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OT: Information Needed From Christians
This thread has 86 replies. Displaying posts 31 through 45.
Post 31 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 21:56
Anthony
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Until that time, the church was illegal and more of an underground organization within the Roman Empire.

You are right that Christianity was illegal and underground at the start, but it stopped long before Constantine. Think of it even if he was Emperor how would an illegal underground religion manage to get to him and convert him (wouldn't any Christian be scared of him finding out)? and let's say it did happen, and Constantine wanted to change the country to Christianity why would anyone follow him? why would the army, the senate.... let him?
...
Post 32 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 22:15
Anthony
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David, QQQ seems to think that this thread is a joke or attempt to poke fun at the Christians who come here.

obviously it is a joke on religion. It is the oldest joke on monotheistic religions. If you pray to God and God listens and is on your side how come you can't win. Then again maybe he thinks Obama had the right God :)

On the other hand in my opinion Christians are Christian and the rest is just politics. And the God (even if some have some facts wrong) is the same (IMHO Muslims and Jews have the same God as Christians as well -thought I would open that can of worms).

Also this would assume that God cares who wins something (no offence) as insignificant as this US election. So I would add to QQQs

1. It could be God's will.
2. It could be God's punishment.
3. It could be our will.
4. It could be God does not care.
...
Post 33 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 22:22
GLS
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On November 5, 2008 at 21:56, Anthony said...
You are right that Christianity was illegal and underground
at the start, but it stopped long before Constantine.
Think of it even if he was Emperor how would an illegal
underground religion manage to get to him and convert
him (wouldn't any Christian be scared of him finding out)?
and let's say it did happen, and Constantine wanted to
change the country to Christianity why would anyone follow
him? why would the army, the senate.... let him?

Legend has it that he saw a cross in the sky and heard the words,"By this sign conquer."
Again, legend. But I think that Constantine saw that he was not going to wipe out Christianity, and decided to go with the flow. Just because he made Christianity the official state religion doesn't mean that he really believed and or practiced it. I have read that he continued in paganism though the Empire changed to Christianity. He was Emperor remember? The Army and Senate would probably go along to save their butts, and what did they care? Pagans incorporated new gods as they went along, and even the Roman gods were a mix of Greek gods and others they had come across in their conquests. Also, his word was law. If he said that Christianity was now the state religion, who was going to protest? I think the persecutions had probably stopped by then, but legal status had yet to be obtained. I'll have to go look it up to be sure.
www.GordonsLight.com
"As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another" Proverbs 27:17
Post 34 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 22:28
Mr. Stanley
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I am an atheist also. Am I right? I have no clue, I just see a lot of damage done with a lot of large organized religions through the ages. I have beliefs, but not Biblical.
I am interested how just about every group of people develop some sort of belief system. It is also amazing the complexity of some of the various religious stories, be them Christian, Muslim, Eastern etc.
We all seem to have a need to develop some sort of belief system in order to help manage our societies, and to try and keep these groups civil.
It seems like a lot of the religions all have this sort of "BigBrother" that watches our steps and mis-steps and monitor or deeds and stores them on a big cosmic hard drive - so when we pass-on, we have to sit down and get a "personal inventory" review to determine whether we take the up elevator or the down elevator.
Heck we were even told Santa Claus kept an eye on us so we had to be good if we wanted gifts!
Even the most primitive tribes have these "system" of belief and an icon or Priest they must serve. Dylan wrote a song called "Ya Gotta Serve Someone" and rattled off numerous and the bottom line is, there is just something in our wiring that we need to plug into.

The other equally interesting thing to me, is how devout and for the lack of a better term -- how some religions, take on the form of Mind Control, where followers seem to shut down certain behavioral and reasoning faculties, in the name of "believing".
Snake handling, terrorism, commit suicide (Jim Jones and that other group a few years ago) drinking poison, killing those who they deem the bad guys, talking in tongues, and giving money to these southern ministers with the big-hair, and creating "holy lands" or territories.

The Same goes for politics, as was evidenced here where you had a clear division of beliefs and ideologies with each side feeling they were the better of the two. I was reflecting on that today, and how people can take leave of the senses, and whipped into a passion.

I know it is cliche' as heck, but it's sort of like we all have to have SOMETHING to believe in, as a crutch or means of adding sense to our lives, and when you boil down the majority of the religions out there, they all pretty much (for the most part) are structured to encourage doing the right thing, moderation, decency, control of greed, thankfulness, humility, and all that junk.

