out to a suggested, mutually agreed upon conclusion. Regardless, I don’t recall the bible mentioning anything about Eve practicing this particular pain avoidance technique. So, did she have pain receptors before she ate of the forbidden fruit? If so, why? If not, are you suggesting childbirth would have NEVER been painful? Just for humankind or for animals as well?

    Anyway, thanks again for giving me your perspective.

    Take Care,

    DoubtingThomas

  50. DT
    A lot to respond to here.
    Thanks for supplying the references where you got your stats info. You are correct that I could have done a search myself, but then there would be no guarantee that I was looking at the same information you were. Stats are tricky things and can be misrepresented and interpreted, so seeing the same info is helpful. I have not had a chance to look at the links thoroughly, so maybe I’ll address this later.
    Dragons: My point is you have to look at what the original writers meant. The KJV translators interpreted certain things because of the beliefs of their day. In so doing they sometimes translated incorrectly. To attribute their misunderstandings to the original writers is sloppy. Now, id the original writers had described the beasts as fire breathing, or having magical powers, you would have a case. As it is all you have is a mistranslation.
    Giants, my point in mentioning these modern “giants” and the height of the “giant” Goliath is that when the Bible speaks of giants it is not speaking of the creatures of myth. It is speaking of very tall people. Some have even argued that Goliath did have gigantism. Could a whole people group have had it? Or could a whole people group have been abnormally tall? Perhaps, after all there are whole tribes of abnormally short people (in comparison with most people), the Pygmies.
    Question 34
    What I am saying is that humans’ normal response to nature is believing in a god or gods. I do believe that God has revealed himself, but I also believe in sin, demons, and other influences that muddle and confuse and deceive. I’m not going to recount all of Eternity In Their Hearts, if you want a more thorough argument, you can read it.
    #16 My complaint in this case had more to do with, “separated from thy bowels” I mean who talks that way? I too grew up with the KJV and it helped me immensely when I had to read Shakespeare, but why not read something in modern English? The New KJV keeps the basic translation, but uses modern English. Your unwillingness to use a modern translation because it “manipulates the words of the bible to suit his own purposes” shows how little you know of proper Bible translation or the politics of the KJV. If you are truly seeking answers and if you have truly studied the Bible you would want to know how and why biblical scholars have translated the Bible. To cling to one translation because it serves YOUR purpose, is disingenuous.
    Your question “How does God choose who to have a conversation with” implies you believe he chooses to have them with some people and not with others. As to the vision part, it does matter if you believe that it was happening in the physical then you can legitimately wonder why Peter did not eat. If you understand that it was a vision, then him not eating becomes a matter of practicality. But as it is a tangential point to your question, you are right in that it does not matter to your question. No, I do not roll my eyes. As I stated before, I believe in demons. They can speak to people and even perform miracles. I’m curious as to why you did not address my personal example. I can give you many more conversations that have similar results. Are they all coincidences? Am I insane (my psychologist wife doesn’t think so). Maybe I have ESP? or maybe God really is speaking to me.
    #35 OK, I admit it I was being cavalier, but I find the question a bit on the “so what” side. What does it matter? And how is the question unique to the Bible? And I’ll admit I have heard of clueless adults not knowing what to do with their genitals. But if even if their are a few clueless people, I think most people can figure it out. Also, if you believe in evolution (which I assume due to the whole atheism thing) how did the first humans learn to have sex if they did not figure it out themselves?
    My reason for believing they had sex is because God told them to. I assume they obeyed him. But what if they did not have sex before “the fall” so what? Or are you one of those people who think “eating the fruit” is a metaphor for sex?
    The pain question
    My point in mentioning hypnosis is that there are ways to experience birth without pain. So, there could have been pain receptors and no pain. Or pain receptors could have been a direct result of the fall. “Hypnosis is quackery” really? Why? It obviously works for some people. That it does not work for everyone does not make it quackery. Not even all medicines always work for everyone. But that is beside the point, the point is there is a way for pain free childbirth.
    Also, why the departure from the KJV on this one? It does not mention pain, but sorrow, “I will greatly multiply thy SORROW and thy conception; in SORROW thou shalt bring forth children” (Gen 3:16) and even if you use the word pain, it does not say pain did not exist before hand, but that the pain would multiply. Again, this shows your lack of Biblical knowledge (despite your claims otherwise) or your deliberate misrepresentation of what the Bible actually says.
    But lets say that Eve, Adam and the animals did have pain receptors. One possible reason would have been to prevent them from harming themselves. For example, doing something that would result in the loss of a limb. Here’s a question, why does it matter either way? I mean how does either choice prove of disprove the Bible?
    Let me restate a point that I have made throughout. If you are truly seeking answers as you claim, then do some research. This would include: reading writers that address some of your questions, looking at different translations (to get a better sense of how others view the intent of the writers), and learning the history of the times (to see how the particular verse or passage was taken at the time). There is a lot that the Biblical writers assumed their audiences knew, but have been forgotten to many. This effects our interpretation of the scripture. I have suggested some books, let me suggest some more. Everything Must Change by Brian McLaren, the Christians for Biblical Equality website (www.cbeinternational.org), Beyond Sex roles by Gilbert Bilezikian, I Suffer Not a Woman by Richard and Catherine Kroeger, reasons to believe (www.reasons.org). These all deal with some of your questions and/or translation issues and historical context issues.

