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Breece6 replied...
Aug. 27, 2012 at 1:29 pm

Random and Dynamo:
 
Yup, I'll certainly do some more in depth research on both of your proposed religions.  
 
I think talking to a bunch of teenagers has helped though :P  I'm learning a lot from these discussions.
 
(and besides, I haven't seen a good, heated philosophy forum debate in months, I think these two threads I've made have been pretty interesting sparks, maybe lead to some more discussions in the future.)

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half.noteThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Aug. 27, 2012 at 2:24 pm

 
 
Breece:
Okay, I should have seen this argument coming. :)
 
I have sometimes thought the same thing about the contrast of God in the Old Testament and New Testament. And maybe they were different Gods. No, I’m not suggesting there is more than one God or that God changes. God doesn’t change his character, but perhaps He changes the way he deals with His people.
The Israelites never had Jesus. They sacrificed animals because this was a show of their faith in the first coming of Jesus. Much like how our belief in Jesus’ life and death for us on the cross shows our faith in his second coming.
God knows how to reach us. Maybe the Israelites needed that harsh and firm direction. The Israelites were living in the time just after the fall of man. They were seeing the beginning of the spread of sin. God chose them to represent His character, much like he has chosen Christians to do that now.
As for the “made life miserable for women”, I’ll have to disagree with that, though I don’t really want to argue about it. I believe that the whole idea of women being “mistreated” or “abused” is propaganda. But don’t mind me, I have rather strange views on the topic of feminism.
 
Actually, the Protestant Bible is based off the Greek Septuagint and organized similarly to the J.ewish Bible, not the Catholic Bible. So it is pretty trustworthy. And the Catholic Bible has extra books rather than leaving any out.
Read this link if you want to find out more:
h ttp://w ww.christianbiblereference.o rg/faq_bibles.htm  
(remember to remove the spaces)
 
One last thing:
The Bible is a collection of works, and actually very consistent for being so. Despite the different ways that God interacted with His people, none of the ideas conflict.
Imagine if someone decided to gather the works of many different authors from different time periods and wanted it to speak one message. They couldn’t do it. The authors would contradict each other in some way or another. The Bible doesn’t do that.
The Bible also has a lot of insight into the human condition and, in my opinion, perfectly explains everything that happens in the world, from creation and sin to prophets and death.

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White-Horse replied...
Aug. 27, 2012 at 2:54 pm

Breece, its perfectly alright to not have a religon, you know.

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CollinF replied...
Aug. 27, 2012 at 8:13 pm

to Breece:
 
So it's the Old Testament depiction of God that gives ya the heeby jeebys, eh? Can't say I blame ya. I felt the same way for quite a while. Try to get your hands on Paul Copan's Is God a Moral Monster? if it's even remotely possible. Good book; good writer. Youtube videos featuring apologists also helped me clear things up.
 
Ya see, most if not all of people's disgust with the Old Testament comes from misunderstanding. The Bible's a great book, but it has to be studied, not just read. Kinda like when you read Romeo and Juliet in Freshman English and Juliet says, "Romeo, oh Romeo. Wherefore art thou Romeo?" And the kids in the class who are actually paying attention are like, "What? She's talking to him, so she obviously knows where he is. Shakespeare's an idiot." But what they fail to realize is that "wherefore" really translates to "why." So Juliet is asking Romeo why he has to be a Montague, thus making their relationship difficult: she's not lookin around trying to figure out where the heck Romeo is in the night.
 
Same thing happens with ancient Hebrew from 4,000 years ago, but worse. We mistake our i.gnorance for cleverness.  

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CollinF replied...
Aug. 27, 2012 at 8:15 pm

to White-Horse:
 
Alright and right aren't synonomous. It's the latter we should strive for.

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White-Horse replied...
Aug. 27, 2012 at 8:32 pm

*raises eyebrow* Indeed we should. I agree wholeheartedly. I am simply stating that it is not wrong to be indecisive.

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8tephanieThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Aug. 27, 2012 at 11:57 pm

So my question is this; do you believe in the Christian God but want to explore other religions or have you lost all faith that He's real and you think a different god (or lack of) might be?

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Breece6 replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 10:11 am

 
Gonna respons to the smaller ones before I get to you Half.note ;)
 
White Horse:
 
Yup, I know.  It's just I'm very interested in finding alternatives and honestly I get off on these kind of discussions :P
 
I'd be happy to know you're opinion as well!  Like I said in another post, this thread doesn't have to be about me specifically any more.  It can function more as a "Religious debate thread to end all others" kind of thing, so feel free to throw your opinion in.
 
8tephanie:
 
I wouldn't say I've exactly lost my faith persay, but rather I'm taking a vacation from it to try and learn other things, I'm experiencing some doubt and I like hearing from other people.
 
