Bloody Well Right

If God is love, how do we explain the Old Testament passages where he commands the Israelites to eradicate entire groups of people, even the children (Josh 9:24; Num 31; 1 Sam 15)? Sometimes people say it was to punish these people for their evil practices, like child sacrifice. Well, child sacrifice is certainly a terrible thing. But does it make sense to punish child sacrifice by killing all the children?

Let’s think about this for a moment. When cultures engaged in child sacrifice, it’s not because they just loved killing children — it’s because they believed it served as some kind of propitiation, appeasing their gods for the greater good. So if God didn’t approve of child sacrifice, what seems like the most rational way to deal with it: (1) kill everyone, including all the children you don’t want killed, or (2) make yourself known to these people as the one true god and tell them that child sacrifice is not what you want? Wouldn’t option 2 be a win-win scenario?

Here’s something else to consider. If God didn’t like child sacrifice, why did he command Abraham to offer his son Isaac as one? Granted, he stopped the sacrifice before the boy was killed, but isn’t this a weird command for a deity who despises child sacrifice? And what about Psalm 137, where the inspired writer is lamenting Babylon’s destruction of Jerusalem and says the following:

8 O daughter of Babylon, who are to be destroyed,
     Happy the one who repays you as you have served us!
9 Happy the one who takes and dashes
     Your little ones against the rock!

Furthermore, if God wanted the Canaanites destroyed because of their heinous practices, why stop at Canaan? There were many cultures that engaged in terrible practices like this from time to time — why not send the Israelites to slaughter them all? Instead this “judgment” is only brought against people in the same geographic location that God wanted the Israelites to inhabit:

After the death of Moses the servant of the Lord, it came to pass that the Lord spoke to Joshua the son of Nun, Moses’ assistant, saying: 2 “Moses My servant is dead. Now therefore, arise, go over this Jordan, you and all this people, to the land which I am giving to them—the children of Israel. 3 Every place that the sole of your foot will tread upon I have given you, as I said to Moses. 4 From the wilderness and this Lebanon as far as the great river, the River Euphrates, all the land of the Hittites, and to the Great Sea toward the going down of the sun, shall be your territory. 5 No man shall be able to stand before you all the days of your life; as I was with Moses, so I will be with you. I will not leave you nor forsake you. 6 Be strong and of good courage, for to this people you shall divide as an inheritance the land which I swore to their fathers to give them.
— Josh 1:1-5

So they answered Joshua and said, “Because your servants were clearly told that the Lord your God commanded His servant Moses to give you all the land, and to destroy all the inhabitants of the land from before you; therefore we were very much afraid for our lives because of you, and have done this thing.”
— Josh 9:24

How strange that these passages focus on taking the land from the Canaanites and not on their evil natures…

As a final consideration, even if the only thing left to do with these evil Canaanites was kill them all, does it make sense that God would choose the cruelest and most agonizing way to do it? Instead of speaking them out of existence, or immediately striking them all dead, he has them besieged by invaders. They’re forced to watch their loved ones being massacred before being hacked to death themselves. Would God really command this?

How does a god who would command genocide on this scale differ from the vilest despots of the modern era? What’s the difference between this god and bin Laden? What’s the difference between a god like this and a devil? Could a god this bloody be right?

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446 thoughts on “Bloody Well Right”

  1. RE: “does it make sense to punish child sacrifice by killing all the children?” – I’ve had this discussion before with a theist, the answer was that their god knew in advance that the children would grow up to be evil, so he got them early.

    RE: “em>If God didn’t like child sacrifice, why did he command Abraham to offer his son Isaac as one? – I’ve had this one too, the upshot was that Abraham believed that if he obeyed his god and slaughtered Isaac, his god would resurrect Ike – no one asked the boy what HE thought of the idea.

    And you KNOW the stock answer you’re going to get from the dynamic dumb-dumbs: – god made ’em and he can do anything with them he wants —

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  2. There is an easy explanation. This is a tribal god, in fact, a family god. He is the god of Abraham, Jacob and Isaiah. It is consistent with its creators to have him/it/her command destruction of the people whose lands they want to excise.

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  3. Before that, I believe this issue are being discuss in human eye’s point of view. If we look on God’s point of view, are these issue to be read similarly in term of perspective?

    In facts, everyone/anything will die. So bloody/ car accident, or tornado is just a reason for human to die. Even, he does not command Moses, he/she still die.

    Is there any different between dying with blood shed and non-blood shed i.e poisoning, or H1N1?

    If genocide is define is killing human in mass daily. Then, everyday we see human die in hospital bed “peacefully”. Is it peacefully? Then, genocide itself is a part nature.

    In Christian’s religion view, If dying in such way “peaceful”, is that a sign of heavenly acceptance? Is it true?

    Even, I do not really answering. The relation between each issue need to be reconcile to make sure we understand in correct way.

    Makagutu,

    Every day is genocide, If dont want to die, may be you should become vampire. :p

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  4. Hifzan, tell me, for I do not know, how you know one, that a god is and secondly its point of view?
    In a naturalistic worldview, the universe is indifferent to how you die. To introduce a benevolent god into the picture requires explanation

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  5. That is my question to you, so why should I answered it. Put it as general God and Its character, and think, compare and

    Ask question as ” If God, The Most Powerful, The Most Intelligent, The Benevolent, why he do this and that.” Then compare to actual natural/environment behavior.

    Lol, I need to give a hint too? I thought Atheist like to imagine and clever. 😛

    Christian need explanation, I don’t.

    In God’s view, death is His job and it’s nature of His design.
    In human’s view, death is commonly viewed losses, sadness, and misery and of course it nature of the world.

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  6. Great summary, Nate!

    It was a critical reading of the OT that ultimately lead to my loss of faith. The god of the Old Testament presents all the vile temperaments of a human dictator—the very antithesis of an all-loving, all-merciful, all-knowing, all-just and all-powerful being.

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  7. Here is the logic behind God’s actions:

    God is all-good therefore all his actions are good.

    If God commands the death of people it is because he is ridding the world of evil.

    Of course, logic is completely opaque to atheists since to be an atheist means giving up the ability to reason.

    Consequently, instead of actually devoting some thought to understanding the nature of God, man and universe, the atheist will create an alternate god and call him evil thus justifying the atheist’s own nonbelief.

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  8. Well, I believe it should always be stated up front that this is fiction in the first place, thus avoiding any sort of discussion that could allude to considering these were factual events and thus giving any sort of credence to the crap of god-belief.

    The most striking part of this ridiculous tale is the fact Yahweh didn’t do the dirty work himself.
    He appeared quite capable of ‘nuking’ Lot’s wife yet places the burden of responsibility of the Canaanite genocide on the Israelites.

    Was it the (this) writer’s aim to make the Israelites and Yahweh seem like buddies; comrades in arms, as it were?

    It is unthinkable in context that Yahweh would need any assistance from puny humans to enact any sort of slaughter as he had aptly demonstrated his bone fides with Noah and his incestuous family.

    Such stories are nothing but cultural codswallop, hanging a religious theme upon an already fictional tale to give the dubious claim of land ownership some sort of divine justification.

    Fortunately, there are some among the Israeli/Jewish population that recognise what crap this really is.
    Let’s hope that one day the term Divine Command Theory is only ever read about in history books and never heard from the mouths of utter Dickheads such as William Lane Craig.

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  9. Ark,

    The Iliad, by Homer is fiction, yet it communicates incredible insight into human affairs and human nature.

    Ditto for Shakespeare, one of the greatest play writes in human history.

    So your requirement that the Bible isn’t meaningful because in all your atheist wisdom you have deemed it fiction, is bogus.

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  10. Hifzan Shafiee

    Hi, how’s it going.

    Just wanted to ask,

    what are your beliefs?

    Hope you are going well 🙂

    Ryan

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  11. Ark,

    You repeating what I demonstrated was nonsense proves exactly what I say about atheists: they can’t reason, learn what’s real and true, or make sense out of the simplest explanations.

    Your claim that the Bible is fiction is irrelevant and meaningless since among your other gross intellectual failures you haven’t the foggiest idea what the Bible means.

    You simply ingest atheist talking and parrot them as you’ve been programmed to do.

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  12. I appreciate this post, Nate, and I agree with your assessment and with what Ron mentioned — that it was a critical reading of the OT that ultimately lead to my loss of faith. If Jesus wanted me to bow down to such a psychopath then what did that say about Jesus? “I and the Father are one.” As I started researching about the brain, neurology and psychology, gene expression, neurotransmitters and hormones, it became quite apparent to me that the Abrahamic god knew nothing about its own creation; that this god caused the very environments that lead to dysfunction, antisocial behavior and chaos.

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  13. @SOM

    So your requirement that the Bible isn’t meaningful because in all your atheist wisdom you have deemed it fiction, is bogus.

    Much meaning and wisdom can be gleaned from many fictional works, including the heinous acts described in the bible. But such actions are only considered permissible and perfectly acceptable because they are attributed to/commanded by a god.

    This abrogates human responsibility for the genocide, and yet, you would not tolerate such nonsense if an earthly tyrant stated he did what he did because a god told him

    Such a disgusting example of morality is one of the reasons the religious still continue to
    get away with murder – often literally – because of claims that they were commanded by their god. Or it is the will of ‘God’, or ‘God’ wills it, as was the cry of the Crusader’s.

    That you would even attempt to justify it, fiction or otherwise, merely indicates the level of inculcation you and every other apologist has suffered/suffering from and your inability to reason might indicate a lurking mental problem.

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  14. The bible tells us about god. The bibles tells us about love, about mercy. It tells us about vengeance and wrath. It tells us which is better than the other. It tells us which attributes god has…

    …then it tells us stories like these nate has posted and all of a sudden, people who believe the bible is divine act as if god’s love is different than the one mentioned in the bible. that god’s mercy is different than the one in the bible, etc, etc.

    the bible makes claims and sets god up to be a certain way, but then when we use what the bible says god is and compare that to what god has supposedly done, does it match?

    It’s like superman. He’s indestructible. So much so that he’s boring. Supposedly only cryptonite can kill him, yet we see the writers in movies and comics breaking that rule to make the story more interesting or for some other purpose. If people from crypton are invincible on earth, and when they fight they tear down cities, but then all of a sudden you snap one of their necks?

    So, if god supposedly holds every life precious, and is the embodiment of love and mercy, then does it make sense to kill infants with swords, knives and against rocks – only after they’ve watched their family murdered in horror? Or in some cases, all the children were killed along with the adults except for the virgin girls… is that mercy? Is that love? Not as the bible defines it… not as we know those terms today…

    This is a bit of evidence that the claims, these claims made by men, written into the bible, are just that – claims of man.

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  15. Who were the Caananites in the Biblical narrative (in fact any peoples God set the Israelites against)? Where did Abraham live/grow up, and what were the accepted religious practices of those civilizations? What was God’s, or the writer of the scriptures, point in including these atrocities in the scripture?

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  16. HifzanShafiee, REgarding: “Is there any different between dying with blood shed and non-blood shed i.e poisoning, or H1N1” – there is a VAST difference between dying from natural causes, and being murdered.

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  17. just like there’s a difference between dying at age 3 for your parents crimes and dying at 76 for your own. There’s a difference between peacefully in your own bed from old age and in being hacked to bits by intruders because of your neighbor’s sins.

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  18. Hifzanshafiee, RE: “Christian need explanation, I don’t.” – no all you need, is to submit yourself to the imaginations of men long since dead.

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  19. Silliness of Mind, RE” “If God commands the death of people it is because he is ridding the world of evil.” – is this the evil you mean?

    Isaiah 45:7 “I form the light and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the Lord do all these things.”

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  20. SOM 🙂

    Your back

    No, that his front, but I’ll admit they look a lot alike —

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  21. you would not tolerate such nonsense if an earthly tyrant stated he did what he did because a god told him

    I trust god speaks through me.” – the defense rests —

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  22. Forgot – George W. Bush
    (and thanks to the WordPress format, couldn’t correct it!)

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  23. Who were the Caananites in the Biblical narrative (in fact any peoples God set the Israelites against)? Where did Abraham live/grow up, and what were the accepted religious practices of those civilizations? What was God’s, or the writer of the scriptures, point in including these atrocities in the scripture?

    Howdy, Kent! Always good to see you around these parts! 🙂

    Like Ark, I don’t think these events ever happened in the first place. I think they’re legends, much like the tales of King Arthur. I think it’s well accepted that the cultures of that time and place were very barbaric by today’s standards. They believed in cruel, nationalistic gods. So I think a story about the Israelite god clearing the land for his people made perfect sense. The other people weren’t Israelites, so who really cares?

    To me, it’s very striking that God’s characteristics match the time and place so well. Instead of standing out from all the other “false” gods, he acts like they do: he needs sacrifices, he’s only interested in his particular tribe, he’s jealous and vindictive, he’s very concerned about how people live, etc.

    Something that was eye-opening for me was the Moabite Stone, which is a record from King Mesha of Moab. He lived around the time of Israel’s king Omri, and this stone is a record of some of the events that occurred during his reign. Like most people, my knowledge of this time period primarily comes from the Old Testament, and when it says things like the Israelites lost a battle because God was angry with them, or they won a battle because God was pleased, I took it at face value. They attribute everything to God’s moods: the quality of the harvest, plague outbreaks, etc. But the Moabite Stone shows that this is how everyone else viewed things as well, except they did it from the perspective of their own god:

    And I have built this sanctuary for Chemosh in Karchah, a sanctuary of salvation, for he saved me from all aggressors, and made me look upon all mine enemies with contempt. Omri was king of Israel, and oppressed Moab during many days, and Chemosh was angry with his aggressions. His son succeeded him, and he also said, I will oppress Moab. In my days he said, Let us go, and I will see my desire upon him and his house, and Israel said, I shall destroy it for ever. Now Omri took the land of Madeba, and occupied it in his day, and in the days of his son, forty years. And Chemosh had mercy on it in my time. And I built Baal-meon and made therein the ditch, and I built Kiriathaim. And the men of Gad dwelled in the country of Ataroth from ancient times, and the king of Israel fortified Ataroth. I assaulted the wall and captured it, and killed all the warriors of the city for the well-pleasing of Chemosh and Moab, and I removed from it all the spoil, and offered it before Chemosh in Kirjath; and I placed therein the men of Siran, and the men of Mochrath. And Chemosh said to me, Go take Nebo against Israel, and I went in the night and I fought against it from the break of day till noon, and I took it: and I killed in all seven thousand men, but I did not kill the women and maidens, for I devoted them to Ashtar-Chemosh; and I took from it the vessels of Jehovah, and offered them before Chemosh. And the king of Israel fortified Jahaz, and occupied it, when he made war against me, and Chemosh drove him out before me, and I took from Moab two hundred men in all, and placed them in Jahaz, and took it to annex it to Dibon.

    Change “Chemosh” to “God” or “Yahweh,” and this could have come straight out of the Bible.

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  24. @Kent -RE: “Who were the Caananites in the Biblical narrative (in fact any peoples God set the Israelites against)? Where did Abraham live/grow up, and what were the accepted religious practices of those civilizations?
    According to the OT, Abraham came from “Ur of the Chaldees.” There was in fact, a major metropolitan city in Southern Mesopotamia, just a few miles from what is now modern Baghdad (or what’s left of it), in fact the very name, “Ur,” is Sumarian for “City.” HOWEVER, Abe, by most accounts, was alleged to have lived around 2350 BCE – you get different birthdates from each person you ask – and the tribe known as the Chaldeans didn’t move into the area until around 700 BCE. That portion of Genesis was written by the Priestly Source, a group of Jewish priests in Babylon, during the Babylonian Captivity, around 520 BCE, and so, of course, there were Chaldeans living there then. Bible writers were never big fact-checkers, so no one bothered to look into how long the Chaldeans had lived in the area, which is the same reason you have camels in Egypt a few years later, while the camel wasn’t domesticated until around 1000 BCE.

    Abe then left Mesopotamia, where each City-State was in perpetual war with all of the others, and moved to the Levant, but first, he stopped off in Haran, in far Northern Mesopotamia, near the Syrian border. – according to the Bible – and he left part of his family there, including his nephew, Laban. Interestingly, throughout Genesis, Laban is called, “Laban the Syrian” – and equally interestingly, there is a small town just 20 miles east of Haran, called still to this day, “Ur-fa,” and whose Chamber of Commerce prides itself in calling Ur-fa, “the birthplace of Abraham.” How much more logical, that the writers of the Priestly Source got it wrong, as they clearly did with the Chaldeans, and Abe wasn’t from Ur at all, and didn’t travel 700 miles up Mesopotamia, to Haran, but a mere 20 miles from Ur-fa? That should answer your question, to the best of my knowledge certainly, as to where Abraham grew up.

    what were the accepted religious practices of those civilizations?” – By the time Abraham allegedly came along, the Sumarians, the original inhabitants of the Mesopotamaian valley for 4000 years, had been overrun and conquered by the Akkadians, a Semitic group that had slowly filtered into Mesopotamia, innocently at first, but as they grew in strength and numbers, set out to conquer it. The Sumarians weren’t annihilated, and the survivors merged into the new Akkadian society, where they exchanged gods. For example, the Sumarians had a moon god they called, “Nana,” and the Akkadians also had a moon god, that they called, “Sin” – it wasn’t difficult for the two groups to simply say, “OK, same god, different names.” The chief god of the Sumerians was known as “Enlil” – “En,” meaning basically “Chief,” or “head,” or “ruler” – “l,” of – “il,” lords – “En-l-il, “Ruler of the gods” (paraphrased). The Akkadian head of the pantheon was “Ellil,” – same basic translation: “El-l-il” – but in fish stories and religions, the first liar doesn’t stand a chance – since the Akkadians had beaten the Sumarians, clearly their god was stronger – “Elil” gained the reputation of being so powerful that the other gods couldn’t even look at him.

    Though others followed him, Sargon was the last truly great Akkadian king. Realizing the benefits of being able to trade with the various cultures of the Mediterranean, he used his army, once Mesopotamia was secure, to “Akkadianize” the entire Levant, all the way nearly to Egypt, and he left forts and garrisons of soldiers at various locations to maintain Akkadian order – obviously, they took their god, “Ellil” with them, which the Caananites, having been freshly conquered by the Akkadians, adopted as their chief god, “El.”

    By Abe’s time, the Akkadians had themselves been conquered by another Semitic group, the Amorites, or Amurrites, so named after their own god, Amurru, who liked to be called, “El Shaddai” – the same name, interestingly, that in early Exodus, in the original Hebrew (it was changed in the English translations, I suspect for this very reason), Yahweh admits to Moses that that was the name that Abe, Ike and Jake knew him by. Hmm —

    Hope that helps.

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  25. Exactly why I do not believe that God ever told them to do that. This was their justification of their practices. God didn’t tell Abraham to kill Isaac either. IF he actually spoke to him (I think Abraham believed God spoke to him, but maybe not), God was showing Abraham that unlike the other religious cultures surrounding him (who did, indeed, sacrifice their children to the gods), his God did not want or require this (thus the ram caught in the thicket).

    Later, through the prophets, God’s voice becomes even clearer AGAINST all forms of blood sacrifice. I don’t believe that Jesus’ death was any kind of blood sacrifice to God either, but a complete UNdoing of the sacrificial system.

    Jesus shows us that God is NOT like He is portrayed in the O.T., but instead, the O.T. is a nice picture of the evolution of mankind from the ideas of God as angry/vindictive/murderous to the Truth of a loving God. There is a crystal clear progression of this throughout the Bible if you read it as a whole through the character lens of Jesus Christ.

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  26. Wonder when the Boobsy Twins are going to show up, they’re overdue? Well, we’ve got Silliness of Mind, a poor substitute (for ANYthing), but I guess he’ll have to do until the real thing comes along.

