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  1. #1
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    Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    I don't think this topic has come up yet but has bothered me for a while. This is my second post so excuse the format. I'm not a noob at debate sites but every site has their foibles.

    Preamble: This isn't a discussion about whether God exists or not, or really which God, since all religions require some kind of obsequiousness. In case there are religions that don't then they aren't part of this discussion.

    Goal: To understand why religious people, of all faiths AFAIK, need to fawn and praise and generally act a rather undignified when it comes to their God (or Gods). And why does God really need it anyway?

    So I don't understand why a God, the creator of the universe really requires:

    1. Human sacrifices. Even in the modern world, Islam supports martyrdom and even Christians understand it too.

    2. Praying. What is the point of asking for things, thanking God for other things or wishing well on others and so on? Like Rick Perry's pray for rain thing or his pray the school mass shooters away thing? Do people really expect that to work? And if so, when those people who prayed so hard, lost the election, why do they continue to do it? To me, it seems like begging and if I were God, I would be really annoyed and ignore it all.

    3. Why does God need confirmation of belief all the time? How is this supposed to be a virtue? To live your life in constant praise seems to be a bit of a waste of life?

    4. Why aren't religious people embarrassed when they do the things they do? Speaking in tongue, rolling around, acting crazy, falling over and all that? I watch Benny Hiinn every now and then and I'd be totally ashamed to do some of the things I see there.

    5. Religious people are like Apple fanbois. Really annoying thinking that they're the greatest thing ever and that everyone should live their lives as they do. But why does God require this kind of thinking? Why not leave everyone alone to believe what they want? I like the Hindu religion (I just saw Life of Pi) and it seems that the lead character thinks that Jesus and Allah and Jehovah are just different Gods that are part of the overall pantheon. I love this idea because he was so accepting of the other religions that he became a Catholic Muslim Hindu. So why are Christians, Jews and Muslims so insular on the one hand but wanting to dominate on the other.

    6. Isn't it a bit primitive to make offerings and what not to God? It best it feels like sucking up to the boss a bit and not a little degrading IMHO. And what does God need for offerings anyway?

    That's it. I may have more questions later.

  2. #2
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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    If a god exists that is omniscient, omnipotent, and wholly benevolent, then you should do whatever that god asks or suggests that you do. To do otherwise is irrational.

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JimJones8934 View Post
    I don't think this topic has come up yet but has bothered me for a while. This is my second post so excuse the format. I'm not a noob at debate sites but every site has their foibles.

    Preamble: This isn't a discussion about whether God exists or not, or really which God, since all religions require some kind of obsequiousness. In case there are religions that don't then they aren't part of this discussion.

    Goal: To understand why religious people, of all faiths AFAIK, need to fawn and praise and generally act a rather undignified when it comes to their God (or Gods). And why does God really need it anyway?

    So I don't understand why a God, the creator of the universe really requires:

    1. Human sacrifices. Even in the modern world, Islam supports martyrdom and even Christians understand it too.

    2. Praying. What is the point of asking for things, thanking God for other things or wishing well on others and so on? Like Rick Perry's pray for rain thing or his pray the school mass shooters away thing? Do people really expect that to work? And if so, when those people who prayed so hard, lost the election, why do they continue to do it? To me, it seems like begging and if I were God, I would be really annoyed and ignore it all.

    3. Why does God need confirmation of belief all the time? How is this supposed to be a virtue? To live your life in constant praise seems to be a bit of a waste of life?

    4. Why aren't religious people embarrassed when they do the things they do? Speaking in tongue, rolling around, acting crazy, falling over and all that? I watch Benny Hiinn every now and then and I'd be totally ashamed to do some of the things I see there.

    5. Religious people are like Apple fanbois. Really annoying thinking that they're the greatest thing ever and that everyone should live their lives as they do. But why does God require this kind of thinking? Why not leave everyone alone to believe what they want? I like the Hindu religion (I just saw Life of Pi) and it seems that the lead character thinks that Jesus and Allah and Jehovah are just different Gods that are part of the overall pantheon. I love this idea because he was so accepting of the other religions that he became a Catholic Muslim Hindu. So why are Christians, Jews and Muslims so insular on the one hand but wanting to dominate on the other.

    6. Isn't it a bit primitive to make offerings and what not to God? It best it feels like sucking up to the boss a bit and not a little degrading IMHO. And what does God need for offerings anyway?