  51. 1. John 5:25; 28-29 “I tell you the truth, a time is coming and has now come when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live”. ” Do not be amazed at this, for a time is coming when all who are in their graves will hear his voice and come out–those who have done good will rise to live, and those who have done evil will rise to be condemned”.
    Does that mean that the sins of “those who have done good” will be forgiven? The bible says that no man is perfect and without sin so the passage from john seems to suggest that people that died before jesus came to earth will get an auto pass without actually having to have the same faith that todays christians do. Since they are already dead they arent bound by the same circumstances of even contemporary jews at the time of jesus. Those jews and gentiles that were alive to see jesus had to take on faith that he was actually the son of god and/or god himself but those that are already dead doesnt have to take it on faith because who else could it be that is talking to them while they are dead?

    You’re right in that all have sinned and have fallen short of the glory. But Jesus also said that he did not come to do away with the law but to fulfill the law. It is Jesus’ blood sacrifice that allows us to come to God. But salvation ultimately comes from repentance, not an easy belief. In the book of Jonah, Jonah preaches to the Ninevites and they repent and God does not bring calamity on them. So, it shows that God accepted their repentance Matt 3:8 Bring forth the fruits meet for repentance. Faith is not just “a belief” but it leads to action (See Hebrews 11). Paul said “To those who through persistence seek glory, honor and immortality he will give eternal life.But for those who are self-seeking and who reject the good and follow evil there will be wrath and anger…first for the Jew and then for the gentile; but glory honor and peace for everyone who does good. For God does not show favoritism. All who sin apart from the law will perish apart form the law and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law. For it is not those who hear the law who are righteous in God’s sight, it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous.(Romans 2:7-13) And if you’re going to say that Now “okay I don’t need Jesus after all”, the difference is that you HAVE heard and if you deny him before men, he will deny you before his Father and the angels.

    “What about those who have not heard of Jesus (Amazon tribes etc)
    First, Jesus said in Matt 8:10 that people would come from the east and west (all over the world) to sit at the table with Abraham, Isaac and Jacob.
    Also, consider Rev 7:9 a great multitude of every nation, tribe, people and language (NIV) In my mind the language part would consider temporality as nations and regions change languages over time and consider many languages that are dead and were dead in Jesus time (Sumerian, Aramaic)”
    These passages at first glance may be appealing as an answer but in fact are not an answer to the question. Today there are people in all parts of the world, thanks mostly do to colonialization and missionairies so if we take the bible as literal truth there ARE people of different nations, tribes etc. that are christians but still does not account for people that are remote enough to not have heard of jesus. Also, am I to believe that those quotes suggest that people all over the planet immediately heard jesus’ voice as he was preaching? If that is the case then why wasnt it noted anywhere by any other civilizations?

    Immediately heard his voice. It wasn’t necessary. In all the cases that we have, it starts with ONE PERSON. Jonah preaching to Nineveh, Naaman from the 2 Kings story (someone else told him) The Ethiopian Eunuch and Philip. All it takes is for one person to know and start the process of change. Also, I’m going to go out on a limb here and I’m sure I’ll stir up some historians/philosophers in the group. But in 399 BC Socrates was put on trial for being an atheist and trying to start a new religion as he referred to the Greek “gods of this city” as false gods. And he speaks of “the God” that spoke to him at the Oracle of Delphi. Could this be? Just asking.

    What about children too young to make a decision
    Jeremiah 1:5 “Before thou camest fourth out of the womb, I sanctified thee” (KJV) (Does God play favorites?)
    1 John 2:12 “I write to you dear children, because your sins have been forgiven on account of his name” (Some translations use “little” in place of “dear”, but 2:13 goes on to address fathers and 14 addresse young men so, these would seem to lend credence to John addressing “little ones”.
    And Don’t forget Matt 19:13; Mark 10:13; Luke 18:15 about Jesus saying “let the little children come to me for such is the kingdom of Heaven” (DT, I am aware of the qualms you have with that statement)
    Does “sanctified before you came out the womb” mean that people are born sinless? That statement seems to fly in the face of christianity. It would suggest that people dont actually need christianity as long as they lead a “good” life. You’re right in that many people believe (mistakenly) that we are born sinners. That comes from Psalm 51:5 where David is confessing his guilt. Notice that David said first notice that David said “I was brought forth in iniquity”, not “all men are”. Also, we are “born into” a sinful world. Not born with sin in us. But rather we acquire it from our environment
    The quote “let the little children come to me” doesnt answer the question at all. That quote says that children has to go to jesus to be saved. The question is, what happens to children too young to make the decision to go to jesus.

    Matt 18:3 “Except ye be converted and become as little children ye shall not enter the kingdom of heaven” Luke 18:16 Suffer the little children to come unto me and forbid them not for such is the kingdom of heaven” Sounds to me that these little children are going to heaven.

  52. “Does that mean that the sins of “those who have done good” will be forgiven?”
    “You’re right in that all have sinned and have fallen short of the glory. But Jesus also said that he did not come to do away with the law but to fulfill the law. It is Jesus’ blood sacrifice that allows us to come to God. But salvation ultimately comes from repentance, not an easy belief.”

    Your answer does not prove your point. The question is what happened to the people who died before jesus came to earth and the people that could not have known about jesus. Beyond repenting people MUST accept jesus as their savior to get to heaven. As far as I know that is a hallmark of every popular sect of christianity. Saying “im sorry” just doesnt cut it to get to heaven according to christians.

    “Matt 18:3“Except ye be converted and become as little children ye shall not enter the kingdom of heaven” Luke 18:16 Suffer the little children to come unto me and forbid them not for such is the kingdom of heaven” Sounds to me that these little children are going to heaven.”