Collin: 
 
Hmm, seems like a good book, I'll take a look into it.  
 
I kind understand that, but your analogy seems a little too simple, one of them is a simple lack of vocabulary, one of them is a question of morality in actions.  I wanna read your book first and then get back to you on this :P

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Breece6 replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 10:16 am

Half.note:
 
I understand what you're saying, but that opens up a whole new area of problems.  Why should the Israelites have to live that way?  Why couldn't Jesus have given himself up for them as well?
 
And also it wasn't just the Israelites suffering here, in fact they were probably the least affected.  What about all the countless nations they destroyed?  I can't remember the specific verses anymore but I think I remember God specifically giving instructions to kill all the men in the nations they conquered, and keep the women and children for slaves.  In fact David had tons of s.ex slaves, that was a common practice back then.  "God" seems like a justification to me.
 
Regarding the Bible, maybe.  I'll look into it some more when school allows.

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Breece6 replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 10:28 am

To Everyone:

Seeing as how this is more a general discussion now, I figured I'd throw this in here.

In reading some of the "I'm a Mormon" thread, specifically the debate between Half.note and ImagineDangerous, I've noticed something else I'd like to bring up.

Many religions believe that direct communication with God is evidence for the legitimacy of their beliefs. I've seen ferverously devout Muslims, Mormons, Protestants, Catholics, Jews, Pagans (take Pagans with a grain of salt 'cause I tend to find a great deal of variety on what Paganism is exactly), all kinds. If all of them claim to have communicated with God and felt him say there's was the right way, then there are 3 possibilities the way I see it.

1) One of them is outright correct, and all the others are false. (I'm going to include the possibility that God is just manipulating us under this because I'm counting Maltheism as a possibility under this category)

2) They all have pieces of the truth (Unitariansim)

3) Communication with God is not real and is something else entirely such as a placebo effect or even an ingrained part of our brain brought about by natural selection possibly because believing in a God led to more desire to live and compete and made increased survival chances for those who did believe.

I'd like to know your opinions on this! Thanks!

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Breece6 replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 10:29 am

 
To Everyone:
 
Seeing as how this is more a general discussion now, I figured I'd throw this in here.
 
In reading some of the "I'm a M.ormon" thread, specifically the debate between Half.note and ImagineDangerous, I've noticed something else I'd like to bring up.
 
Many religions believe that direct communication with God is evidence for the legitimacy of their beliefs.  I've seen ferverously devout M.uslims, M.ormons, P.rotestants, C.atholics, J.ews, P.agans (take P.agans with a grain of salt 'cause I tend to find a great deal of variety on what P.aganism is exactly), all kinds.  If all of them claim to have communicated with God and felt him say there's was the right way, then there are 3 possibilities the way I see it.
 
1) One of them is outright correct, and all the others are false.  (I'm going to include the possibility that God is just manipulating us under this because I'm counting Maltheism as a possibility under this category)
 
2) They all have pieces of the truth (Unitariansim)
 
3) Communication with God is not real and is something else entirely such as a placebo effect or even an ingrained part of our brain brought about by natural selection possibly because believing in a God led to more desire to live and compete and made increased survival chances for those who did believe.  
 
I'd like to know your opinions on this!  Thanks!
 

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Breece6 replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 10:30 am

 
To Everyone:
 
Seeing as how this is more a general discussion now, I figured I'd throw this in here.
 
In reading some of the "I'm a M.ormon" thread, specifically the debate between Half.note and ImagineDangerous, I've noticed something else I'd like to bring up.
 
Many religions believe that direct communication with God is evidence for the legitimacy of their beliefs.  I've seen ferverously devout M.uslims, M.ormons, P.rotestants, C.atholics, J.ews, P.agans (take P.agans with a grain of salt 'cause I tend to find a great deal of variety on what P.aganism is exactly), all kinds.  If all of them claim to have communicated with God and felt him say there's was the right way, then there are 3 possibilities the way I see it.
 
1) One of them is outright correct, and all the others are false.  (I'm going to include the possibility that God is just manipulating us under this because I'm counting Maltheism as a possibility under this category)
 
2) They all have pieces of the truth (Unitariansim)
 
3) Communication with God is not real and is something else entirely such as a placebo effect or even an ingrained part of our brain brought about by natural selection possibly because believing in a God led to more desire to live and compete and made increased survival chances for those who did believe.  
 
I'd like to know your opinions on this!  Thanks!
 

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half.noteThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 10:56 am

 
Breece:
I liked how everyone else was the "smaller ones".  XD
 
My ego aside, you make some interesting arguments.
I think, in a way, Jesus did die for the Israelites as well. Like I said before, the Israelites were sacrificing animals as a way to point forward to Jesus’ first coming. When Jesus came as a baby, he was fulfilling the Israelites hopes for a Saviour. To say that Jesus’ first coming wasn’t for the Israelites, is like saying Jesus’ second coming isn’t for us.
 