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  27. Thank you Nate and Arch, those are very helpful comments. I’ve heard that one of the points of the Abraham story was that when he was commanded by God to sacrifice Isaac, he would have thought, “Well, of course, that’s what the gods of all these civilizations demand of their people, why should my God be any different”, and up he goes. God stops him just before the fateful moment and the Jewish reader would have thought, “Hmm, that’s different. Maybe he’s not like those other Gods.” Just a thought I’d heard. That was also the thrust of my earlier question and, even if these OT stories are legends by-and-large, what was the purpose the writer was trying to get across? I’ll certainly give you that the people of Israel had an overwhelming propensity to want to be like all those other surrounding civilizations, a real source of conflict throughout the OT times, I don’t think it’s much of a stretch to see that their writings, and/or the interpretation of God and his will, would reflect those other peoples. As a believer, I often wonder if that was one of the reasons that Jesus eventually shows up on the scene: to model. Again, just a thought.

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  28. Kent, those are good thoughts. when i was a believer I often wondered the same. This is one of the issues that i began to see only after seeing many other issues.

    To me, one of the biggest things here is, if the bible is indeed from god, but parts of the OT were fouled up due to human intervention, then how can we know which parts were and were not fouled up throughout the bible, to include the NT?

    How can we tell which are the god parts and which are the man parts?

    To me, the evidence of man parts led me to believe it was all really man.

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  29. that’s what i call it with the misses, “man parts.”

    I’ll say, “it’s time to play abraham and sarah, you will call me ‘lord’ and grab my man parts.”

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  30. That’s an impressive amount of information, arch — thanks!
    Well, he DID ask – I’m just glad he didn’t ask where babies come from – I’ve usually had my best success there with simply pointing —

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  31. What you’re seeing, Judah, in the NT, is the dampening, civilizing influence of the superimposed Greek culture on a violent, vicious primitive desert tribe with a bloody history.

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  32. Kent, many of the biblical stories were brought to the Levant by the ancestors of the Jews, and eventually incorporated into the OT, and made Jewish.

    The “flood” story, for example, was based on an actual flood that occurred in 2900 BCE, near the city of Shurrapak, when the Euphrated River overflowed it’s banks to a depth of 15 cubits – 22.5 feet – (the same 15 found in the Bible, by which the waters were to have covered the highest mountains), that flooded an area that today, would have been about the size of three counties – devastating, to be sure, but hardly global. Actual, historical King Ziusudra escaped the flood by boarding a trading barge, loaded with cotton, cattle and beer, and sailed down the Euphrates to safety. A hundred years later, a fictional account of the flood was written into “The Epic of Gilgamesh,” in which the king’s name is changed to Utinapishtim. He speaks of making landfall, after the waters subsided, and making an offering, over which the gods hovered like flies when, “they smelled the sweet savor.” Genesis tells us that Noah sacrificed, (Gen 8:21) “And the Lord smelled the sweet savor….” Word for word.

    The Akkadian king, Sargon, that I mentioned earlier, began his journey to greatness when his mother, a temple prostitute whose career would be strained if she had a child, placed him in a basket sealed with pitch, and released him to the Euphrates, where he was found, rescued and raised.

    The great Amurrite king, Hammurabi, the Lawgiver, was the inspiration for Moses and his primitive tablets of stone. As American author, Kurt Vonnegut, was fond of saying, “And so it goes.”

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  33. @Kent
    If you ( or anyone) are prepared to read the Old Testament with absolute honesty and a completely open, but nonetheless critical mind, look at the archaeological as well as historical evidence and accept the consensus of qualified secular experts in all related fields you will quickly come to the conclusion that any remaining factual claims will result in an Old Testament of very few pages indeed.

    If you can do that, you might soon begin to discover true enlightenment.

    The real test is to apply the same criteria to the New.

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  34. @Ark: Thank you for input. A lot of the depth of my faith has come from personal experience; seeing how God has worked in my life and the lives of family and friends. Believing sometimes despite the “evidence” as it were. 🙂

    I’m not that big a fan of apologetics and, in all honesty, there are several parts of both the OT and NT that I find hard to fathom and/or reconcile, and a few I flat out don’t believe are historically factual. I’m okay with that. There’s also quite a few that I’m coming to understand more clearly when viewed through the lens of cultural and/or historical context. But, again, that’s me. I don’t expect anyone else to necessarily come to the same conclusions, or begrudge them if they conclude differently. I fully understand the paths Nate has taken, and you, and Arch, and a few others I enjoy reading on these comment threads, and I certainly don’t fault you those paths. In fact, Nate and I rather enjoy “agreeing to disagree” on many of these points, and have for a couple years now.

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  35. Arch,

    Nothing could be more ridiculous than an atheist quoting the Bible.

    The quote you picked has absolutely nothing to do with the topic at hand. Until you understand what you are reading it is recommended that you not try to quote the reading material.

    Like every atheist I’ve ever encountered, you are so angry at the suffering in the world, that you respond by trying to wink God out of existence.

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  36. Arch,

    The actions of God in the Old Testament point to the utterly depraved nature of man.

    But naturally, the atheists projects man’s inclination toward evil upon God in order to get atheism to miraculously work out.

    The greatest mass murders in all of human history were committed by atheists precisely because atheism does absolutely nothing to address man’s tendency toward evil.

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  37. @ SOM, “But naturally, the atheists projects man’s inclination toward evil upon God in order to get atheism to miraculously work out.”

    SOM, who caused the evil in the following scriptures ???

    1 Samuel 16:14 [ David in Saul’s Service ] Now the Spirit of the Lord had departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord tormented him.

    1 Samuel 16:15 Saul’s attendants said to him, “See, an evil spirit from God is tormenting you.

    1 Samuel 16:16 Let our lord command his servants here to search for someone who can play the lyre. He will play when the evil spirit from God comes on you, and you will feel better.”

    1 Samuel 16:23 Whenever the spirit from God came on Saul, David would take up his lyre and play. Then relief would come to Saul; he would feel better, and the evil spirit would leave him.

    1 Samuel 18:10 The next day an evil spirit from God came forcefully on Saul. He was prophesying in his house, while David was playing the lyre, as he usually did. Saul had a spear in his hand

    1 Samuel 19:9 But an evil spirit from the Lord came on Saul as he was sitting in his house with his spear in his hand. While David was playing the lyre,

    Ephesians 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

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  38. Kent said:

    In fact, Nate and I rather enjoy “agreeing to disagree” on many of these points, and have for a couple years now.

    Amen! I really have no qualms with Christianity when it’s practiced by people like Kent. We’re able to disagree without demeaning one another, and you’re not going to see him holding a sign that says “God hates fags” or voting to get evolution out of school!

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  39. “Nothing could be more ridiculous than an atheist quoting the Bible.”

    Sometimes it is better to remain quiet and appear stupid than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.

    I have never professed to be an atheist on any blog. Anything else enlightening you would like to say ???

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  40. KC,

    Saint Thomas Aquinas gives a great treatment of evil in his tour de force, “Summa Theologia.”

    The meaning of the Bible can only be approached through study and lots of thinking.

    Unfortunately, the atheist, in order to get atheism to work out, assigns his own meaning to the Bible. That means no real study and absolutely no thinking at all.

    Atheism is the ultimate in circular reasoning.

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  41. The greatest mass murders in all of human history were committed by atheists precisely because atheism does absolutely nothing to address man’s tendency toward evil.

    Ridiculous. Atheism describes what someone does not believe. That’s hardly a call to arms. The worst atrocities in human history have been committed by fanatics, whether they are of the religious or political variety. It’s fanaticism that’s so dangerous — not a particular belief.

    Like

  42. Unfortunately, the atheist, in order to get atheism to work out, assigns his own meaning to the Bible. That means no real study and absolutely no thinking at all.

    Sure, because Christianity doesn’t do that…

    Like

  43. T,

    An atheist quoting holy scripture is like a chimpanzee trying to tap out the works of Shakespeare on a keyboard.

    The universe will end before either the chimp or the atheist make any progress.

    And it has been found that the chimp gets nowhere near Shakespeare and ends up defecating all over the keyboard.

    Like

  44. “Wonder when the Boobsy Twins are going to show up, they’re overdue? Well, we’ve got Silliness of Mind, a poor substitute (for ANYthing), but I guess he’ll have to do until the real thing comes along.”

    Ah you missed me Ark. Same Old MA here. I disbanded my google plus account so had to sign up under a twitter account. I liked nate’s middle verse. apparently God gave people ways out of the judgement.I had missed that before. When you put that with families that would have fled who recognized the power of God with the israelites then Nate’s point gets even weaker. Mostly the die hards would have been the ones to have been killed

    Like

  45. Nate,

    The facts is the facts. Atheists are responsible for the greatest mass murders in human history.

    That is the consequence of atheist non-belief.

    Like

  46. Nate,

    People do everything under the sun – even Christians, because they are human too and possess all human foibles.

    But religion attenuates the baser nature of man. So much so that civilization comes into being.

    Every civilization in human history grew up around religion.

    But all atheists regimes end up inhumanly brutal and civil society is destroyed.

    Like

  47. SOM, you nor your buddy TBlacksman have any credibility here when you make statements like your recent ones.

    Neither of you want to engage in any civil discussion about beliefs or lack thereof . You might as well sign off and go have a beer together and tell each other how brilliant you guys are and call it a day because no one here is going to take you seriously..

    Like

  48. KC,

    To my knowledge I have responded to all your questions. For the hearing impaired could you please repeat your question.

    I will be happy to answer it if I can.

    Like

  49. KC,

    I suppose it’s okay for atheists to trash the Bible and ridicule Christians nine ways from Sunday, but schooling the atheist in the utter absurdity of his nihilistic, inhumane philosophy is beyond the pale.

    Like

  50. SOM, I only asked you one question. “SOM, who caused the evil in the following scriptures ???”

    1 Samuel 16:14 [ David in Saul’s Service ] Now the Spirit of the Lord had departed from Saul, and an evil spirit from the Lord tormented him.

    1 Samuel 16:15 Saul’s attendants said to him, “See, an evil spirit from God is tormenting you.

    1 Samuel 16:16 Let our lord command his servants here to search for someone who can play the lyre. He will play when the evil spirit from God comes on you, and you will feel better.”

    1 Samuel 16:23 Whenever the spirit from God came on Saul, David would take up his lyre and play. Then relief would come to Saul; he would feel better, and the evil spirit would leave him.

    1 Samuel 18:10 The next day an evil spirit from God came forcefully on Saul. He was prophesying in his house, while David was playing the lyre, as he usually did. Saul had a spear in his hand

    1 Samuel 19:9 But an evil spirit from the Lord came on Saul as he was sitting in his house with his spear in his hand. While David was playing the lyre,

    Ephesians 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.

    Like

  51. KC,

    I responded to that question.

    You’re going to have to do your own homework just like I did.

    As an atheist you are intellectually lazy and it wouldn’t be healthy for me to deprive you of your journey toward Truth.

    The short answer to your question (which I have already stated in a previous comment) is that the atheist can’t comprehend suffering and evil and so in your self-righteous anger you respond by winking God out of existence.

    And since you have no idea what the Bible means, cutting and pasting a few talking point quotes and demanding that I respond to them is equally ridiculous.

    Like

  52. Then SOM, I’m afraid you’re just demonstrating that you don’t understand atheism. The despots you’re thinking of had plenty of political reasons to commit the horrors that they did, but no religious ones.

    I don’t think Christians are going to be mass murderers just because some Christians started the Crusades, others started the Inquisition, and others persecuted countless minority groups like Jews and “witches.” It would irresponsible of me to try to draw that connection, even though there’s probably more basis for it than the one you’re trying to draw.

    So why don’t we stay focused on the actual issue? If you think God was justified in commanding the genocide of the Canaanites, why is that? Would direct revelation to them have not been successful for some reason? Or was the real reason they needed to be killed because of the land they possessed?

    Like

  53. “I suppose it’s okay for atheists to trash the Bible and ridicule Christians nine ways from Sunday, but schooling the atheist in the utter absurdity of his nihilistic, inhumane philosophy is beyond the pale.”

    Silenceof mind. My kind introduction. I am a fan of yours and have even been accused of being your sock puppet by the locals. I take it they don’t like either of our styles 🙂 🙂

    Like

  54. “As an atheist you are intellectually lazy and it wouldn’t be healthy for me to deprive you of your journey toward Truth.”

    I don’t believe KC will ever pick up a greek dictionary to begin that journey if he did he might figure out one of the meanings of the word evil is bad or hurtful and yeah when god judges you it isn’t a good thing

    Like

  55. “And since you have no idea what the Bible means”

    I have been reading the bible for over 50 years. I think I know what most of it means. I also have commentaries to help me with the scriptures I am unsure of.

    I wasn’t asking you to site any outside source for your answer. I was asking YOU, to give me YOUR opinion of who was causing evil in the scriptures I provided. You obviously don’t have an answer so maybe you need to go back and read your bible some more instead of just giving me rhetorical B.S.

    Like

  56. Nate,

    There is no political reason for genocide. Genocide is the evil that results when atheists are left by their little lonesomes to run things.

    Like

  57. KC,

    I’ve been reading the Bible for over 50 years too, and it is still a great mystery of wisdom.

    And I wouldn’t dream, like you obviously do, that I actually, fully, understand the mind of God (a slice of which is expressed in the Bible).

    The Bible is one of the greatest works of literature ever written.

    That is why I compare the atheist critique of that great work to the shenanigans of chimpanzees.

    Like

  58. “That is why I compare the atheist critique of that great work to the shenanigans of chimpanzees.”

    Great answer SOM. Again, you don’t have an answer so you have to resort to your berating B.S.

    You just don’t realize how silly you look by doing this. Anyway, I’m done with you, Mr No Answer.

    Like

  59. “So why don’t we stay focused on the actual issue? If you think God was justified in commanding the genocide of the Canaanites, why is that?”

    Fair enough nate. Theres nothing wrong with that request.

    First off direct contact has not shown itself to work. it didn’t stop Cain from murdering Abel. People have this misguided idea that sin really isn’t really sinful its just people not knowing better. Thats not anything with substantial proof and the shocking view of the Bible is that even when God does one day manifest himself the response in revelations is that they turn weapons against him

    Sin came into the world in the presence of God not because of his absence. You leave out two things in these complaints almost every time

    A) the people were often having done to them what they had done to others according to the text
    B) the reason of future ramifications is often given

    In other words leave the people be and they will end up not only doing the same things moving forward but teach people to do the same. I could do without Molech being the most popular worship in the world now. No matter what you think of Judaism the world does better with it now than it would with Canaanite Gods

    Finally the major difference with you and Christians who don’t buy your narrative is that they think the creator of love, family, friendship, beauty, laughter,self sacrifice who when all the cards were on the table gave his son to die gets some street cred to be given the benefit of the doubt about knowing the future of these people, what was in their heart and what danger they were to the world. You ignore the overall track record of their God in favor of judging him on matters you don’t have all the information about.

    Like

  60. Nate,

    Yes, seriously.

    To be an atheist means you believe in the absurdity that everything happened all by itself.

    That means atheism is a hoax just like all the other hoaxes you believe in:

    global warming, ObamaCare, overpopulation, energy shortage, abortion (mass murder of the innocent unborn, by the way), DDT, solar and wind energy, that government is the source of justice and so, can cure man of his evil nature which spawns poverty, starvation, hatred, and crime and every sort of social unrest.

    Unfortunately, all those atheist hoaxes are now mainstream. And just look how they’re tearing our society apart.

    Of course, the atheist response to all that is George Bush did it.

    Like

  61. The Bible does contain some great literature, and it’s undeniably a cultural and historical treasure. That’s very different from saying God wrote it though.

    Look, I get it posts like this one probably seem flippant and insulting. I don’t mean for it to be, but I can see how it comes across that way. Honestly, it’s hard to give criticism without hurting feelings sometimes.

    These stories of genocide didn’t really bother me, once upon a time. But the more I thought about it and tried to put myself in those people’s shoes (even the Israelites who would have had to carry this out), I realized that something was wrong with all of it. A God who embodies love and gives the command “thou shalt not kill” should abhor genocide, not command it.

    If you’d like to see how I once thought about this, check out this link (though I’m quite a shamed of it now):
    https://findingtruth.wordpress.com/2006/12/18/its-not-fair-the-god-of-the-old-testament-vs-the-god-of-the-new-testament/

    And this comment on it made a real impact on me:
    https://findingtruth.wordpress.com/2006/12/18/its-not-fair-the-god-of-the-old-testament-vs-the-god-of-the-new-testament/#comment-595

    Like

  62. Nate, where do these people come from that invade your Blog ? They profess to be Christian but act like total buttheads.

    Here is an example

    non-believer: why does God order the slaying of babies in the OT ?

    Christian: Pokes non-believer in the eyes and then says, ” you atheist ! You are a moron and you don’t know how to read the bible . You have taken this out of context and you have to look at the language, culture , and other things. Also God is in control and we don’t always know his ways. Atheists are liberals and they always show their ignorance with questions like this. How stupid of you to ask !

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  63. “There is no political reason for genocide. Genocide is the evil that results when atheists are left by their little lonesomes to run things.”

    ROFl….okay they will be shocked to see me write that thats just a little over the top even for me. However only a little. I do believe for all the talk that if you removed theism from the history of civilizations this world would be untold carnage. The thing is even Nate’s sensibility of genocide being wrong is a result of growing up in a Christianized culture.

    Like

  64. KC,

    Using absurdity to demonstrate absurdity is not being a butt head. It is a way demonstrating just how biased, judgmental and intolerant are the acolytes of atheism.

    It’s okay for the atheist to ridicule the Bible, Christianity and the basic facts of history, but when the tables are turned, even in the most civil way as was done here, the atheist cries foul and throws a fit of indignation.

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  65. “It’s okay for the atheist to ridicule the Bible, Christianity and the basic facts of history, but when the tables are turned, even in the most civil way as was done here, the atheist cries foul and throws a fit of indignation.”

    Totally Agreed. My first post here where I dared to say “atheist tend to” was taken with outrage when in fact the entire blog is dedicated to antichristian rhetoric whether in blog post or in blog comments.

    Like

  66. SOM, I asked you a basic question. No where did I ridicule the bible, Christianity or the basic facts of history. Even your buddy TBlacksmon thinks your comments are a little over the top.

    “but when the tables are turned, even in the most civil way as was done here”

    Where have you ever been civil ???

    No need to reply. You are a lost cause and have zero credibility.

    Like

  67. “Even your buddy TBlacksmon thinks your comments are a little over the top.”

    Emphasis on little. don’t look to me for support. You have PLENTY of places you have ridiculed the Bible and PLENTY of places you are outraged at getting your own views ridiculed

    Like

  68. Mike, thanks for the straight-forward answer.

    First off direct contact has not shown itself to work. it didn’t stop Cain from murdering Abel.

    Granted, people still break the rules sometimes, even when they know what they are. But wouldn’t you agree that in most situations, when people know the rules, a greater majority of them don’t break them going forward? For instance, if we compared two classrooms — one where there’s no rule about staying in your seat and another where that is a rule, do you suppose the classroom with the rule would have more kids sitting in their seats? You’ll always have some who don’t follow the rule, even when they know it. But (as GI Joe used to say) “knowing is half the battle.” So it seems to me that it would have been in everyone’s best interest for God to continue the one-on-one communication.

    People have this misguided idea that sin really isn’t really sinful its just people not knowing better. Thats not anything with substantial proof and the shocking view of the Bible is that even when God does one day manifest himself the response in revelations is that they turn weapons against him

    I think it depends. Some people knowingly break the rules; others don’t.