    Is this passage meant to say that all children are going to heaven? That raises the question which has been mentioned before of age of accountability. At what age is it that people make the move from child to adult? At what age does the bible decide that people are able to make their choice? Also the passage there by Luke looks like it says to me that those “little children” have to be indoctrinated into christianty before going to heaven. If im wrong could you kindly explain what “suffer the little children to come unto me” means. Doesnt look like a pass for the kiddies.

  53. What does “suffer the little children to come unto me” mean?

    In the English of the 17thc KJV, “suffer” would mean “to let ” or “allow”.

    In this passage (Luke 18:15-17) And they brought unto him also infants, that he would touch them. But when his disciples saw it, THEY REBUKED THEM. But Jesus called them unto him, and said, “suffer the little children to come unto me and FORBID THEM NOT for of such is the Kingdom of God”.

  54. hackjaws Says:

    (I hope it is ok if I answer them all, this is pretty simple stuff. Whomever you are, these questions
    are the typical questions asked at sunday school by very
    active children–you should have went, as then you would now be on far more interesting questions,
    which is to say, you are still in your infancy as a born again Christian; You do ask the questions, so
    you have been reached by the Spirit. So believe already.)

    1. There is no sorrow in heaven, so there will be no missing of loved ones that “did not make it.”
    Age should not be a question, as time is associated with earth, where God is eternal; Therefore,
    eternity in heaven is timeless, where age is based upon time. Bodily functions are a function of
    waste, where in heaven things would be perfect, no waste. Sex is a facet of the fallen man, there is no
    hint of sex in the text before the fall, possibly God had another system in Mind, besides our manliness
    that gives women pain, in sex, and then in birth. The form of our bodies, this is not knowable, yet,
    the Bible does hint at some sort of personal-ness, as we would be worshiping God, giving thanks, and
    all that, so what would we be thankful for? For surviving this evil riddled world, and we would have
    some sort of reckoning of this world to be thankful. The smells seem heavenly as God smells the incents
    burned, and smells the meat and lamb sacrificed on the altar.

    Many of these refer to concepts in the Scriptures, but one can grasp the totality of our concept of
    heaven: It will be perfect, is this not the heart of our Godly ideas? Is some imperfection of our wives
    or husbands not the source of our momentary grief in a relationship? We instinctively want perfection,
    and we grasp at it and fail without some extra-earthly power, as the atheist does.

    (This is why we do not cast perils before swine; When I speak of perfection you will only see again
    your atheist prejudices, my words will, most likely, not sway you to belief either, and as rude as this
    may seem, you are a swine until you believe and are delivered from the evil of this world.)

    As far as teeth, lost limbs, infirmities, birth defects, crippling accidents, the perception of ugly,
    these are all failings of this world, where there is no perfection as we righly imagine of heaven. Your
    question concerning identity (“will anybody stand out?”) is interesting, but what reason would you have
    that would establish this as a valid concept? The difficulty here is in associating all of your
    identity with this flesh in this world, where associating your identity in heaven is far more productive
    to the spirit living here on earth. Is this not better sounding than the death march atheists rely
    upon?

    (And, yes, some people are ugly; I know I can look terrible after two or three days of no sleep, when
    I get too busy.)

    The Apostles were given to judge the twelve tribes of Israel, not the rest of us. Some say that the
    wedding feast and the table to eat and drink at is figurative, but I say it is literal.

    2.The circumcision was an act of the flesh. What part of the flesh does not result in pain? Blood?
    Grotesque? The flesh is fallen, this is the only logical conclusion. For example, the atheist/feminist
    enjoys making films of birth deliveries, and they get put on A&E or Discovery, or some other network.
    But these are absolutely disgusting moments, for those of use that are sane and are not the father!
    I saw my own child birthed, and with a c-cection no less, and I faint and throw up in hospitals, but
    not when it was my own flesh being born, that was somehow different, either my love for the child’s
    mother, or my love for the child, or both. Yet, to see someone else is disgusting, I can not stop for
    a second on one of those programs. Of course, circumcision is a bloody and gory act, it is an act of
    this fallen flesh.

    There is nothing in this world which is, ultimately, good. Yet, we do have moments of goodness.

    3. Education plus this fact of not believing in God started in the late 1800’s, and reached critical mass
    in the 1900’s. Why is it that people considered educated before where more likely to believe in God?
    Your answer, I suspect, would be simple: Because God was at the center of education before the twentieth
    century. Atheists teach the children, its really quite simple, and your simpleton question prooves my
    point.

    4. Marriages are a pain, some of the time. So, marriage being done away with would be a good thing, right?
    Trying to get married, especially today with atheism ruling the world and most young men and women being
    womanizers and sluts, the task of picking a wife or husband is really a chore; And then comes the
    marriage in this bizarro-world culture we live in. Some really crazy and unproductive ideas are floating
    around and men and women both pick these up and try to implement them in their own marriages. Add to
    that the do-nothing life style of the vast majority of people in the industrialized world (i.e.
    socialism, working for governments, and all that) and you have a really difficult situation. As much
    joy as I get from a woman I love I would not mind doing away with the stress of worrying if she will
    be the next to go over to feminism and screw the whole thing up in my own life. Again, these are all
    questions concerning the flesh, and you yourself point out all their failings and idiosyncracies, which
    are all degress of misery. Heaven is perfect.

    As far as the wedding ceremony thing, you are absolutely correct, today’s marriage thingy is very much
    absurd. To begin to understand how it is incorrect today, think of all the crap that each marriage is
    now covering up: God said marry as virgins (both male and female) yet who is still a virgin these days?
    Not many, not many at all. So, the world needs a lot of pomp and circumstance to cover up their sure
    destiny in hell, so they can feel good presently.