Also, when it comes to the people that the Israelites destroyed, there is something important to understand: God knows everything. (I know you are doubting this right now, but I’m just trying to argue this on the viewpoint of the Bible.) The other nations that the Israelites took over or killed were sinful nations. They had already rejected God and were past the hope of salvation. They had wandered too far into the darkness. It was not wrong for the Israelites to destroy them (I’m not saying killing is right, but you must remember that these nations were at war).
 
As for the topic of s.ex slaves, I agree that it was common back then. But I disagree that God condoned it. David was a great King, but his weakness was women. This weakness was one that caused David to sin by sending his best friend into battle to be killed so that he could have his wife for himself. I’d imagine that these “s.ex slaves” were something that God was not happy about. But I’ll have to look into it and get back to you.
 
And when you do look into the Bible, feel free to come to me with any questions. I’d be happy to help.
 
And on the topic you just brought up, I’ll have to comment on it later since I don’t have time right now.
 
God bless. <3

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8tephanieThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 11:38 am

So, I’ll start with addressing the answer you gave to my question but I’d also like to expand on some other stuff.


1. To have a Christian faith is to believe that Jesus Christ is our Savior and that the only way to the Father is through Him, and the only way to get to heaven is through Him. So to take a “vacation” from your faith would involve being aware that it’s true but to stop believing it long enough to be tempted towards another religion.


2. The animal sacrifices by the Israelites, from my understanding, was their atonement for their sin. “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life.” If the wages of sin is death, it means someone has to die. Or in their case, something. And it couldn’t be the sick old black sheep on death’s door, it was the best lamb they had. When God sent Jesus, it was for multiple reasons. For one, the Jews had strayed from being ambassadors of God’s love and had made it about the rules of religion. They wouldn’t even let the Gentiles in the temple because they weren’t Jews! Jesus came to sort of redirect them. But the other reason was to free us, and we were also freed from sacrificing animals because the most perfect Holy sacrifice was sent down to atone for our sins in the most horrific way possible. Our sins are paid for.


3. I’d like to approach the idea of God being different in the two different testaments. In the Old Testament. In the time of Noah: Everyone disobeys greatly, becoming murderers, molesters, thieves, liars, etc. But God saw one man and his family that had hope and gave humanity a second chance. Israel enslaved, God sends ordinary man to save them and promises them paradise. Giant threatens the safety of a Kingdom, God sends little boy to defeat him (who later becomes a king). And how many times were people in pain or had a tough time in life that led to something great? There was Moses who fled his country because he killed someone and he also had a stutter, but he brought the Israelites out of Egypt. Joseph was hated and therefore abandoned by his brothers, enslaved, accused of something he didn’t do, and later became Pharaoh, saving Egypt in it’s drought/famine. Naomi lost all her family and Ruth was slaving away providing for her in the field of her future husband. Jesus was a descendant of Ruth and her husband Boaz who met under terrible circumstances. It sounds like the exact same God to me!


Okay :) I think it’s time to stop talking now, I never make my replies this long! Just had a lot to say (and still do) but I’ll leave you with this for now. And I’ll definitely be praying God gives you direction and clarity as well as discernment to make the right decisions in this time of doubt :)

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Breece6 replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 11:57 am

Half.note:
 
1) I can sort of see what you're saying here, very interesting.  I'd never thought of it that way before.  I'd like to get Destinee's opinion on this since she's been on the side I'm on for far longer, she might be able to respond in a way I can't think of.  However for the moment I concede to this point :)
 
2) Lots of nations are sinful, some far more sinful than the ones described there.  That's another problem, if we take a look at history then we see horrible, terrible crimes commited that go unpunished.  And yet just because these nations happened to live next to God's Chosen people they deserved to be brutally slain and have their homes taken from them?  What happened to mercy here?  Where's the saviour for those people?  Heck, the Israelites did some pretty terrible things, yet they were chosen to put entire nations to the blade.  
 
My problem is that from an objective standpoint, it really sounds like some primitive nations going to war, and then the winners manipulating history and using God to justify themselves.  We see it all the time in history!  Native Americans were portrayed to be vile, evil creatures by the Europeans.  You know that image of the d.evil that's portrayed as a red man with a spear?  That came from the Native Americans.  The Europeans (Christians at this time) portrayed the Native Americans as d.evils, then killed 95 percent of them and claimed they were doing God's work.  Only hundreds of years later today do we doubt the validity of those claims.  Perhaps thousands of years ago is too long to know the exact history of it so we just assume the Israelites told the truth?  
 
The problem is that history is written by the Victor.  That's what the Old Testament sounds like to me.  A history written by the people that won, justiftying their actions.  
 