    Sin came into the world in the presence of God not because of his absence. You leave out two things in these complaints almost every time

    A) the people were often having done to them what they had done to others according to the text
    B) the reason of future ramifications is often given

    This is an important point — it’s actually how I viewed it as a Christian too. What strikes me as problematic about these examples, though, is that it goes so way over the top. It’s almost like getting a ding on your car, but then being so angry you take a sledge hammer to the rest of it. If they’re really being punished for child sacrifice, why kill all of them, even the children? Granted, as a father, I don’t much like that idea any better — the notion of someone killing my wife and me, but then raising my children as their own. But why must anyone be killed anyway? Why not simply tell the Canaanites that this isn’t necessary? People did not perform child sacrifice because they liked it, but because they thought it was necessary.

    In other words leave the people be and they will end up not only doing the same things moving forward but teach people to do the same. I could do without Molech being the most popular worship in the world now. No matter what you think of Judaism the world does better with it now than it would with Canaanite Gods

    Yes, I agree with you here. I don’t think there was much difference between the Jewish tribal god and the Canaanite gods, but through the evolution of Judaism and Christianity, El / Yahweh / Jehovah has become far preferable.

    Finally the major difference with you and Christians who don’t buy your narrative is that they think the creator of love, family, friendship, beauty, laughter,self sacrifice who when all the cards were on the table gave his son to die gets some street cred to be given the benefit of the doubt about knowing the future of these people, what was in their heart and what danger they were to the world. You ignore the overall track record of their God in favor of judging him on matters you don’t have all the information about.

    That’s a fair criticism — I see what you’re saying. But try to keep in mind that we don’t see it that way. We don’t believe that all the good things in life came from this god — if we did, then we would probably see things the way you do. Instead, we see issues like these as reasons for being skeptical of this god.

    I know you don’t see it that way, and I don’t expect you to. I think you would probably concede that these passages are problematic, but like you said, you are willing to give them the benefit of the doubt because of the good things about Christianity. I honestly don’t have an argument with that. One of my good friends, Kent, who commented earlier views it that way. I consider his point of view, and he considers mine, but we see the big picture differently.

    So from my perspective, can you see why I find such passages problematic?

    Thanks again for approaching my question on this in the way you did.

    Like

  69. “I don’t believe KC will ever pick up a greek dictionary to begin that journey if he did he might figure out one of the meanings of the word evil is bad or hurtful and yeah when god judges you it isn’t a good thing”

    I wasn’t asking for the definition of evil. I was asking who in the scriptures I listed was causing evil. It’s a very simple question to which there is a simple answer.

    OK let’s do it this way. Who caused the bad and hurtful things in the scriptures I listed ? Does this make everyone feel warm & fuzzy now ?

    Like

  70. KC,

    The only way to the discuss anything profitably is if there exists common ground.

    Concerning the Bible, the atheists assigns his own meaning to it instead of letting the text do its own speaking.

    One day, maybe you could sit down to read the Bible and let it speak to you. That’s the way to read any literature, in fact.

    The tendency is to start out with preconceived beliefs and then judge meaning by how the literature conforms to the preconceptions.

    The way atheists apply their preconceptions to the Bible makes it impossible for the atheist to understand anything the Bible actually says.

    Learning happens best in a clear, open, silence of mind.

    Like

  71. KC,

    Without suffering (another name for evil) there would be no life on Earth.

    So as terrible as suffering can be, it is inherently good.

    Consequently, if God causes some sort of evil, the end, or objective is the good.

    Nevertheless, human ethics don’t work that way. It is not ethical to commit evil in order to do good.

    The error the atheist makes it to apply finite human ethics to God Almighty who is infinite.

    The result will always be absurdity.

    Ergo the atheist critique of the Bible is always absurd.

    Like

  72. SOM , you keep referring to atheists. I have never professed to being an atheist. I was a devout christian for over 40 years although Mike / TBlacksman feels this is impossible. I am now a non-believer / agnostic.

    Agnostic fits best, because I cannot know. And neither can you !

    I know what indoctrination is all about. I was raised in a Pentecostal Home and was as fundamental as they come.

    I always had questions about my faith and no one including my parents or my pastor could give satisfactory answers. I lost my faith over a 10 year period of time. I already have your T-shirt. I just no longer wear it.

    @Mike / TBlacksman, “You have PLENTY of places you have ridiculed the Bible and PLENTY of places you are outraged at getting your own views ridiculed.

    OK Mike, provide the evidence to your first claim. I want to see plenty of places where I have ridiculed the bible.

    Your 2nd claim is true. You have been the main person who uses berating people as part of your rhetorical b.s.

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  73. “The tendency is to start out with preconceived beliefs and then judge meaning by how the literature conforms to the preconceptions.” — SOM

    Question: Is this true of a person who has never been exposed to the bible? Someone whose first exposure to Christianity is via the bible? If there is no preconception, how can that person make judgments?

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  74. Nan,

    Learning is not about making judgments.

    Correct and true judgment can only be made after much learning.

    The story of the Hebrews wandering in the desert for 40 years on their way to the promised land is analogous to the spiritual journey an person must take when he approaches God Almighty.

    The atheist is lazy and prideful and wants quick answers.

    God Almighty who speaks in the silence is almost imperceptible to man who must spend his entire life with humbly inclined ear.

    Like

  75. Nate,

    The great thing about great literature is that it is not necessary to believe in the author.

    Yet the Bible dazzles.

    And that is what lends credibility to the claim of divine authorship.

    Nevertheless, without believing in God, the ethics in the book of Leviticus, for example, are stunning in their justice which can be applied to all of mankind.

    And the teachings of Moses and Jesus are stupendous even if one is without faith in God.

    The teachings of the Bible, its wisdom, it’s modeling of God, man and universe can provide common moral, ethical and philosophical common ground for all men.

    Like

  76. Appreciate your comment but it doesn’t answer my question. Please read it carefully (in relation to your statement) and try again.

    Like

  77. Nan,

    I can’t try again because I answered your question completely.

    Maybe you have a preconception that requires I respond to you in a certain way.

    All I can do is respond to you in my own way.

    Communication can take place when minds meet on common ground.

    Like

  78. “Granted, people still break the rules sometimes, even when they know what they are. But wouldn’t you agree that in most situations, when people know the rules, a greater majority of them don’t break them going forward? ”

    Thats to the extent that a society enforces those rules Nate. Let me ask you a question. WHat do you think would be the result if in the US if we disbanded our police force and closed our judicial system and you had ZERO chance of getting caught? I’d give it 3 months and we’d collapse in every conceivable way and not just in violent crime either.

    ” But why must anyone be killed anyway? Why not simply tell the Canaanites that this isn’t necessary? People did not perform child sacrifice because they liked it, but because they thought it was necessary.”

    au contraire.We don’t like to believe it but humanity is capable of enjoying a great deal of carnage. I have no doubt that parents of the kids might have been torn but there is alot in our history that indicates we are not all that cut up over others pain.

    We are finally getting down to a conversation where we might in fact make some progress though. I submit to you the heart of the problem is that you have an an entirely different sociological view of Humanity than God does. I think its a nice idea that if you just talk to people they would listen I just don’t think its real.

    “Yes, I agree with you here. I don’t think there was much difference between the Jewish tribal god and the Canaanite gods, ”

    Well no you don’t because you pretty much ignore that the reason the Jewish God sanctioned the behaviour was for equal judgement of doing such things in the first place and not as the canaanite Gods did without reference to getting what you did done back to you as an object lesson to others.

    “But try to keep in mind that we don’t see it that way. We don’t believe that all the good things in life came from this god ”

    and hence the folly of your logic because you take what you want from the text and then bow out on the context of who the text is talking about in God. this is what I referred to before. If you consider the text secular then fine deal with it as such across the board but what atheists do is duck into the the theological narrative to make their point on how the Chrsitan god is evil and sadistic (for the emotional appeal)and then duck out of the theology when theological points are raised against their position.

    I am going to bet that there is someone in your life who if they did an atrocity you would look for a reason PRECISELY because of everything else you know of them. perhaps its your children or your wife. I know with my children if in the future one of them should commit a murder my first instinct would be to question the one murdered not merely because of my love for my children but because of what I KNOW about them. Now what would happen if I had the data of their goodness multiplied. Lets say they had risked their lives for others in the past, worked to feed the homeless, wept bitterly at even animals being killed, worked tirelessly to assist rape victims. slept at the feet of injured children.

    Then you hear they gunned down a father and son in a alley? They confessed to it and told you “dad you know I work for the government and I know some things that you and the Media don’t know”. I don’t know about you nate but I would think all those other things would incline me to give them the benefit of the doubt. I really doubt I would throw al the other stuff through the window and define them on that isolated action given I don’t know all the details.

    With God the whole thing is multiplied by thousands. Creator of a laughter, designer of families, Architect of love, character that weaved the whole story just so he could die on a cross for all of us. You slash that out of the narrative in order to use isolated acts of thousands of years ago to judge him on things you have no full grasp of and we don’t and won’t

    We approach it just as you would a love one who you know better of. We think the odds are really good with the track record of creating beautiful and good things that the issue lies with the people who never offered any of those things and yes even of the children if he knew they would never offer it either.

    “So from my perspective, can you see why I find such passages problematic?”

    No Nate I can’t. Jarring to your sensibilities outside of being there perhaps but not problematic.Why? because in your case you make an argument about God and then you duck out when we start to talk about what and who God is. I guess you might find capital punishment problematic also but I don’t see why it is. I think its based on some false sensibilities just as I think some of your view about God are based on the same.

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  79. Nate,

    Evidently, suffering is inherent to our universe.

    And since heaven is a divine realm outside our universe one would think that suffering does not exist there.

    I don’t think about heaven much. I think a lot about how I must act in a way that bears fruit which is pleasing to God Almighty.

    That I find a bit worrisome, truth be told.

    Like

  80. KC,

    I went to Confession recently and told the priest that I had lived my entire life thinking like an atheist.

    I had thought of myself as a Christian since I returned to the Church 20 years ago or so.

    I had plugged all these biblical beliefs into my head and could reason my way to the existence of God, but still, not so deep down, I believed everything happened all by itself.

    And I lived the way I believed and I believed in a reality of my own making.

    But eventually I had the insight about how things are connected and woven together by the “Laws of Nature”, which come from “Nature’s God.”*

    And I realized that to live a good life I had to follow the teachings of Jesus in a very deliberate, thoughtful manner, not just as a matter of thoughtless dogma.

    The Christian way of life opens the human being to God’s grace. Jesus referred to that as the Pearl of great price.

    It is for this reason that the Christian must meet the atheist in the arena of ideas. Civil society depends on Christian victory over the prevalent atheism that has taken over modern society.

    *from the Declaration of Independence, a secular document

    Like

  81. Nan,

    It’s kind of like listening to another person speak.

    If you have preconceived ideas you hear what you want to hear, not what the other person is actually saying.

    Like

  82. “If you have preconceived ideas you hear what you want to hear, not what the other person is actually saying.”

    This tends to work both ways , SOM

    What you fail to realize is that Nan, Ruth, Nate, William, me and countless others already have your T-shirt. We simply can no longer wear it .

    Like

  83. Mike / TBlacksman, I can honestly say I have enjoyed your exchange with Nate on this post. Because of the level of civility on both ends, I have tried to understand the subject from both sides.

    It sets the tone for the rest of us .

    Like

  84. SOM said:

    Evidently, suffering is inherent to our universe.

    And since heaven is a divine realm outside our universe one would think that suffering does not exist there.

    But if God is the creator of this universe, why do you suppose he created it with that inherent suffering?

    Like

  85. Nate,

    One can’t really know why God created the universe the way he did.

    But one can reason out that life would not exist unless God created the universe the way he did.

    Like

  86. Hi Mike,

    Thanks for the reply. I actually agree wholeheartedly with your example of a loved one killing someone. If one of my children did something like that, then I would behave exactly as you described. So I do understand why you view these passages this way — thanks for expressing it the way you did.

    The reason I see it differently is that I don’t believe that laughter, love, families, character, etc come from a god — I think they come from other people and our human nature. I know that religions teach that god(s) created all of that, but this is basically the question we’re trying to resolve. Even if I did see those things as evidence for god, I don’t know what would make me connect the actual God to the god of the Bible. For me, passages like the ones we’re talking about here indicate that these gods are not the same. I don’t see the behaviors described in these passages as lining up with a god that can be described as all-good and all-loving.

    Again, I know we won’t agree on this point — I’m just trying to explain why I see it the way I do.

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  87. One can’t really know why God created the universe the way he did.

    But one can reason out that life would not exist unless God created the universe the way he did.

    I disagree. And if the universe had to be created this way for life to exist, how can Heaven be different?

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  88. Nate,

    That an atheist would disagree with reason, scientific findings and intellectual tradition is not surprising.

    And you dig yourself an even deeper hole because you make a claim with zero explanation.

    Whatever the atheists proclaims is true simply because the atheist proclaims it.

    How can Heaven be different?

    Read my last comment. I explained exactly how.

    Like

  89. Nate,

    Why don’t you bother explaining why you disagree?

    And since you were the one who asked me a question I was glad to bother answering it.

    I just don’t understand why you had to ask the same question twice.

    It’s like you guys pop in and out of an alternate universe.

    Like

  90. Actually, I don’t think you have answered. You said that suffering was necessary for life to exist, but you haven’t said why. If you’re going to make such a claim, I would assume that you have reasons for it?

    And I disagreed with this part of what you said, just to be clear:

    But one can reason out that life would not exist unless God created the universe the way he did.

    Like

  91. ‘Again, I know we won’t agree on this point — I’m just trying to explain why I see it the way I do.”

    With all due respect your point to me is garbled. Half of it is written from the perspective of God being God and the other half is of him not being real. its conveniently nip and tuck in places to make your argument more persuasive but its not a rational approach. It allows you to raise a point in the text one moment and then to jump out of its context. If you believe Moby Dick is fiction fine then its fiction but to complain against the wickedness of Ahab in whale hunting as an argument against Moby Dick being real and /or rational and then sliding out the contextual reasons within the book for Ahab doing what he does is just not straight shooting. its just picking and choosing trying to have your cake and eat it or in this cake eat it and throw it away at the same time.

    To be honest and not merely inflammatory the whole thing just smacks to me of emotional rhetoric and theatrics. You don’t believe any of it happened and its just a way for atheist to charge their non belief with emotion to win people over. Its like don’t believe the story of Moby Dick because Ahab would be an evil man to do such a thing but you don’t have to worry about the justification in the context of the book because after all its not real. Its talking out of both sides of the mouth when you could just say its fiction and be done with it

    the context of the book is that the God that created everything including laughter, love, friendship children, family, self sacrifice, beauty etc did this thing. You can’t just take it out of that context as it suits you.

    Like

  92. Would it be inappropriate to say that Star Wars isn’t real because the technology is too advanced, people use magic, and Jar-Jar Binks is just too… well, Jar-Jar Binks?

    Or to say that Santa isn’t real because someone couldn’t actually cover the entire world in one night and because reindeer don’t fly?

    I think it’s appropriate to point out what seem to be contradictions in the narrative. If God is described as having certain characteristics, but then acts in ways that appear to be the opposite, he becomes too contradictory to be real (to me). Or at the very least, one or more of those accounts isn’t true — either he isn’t really all-good and the embodiment of love, or he didn’t actually command those things. That’s why you see people like JudahFirst explaining why she doesn’t take these passages at face value, despite being a Christian. You explain it by saying that he had reasons we may not understand, and his other characteristics cause you to give him the benefit of the doubt. That’s cool — it’s just not how I see it.

    Like

  93. “Or to say that Santa isn’t real because someone couldn’t actually cover the entire world in one night and because reindeer don’t fly?”

    Sure but what does the have to do with a moral objection that Santa clause is evil because he ties up reindeers. Wouldn’t you have to consult the story to see why it is that he ties them up and the reason before you can conclude he is evil.

    ” That’s cool — it’s just not how I see it.”

    This has nothing to do with how you see it. It has to do with having some internal integrity to your argument. You can’t with integrity accept the text without its context of who it is talking about.

    “Or at the very least, one or more of those accounts isn’t true — either he isn’t really all-good and the embodiment of love, or he didn’t actually command those things. ”

    False limited choices are fallacious….Or he had a very good reason to have those people erradicated since he’s God and knows the future.

    Like

  94. “That’s why you see people like JudahFirst explaining why she doesn’t take these passages at face value, despite being a Christian. ”

    Sorry but Judahfirst is no authority on the text. Citing someone agreeing with you hardly means that you have a valid point. If that were so no one would have an invalid point since error is shared in most cases.

    ” You explain it by saying that he had reasons we may not understand, and his other characteristics cause you to give him the benefit of the doubt”

    and you accepted such a logic unequivocally as it relates to your loved ones so if we analyzed that we could properly conclude that you never saw God as a loved one since this gave you issues while supposedly being a believer

    Like

  95. Well, I never saw God at all. No one can demonstrate he even exists (hence all our conversations), which is very different from the relationships we have with other people.

    Like

  96. “Well, I never saw God at all. No one can demonstrate he even exists (hence all our conversations), which is very different from the relationships we have with other people.”

    What a ridiculous answer.

    So you are saying that as a BELIEVER (since this gave you a problem when you were alllegedly one) the reason God didn’t get your benefit of doubt as any loved one would is because you could not see him and didn’t know that he existed.

    Curious Nate. What does believer mean to you?

    Like

  97. @Kent

    I’m not that big a fan of apologetics and, in all honesty, there are several parts of both the OT and NT that I find hard to fathom and/or reconcile, and a few I flat out don’t believe are historically factual.

    Unfortunately, there are no degrees of virtuosity or religious veracity. It is all crap, based on erroneous text and fallacious doctrine. ALL OF IT, be it your god or someone else’s.
    And sadly, the foundation of lies it is built upon is often taken to the literal extreme by may religious sects.
    Whereas you may scoff at the Flood you are perfectly at home with the the character, Jesus of Nazareth turning water into wine or the Virgin Birth, perhaps, and most certainly the Resurrection.
    Remember, your acceptance of what you consider benign Christianity stems from a rotten root that murdered a great many for wrong belief and is still poisoning the minds of children across the globe.

    There is no right religious practice. It is ALL false.

    Like

  98. Arc,
    If God is Author of Death. How the death were something different? Either way, the person who die can not rise again, will perish, will decomposed, decayed.

    So, as you there a VAST different, can you explain that to me.

    Of you want to teach me in context of the different between murder and die due cancer?

    FYI Sis, I talk about the Author of Death, not medical nor civil law point of view. But if want to speak in that context, than I need to agree the are a VAST different. Get the topic right 1st.

    Like

  99. Arch,

    So, I believe you don’t have imagination. I think you live black and white system, where all idea have 2 answers, right and wrong. Interesting place, where do you stay?

    Like

  100. Portals,

    My views? I write in point facts.

    Fact that every may agree.
    1) Everyone will die/ perish. [Fact that we know]
    2) No one will know how to die, either car accident, cancer, poison, murdered, etc [Fact that we DON’T know]
    3) We want have a comfort death with family members around, still depend on person view [Fact that we HOPE we can achieve]

    Additional religious view:
    4) Even we die are look “peacefully” (in mosque, church, etc), it don’t necessary you will live afterlife peacefully, vise verse. Or we die horribly, it not necessarily you live afterlife horribly. [Fact that TOTALY UNKNOWN]

    Issue,
    5) As most of the facts death is Unknown so why need to think about it too much. Just prepare it everyday, every time. Preparing don’t necessary think about it 24H/7D. If death come, you prepare you thing afterlife with good deed and a person you left behind.

    Issue of Murders/ War and Blood-Shed.
    6) This issue is not about death, it about life.
    7) A death people can not solve this issue, only a person who live can solve this issue.
    8) How to prevent it? Is a matter how how we live the life. Be morale, promoting good deed, solve the issue. This on going problem.
    9) Some stupid ppl think, if they think about death, the war will stopped. BULLSHIT.