    5. The entire world used to believe in God, it is only recenly that this has changed. (Yes, I know all the
    arguments concerning the Inca’s, the Druid’s, the American-Indians…) The rest of the your question is
    simply questioning free will, and this is undeniable, we all exibit free will.

    6. Many of the Jews did not believe in Jesus, that is why He was hung on the Cross and put to death.

    With that in mind, just what difference does it make now? People believe for a spiritual reason, and
    that is the only logical explanation. There would be no reason to follow after Jesus, even if we all
    believe that He is the Messiah, there must be some sort of spiritual effect. For example, I know full
    well that there are very intelligent people in the world, yet I do not follow their advice. On the other
    hand, I always feel it when I go against God. Never fails. There is a Holy Spirit with me, and He guides
    my heart.

    As far as any discrepencies you may think exist, there are only two that actually are quantitative
    discrepencies, the rest, which are what you cite, these are qualitative ideas, and they all reconcile
    if you first insist that God need be Perfect, and so His Scriptures Perfect. It is in this facet of
    theological discipline that the greatest insights to Christian life are found. Assume that the
    Scriptures are correct, in order to begin to understand them. You do the same when you study
    mathematics, you assume that your teacher is telling you the truth, and that the school books are
    written well, and you even overlook the odd typeo or two that are found each year in new books, so as
    to preserve mathematics in general. Why do you treat the Bible so differently? Because you are
    spiritually motivate against God; You are a pawn in the hands of the evil one.

    Consider the constant battle between the ultra conservative american and the rest of america: The
    ultra conservative insists that government should not pry at all in to the privacy of any citizen,
    where the rest say sometimes it is ok, for some greater good. Why not have faith in each citizen? This
    is the same as faith in God. You must let go of this world to find heaven, and only then will you be
    able to grasp this world.

    7. “What are you basing this opinion on” is another trick of the atheist, to try and remove the Scriptures
    from the conversation. The fact is, the atheist would know nothing of the past if it were not for the
    Scriptures. Where do the Israelies look when they look for the cisterns beneath the temple? They look
    where the Scriptures tell them to look, and they find what the Scriptures describe.

    So, as Pharaoh was not a believer (not being of one of the twelve tribes) and the age of the Gentiles
    had not yet come (the rest of the world did not believe in the God of the Hebrews until Jesus died)
    then it is impossible that Pharaoh could have relied upon powers from anyone except not-God. Not-God is
    satan, and is always satan. God is Perfect, Perfect is good; Imperfection leads to all pains, and pain
    is not good, satan is not good.

    (Those political and legal theories relying upon pain and pleasure, those are yours, right atheist?)

    8. Remove Santa Claus and the Tooth Fairy and all the other pagan (i.e. atheist) mythologies. Not true
    Christian is dealing in these. (No, I am not a Jehovah’s Witness.) These things in their present form
    parallel what else in our society? The rise of atheism, the emptying of the churches, no-fault divorce,
    abortion, et cetera. This is all evil.

    As far as children are concerned, you assert that religious schooling is child abuse, as it infuses a
    child without his knowing, as he is a child. Yet, you seek only another similar thing, in that you
    desire to intercept religious schooling, that is, you too want to control that same child’s development.

    At the same time, you appeal to a very lofty, very etheral idea: You imply that the child will develop
    without religious instruction. We have the present day, very atheist society, which does follow your
    advice very much, and we have child rapes, rapes of all kinds, murders and more murders, pornography,
    child pornography, divorce, abortion, teen pregnancy, teens giving up their babies to strangers, broken
    families on every block, political corruption, political incompitence, and all due to your hypothesis
    that children should not be morally educated, should not be told what to do nor when to do it, should
    not be held to any standard whatsoever, except for whatever is fashionable. You have already gotten
    your wish to remove religious education from the children of this nation, and for the whole world, so
    what are you complaining about? Just what is your question anyway?

    As far as Santa different from God, or Jesus, or the Holy Spirit, that is a question I should be asking
    of you! Everyone knows that Santa is make believe, yet still almost all people, when pressed, or when
    in a desperate situation admits that there is a God, somewhere, somehow.

    So why not be educated as to Whom He Is?

    9. This question is a bunch of typical ignorance, as far as I can tell at face value.

    On the other hand, your omission of the entire passage in 17:8 is non-sensical. You seem to assert that
    someone on earth will wonder just what happened to those people not found in the book of life. The
    passage is a mystery to us so far: ‘A beast that was, but is not,’ seemingly a contradiction, and it
    ascended out of the bottomless pit, and goes in to perdition. Then, you leave out the end of the passage
    and place a period where you have omitted even more text. You do the typical satanic thing, you cause
    one to look away from their own possible fate in hell. This is what the passage is describing, those
    that go after the beast, and then find themselves not written in the book of life, and then are lost
    trying to find that beast again, ‘that was, and is not, and yet is.’

    The passage is not, actually, a mystery. People will worship the beast, they will not be in the book
    of life because they worship the beast, and then they will loose even the worship of this beast, that
    is, their earthly god will disappear on them, and they will be left to wonder. This is the absense of
    God, and how it is, and how it will be.

    As far as the book of Revelation revealing something not heretofore known, well it is a book of
    revelation, right?

    10. Trying to create hatred for Jews is a bad thing. Why would you, a supposedly enlightened atheist, want
    to foster hatred?

    Shit on you as far as the rest of the question is concerned, you need to stop the hatred first, little
    boy.

    11. “Thou shalt surely kill him” is not in “The Ten Commandments” it is within the statutes. So, maybe you
    should, actually, read the Bible, as if you were, actually, literate.

