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Old 03-16-2001, 12:33 PM   #1
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Post Serious question for those who believe the Bible

The Bronze and Iron Ages are full of wonderful and fantastic stories of the supernatural, what makes you think the Hebrew tales are real and not the others?
The Egyptians have stories of when the sun rose in the west & set in the east, The Sumerians tell of half man half fish people who came out of the sea in the daytime to teach humans lessons in civilization, the Hebrews claim a superhuman entity parted a sea so they could walk away from Egypt. Archaeologists have found the remains of what the people who built the pyramids had for dinner 4500 years ago but nothing from 600,000 people living in the desert for 40 years. Why do you believe these myths & not the others???
 
Old 03-16-2001, 02:57 PM   #2
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You know, when I saw the heading of this thread I was seriously skeptical of it actually being a serious question... it just goes to show that sometimes skepticism on religious matters is justified.

As to the supposed question, I think that if Marduck bothered to look he would find plenty of archeological evidence of the Isralites in the desert. Also Marduck, if it makes you feel better the Bible says that it was a strong wind (sent by God) that parted the sea. So you can believe that the event actually happened without believing in God if you wish...
 
Old 03-16-2001, 04:17 PM   #3
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While were at it...

What about the 200 or so "other" world religions? Most have religious texts and
most believe their texts and religions were "divinely" inspired. So how do you know
your in the right one? (less than .5% chance of picking the correct one)

Almost all have had divine events too...
Islam had Mohammed who spoke to God on the way to Mecca. The Mormons have
Joseph Smith who had a similar divine revelation. Even the Native Americans speak
of seeing or of having such spiritual events--hence the divinely inspired Ghost Dance.

Then we have flavors of Christianity who all put their own spin on it and think their way is the only way. (but they in-fight and can't agree with each other)

Could go on and on...

We even have the myths of Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy! In all honesty I think I have gotten more out of the last three than any of the other systems!

 
Old 03-16-2001, 05:26 PM   #4
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It must be an *extremely* strong wind to part the Red Sea, so I'll put that story on the level with the divine interventions in the Trojan War. And there is a distinct lack of archeological evidence for the Exodus and the wanderings in Sinai -- what does Tercel claim as evidence?

Marduck has *very* good points -- why believe in the miracles of the Bible but not those of other religions? Why believe in the miracles of Jesus Christ but not those of Apollonius of Tyana? Why believe in the divine paternity of Jesus Christ but not the divine paternity of Pythagoras or Alexander the Great?
 
Old 03-16-2001, 05:41 PM   #5
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Isn't it funny, folks, that all the miracles, prophetic visions and divine revelations are always in the Past Tense? Why aren't they happening now? A sudden reduction of JehoVacuumCleaner's potency? Right, we know the answers: tests of the days before the Second Coming, a fall from grace which makes us unworthy of miracles, etc etc etc.

Why can't Deus Omnipotens have left us all in the Garden of Eden without all that snake/fruit, blood atonement on cross, tribulation, second coming nonsense? Why take all the trouble? If Deus is Omnipotens, with a flick of the finger he can rid the world of all evil. The troubles he takes to do so says much about his omnipotence. Indeed JehoVacuumCleaner is OmnImPotent!
 
Old 03-16-2001, 08:46 PM   #6
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by lpetrich:
And there is a distinct lack of archeological evidence for the Exodus and the wanderings in Sinai -- what does Tercel claim as evidence?</font>
I suggest you look into the writings found in the Wadi Mukatteb Valley in the Sinai... if that isn't proof I don't know what is. (If you don't have any idea what I'm talking about look up Wadi Mukatteb on a search engine and you'll find plenty of info)
Also worth investigation is the writings found on tombs on top of Sarbut-el-Khadem in the Sinai. The Bedouin call it "the graveyard of the Jews", and it seems likely to be Kibroth-Hattaavah.
The whole region is also known for immense numbers of quail often found there... but the fact that the Bible records large numbers of quail is probably incidental...

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Marduck has *very* good points -- why believe in the miracles of the Bible but not those of other religions? Why believe in the miracles of Jesus Christ but not those of Apollonius of Tyana? Why believe in the divine paternity of Jesus Christ but not the divine paternity of Pythagoras or Alexander the Great?</font>
Please don't ask silly questions. I believe in the miracles of the Bible because: They often have multiple attestations; Many other parts of the Bible have been shown to be historically correct; Many accounts in the Bible were written by those who saw the miracles; The Bible has been well preserved; The miracles always have a reason... etc etc.
I don't rule out the possibility of miracles occuring elsewhere that are not recorded in the Bible. But until I see reasonable evidence that they are miracles I will not consider them as such. Apollonius, Pythagoras, Alexander all do not meet a reasonable standard of evidence for me to consider them divine or to have performed miracles. I am quite sure that if I came along to this forum and started a thread claiming I believed that Alexander was divine there would be many helful people pointing out (with good reason) why I wrong.
 