    That's it. I may have more questions later.
    1. The premise behind this is that we owe a debt that needs repaying.

    2. We do it not because it is an exercise in order to get something, confirm something, or beg for anything. We appeal to God who has said that He hears us, and we are confident that what He does is good. That's all there is to it. We voice our concerns and He is happy to hear them. Paul says that Christians ought to live in a spirit of prayer, which means we ought to always direct our concerns towards God and live in constant communion with Him. It's more about the state of being with God than it is about a set of expectations.

    3. God doesn't need confirmation of anything. Who are we to confirm for Him something that He has always confidently known? But what it is, is confirmation for us. We extol His virtues and confirm our belief in Him good and often, because it's good for us and He says that the outpour of our hearts is like a pleasant fragrance to Him. And what's the waste? How is any praise wasted when it is of an object that worthy? What are we supposed to do instead? Bite the hand that feeds us? Am I not supposed to say thank you when someone treats me wonderfully? And how much more thanks does He deserve.

    4. They aren't embarrassed because of the substance behind those kinds of actions. They aren't embarrassed because we aren't base creatures that need always worry ourselves with appearances. How would you feel if you were enraptured by the presence of God, and felt that He was gifting you with His own brand of speech? Now I don't interpret the gift of tongues that way, and you don't appear to believe that either, but we can still appreciate what that means to them, and it isn't anything to be ashamed of. They take the wonderful things stored up in them, and publicly pour them out. Why should someone who has a mind towards healing, knowledge, love, and mercy be ashamed of expressing that? I don't see what they should express instead.

    5. That is because of what's at stake when it comes to the issue of religion. We share our beliefs and hope that others come to have a relationship with Christ, because if we happen to be right then that would be a whole lot better for them, wouldn't it? Should we hope that they die and don't come into the presence of God and bask in the glory of heaven forever? No, we hope the best for them, and we try to be a factor in making sure that the best happens for them.

    6. God doesn't need offerings. He finds them pleasant. The whole point of an offering, no matter the time period (which may dictate the type and amount), is to set aside something of ours with which to do him reverence. It symbolizes something that happens on the inside. Take a look at the book of Malachi and you can see that God finds offerings detestable when they are given hypocritically. Offerings are an aid for us, not Him. We take something tangible and set it aside, in order to affirm concretely something that can feel less tangible at times.
    There is no wealth like knowledge, no poverty like ignorance.
    Nahj ul-Balāgha by Ali bin Abu-Talib

  5. #4
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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    1. Human sacrifices. Even in the modern world, Islam supports martyrdom and even Christians understand it too.
    Because we are sinners, the death we die, we die to sin. Romans 6:1-14

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    2. Praying. What is the point of asking for things, thanking God for other things or wishing well on others and so on? Like Rick Perry's pray for rain thing or his pray the school mass shooters away thing? Do people really expect that to work? And if so, when those people who prayed so hard, lost the election, why do they continue to do it? To me, it seems like begging and if I were God, I would be really annoyed and ignore it all.
    First, I'm glad you are not god.
    Second, we pray because He has told us that it matters.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    3. Why does God need confirmation of belief all the time? How is this supposed to be a virtue? To live your life in constant praise seems to be a bit of a waste of life?
    Not really. First of all because God is worthy of praise. If He is worthy, then it is by definition not a waste.
    It is virtuous to obey God, and to give Him glory. Because it is to lift up the virtuous and hold holiness in high regard.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    4. Why aren't religious people embarrassed when they do the things they do? Speaking in tongue, rolling around, acting crazy, falling over and all that? I watch Benny Hiinn every now and then and I'd be totally ashamed to do some of the things I see there.
    Those that are fake should be ashamed.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    5. Religious people are like Apple fanbois. Really annoying thinking that they're the greatest thing ever and that everyone should live their lives as they do. But why does God require this kind of thinking? Why not leave everyone alone to believe what they want? I like the Hindu religion (I just saw Life of Pi) and it seems that the lead character thinks that Jesus and Allah and Jehovah are just different Gods that are part of the overall pantheon. I love this idea because he was so accepting of the other religions that he became a Catholic Muslim Hindu. So why are Christians, Jews and Muslims so insular on the one hand but wanting to dominate on the other.
    I can't speak for other religions, but what Jesus has to offer is "The good news" for a reason. It isn't domination that is sought at all, those that do are not Christians.
    Christians are servants to others, not their masters.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    6. Isn't it a bit primitive to make offerings and what not to God? It best it feels like sucking up to the boss a bit and not a little degrading IMHO. And what does God need for offerings anyway?
    Jesus said he desires mercy, and not sacrifice. Mat 12:7
    What Christianity really is, is visiting widows and orphans in their time of need. James 1:27


    It isn't that God "needs" any of that stuff. We are the ones that need it. We need to venerate God, we need to become as He is (holy) 1 peter 1:16.
    To serve man.