    Jesus died on the Cross, therefore, there is no more need for killing. Either believe or go to hell.

    As far as your usual atheist rambling on at the end of this question, why sink to that childish level
    if you are so sure of your atheist ideals?

    12. The same-ol, same-ol appeal to children and their safety. No Christian believes that relatively
    innocent children are put in to hell, that is, if they die before they are aware enough to believe.
    You know this, so you mention a question as to when, exactly, is awareness established? You also know
    that this is a difficult question, and you do your best to be difficult (much like the five year old
    child you are so concerned with.) Some are aware at one age, some another, anyone knows that, including
    atheists.

    As far as the children of Mormons, simply consider the children of any one, it is no different. If you
    raise your child an atheist, he will, most likely, remain an atheist until he dies, and this will doom
    him to hell.

    This is not fair you say! It is fair, as you have access to a Bible, and you have heard enough of
    Christianity in your years that you try to fight against it. You have been given your chance to believe,
    though, a lot of criminals in prison have this same excuse, so you are in good company.

    13. Umm…soup is good food.

    Most of this is already asked in previous questions.

    You at least provide a new scenario (though, all scenarios are covered in the Bible, so ho-hum.) Some
    guy is an atheist, and he gets knocked stupid in a car wreck. He had his chance. (There are no death
    bed gurantees, aye?)

    14. (It so cute how you capitalize atheist, and lower case God. You really do show all the signs of an
    immature child.)

    These are already answered in previous question, you only come up with more scenarios.

    On this point, do you not see how obviously retarded your intellect is? You simply create more and more
    scenarios concerning the same central thesis. And, worst of all, this is how all children are taught
    in the atheist controlled schools, so I have to live with a world full of idiots that are swayed,
    again and again, to follow after bad ideas.

    Nevertheless, mental disorders are interesting in that they are caused by our fallen nature, we are not
    perfect since the fall in the Garden of Eden. I am only 99% sure that such defects are met with the
    same mercy as I assume God will show to children of innocence. Maybe there is a catch there, that some
    one takes drugs, or some other thing, and dooms a child to an inability to be saved.

    I say, however, that God will show His Mercy to these unfortunate individuals.

    15. You really need to read the Bible. You are such a child!

    A central concept to Christianity is the law written on the heart; Thusly, it is said that one that has
    the law written on his heart is the same as one whom hears the Gospel and believes.

    Now, those Amzonians were not necessarily the nicest people the world has ever seen. They had murderers,
    rapists, child molesters, theives, corrupt leaders, and every other sin we know of that causes someone
    pain. They did not have the law of God written on their hearts, and those people will surely be in hell.
    HOWEVER, if some of them did have the decency and kindness and charity of Jesus Christ, then they are
    already in heaven.

    Oh, and just another bunch of scenarios. Hey monkey, how about a new trick?

    16. More bad Bible reading…

    I was once driving down the road, in a strange place, and a little voice said to me, go right. So I
    did. The other road had a terrible accident where I would have been. (And that ain’t the only time that
    has happend.)

    Think I am mad? That’s ok, I’m going to heaven, one way or another.

    17. Why anything. Really, these are juvenile questions.

    You give your own answer, nutritional value. If one has water and the necessary minerals (magnesium,
    iron, b-complex, et cetera) then one will survive quite well. Manna from heaven was surely perfect.
    I tried coriander and I didn’t like it. Hmm…

    I was sitting on a porch, having a cigrette, after working all day, when I noticed all this stuff
    blowing around the concrete, collecting in the corners of the porch…

    18. Typical atheist association. If someone twists around the Gospel and the Way of God it is not God’s
    fault, it is the fault of those individuals that do this, and the fault of those around them that should
    have been able to preach the Gospel, but did not. Some people refuse the Gospel, even though it is
    preached to them well, I call these people atheists, and as such, I associate people that do not seek
    medical attention with atheism.

    19. Same as last question.

    20. Everything you ask here is pre-loaded opposite of the Scriptures. I suspect you are not only an atheist,
    but a satanist (as this is their way, to be opposite.)

    Adam and Eve were sent out to the world you and I see every day. Maybe you have tried to garden, as I
    have in the desert in southern california: Lots of rocks, lots of pointed plants to stick you. In other
    words, lots of sweat and blood, just like it says in the Bible. So, Adam and Eve were not brought out
    of a world bigger than ours, necessarily, but were brought out of a slice of paradise, and put here in
    this unruly scene we all live in today.

    Everything else you ask is about the evil in this fallen world. Hey, it hurts when you fall down, huh?

    (Or is that too obvious for you?)

    21. You are stuck in a battle with your adversary.

    22. Where did you hear that angels have wings?

    That should answer your question.

    23. Creation verses evolution question. Quasi Creation/evolution theories are on both sides. Evolution says
    dinosaurs first. Creation says first Adam, then the rest of history. I believe in Creation.

    Why? Materially, it is the only logical conclusion. There must be a Creator, and He must want something
    to do with His Creation, therefore, He has give us His Word. Spiritually, I have had contact with God’s
    Spirit, having believed, I now have signs to believe (that is, to believe even more.)

    24. The beanstalk was in Minnesota. Or maybe it was Iowa.

    Interesting that no evidence of these “giants” were never found. Could it be because their bones were
    used in pagan rituals? (You know how you atheists are when you start getting religious.)

    25. With this question I am now convinced that you are a satanist, and not just another atheist.

    They were impressed. (Read the Bible.)

    They did not know when Jesus would ascend, as in knowing when to tell people to gather and watch.
    (Pray to God for understanding.)

    They told you about Jesus. (And you have not even read the Bible.)

