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Old 07-06-2001, 06:42 PM   #51
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Clearly when God gave the prophesies, He was able to give them because He knew that Christ would in the future choose to die on the cross.</font>
In your efforts to explain Xst's free will, you have just described predestination.

The fact is, omniscience and free will are mutually exclusive.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">You're good a turning agreement into an accusation.</font>
That's an interesting way of looking at it. I was merely following the theology to its next logical step.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">"That servant who knows his master's will and does not get ready or does not do what his master wants will be beaten with many blows. But the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows."
- Jesus (Luke 12:47-48)</font>
(Side note: "Servant" is more accurately translated "slave." Jesus condones slavery. But this should not be difficult to swallow if you find religicide acceptable.)

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">It is clear Jesus is talking about judgement, it seems that whatever else it might be: it will be entirely fair and take everything into account.</font>
So the Philistines who never even heard of JHWH, lived in a way that was wicked in his eyes (but didn't know it), and died long before Xst was an itch in his daddy's pants "will be beaten with few blows"?

Yeah. That's fair.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">I think all that really changed with the New Covenant was that we gained knowledge of how God puts people right with him. (Romans 3, 5, 8)</font>
I think you need to familiarize yourself with your own holy book. Men could take all the wives they wanted under the old law, but are limited to one in the new. Animal sacrifices and phallic altars went the way of the dinosaur. God stopped showing himself to man (must be a result of the more stringent laws these days). The age of miracles is past. Religious wars are no longer condoned...nay, commanded...so no more virgins for booty (pun). The rules changed completely.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">'The Lord says, "The time is coming when I will make a new covenant....I will forgive their sins and will no longer remember their wrongs. I the Lord have spoken"' (Jeremiah 32:31-34)</font>
A just god would have done this in the first place, not dangled it out there like the proverbial carrot to say, "See how nice I can be? Except, by the way, you won't live to see it. Tough luck."

But why would he need to change the rules, except he changed his mind about what made him happy?

But this conversation is quickly becoming quite circular, huh? I say he changed the rules, you say he fulfilled a promise. I say the promise wouldn't have been necessary had he not changed his mind about what it would take to make his creations right again with himself.

I say you pick and choose what you'll believe from the bible based on what you've already decided is the truth, which is a decidedly illogical method of ascertaining truth. This fact seems to escape you.

I recommend that you read the Koran. But first, you must accept that there is only one god, and Muhammed is his prophet.

d
 
Old 07-06-2001, 08:26 PM   #52
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Diana,

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Christ at that stage only had one choice, yes: To choose freely what he chose.

Someone please remind me why I'm arguing with a person who can say this with a straight face.

Clearly when God gave the prophesies, He was able to give them because He knew that Christ would in the future choose to die on the cross.

In your efforts to explain Xst's free will, you have just described predestination.</font>
Got it in one: Yes I have. Free will and predestination exist together, as they are complementary things. I'll take it that you don't understand this given that you don't understand my top statement.
Free will is not the opposite of predestination. If you can't understand this then you won't understand what I'm saying.
I really do recommend you go read the threads I suggested as they should give you some idea as to how it works.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">The fact is, omniscience and free will are mutually exclusive.</font>
The fact is they are not.
That sort of thing doesn't get us anywhere fast does it?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">(Side note: "Servant" is more accurately translated "slave." Jesus condones slavery. But this should not be difficult to swallow if you find religicide acceptable.)</font>
No, not difficult to swallow at all, after all I'm a really evil person who finds the most evil things acceptable.

Jesus accepts the Old Testament laws as God given. They do condone slavery. But it is nothing like that "slavery" that we think of. If a master went so far as to knock out a slaves tooth, the slave legally had to be set free. And of course there wasn't the negro racial inferiority that we associate with slavery today. I strongly suspect the practice of biblical "slavery" had been continued and the practice had not degenerated then slavery would still be around today.
Certainly I'm prepared to condemn modern slavery all you like as "evil" and foam at the mouth right along side everyone else, but the slavery as supported by the Jewish Law is pretty harmless. Of course it is in breach of the modern ideals of what individualistic human rights are, but I'm not about to start caring about those.

More later
-Tercel
 
Old 07-06-2001, 09:08 PM   #53
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Ok, let me get in on this action. There are laws that the Torah says will be on the books forever. Let's look at a few of them:

Yahweh establishes the Aaronic priesthood forever:

Exodus 29:9: Aaron and his sons...they shall have the priesthood by a permanent statute. So you shall ordain Aaron and his sons. See also Num 10:2-8, 18:8.