  6. #5
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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by Rodriguez View Post
    If a god exists that is omniscient, omnipotent, and wholly benevolent, then you should do whatever that god asks or suggests that you do. To do otherwise is irrational.
    Not at all. If god exists then he should allow us to be responsible for our own actions. So long as he fully enumerates those actions that is. If I were God, I'd have a long list of:

    If you do X then Y will happen because Z.

    And then we can accept that rule. Indeed to follow God blindly is irrational to me.

    ---------- Post added at 11:25 PM ---------- Previous post was at 11:01 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Lukecash12 View Post
    1. The premise behind this is that we owe a debt that needs repaying.
    OK, I can understand the debt angle but doesn't that in turn make us indentured slaves?


    2. We do it not because it is an exercise in order to get something, confirm something, or beg for anything. We appeal to God who has said that He hears us, and we are confident that what He does is good. That's all there is to it. We voice our concerns and He is happy to hear them. Paul says that Christians ought to live in a spirit of prayer, which means we ought to always direct our concerns towards God and live in constant communion with Him. It's more about the state of being with God than it is about a set of expectations.

    I would believe that if some of the prayers weren't so self serving. I'm talking about the big prayer events such as Rick Perry's pray for rain (which didn't work anyway). To me those are ultimately prayers for more stuff. Even the prayers after a disaster makes no sense because why would there be a pre-emptive prayer to not have any of those things happen anyway? I understand the point that God won't do anything in response to prayer but it seems to me, from the person doing the praying, that God doesn't need to listen because he already knows our brain patterns and emotional responses towards real world events. So it seems that prayer is more about us, the 'constant communion' that you describe, in which case, again - what is the point if we know our prayer changes nothing and God already knows what is in our heads?

    3. God doesn't need confirmation of anything. Who are we to confirm for Him something that He has always confidently known? But what it is, is confirmation for us. We extol His virtues and confirm our belief in Him good and often, because it's good for us and He says that the outpour of our hearts is like a pleasant fragrance to Him. And what's the waste? How is any praise wasted when it is of an object that worthy? What are we supposed to do instead? Bite the hand that feeds us? Am I not supposed to say thank you when someone treats me wonderfully? And how much more thanks does He deserve.

    Well, a polite response to a thank you is "you're welcome". Which I don't believe God usually says. Instead it is much like talking to a brick wall. At what point does the lack of acknowledgement of thanks become just rude? It does seem one directional.

    4. They aren't embarrassed because of the substance behind those kinds of actions. They aren't embarrassed because we aren't base creatures that need always worry ourselves with appearances. How would you feel if you were enraptured by the presence of God, and felt that He was gifting you with His own brand of speech? Now I don't interpret the gift of tongues that way, and you don't appear to believe that either, but we can still appreciate what that means to them, and it isn't anything to be ashamed of. They take the wonderful things stored up in them, and publicly pour them out. Why should someone who has a mind towards healing, knowledge, love, and mercy be ashamed of expressing that? I don't see what they should express instead.

    Well, I would say that it is because we are not base creatures that we do worry about appearances: once we took a bite of that apple, we became self-conscious. However, I don't think people should suppress what they feel they need to do, I suppose. But at the same time, it is like watching primitive tribes in Africa. Surely, we of a modern era can be just a little more dignified?


    5. That is because of what's at stake when it comes to the issue of religion. We share our beliefs and hope that others come to have a relationship with Christ, because if we happen to be right then that would be a whole lot better for them, wouldn't it? Should we hope that they die and don't come into the presence of God and bask in the glory of heaven forever? No, we hope the best for them, and we try to be a factor in making sure that the best happens for them.

    I understand the need to share the good news. But I use Macs but I don't feel the need to make everyone else have one. Everyone has a choice and so saying that Macs are the only way and PCs are miserable ways to do computing is just wrong to me. Actually, further, I use Macs and PCs so I know more than most people that Macs are less hassle than PCs. But I wouldn't begrudge a PC user at all and I too hope that they get their work done without jumping through too many hoops or crashing.