    I was once ripped off a few hundred dollars by some piece of junk dude; When I made enough money to
    consider that regained, I did not gloat to the thief, I really did not care if I ever saw him again.
    I was much happier to have my money back, and was busy with the business of that money regained, too
    busy to go looking for a thief. Besides that, I did not want to get ripped off again!

    Jesus’ mother was told. (Read the Bible.)

    Celebration?

    Ask Stephen about trying to Save as many Jews as possible. And ask James. And ask John. And ask…..

    All you do in this question is outright lie. Satanist.

    26. Sure, but why would He?

    Could it be that God would make a rock so heavy He can’t lift it because you smoked too much pot?

    27. Actually, only Christianity seems to have legitimate claims of miracles. The claims of the rest all
    fall apart upon inspection.

    28. I am not sure why an amputee miracle is not high on the list of miracles. But it is a good sign that
    you try and find something like this, as the other miracles must be doing well. Yet, I too now wonder
    why this miracle has not happend, or does not happen more often. Perhaps there is a reason that I do
    not yet know.

    Baby boy, baby girl, they are all my children, why would I care which it is? Only you atheists hate
    children so much as to choose one over the other.

    29. Another simple scientific test: Place a male and female monkey in a cage, and see if an evolved state
    emerges. Any volunteers? (I will arrange the other monkey, and provide for an entire weekend if want to
    say evolution took a long time.)

    You are most certainly with satan: You provoke God. (Read the Bible.)

    As you do not, have not, will not read the Bible, if you provoke God He will not answer your prayer.
    (The same thing happens when you provoke a friend, even your best friend. Abraham was a friend to God.)

    30. Today’s pagan, often called neo-pagans, or as you call yourself, the atheists, are of a more subtle
    paganism: They worship their selves. (That swine thing might really hurt you here.)

    31. So, you equivocate a tumor which will never be a human being with a fetus, which can only ever be a
    human being. Is this reasonable? Not according to Aristotle. (And he was a pagan just like you.)

    32. If there was evidence that the tree uprooted itself and marched away I would surely *have* to believe
    it. Yet, there is such evidence that Jesus died upon the Cross and you fight against it, and within
    your own mind you fight against it.

    33. I agree entirely. The world today calls itself Christian, and most often is nothing more than a rotten
    atheist.

    34. As soon as a child learns the words to say, the child begins to ask “From where?” and “How come?” and
    “Why?” so, knowledge of God is a part of our natural existence, and a Christian has His Word in his
    Bible.

    35. Great question for an atheist to answer. It would be very educational for the atheist that honestly
    tries to find the answer.

    Consider the Way of God, that two virgins be married, and stay married forever. How did a child ever
    get born at all? The Christians, Puritans that is, did not give a lot of sexual education to their
    children; Neither does any Christian parent, its just not done, its just not necessary. All the goods
    are packaged for enjoyment, which is packaging for procreation.

    To be terribly graphic, as soon as knowledge was attained by Adam, we can be sure he began to have
    feelings for Eve. She did hide her nakedness, right? The guy was probably all over her!

    So, just where do we get the ideas to accomplish the act? Spirit.

    Bah! You say. Where did you get the ideas to accomplish the act of feeding when you were first born?
    Its actually quite a complex process.

    36. Are these the questions you give to your children when you raise them to be satanists? They are so
    meaningfully opposite…

    There was no pain before knowledge, there was perfection.

    Damn it, boy! At least see the obvious! You dunce! If Eve had not had children, how could she have ever
    known any pain of child birth? Pain receptors? What an idiot you are.

    37. If God destroyed the world with a flood, why did He save the Jews? Mercy. And a longing to be worshiped
    by His Creation. And He gets what He Wants, except from you.

    38. It seems you finally tired yourself out asking the same question over and over again. Night, night,
    little boy.

  55. Paul,

    There are many translations of the bible that refer to dragons. YOU prefer one that decided to use a different word (serpent, whale, sea monster, jackal), as dragons are clearly fictional. That’s your choice. But your insistence that the translation you adhere to is more accurate is just not true. It is just another translation. One of many. All subject to the biased motivation of the translator(s). I address this in more detail in my most recent response on my main page.

    On the topic of Giants: First, most sources agree that a cubit in the Bible was equal to 21.8 inches, which would make Goliath closer to eleven feet but then the whole unit of measurment is one of the LEAST reliable aspects of the bible so I will gladly concede to your nine and a half feet. Nevertheless, every mention of Giants in the bible suggests the mythological ‘race’ of giants, not a birth defect shared by a few.

    And what about this:

    I Chronicles 20:6. And yet again there was war at Gath, where was a man of great stature, whose fingers and toes were four and twenty, six on each hand, and six on each foot and he also was the son of the giant.

    As to why I didn’t address your personal testimony that you have had conversations (as in back and forth) with your god is I felt I was being baited. I, of course, don’t believe for a second that you had a conversation with God, just as I don’t think any worshiper of any of the thousands and thousands of gods mankind has invented has ever had a conversation with THEIR god. Are you really suggesting that all of these people were talking with a demon? And for every example or proof that your chat with your god supplied some sort of real world evidentiary result there are a thousand similar examples from those who worship(ed) a different ‘false’ god. And I assure you, Paul, if your psychologist wife was an Atheist (or even worshiped a different god), she would definitely be concerned if you were to inform her that you were having conversations with your god, the same as if you had said you were talking with your vacuum or claimed to be hearing Satan’s voice. And, no, I don’t believe you might have ESP instead. There is no such thing as ESP either.

