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3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
#1
3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
As someone who spent over 25 years practicing the Christian faith, and who has since found greater liberty and personal fulfillment outside of that practice, I would like to encourage all Christians to consider some of the more compelling reasons to question your faith. Here are a few:

#1. Lack of Validity.

Christianity fails to substantiate even the most basic of it’s claims, such as the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. But even more compelling is the fact that the story of Jesus is part of a collection of books filled with scientific impossibilities, contradictions, and bogus history.

Christopher Hitchens once said, “The bible makes magnificent claims, we should require magnificent proof.”

Now, of course, Christians will counter that by saying, “God must leave plenty of room for faith”. There are, however, two fundamental problems with that perspective:

(a) It leaves far too much room for error. If faith is the primary driving force behind a person’s belief, what is to stop them from believing in any number of other religious ideas or practices? Faith without first having good reason is meaningless.

(b) According to the Bible, faith is not the means by which god has inspired his most important followers:

Moses, for example was shown a burning bush, which actually spoke to him and very specifically declared:

"Don't come any closer, take off your sandals because you are in the presence of God. I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob."

Even at that, Moses still had his doubts, so he was given even more undeniable evidence, as well as the power to demonstrate his god ordained purpose to others. (Exodus Chapter 3)

Also, The Apostle Paul, a man initially portrayed in scripture as a persecutor of Christians, was shown a brilliant light, physically knocked to the ground, and was then given very specific instructions from an audible voice. Further more, he was blinded and then given his sight back. (Acts 9:3-9)

And there are literally dozens upon dozens of other examples of characters in the Bible being inspired to serve god as the result of some supernatural event that was clearly a message from god.

#2. Immorality.

Dr. William Lane Craig, a well known Christian apologist, loves, in his defense of theism, to claim that, without god, there is no objective morality. I happen to disagree with that, and I’ll expand here:

If, by “Objective Morality”, it is the Christian position that morality has a permanently fixed set of unalterable standards, then it my position that such a thing does not exist with or without god.

However, if “Objective Morality” is merely meant to point to the pursuit of accomplishing a logical and beneficial objective, then I would argue that the only sensible standard of morality is that of the preservation, success, and further evolution of human kind. Within that frame work, human decency, the betterment and quality of human life, and environmental, political, and social issues have the very best chance of being effectively resolved and productively furthered.

In contrast, Christianity offers no practical solution for the survival and success of man kind, and instead trivializes human life while promoting completely unstubstantiated claims of an eternal spiritual existence beyond the grave.

Luke 17:33
Whoever tries to keep their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life will preserve it.

And this same lack of regard for human life and human decency is repeated and illustrated all throughout the Bible.

With that in mind, is it any wonder why Christians throughout history have committed so many terrible atrocities? Once you strip a human being of his regard for human life (especially his own) with promises of eternal and spiritual prosperity, you create a potentially homicidal maniac that will do anything in the name of god.

#3. Heaven’s Hell.

Even If you can look past the counter-productive moral implications, and the lack of any compelling evidence to support the claims of Christianity, you still have to face the terrible reality of what it claims will be the ultimate outcome of it's followers. Observe:

Revalation 5:13
Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing: "To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!"

Revalation 22:4-5:
No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads.

Matthew 22:30
At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven.

The eternal life that a Christian is working toward and hoping for, according to scripture, is one of constant praise, worship, and slavery (Rom 6:22) of an extremely boring and self-centered egomaniac that intends to strip his servants of any kind of meaningful free will or independent interest.

I’m not sure which is the more wishful thinking: that the heaven of the bible exists at all, or that it's actually a place worth going to.
[Image: earthp.jpg]
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#2
RE: 3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
(March 27, 2013 at 7:19 am)smax Wrote: Now, of course, Christians will counter that by saying, “God must leave plenty of room for faith”. There are, however, two fundamental problems with that perspective:

I think it's more like:

(a) It's illogical.

(b) It's stupid.
"Well, evolution is a theory. It is also a fact. And facts and theories are different things, not rungs in a hierarchy of increasing certainty. Facts are the world's data. Theories are structures of ideas that explain and interpret facts. Facts don't go away when scientists debate rival theories to explain them. Einstein's theory of gravitation replaced Newton's in this century, but apples didn't suspend themselves in midair, pending the outcome. And humans evolved from ape- like ancestors whether they did so by Darwin's proposed mechanism or by some other yet to be discovered."