    So we're on the same page. But then I won't keep trying to convince them after one conversation or try to win them over by constant references and nagging. This isn't the same some religions, *cough* Jehovah's Witness *cough* who make it a mission to convert people.


    6. God doesn't need offerings. He finds them pleasant. The whole point of an offering, no matter the time period (which may dictate the type and amount), is to set aside something of ours with which to do him reverence. It symbolizes something that happens on the inside. Take a look at the book of Malachi and you can see that God finds offerings detestable when they are given hypocritically. Offerings are an aid for us, not Him. We take something tangible and set it aside, in order to affirm concretely something that can feel less tangible at times.

    I understand this but these seem to be very human responses. Yes, my millionaire boss doesn't need another tie or bottle of wine but I still buy it for him every year and he is appreciative because he knows I'm not a suck-up. But for the giver, surely, you are just giving what God gave you in the first place to give back to him? He created the universe so it's a bit weird to have you give him what he created as your offering. For God, it must look a bit weird. It's like if your GF buys you something with money she took out of your wallet. It's awkward.

    ---------- Post added at 11:40 PM ---------- Previous post was at 11:25 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    Because we are sinners, the death we die, we die to sin. Romans 6:1-14
    Well, if you define sin as just being born then it's not really fair is it?


    First, I'm glad you are not god.
    Second, we pray because He has told us that it matters.


    I'm glad I'm not god too :-) Though I bet I could do a better job lol!

    Your answer is a bit incomplete because he doesn't say why it matters. If we don't pray, what happens? How do we recompense? And why do Muslims do it 5 times a day and Christians once?


    Not really. First of all because God is worthy of praise. If He is worthy, then it is by definition not a waste.
    It is virtuous to obey God, and to give Him glory. Because it is to lift up the virtuous and hold holiness in high regard.


    Yes, but God is only worth of praise because he tells us so, right? Ultimately, we obey God only because we are told to do so? And to pray only because he told us to do so? Then what are we? Just robots with an emotional predisposition to feel good to obey our creator?

    I can't speak for other religions, but what Jesus has to offer is "The good news" for a reason. It isn't domination that is sought at all, those that do are not Christians.
    Christians are servants to others, not their masters.

    Hmm, with all due respect: **cough** BS **cough**
    Not that all Christians can be painted with a single brush but you guys (as well as other religious folk) do tend to ram your religion down people's throats whether they wanted it or not! Look at the current fight against gay marriage. It's nothing to do with non-gays but it is only the religious who fight against it. Why is that?



    It isn't that God "needs" any of that stuff. We are the ones that need it. We need to venerate God, we need to become as He is (holy) 1 peter 1:16.
    But we need it because he told us we need it. And it seems he needs it too because it makes him feel good according to lukecash.

  7. #6
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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Your answer is a bit incomplete because he doesn't say why it matters. If we don't pray, what happens?
    James 4:2-3 You have not because you do not ask.
    So when you don't pray, you don't get what you could have asked for. But we don't get what we seek to consume on our own lusts.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    How do we recompense? And why do Muslims do it 5 times a day and Christians once?
    Jesus paid the price once for all. We can not recompense ourselves, only Jesus can. We access it through faith, for by grace through faith are we saved. (Ephesians 2:8)

    We don't do it 5xs a day, because Jesus was the perfect sacrifice, and the Muslims do not have one. Or you could say we do are to do it every moment for the rest of our lives, which is dying to self.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Yes, but God is only worth of praise because he tells us so, right?
    No, God is worthy because he is the "that than which a greater can not be conceived".

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Ultimately, we obey God only because we are told to do so? And to pray only because he told us to do so? Then what are we? Just robots with an emotional predisposition to feel good to obey our creator?
    Not at all. We have free will, and we are to have a "relationship" with God. Prayer is a part of relationship. If you do not want a relationship with the God, then you can have that if you like... Not a very good decision IMO.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Not that all Christians can be painted with a single brush but you guys (as well as other religious folk) do tend to ram your religion down people's throats whether they wanted it or not! Look at the current fight against gay marriage. It's nothing to do with non-gays but it is only the religious who fight against it. Why is that?
    First, there is "ramming your religion down throats"... No one is forced to go to church, no one is forced to adhere to the sacraments, and the gay marriage debate is not about the church forcing religion on anyone. As it has been pointed out, gay marriage is not illegal, it simply isn't recognized and conferred all of the status of real marriage. If you want to see real forcing of religion, then go where you are killed or persecuted by the state in the name of God.