3) I digressed a little bit with David, but regardless there are parts of the Mosaic law that describe how women and children are to be sold into slavery.  Nowhere does it mention "remember to keep slave families together", or anything like that.  I'll find the exact verses if you really want me to, but you could probably google it yourself too :P
 
I'll be sure to keep you all updated on my opinions as they change and ask for guidance accordingly.  
 
Thanks!

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Destinee replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 4:33 pm

Breece, 



Sorry, what would you like my opinion on exactly? :S 

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Destinee replied...
Aug. 28, 2012 at 5:35 pm

Breece: 
 
You said: 
 
"Many religions believe that direct communication with God is evidence for the legitimacy of their beliefs.  I've seen ferverously devout M.uslims, M.ormons, P.rotestants, C.atholics, J.ews, P.agans (take P.agans with a grain of salt 'cause I tend to find a great deal of variety on what P.aganism is exactly), all kinds.  If all of them claim to have communicated with God and felt him say there's was the right way, then there are 3 possibilities the way I see it. 
  
1) One of them is outright correct, and all the others are false.  (I'm going to include the possibility that God is just manipulating us under this because I'm counting Maltheism as a possibility under this category) 
  
2) They all have pieces of the truth (Unitariansim) 
  
3) Communication with God is not real and is something else entirely such as a placebo effect or even an ingrained part of our brain brought about by natural selection possibly because believing in a God led to more desire to live and compete and made increased survival chances for those who did believe. "
 
The important thing here is that they all claim to have communicated with God. (3) outright dismisses mystic experience (I'm assuming you mean mystic experience, not textual which is a whole different ballgame since you can directly examine texts). Outrighting dismissing something that a variety of people from basically every culture under every sort of circumstance and every sort of age have experience is quite frankly, not very smart. Mystic experience exists. (3) is saying it does not result in the truth (like a mirage). I would then ask: Which experience does result in the truth? And how does one know it does?
 
Cheers.

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Breece6 replied...
Aug. 30, 2012 at 9:34 am

 
Destinee:
 
I'm not claiming it didn't exist with 3, I'm just claiming it was something other than what they thought it was :P
 
Experience results in the "truth" (keep in mind the truth is really just an extremely educated guess) when it has been cross checked and reviewed by objective sources that have no bias and find similar results.  Preferrably crosschecked more than once too, that's how it's usually done :)

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half.noteThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Aug. 30, 2012 at 9:47 am

 
Breece:
 
This post is long overdue, but here it is:
 
1. Destinee is Muslim and I'm pretty sure they only view Jesus as a prophet and not a Saviour, but I guess you can still ask her about this one. I'm not sure what she'd say, though.
Besides, I like winning an argument. ;)
 
2. You may have misunderstood me. God was as merciful for those sinful nations as for the Israelites. Jesus died for the wicked as well as the righteous. Those people had their chance to follow God, but they rejected Him.
This is like saying it’s wrong to punish a thief for his crimes.
And God didn’t choose the Israelites to conquer other nations. He chose them to represent his character:
“But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:” (1 Peter 2:9)
 
But I guess I can see what you’re saying. From an objective standpoint, the Old Testament doesn’t look that great. But the Bible is not just any old history book, it is the Word of God.
 
3. Slaves were a common thing back then. It is a logical fallacy that new ideas are always better than old ideas. Just because we don’t have slaves now, doesn’t mean it was wrong back then.
 
I followed your suggestion and looked up some verses about slavery on Google:
“Thou shalt not rule over him with rigour; but shalt fear thy God.
Both thy bondmen, and thy bondmaids, which thou shalt have, shall be of the heathen that are round about you; of them shall ye buy bondmen and bondmaids.
Moreover of the children of the strangers that do sojourn among you, of them shall ye buy, and of their families that are with you, which they begat in your land: and they shall be your possession.” (Leviticus 25:43-45)
“Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal; knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven.” (Colossians 4:1)
“Servants, be obedient to them that are your masters according to the flesh, with fear and trembling, in singleness of your heart, as unto Christ;
And, ye masters, do the same things unto them, forbearing threatening: knowing that your Master also is in heaven; neither is there respect of persons with him.” (Ephesians 6:5,9)
 
God bless. <3

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half.noteThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. replied...
Aug. 30, 2012 at 9:59 am

 
Breece:
 
I also wanted to respond to the topic you brought up about “the true religion”
 
I am leaning towards #1 for my answer.
There is only one God and only one truth. So there is only one true religion.
But that’s not to say that other religions don’t have parts of the truth.
 
As to if they have true communication with God, I guess it’s hard to say. Anybody can talk to God if they have an open and sincere heart. We are all sinners, even those who are following the “true religion”.
But in some religions (and denominations) their ideas are so warped that the God they are praying to isn’t even the true God. I think that in those cases, they can be given the illusion that they are in communication with God.

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