    GOD and Death.
    10) God is Author of Death, how or who or when or what, it was His job, past, present and future. How/ What the method of dying is His Job.
    11) Our duty is to lives. If you sick, eat medicine. If there are a war, prevent it.

    Conclusion
    Why I need to think or worried about how God take people life?
    I don’t need to think. My roles is to live, prepare for death and return my soul to Him.
    His job is giving me a life and taking my life.
    I doing my job, He doing His job.

    Like

  101. Hifzan, why would you ask me how I know the mind of god when I don’t know what one is and whether god is? There is no where I have claimed to know the mind of one, if I have, am open to correction. Show me the offending statement and I will definitely correct it.
    I seem not able to understand what you mean by this

    In human’s view, death is commonly viewed losses, sadness, and misery and of course

    I don’t know what death is, the least I can say about it is cessation of all sense. And yes, it is viewed as loss of loved ones unless you feel differently.

    Like

  102. Makagutu,

    As I said earlier, think as “GENERAL GOD”. General means “common ideas of what and character of God should be”.

    In human’s view, death is commonly viewed losses, sadness, and misery and of course

    It normal, right? or, Is it death is happiness?

    Death – Cambridge define as “the end of life”.
    Merriam-Medical define as “the irreversible cessation of all vital functions especially as indicated by permanent stoppage of the heart, respiration, and brain activity : the end of life”
    Religion view – “A soul that being pull out from body”.

    All the conclusion above related to irreversible losses. If something losses, it was a normal from human to feel sad and misery.

    Don’t ask simple question, this is too common.

    Like

  103. Silliness of Mind, I realize that reading isn’t your strong suit, along with comprehension and thinking in general, but which of the words, “I create evil” did you not entirely understand? I’m sure there are people on the board who could help explain it to you, by speaking v-e-r-y s-l-o-www-l-y —

    Like every atheist I’ve ever encountered, you are so angry at the suffering in the world, that you respond by trying to wink God out of existence.
    That’s got to be the easiest trick in the book, winking something non-existent out of existence – “Now you don’t see it – (wink!) – now you still don’t!”

    Like

  104. Silliness of Mind, RE: “The greatest mass murders in all of human history were committed by atheists precisely because atheism does absolutely nothing to address man’s tendency toward evil.
    Now you’ve confused me – are you calling your god an atheist? I mean, clearly the flood was the greatest episode of mass murder in the history of the planet, unless – unless you don’t believe it actually happened — SAY it isn’t so, Silliness!

    Like

  105. KC, RE: “Nothing could be more ridiculous than an atheist quoting the Bible.
    I’m pretty sure he was talking to me.

    Like

  106. Sorry Arch. Didn’t mean to steal your thunder. LOL He just happened to post that comment right after I posted mine which included scripture. 🙂

    Like

  107. are you calling your god an atheist?

    He doesn’t have to—the bible does it for him:

    “I am Yahweh, and there is no other; there is no God but Me.” Isaiah 45:5 (Holman)

    Now, what was the ending of the passage that begins: “The fool hath said in his heart…” again? It’s on the tip of my tongue, but I can’t quite remember. 🙂

    Like

  108. @Ron

    “The fool hath said in his heart…”

    I know, I know!

    ”There’s no messiah in here. There’s a mess all right…but no messiah.”

    That’s the one, right?

    or was it…

    “I’m kosher mum. I’m a Red Sea Pedestrian and proud of it!”

    It has to be one of these two.

    Like

  109. @Ark

    I was thinking it may have been: “He’s not the Messiah. He’s a very naughty boy!”

    Like

  110. SOM, RE: “The meaning of the Bible can only be approached through study and lots of thinking.” – So that would mean you can’t get past the cover.

    Like

  111. SOM, RE: “And it has been found that the chimp gets nowhere near Shakespeare and ends up defecating all over the keyboard.” – That’ll teach ’em not to let you anywhere near a keyboard!.

    Like

  112. KC, RE: “SOM, I only asked you one question. “SOM, who caused the evil in the following scriptures ???”
    Don’t forget the “goddidit!” hardening of Pharaoh’s heart, that resulted in the deaths of all the Egyptian first-borns —

    Like

  113. Hifzanshafiee, I learn much from the imaginations of men long since dead – Shakespeare, Gibran, Poe, Twain, the list is nearly endless – but I view what I learn as suggestions, not hard and fast rules by which my life MUST be lived. I have sufficient imagination to decide for myself how I choose to live – I would suspect it is one who feels they must live by the rules of others, who truly lacks imagination. I can respect the rules of society, the rules we need to assure each other peace, tranquility, and freedom, created by living people, for the needs of today, people we can vote out of office and elect others, if they don’t meet our needs – those aren’t the rules I mean.

    By much that you’ve said, I get the impression that you are a follower of Islam, which likely means that at least five times each day, you prostrate yourself, bowing in the direction of Mecca, and pray – what would happen, if one day, you didn’t. Would the world end? Would you be struck dead? What about two days? Think how much more time you would have, to hug your children, be with your family, just LIVE, if you didn’t feel compelled to follow what – to me – are such ridiculous rules?

    Like

  114. KC, RE: “Sorry Arch. Didn’t mean to steal your thunder.” – my thunder, much like the pennies in the little cup next to a convenience store cash register, is there for the taking, no stealing needed.

    Like

  115. Not sure if this will work, but here’s a list of the people God killed in the Bible:

      SAB,
    Brick Testament
    Number Killed Cumulative Total
    Lot’s wife for looking back Gen.19:26,
    BT
    1 1
    Er who was “wicked in the sight of the Lord”
    Gen.38:7
    ,

    BT
    1 2
    Onan for spilling his seed Gen.38:10,
    BT
    1 3
    For dancing naked around Aaron’s golden calf Ex.32:27-28, 35,
    BT
    3000 3003
    Aaron’s sons for offering strange fire before the Lord Lev.10:1-3,
    Num.3:4,
    26:61,
    BT
    2 3005
    A blasphemer
    Lev.24:10-23
    ,

    BT
    1 3006
    A man who picked up sticks on the Sabbath
    Num.15:32-36
    ,

    BT
    1 3007
    Korah, Dathan, and Abiram (and their families)
    Num.16:27
    ,

    BT
    12+ 3019+
    Burned to death for offering incense
    Num.16:35
    ,

    26:10
    ,

    BT
    250 3269+
    For complaining
    Num.16:49
    ,

    BT
    14,700 17,969+
    For “committing whoredom with the daughters of Moab”
    Num.25:9
    ,

    BT
    24,000 41,969+
    Midianite massacre (32,000 virgins were kept alive)
    Num.31:1-35
    ,

    BT
    90,000+ 131,969+
    God tells Joshua to stone to death Achan (and his family) for taking the accursed thing.
    Joshua 7:10-12
    ,

    24-26
    ,

    BT
    5+ 131,974+
    God tells Joshua to attack Ai and do what he did to Jericho (kill everyone).
    Joshua 8:1-25
    ,

    BT
    12,000 143,974+
    God delivered Canaanites and Perizzites
    Judges 1:4
    ,

    BT
    10,000 153,974+
    Ehud delivers a message from God: a knife into the king’s belly
    Jg.3:15-22
    ,

    BT
    1 153,975+
    God delivered Moabites
    Jg.3:28-29
    ,

    BT
    10,000 163,975+
    God forces Midianite soldiers to kill each other.
    Jg.7:2-22
    ,

    8:10
    ,

    BT
    120,000 283,975+
    The Spirit of the Lord comes on Samson
    Jg.14:19
    ,

    BT
    30 284,005+
    The Spirit of the Lord comes mightily on Samson
    Jg.15:14-15
    ,

    BT
    1000 285,005+
    Samson’s God-assisted act of terrorism
    Jg.16:27-30
    ,

    BT
    3000 288,005+
    “The Lord smote Benjamin”
    Jg.20:35-37
    ,

    BT
    25,100 313,105+
    More Benjamites
    Jg.20:44-46
    25,000 338,105+
    For looking into the ark of the Lord
    1 Sam.6:19
    50,070 388,175+
    God delivered Philistines
    1 Sam.14:12
    20 388,195+
    Samuel (at God’s command) hacks Agag to death
    1 Sam.15:32-33
    1 388,196+
    “The Lord smote Nabal.”
    1 Sam.25:38
    1 388,197+
    Uzzah for trying to keep the ark from falling
    2 Sam.6:6-7
    ,

    1 Chr.13:9-10
    1 388,198+
    David and Bathsheba’s baby boy
    2 Sam.12:14-18
    1 388,199+
    Seven sons of Saul hung up before the Lord
    2 Sam.21:6-9
    7 388,206+
    From plague as punishment for David’s census (men only; probably 200,000 if
    including women and children)

    2 Sam.24:13
    ,

    1 Chr.21:7
    70,000+ 458,206+
    A prophet for believing another prophet’s lie
    1 Kg.13:1-24
    1 458,207+
    God delivers the Syrians into the Israelites’ hands
    1 Kg.20:28-29
    100,000 558,207+
    God makes a wall fall on Syrian soldiers
    1 Kg.20:30
    27,000 585,207+
    God sent a lion to eat a man for not
    killing a prophet

    1 Kg.20:35-36
    1 585,208+
    Ahaziah is killed for talking to the wrong god.
    2 Kg.1:2-4, 17
    ,

    2 Chr.22:7-9
    1 585,209+
    Burned to death by God
    2 Kg.1:9-12
    102 585,311+
    God sends two bears to kill children for making fun of Elisha’s bald head
    2 Kg.2:23-24
    42 585,343+
    Trampled to death for disbelieving
    Elijah

    2 Kg.7:17-20
    1 585,344+
    Jezebel
    2 Kg.9:33-37
    1 585,355+
    God sent lions to kill “some” foreigners
    2 Kg.17:25-26
    3+ 585,358+
    Sleeping Assyrian soldiers
    2 Kg.19:35
    ,

    2 Chr.32:21
    ,

    Is.37:36
    185,000 770,358+
    Saul
    1 Chr.10:14
    1 770,359+
    God delivers Israel into the hands of Judah
    2 Chr.13:15-17
    500,000 1,270,359+
    Jeroboam
    2 Chr.13:20
    1 1,270,360+
    “The Lord smote the Ethiopians.”
    2 Chr.14:9-14
    1,000,000 2,270,360+
    God kills Jehoram by making his bowels fall out
    2 Chr.21:14-19
    1 2,270,361+
    Ezekiel’s wife
    Ezek.24:15-18
    1 2,270,362+
    Ananias and Sapphira
    Acts 5:1-10
    2 2,270,364+
    Herod
    Acts 12:23
    ,

    BT
    1 2,270,365+

    Like

  116. Silliness, RE: “You need to own up to your own maladies” – I have a touch of hay fever, but other than that, I’m practically perfect!

    Like

  117. Arch,

    That’s exactly right. I can’t get past the cover of the Bible.

    Now if you could only know your own limitations you might see the world in an entirely new light.

    Like

  118. Nate, RE: “a list of the people God killed in the Bible” – and that doesn’t even count the flood!

    Like

  119. “Not sure if this will work, but here’s a list of the people God killed in the Bible:”

    You wasted your time. Whats the distinction between who he killed in the Bible and who died as a result of sin over the time that isn’t recorded? SOM or someone else brought this up before. People all die of something and its very rarely nice (even growing old isn’t) so its essentially a logic that says if God doesn’t allow us to live forever he’s evil

    terribly stupid stupid logic.

    Like

  120. “The real tragedy is that God says, “I create evil,” and you unwitting think you understand what God is saying.”

    SOM you give Arch too much credit. He and they they wouldn’t want to know. Its like a political soundbite. Its merely stated for a campaign moment.

    Like

  121. People all die of something and its very rarely nice (even growing old isn’t) so its essentially a logic that says if God doesn’t allow us to live forever he’s evil

    According to that line of logic murderers should get off, I guess, because everybody’s gonna die from something. And it could be something equally not nice.

    Stupid, stupid logic.

    Like

  122. “According to that line of logic murderers should get off, I guess, because everybody’s gonna die from something.”

    Murders don’t own someone else’s life. thinking that God who does is equivalent to men who don’t is also

    Stupid stupid logic

    Like

  123. thinking that God who does is equivalent to men who don’t is also

    I don’t think there is a God to own life, but if there was why would he break his own commandments by murdering people?

    I know, I got this one…they had it coming. It was the consequences of their sin.

    Like

  124. “I don’t think there is a God to own life, but if there was why would he break his own commandments by murdering people? ”

    If you thought phrasing it differently would make your equivalence work. Bad news.

    it didn’t.

    God owns life there is no commandment he broke that says that he cannot take back what is his. and yes that still breaks down to if He exists then we should live forever no matter what we do which is still a

    stupid stupid argument.

    Like

  125. God owns life there is no commandment he broke that says that he cannot take back what is his.

    Excuse me…who says Yahweh ”owns life”?

    Like

  126. I guess God invented the saying “Do as I say, not as I do.”

    Exactly. I guess anytime someone dies from anything it’s God taking back what is his? I had never thought about it in terms of “if God exists we should live forever”. That’s not even a thought that had entered into my mind. Because it’s just not…what happens naturally. It’s the thought of God deliberately causing the death of a person – which is normally considered murder – that gives pause.

    @Ark,

    As I remember it from my Christian days I believed God was sovereign and since he created us he could do anything he wanted to with us. Since he was the giver of life he could also be the taker of it. He was the author of life, the creator of it, so he owned it.

    Like

  127. That’s what I thought too, Ruth. I now see that such a perspective only devalues life. And if God exists, why would he want us to devalue such a gift? Therefore, if things like the genocide of the Canaanites don’t affect us, there’s a real problem.

    Like

  128. 3 Now go and strike Amalek and devote to destruction[a] all that they have. Do not spare them, but kill both man and woman, child and infant, ox and sheep, camel and donkey.’”
    — 1 Sam 15:3


    Like

  129. ” It’s the thought of God deliberately causing the death of a person – which is normally considered murder – that gives pause.”

    Umm how does God have someone’s life end undeliberately? lol

    Do you people even try to think?

    Like

  130. I’m sure it would be a great comfort to every parent in a child cancer ward to know that God is doing this on purpose. You should definitely volunteer at St Jude’s.

    Like

  131. “You don’t believe in “natural death” Mike?’

    Fill me in Nate. As far as I know every one dies when something that naturally used to work doesn’t anymore. You got the 411 different way hook me up.

    Like

  132. “Now go and strike Amalek

    Jiminy Cricks!! Nates got color photos of the Amalekites. this blog is going to be famous. LOL

    There’s some more of Mike’s brand of “Christian compassion.” You’re just so much like Jesus, Mike.

    Like

  133. Jiminy Cricks!! Nates got color photos of the Amalekites. this blog is going to be famous. LOL

    We were all wondering if we should post a picture of your backside, but we decided against it as you probably see your own ass every day so it wouldn’t come as much of a surprise, Mike.

    Like

  134. “There’s some more of Mike’s brand of “Christian compassion.” You’re just so much like Jesus, Mike.”

    Unless those are children that have died you just posted. you make ZERO sense. Hitting the booze early for independence Day nate?

    Like

  135. “We were all wondering if we should post a picture of your backside, ”

    You have pictures of my backside?
    Martha!
    I told you these atheists have no morals. Close the blinds
    ……… bunch a peepin toms.

    Like

  136. Oh, because the children of Amalek didn’t look like children?

    You’re all heart, Mike.

    No because you posted children who aren’t dead nate. Is it so hard to grasp the obvious for you?

    Save your fake superiority caring complex for someone who believes it (although I can;t think who that would be). What I love about how they look though is how God made them to begin with. 🙂

    Like

  137. RE: “People all die of something and its very rarely nice (even growing old isn’t) so its essentially a logic that says if God doesn’t allow us to live forever he’s evil
    That sounds like a great defense for the next serial killer to come down the pike – you should have suggested that to Ted Bundy!
    Hey, we all die SOMEtime – just because I didn’t allow the victim to live forever, suddenly I’m evil?” They’d HAVE to acquit —

    Like

  138. “I like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”
    — Mohandas Gandhi —

    Like

  139. T,

    Your point is well taken.

    Since the atheist must make of himself the god of his own private Idaho, the Lord of the Universe is necessarily small potatoes.

    Like

  140. Ruth,

    The Ten Commandments are a gift from God to men, his children.

    Since God is all-good and knows what is good and just, he has no need for Commandments.

    God is He who commands, not a human being who needs to be directed to the good.

    Like

  141. Ron,

    Might makes right is the result of atheism, not Christianity.

    Plato wrote about such justice in his, “Republic.”

    Socrates asked the character Thracymachus, “What is justice?”

    Thracymachus responded, “Justice is the advantage of the stronger.”

    Such is justice under atheism because there is no God, only people constantly at war with one another over who gets say what is just.

    Like

  142. Ark,

    Just as the artist owns his work by the power of creation, so the Lord of the Universe owns his own creation.

    God owning his own creation is what lends dignity to the work that men do.

    Even the smallest, most mundane job is lent dignity by the man who works it.

    Such is the ownership of God.

    Like

  143. RE: “Since the atheist must make of himself the god of his own private Idaho, the Lord of the Universe is necessarily small potatoes. – wrong again (still?), Silliness, “small potatoes” actually exist, your “Lord of the Universe,” not so much —

    Like

  144. Nate,

    Was the United States guilty of genocide for bombing the genocidal societies of Nazi German and Imperial Japan back to the Stone Age during World War II?

    Is a policeman guilty for killing a maniac who is about to wreak havoc on others?

    Atheists are necessarily immoral because they are unable to discern what is truly just and what is truly not just.

    Like

  145. Nate,

    The real problem is not being able to discern evil.

    The error you folks are making with regard to God is called moral equivalence.

    Killing the guilty is the same as killing the innocent because killing is killing, no?

    Like

  146. While Thracymachus may have said that justice is the advantage of the stronger, that’s not how modern society defines it.

    Like

  147. Nate,

    Tyranny is tyranny in any age.

    The sense of justice you hearken to is Christian.

    Christianity is the dynamo that powered the rise of the society you refer too.

    Like

  148. It’s not strictly Christian. Even Buddhism, which is atheistic, encourages justice, compassion, and morality. I won’t deny that Christianity has heavily influenced western culture, but that doesn’t mean we can’t function without it.

    Like

  149. Nate,
    One thing to understand about the Bible is that it concerns ancient people who were always on the brink of extinction.
    Children were precious because they were the embodiment of the future.
    So in the Bible, when children are somehow involved in calamity the author is using the children as a metaphor for having a future.
    “Evil has no future,” is what is being communicated by the passages that cause you and your atheist brethren so much heartburn.
    And certainly, God who is all good would communicate with man on understandable terms.
    What a beautiful message from the loving God, “Evil has no future.”

    Like

  150. Nothing. And had their upbringing been different, maybe history could have been. Or if appropriate, maybe if they could have been diagnosed with whatever their issues were they could have been treated. Either way, I’m very skeptical that some people are beyond any hope. Don’t forget the Bible’s claim about training up a child…

    Like

  151. A beautiful message? Killing children?

    No, it’s a message that shows just how much value primitive people expected their gods to place on human life.

    Like

  152. Nate,

    Only Christianity spawned modern society where human life has infinite value.

    In Buddhist and Hindu societies human life has the value of warm spit.

    Like

  153. Ruth,,

    To address men, God must act.

    The Bible teaches that God acts justly and with great mercy.

    Killing evil is morally good, don’t you think?

    Like

  154. And I’m not even sure how to respond to your comment about Buddhism, Hinduism, and Christianity. Guess I’ll just have to say that we profoundly disagree.

    Like

  155. Nate,

    Hallucinating an alternate universe where monsters baby Hitler and Joe Stalin could be raised the way the atheist sees fit doesn’t change the reality of our present, real universe.