    If you want to call the basic social pressures that any group has on society,"ramming religion", then you are barking up the wrong tree. If simply speaking the word, or proclaiming it is considered 'ramming down throats", then I question your grasp of what that phrase really means.

    If you want to understand the fight over the word "marriage", then imagine if schools started calling lunch "communion" and served juice and crackers distributed by the principle who had a white robe and tall hat on. Wouldn't the claim that the state was usurping a religious sacrament have merit?

    The same is true with "marriage" historically it has been the states recognition of what the church does, then it morphed into a state run tax status. If it wasn't the religious social acceptance connected with the sacramental aspect of marriage, and it was only about equal rights.. then equal rights would be given to "civil unions" or some other purely legal title. If you ask me, the gov should not be engaged in the religious act of marriage anyway. Which Ironically, would give us gay marriage tomorrow. If the state simply recognized the religious sacrament of marriage, instead of trying to regulate it, then the state would have to recognize any church marriage.. even the gay churches.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    But we need it because he told us we need it. And it seems he needs it too because it makes him feel good according to lukecash.
    God doesn't need it because He is lacking in something. He needs it in order to have a right relationship with us, and we need to have a right relationship with him.
    To serve man.

  8. #7
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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JimJones
    Quote Originally Posted by Rodriguez
    If a god exists that is omniscient, omnipotent, and wholly benevolent, then you should do whatever that god asks or suggests that you do. To do otherwise is irrational.
    Not at all. If god exists then he should allow us to be responsible for our own actions. So long as he fully enumerates those actions that is. If I were God, I'd have a long list of:

    If you do X then Y will happen because Z.
    JJ, unlike you or me, a god who is omniscient knows beyond any possible doubt the consequences, both intended and unintended, of every act, correct?

    A god who is wholly good will only want what is for the best, correct?

    Therefore, to do what you think is best is irrational, IF what you think is best differs from what an omniscient, wholly benevolent god thinks is best, because in effect you or more or less guessing, with limited information, at what is best and the god would know without question what is best.

    Indeed to follow [an omnisicent, wholly good] God blindly is irrational to me.[Edited by Rodriguez]
    No, it's irrational to do otherwise. It's irrational because both you and the god want what is best to occur. The god, however, knows beyond any doubt what is best because the god has access to ALL information. You may or may not know what is best because your information is limited.

    Think of it this way. A 2-year-old wants his ball which has rolled into the street. He therefore thinks that what is best in this situation is that he toddle out into the street to fetch his ball.

    The 2-year-old's parent, however, has a different take on the situation because the parent has more information about it. The parent knows that a bus is coming down the street at that very moment, a fact about which the 2-year-old is totally unaware. The parent screams at the 2-year-old to STOP!

    The 2-year-old stops when he hears his parent's command and the 2-year-old lives to toddle another day.

    Most parents love their two-year-old children and most know much more than their 2-year-olds know about the consequences of actions. Do you believe that in virtually every situation a 2-year-old should obey an intelligent parent that loves him?

    If so, then it is inconsistent at best (and probably close to insane, frankly) to say that a 2-year-old should obey his parent in virtually every situation BUT that in some situations a human being should not obey an omniscient and wholly loving god.

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Religious answers in Blue
    Secular answers in Green

    1. Human sacrifices.

    Because God is greater than men so when their interests collide men give their lives.

    God is a construct to create an ultimate authority where there otherwise is none. Any ultimate authority also calls for the sacrifice of ones own life sine we humans are not ultimate. Without this demonstration the authority figure of god looses significant power and thus the functionality he serves.

    2. Praying.

    God enjoys the glory of being worshiped and prayer is part of worship. Those who ask things of god in prayer are seeking his largess which is assumed ultimately beneficial. Some of course use prayer to accomplish purely selfish goals.

    One of the benefits of ultimate authority is it relieves the individual of any perceived responsibility for matters outside their control. To put ones fate in god's hands is a relaxing and stress reducing action. Also for more selfish prayers it is simply human greed at work.

    3. Why does God need confirmation of belief all the time?

    God doesn't need it, God deserves it.