This is particularly important:

Numbers 25:10-13: Then the Lord spoke to Moses saying, "Phineahas the son of Elezar, the son of Aaron the priest, has turned my wrath away from the sons of Israel, in that he was jealous with my jealousy among them, so that I did not destroy teh sons of Israel in my jealousy. Therefore say, 'Behold, I give him my covenant of peace; and it shall be for him and his descendants after him, a covenant of a permanent priesthood because he was jealous for his god and made atonement for the sons of Israel in my jealousy.

So God made a covenant that the Aaronites would have "a permanent priesthood." But why do white people control the priesthood in the Catholic church?

Yom Kippur is established as a permanent statute in Lev 17: 29-34:

And this shall be a permanent statue for you: in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, you shall humble your souls and not do any work, whether the native, or the alien who sojourns among youl for it is on this day that atonement shall be made for you to cleanse you; you shall be clean from all your sins before the Lord. It is to be a sabbath of solemn rest for you, that you may humble your souls; it is a permanent statute. So the priest who is anointed and ordained to serve as priest in his father's place shall make atonement: he shall thus put on the linen garments, the holy garments, and make atonement for the holy sanctuary; and he shall make atonement for the tent of meeting and for the altar. He shall also make atonement for the priests and for all the people of the assembly. Now you shall have this as a permanent statute, to make atonement for the sons of Israel for all their sins once every year.

So does God change the meaning of "forever" too?

 
Old 07-07-2001, 10:29 AM   #54
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<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Tercel:
Free will and predestination exist together, as they are complementary things.</font>
Free will can only exist if there is a choice. "Choice" necessarily denotes the presence of two or more possible paths.

Predestination necessarily implies the lack of choice. If a person is predestined to do a certain thing, he will do it. There is no choice.

The two are not complementary. They are mutually exclusive. They cannot coexist in the same person in reference to the same action.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Me: The fact is, omniscience and free will are mutually exclusive.

You: The fact is they are not.</font>
Omniscience is knowing everything that ever has happened and ever will happen. It is knowledge without limits. If a being already knows every little thing you will do--which cannot be avoided if one is omniscient--you really don't have a choice, whether you think you do or not.

No choice=predestination, and predestination, as I've already pointed out, is mutually exclusive with free will.

Simple.

Now make your case.

&gt;Jesus accepts the Old Testament laws as God given. They do condone slavery. But it is nothing like that "slavery" that we think of.

Please support. Where do you get the notion that a slave that has had so much as a tooth knocked out has the right to leave? Doesn't the OT say that you can beat a slave and if he lives a day or two after that, no one can do anything to you because he's your property? (Ex 21:20-21).

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">And of course there wasn't the negro racial inferiority that we associate with slavery today.</font>
Perhaps not negro inferiority, but racial, ethnic and religious inferiority. Entire races were conquered and enslaved. You confuse endentured servitude with slavery, I fear. Both existed. The former was a recognized way to pay off debts; the latter, the spoils of war. There were more stringent rules for the former--since they were Hebrews--than the latter. (Ex 21:2-8)
(Lev 25:44-46 outlines the rules for taking "the heathen" as "bondmen," and ends with "but over your brethren the children of Israel, ye shall not rule one over another with rigour.")

Read these passages and tell me again that the slavery of the OT wasn't racist.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">...the slavery as supported by the Jewish Law is pretty harmless.</font>
Again, as you enjoy telling me to arise, go forth, and read commentaries which presume to interpret your holy book, I offer my own recommendation.

Arise, go forth, and read your own holy book. Familiarize yourself with what it has to say about something before you open your mouth and commit.

I, too, have heard the old "OT/NT slavery wasn't the same as the slavery we're familiar with." I have not yet heard this supported with anything other than conjecture and wishful thinking. Indeed, your own holey book contradicts your stance outright.

At your leisure,

diana
 
Old 07-07-2001, 12:58 PM   #55
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Tercel: I think any gods which are idols are figments of the imagination.

rodahi: I think all gods are figments of the imagination.

Tercel: Thank you for that statement of faith Rodahi.

You are incorrect, Tercel. The evidence for all gods, and that includes Yahweh, is zero.

Tercel: You haved performed the admirable task of telling those readers who had not already managed to work it out that you are an atheist. Well done.

I merely agreed with you, Tercel. If you think gods are figments of the imagination, then you are as atheistic as I am.

rodahi
 
Old 07-07-2001, 05:25 PM   #56
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Grr, my computer crashed just before I finished writing this post the first time.