    The sex between Adam and Eve question was asked because I am curious as to what believer’s believe and why. You may find the question (or answer) to be silly and pointless but it was simply something that came to me while reviewing the story and just reviewing hackjaws response to the same question reveals that this fellow Christian would disagree with your interpretation of what occurred. I think hackjaws would find your suggestion that Adam and Eve had sex in the garden to be quite offensive. I’m not suggesting that either of you is wrong, I just find it interesting to read all the different interpretations that Christians have of the same passage/story. So thank you for at least giving an answer even if you thought it was a dumb thing for me to contemplate. Hackjaws also disagrees with you on the issue of Eve and whether or not she felt pain (AKA sorrow) before the fall. And a quick FYI, pain receptors don’t exist as much to PREVENT injury but to INFORM us of our injuries. Hackjaws has a great many interesting answers to my silly questions, many of which disagree with yours (and many other Christians I’d imagine) and he is just as authoritative and dismissive as you. The ONE thing all Christians seem to agree on is that they all have the answers. If only they could all agree ON the answers, now that would be something.

    And let me make something clear, telling me to do some research to get my answers is absurd (you too hackjaws). I’m asking Christians these questions to receive THEIR answers. I want to hear (read) all the different explanations that I will inevitably receive for each question. I’m looking to understand all the different Christian perspectives. I’m intrigued by the fact that a hundred different Christians can answer the same question a hundred different ways. If I read one of the books you suggest I will learn ONE person’s perspective, which is good, but I prefer this format so I have the opportunity to read the uncensored, un-PC answers of many different Christians. Some are polite, courteous and gracious (Jenn, OffensiveChristian, Rev. Jesse, Mike, bitterhermit (MysticWino)) and others are condescending, insulting and boorish (Sirius, hackjaws and yourself). I welcome them all. I have a thick skin. I believe you must to be an Atheist. I will continue to ask whatever questions that occur to me, whether they be silly or ‘deep’. Whether or not someone will be willing to take the time to answer is entirely up to them.

    Thank you for your comments.

    DoubtingThomas

  56. Ha!

    Am I merely condescending? or do I also get to be insulting and boorish? [nice word usage, btw]

    Oddly, you forgot disgusted.

    There is NOTHING on your site to prove that God does not exist. Your blog is simply a rejection of Christianity. You have posted quotes by other men [yawn] and an endless string of questions [most of which, as hackjaws pointed out, are questions we could find the answer to in your typical Sunday school class].

    Not once have you offered YOUR reasons [if you have any] for rejcting Christianity [which you’ve obviously done] nor your reasons for going the extra step of rejecting the very idea of a God [which makes you an idiot, especially if the simple questions [and mockeries posing as questions] you offer are to be taken as your reasons.

    I think you’re an intellectual fraud.

    As for giants, do you watch professional wrestling. Those guys are huge. As are a good number of linebackers. Don’t you think interbreeding [with us regular joes and janes] would have shortened the stock to its present-day height.

    And dragons… Every society and culture across the globe has legends of dragons. Ever ask yourself why?

    Probably not. You’re too busy denying things because you’ve never seen them. Yet you believe in atoms, don’t you? And the wind right?

    rational atheist is an oxymoron.

    siriusly disgusted,
    Sirius Knott

  57. And you will find that Christians generally disagree on the nits, the minor issues.

    This, btw, is what we call grey area, which the Bible allows for.

    Paul gave the example of meat sacrificed to idols. Idolatry was clearly forbidden. But what about meat sold at the market that had previously been sacrificed to idols. Some Christians thought that no one should eat meat sacrificed to idols because of the association with idolatry. Other said, as long we give thanks to God for it, we should be able to eat it; after all, idols are only pieces of stone or wood.

    Pauls answer was for each Christian to make up his own mind about it, but to neither condemn the other for a different decision nor put a stumbling block in the way of the brother who couldn’t allow it. Don’t judge. Don’t flaunt it. But make up your own mindabout it.

    Biblical grey area.

    Confined to nits. Little issues. Side issues. Rabbit trails. Trivia.

    I take it you’ve decided to go with the whole “Well, even Christians disagree about it, so how could it be true” tack. I hope not. Because you’ll be forgetting that we wholeheartedly agree on the major points. You’ll also be forgetting that the Bible does allow for personal convictions and opinions on some things. most importantly, you’d be forgetting that a multitude of claims does not disallow one claim from being truth.

    –Sirius Knott

  58. hackjaws Says:

    I wonder if you simply follow after a mere habit, and continually try to disprove God. Much of this conversation is beyond a survey, trying to describe a logic that models God is not finding God, or even trying to find God.

    Yet, I like your survey, as the descripancies between Christians on sometimes key topics is absurd, and gives the impression that there is doubt within Perfect God, where there is only doubt within our own imperfect selves. Putting Christians to these atheist/scientific demands over the last 150 years has been fantastic for those that still believe.