    Had baby Hitler’s and baby Joe’s mommies exercised their atheist right to choose and had their little angels snuffed out in the womb, great evil would have been avoided.

    Isn’t abortion wonderful?

    Like

  156. And hallucinating a reality in which killing children can be described as “moral, good,” and “beautiful” isn’t conducive to having a rational conversation, but I guess that’s where we are.

    Like

  157. Nate,

    If you are unable to see as the ancients saw and interpret their symbols, how on earth can you expect to understand their literature?

    You are interpreting the Bible from your own modern atheist viewpoint when it was written by people from a time long ago and far, far away.

    Like

  158. Besides SOM, Hitler mostly killed non-Christians, so I guess he was one of God’s most loyal servants, huh? Killing evil is beautiful, right?

    Like

  159. Nate,

    Interpreting the symbols and metaphors of ancient people and cultures isn’t hallucinating.

    It’s called scholarship and open mindedness.

    Like

  160. It was written by ancient people in an ancient mindset, but we’re supposed to believe it was inspired by a God who transcends time?

    Like

  161. Nate,

    Sorry, but Hitler mass murdered over 12,000,000 innocents, 6,000,000 of which were Jews.

    The death toll from the genocidal maniacs of Nazi Germany and Imperial Japan was 64,000,000.

    But that pales before the real genocidal pros, the atheists who slaughtered over 100,000,000 innocents in less than a century.

    Like

  162. Surely they weren’t all innocents? I mean these guys we’re just doing the Lord’s work, SOM. Just like Moses and Joshua. Men after God’s own heart, just mowing down modern day Amelekites.

    Like

  163. Nate,

    You can disagree with the facts all you want but that doesn’t change the truth.

    People in Buddhist and Hindu society were dying like flies before they adopted Western ways, read that Christian ways.

    Like

  164. Nate,

    Excuse me, you’re right. There must have been 10 or 20 million non-innocent people who deserved to be slaughtered by genocidal maniacs.

    At this point you are arguing against yourself:

    God is evil because he committed genocide.

    Baby Hitler and Joe weren’t so bad because they mass murdered people who weren’t truly innocent.

    Like

  165. Ruth,

    Eternity is not a human construct.

    Eternity is a word that means timeless. To get a grip on God means getting a grip on the meaning of eternity.

    We are human and able to reason. We can do it. We can imagine an eternal God who is beyond time and space.

    But the atheist can’t do it, refuses to do it, in fact.

    That is why atheism is a brutal assault on human nature.

    Like

  166. No, I’m simply using your logic. If the genocide in the Bible was “beautiful,” then the modern ones couldn’t have been that bad. We all die anyway, right? Isn’t that what you guys were saying?

    And if your lucky, maybe you can even get window seats in Heaven so you can enjoy all the evil folks getting what they deserve.

    Like

  167. Right because humans don’t have reflexes to just automatically try to steady (especially precious) things which might be perceived as unsteady.

    Maybe God should have stricken King David dead as well for placing it on a cart instead of carrying it as God’s instructions said.

    Like

  168. Silenceofmind,

    It is easy to reason that since God supposedly created evil that this evil is an assault on human beings, causing their nature to be corrupted.

    Like

  169. Ruth,

    Since no life on Earth would exist without suffering (evil), suffering is good.

    Yet resisting suffering is what drives the development and evolution of all life.

    Therefore, one might gain the insight that life itself possesses divine nature.

    Like

  170. SOM you will be interested to know that Nate has admitted that if an atrocity was committed by his children or loved ones he would consider their other virtues ad track record in deciding whether they might have had cause. When asked why he would not consider to give the same benefit to God he replied that he could not see God physically so it was not the same

    SO all this moral outrage you see would be potentially less outrageous if the atrocity was committed by someone he loves and knows provided he could see them..

    Like

  171. Silenceofmind,

    Killing evil is morally good, don’t you think?

    I agree. Perhaps we should begin with the creator of evil?

    Like

  172. Ruth,

    From science we understand that it is the living who inherit their blessings or curses from past generations.

    Not surprisingly, the Bible teaches the same thing.

    Like

  173. Silenceofmind,

    At what point in the evolution of man would he have become responsible for his actions? At what point would he have been mature enough to discern right from wrong? Was there a fall? Or was man created with the propensity to sin?

    Like

  174. Ruth,

    Just as the atheist is unable to differentiate between the just kill in self-defense or the defense of the innocent and wanton murder, the atheist is unable to differentiate between natural evil and the premeditated murder committed by man.

    As I wrote earlier, since all of life would not exist without suffering, natural evil, in the end, promotes the good.

    But evil committed by men is not natural evil since it is the result of human will.

    The atheist errs in anthropomorphizing God.

    God is God, not man. He has his own attributes and nature which are different from the attributes and nature of man.

    Like

  175. Ruth,

    Life is necessary for evolution, not death.

    For only the living pass their seed to future generations.

    God, by annihilating evil, ensured a future of good for his people.

    Like

  176. Ruth,

    We only know that our universe was born in cataclysm and that life is born of the same.

    The movement of tectonic plates causes a tsunami that slaughters 1000’s while on the other side of the world a healthy baby is born to a loving mother.

    Like

  177. Silliness, RE: “We can imagine an eternal God who is beyond time and space.” – neither time nor space existed prior to the Big Bang, where was your god hanging out before that?

    Like

  178. You can lead a horse to water, Buana, but you cannot make it drink.” – you can lead a SOM to knowledge, but you cannot make it think.

    Like

  179. God was hanging out beyond time and space.” – and for just how long was he doing this?

    Like

  180. Hizfan,

    I think the problem we have here is a communication barrier. I will leave you to your gods because I don’t understand a thing of what you write

    Like

  181. Arch,

    I dont know why you relate the prayer with “death issue”.

    By much that you’ve said, I get the impression that you are a follower of Islam, which likely means that at least five times each day, …. …….. Think how much more time you would have, to hug your children, be with your family, just LIVE, if you didn’t feel compelled to follow what – to me – are such ridiculous rules?

    Actually, what is actually issue here?
    Prayer take about 5 minutes per times, it about 25 minutes per day. I have about 24 hours equal to 1440 minutes per day.
    It just a matter of time management and planning.
    Many human in this world were wasting time watching cinema, movies, getting drunk, smoking, getting tanned by the sun. Why don’t we banned this thing 1st?

    ridiculous rules?

    Prayer time occurs normally at early resting time and that time I can forget about my works, world, and problem. It can release my daily tension and bring peace in the heart by forgetting the world for a minutes. To sooth our heart when misery.
    It teach time discipline, daily management, enhance social community among ourselves, stretching muscle during resting, to have a STOP routine in our life after a buzy day. To keep clean our body at least 5 times a day by washing main part of “wudhu”. To keep remind ourselves by doing good every day. To remind and set our mind “To Be Success” in the world and afterlife.

    Of course, the main idea is still to remembering God and submit to Him.

    You look on the bowing action, etc. I look on overall concept of prayer. But…. the question is not related to the blog owner’s topic.

    Like

  182. Your only access to this ‘god’ is via the fallacious text you call the Old Testament Torah, and in the case of Christians the New Testament.
    However, I am nothing if not a reasonable man and If you can demonstrate this text was directly inspired or directed by this god then I may reconsider my point of view and give your comment due respect.

    Like

  183. Hifzan Shafiee,

    thank you for sharing a bit about what you believe,

    I agree with you that preparing to die is important, since we all cannot avoid it. Yet as you pointed out, none of us know when or where we will die, only God knows that. Every day is a gift. And I agree that life is not all about death, its about living 🙂 I believe its about loving people, and making genuine connections. I believe the most beautiful illustration of this is through Jesus Christ.

    If we can also work to make the world a better place for others in the small ways then that’s great. My conviction is that this can be done through loving God and loving people honestly. All we can do is try 🙂

    Hope your going well, and thank you again for your thoughts.

    SOM,

    I’ve noticed that your tone has changed a bit since we last spoke, its really nice to read actually, at least it seems that way to me.

    thank you for your kindness 🙂

    Like

  184. First, how would you be aware of Yahweh if not for the Torah,and second how does one have a relationship with Yahweh if not via the doctrine of the particular church one belongs to?

    Like

  185. ““God was hanging out beyond time and space.” – and for just how long was he doing this?’

    IN life there are rarely stupid questions but you happened to have found one. “How long” relates to the measurement of time in time

    Like

  186. Ark,

    Christianity existed for centuries before there was a Bible.

    Christianity, the teachings of Jesus, were passed by Living Tradition, from one generation to the next.

    Remember that there was no printing press until 1500AD and before the Church published the first Bible at the end of the 4th century, there was all sorts of “Christian” literature floating around authored by God knew who.

    Like

  187. I am fully aware of the dynamics of Christianity, SOM, as an outgrowth of Judaism, but you would never have known about Yahweh without the bible…or solely oral indoctrination, as was the norm in pre-scribal days.

    My question again, is, how does one have a relationship with Yahweh?

    Like

  188. “One of the neat things about being able to reason is that it takes man where no atheist has gone before.”

    ROFL….

    the beautiful thing about that SOM is it only takes a few questions to get to there.

    Like

  189. Ark,

    Jesus was a Jew whose brutal execution was arranged by the Jewish Establishment.

    During such occasions as the Road to Emmaus, Jesus took the time to explain the true meaning of Jewish scripture to his disciples.

    Had the Jews the foggiest idea what their scriptures meant they would have treated Jesus as the King of Kings like the Christians do.

    So you share at least one thing with your ancient Jewish brethren: a total lack of understanding of what the Bible actually means.

    That you people (atheists) are stuck with the ridiculous idea that God is a genocidal maniac is also proof that you wouldn’t know the dynamics of the Bible even if they walked up to you and gave you a Judas kiss on the cheek.

    Like

  190. @ SOM

    So you don’t actually know then, do you? You’re just leaning upon your own understanding.

    Thanks for your honesty.

    Like

  191. @ SOM

    Yes, very nice, Som, thank you. But this does not answer my question.
    You made the forthright statement that, ”Access to another person is not through a book but through a relationship.”
    So, once again, how does one have a relationship with Yahweh?
    Is is a simple, straightforward question. You obviously have such a relationship, so please tell me how?

    Like

  192. T,

    Your rapier-like wit always cuts to the chase with a clarity of thought that is truly rare among men.

    It’s amazing that the atheist response to you is like the apes’ response to the monolith in 2001: A Space Odyssey.

    They just grunt and belligerently wave their clubs toward the blue sky.

    Like

  193. Ark,

    Jesus taught that when we love our neighbor we are actually loving God.

    So we approach God first, through our personal relationships.

    That is why good parenting is so important.

    I recently told a priest where I first experienced the love of Jesus. At first, I could see he was expecting a load of spiritual BS.

    But I told the good priest that the love of Jesus was put into my heart by my parents. His sigh of relieve said, “Good answer!”

    This type of understanding does not come from a book, it comes from insight.

    And insight comes from God who speaks to the disciple in the silence of mind.

    Like

  194. Ron,

    If our own understanding comes by way of proper reasoning then it is reliable, not merely personal opinion.

    Because the atheist cannot reason, all that remains is personal opinion which is basically worthless since one personal opinion is equal to any other.

    Like

  195. SOM

    The point remains: you don’t know what happened before the big bang anymore than the next person. And you don’t know whether or not gods exists either. Your belief in such is based entirely upon the hearsay of others.

    Like

  196. Ron,

    We can reason out the nature of God which is Creator, all-powerful and all-knowing.

    By definition of the word, “creator” we can reason out that God is before time and space.

    “Before time and space” is the meaning of the word eternal.

    So you see, just by understanding the meaning of words we can reason our way to the answers that you, the atheist, find so incomprehensible.

    Like

  197. But I told the good priest that the love of Jesus was put into my heart by my parents.

    So therefore , awareness and a relationship with Yahweh, first develops, not by any sort of communication with ‘Him’, but rather via teaching from one’s parents or similar guardian, yes?

    Like

  198. Ark,

    Our relationships with other people IS God communicating to us.

    The whole thing is very natural and simple. Anybody can do it.

    But it is Christian teachings that show us how to do it right in spite of our fallen nature.

    Like

  199. Now youy are going off on a tangent and I will likely get lost.

    Clarify the point I made, if you will.
    The primary foundation of a relationship with Yahweh generally begins with instruction from ones parents or adult guardian’.
    Would you say this is correct?

    Like

  200. “It’s amazing that the atheist response to you is like the apes’ response to the monolith in 2001: A Space Odyssey.

    They just grunt and belligerently wave their clubs toward the blue sky.”

    scientists have finally broken down the sign language and grunts. Apparently the gestures and hand waving is translates as

    “We are smart. really. We really are. We have to be.”

    In their native dialect.

    Like

  201. “Our relationships with other people IS God communicating to us.

    The whole thing is very natural and simple. Anybody can do it.”

    SOM their whole idea is circular.

    “We believe there is nothing but materialism. Therefore if God is to have a relationship with us it can only be through sound and light waves”

    Like

  202. I was saying, Hifzan, that there were other, more important issues you could be spending your time doing, but you’ve described your prayer sessions as one would meditation, and from that standpoint, I can see where they could be valuable. Of course, I have no need for a god, and no belief in an afterlife, but meditation, the opportunity to clear one’s mind temporarily, can be mentally healthy.

    Have ytou ever asked yourself what you life might have been like, if you had been born into a family who believed in a different religion, or no religion at all?

    Like

  203. RE: “I am nothing if not a reasonable man” – Oh, that is SO true!

    Everywhere I go, as soon as they torture me into admitting that I know Ark, their jaws drop and the first words out of their mouths is, “What a reasonable man!” Why most of them admit that they first learned the meaning of the word, “dickhead” from the Arkster! What a guy, spreading knowledge wherever he goes! There should be more like him, that’s all I can say.

    So, Ark – can i get paid now? I DO have plans today, you know! It’s the anniversary of when they kicked the Poms out of our country. We celebrate that event with gusto – and sometimes a little salsa.

    Like

  204. “In a naturalistic worldview, the universe is indifferent to how you die. To introduce a benevolent god into the picture requires explanation”

    I missed this vacuous nonsense before. Any universe with or without a God requires explanation and even more so if you argue it is its own explanation/cause.

    Like

  205. before the Church published the first Bible at the end of the 4th century, there was all sorts of ‘Christian’ literature floating around authored by God knew who.” – that’s true, writing all kinds of nonsense, like your anonymous pseudo-Mark, pseudo-Matthew, pseudo-Luke and pseudo-John, with their BS stories about a census in Bethlehem, virgins having babies, guys walking on lakes and all that other crap.

    Like

  206. So, Ark – can i get paid now? I DO have plans today, you know! It’s the anniversary of when they kicked the Poms out of our country. We celebrate that event with gusto – and sometimes a little salsa.

    Tell me, not to put the mockers on your shenanigans, Senor Arch, but do the Native Americans share this passion for flipping the bird at the Poms as well, I wonder, or are they too busy with AA and casinos? 😉

    Like

  207. “The point remains: you don’t know what happened before the big bang anymore than the next person. And you don’t know whether or not gods exists either. Your belief in such is based entirely upon the hearsay”

    You got to love the chihuahua barks from atheists on this as their whole premise is that materialism exists beyond the big bang

    Like

  208. “<God was hanging out beyond time and space.” – sounds to me like he might have been banished from somewhere – you know somewhere beyond, “beyond time and space”. Instead of just saying, “Go to your room!” they simply sent him somewhere where he could do them no harm. I mean, think about the mentality of an entity that voluntarily chooses to hang out “beyond time and space” – why, I’ll bet his god banished him, which is where he got the idea and used it on Satan! “Monkey see –”

    Like

  209. SOM

    You postulate that a god “created” something out of nothing and that this god must be all-powerful and all-knowing. But you have no empirical evidence to validate that hypothesis. However, logic and reason can be used to disprove those those claims:

    1. A god and nothingness belong to mutually exclusive sets, because philosophically speaking, a god would be something and nothingness is… well nothing. A cause acting on nothing would have no effect so a god cannot cause something to exist. It would have to act on itself to create anything.

    That basically leaves you with pantheism.

    2. By definition, a perfect being is a complete being, i.e., a being having no needs or desires. Therefore, a being that creates things and/or desires worship and adoration cannot be said to be perfect.

    3. All-powerful and all-knowing are mutually exclusive traits. (In fact, being all-powerful is in itself contradictory. Can your god violate the rules of logic? If not, then it is not all-powerful. To argue that all-powerful has certain limits is to argue against the very definition of all-powerful.) An all-knowing being would be powerless to effect change or alter course, so an all-powerful being would not and could not know the future. Moreover, the god of the OT exhibits rage, anger, hatred, jealousy, vengefulness, grief and remorse—emotions that betray both a state of perfection and omniscience.

    Like

  210. Arch,

    The grandeur and power of the God of the Old Testament was witnessed by hundreds of thousands of thousands of people. That included Egyptians, Hebrews and about every tribe in the Palestine area,

    The grandeur and power of Jesus was witnessed by thousands and thousands of people from all over the Mediterranean and the Near East.

    The Apostles took the power of Jesus to be witnessed to places as far flung as India (Saint Thomas).

    That witness matches what is in the Good Book.

    On the other hand, atheism has no witness and it follows in the tradition of sophistry which has always been reviled by people interested in universal truth.

    Your intellectual stance is on quicksand into which you have sunk way over your head.

    Like

  211. Your rapier-like wit always cuts to the chase with a clarity of thought that is truly rare among men.” – I think SOM’s in love – not that there’s anything wrong with that —

    Like

  212. Ron,

    The universe and everything in it is evidence that God must exist.

    Modern discoveries in cellular and molecular biology and cosmology scream, “GOD EXISTS! BEHOLD HIS GRANDURE!”

    Evidence that God exists is readily observable.

    Like

  213. RE: “If our own understanding comes by way of proper reasoning then it is reliable, not merely personal opinion.” – who defines, “proper reasoning”?

    Like

  214. do the Native Americans share this passion for flipping the bird at the Poms as well?” – Naah, they’re too busy flipping the bird at us.

    Like

  215. Ron, PLEASE don’t confuse SOM with logic – his head could explode, and I ain’t cleanin’ that up!

    Like

  216. Ron,

    Just as the evidence for a murder is not the murder, evidence for God is not God.

    You have just been subjected to systematic thinking that is also common sense.

    Like

  217. Actually, “The grandeur and power of the God of the Old Testament” was WRITTEN to have been “witnessed by hundreds of thousands of thousands of people,” by unknown, superstitious, unconfirmed authors whose reliability we can never check.

    Like

  218. SOM

    The existence of murderers has been established by way of observation (i.e. seeing people kill others.) We’d have to observe entire universes coming into being from nothing before we can establish the existence of a creator—and thus far we haven’t. So my point stands. And you haven’t addressed my previous three points yet, either.

    Like

  219. @ SOM

    Our relationships with other people IS God communicating to us.

    Still waiting for a response to my question:

    Clarify the point I made, if you will.

    The primary foundation of a relationship with Yahweh generally begins with instruction from ones’ parents or adult guardian.

    Would you say this is correct, SOM?

    Like

  220. “Senor Arch, but do the Native Americans share this passion for flipping the bird at the Poms as well, I wonder, or are they too busy with AA and casinos?”

    Well said, Ark.

    “I celebrated Thanksgiving in an old-fashioned way. I invited everyone in my neighborhood to my house, we had an enormous feast, and then I killed them and took their land.” Jon Stewart

    Like

  221. Arch,

    What puts the lie to your analysis is again your over reliance on books as a measure of credibility.

    For example, the Jewish Passover is a tradition that has been passed down through the millennia essential unchanged.

    And that tradition matches what is in the Good Book.

    Your over reliance on books is probably an artifact of your Protestant upbringing (the sola scriptura doctrine).