Firstly a brief clarification on the predestination / free will thing. I came across a mention of it in my reading today which I might as well quote.
Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">From The Goodness of God:

Biblical doctrine has the remarkable quality of being at one and the same time profoundly mysterious and pellucidly clear. At each point there are unfathomable 'antinomies' (that is complementary truths which the human mind cannot reconcile), yet both sides of the picture stand out with intense clarity. There is on the one hand the Creator, and on the other the creation, which is not part of God, nor made of any substance external to God, but 'created out of nothing'. God is transcendent and God is immanent. There is one God and three Persons. Christ is both perfect God and perfect Man. There is divine predestination and human freedom. There is corporate solidarity and individual responsibility. Our study has emphasized yet another of these antinomies: the holiness of God and the love of God.</font>
The question of divine predestination and human freedom ranks right along side these other paradoxes like the Trinity.
It is not simple to understand, and I don't pretend to understand it completely. I have some insight into how it might work, yet conveying that to you is extremely difficult and I am not good at explaining things at the best of times. That is why I really really suggest you read (if you haven't already) the threads I mentioned above as I appear to have had a limited success explaining it there.
But lacking a complete explaination, the best I can do is probably like the other difficult doctrines to say "it appears that this is the way things are" are leave it at that.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">It is clear Jesus is talking about judgement, it seems that whatever else it might be: it will be entirely fair and take everything into account.

So the Philistines who never even heard of JHWH, lived in a way that was wicked in his eyes (but didn't know it), and died long before Xst was an itch in his daddy's pants "will be beaten with few blows"?

Yeah. That's fair.</font>
Yowlch! Remind me not to let you loose on Bible interpretation again.
The slave Jesus talks about has done something deserving of punishment. If the master's will is not known and the slave does not obey his masters unknown will then by anyone's standards he clearly does not deserve punishment for this. So the thing deserving of punishment that the slave has done must have been clearly been something the slave knew was wrong.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">I think you need to familiarize yourself with your own holy book. Men could take all the wives they wanted under the old law, but are limited to one in the new.</font>
Did I miss something? The only limitation of wives I can think of that occurs in the New Testament, is Paul's statements that Church leaders are to only have one wife.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Animal sacrifices and phallic altars went the way of the dinosaur.</font>
Phallic altars? Didn't they go the way of the dinosaur from the very beginning of the OT?
True about animal sacrifices I suppose. Although that was mainly a result of the destruction of the temple. Is there actually any passage in the New Testestament which says not to make animal sacrifices?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">God stopped showing himself to man (must be a result of the more stringent laws these days).</font>
?? I think you need to clarify this one.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">The age of miracles is past.</font>
?? Sure there were a large number of miracles accompanying the Exodus, the time of Elijah, and the time of Jesus and the early Church. God gives a lot of miracles in times when it is necessary to reveal His power, so what? If you're trying to say "no miracles ever happen now", then I'm sure you can see the problems with such an omniscient statement. -Especially when there are such a large number of alledged miracles worldwide - have you checked all or even any of them out?
There was a woman at my Church recently (ie 3 or 4 months ago) who had extremely serious (I think it was terminal) cancer. She asked someone to pray for her at the end of a service and she saw a vision of her being healed. The person praying for her also told her at the same time that God had healed her. Lo and behold, in a few days time when she went to the hospital for treatment there was no trace whatsoever of the cancer.
I realise that sometimes cancers vanish all but instantly in patients and it is a recognised phenomina (although I do occasionally wonder if it is simply a scientific naming of "miracle") and I would certainly consider such an explanation as a possibility if people were praying long term for her and one day she recovered. However the fact that she and the person praying in Church for her spontaneously thought her healed and at the very next check up she was found to be healed is pushing the bounds of probability just a little bit. I am not into crying "miracle" left right and centre, and I certainly don't approve of anyone who does so, yet to me that appears by far the most obvious explanation of events. I accept that you won't believe a miracle happened here, but please you accept that you are in no real position to make any blanket statements about the non-existence of miracles in the present day.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">I say you pick and choose what you'll believe from the bible based on what you've already decided is the truth, which is a decidedly illogical method of ascertaining truth. This fact seems to escape you.</font>
I firstly believe in the resurrection of Jesus. Certain things follow from that and certain things follow from those. I don't see how that is illogical.
As far as picking and choosing goes, I don't really do very much at all. Basically I believe the whole Bible and only toss any parts which a really causing problems with the rest. Most of the contradictions and harmonisation problems are historical ones (which aren't really a problem as in most cases they don't matter), and there are comparatively few doctrinal ones (which are the ones which really matter). Even most of the doctrinal errors which are contradictions normally give insight when you spend some thought on them. eg Paul says that faith alone saves whereas James says that faith and good works are required to save. It is a flat out contradiction of doctrine, and presumably we must toss one and keep the other. Yet in another way there is something to be learned from both points and although they are contradictory it is in fact more educational to keep both.
So apart from the factual contradictions like whether 23000 or 24000 people were killed in a battle (which nobody actually cares two figs about) I don't actually do much tossing at all and pretty much take the Bible as it stands.
But as I am not a inerrantist so I have the ability to toss where necessary and don't get excessively worried when the writers of Kings and Chronicles disagree of how many chariots and horses King Solomon had in his stables.