There are a lot of very scary religious beliefs out there as well, and it never ceases to amaze me how people can get sucked into some of these groups.

Even AA suggests there is a "Higher Power" (they try to avoid the GOD word" so as not to freak out atheists.

When politicians bring their strong religious beliefs into the fold, then for every action good or bad, they can write that off to God or Allah, as if to justify their mortal actions -- by putting an all-mighty immortal spin on things and that is when it can get a little scary.

Last edited by Mr. Stanley on November 5, 2008 22:45.
"If it keeps up, man will atrophy all his limbs but the push-button finger."
Frank Lloyd Wright
Post 35 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 22:28
Mr. Stanley
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'Doh, double post.

Last edited by Mr. Stanley on November 5, 2008 22:47.
"If it keeps up, man will atrophy all his limbs but the push-button finger."
Frank Lloyd Wright
Post 36 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 22:41
GLS
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On November 5, 2008 at 21:03, Dean Roddey said...

If you study the history of religion it's hard to ignore
the fact that its purely a human creation, which has mutated
so many times as to be almost innumerable at this point

You are right, religion is mostly man-made, it mutates and changes with the whim of its creators, particularly secular humanism and other offshoots of "man is the sum of all" kinds of outlooks. But I am not talking about religion(s), I am talking about a relationship with the living God of history. The fact that YOU don't believe something doesn't make it false, nor does it make it "mythology". The word "hell" has been twisted over the years especially in the Middle Ages through art etc, but Jesus used the word "Gehenna" and was alluding to a garbage dump outside of Jerusalem. It was a visual image that would drive home His point about being shut out of the kingdom of heaven, as place where the rubbish was thrown, the fires never went out, and the worms and decay ate the garbage. That is a frightening image. The Jews used the word, "Sheol" and it referred to the grave. The Bible doesn't say a lot about the afterlife in Jewish theology, but the two ideas are not disparate. Non-scriptural writings of the Jews refer to the idea of the righteous and un-righteous dead, and of punishments and rewards for your deeds in life.
www.GordonsLight.com
"As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another" Proverbs 27:17
Post 37 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 23:02
Dean Roddey
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The fact that YOU don't believe something doesn't make it false,
nor does it make it "mythology".

But I never claimed it was because I don't believe in it. I said it was mythology because it's clearly a man made story, the separate components of which were taken from various other influences over time, not the written down word of a super-being.

Anyway, in the end, your statement is backwards. The correct statement is that belief in something doesn't make it true. Proof of something makes it true. Until it's proven, you can't claim it as fact.

If I claim that something is true, then the burden is on me to prove it's true if I'm going to make that claim. But, for some reason, with religion, it always seems to be the other way around, that it's the burden of everyone else to disprove it. I've never understood how that gets turned around like that.

If you can claim it's true without proof, because lots of people believe it, then Islam is als true and Bhuddism is also true and so forth.
Dean Roddey
Chairman/CTO, Charmed Quark Systems
www.charmedquark.com
Post 38 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 23:06
Mr. Stanley
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The Power of Suggestion.
"If it keeps up, man will atrophy all his limbs but the push-button finger."
Frank Lloyd Wright
Post 39 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 23:08
GLS
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It IS interesting how far this thread has gotten from the original question.

Stanley says,
"The other equally interesting thing to me, is how devout and for the lack of a better term -- how some religions, take on the form of Mind Control, where followers seem to shut down certain behavioral and reasoning faculties, in the name of "believing".
Snake handling, terrorism, commit suicide (Jim Jones and that other group a few years ago) drinking poison, killing those who they deem the bad guys, talking in tongues, and giving money to these southern ministers with the big-hair, and creating "holy lands" or territories. "

Would SOMEONE explain to me your fascination with snake-handling?!!! What does talking in tongues have to do with any of this? Have you EVER HEARD someone talk in tongues Stanley? You mention Jim Jones, but does anyone mention that comet cult that committed suicide so they could catch the comet to their home planet, paradise, whatever? And the difference in giving money to big haired preachers and slimy politicians is what?

Is it totally strange that God would hold you accountable for your actions?

Stanley says,
"I know it is cliche' as heck, but it's sort of like we all have to have SOMETHING to believe in, as a crutch or means of adding sense to our lives, and when you boil down the majority of the religions out there, they all pretty much (for the most part) are structured to encourage doing the right thing, moderation, decency, control of greed, thankfulness, humility, and all that junk.'