    Like

  222. Ron,

    What you write is simply not true.

    Mankind has discovered a great deal about the universe by inference based on the laws of nature.

    Under your protocol we would know almost nothing about anything. That is why your philosophy of scientism is an erroneous mode of thought.

    Like

  223. The Passover: aka the night that God allegedly killed all the first-born Egyptian males because God had deliberately with malice aforethought hardened Pharaoh’s heart against releasing the Jews, so that God could demonstrate its badass powers to the Israelites.

    Like

  224. “However, logic and reason can be used to disprove those those claims”

    News Flash in a rare event Ron is about to attempt to reason. Will he succeed? Or will he flop

    ” A cause acting on nothing would have no effect”

    A cause acting would be mean there was something to act so there would not be nothing

    EPIC FLOP!

    ” so a god cannot cause something to exist. It would have to act on itself to create anything.”

    or create something from his own power

    Flop!

    “basically leaves you with pantheism.’

    Thats not pantheism you nit. Pantheism is that everything is God. You are trying to apply physical consistency rules in nature to the supernatural and its an EPIC fail. God has the power to create things by command

    FLOP!

    “2. By definition, a perfect being is a complete being, i.e., a being having no needs or desires.”

    BY definition the ability to extend beyond yourself to love other is perfect completeness. That state requires something to love and relationships to be formed so perfection NEEDS someone to love. the idea that perfection or completion has no needs is a crock

    EPIC FLOP!

    ” Therefore, a being that creates things and/or desires worship and adoration cannot be said to be perfect.”

    The requirement in the worlds major theisms is not that God requires love for himself but from men because it is unrighteous and wrong for men not to identify truth which includes who he is. Worship is nothing more than men recognizing to God the truth of who he is. Buy a clue

    FLOP!

    “3. All-powerful and all-knowing are mutually exclusive traits. (In fact, being all-powerful is in itself contradictory. Can your god violate the rules of logic? If not, then it is not all-powerful.”

    STUPIDITY CUBED. Logic/WISDOM IS God’s character. So you have just argued that unless God defies himself he cannot be all powerful

    Stupid stupid stupid argument

    ” To argue that all-powerful has certain limits is to argue against the very definition of all-powerful.) An all-knowing being would be powerless to effect change or alter course”
    so an all-powerful being would not and could not know the future”

    You nit. An all powerful; being would not be bounded by time and therefore would know all the future at once. All events would be under his control in an eternal now but manifesting within time at particular moments for those inside time – not himself

    EPIC FLOP!

    “. Moreover, the god of the OT exhibits rage, anger, hatred, jealousy, vengefulness, grief and remorse—emotions that betray both a state of perfection and omniscience”

    Teenage concept – Love requires acts of anger. jealously and compassion. When you grow up and have children to protect you will get a grip on that reality.It also requires within earth time changes in relationship based on earthly circumstances

    Go back to posting videos, quips and image links Ron. Leave the thinking to grown ups

    Flop after flop after flop

    Like

  225. Man has discovered a great deal about the universe based on the laws of nature, none of which require “God did it” as an explanation.

    Napoleon: M. Laplace, they tell me you have written this large book on the system of the universe, and have never even mentioned its Creator.

    Laplace: I have no need for this hypothesis.

    A Budget of Paradoxes, Volume II by Augustus De Morgan

    Like

  226. “Just as the evidence for a murder is not the murder, evidence for God is not God.

    You have just been subjected to systematic thinking that is also common sense.”

    ROFL……NIcely done!

    Poor kid doesn’t know the difference between a truism and evidence either.

    Like

  227. “Man has discovered a great deal about the universe based on the laws of nature, none of which require “God did it” as an explanation.”

    and umm these laws of nature? What are their explanation? since you um already know they don’t require God did it then surely you must know what their explanation is.

    Enlighten us.

    Like

  228. TBlacksman’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
    That struts and frets his hour upon the Internet
    And then is heard no more. It is a tale
    Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
    Signifying nothing.

    Like

  229. Ark,

    I am unaware that you have made any points.

    All you’ve done is hallucinate the usual atheist alternate reality and then demand that people in real reality respond to your hallucination.

    I don’t say that to be disrespectful, it’s just the way atheism works.

    Like

  230. “Mankind has discovered a great deal about the universe by inference based on the laws of nature.”

    Don’t worry about that SOM. Ron is about to tell us the explanation of the laws of nature since he claims to know they do not require God.

    Like

  231. “TBlacksman’s but a walking shadow, a poor player
    That struts and frets his hour upon the Internet
    And then is heard no more. It is a tale
    Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury,
    Signifying nothing.”

    See now thats better. You are learning the Peter principlee. Stick to what you are good at – copy and paste, post a few links and quips. Don’t strain yourself with too much else. It won’t work anyway.

    Like

  232. Ron,

    The Passover celebrates the Hebrew liberation from slavery.

    It is the forerunner of Jesus Christ who came later on to free all of mankind from slavery to sin.

    The Jewish Passover uses the blood of a lamb. The Christians see Jesus as the lamb of God.

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  233. Ron,

    Gods existence is outside the laws of nature.

    That makes the nature of his existence completely different than the existence of created things.

    The error you are committing here is equating classes of two things that are completely different.

    In essence, you the atheist, have created God in your image and have found him wanting.

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  234. “Sounds about right…..very, er, dare I say, Christian?”

    Yes, Christians hyped up on power, testosterone and an addictive neurotransmitter, dopamine. In his book “The Winner Effect: How Power Changes Your Brain”, Neurologists Ian Robertson writes:

    “Testosterone and one of its by-products called 3-androstanediol, are addictive, largely because they increase dopamine in a part of the brain’s reward system called the nucleus accumbens. But too much power – and hence too much dopamine – can disrupt normal cognition and emotion, leading to gross errors of judgment and imperviousness to risk, not to mention huge egocentricity and lack of empathy for others.”

    This helps to explain why so many wars and upheavals are caused by men, although that doesn’t exclude women. But I think we can safely assume that most wars have been started by men. The problem with the Abrahamic god (though myth) was that he promoted a hyper-masculine culture and war. The Abrahamic god exhibited primate behavior, much like alpha male baboons and chimpanzees.

    A study out of the University of Leeds demonstrated that approximately 95% of people follow in crowds without their conscious awareness. They follow like sheep. Jesus compared his followers to sheep. Alpha males who are slaves to their biopharmacy don’t seem to have problems getting people to follow — and the patriarchs, i.e., Moses, made it worth their men’s while by splitting the spoils stolen from other tribes and taking virgin girls as sex slaves and servants. Numbers 31.

    There is an excellent article by Robert Sapolsky “Peace Among Primates” who studied the behavior of baboons in the savannas for over 2 decades. He writes his observations of the Forest Troop baboons in the section “Left behind”, and noted the antisocial behavior among the high testosterone, high dopamine alpha male baboons. What was interesting about this was that their behavior was nearly identical to the behavior of the Abrahamic god, Moses and other patriarchs of the OT who went to battle for Yahweh, Jesus daddy.

    When half the alpha male baboons died by eating tainted meat, the dynamics of the Forest Troop changed dramatically. They became more prosocial. In the words of Sapolsky, they created a baboon utopia. As noted in the article, genes and environment are intertwined. In other words, environmental conditions turn genes off and on.

    There are several other conditions that lead to antisocial behavior, like damage to the prefrontal cortex. Brain injury is the signature wound of war. So, theoretically, if a god promotes war (as seen in the OT), he (male) is increasing the likelihood of brain injuries, which increases the likelihood of antisocial behavior. I should also note that child abuse is the 3rd leading cause of damage to the prefrontal cortex. Although Stalin and Hitler were birthed by religious Christian mothers, they were brutally beaten by their alcoholic fathers.

    I also recommend an excellent Stanford lecture by world renowned psychologist Philip Zimbardo. He was the one who headed the Stanford Experiment. The eye opening lecture can be found on YouTube: “Journey From the Psychology of Evil to the Psychology of Heroism”. He explains why the United States military police guards/soldiers, who had been prosocial before they went to Iraq, exhibited very antisocial, inhumane, abusive behavior towards Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib Prison. I’ll post the video in my next comment just in case Nate has his blog links set to default.

    There are many more causes that lead to antisocial behavior, and by gaining a better understanding of biology, neuropsychology, brain plasticity and gene expression, we can create environments that will greatly curtail antisocial behavior. Just ask the Forest Troop baboons. No god needed.

    Liked by 1 person

  235. Your over reliance on books is probably an artifact of your Protestant upbringing (the sola scriptura doctrine).” – Silliness, you should try and read one sometime – I’m sure there’s someone you can ask about words of more than one syllable —

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  236. <"your philosophy of scientism is an erroneous mode of thought” – mysticism is SO much more accurate!

    Like

  237. Arch,

    I can tell when I’ve busted your chops by the pugnacity of your responses and the light year distance of your response to the actual topic at hand.

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  238. Arch,

    Systematic thinking and common sense only seem mystic to you because you’re an atheist.

    Get a brain of your own and train it to be human and things will start to make sense to you.

    I guarantee it.

    Like

  239. Sounds about right…..very, er, dare I say, Christian?

    “When the white missionaries came to Africa they had the Bible and we had the land. They said ‘Let us pray.’ We closed our eyes. When we opened them, we had the Bible and they had the land.”
    — Desmond Tutu —

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  240. ALL of the gods have been created in our image, and all have been found wanting eventually.

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  241. Arch,

    As I stated earlier there is no need for the evidence you require. Your demand is bogus.

    Even if the Bible were total fiction and total myth, its wisdom and messages dazzle, just like Homer’s Iliad and Odyssey.

    You are so attached to your own private hallucinated version of how the Bible should be that you are unable to learn what it actually means and unable to connect your contrived concepts to reality.

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  242. I can tell when I’ve busted your chops” – Oh really! And by which of your monosyllabic pearls of wisdom have you deluded yourself into believing you’ve accomplished this?

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  243. Arch,

    Sorry but you don’t get to tell everyone in the human race what every god or God should be especially because you don’t believe in any gods or God.

    Firstly, you don’t have the authority to do so and secondly to place belief requirements on the entire human race for something that you don’t believe in, is irrational, hypocritical, tyrannical and delusional.

    Leave to Arch to win the trifecta of everything that is wrong with atheism.

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  244. Arch,

    You are only able to hear monosyllables because you suffer from various sensory, emotional and intellectual impairments.

    But leave it to the atheist to blame his impairments on others.

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  245. Arc,

    I may not have family member that born into others religion. You ride a car through road, you can easily find temple, church. I been exposed to many religion since I was kid.
    Malaysia, my country is one of most diverse religion in the world. You open the morning TV, you watch 2 hrs Hindu prayer wasting their milk by bathing their scripture and chanting their prayer. Every Thaipusam, we can watch the largest Hindu outside India, hurting themself by carrying “cavadi”

    Every Chinese New Years, you can watch the gods flying around fighting with demons.
    Every Christmas, you watch the Santa going through the fire funnel to give a gift to kids. And Santa name’s never occurs in Bible.
    If, my Islam are being teach through solely culture and practice of Muslim in certain country.

    If that the case, with my engineering’s way of thought, I assume my religion today is Agnostic. Luckily for me, my religion I learn is from the book and my family were emphasize on education.

    Still, the question are not related to blog’s post.

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  246. RE: “with my engineering’s way of thought, I assume my religion today is Agnostic.” – Hifzan, I have just gained respect for you, as a free-thinker – it doesn’t matter to me that you’ve not chosen to be an atheist, only that you have chosen to think for yourself.

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  247. RE: “But leave it to the atheist to blame his impairments on others.</em" – translation from SOM-ese: "I know you are, but what am I?"

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  248. Arc,

    Why I mention Agnostic not Atheist. Being Atheist, you lost too much…

    I don’t think Atheist are logic and many of them are just following “Atheist” because of “popular culture”. No fundamental to sustain a community. More emphasize sexual behavior than social behavior. Emphasize on individualist rather community. Don’t have any institution to reconcile among each others if there are a dispute.

    Even though, I believe Christian like to fool people. I do believe Christian is better than Atheist.

    Atheist is like China/ North Korea.
    Before they have power, they called it socialist (the idea/fundamental is great), but when come to implementation it bullshit, it become a communism.

    Being Agnostic, they understand certain thing, but if they don’t understand, they accept it. Being Atheist, they dont understand but still think they were understand it. Atheist is a person who think they are a god himself (think they know everything). A dangerous mind…..

    As individual, you may success. As community, you will collapsed.

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  249. Hifzan, I get the impression, that you don’t really understand what atheism is all about. It’s not intended to hold a community together, it’s simply a disbelief in a god. It occurs to me, that if a community needs a religion to hold it together, it has a lot more problems than they realize. Who knows what it would be like if it had no religion? Many Northern European countries, especially those in Scandanavia, have a very small percentage of theists, yet somehow their communities manage to hold themselves together – they find other points of common interest.

    “Don’t have any institution to reconcile among each others if there are a dispute.” – that’s what courts are for.

    “Being Atheist, they dont understand but still think they were understand it. Atheist is a person who think they are a god himself (think they know everything).” – all people are individuals, and you will find some who DO think they “know everything,” but as you can see, right here on this board, there are at least two theists who think they know it all.

    The truth is, regarding how the universe was created, how life came to be, and where things are going in the future, moth atheists will readily admit they they don’t know, whereas most theists will tell you exactly how everything came to be and where it’s going, even though they know no more than anyone else.

    “Philosophy consists of questions that may never be answered. Religion consists of answers that may never be questioned.”
    — Ken Harding —

    Here’s something else that might interest you:

    “Custom, tradition, and intellectual laziness lead men to follow their religious leaders blindly. Religions have been the sole cause of the bloody wars that have ravaged mankind. Religions have also been resolutely hostile to philosophical speculation and to scientific research. The so-called holy scriptures are worthless and have done more harm than good, whereas the writings of the ancients like Plato, Aristotle, Euclid, and Hippocrates have rendered much greater service to humanity.”
    — Abū Bakr Muhammad ibn Zakariyā al-Razi —

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  250. Arc,

    If the Atheism is define as “A person who don’t believe in God”. I have many example surround me. Living in SouthEast Asia, you are open to most any idea/philosophy of the world. It just a matter to look for it/ or not.

    that’s what courts are for.

    Religious country also have civil court…

    Theist in your idea is majorly “Christian”. Muslim will say “I don’t know most of the thing”. There is a proverb in Arabic that origin from Imam Malik conversation: “Saying I don’t know is half of the knowledge.”and: “Whoever abandons saying ‘I don’t know’ has put his knowledge in peril.” This is one of the 6 principle of faith, Belief in UnSeen/Unknown. Which have another mean, I believe that I don’t know everything and can not see everything.

    When Christian keep saying they know everything, they already put them self in contradiction and hot seat. I have many conversation with Christian, and they like to answer it even it they don’t know. This will killed them eventually,

    “Custom, tradition, and intellectual laziness lead men to follow their religious leaders blindly.

    I agree with above, but I disagree with all others.

    only about 10% of Iran converted to Islam during the relatively Arab-centric Umayyad (661–750) period. Beginning in the Abassid (750–1258) period, with its mix of Persian as well as Arab rulers, the Muslim percentage of the population rose. As Persian Muslims consolidated their rule of the country, the Muslim population rose from approximately 40% in the mid-9th century to close to 100% by the end of the 11th century.

    wiki

    I also can concluded that : After the Razi’s death, most population converted to Islam and gain highest renaissance which later being called “Islamic golden age”. Then later being stop due to Mongol invasion. If religion is opposed the science, Persian are suppose to collapsed after Razi death. The situation are totally opposite.

    We both came from 2 different school of thought. We will going opposed who right and who is wrong. If Atheist is master of philosophy and kalam (logic), Islam is maestro of philosophy and kalam (logic) too. From history that I read, I hardly read that atheist’s logic can win against Muslim’s logic.

    But future is unknown, let look forward..

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  251. Hifzan, RE: “Theist in your idea is majorly ‘Christian’.” – I’m not entirely clear as to what you are saying. If you are saying that when I think of theists, I think of only Christians, that would not be true. If you are saying that most of the theists I know are Christians, being an American, that would be true, although I have had both Iranian and Iraqi, as well as Lebanese friends, all of whom were Muslim.

    I further agree that there was a period, during what I call Islam’s Golden Age, when the Islamic countries kept the flame of knowledge and learning alive for the world, while Europe was undergoing its Dark Ages, due almost entirely to the repression fostered there by religion. We owe them a great debt for that.

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  252. Thank you, Nate. I’ve been following your post since you first published it. I want to share a link with you that reflects the rumblings that are happening right now in America among the very wealthy Christian right and we have every reason to be concerned. This ties in with your OP. From the article:

    “Throughout Scripture,” Leithart declared in a passage from his 2012 book Between Babel and Beast, “the only power that can overcome the seemingly invincible omnipotence of a Babel or a Beast is the power of martyrdom, the power of the witness to King Jesus to the point of loss and death.”

    (David) “Lane wrote in his WND essay, elaborating on Leithart’s theme, “‘What is our goal?’ To wage war to restore America to our Judeo-Christian heritage with all of our might and strength that God will give us. You ask, ‘What is our aim?’ One word only: victory, in spite of all intimidation and terror.”

    Lane’s essay is a clarion call for a contemporary religious war against the supposedly pagan government of the United States. And his notion of war is not just a metaphor for politics. He even called for a contemporary “Gideon” and a “Rahab the Harlot” to rise to the occasion. Gideon is the Biblical figure who leads an Israelite army in an ethnic cleansing of the Midianites who were both oppressors and worshiped false gods.”

    http://www.politicalresearch.org/2014/06/11/rumblings-of-theocratic-violence/

    I used to work for American Family Association (AFA) — Family Family Radio (AFR) — mentioned in the article — when I was a Christian. I saw this same war mentality and it drove me to the deepest despair. I kept asking myself “where is the love?” Their inhumane ideologies were so bad I had to seek counseling. Working for Christian AFA/AFR was the beginning of my deconversion process. I wrote a recent post about how I fell in love with Jesus and the mind-control techniques that have been used by Christian revivalists (clergy and evangelist) since 1735. This website was brought to my attention yesterday, and I found the article today. In it, it mentions mind-control strategies that get people in an altered state, a suggestive state, exactly what I experienced in church as a Christian and wrote about in the recent blog post I mentioned.

    This is why we simply can’t let are guard down as noted at the very end of the article I linked above, and especially in light of the SCOTUS decision on Monday. The Christian right is very war-like, and they will stop at nothing to make damn sure that America is under the rule of the Yahweh war god, Jesus daddy.

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  253. “This is why we simply can’t let are guard down as noted at the very end of the article I linked above, and especially in light of the SCOTUS decision on Monday. The Christian right is very war-like, and they will stop at nothing to make damn sure that America is under the rule of the Yahweh war god,”

    Insert article about some fringe personality add rhetoric and shake and stir. Who could be more militant than the new atheist leader whose whole mission in life is to stamp out anyone believing in religion? So much so that harris stated in his book its conceivable that people should be killed for just their faith (begging desperately afterwards it was taken out of context as if he and intelligent man committed words to paper he did not know had a certain resonance) .

    Besides why blame the christian right? Isn’t it some cosmological element that affects their behavior. Fix outer space I say 🙂

    P.S. keep your guard and rhetoric up. Without the assistance of the almighty I guess the minority always win.

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  254. @Nate,

    You said:

    Therefore, if things like the genocide of the Canaanites don’t affect us, there’s a real problem.

    This is how I feel as well. It’s both disturbing and scary when we see people still trying to justify genocide. We don’t need to grow up in a Christian nation to see how a religion that has the concept of a God that cares about and loves it’s creation and also justifies genocide is self-contradictory. When I converted to Christianity I converted because I saw it as a truth and revelation representing moral goodness, not as one that justified genocide and the other atrocities in the bible. I can’t count how many times I have heard Christians declare Islam as false for it’s atrocities, but we are belittled because we reject the same in the bible.