-Stephen Jay Gould
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#3
RE: 3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
Most Christian's I've asked about point number 3 say that apparently, being in God's grace is supposed to make you ecstatic and content forever and ever.

So in addition to being enslaved we're also going to be drugged and sedated.

Lovely.
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#4
RE: 3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
(March 27, 2013 at 7:19 am)smax Wrote: Once you strip a human being of his regard for human life (especially his own) with promises of eternal and spiritual prosperity, you create a potentially homicidal maniac that will do anything in the name of god.

QFT
Even if the open windows of science at first make us shiver after the cozy indoor warmth of traditional humanizing myths, in the end the fresh air brings vigor, and the great spaces have a splendor of their own - Bertrand Russell
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#5
RE: 3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
OOh good I was in the mood for some "Smax" talk this morning.
(March 27, 2013 at 7:19 am)smax Wrote: As someone who spent over 25 years practicing the Christian faith, and who has since found greater liberty and personal fulfillment outside of that practice, I would like to encourage all Christians to consider some of the more compelling reasons to question your faith. Here are a few:

#1. Lack of Validity.

Christianity fails to substantiate even the most basic of it’s claims, such as the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. But even more compelling is the fact that the story of Jesus is part of a collection of books filled with scientific impossibilities, contradictions, and bogus history.

Christopher Hitchens once said, “The bible makes magnificent claims, we should require magnificent proof.”

Now, of course, Christians will counter that by saying, “God must leave plenty of room for faith”.
Ah, no. God provides proof for all who simply Ask, Seek and Knock as out lined in Luke 11. If C.Hitch, you or anyone else did not get the proof Moses or Paul got it is because none of you A/S/K as described in luke 11.


Quote:#2. Immorality.

Dr. William Lane Craig, a well known Christian apologist, loves, in his defense of theism, to claim that, without god, there is no objective morality. I happen to disagree with that, and I’ll expand here:

If, by “Objective Morality”, it is the Christian position that morality has a permanently fixed set of unalterable standards, then it my position that such a thing does not exist with or without god.

However, if “Objective Morality” is merely meant to point to the pursuit of accomplishing a logical and beneficial objective, then I would argue that the only sensible standard of morality is that of the preservation, success, and further evolution of human kind. Within that frame work, human decency, the betterment and quality of human life, and environmental, political, and social issues have the very best chance of being effectively resolved and productively furthered.

In contrast, Christianity offers no practical solution for the survival and success of man kind, and instead trivializes human life while promoting completely unstubstantiated claims of an eternal spiritual existence beyond the grave.

Luke 17:33
Whoever tries to keep their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life will preserve it.

And this same lack of regard for human life and human decency is repeated and illustrated all throughout the Bible.

With that in mind, is it any wonder why Christians throughout history have committed so many terrible atrocities? Once you strip a human being of his regard for human life (especially his own) with promises of eternal and spiritual prosperity, you create a potentially homicidal maniac that will do anything in the name of god.
Here I must point out morality is not the absolute standard you believe it to be. Morality is man's standard, not God's. God's standard is absolute righteousness, which by it's nature will be different from man's ideas of morality. For man knew from the exit of the Garden he could not maintain God's standard, so he made his own personal version of righteousness so it may serve us and our own wants and what we think should be right. The pharisees took this 'morality' to the extreme and 'canoized' their morality into jewish law, but even so Christ rightly identified this 'morality' for what it was. A righteousness grounded in one's self. Or "Self Righteousness." So again, your 'morality' or Self righteousness will dictate that God's righteousness is lacking and must be deemed 'immoral' if you take allow it to come to it's logical conclusion. Which is why the Pharisees had Christ killed. (Because they literally found Him to be Immoral.)


Quote:#3. Heaven’s Hell.

Even If you can look past the counter-productive moral implications, and the lack of any compelling evidence to support the claims of Christianity, you still have to face the terrible reality of what it claims will be the ultimate outcome of it's followers. Observe:

Revalation 5:13
Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing: "To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!"

Revalation 22:4-5:
No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads.

Matthew 22:30
At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven.

The eternal life that a Christian is working toward and hoping for, according to scripture, is one of constant praise, worship, and slavery (Rom 6:22) of an extremely boring and self-centered egomaniac that intends to strip his servants of any kind of meaningful free will or independent interest.

I’m not sure which is the more wishful thinking: that the heaven of the bible exists at all, or that it's actually a place worth going to.
Which is the very reason we have been put here on this earth. To make that desision. Is Heaven worthy more over is the idea of staying with God in Heaven for eternity what we want to do?

Oh, and we do not need reasons to question our faith. We have a command to do so in 1Thess 5:21 "Question all things and hold on to what is good." This does not mean just question the questionable, but also question the foundational.
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#6
RE: 3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
(March 27, 2013 at 11:07 am)Drich Wrote: Ah, no. God provides proof for all who simply Ask, Seek and Knock as out lined in Luke 11. If C.Hitch, you or anyone else did not get the proof Moses or Paul got it is because none of you A/S/K as described in luke 11.

Please share with everyone the undeniable proof god provided you?

Quote:Here I must point out morality is not the absolute standard you believe it to be. Morality is man's standard, not God's. God's standard is absolute righteousness, which by it's nature will be different from man's ideas of morality. For man knew from the exit of the Garden he could not maintain God's standard, so he made his own personal version of righteousness so it may serve us and our own wants and what we think should be right. The pharisees took this 'morality' to the extreme and 'canoized' their morality into jewish law, but even so Christ rightly identified this 'morality' for what it was. A righteousness grounded in one's self. Or "Self Righteousness." So again, your 'morality' or Self righteousness will dictate that God's righteousness is lacking and must be deemed 'immoral' if you take allow it to come to it's logical conclusion. Which is why the Pharisees had Christ killed. (Because they literally found Him to be Immoral.)

Nothing you posted here refutes the point I am making about morality, which is simply that human beings should base their morality on the survival, success, betterment, and mutual benefit of their fellow human beings and the human race in general.

Your blind willingness to accept a standard of morality that is based on an imaginary deity is actually counter-productivity to your very real and verifiable existence as a human being.

Quote:Which is the very reason we have been put here on this earth. To make that desision. Is Heaven worthy more over is the idea of staying with God in Heaven for eternity what we want to do?

In no way was my 3rd point any concession about the existence of such a place. I was merely pointing out that what is being described in the Bible as heaven, is not something that would appeal to any person interested in things like liberty, diversity, and meaningful interaction.

If being a mindless drone, who's only purpose is to constantly and infinitely kiss some serious ass, appeals to you, more power to you. Or, maybe I should say less power to you.

Quote:Oh, and we do not need reasons to question our faith. We have a command to do so in 1Thess 5:21 "Question all things and hold on to what is good." This does not mean just question the questionable, but also question the foundational.

That's not what it means at all, not even close. That verse was specifically addressing prophecy, which you would know if you had read the verse that preceeded it:

1 Thes 5:20
Do not treat prophecies with contempt

That verse is not asking you to question your faith. But, as a fellow human being, I am.
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#7
RE: 3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
Quote:Oh, and we do not need reasons to question our faith. We have a command to do so in 1Thess 5:21 "Question all things and hold on to what is good." This does not mean just question the questionable, but also question the foundational.


It is not apparent that you ever asked a question in your whole life, Drippy.
Reply
#8
RE: 3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
Drich Wrote:Ah, no. God provides proof for all who simply Ask, Seek and Knock as out lined in Luke 11. If C.Hitch, you or anyone else did not get the proof Moses or Paul got it is because none of you A/S/K as described in luke 11.

When will you quit smearing the forum with this nonsense? We've called you out on this particular thing time and time again. The believer fulfills their own prayers in accordance to how desperate they are to "hear from God".
"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it" ~ Aristotle
Reply
#9
RE: 3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
(March 27, 2013 at 7:19 am)smax Wrote: As someone who spent over 25 years practicing the Christian faith, and who has since found greater liberty and personal fulfillment outside of that practice, I would like to encourage all Christians to consider some of the more compelling reasons to question your faith. Here are a few:

#1. Lack of Validity.

Christianity fails to substantiate even the most basic of it’s claims, such as the life, death, and resurrection of Christ. But even more compelling is the fact that the story of Jesus is part of a collection of books filled with scientific impossibilities, contradictions, and bogus history.

Christopher Hitchens once said, “The bible makes magnificent claims, we should require magnificent proof.”

Now, of course, Christians will counter that by saying, “God must leave plenty of room for faith”. There are, however, two fundamental problems with that perspective:

(a) It leaves far too much room for error. If faith is the primary driving force behind a person’s belief, what is to stop them from believing in any number of other religious ideas or practices? Faith without first having good reason is meaningless.

(b) According to the Bible, faith is not the means by which god has inspired his most important followers:

Moses, for example was shown a burning bush, which actually spoke to him and very specifically declared:

"Don't come any closer, take off your sandals because you are in the presence of God. I am the God of your father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob."

Even at that, Moses still had his doubts, so he was given even more undeniable evidence, as well as the power to demonstrate his god ordained purpose to others. (Exodus Chapter 3)

Also, The Apostle Paul, a man initially portrayed in scripture as a persecutor of Christians, was shown a brilliant light, physically knocked to the ground, and was then given very specific instructions from an audible voice. Further more, he was blinded and then given his sight back. (Acts 9:3-9)

And there are literally dozens upon dozens of other examples of characters in the Bible being inspired to serve god as the result of some supernatural event that was clearly a message from god.

#2. Immorality.

Dr. William Lane Craig, a well known Christian apologist, loves, in his defense of theism, to claim that, without god, there is no objective morality. I happen to disagree with that, and I’ll expand here:

If, by “Objective Morality”, it is the Christian position that morality has a permanently fixed set of unalterable standards, then it my position that such a thing does not exist with or without god.

However, if “Objective Morality” is merely meant to point to the pursuit of accomplishing a logical and beneficial objective, then I would argue that the only sensible standard of morality is that of the preservation, success, and further evolution of human kind. Within that frame work, human decency, the betterment and quality of human life, and environmental, political, and social issues have the very best chance of being effectively resolved and productively furthered.

In contrast, Christianity offers no practical solution for the survival and success of man kind, and instead trivializes human life while promoting completely unstubstantiated claims of an eternal spiritual existence beyond the grave.

Luke 17:33
Whoever tries to keep their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life will preserve it.

And this same lack of regard for human life and human decency is repeated and illustrated all throughout the Bible.

With that in mind, is it any wonder why Christians throughout history have committed so many terrible atrocities? Once you strip a human being of his regard for human life (especially his own) with promises of eternal and spiritual prosperity, you create a potentially homicidal maniac that will do anything in the name of god.

#3. Heaven’s Hell.

Even If you can look past the counter-productive moral implications, and the lack of any compelling evidence to support the claims of Christianity, you still have to face the terrible reality of what it claims will be the ultimate outcome of it's followers. Observe:

Revalation 5:13
Then I heard every creature in heaven and on earth and under the earth and on the sea, and all that is in them, singing: "To him who sits on the throne and to the Lamb be praise and honor and glory and power, for ever and ever!"

Revalation 22:4-5:
No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads.

Matthew 22:30
At the resurrection people will neither marry nor be given in marriage; they will be like the angels in heaven.

The eternal life that a Christian is working toward and hoping for, according to scripture, is one of constant praise, worship, and slavery (Rom 6:22) of an extremely boring and self-centered egomaniac that intends to strip his servants of any kind of meaningful free will or independent interest.

I’m not sure which is the more wishful thinking: that the heaven of the bible exists at all, or that it's actually a place worth going to.

my, my
why are you only agnostic?
objective morality?
objective morality is Yahweh does what He wants.
its part of the job description
"This gospel of the kingdom shall be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.
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#10
RE: 3 reasons for Christians to start questionng their faith
junkyardboy Wrote:objective morality is Yahweh does what He wants.
its part of the job description

Which seemed to be a projection of the culture of the barbaric tribes that worshipped him. Not suss at all.
"It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it" ~ Aristotle
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