Old 03-16-2001, 09:07 PM   #7
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Thomas:
[B]What about the 200 or so "other" world religions? Most have religious texts and
most believe their texts and religions were "divinely" inspired. So how do you know
your in the right one? (less than .5% chance of picking the correct one)</font>
Um, you seem to be forgetting that you also have a .5% chance when picking that none of them are correct.
Not that I know much about the issue, but do a very large number of other world religions actually have divinely inspired texts? The idea of writing was (as far as I know) foriegn to most non-european races until relatively recently, have there been a huge number of religious texts written in that time?

I have a tendency to agree with CS Lewis in saying that there are only 3 main world religions: Christianity, Hinduism, and polytheism/paganism. The third is not practiced today in any form that anyone would take seriously. Christianity and Hinduism seem to be the only 2 real full religions and I would agree with Lewis again in saying that all other religions are just heresies of these. Islam simply being the biggest Christian heresy and Buddhism the biggest Hindu one.
So as far as I can see the choice comes down to Christianity, Hinduism, some sort of vague deism, or Atheism. I think everyone can manage to choose between 4 choices without hurting their brains too much.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Almost all have had divine events too...
Islam had Mohammed who spoke to God on the way to Mecca. The Mormons have
Joseph Smith who had a similar divine revelation. Even the Native Americans speak
of seeing or of having such spiritual events--hence the divinely inspired Ghost Dance. </font>
Well they'd hardly be religions if they didn't have divine revelation of some sort, would they?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Then we have flavors of Christianity who all put their own spin on it and think their way is the only way. (but they in-fight and can't agree with each other)</font>
Doesn't it say something that Christianity has so many derivatives compared to other religions? Why should they agree with each other when they believe different things? When two scientists disagree does anyone say "why don't you just agree and make the world a happier place?"??? No of course not, nobody is that stupid. The same applies with religion, but apparently people are that stupid here.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">We even have the myths of Santa Clause, the Easter Bunny, and the Tooth Fairy! In all honesty I think I have gotten more out of the last three than any of the other systems!</font>
Um, you wouldn't actually have Santa Clause or Easter Bunny if not for Christianity... Tooth Fairy I'm not sure about, but for me she's by far the least of the three.

[Edited to fix Hindu and Buddhist mix up]

[This message has been edited by Tercel (edited March 16, 2001).]
 
Old 03-16-2001, 09:28 PM   #8
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How exactly would Hinduism be a heresy of Buddhism, when Hindu is the oldest religion in existence and Siddhartha himself was a Hindu?
 
Old 03-16-2001, 10:54 PM   #9
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by oriecat:
How exactly would Hinduism be a heresy of Buddhism, when Hindu is the oldest religion in existence and Siddhartha himself was a Hindu?</font>
Sorry, I got Hinduism and Buddhism around the wrong way... I've fixed it up now.
 
Old 03-16-2001, 11:23 PM   #10
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Tercel

Emails with biblical historians suggests that there is no corroborating evidence outside of the Bible that there was an exodus of Jews from Egypt; evidence suggests that the Egyptians did not use horses or chariots in warfare until the war with the Hittites; emails with biblical historians/archaeologists show that the NAME Nazareth was not used for any Jewish location/site/settlement/village/town/city/etc., and there is testimony that the current town of Nazareth did not assume the NAME Nazareth until 400 CE, a clear indication that, again, the NAME Nazareth was not used for a Jewish location/site/etc. in the alleged time of Jesus, certainly a serious problem for the historical testimony of the Bible; and the numerous biblical contradictions and false prophecies are a clear indication that the Bible contains a serious amount of fictions and should therefore be seriously doubted as a source of theological information.

Believing in miracles because

1. "They often have multiple attestations" raises the question of whether or not multiple liars might be giving testimony.
2. "Many other parts of the Bible have been shown to be historically correct" raises the question of how to interpret the fact that other parts of the Bible are not historically correct (exodus, Nazareth, etc.).
3. "Many accounts in the Bible were written by those who saw the miracles" raises the question of proving the authenticity of biblical writers.
4. "The Bible has been well preserved" raises the question of why we do not have any original manuscripts and whether or not there are serious errors or interpolations in copies and translations.
5. "The miracles always have a reason" raises the question of determining what are the reasons and whose reasons those reasons are.

Your words: "I don't rule out the possibility of miracles occuring elsewhere that are not recorded in the Bible. But until I see reasonable evidence that they are miracles I will not consider them as such. Apollonius, Pythagoras, Alexander all do not meet a reasonable standard of evidence for me to consider them divine or to have performed miracles."

What is your standard of evidence?

What is your standard of evidence for miracles?

What is your standard of evidence for gods?

What is your standard of evidence for holy books?

Devnet makes a telling point in his statement/question: "Isn't it funny, folks, that all the miracles, prophetic visions and divine revelations are always in the Past Tense? Why aren't they happening now?"

Why no modern miracles/prophecies/revelations?

And, finally, if your name is Tercel, are you related to the Toyotas?

[This message has been edited by Bob K (edited March 17, 2001).]
 
 

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