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  255. “This is how I feel as well. It’s both disturbing and scary when we see people still trying to justify genocide. We don’t need to grow up in a Christian nation to see how a religion that has the concept of a God that cares about and loves it’s creation and also justifies genocide is self-contradictory. ”

    God taking people’s life is called death. Genocide is men taking men’s life without God’s say so. The self contradiction is all in your head and of your own definition.

    What’s next? Claiming the death penalty is murder? Probably but most of society doesn’t go with your definitions

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  256. “T — I’ll clarify — do you worship Yahweh, Jesus’ daddy?”

    Either the disturbance in the Andromeda galaxy is long lasting or your incoherence is not a product of it. Wait….hold on… New data with possible explanation.

    Ahh Meteor shower through 2 PM EST

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  257. “Are you in love with Yahweh?”

    Check your vinyl record. It seems to be scratched. Possible result of tiny fragments from the meteor shower if you have been outside. If not make sure to cover and give your cat a pedicure.

    or switch to digital.

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  258. “Why won’t you answer the question? It’s not a difficult question to answer. A simple yes or no will do.”

    I answer questions within a construct of logic and dialogue. outside of that – no go. Its kind of Like what I do to door to door salesmens. I just say no thanks no matter what questions they ask.

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  259. @T — So you are in love with Yahweh and therefore eternal life in paradise awaits you? Well you hope, anyways.

    Those of us who are not getting a neurochemical reward and who’s neural circuitry has not been deactivated by those reward neurohormones/transmitters can see the atrocities committed and condones by Yahweh and are repulsed, but you seemingly justify them.

    Neurological studies show that deep attachment/bonding (in your case — to Yahweh) has activated a part of your brain’s reward system that coincides with areas rich in oxytocin and vasopressin receptors as well as dopamine. The neurological studies show that when you are in love certain neural circuitry deactivates a common set of regions associated with negative emotions and judgment. Neuropharmacological studies show that dopaminergic (dopamine) activation is the leading neurochemical feature associated with religious activity.

    Love can be blind to those who have a profoundly deep love/bond/attachment for their god.

    T — I’ve read all these comments (including yours) to get a better idea of your personality and where you are coming from. I don’t think you are addicted to power which releases lots and lots of testosterone and dopamine — but you appear to be are deeply in love with your god which releases other powerful reward chemicals. I also suspect that an afterlife is very important to you — and death anxiety is very common among our species.

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  260. T — I would also like to mention that I personally don’t have a problem with people believing in god or gods. Belief/faith is personal and should be private — between the person and their choice of god they want to worship. I understand the evolutionary purpose of faith.

    But when these personal faiths start to intervene with the well being of other people’s lives, their faiths, beliefs and non-beliefs, then we have problems. And we certainly have serious problems in America because many people believe that we all should worship Yahweh.

    Is this your belief as well — that all the world should worship Yahweh — the biblical god? Jesus said “I and the Father (Yahweh) are One”.

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  261. “Neurological studies show that deep attachment/bonding (in your case — to Yahweh) has activated a part of your brain’s reward system that coincides with areas rich in oxytocin and vasopressin receptors as well as dopamine.”

    I’ve read your clap trap before Neuro. You pretend to the uninitiated like you have the brain etc figured out where no one in the field claims to know this. I have a background in Psychology – peddle your wannabe expertise to someone else.

    Meanwhile every REAL expert in the field knows that anyone attempting a diagnosis/mental assessment over the internet much less blog comments is a blithering ignorant fool (not a mental assessment but acceptable as fact)

    Attempting it as you did – your hereby qualify. Congratulations.

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  262. “Neuropharmacological studies show that dopaminergic (dopamine) activation is the leading neurochemical feature associated with religious activity. ”

    Dopamine is activated in a number of pleasurable experiences you nitwit. Further Christians are not always “In love” with spiking dopamine levels (EVERYONE experiences spikes). Sometimes faith is downright unpleasurable (especially when you have to repent or realize you are not right with God ). Furthermore people at low levels of dopamine still believe in God.

    You are hach who uses a few studies (probably found on Google scholar) in order to back up your biases and pretend you are supporting them by science. Plain and simple.

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  263. “But when these personal faiths start to intervene with the well being of other people’s lives, their faiths, beliefs and non-beliefs, then we have problems. And we certainly have serious problems in America because many people believe that we all should worship Yahweh.”

    Then leave Neuoro. Vamoose. Giddy up. I’ll help you pack. Don’t let the door hit your rear end on your way thought the plane’s door because telling people they must keep their faith personal and make sure it does not intersect with anything public is just code words for

    We don’t want everyone to have free speech.

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  264. T,

    After reading your conversation with Neuro I found my dopamine levels falling off the cliff.

    I hope an extra dose of my Prozac can help me.

    If it can’t, lie to me like any good Christian would. Reality is just too much for me at the moment.

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  265. @T –You made yourself very clear and I understand your rejection to this research. As I mentioned, I don’t see a problem with you wanting/needing to believe in god. What I do see a problem with is if you believe that all the world should believe in your Yahweh, and his warlike, tribal methodologies.

    Yahweh is a war god much like many war gods that came before him. Yahweh promotes neurochemically addictive, hyper-masculine behavior (primarily among males) and the research shows that when there are too many hyper-masculine humans in the world, it becomes very dysfunctional — out of balance. The result is a disruption in normal cognition and emotion, gross errors in judgment, an imperviousness to risk, and lack of empathy for others. This can be said of any culture, whether religious or not.

    Yahweh is a mythological war god. Yahweh is no loving father figure except to those who bow down (often in fear) to the dictates of this dictator.

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  266. @Judah First: Haven’t seen you comment in a while over here – glad to see you commenting again! Your comments are always very thought provoking.

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  267. T — studies show that primates get a dopamine reward for being submissive. A study out of Wake Forest University demonstrated how dominant monkeys have more dopamine than subordinates — and these submissive monkeys want to be recognized by the dominant monkeys. This helps to insure their survival if they get in good with them. It insures that their genes will be passed on. Religions that promote dominant male gods act in the same way. If you submit and are acknowledge by these alpha male gods, in your case, Yahweh, you get to spend eternity in heaven. Right?

    A study published in Current Biology describes how primates will give up their cherry juice reward in order to view images of dominant specie members. [ S.V Shepherd, R.O. Deaner and M.L. Platt, 2006, Social Status Gates Social Attention in Monkeys, Current Biology 16(4):119-20.]

    Studies have also shown that when one chooses to suffer for the sake of being acknowledge they get a neurochemical reward.

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  268. Neuro,

    Thank you, Ms. Professor, but Christianity isn’t about being submissive it is about being assertive.

    Further, sadomasochism is a mental illness, not Christian doctrine.

    Christian doctrine is that no greater love has a man, than to lay his life down for his brother.

    That is also the ethic of the US soldier at arms who is trained to annihilate the enemy but also to sacrifice his life for his brother at arms and those men, women and children he seeks to defend from evil.

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  269. “You made yourself very clear and I understand your rejection to this research.”

    I don’t reject the research you nit. I reject the conclusions you draw from it which are contradicted by the fact that even in a low dopamine level people still believe in God defying your claims.

    “What I do see a problem with is if you believe that all the world should believe in your Yahweh, and his warlike, tribal methodologies.”

    Again then move if you have a problem. Evangelicals, Jews, .Muslims under freedom of speech have the right to share their faith. Giddy up to a country that doesn’t have freedom of speech or that doesn’t operate a democracy. You are in the vast minority and in a democracy the majority has the right to express their will.

    “Yahweh is a war god much like many war gods that came before him. ”

    Your research on Dopamine shows any papers stating that? Nope. Which is why I properly called you hack trying to use science to say what it doesn’t say anything about.Thanks for proving my point

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  270. “T — studies show that primates get a dopamine reward for being submissive. A study out of Wake Forest University demonstrated how dominant monkeys have more dopamine than subordinates”

    and great Swami? Lets see how well submission is applicable to a christian? Who here thinks all my posts here demonstrate my sublime gentleness and submission. ROFl

    and since you all rubberstamp what Nate says on this blog and your own comrades almost without question your dopamine levels should be off the charts while reading this blog

    Hmmmm– that might explain why you at this time demonstrate no sense. -= a point to consider.

    “A study published in Current Biology describes how primates will give up their cherry juice reward in order to view images of dominant specie members. [ S.V Shepherd, R.O. Deaner and M.L. Platt, 2006, Social Status Gates Social Attention in Monkeys, Current Biology 16(4):119-20.] ”

    What a twit? LOL. That study is about gazing instincts. You’re jumping from dopamine to gazing patterns confirming your true hack status trying desperately to piece together various studies NONE OF WHICH support your claims about God as if they did.

    The greatest hilarity of your recent Google scholar rip and paste is that you are using a study about primates PHYSICALLY SEEING pictures as applicable to the worship of an INVISIBLE God

    ROFL – Like I said before – What a Nit!

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  271. “T — do you believe all the world should bow down and worship your Yahweh god? Are you on a mission (the Great Commission) to make sure they do??”

    Nope since my book says that all the world will not bow down and that only few find the way. Why would I be on a mission to make sure that what my book says won’t happen will happen?

    Neuro you are about to set a record for atheists at how fast they can show their full range of ignorance

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  272. “After reading your conversation with Neuro I found my dopamine levels falling off the cliff.”

    The amusing thing about it is with depression being rampant you would think the falling dopamine levels would swell the ranks of atheists at least to a point where they could claim high double digits in most polls

    Apparently atheism must be so pathetic they choose something else instead like psyche wards.

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  273. @Victoria,

    Some of your recent comments as well as the justifications we’ve seen of genocide here remind me of this video you posted a while back on your blog. You can see the justification of ethnic cleansing at 3:22 in the video:

    Very disturbing and scary stuff. And people wonder why non-believers voice their opinions on this stuff. The fact that there are people who still try to justify these atrocities is the reason why both believers as well as non-believers need to continue to speak against it. Those who justify it even try to say that society has some kind of different definition for genocide based on whether or not God sanctions it. Never mind that practically all groups who justify their genocidal activities claim that their God has sanctioned it.

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  274. T,

    You are absolutely right!

    The poor, hopelessly depressed sot that I am, I only lasted 30 seconds as an atheist.

    I really don’t see how atheists can abuse themselves with such self-righteous fervor.

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  275. “Some of your recent comments as well as the justifications we’ve seen of genocide here remind me of this video you posted a while back on your blog”

    if you have both seen it then why post it?? You don’t seriously think we watch your silly videos. Neuro’s references to papers that do not support his conclusions are bad enough.

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  276. “I really don’t see how atheists can abuse themselves with such self-righteous fervor”

    Neuro has already shown you the way. Can you imagine the dopamine rush thinking you are more righteous than God?

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  277. T — As I mentioned earlier, I see no issues with faith — and there are many caring Christians who are not trying to encourage or force everyone to abide by the same biblical rules and law, or their interpretation of biblical rules and laws.

    It’s just that you are worshiping a god (Yahweh) who would most likely be convicted of crimes against humanity if he was human and walking the planet today.

    I cannot, in good conscience, worship such a god. No reward (be it dopamine, oxytocin, acknowledgment, or the promise of eternal life) will convince me otherwise.

    Good day.

    Like

  278. “It’s just that you are worshiping a god (Yahweh) who would most likely be convicted of crimes against humanity if he was human and walking the planet today. ”

    Given a jury representative of the world’s theistic make up your claim of conviction is just more nonsense you have not thought through. Most of the word recognizes God’s right to judge and in fact many people pray for it when they see evil By that rational as I have said before God is guilty merely by the fact people die. IF God were human then he would deserve to be convicted because he would not know the future and hearts of men. Seeing how he is God with those capabilities your parallel makes no sense

    IN the end it comes down to an argument about God not allowing us to have the life he gave forever regardless of our actions. we should live forever or he is guilty of genocide.

    Some poor soul tried to beg that people could die with undeliberate action from God but ran away when trying to define how God could be undeliberate.

    This is just a rhetoric anyway. Everyone knows that these were unique situation as there have been no sanctioned killings by the biblical God in over 3,000 years, the “its scary” and “used to justify” modern implication is just clap trap atheists float for emotional rather than emperical appeal

    Like

  279. Howie, thank you for sharing the video. After I left Christianity, I came to have a better understanding of the causes of antisocial behavior. My research also showed me how little Yahweh knew about his own creation. Yahweh would not have promoted the very things that cause neurohomornal imbalances, brain damage, brain atrophy, mental illness, neurological disorders, pons dysfunction, attachment disorders, and so much more.

    Like

  280. I have a background in Psychology” – I’m sure you do, T – most likely as a patient.

    Like

  281. Too many hyper-masculine females are a far greater danger to mankind then men being men.” – enter the other patient —

    Like

  282. That is also the ethic of the US soldier at arms who is trained to annihilate the enemy but also to sacrifice his life for his brother at arms and those men, women and children he seeks to defend from evil.
    Over the past 60 years, most US soldiers haven’t been sent to fight ANYone evil, they’ve been sent to make the American rich, richer.

    Like

  283. ““I have a background in Psychology” – I’m sure you do, T – most likely as a patient.”

    Arch you would feel pretty at home in the ward. Many patients also think their doctors are patients 🙂

    Like

  284. Arch,

    President GW hunted your mass murdering, rapist buddy Saddam Hussein down like the dirty rat he was and brought him justice:

    He was hanged by the neck until dead.

    And his two maniac sons were slaughtered in the streets like atheist Philistines by US military forces.

    God bless the US Armed Forces and the rapists and maniacs they brought to justice.

    Like

  285. Arch,

    The only hyper-masculine female mental patient around here would be you.

    Confusing me with you is but one of your many mental-emotional pathologies.

    Maybe your co-atheist royal Queen Neuro can get you hooked up with some neurotransmitter uptake meds.

    Like

  286. And how many American lives did it cost, Silliness, to illegally invade a country that had done nothing to us, on the pretext of its having weapons of mass destruction, so that American companies could secure the oil fields? How many American young men and women was the life of Saddam worth?

    Like

  287. Arch,

    Countries are inanimate objects, concepts if you will. So countries can’t do anything to anybody, obviously.

    But maniac tyrants like Saddam Hussein have committed atrocities from time immemorial.

    Did you know that your buddy mass murder Saddam Hussein was paying Palestinian parents $25,000 a pop to turn their children into suicide bombers?

    Of course not.

    And that is the crying shame about atheism.

    You’re all the monkeys that hear no evil, see no evil, speak evil at every opportunity.

    Like

  288. Did you know that your buddy mass murder Saddam Hussein was paying Palestinian parents $25,000 a pop to turn their children into suicide bombers?” Uh, gonna need some proof there, SillyOne —

    Like

  289. I’m not going to waste my time on a wild goose chase for figments of your warped imagination.

    Like

  290. “So, T – you’re saying you got nuthin’, right? Thought so –”

    Last I heard in the other thread you were pushing Lawrence Krauss’ theory of everything coming out of nothing so if I have nothing……

    Doesn’t it mean I have everything??????

    ROFL.

    Like

  291. “I’m not going to waste my time on a wild goose chase for figments of your warped imagination.”

    You tell him Arch. You got the church of the nothing turned to everything to get ready for tomorrow morning. You got to strip down to your skivvies and wait for a quantum fluctuation to put some pants on you.

    Like

  292. @SOM

    Repeating yourself doesn’t change the facts. The Passover celebrates the malicious killing of all the first-born Egyptian males because the Middle Eastern tribal god of the Israelites named Yahweh wanted to stroke his ego.

    And the only place that gods exist is as figments of the human imagination.

    Like

  293. Ron,

    The Passover is NOT a celebration of killing of any kind. That particular idea is just you redefining the facts so they suit atheist faith and dogma.

    Both the Jews and the Christians teach that the Passover is the celebration of Hebrew liberation from slavery to Pharaoh.

    Atheists don’t get to redefine religions to suit their own faith and dogma. Religions are religions because they define themselves.

    Like

  294. Arch,

    What you and every other atheist do is set yourselves up as the authorities on what is just and unjust.

    And you do that based on what you know or don’t know.

    Therefore, the Iraq wars were unjust because you are completely unaware of all the crimes against humanity that Saddam Hussein and his sons committed on a near daily basis.

    This is why atheism is a head in the sand philosophy. Whatever facts don’t conform to your atheist faith and dogma or are outside your personal knowledge, you simply deny.

    Consequently, atheism is everything you think is wrong with the religions you complain about.

    Like

  295. @SOM’s

    Right. By that thinking, the Spanish Inquisition was just the celebration of spreading Christ’s love. The anti-Semitic pogroms were just a celebration of European liberation from those perfidious Jews.

    Seems like denial ain’t just a river in Egypt.

    Like

  296. You must take a Silliness pill every morning, just to keep up your supply – where do you think the word, “Passover” comes from? What “passed over” what? The “Angel of Death” (otherwise a really nice guy, you’d like him –) “PASSED OVER” the Hebrews’ houses, because their doorframes were drenched in – what was it again? crayon? magic marker? – oh, I remember, blood! Is that the best your god could come up with, blood?

    All of the houses not painted with blood had their firstborn children murdered – SUREly you heard about this, it was in all the papers!

    You’d think that an omniscient god would know which houses the Hebrews lived in, without the need for all that killing, but noooo, your god needs blood, buckets of it!

    And why the need to kill all of those innocent Egyptian children? Because Pharaoh refused to let the Hebrews go? But didn’t your god magically “harden his heart,” thus removing all of his free will, so that he COULDN’T let the Hebrews go? And for what? So he could show the Egyptians how powerful he was!

    If it were true, which it isn’t, we would have to believe that your god set Pharaoh up to fail, and murdered countless innocent children, to show people how great he was! That would only show me how horrible he was!

    Gosh, you’d think, after such a magic show, that all of the Egyptians would begin worshiping this obscure desert god, YHWH, who couldn’t even afford to buy a vowel, but no – they didn’t.

    You really don’t see how totally idiotic this all is, do you? Stay in school, don’t do drugs.

    Like

  297. Ron,

    The Spanish Inquisition was what it was.

    The Catholic Church is very up front about it.

    But there is no comparison between the Spanish Inquisition and the Passover.

    Which version of your atheist Bible has the Jews celebrating the Spanish Inquisition?

    Like

  298. Therefore, the Iraq wars were unjust because you are completely unaware of all the crimes against humanity that Saddam Hussein and his sons committed on a near daily basis.</em" – and that was our problem, how?

    Surely you don't think that it's the job of the US to go around the world, killing evil dictators? And who decides which ones to kill? What's to stop them from coming over here and killing ours?

    You're so Silly.

    Like

  299. @SOM

    You’re right. there is no comparison. The Jewish enslavement and liberation is a fable, while the Spanish Inquisition is a historical fact. And flowery language won’t paper over the atrocities committed in the name of an imaginary god—it simply reveals the lengths that some people are prepared to go to in order to justify them.

    Like

  300. @Arch

    Funny thing is that Saddam was installed by the Reagan administration way back when. There are even photos/videos of Rumsfeld shaking their boy’s hand several months after the massacre in Du’jail for which he was eventually hanged.

    Like

  301. Lets call a spade a spade. Nate and company think that any killing is barbaric (except in Nate’s case where he admits that if its one of his loved ones doing it it they might have good reason). We don’t agree provided we have knowledge of the crime. To illustrate the point – this isn’t nice footage but the “killers” were not barbaric in doing what they did

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  302. But people like SOM get their information from the likes of Rush Limbaugh and his right-wing ilk, where such things are never mentioned.