Galatians 5:22-"But the fruit of the Spirit is love,joy,peace,patience,kindness,goodness faithfulness and self-control. Against such things there is no law." I think people have gotten hung up on the outward trapping of Christianity and missed the spirit. If a politician professed these qualities Stanley, would it freak you out so much? Are these bad things? I think you hit some of them in your own post.
www.GordonsLight.com
"As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another" Proverbs 27:17
Post 40 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 23:15
Dean Roddey
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If a politician professed these qualities Stanley, would it freak you
out so much? Are these bad things? I think you hit some of them
n your own post.

But those things are not unique to religion. They are just basic human values, which religions in general (though not at all always) also tend to hold, as would pretty much any modern atheist or agnostic. And it wouldn't be too hard to find quotes in the Bible about how people should do things that we would today consider horrible, like stoning people.
Dean Roddey
Chairman/CTO, Charmed Quark Systems
www.charmedquark.com
Post 41 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 23:23
GLS
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On November 5, 2008 at 23:02, Dean Roddey said...
But I never claimed it was because I don't believe in
it. I said it was mythology because it's clearly a man
made story, the separate components of which were taken
from various other influences over time, not the written
down word of a super-being.

Anyway, in the end, your statement is backwards. The correct
statement is that belief in something doesn't make it
true. Proof of something makes it true. Until it's proven,
you can't claim it as fact.

If I claim that something is true, then the burden is
on me to prove it's true if I'm going to make that claim.
But, for some reason, with religion, it always seems to
be the other way around, that it's the burden of everyone
else to disprove it. I've never understood how that gets
turned around like that.

If you can claim it's true without proof, because lots
of people believe it, then Islam is als true and Bhuddism
is also true and so forth.

It is a man-told story. There is not room enough here for all the "proof" that can be offered up to support Judaism and Christianity. Interestingly enough, God does leave in the element of faith. Righteousness was credited to Abraham because he believed God and that He exists. The biggest proof I can offer is the resurrection, something not claimed anywhere else. The proof of the resurrection, the eyewitnesses etc, has been said to outweigh the evidence for any other event in ancient times. But it boils down to a 50/50 equation, it either happened or it didn't. If it did, then you are on the hook for everything. God also says in Romans that the proof of His existence is all around and always has been, ie. creation. He feels no need to prove Himself to you my friend, but the evidence is there if you really cared to look. You will find out first hand one day as well, as we all will.

Again I say, we have missed the original question that was posed, but if we have prove Christianity before we can answer the question then we are spinning our wheels. Perhaps if a theist had asked the question?
www.GordonsLight.com
"As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another" Proverbs 27:17
Post 42 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 23:28
Dean Roddey
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The biggest proof I can offer is the resurrection, something not
claimed anywhere else. The proof of the resurrection, the
eyewitnesses etc, has been said to outweigh the evidence for
any other event in ancient times. But it boils down to a 50/50
equation, it either happened or it didn't.

But don't you see that that's not really any proof at all? For instance, the Koran says that Muhammad flew to Mecca on a winged horse, from where he ascended to heaven. Do you believe that this is true? It's no more unlikely than coming back from the dead and clearly people claim to have seen it and reported it, but I'm doubting you probably believe it.

Again, I'm not picking on you, just pointing out the issue with critical evaluation here. You offer as proof something (claimed eye witness account) which I'm pretty sure that you don't accept as proof of a similar type of event.

God also says in Romans that the proof of His existence is all around
and always has been, ie. creation.

As did probably a lot of other 'gods' that came before the Christian god. But it's not really any proof of anything, other than we seem to exist. Nothing else can logically be drawn from that.

He feels no need to prove Himself to you my friend, but the evidence is
there if you really cared to look. You will find out first hand one day as
well, as we all will.

But that's my point, there isn't. There's plenty of stuff that you can find to easily reinforce a belief you might have if you want to, but there's no proof at all, of any kind. There's not a single one. That's one of the key problems I'm trying to point out.

Again, nothing to do with you, I'm just pointing out facts.

Last edited by Dean Roddey on November 5, 2008 23:35.
Dean Roddey
Chairman/CTO, Charmed Quark Systems
www.charmedquark.com
Post 43 made on Wednesday November 5, 2008 at 23:57
39 Cent Stamp
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When i became old enough to understand (8 years old) what was being taught at the church my mother dragged me to i came to the conclusion that church, religion, my mom did not add up.