  59. Poor FOOL to believe that in the essense of a soul that you have no likeness within may you come to understand what it is.You are definately the maker of your own life you are a reversable fool to think that times up and your out, may you die with your disease,get out of the grace of god for you have no purpose to believe in anything.Do you believe in yourself ? for you are an illlusion then and nothing will separate you from the inside you are a lie you have no worth to god as any person can tell you, take in what you give out stand among the evil that you live, I pray that the god you dont believe in rip the life from your soul and fill you with the dread of hopelessness that you are attracted too, the very spirit of god is within your soul but you fail to realize this, So get out of yourself you perishable fool ! GOD

  60. God,

    Thank you for visiting my site. I hope it’s ok if I refer to you simply as God. You see mankind has invented and worshiped thousands upon thousands of gods over the years and you neglected to specify which one you were. I suppose you could be Ganesa, or Baal, or Ra, or Krishna, or Zeus, or Allah, or ANY of the others but seeing as you chose to leave a comment on a post I specifically directed toward Christians, I will assume you are their God. So I will just call you God, unless you prefer YHWH, or Yahweh, or Yahuahshua, or Elohim, or Adonai, or Jehovah, or El Shaddai? I find it strange that you call yourself God but refer to yourself in your comment as god (smaller case). Most Christians take great offense at this, how nice it is to learn that God himself doesn’t think it’s a very big deal. You said – “I pray that the god you dont believe in rip the life from your soul and fill you with the dread of hopelessness.” I find it odd for a god to pray to himself and it seems a little mean, and certainly not very Christian, for anyone to pray for such a thing. However, if you reviewed this site you probably know what a low opinion I have of you, so I wasn’t surprised by your words. They fit perfectly with the words that fill your holy book. Now I understand you think I’m a fool, or is it FOOL, for not choosing you among all the other gods to acknowledge as legitimate and worthy of worship but even in my many years of regular Church attendance and Christian Schooling I saw no evidence of your existence. It’s true that many of my naïve brethren need nothing more than the words of their parents, or an oil stain on a window, or an oddly burnt piece of toast, or an unsubstantiated claim to assure them that you are the real deal, but I must confess I require more. But don’t be jealous, I don’t worship any of those other gods either. Don’t get me wrong, I truly wish you were real. I wish ANY god were real. Right at this moment somewhere in the world an innocent child is being raped, somewhere in the world an innocent child is being murdered, somewhere in the world an innocent child is being beaten, somewhere in the world an innocent child is being verbally abused, somewhere in the world an innocent child is being neglected, somewhere in the world an innocent child is starving to death, somewhere in the world an innocent child is being handed a gun and being told to shoot, somewhere in the world an innocent child is being born to a mother who doesn’t want him, somewhere in the world an innocent child is being eaten alive by cancer, somewhere in the world an innocent child is suffering. Every moment of every day a child is suffering. If only just ONE of the thousands and thousands of gods mankind has created were real and would help these children. But they aren’t and they don’t. It is a sad and simple fact that more suffering has been caused by the believers of gods than has been prevented. How terrible it would be if you WERE real and had to be judged by your worshiper’s actions and YOUR inaction. I really must ask, what is more horrible; the suggestion that there is no god, OR, considering the history and current state of the world, the idea that there is and he is either impotent, incompetent or indifferent? I wonder, God, are all people who doubt the existence of a god fools? Were those who doubted the reality of Baal fools? How about those who refused to worship Zeus? Are people only fools if they doubt the Christian god? Can someone be a Christian and also be a fool? Seeing that you refuse to answer any of the questions above or any of the others on this site and your worshipers seem only capable of reciting dogma and assertive opinion, I imagine I won’t be receiving any answers to these questions either.

    But thanks for stopping by. Say hi to Santa and the Easter Bunny for me.

    DoubtingThomas

  61. I really have not read all the comments above, I am from a pagan kind of religion and the whole concept of belief here puzzles me.
    People who do not believe are doomed to go to hell, why?
    Belief is something that you can not voluntarily have or not have. I can not get myself to believe that there is god just because someone wrote about it. And just because I can not get myself to believe it, God will punish me to hell, to burn in hell fire.
    This is emotional blackmail that God is resorting to.
    Its like in some of the movies here, there are guys who threaten to jump off the roof until the girl also professes love for him. Love, like belief can not be voluntarily generated.
    This sort of a unforgiving, absolutist God is the very antithesis of what God should be in modern times. God is a concept that we look up to, but with this sort of philosophy, I am most motivated to look for God else where, like in the Sun or the Moon, even if symbolically.

  62. It is interesting how the Christian religion is one of the few that punishes all of mankind, regardless of their knowledge of this god. The idea that all who were and are ignorant of the Christian god are destined for hell is abhorrent. Why would you want to worship such a being? I’m sorry, but any god whose main message is spend all your time worshiping me or burn in hell is not someone I want to be associating with.

    Thanks for stopping by, Assman.

    DoubtingThomas

  63. check this out…

    this is mine…

  64. Evening, colored colored, specially from the major news corperations with the big slants to the left or right. Did you see last nights O’Rielly factor? haha, that was rediculous! Sorry, I am rambling on again. Have a Great day!

  65. greetings
    i’m so glad that i found this page. that topic was so nice. thanks again i bookmarked this article.
    are you going to write similar posts?

  66. True faith comes from knowledge. Find everything you need to know about bible verse of the day…

    […]CHRISTIANS – An Atheist Is Seeking Answers. Can You Supply Any? « Doubting Thomas' Weblog[…]…

  67. gulkana river…

    […]CHRISTIANS – An Atheist Is Seeking Answers. Can You Supply Any? « Doubting Thomas' Weblog[…]…

  68. parody of cialis here…

    […]CHRISTIANS – An Atheist Is Seeking Answers. Can You Supply Any? « Doubting Thomas' Weblog[…]…

  69. efficacy of transdermal prednisone in cats click here…

    […]CHRISTIANS – An Atheist Is Seeking Answers. Can You Supply Any? « Doubting Thomas' Weblog[…]…

  70. GhostLink…

    […]CHRISTIANS – An Atheist Is Seeking Answers. Can You Supply Any? « Doubting Thomas' Weblog[…]…

  71. compare product…

    […]CHRISTIANS – An Atheist Is Seeking Answers. Can You Supply Any? « Doubting Thomas' Weblog[…]…

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: