This episode is part of my podcast series DEAR ATHEIST… If you prefer, LISTEN NOW.
Eating from the tree of knowledge of good and evil has made man so wise! Now we know good and evil, we can judge God. In fact, we are so enlightened now that, we are wiser than God, and beyond judgement ourselves.
“How can a God be worthy of worship when He commands His holy people to kill innocent children and animals, and annihilate whole civilizations?” they ask. “How could He condone slavery, when we were loving enough to condemn it?!”
“If there is such a God, He is wicked and we should all refuse to worship Him. If judgement day comes, we’ll just hide it out. He will be so embarrassed when nobody bothers to show up!” they mock. Are you on board?
The whole premise of the atheist’s unbelief is built on the idea that they are wiser than God. Not only wiser, but kinder and more just too. If they were given the job, they’d solve all the world’s problems before you can say “Boo!” The philosophy is built on arrogance, pride and foolishness, which is itself, its own punishment, ironically.
Let him that thinks he stands take heed, lest he falls. (1 Cor 10:12)
The Bible says in the book of Revelations that when the day of reckoning comes, men will beg the rocks, hills and mountains to fall on them, as they seek to hide from the glory and judgment of God (Rev 6:16). So, if you want to join that camp, believe the lie!
The fool says in heart, “there is no God!” (Psa 14:1)
We’ve run ahead with the little knowledge we were given and believed we know it all! But what you have in your hand is sand from a massive ocean of Wisdom! God is the possessor of all wisdom. The Book of Proverbs refers to the Spirit of God as Wisdom (Prov 1:20).
The fear of God is the beginning of wisdom. (Psa 111:10)
Without the fear of God, you cannot be wise! You see one side of a diamond, and you conclude that it’s a triangle, because your one-dimensional mind cannot comprehend a three-dimensional concept, or even four-dimensional. As a result, you cannot make a righteousness judgment. You can’t even present a reasonable argument or ask the correct question to get the answer you seek.
God opposes the proud and gives grace the humble. (Jam 4:6)
I cannot tell you why God does things that seem unjust to you, because you cannot understand until you first humble yourself and confess that there is a God, who deserves your reverence. When you have done that, then your foolishness will subside long enough for you to start on the journey of wisdom – which begins with the fear of God.
You say He is wicked, He says He is gracious! The fact that you have the breathe to speak and accuse your Creator, and He hasn’t struck you down suddenly with lightening, is evidence of His grace. The fact that you have a mouth and a voice, and a mind that is uniquely your own, which is able to comprehend and assess many things, yet you use your reasoning to try to disprove or discredit your Creator, and He hasn’t struck you and made you dumb and deaf and blind, is evidence that He is gracious.
If He were to sift your breath from you suddenly for your arrogance and insubordination, He would be well within His rights. He doesn’t owe you one second of time. Everyday you arise from your bed is a gift you can never repay. And believe me, He doesn’t need your worship! He deserves it. If He wanted, He could raise up stones in your place to worship Him.
Give honour to whom honour is due. (Rom 13:7)
The analogy of God as a parent who seeks endless expressions of gratitude from his children is flawed. What God demands is respect and trust, no less than we ought to give our earthly parents. When we’re humble, He needn’t force us to be grateful… Gratitude flows naturally from humility.
He has been so loving and gracious to you and I. But He is also a just God, who is bound to reward us for our crimes. Don’t let your allotted time run out before you humble yourself before Him. Then you shall enter His rest, and will learn true wisdom. Wisdom that the world can never teach you.
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Categories: Critical Thinking, Dear Atheist, The Latest, True Religion
Reblogged this on Talmidimblogging.
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Blessings! Much appreciated.
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Bless you and my pleasure!
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Thanks! The discussions ongoing at The Isaiah 53:5 Project are inspiring me to write more than ever. I normally write to edify believers, but thank God I can write to appeal to those who don’t believe.
I appreciate the encouragement!
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My book says killing people is good because my book says killing people is good.
Circular reasoning at its best.
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There is no circular reasoning here. If your point is that I’m trying to use a Bible you don’t believe in to convince you of a God you don’t believe in, then I accept that fact. I have to use the Bible because you have rejected the reason and the conscience and naturally evidences God has used to relate and reveal Himself to you.
If you’re expecting to be convinced by signs and wonders – just for you, then you might end up waiting until the day He WOWs everyone to their knees with His splendour.
Again, I will quote by Bible (which as a tool has been powerful in converting many an atheist before you): “Blessed are they who believe without seeing me.” (John 20:29).
God bless you.
“There is no circular reasoning here. If your point is that I’m trying to use a Bible you don’t believe in to convince you of a God you don’t believe in, then I accept that fact.”
Clearly you either didn’t understand my original comment or I was terribly unclear, since I didn’t mention anything you just said.
I said you’re excusing violence, genocide, infanticide, rape etc (all of which you can find in the bible) by saying your book says it’s okay. Why is it okay? Your book says so and so on. That’s circular reasoning.
“I have to use the Bible because you have rejected the reason and the conscience and naturally evidences God has used to relate and reveal Himself to you. ”
What evidences are you referring to?
“just for you, then you might end up waiting until the day He WOWs everyone to their knees with His splendour. ”
Okay, I’ll join the line with the rest of the people waiting 2000 years.
“Again, I will quote by Bible (which as a tool has been powerful in converting many an atheist before you)”
I’ve read your bible. No need to quote any more from it. I’ve read it several times and used to be a Christian. I’d prefer it if you used your own words and think for yourself, rather than continually spew words from a book I probably know better than you.
“God bless you.”
Please don’t be condescending or use your passive aggressiveness on me. If you have something to say, just say it.
I’ve said all I have to say. I’ve used plenty of my own words too.
You say I’m passive aggressive, what do you call your response? I think it’s quite aggressive and emotional.
Rape is bad. Murder is bad. Slavery is bad. War is bad. God is just.
In America, where people are killed by the State, do you agree that those killings are justified? Where they declare war for oil and greed and murder millions of people they don’t know, do you support? Where they permit the destruction of the unborn?
I think there are many cases of evil you have come to know as good, yet you judge God, because He, who is the only true judge, judged the nations.
Like I already said, I cannot tell you why He did the things you just Him for… You do not have the capacity to understand Him, because you’re not humble.
As long as you entertain any dialogue with me, I will quote my Bible, from which my beliefs are drawn. It says: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God” (Matt 5:8)
God loves you and may He bless you, despite yourself. If you’re fighting that, maybe you do believe.
Have a great day!
“You say I’m passive aggressive, what do you call your response? I think it’s quite aggressive and emotional.”
You think pointing out your using circular logic in your post to excuse murder is emotional?
Hate to see if I actually get emotional.
“In America, where people are killed by the State, do you agree that those killings are justified?”
No I don’t think they’re justified at all.
“Where they declare war for oil and greed and murder millions of people they don’t know, do you support?”
Nope. But I’m Canadian.
“I think there are many cases of evil you have come to know as good, yet you judge God, because He, who is the only true judge, judged the nations. ”
Nope. Murder, infanticide, rape, genocide are wrong no matter what or who is doing them.
“Like I already said, I cannot tell you why He did the things you just Him for… You do not have the capacity to understand Him, because you’re not humble. ”
So you can’t explain why genocide is right but you trust it is because the book told you it was okay.
Circular reasoning. Try thinking for yourself. being humble or not being humble has nothing to do with it.
You’re literally excusing rape, murder and genocide and pretending that makes you superior. It’s disgusting.
“As long as you entertain any dialogue with me, I will quote my Bible, from which my beliefs are drawn.”
Fine and I’ll ignore them. As I said, I already know what your bible says.
“God loves you and may He bless you, despite yourself. If you’re fighting that, maybe you do believe. ”
I can assure you I don’t believe. Your God is about as believable to me as Zeus and Odin are likely to be to you.
“Have a great day! ”
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Hi GC. In your analysis of my post, you skipped a very important part:
“Rape is bad. Murder is bad. Slavery is bad. War is bad. God is just”
Did you conveniently disregard this statement to continue your campaign that I believe those things are good and okay, because it happened in the Bible?
There are some horrific things that happened in the Bible that I believe were cultural issues. As a woman, I have also cringed and wondered why God would legislate what He legislated. But as someone who believes in Him, has a relationship to Him (like a loving Father and child), and knows that He is Good and Wise (and knows much more than I can ever know), I choose to trust Him.
I humble myself before Him as a the clay in His hands. My understanding grows daily from this relationship. I don’t justify Him. He doesn’t need mine or your justification. I don’t claim to be wiser or better than Him. That’s a privilege that atheists alone enjoy.
Enjoy it while you can.
I use my brain a lot! I have a sound mind. My belief in God make me wiser not stupid. Many of the liberties we now enjoy in society are because of Christians like me who pursued justice for others. We are not greater than our God.
“Blessed is he who is not offended in Me” says the Lord (Matthew 11:6)
““Rape is bad. Murder is bad. Slavery is bad. War is bad. God is just”
I didn’t ignore it. You excuse it with the last sentence regardless of what came before. You think those things are wrong unless your god is doing them. Why because the book says so. And so the circle of reasoning goes, which is what I pointed out from the beginning.
You have conveniently found a way to justify, condone and support a rape, genocide, murder etc
“There are some horrific things that happened in the Bible that I believe were cultural issues.”
Um, shouldn’t your god be above ‘cultural issues’? Isn’t that a human thing?
Since when is genocide and rape a cultural issue?
“As a woman, I have also cringed and wondered why God would legislate what He legislated.”
You should listen to that voice. It’s your voice of reason struggling to come out from beneath the mountain of horrific mythology.
“He doesn’t need mine or your justification. I don’t claim to be wiser or better than Him. That’s a privilege that atheists alone enjoy. ”
Not really. We don’t believe he exists. I can’t feel superior or wiser than Harry Potter.
However, I wouldn’t support a system that condones rape, slavery and murder. That’s completely on you.
I use my brain a lot! I have a sound mind. My belief in God make me wiser not stupid.”
I never said you were stupid.
“Many of the liberties we now enjoy in society are because of Christians like me who pursued justice for others. ”
Slavery was also a bi-product of Christians who used the OT verses that justify it. You can fight for liberty without believing in Yahweh. In fact, it becomes easier because you don’t have to sift through pages of atrocity to get there.
The stand off. What more can be said?
I don’t know which I found more interesting; the article itself or the exchange you had with the Godless Cranium. God bless you for rising in defense of the gospel so intelligently which could only have been as a result of deep study. Just reading your responses brings 1Pet 3:15 to mind: But sanctify the Lord God in your hearts: AND BE READY ALWAYS TO GIVE AN ANSWER TO EVERY MAN THAT ASKETH YOU A REASON OF THE HOPE THAT IS IN YOU with meekness and fear: You did just that, and very well too.
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So encouraged by your response, Ovie! Glad to have you visit my blog and contribute again. How are you?
You always have something worth reading so I would be depriving myself of something good if I don’t drop by your blog. It’s always a pleasure. I’m doing great. Thanks.
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Glad to hear it! Keep blogging too. Your humor is too fine to waste xoxo
Glad to hear it! Keep blogging too. Your humor is too fine to waste!
“I don’t know which I found more interesting; the article itself or the exchange you had with the Godless Cranium.”
Oh come on. The exchange is far more interesting. LOL
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By the way, just wanted to know when exactly you stopped being a believer and why. Just curious, if you don’t mind sharing.
I don’t mind a bit.
Probably around my early 20’s I stopped really believing although I had shreds left and after a while I transitioned into calling myself an agnostic till I realized in my late 20’s that I no longer believed at all. The more I learned, the more I moved away from religion.
Thanks for sharing. So was there any particular event or circumstances that led to your initial doubts?
Probably not one thing in particular. Small errors crept out at first. Noah’s Ark was a big one. It didn’t make sense to me. The idea that a god who had a sole provision of believing in him to be saved, neglected to tell anyone outside a very small desert region of the earth. I would ask myself, what about people like the Native Americans for example.
The more I learned about history and science, the less sense the bible made. I didn’t see how people who believed acted different than those who didn’t. In fact, they were often more hypocritical and cruel than people who didn’t believe.
There were just so many different things that it became impossible to ignore.
Thanks again. Do you feel that religion is something you need to save others from, or that it’s not at all a powerful force, since you believe there’s no God?
I believe religion is a very powerful force. People make it powerful. Once people stop worshiping that god, the god fades into obscurity like the thousands of gods before it.
I think truth is important. I don’t think people need saving but I think the discussion is worth having.
Thanks a lot for contributing your perspective and experience. Have a great day.
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You’re welcome and thanks for the conversation. All the best with your blog. 🙂
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Now you said it, yes Godless Cranium, the exchange was far more interesting. I happen to share the same faith with Ufuoma, so her article made sense to me naturally, but your arguments brought a different perspective to the fore which I found engaging and mentally stimulating. Reading only the article wouldn’t have done that to me. So, yes, the exchange was more interesting. LOL
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Thank you very much. I always find it interesting to read differing points of view also. I’m not sure if you’re familiar with the blog Isaiah Project but I write a weekly ‘ask an atheist’ post there as well. Maybe you can check it out.
The more the merrier.
“The whole premise of the atheist’s unbelief is built on the idea that they are wiser than God.”
No. False claim.
The basis of non belief – for me, you, or anyone else – is a lack of compelling reasons to believe. That you decide to make a special category for those who do not believe in your god doesn’t change this lack one jot or tittle. It simply shows the length to which you will go to pretend your god somehow deserves a special exemption from this standard. You. To then blame anyone who dares to question your special exemption with the charge of hubris doesn’t add any merit to the special exemption you make. But it does reveal a nice bit of mental gymnastics you make and reveal the contortionist thinking to maintain it. But it still fails to provide any compelling reasons to believe. Vilifying me and other atheists won’t strengthen your case to believe one iota but it does cause harm to non believers. And you’re okay with participating in that… in the name of your god, of course. As Godless Cranium rightly points out, your reliance on the circular reasoning – by appealing to biblical authority for biblical authority – is your problem and does not belong to non believers.
Said another way, everyone knows the Napkin Religion is the one true religion because it says so right here on this napkin and so you must be very arrogant to dare question this authority.
You see the problem (well, actually you probably don’t… which itself is the real problem and one owned solely by you).
You mentioned special exemption or category a couple of times… What is this special exemption that I made?
You exercise a special exemption (from how any of us greet unbelievable claims) to believe in your god, and then you create a special category (arrogant atheists) for those who do not believe in it.
Ok. I think I get that now. I also understand the napkin anology you have given. I can’t argue with that!
Christianity isn’t based on human reasoning, scientific evidence or even logic. It is based on a spiritual quality called ‘faith’, which is described in Hebrews as ‘the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen’ (11:1)
This is a precious quality that is needed for someone to believe. The Bible also says that God uses the foolish things of the world to compound the wise. As a Christian, I run the risk of being seen as delusional, judgemental or plain ignorant. But I still believe that the foolishness of God is wiser than the wisdom of men! (1 Corinthians 1:25).
I can’t use human reasoning to get you to believe. It is only by faith, which is given by the grace of God, for men to believe and be saved (Eph 2:8).
Thanks for contributing to the discussion!
Yes, we agree: it’s all about faith.
You think it’s a virtue. What does reality have to say about that?
Well, exercised in any other field of human concern, faith is a vice… with a very long and easily accessed history to demonstrate why. But now, suddenly, we are supposed meekly go along with the idea that <i.religious faith is different.
Is faith in the religious domain suddenly different than faith in any other area of human concern not dressed up assumption, not assertion, not an attribution disconnected from the very reality it pretends to describe? Not that I can see.
Claiming faith is a virtue for religion is just that: a claim of assumption disconnected to reality, an assertion disconnected to reality, an attribution disconnected from reality. Why do I conclude that? Well. because your claim that faith is a virtue is simply devoid of compelling evidence from reality to support it. If it were true as you assume, you assert, you attribute, if faith was in fact a virtue because it improved the quality of life for real people in real life, then we should be able to easily demonstrate that to effect.
Uh oh. Gird thy loins….
In almost any category of human well-being and social cohesion we find a negative correlate with religiosity in the aggregate. This should not be the case if the claim that faith is a virtue were true. What we find – when we bother to check in with reality – is that the more devout a population is, the more dysfunctional it is. We find all kinds of rates in all kinds of dysfunctional and antisocial behaviour aligned with inequalities supported and promoted and instituted by authority figures of religious belief. The more devout the faithful are in a population of devout people, the more harm we find done in its name. And it doesn’t matter which religion we’re talking about.
Look, it’s easy to say faith of the religious kind is a virtue. It;’s easy to quote scripture. It’s easy for believers to gather and old hands and sing about it. What’s harder is to show that the claim is true, that it aligns with reality, that reality supports the claim with compelling evidence, that faith is a virtue not because believers believe so but because reality demonstrates that it is.
If we respect reality enough to inform our opinions about it, then surely such evidence ,matters when making claims about the virtues of faith. If reality doesn’t matter, then surely we are dealing with a person who doesn’t care about the real world and the real people that inhabit it, doesn’t care if a belief aligns with it or is in fact contrary to how it actually is, but is living in a faith-induced bubble world where reason is immune from reality’s arbitration of those accepted beliefs. In medical terminology, we call this disconnection between beliefs and reality a ‘delusion’ and I don’t think honouring and respecting a delusion in the name pf piety is in fact a virtue; I think it’s enabling not just the dysfunction it causally produces to continue to effect those of us who must navigate reality but actively causes unnecessary harm along the way. And causing harm for the sake of a delusion is hardly virtuous.
Sorry, am I to understand from this that you think/believe unfaithfulness is a virtue? That to doubt everyone and everything is a virtue. Are you not exalting fear and disloyalty as virtues?
I speaking of faith as you originally offered. This is a method… granting high confidence to ideas and concepts not by merit by belief. Now let’s turn to reality to find out how well this method produces knowledge about reality, about how it operates and by what patterns we can harness. After all, you claim this approach is virtue because it offers you the means to gain insight into this agency you call God. Surely whether or not this agency is the case is important, wouldn’t you say?
You’re using faith. That is your method of inquiry, the one on which grants you access to ‘3D glasses’ so to speak so that you can see what’s really there, to see what I cannot. So, the very first question I must ask is standard: Is your claim true? Does the method of faith produce insight?
Can you offer me an example where faith produces insight? How about knowledge? One instance. If this has happened, that the method of faith works to produce insight into reality, then can you think of any therapy, technology, or application based on it? Just one.
Within the purview of religion, I know that faith has produced more than 40K Christian sects… many with incompatible claims to others. It has produced a veritable arena of gods and other supernatural critters and religious claims about reality and how it operates that are not just incompatible with our current understanding on which we regularly produces applications, therapies, and technologies that work for everyone everywhere all the time, but incompatible between each other.
With other purviews, I know that faith produces confidence in certain assumptions held to be true because they are believed to be true that produce things like apartheid and totalitarian regimes, genocides and wars, gross inequalities between genders and targets certain non pious subsections of any population as undesirables. I know faith-based beliefs empower alternative and complimentary medicine and are the foundation of denial is a host of well established ideas. But what I don;t know is any example where faith-based belief produces real insight into reality. Not one. Not ever. And yet you assure me that this is the basis upon which you invest the very highest level of confidence in a divine agency and that this investment produces in you an enhanced vision. The only thing lack in my mind is any evidence to back that up… other than your belief that it is so.
Do you believe I believe the things that I profess to believe in? Would those unfounded beliefs classify me as delusional?
I think you exercise faith-based beliefs to justify your religious beliefs… beliefs that I know do not withstand critical review and are immune from reality;s arbitration of them (hence the need for circular reasoning). I think anyone who infuses a very high degree of confidence in beliefs that do no withstand such critical review are exercising a very common and widespread form of delusional thinking called ‘cargo cult science’ and doing so because they have allowed themselves to be fooled. Before you take offense, I’m reminded of what Richard Feynman said about this danger and pass it along to explain what I mean:
Speaking at a commencement event at Caltech, theoretical physicist Feynman – a Nobel laureate in physics – said to the graduates, “We’ve learned from experience that the truth will come out. Other experimenters will repeat your experiment and find out whether you were wrong or right. Nature’s phenomena will agree or they’ll disagree with your theory. And, although you may gain some temporary fame and excitement, you will not gain a good reputation as a scientist if you haven’t tried to be very careful in this kind of work. And it’s this type of integrity, this kind of care not to fool yourself, that is missing to a large extent in much of the research in cargo cult science.The first principle is that you must not fool yourself — and you are the easiest person to fool.” Not paying attention to reality, he goes on, is a characteristic of cargo cult science in whatever field of study it arises. And it is a natural extension of theology whenever and wherever it leaves the axiomatic system in which it resides – the circular thinking you exhibit – and crosses the border into our shared reality. (You think your God is real, an actual causal agency in this reality and causing effect to it. You compound the error by asserting that I do not believe because of me rather than a lack of compelling evidence from reality.) It is then used to justify actions taken in it. This is fooling yourself and this is what I encounter all the time; people who actually make causal claims about effects they select that are in fact disconnected from reality’s arbitration of them. And without my permission you have included me in your cargo cult science and think a certain way about me because I do not share your confidence in your religiously inspired beliefs. You have fooled yourself and atheists pay the price. That’s why I comment here.
Extending your beliefs into our shared reality causes me and every other non believer harm in reputation and moral character if nothing else. You – not your god – is the causal agency for this pernicious effect. You – not your god – is responsible for doing this action. You – not your god – is the one extending the beliefs you favour. The remaining question for your own consideration and for those who share your religious beliefs is, are you capable of taking responsibility for your actions or are you going to avoid it by claiming your religious beliefs are not your own?
Tildeb. What we see here is truly a pleonasm. Certainly this is an army of words accompanying a corporal thought. Perhaps you could clearly show just how this post has harmed you.
Right on cue, Wally… you just love the term ‘pleonasm’ accompanied by the phrase ‘an army of words’. I think this about the 20th time you’ve used it when ‘commenting’ on my comment. So I’ll tell you again – for about the 20th time – why I use the number of words that seem to cause you so much angst: to EXPLAIN my reasoning… you know, the meaning you seem unable to meaningfully comment about. That’s why the answer to your ‘question’ is already succinctly and clearly contained in that ‘army of words’ you dismiss every time.
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So how are to personally harmed by this post? Can you actually quantify that in less than one thousand words? Can you Tildeb? You personally. How are you harmed by this post. You claimed it now show it
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I already have, Wally.
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No you did not. How are you harmed
Wow! Here I was thinking I was going to get a straight forward answer. You call it ‘cargo cult science’, I call it faith.
There is such a thing as freedom of thought. Even freedom of religion. You’re saying that my human rights are imposing on your existence. Your human rights (not to believe) is your own choice, and also does impose on my existence. Even if I didn’t have the freedom to think for myself and believe in what I choose to believe, it doesn’t change my beliefs.
And if I believe that you’re in danger of hell fire, then I wouldn’t be a considerate or loving person if I don’t try to warn you. If after I warn you, you conclude that I’m delusional, that’s your prerogative.
If as a scientist, you got first hand news of a major disaster that would affect me, and you told me of that disaster because you cared for my safety, then it is also my prerogative to heed your warning, or say science is all in your head.
I don’t agree with you. You don’t agree with me. But I wish you all the best anyway!
The only way such heinous acts can be justified is with the invention of the Divine Command Theory.
It is Yahweh’s Get Out Of Jail Free card
Without this we would have to admit that Yahweh is a monster of unparalleled evil.
And because we realise that such acts are evil when perpetrated by human beings it is impossible to fathom why a so-called ”loving, just God” would ever do such heinous acts when we, as paltry humans, can reason that it is obvious there would be any number of other options available to punish wrong doers instead of inflicting such pain, not least the agony and horror experienced by the Israelites under Joshua after being commanded by Yahweh to exterminate every living, breathing thing in Canaan.
So while the normal human conscience is screaming,”This is wrong!!” and the cognitive dissonance is also screaming to kick in, the theological answers are there to soothe: and Divine Command Theory is one of them.
Otherwise Christians would not be able to live with themselves.
It is worth bringing up the poem Charge of the Light Brigade, by Tennyson.
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:
Clearly, you’re not expecting a response. Thanks for airing your views!
I also appreciate your following. Have a great day
Why would you assume i am not expecting a response Ufuoma?
Have I not stated Christianity’s position succinctly?
Have I misrepresented it in any way whatsoever?
No. Not one iota.
And deep down I believe you know it, don’t you?
Where deep down do I know that you stated Christianity’s position succinctly? I mean… I just wrote a whole post about it, and you think you little rant has swayed me? Or maybe I have two personalities, where one agrees with you and the other doesn’t.
You hate God. That’s clear. Like I said in my post, you cannot begin to understand because you have to humble yourself before Him first. Any more dialogue with you about it will be equivalent to me arguing with a wall.
Please keep in mind, that aside this and three other posts I wrote recently, I generally write to a Christian audience. You may need to reconsider the follow.
I do not ”hate” gods. I am an atheist. Atheists do not believe in gods – yours or anyone else’s, so please do not throw this silly accusation around as it is so tiresome.
The day believers develop true humility and are able to be open and honest about their belief – starting with the acceptance that the bible has no historical evidence to support its claims, and their belief is based solely on faith then there may be the beginnings of understanding.
If your post was solely directed at Christians why do you heap so much scorn on atheists?
I said apart from this and about three other posts I wrote recently, I generally write to a Christian audience.
My discussions with atheists on The Isaiah Project sparked these recent posts. You’re welcome to read and comment on those. They are: The WOW Factor!, The Easy Way Out, I’ve Seen God and The Gift of Sight.
Ok. You don’t believe in God, so you can’t hate Him. Point taken.
Imagine someone goes to a remote village and tells people about America – the land of opportunity! Many people are believing this foreigner who’s telling people about a land that is so blessed, and following him because he says he can get them visas to relocate. But you’ve heard of this land, and heard of many people who went there, but became slaves. You warn the people not to believe in America! That these people promising visas want to enslave them. Because of the horrible historic facts you know about America, you’re not a fan. But it doesn’t mean you don’t believe that America exists!
It’s a bit of a stretch, but that’s how I think you’ve come to hate God. If you really didn’t believe He exists, I don’t know why else you’d spend so much time attacking Him and those who speak of Him.
Anyway, as much as I would love to entertain further debate, my website isn’t built to handle this. James, on the other hand, has made a forum for such a debate. I think we should keep the debate about whether or not God exists there.
Cheers and have a good night!
What an odd analogy. America can quite easily be demonstrated to exist. Gods cannot.
And I reiterate, I do not hate gods, – yours or anyone else’s.
And while you acknowledge this in your opening response you then go on to repeat the same god-hating nonsense toward the end of your comment.
This was duly noted. But on this post atheists are most definitely addressed and it is this post – ”The Wicked God of The Bible” – I am commenting on.
Would you care to address the points I have raised in my initial comment concerning Divine Command Theory and the horrors the Israelites must have experienced after Yahweh ordered them to annihilate every single living breathing thing in Canaan?
Can you possibly offer a rational explanation that might differ from the one I offered?
How would you prove the existence of America to a villager who hasn’t even left their town, let alone their city or country? Pictures? Video? Testimonies? Unless they travel the journey to get there themselves and experience those promised liberties, I suspect the angry villager will remain just as you are – ignorant, afraid, critical and angry! He just won’t believe and he’s too afraid to trust someone who has promised to pay his ticket and visa!!!
If your comments were not welcome, I would not have approved your first one. I don’t mind you commenting on any of my posts, as long as you take into consideration what I said in my post.
You didn’t take into consideration the things I said in my post, yet you expect me to honour your rant with an intelligent discussion?
Really, I’ve said all I’m willing to say on the matter. And yes, I do think you secretly believe that God exists, but just like the angry man in my analogy, you hate God because of what is written about Him. You judge Him as wicked.
Do you think I’d get so worked up about someone saying I believe in Santa Claus? Because there’s no need to argue with someone who I suspect is insane.
Nighty night 🙂
How would you prove to the villager?
Stick him on a boat and take him there.
My comment was not a ‘rant’ but an astute observation of your religion. And I did take into consideration what you wrote which id why I have not commented on other posts.
My comment reflects exactly how Christianity deals with the heinous violence and cruelty meted out by Yahweh and his minions in the Old Testament.
Show me a single sentence that does not reflect the way Christians deal with these issues?
Of course I do not believe gods exist; yours or anyone else’s, and this is based solely on the evidence presented.
So, if you have evidence that does show the existence of your particular god then I am more than willing to consider it. On this you have my word.
To respond to your answer to my question…
You said you would ‘stick’ him on a boat and take him there. Against his will? That’s called abduction, or better known as ‘human trafficking’. It’s illegal.
In Christianity, we respect this basic human right, and God honors our free will. He will not force anyone to know or love Him, because He knows that true love is a choice.
Now, it is quite amazing that billions of people around the world who have never been ‘stuck’ on a boat to America, believe that America exists, from the other evidences presented to them. In the same way, billions of people have come to believe in God, and His Christ, even without seeing Him face to face!
God seeks such people of faith to worship Him. He doesn’t reveal Himself at the whim of men, and if that’s what is needed for you to believe…your loss! But who knows, maybe He will be gracious, and do to you what He did to Paul!
I’m sorry that I can’t stick you on any boat to take you to God. His realm is not accessible by land, air or water. But, I can recommend one thing that has worked many a time – humble prayer.
Thanks for the chat!
Hi Ark, long time. I addressed the question of the need for the blood sacrifice in my latest post, The Debt Collector And The Blood Sacrifice at https://ufuomaee.blog/the-debt-collector
You must be desperate for attention if you are having to reach so far back to come and call me to try to explain why your murdering god had to enact a Blood Sacrifice just to make you feel better about yourself.
Call me again when you have managed to understand your bible and history a little better.
Or, if you deconvert ….
I’ll even do a dance for you!
”Pick a god … any god”
It’s okay Ark. I just thought it might be of interest to you. No problem. Take it easy.
Out of curiosity …. Why would a blood sacrifice of a narrative construct be interesting?
Well, to you I assumed it would be, since that appeared to be a bone of contention with you and Christianity. It’s no biggie, Ark. Sorry for disturbing you.
No problem. Are you any closer to telling the truth yet or are you still preaching the nonsense derived from Christian dogma?
What do you think I would say to that? Think about it for a second, and maybe you might rephrase your question, if you actually want a conversation.
If you are really curious, follow the link and read the post. Otherwise, I’m cool and I’m done.
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I was hoping something like this ….
”Yes, I am still preaching the nonsense of Christianity.”
Oh, and while you continue to moderate me don’t expect any more comments in the near future.
Have a day
I moderate everyone on my blog. That’s a legacy owed to our conversations 🙂
And you have yet to address a single issue raised on my comments.
This is what indoctrination normally does to people; they develop a mental ”blind spot” and simply switch off. Which is what I mentioned, otherwise cognitive dissonance kicks in.
I believe the correct term for this behaviour is compartmentalization and the human invention of the Divine Command Theory takes care of any underlying worries that under normal circumstances a normal empathetic individual would likely suffer a breakdown.
I will attempt to respond to your initial comment as candidly as I can.
“The only way such heinous acts can be justified is with the invention of the Divine Command Theory”.
And I would say, that’s based on your understanding.
“It is Yahweh’s Get Out Of Jail Free card”
Who is Yahweh to you? You speak of this Being as though you believe He exists.
“Without this we would have to admit that Yahweh is a monster of unparalleled evil.”
If Yahweh doesn’t exist, how can He be a monster? And if He exists according to what is written of Him in the Bible, then you need to take into consideration why you are in no place to judge Him (as per my whole article). For starters, you can’t even begin to understand what He does. So before you can speak about Him as though He exists…you need to first of all admit that He does.
“And because we realise that such acts are evil when perpetrated by human beings it is impossible to fathom why a so-called ”loving, just God” would ever do such heinous acts when we, as paltry humans, can reason that it is obvious there would be any number of other options available to punish wrong doers instead of inflicting such pain, not least the agony and horror experienced by the Israelites under Joshua after being commanded by Yahweh to exterminate every living, breathing thing in Canaan.”
What is evil and what is good? Who defines evil and good? When a King resides over his people, and judges between two that one must be put to death, who will judge the King as evil? When a man kills his neighbour without bringing his case to the King or to a recognised court, will this man be justified before the king, even if the King would have killed the victim anyway? No, the King will declare the man who took the law into his own hands as evil! The Lawgiver is above the law, whether or not you like it. He is the only one who make just judgements, and to whom everyone one else must give account. God (or Yahweh), if He were to exist, is the LAWGIVER, and the only one who can take matters into His own hands. He cannot be brought before any court of man. If you still judge His rule as unrighteous, then you can bring that up when you stand, correction, cower before Him!
“So while the normal human conscience is screaming,”This is wrong!!” and the cognitive dissonance is also screaming to kick in, the theological answers are there to soothe: and Divine Command Theory is one of them.”
The Divine Command Theory is your creation. It has nothing on God. It’s a theory you formed to understand why I worship and submit to the rule of God, while you don’t. I don’t have to accept it, any more that you have to accept the salvation of Christ!
“Otherwise Christians would not be able to live with themselves.”
Oh, I live with myself very well. I live in awe, wonder, fear and love of my God.
“It is worth bringing up the poem Charge of the Light Brigade, by Tennyson.
Theirs not to make reply,
Theirs not to reason why,
Theirs but to do and die:”
Really, Ark, it wasn’t worth it at all!
I hope I have done justice to your initial comment at last. I wish you a good day.
And please… like I’ve said before, let’s keep the debate on James’ blog. It’s really not my thing here. Cheers!
I do not believe in gods, as I have already explained.
I respond to what I consider to be erroneous posts such as this simply because it is a public forum so therefore I can and debate in pursuit of truth is healthy. Also, because I feel strongly about this stuff being taught to children who are often not in a position to exercise critical thought and are severely handicapped when it comes to making critical decisions regarding all aspects of god belief and religion.
DCT is not my invention dear . In fact the first time I heard this diatribe was during a video debate by William Lane Craig who used it to justify your god;s actions over the genocidal flood story. It is used by numerous Christian apologists and is a central feature of your doctrine.
But the Wicked God post is here, on your blog.. Which post on James’ blog should we discuss this issue?
But more to the point, why are you scared of discussing it here?
I am not scared of discussing anything. You will find my blog filled with many controversial issues, from a Christian perspective. There are lots of posts on James’ blog that address this issue about the existence of God. I know you have been on many other blogs asking the same questions and getting the same answers.
To be honest, I don’t want you commenting on my blog, taking up my time on pointless debate. It is pointless because I believe you’re set on not believing, and I’m commited to God. I was referring you to James’ blog, because there, he has thrown the floor open for such debate. That’s not the case here.
I deal with people with genuine interest in learning and following God. So, it’s not so much about my blog or my fear, but it’s really about YOU.
All the same, thanks for the opportunity to defend my faith and grow in my understanding.
Then why not simply post about the positive things about your religion? That would be an honest way to teach people with a genuine interest, surely?
What was the need for you to post about the ”Wicked God” and slag off non-believers?
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You’re right. I wanted your attention. I hoped you’d see from my post that the war you’ve waged on God will not end well for you. I hoped that you would see the Christian defence.
And you’re also right to present your challenges. As you can see from the comments, you’re not the first. However, I did perceive your initial comment as a rant, which didn’t take into consideration my post. But we’ve finally broken through into real discussion.
I’m sorry if you felt slagged off. My aim wasn’t to insult you.
Even though the title of the post draws in people of your perspective, the majority of the post ministers to my Christian brothers and sisters, so that they can understand why they should never be swayed by such attacks against our God. It was a multi-purpose post, for a lack of a better word.
Again, it wasn’t my aim to offend. You have a right to not believe in God. But I will add, you don’t have a right to judge Him for what is written about Him, if you claim that He doesn’t exist – except if you actually do believe He exists.
Excellent! It is refreshing to read some outright honesty for a change. That is a very good start.
So, exactly how do you believe it … ‘’will not end well’’ for me? I am genuinely interested to read your particular perspective on this issue, and what you base it upon.
Which, I hope, is a good thing, yes?
Oh, have no fears, I do not take such things seriously; I do not believe in gods, remember? Besides, I generally feel such poorly informed expressions of anger against non-believers are more a reflection of the insecurities of the believer.
In my experience, if the thing you are trying to promote is strong enough and has a sound evidentiary basis in truth, such attacks, or defenses if you prefer, should be unnecessary.
What you offer should speak for itself. That Christian Apologetics is almost an industry in its own right speaks volumes.
No offense taken, I assure you. I do not judge gods, yours or anyone else’s, as I do not believe in them. However it is well within my right to judge the actions and outcomes of the followers of gods.
Children deserve to be protected from such superstitious doctrine that has no evidentiary basis and is proven in many cases to cause long term psychological damage. As non indoctrinated adults they are free to make a choice on such matters based on critical thinking and evaluation of the best evidence available to them.
So, would you care to explain the morality behind the doctrine of Hell and Divine Command Theory and explain the basis for these doctrines?
No, Ark. I really don’t care to explain any further. Take it whichever way you please.
Have a good night!
You wrote right here in the comments:
So who exactly is it you are writing to on this particular post if not to ”those who don’t believe”?
I have already answered that in my last comment. Cheers!
August 12, 2015 at 1:57 pm
Wow! All these words and argument about the GOD who doesn’t,t exist? Dear Ark. With acceptance comes peace. Believe me. We cannot see the wind and air but we can see evidence all around us that its there. In a cool breeze that whips our hair and cools us off under the heat of the scorching sun. In the great rush of relief and life after emerging from the depths of a pool of water to breath. We can also see the evidence in the wreckage left behind after a typhoon or hurricane. And yes science can always give you the physical evidence of the how. Never tithe why. There is still a limit to man’s knowledge. A lot of unexplained phenomenon out there in our so called “real” world. Please be humble enough to accept that, and also the choice to believe or not to every man . Why? Because GOD does. And yes I believe. Glory Hallelujah !
I have no qualms about what you believe, Abe, trust me on that score. However, you do preach this to children who, in many cases, are unable to exercise critical thought and evaluate the doctrine for themselves.
Also, there is the implicit threat of Hell should they ( anyone ) not accept this god of yours, am I correct?
For me ,as a adult, there really is no worries on that score. But for children …. well now, that is a completely different kettle of fish.
Feel free to proselytize, as I am sure you do, but when children are involved then for me it becomes a bit of an issue.
Thanks Abe! I appreciate your visit and contribution the to discussion 🙂
God bless you, sister!
As for the boat. Don’t worry . One is coming for you and I someday. As for children, being taught (because they are children) . Who knows we’re you and I will be today if our parents didn’t teach and show us (patiently) where to stick the spoon at the breakfast table. In our mouths instead of our noses, our hair, ears, .just imagine as a child , being left to grow without guidance at least till u can make your own choices. S o please don’t go there!
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Lol! Nice one, Abe. However, if you don’t specifically reply Ark’s comment, he’s unlikely to see your comment and respond.
Thanks I replied Ark
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This argument by Abe is not an explanation, not an answer, and definitely doesn’t provide us any insight whatsoever into the ‘Why’ question he uses to replace the scientific approach, the methodological naturalism approach… as if this pious hand-waving is somehow as equivalent as it is meaningful to a disciplined and knowledge-seeking approach.
So my question is whether or not Abe’s comment is a legitimate and equivalent approach to answering the ‘Why’ question?
And the answer is obvious: No.
In fact and practice, this argument by Abe is nothing more and nothing less than a pious attempt to not answer the question and be satisfied by that. This kind of piety is really s an avoidance tactic and produces exactly zero knowledge, zero insight, and zero understanding of any ‘Why’ question.
How is that an ‘answer’?
Look, what we do know is that such ‘answers’ don’t fit and do not align with accurate descriptions derived from the ‘How’ questions, as in how such an agency is responsible for the effects selected. The effects can be fully accounted for without any reference to some supernatural interventionist creative agency. Yet this fact (that produces knowledge and all kinds of practical stuff based on it) doesn’t slow down believers one nanosecond from unthinkingly attributing all kinds of effects to this nebulous and ill-defined causal agency they call ‘God’. They are fully satisfied with their non-answer and then advertise as if it were an answer.
And so we read this kind of pseudo-answer all the time from the religious… as if it actually answers anything when it not only fails to do so but tries to make acceptable a state of perpetual ignorance. Godidit. And in this sense, this state of ignorance masquerading as some kind of equivalent insight to the natural approach can be shown to cause harm to real people in real life by elevating ignorance and calling these ridiculous and absurd ‘answers’ knowledge. That’s what ignorance – especially the pious kind like this – does: perpetuates itself and tries to wrap it in virtue without accepting responsibility for the harm it produces.
Firstly, I’d like to ask one question? Why do you refer to me as a “he” instead of a ” she” ( which I am by the way) . Is this a typo on your part or a general belief that anyone called Abe will automatically be a male. As we all know that most people named Abraham in the Western world are called Abe for short. An understandable presumption on your part considering that based on you general societal norms and etiquette . You haven,t seen me yet you believed that I was a man. Now there is of course the possibility that I am a male and you can now simply take it on faith ( as you did earlier that I am) . However, if I were to tell you that I was a female and my full name was Abiodun ( a name given to both sexes in Africa) , would you be lying to take that on faith as we’ll. at least until such a time when I choose to reveal myself to you and prove that I was either male or female or something else ( there is that distinct possibility) . Now the fact that I exist irrespective of your qualification or definition of me ( we so love our boxes don’t we) is not in “doubt ” here is it. ? And besides the very definition of me that I ‘ve presented to you here, until you can prove otherwise you simply have no other way to qualify me or any of my other attributes, except ofcourse in relation to what you would consider as standard set of variables, which may or may not apply to me at all. ( e.g. How tall is a computer program or software? ) so you can decide to go on faith and decide to interact with me believing that I am who I say I am. And the same goes for me. Faith my friend like intellect and desire, is a natural human trait, whether you are willing to accept it or not. Pretending , it’s not there doesn’t make it disappear. We apply faith even more nowadays as we have to accept a lot of the things we view simply on faith. Faith doesn’t mean it,s not there , it’s just that special ability to accept that it does even ,at the moment we can’t. Just like the new discoveries, in science , made over the centuries, . Stars, constellations, medical breakthroughs, new species……… They were always there. And some people ( the scientists, explorers) all believed , they were there. Even when no one believed and people thought they were ignorant or evil even. Pe.rhaps God is still to much for some people to wrap their hearts around (the mind can’t take it. It’s ill equipped for faith. It comes in after faith has won the battle and usually wants to take all the credit) .
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Nice one Abe! I don’t know how I could have responded to that myself! It was filled with so much repetition and waffle, and it felt like an intentional attempt to bring confusion. Glad, you cut right through it to the point – which is that faith is as real a quality as intellect, and in fact, that it precedes it!
Cheers dear x
A willingness to ‘believe without compelling evidence’ is perfectly understandable as part of our evolutionary heritage. There is a qualitative difference between assuming the rustle in the grass is a predator (wrong 999 times out of 1000) and the rustle in the grass is the wind (right 999 times out of 1000). The willingness to believe doesn’t become a virtue just because all of us are quite capable of empowering the urge to assume and believe it to be accurate.
Tildeb, thanks for including me in your discussion, but I was actually talking to Abe. You are a bundle of contradiction in my book, but if she’s willing to wave through all your waffle, that’s good for her. I really don’t have that time.
Thanks for the short reply though!
Abe asks, Why do you refer to me as a “he” instead of a ” she” ( which I am by the way).
Simply by the naming convention I’m familiar with. Thank you for correcting me (and my erroneous assumption).
Now to the heart of your criticism: you have conflated the two meanings of the term ‘belief’ and have purposefully confused the two to make any belief equivalent in kind to religious belief as expressed by faith.
The first definition for belief is one of confidence based on likelihood and/or possibility. This is a sliding scale. For example, I believed your moniker, by Western convention, indicated a male. You corrected me and so my belief in my assumption immediately slid from likely to unlikely. I have no investment in this belief and so it is based on whatever I have at hand… in this case my assumption and convention. You indicated that the belief when arbitrated by reality was incorrect. Presto! My belief is now better informed and so I change it accordingly. I maintain some doubt because, as you said, I do not know you and you could be intentionally misleading me. But the confidence I hold is provisional based on likelihood and probability. I have no compelling reason to doubt what you say and I have no vested interest in maintaining my assumed belief and so my belief changes. No surprise. That willingness to alter my beliefs to better fit reality is hardly a vice, wouldn’t you agree?
The second definition for belief is one of the religious kind and this kind is qualitatively different from the generic belief. In religious belief, there is no sliding scale. There is neither probability nor likelihood used for some sliding scale. Belief of the religious kind is called ‘faith’ for a very good reason: it not only requires no arbitration by reality but is in fact and practice exempted from it by privilege. One either believes in some set of fundamental religious precepts or one does not. In order to be a Christian, one either accepts Jesus Christ died for our sins and was resurrected, or one does not. There’s no sliding scale here. There’s no arbitration by reality to negotiate how much or little confidence based on the likelihood or probability for a believer to assign to such an event. And there’s no willingness to alter this belief with any contrary compelling evidence from reality as I exhibited assigning gender for my pronouns about the author of your comment.
These are not equivalent meanings. In fact, they are incompatible meanings for this homonym.
It does not serve what’s true, what is the case, to intentionally conflate and then obfuscate these opposite meanings by using the same word ‘belief’ and, later ‘faith’ and then repackage this misrepresentation to mean all belief has the same meaning as religious faith. This is not true, not the case, and you know that perfectly well.
So why the intentional deception here?
Is it the case, as you suggest, that belief of the religious kind – assuming with the highest possible confidence – is the same kind of belief used by anyone exercising methodological naturalism? Is it the case that, say, a scientist doing scientific work equivalently denies reality any role to arbitrate some belief the claim? Of course not. Is it the case that people denying reality the right to arbitrate claims made about it actually empowers inquiry and produces knowledge? Well, there is no evidence from reality for this. The only evidence is the belief you have, and it is this belief that you then empower with confidence. You have conflated your belief about reality to be reality itself.
You continue your linguistic conflation (and confusion) suggesting that belief of the religious kind – faith – is both a real thing as a ‘trait’ all humans share (a sort of genetic inheritance expressed by believing the unbelievable – as if that ‘trait’ exists independently of those who have been indoctrinated into believing some specific supernatural notions) as well as some invisible floating cloud thingy waiting to be plucked from the ether and made manifest, as if the generic kind of faith is something that can be brought into being and thus real.
Do you see a trend here? You willingness to use linguistic trickery and confusion through conflation is hardly a reliable method to comport your beliefs about reality to reality itself; rather, it is a tactic used to reshape reality to comport to your beliefs about it. That’s why it’s a tactic to empower ignorance and a way to malign respect for reality as if that is the unreasonable position.
And I replied back, Abe.
I believe in our real god and not d god of d bible
Who’s the real god and how do you get to learn about him/her/it?