The only way to heaven is thru Jesus.

I asked..

What if your born to muslim parents? You will never have the chance to know Jesus because your going to be a muslim.

I was told..

They dont know any better so God wont send them to hell.

I asked..

Why do they get to live however they want and still get into heaven? Why do we have to go to church?

I was told..

To shut my fool mouth before i end up going to hell.

Thats when i realized it was just a story and even those who whole heartedly believe it couldnt answer any questions about it. It just doesnt add up.

My mother is an intelligent woman and she believes every word of it. Im her son, i grew up in her house and i know shes out of her mind.

My twin sister's whole world is church.. she works there!! I love her like a fat kid loves cake but i swear she cant make it 5 minutes without trying to lead me back to the light. She calls me her greatest task here on earth. We argued today when she told me she hoped Obama would get prayer back into school. I hung up on her after she tried to explain that 2 minutes of prayer in school every day would eliminate HIV.

There are those who believe and those who dont.. period.. end of story. Research is a joke. Have you guys ever played the telephone game? Now take the telephone game and stretch it over thousands of years and several languages and multiple agendas and lets see how close you get to the actual story.

I have been watching McCain call Obama a socialist for the last few weeks. Its 2008, things are documented a little better now vs. when Jesus was walking around. McCain is watching and reading and listening to the same Obama i am and for the life of me i cant figure out where hes getting the Socialist thing from. Who cares if hes a socialist.. My point is that even if my sister and i could jump in a time machine and go back to when Jesus was telling it on the mountain or whatever.. we would both walk away with a different opinion of what we heard. Can you imagine how different our book reports would be?

So lets stop measuring to see whos is bigger (mine btw) and put our energy into getting 2way from RTI.
Avid Stamp Collector - I really love 39 Cent Stamps
Post 44 made on Thursday November 6, 2008 at 00:01
mcn779
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Look at all the world religions (that I know of) except one and they all have the same thing is common. God is aloof, distant, unreachable, just outrageous and the Gods have the same weaknesses as the humans. But if I jump through enough hoops and sometimes that value is arbitrary I will - to use the term loosely - reach "nirvana". The God that I believe in is not any of the above and is very specific that to reach him is a gift from him that is available to everyone without having to do anything and since it is a gift there is nothing that I can do to loose it. But it is his desire that we all reach him because we are all his children. Not a select number of people, I don't have to wage a Jihad or go through multiple levels of reincarnation, or any kind of works of my own to receive it.

I think it was Mr. Stanley that said something about organized "religion" and mind control and I can see where you would get that opinion because those are the bastardisation that man creates of what God has given us. Look at the Biden Palin thread and you can see almost any of us that posted anything on that thread putting our own personal twist on the "facts". Again the bible is very succinct Mt 22:36 "You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the law and the prophets. If you look at the relationship between God the Father and Jesus, Jesus and the Church (us), man to wife, parents to children, the government to the people good uses the same system. God did nothing to Jesus out of anger, jealousy, or to cause harm he only did what was best (perfectly) and out of love "agape*" and because God will is perfect Jesus out of love "agape" followed them not without question but followed them because he knew that God knew best i.e. "God's will be done". This is the hierarchy that God set up for all relationships and again we as humans have managed to muck it up.


*Agapao (verb) and agape (noun). This is the "Christian love" of the Bible. It means affection, benevolence, good-will, high esteem and concern for the welfare of the one loved. It is deliberate, purposeful love rather than emotional or impulsive love. Almost all of the New Testament references to love are agapao or agape in the original Greek. The King James Version of the Bible sometimes translates agape as "charity," but charity has now taken on the meaning of assistance to the poor rather than benevolent love.

Marc
Post 45 made on Thursday November 6, 2008 at 00:21
mcn779
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There are those who believe and those who don't.. period..
end of story. Research is a joke. Have you guys ever played
the telephone game? Now take the telephone game and stretch
it over thousands of years and several languages and multiple
agendas and lets see how close you get to the actual story.

The Jews were meticulous in keeping track ot their lineage. There was no agenda other than it's accuracy. Of all the ancient writings there are more copies of the New Testament (approx. 20K) than any other and all from a period in time that is closer to when the actual events happened (100-150 years if I'm not mistaken). These question don't arise concerning Plato and there is almost 1500 years separating the time he died and the earliest available writing and there are only 7 copies of that. But we have no problem believing that Plato existed.
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