-Tercel
 
Old 07-07-2001, 05:29 PM   #57
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'If he [a master] knocks out a tooth [of his slave], he is to free the slave as payment for the tooth.' (Exodus 21:27)
 
Old 07-08-2001, 04:36 AM   #58
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Tercel:
Grr, my computer crashed just before I finished writing this post the first time.

Firstly a brief clarification on the predestination / free will thing. I came across a mention of it in my reading today which I might as well quote.
Quote:
From The Goodness of God:

Biblical doctrine has the remarkable quality of being at one and the same time profoundly mysterious and pellucidly clear. At each point there are unfathomable 'antinomies' (that is complementary truths which the human mind cannot reconcile), yet both sides of the picture stand out with intense clarity. There is on the one hand the Creator, and on the other the creation, which is not part of God, nor made of any substance external to God, but 'created out of nothing'. God is transcendent and God is immanent. There is one God and three Persons. Christ is both perfect God and perfect Man. There is divine predestination and human freedom. There is corporate solidarity and individual responsibility. Our study has emphasized yet another of these antinomies: the holiness of God and the love of God.</font>
The question of divine predestination and human freedom ranks right along side these other paradoxes like the Trinity.
It is not simple to understand, and I don't pretend to understand it completely. I have some insight into how it might work, yet conveying that to you is extremely difficult and I am not good at explaining things at the best of times. That is why I really really suggest you read (if you haven't already) the threads I mentioned above as I appear to have had a limited success explaining it there.
But lacking a complete explaination, the best I can do is probably like the other difficult doctrines to say "it appears that this is the way things are" are leave it at that.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">It is clear Jesus is talking about judgement, it seems that whatever else it might be: it will be entirely fair and take everything into account.

So the Philistines who never even heard of JHWH, lived in a way that was wicked in his eyes (but didn't know it), and died long before Xst was an itch in his daddy's pants "will be beaten with few blows"?

Yeah. That's fair.</font>
Yowlch! Remind me not to let you loose on Bible interpretation again.
The slave Jesus talks about has done something deserving of punishment. If the master's will is not known and the slave does not obey his masters unknown will then by anyone's standards he clearly does not deserve punishment for this. So the thing deserving of punishment that the slave has done must have been clearly been something the slave knew was wrong.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">I think you need to familiarize yourself with your own holy book. Men could take all the wives they wanted under the old law, but are limited to one in the new.</font>
Did I miss something? The only limitation of wives I can think of that occurs in the New Testament, is Paul's statements that Church leaders are to only have one wife.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Animal sacrifices and phallic altars went the way of the dinosaur.</font>
Phallic altars? Didn't they go the way of the dinosaur from the very beginning of the OT?
True about animal sacrifices I suppose. Although that was mainly a result of the destruction of the temple. Is there actually any passage in the New Testestament which says not to make animal sacrifices?

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">God stopped showing himself to man (must be a result of the more stringent laws these days).</font>
?? I think you need to clarify this one.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">The age of miracles is past.</font>
?? Sure there were a large number of miracles accompanying the Exodus, the time of Elijah, and the time of Jesus and the early Church. God gives a lot of miracles in times when it is necessary to reveal His power, so what? If you're trying to say "no miracles ever happen now", then I'm sure you can see the problems with such an omniscient statement. -Especially when there are such a large number of alledged miracles worldwide - have you checked all or even any of them out?
There was a woman at my Church recently (ie 3 or 4 months ago) who had extremely serious (I think it was terminal) cancer. She asked someone to pray for her at the end of a service and she saw a vision of her being healed. The person praying for her also told her at the same time that God had healed her. Lo and behold, in a few days time when she went to the hospital for treatment there was no trace whatsoever of the cancer.
I realise that sometimes cancers vanish all but instantly in patients and it is a recognised phenomina (although I do occasionally wonder if it is simply a scientific naming of "miracle") and I would certainly consider such an explanation as a possibility if people were praying long term for her and one day she recovered. However the fact that she and the person praying in Church for her spontaneously thought her healed and at the very next check up she was found to be healed is pushing the bounds of probability just a little bit. I am not into crying "miracle" left right and centre, and I certainly don't approve of anyone who does so, yet to me that appears by far the most obvious explanation of events. I accept that you won't believe a miracle happened here, but please you accept that you are in no real position to make any blanket statements about the non-existence of miracles in the present day.

Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">I say you pick and choose what you'll believe from the bible based on what you've already decided is the truth, which is a decidedly illogical method of ascertaining truth. This fact seems to escape you.</font>
I firstly believe in the resurrection of Jesus. Certain things follow from that and certain things follow from those. I don't see how that is illogical.
As far as picking and choosing goes, I don't really do very much at all. Basically I believe the whole Bible and only toss any parts which a really causing problems with the rest. Most of the contradictions and harmonisation problems are historical ones (which aren't really a problem as in most cases they don't matter), and there are comparatively few doctrinal ones (which are the ones which really matter). Even most of the doctrinal errors which are contradictions normally give insight when you spend some thought on them. eg Paul says that faith alone saves whereas James says that faith and good works are required to save. It is a flat out contradiction of doctrine, and presumably we must toss one and keep the other. Yet in another way there is something to be learned from both points and although they are contradictory it is in fact more educational to keep both.
So apart from the factual contradictions like whether 23000 or 24000 people were killed in a battle (which nobody actually cares two figs about) I don't actually do much tossing at all and pretty much take the Bible as it stands.
But as I am not a inerrantist so I have the ability to toss where necessary and don't get excessively worried when the writers of Kings and Chronicles disagree of how many chariots and horses King Solomon had in his stables.

-Tercel
Tercel
When we talk about the inconsistencies in the Bible, errors, unlikely premises, you
say that as a Christian that you "dont sweat
the small stuff" (paraphrasing).

I understand this attitude from someone who
has "Faith", and to a degree the actual written words of the Bible would not effect
your "Faith" in the system of Christianity,
nor would it effect your belief in an almighty God.

I have listened to many Christians explain
that they dont really care if the Bible contains, truth as we define it or perceive it, because the important ideas are based on their personal belief that Jesus was crucified, died, and was resurrected as atonement for the sins of mankind.

At least you are consistant in your statements and you are able to dispose of
questionable material contained in the Bible.

Some of the Atheists and Agnostics I know
were devoted Christians at one point, but through education, and realistic thinking and reasoning, they concluded that the document in question could not have recorded "real" events.

I personally stand firmly with Don Morgan.
" If the Bible were really the work of a perfect and loving God, it would be obviously superlative in every respect to anything that could be conceived by human intellect alone.
It would be accurate,clear,consise and consistent."

"In addition because the Bible reflects every important belief of traditional Christianity, the foundation of christianity
itself rests on shaky ground".

There are a few of us who could not accept the church's and the clergy's standard
response to questions of the validity of Biblical text by the "God works in mysterious
ways, and mankind does not have the capability to understand the divine works of God."

Faith is the corner stone of christianity.
But faith in what?
I would expect that the Almighty God being the source for everything good and moral,
would never deceive, or engage in questionable ethics.
Yet the Old Testament is filled with deceptions that God perpetrated on mankind.

Killing of innocent bystanders simply because they were in the way of the wrath of
this all-powerful Being.

Punishments not fitting the severity of the so-called infractions.

But when christian clergy is faced for an explanation of these horrors, they say that was the old testament, there is a new covenant with God established by Jesus.

I dont feel we can make a seperation between the old and the New.
Either you accept the Biblical text or you dont.

If there is one deception, one questionable
act or one punishment not fitting the infraction it points out that God is not truthful all the time.

And by the simple fact of his nature as it is portrayed by clergy, any act inconsistent
with good moral conduct or perceived as
untruthful, calls into question the whole premise of this being and the belief system
is undermined by deception.
 
Old 07-09-2001, 06:53 AM   #59
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by Tercel:
'If he [a master] knocks out a tooth [of his slave], he is to free the slave as payment for the tooth.' (Exodus 21:27)</font>
Thank you, Tercel.

Two points: you ignored my refutation of your claims AND this falls in a chapter in which rules for Hebrew slaves (i.e., indentured servants) are being laid down.

So thanks for furthering my point.

d

By the way, I still wonder by what criteria you have determined that your god is the right one to the exclusion of all others.
 
Old 07-09-2001, 08:15 AM   #60
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Quote:
<font face="Verdana, Arial" size="2">Originally posted by diana:

By the way, I still wonder by what criteria you have determined that your god is the right one to the exclusion of all others.
</font>
Ahem.... uh, cuz the Bible says so?

 
 

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