    The sad thing about America, is that the rich have learned how to vote-mine the ignorant. Kerry was way ahead of W in the polls, and picking up speed – then Rove had the “Swift Boat” story released, and despite the fact that it wasn’t true, it created enough doubt among the ignorant, that Kerry, and America, lost. Now he’s trying a “Tom Eagleton” on Hillary, well in advance..

    Like

  303. Ark,

    I am unaware that you have made any points.

    All you’ve done is hallucinate the usual atheist alternate reality and then demand that people in real reality respond to your hallucination.

    I don’t say that to be disrespectful, it’s just the way atheism works.

    I understand, how you interpret my responses, but you have still not clarified the point I raised, one way or another.
    So, let me try again and if you are not actually trying to be obtuse on purpose then perhaps you will at least offer a straightforward answer, please.

    To refresh.

    The primary foundation of a relationship with Yahweh generally begins with instruction from ones parents or adult guardian’.
    Would you say this is correct?

    Like

  304. Arch,

    The world has been without a nuclear holocaust or third world war precisely because the United States, planet Earth’s only hyper-power, stepped up and saved the world from the likes of Saddam Hussein.

    President Bush the Elder went to war against Hussein when he pulled an Adolf and annexed Kuwait, one of the worlds greatest oil producers.

    Like Rome before her, the United States rightly held that stability was absolutely essential to peace.

    Therefore, crushing destabilizing tyrants like Saddam Hussein is right and just.

    Like

  305. Ron,

    That the Passover is a tradition passed down over the millennia is proof that it is not a fable.

    I realize that you are an atheist and that means you believe everything just happened all by itself but both the existence of Israel and the Passover prove the veracity of the Old Testament.

    Like

  306. T,

    Nate told me in a previous comment that the atheist mass murders of the 20th century were okay because some of the people slaughtered weren’t really innocent anyway.

    I kid you not.

    These people (atheists) are absolutely amazing.

    [*** NOTE — This claim is utterly false as can be seen in the conversation beginning here and running through this comment. — Nate]

    Like

  307. “Nate told me in a previous comment that the atheist mass murders of the 20th century were okay because some of the people slaughtered weren’t really innocent anyway.”

    I don’t disbelieve you SOM. That sound’s like Nate’s pretzel thinking. One standard and rationale when it suits him and a completely different one when it doesn’t

    Like

  308. Arch,

    If you actually listened to or read to news sources like Rush Limbaugh yourself, you would know that that commentators like Rush spend nearly their entire time on the air quoting from atheist favorites like the New York Times, the Huffington Puffington Post, CNN, MSLSD and others.

    Instead you insist on being told what to think. And anything outside what you’ve been told what to think simply doesn’t exist.

    Again, you’ve expressed the atheist head in the sand philosophy perfectly.

    You may be a blithering ignoramus but at least your atheist brainwashing has made your blithering ignorance remarkable in its factory-like consistency.

    Like

  309. T,

    Me thinks you are being severely unkind to the pretzel.

    Atheists are rot gut liars in the realm of politics and philosophy.

    It’s as simple as that.

    And that is precisely why atheism belongs nowhere near mankind and can only spawn the most brutal, murderous and unjust regimes.

    Like

  310. You know, Silliness, if you would study more World History, Government and Civics classes, and less theology, you might learn how the REAL world works. The US, and others, liberated Kuwait because Kuwait has been a member of the UN since 1967, and asked for our help – we honored a tgreaty. Moi, of Kenya, Amin, of Uganda – there are a hundred or more “evil dictators” around the world – is it REALLY our job to risk American lives to eliminate all of these, and the others that will pop up to take their place. I know it’s not your strong suit, but get real!

    Like

  311. Arch,

    President Bush the Younger spent 14 months convincing the world that attacking Saddam Hussein was a just cause.

    His efforts made him so popular that the Democrat Party insisted on a second bipartisan vote just so they, the Democrats could be as popular as George Bush the Younger.

    I’ll bet that little detail was also somehow omitted from your brainwashing protocol.

    Both Gulf Wars were just and legitimate and bipartisan-approved.

    Like

  312. President Bush the Younger spent 14 months convincing the world that attacking Saddam Hussein was a just cause.

    Bush the Younger lied, and over 5,000 young American men and women died, and thousands more lost limbs. It was about control of the oil fields, about money, and that’s never a “just cause.”

    Like

  313. Arch,

    You’ll have to ask the tyrant Barack Obama about Africa.

    I think he’s got a few squads of special forces out in the jungles looking for the girls who were kidnapped by one of the today’s favorite African Bozos.

    In fact, the tyrant Barack Obama has US forces all over Africa these days.

    Was that little nugget also not part of your brainwashing protocol?

    Like

  314. Arch,

    Right. Bush lied. People died.

    That’s a rather well known part of your brainwash protocol.

    You guys say it every time you can’t face the truth about something even though Bush is long gone.

    Bush also lied about ObamaCare didn’t he? Wasn’t he the President who said, “If you like your insurance policy you can keep it.”

    And wasn’t it President Bush who lied to the whole world about the Benghazi massacre being caused by a video?

    And wasn’t it President Bush who lied about sending the IRS out to silence his political opposition?

    I can see why President Bush is so unpopular with you.

    Like

  315. And that is precisely why atheism belongs nowhere near mankind and can only spawn the most brutal, murderous and unjust regimes.—SOM

    You mean like the Holy Roman Empire? Or the European colonial expansion that culminated with Manifest Destiny?

    Apparently you missed my previous comments (here and here) showing that the Holocaust followed centuries of religious propaganda that conditioned the population to take action against the Jews. Hitler and Luther both claimed they were doing God’s work. And the Good Friday liturgy containing the phrase “Let us pray for the perfidious Jews” (Oremus pro perfidis Judaeis) wasn’t changed until 1960—a full 15 years after the Second World War.

    The last major genocide occurred in Rwanda only two decades ago—an ethnic cleansing perpetrated by Christians against fellow Christians. If pleading “we’re no worse than the rest” is Christianity’s best defense to atheism, that doesn’t say much for its moral superiority, does it?

    And I challenge you to name one dictator who committed genocide or war under the banner of atheism.

    Like

  316. You’ll have to ask the tyrant Barack Obama about Africa.” – yet a further demonstration that yoour ignorance knows no bounds – the two African dictators I mentioned were LONG before Obama’s time. You seem to be the poster child for, “A Mind is A Terrible Thing To Waste”.

    Like

  317. Let’s chat about your buddy, “W,” whose I.Q. I strongly suspect, closely mirrors your own:

    W:
     
    • After 8 years, couldn’t find Osama Bin Laden?
     
    • Lied about Iraq ’s WMD’s and ties to Al-Qaida, committing America’s resources to pursue his personal vendetta?
     
    • Tried having Mohamed elBaradei (head/UN International Atomic Energy Agency) fired, for repeatedly warning that Saddam had no WMD’s?
     
    • Authorized the Patriot Act, converting the FBI into the KGB?
     
    • Exceded Osama’s score of 3300, for the number of American deaths for which he’s responsible?
     
    • Appointed a crony’s roommate to head FEMA, who fretted tardiness for dinner while raging water swirled about Americans cowering on New Orleans’ rooftops (“You’re doin’ a HECKuva job, Brownie!”)?
     
    • Cut 80% of the Army Corps of Engineers’ request for levee improvement at New Orleans Lake Pont Chartrain, to fund his war in Iraq ?
     
    • Signed a tax cut package primarily benefiting the rich?
     
    • Proposed an offsetting budget cut, reducing appropriations for Medicare, Medicade, educational programs, food stamps and student loans?
     
    • Threatened vetoing the McCain Amendment outlawing torture and human debasement, while maintaining: “We do not torture”?
     
    • Authorized offshore “Black Sites” to hold anonymous prisoners indefinitely, without recourse (or witnesses)?
     
    • Allowed oil company cronies to gouge Americans for record gains (ExxonMobile 3rd quarter: $100 billion!), while having the power to regulate the market by releasing Federal reserves?
     
    • Was certainly aware of Dick “Halliburton” Cheney’s secret meeting with these same cronies?
     
    • Advocated opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to those cronies, allowing them to rape virgin wilderness in pursuit of oil profits?
     
    • Let a former attorney for Chevron-Texaco head an FTC investigation into oil company price gouging?
     
    • Chose a timber industry lobbyist to head the Forest Service?
     
    • Put a mining industry lobbyist (who considers public lands unconstitutional) in charge of Public Lands?
     
    • Installed a utility lobbyist, who represented the worst air polluters in America , head of the Clean Air division of the EPA?
     
    • Made a Monsanto lobbyist Number 2 at the EPA?
     
    • Made head of Superfund, a woman who taught corporate polluters how to evade Superfund regulations?
     
    • Made Edwin Foulke (partner in a union-busting law firm), head of worker health and safety with the Department of Labor?
     
    • Signed a Republican bill severely limiting bankruptcy protection (pushed by banking/credit card/retailing industries)?
     
    • Installed a Rove crony, Kenneth Tomlinson (who was under investigation for misuse of Federal funds), as Chairman/Corporation for Public Broadcasting, to nudge PBS toward the Conservative Right (Elmo’s NEKKID!)?
     
    • Appointed John “Mr. Congeniality” Bolton US Ambassador to the UN, behind the backs of vacationing Congress?
     
    • Put Stewart Simonson, general counsel for Amtrak, in charge of bioterrorism and other public health (including avian flu) emergencies, who has no experience – (“heck of a job, Stewie?”) – in public health, bioterrorism, epidemiology, or even management?
     
    • Appointed nine campaign contributors, including three longtime fundraisers, to the Foreign Intelligence Board, whose job it is to “advise the President on the quality and effectiveness of US Intelligence efforts,” including a top fundraiser/former business partner, and two Texas oil men?
            
    • Set lawsuit caps (benefiting those who funded his campaigns), limiting liabilities of insurance companies, doctors, pharmaceutical companies, tobacco companies, etc.?
            
    • Sought to privatize Social Security, guaranteeing billions to brokers in commissions and rollover fees?
            
    • Authorized pressure be put on the Food and Drug Administration to stall over-the-counter sale of the “Plan B” contraceptive, despite scientific findings that it’s safe for such dispensation?
            
    • Appeared determined to insert religion into public schools to brainwash American youth?
            
    • Retained Karl Rove as his dark Merlin, approving the Rovian smearing, through lies and innuendo, of his opponents: Ann Richards, John McCain, Al Gore, John Kerry, and John Wilson?
            
    • Refused to allow UN Human Rights experts to privately interview Guantanamo detainees (allows only the Red Cross, which keeps its findings confidential, reporting them only to the detaining power, vs the UN, which makes reports public)?
            
    • Pulled a disappearing act for twelve hours after the WTC was struck?
            
    • Continued to vacation at Crawford for two days, as Katrina bore down on Louisiana ?
            
    • Wouldn’t acknowledge global warming?
           
    • Wouldn’t acknowledge evolution as a reality?
            
    • Met with Omar Bongo, President of Gabon, less than ten months after lobbyist Jack Abramhoff (currently under investigation) offered – for nine million dollars – to arrange such a meeting?

    • According to a recent U.N. report, had NO plan in place for governing post-invasion Iraq?

    • Denied foreknowledge of the sale of 21 American ports to an Arab company based in a MidEastern country known to encourage terrorists, yet he staunchly threatens to veto any legislation aimed at quashing the arrangement? 

    • Demonstrated daily for the world that this country had a president who, despite his need to discuss the subject with intelligent, educated world leaders, couldn’t bother to learn to pronounce the word, “nuclear”?

    Like

  318. @SOM

    Lot’s of traditions have been passed down over the millenia: astrology, acupuncture, tarot card reading, karmic healing, voodoo, etc. Does that make them real, tool?

    And the belief that God magically poofed evertyhing into existence out of nothing by making a wish is your belief, not mine.

    Like

  319. Ron,

    The atheist mass murders slaughtered 100,000,000 in the span of just two decades.

    No one in human history or in your atheist brainwash protocol can hold a candle to the atheists concerning mass murder, mayhem and societal collapse.

    Like

  320. Arch,

    As usual, anything outside your atheist brainwash protocol is completely incomprehensible to you.

    That’s why you always, and mean always, miss the point.

    Like

  321. Ron,

    Astrology is not a special holiday commemorating a specific event. Neither is acupuncture, tarot card reading, karmic healing or voodoo.

    You are employing the logical fallacy of equating apples and oranges.

    How many times is it that I’ve called you on this very same logical fallacy?

    It makes me think it’s part of the atheist brainwashing protocol because all atheists use it compulsively and can’t comprehend the simplest explanation of it when it is given to you.

    Like

  322. SOM,

    Like I said, name one genocide committed under the banner of atheism. All you’ve proved is that bad people do bad things when they unwaveringly committed themselves to following bad ideologies—be they religious or political.

    Like

  323. Arch,

    Your ability to cut and past leftist talking points is almost as amazing as your ability to change the subject and be blind to the obvious.

    But Bush the Younger is not my friend.

    As a matter of fact he is quite loathsome to people of my political persuasion.

    Now Dick Cheney…

    There’s a man worthy of respect!

    Like

  324. “Bush the Younger lied, and over 5,000 young American men and women died, and thousands more lost limbs.”

    @Arch,

    Not to mention nearly a half million American soldiers with PTSD and approximately 62% with traumatic brain injuries. And you’re right — it was about power and control over resources — behavior no different than the bloody war god, Yahweh, who was made in the image of hyper-masculine, power-hungry, dopamine addicted men.

    Like

  325. Ron,

    Atheism has no banner just as modernism or postmodernism has no banner.

    I can’t name one group of people in human history who went to war over Aristotelian philosophy, either.

    So again, even though I just pointed out the logical fallacy of equating apples and oranges, to paraphrase former pop star Britney, “Ooops! You did it again!”

    The completeness of your atheist brainwashing has reduced your ability to converse to simple, knee jerk compulsion.

    You just keep using the same logical fallacy over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over…

    …and over.

    Like

  326. Now Dick Cheney…There’s a man worthy of respect.
    You really ARE dumber than a dust-bunny! Who do you think had his hand up W’s ass for 8 years? Bush was his puppet! Head of Halliburton, and you say iraq was about a tyrant, not oil! Was Saddam more of a tyrant when W was Pres, than he was when Senior ran him out of Kuwait? So why didn’t Senior take him out? Because public opinion would have opposed any further action after Kuwait had been freed – BUT, if Junior could use lies to whip the world into a frenzy of fear and paranoia, believing that Saddam had WMD’s, THEN it was open season and Get Out of Jail Free!

    Try watching something other than Faux News sometime – no wonder they call you Silliness of Mind! Sheeesh!

    Like

  327. SOM,

    Right. So you fully acknowledge that no one used their their ‘lack of god’ beliefs as a pretext to justifying war or genocide, whereas the same cannot be said of those who did same on account of their god beliefs.

    Thanks for your candor. We’re making progress.

    Like

  328. Ron,

    Because your claims are all based on the same logical fallacy they are false.

    Since your claims are false, any conclusions you make are also false.

    That means you have lost the argument.

    You don’t get to ask anymore questions of me or require that I continue responding to the same proven nonsense.

    What’s wrong with you people?

    You just keep babbling the same nonsense even after it’s been proven over and over and over

    …and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over and over…

    …that it’s complete nonsense.

    Like

  329. Arch,

    Mentioning Dick Cheney to the low information, brainwashed herd is like showing the Cross to vampires.

    You responded right on cue just as your brainwash protocol demands you do.

    In low information English that means I just yanked your chain and you went off like a plugged up toilet.

    Like

  330. I was really surprised, Silliness, that you and W aren’t best Buds – the two of you seem to think SO much alike:

    “I trust God speaks through me.”
    — George W. Bush —

    Like

  331. Arch,

    I have never claimed that God speaks through me.

    But I am rather heartened that you are no long trying to compare me to you.

    I consider being compared to W rather than you, a step up.

    Not a big one but at least now I’m knee high to a grasshopper.

    Tank you berry much.

    Like

  332. But I am rather heartened that you are no long trying to compare me to you.” – surely you jest – you could improve for a lifetime, and never rise to my level. You’re like a platypus aspiring to be a swan, just because you both swim!

    Like

  333. The platypus, like the archaeopteryx is long extinct.” – see what I mean about “dumb as a dust-bunny” – the playtpus is very MUcH alive and living in Australia. Don’t get out much, do you Silliness?

    Like

  334. Arch,

    I’ll bet you went on a big ass Google bug hunt to find out all about the Australian platypus.

    “What a maroon!”*

    *a term barrowed from Bugs Bunny

    Like

  335. “What a maroon!”*

    *a term barrowed from Bugs Bunny

    At least we now know where you get that vast storehouse of knowledge you lay claim to – cartoons! I’ve known about the platypus since I was a kid! You can’t even manage to spell “borrow” right – some mental midget —

    Like

  336. SOM,

    I think you left out a few “and overs” in your last response. I only count 47 and there should be a minimum of at least 50.

    And what can I say? I’m a tough genus to convince: cute and cuddly one moment, tearing people limb from limb the next (like that kid-friendly Hebrew fable story about Elisha the bald head found in 2 Kings 2:23-25).

    We’ll talk some more later. You’ve already made three huge concessions in this one conversation alone and that’s a pretty good start. It took me almost two years to disabuse the last apologist of his finely-honed prejudices against non-believers. He eventually stopped blogging about it altogether.

    Like

  337. Silliness, don’t you have cartoons to watch? How else do you expect to further your education?

    Like

  338. SOM,

    Apology accepted. You caught me during my cute and cuddly mood. But don’t test me. 😉

    Like

  339. Thanks, Howie! Yeah, life has gotten in the way of blogging of late. The loss of my sister hit me so hard I’m still staggering.

    Hope all is well with you!
    God bless, and thanks for welcoming me back. 🙂
    C

    Like

  340. Aw, Cheez! I just stumbled in on an estrogen-filled hug-fest – I just gonna slide on out da back dooah heah – later alla y’all —

    Like

  341. Estrogen? What —boys like you find hugging to express sympathy, compassion and respect unmanly? And we wonder why this world is so effed up. 😉

    Carry on with trivial dialog with SOM. I’ll gladly side on out da back dooah heah — later alla y’all —

    Like

  342. Portal, sorry, I missed your comment before. Thanks so much!

    Wow! This whole thread has completely worn me OUT! I must say that I’m scared utterly of both camps! lol So much hatred spewing from both sides. It actually makes me very sad to see how little we’ve learned over the millenia as a race of human beings.

    But I will hold to what I believe – that it is NOT what you believe, how well you can reason/think, or how profound your arguments are formulated, but rather how you actually live that makes the difference. Hopefully all of you spewing hatred virtually are not doing so in reality (one can hope).

    P.S. I did want to address one comment from somewhere above: T stated that the way is narrow and not all will bow the knee. Paul begs to differ:

    For it is written, “AS I LIVE, SAYS THE LORD, EVERY KNEE SHALL BOW TO ME, AND EVERY TONGUE SHALL GIVE PRAISE TO GOD.” Romans 14:11

    … so that at the name of Jesus EVERY KNEE WILL BOW, of those who are in heaven and on earth and under the earth, Philippians 2:10

    And now, in contradiction of what I just did above, if you want to read something really profound, check this blog post out: http://jsparkblog.com/2014/07/08/the-error-of-narrow-gate-theology-jesus-is-bigger-than-a-single-bible-verse/

    Reducing our whole theology to single verses has done more damage than we will ever realize, methinks. And to think it could all have been avoided had we resisted the urge to divide the Scriptures into chapter and verse to begin with! I challenge anyone here to print a book of the Bible out without chapter and verse delineations and read it in its entirety. I’ve done this with a few N.T. books and was amazed at how the meanings seemed to change from what I had been taught by religious leaders who claimed advances in scholarship.

    All that is my 2 cents, and worth about as much. 🙂
    C

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