    God doesn't, but worshipers do. Without the showing of authority to god he looses perceived power and importance and thus cannot serve the psychological or social role he is designed to fulfill.

    4. Why aren't religious people embarrassed when they do the things they do?

    Because it is not an expression of themselves but of God and one would never be embarrassed by God.

    The whole point is that religion allows for these kinds of behaviors without embarrassment. They are emotional expressions that are cathartic but outside of this abdication of responsibility would be embarrassing in most social groups. The church becomes a high trust environment where shared cathartic experiences can be had.

    5. But why does God require this kind of thinking?

    Because it is the truth and God only values the truth.

    Because the more people you have in agreement with you the stronger your trust and faith in God which provides you a sense of peace and security. Doubters create a social tension and an implicit attack on your beliefs.

    6. Isn't it a bit primitive to make offerings and what not to God?

    The only true offering is devotion, other ceremonies are a reflection of that. God does not need offerings, he is entitled to them.

    I think so, but if it makes people feel good I don't mind.
    Feed me some debate pellets!

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    James 4:2-3 You have not because you do not ask.
    So when you don't pray, you don't get what you could have asked for. But we don't get what we seek to consume on our own lusts.
    Er, wait, I thought that God didn't respond to prayers other than to listen to them.

    No, God is worthy because he is the "that than which a greater can not be conceived".
    Hmmm. I only semi-understand why people love Steve Jobs (even though I like the tech too) so I suppose it must be an extension of those kinds of emotions.


    Not at all. We have free will, and we are to have a "relationship" with God. Prayer is a part of relationship. If you do not want a relationship with the God, then you can have that if you like... Not a very good decision IMO.
    Yes, it does seem to be loaded towards prayer being not really a choice!


    First, there is "ramming your religion down throats"... No one is forced to go to church, no one is forced to adhere to the sacraments, and the gay marriage debate is not about the church forcing religion on anyone. As it has been pointed out, gay marriage is not illegal, it simply isn't recognized and conferred all of the status of real marriage. If you want to see real forcing of religion, then go where you are killed or persecuted by the state in the name of God.
    Yes, but the only people preventing it are those using the reasonings from their religion in order to oppose it.


    If you want to call the basic social pressures that any group has on society,"ramming religion", then you are barking up the wrong tree. If simply speaking the word, or proclaiming it is considered 'ramming down throats", then I question your grasp of what that phrase really means.
    It is when other people's rights are at stake - and it is much more than 'words', it is actions. I for one, am not too bothered for those Christians that choose to die rather than take medicine; but it bothers me a great deal when they do it to their children. At that point the freedom of speech and the freedom to practice religion are affecting other people that are either innocent or nothing to do with your religion nor will they harm your religion. So yes, it is ramming religion in this specific case.

    If you want to understand the fight over the word "marriage", then imagine if schools started calling lunch "communion" and served juice and crackers distributed by the principle who had a white robe and tall hat on. Wouldn't the claim that the state was usurping a religious sacrament have merit?
    It has little to do with marriage and everything to do with being against homosexuality.

    The same is true with "marriage" historically it has been the states recognition of what the church does, then it morphed into a state run tax status. If it wasn't the religious social acceptance connected with the sacramental aspect of marriage, and it was only about equal rights.. then equal rights would be given to "civil unions" or some other purely legal title. If you ask me, the gov should not be engaged in the religious act of marriage anyway. Which Ironically, would give us gay marriage tomorrow. If the state simply recognized the religious sacrament of marriage, instead of trying to regulate it, then the state would have to recognize any church marriage.. even the gay churches.
    Well, as you point out there are probably lots of laws and statutes and processes built upon the concept of marriage. It's probably easier to take this direction and to allow for gay marriage. No one is forcing churches to do the marrying after all.


    God doesn't need it because He is lacking in something. He needs it in order to have a right relationship with us, and we need to have a right relationship with him.
    So the right relationship isn't a dignified discussion between two intelligent beings but one has to prostrate themselves in front of the other. Strange relationship!

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Er, wait, I thought that God didn't respond to prayers other than to listen to them.
    That is not my experience, nor the christian belief.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Hmmm. I only semi-understand why people love Steve Jobs (even though I like the tech too) so I suppose it must be an extension of those kinds of emotions.
    That you worship may be an emotional response, and that makes sense because we are emotion beings.
    That one is WORTHY of worship/praise is another issue.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Yes, it does seem to be loaded towards prayer being not really a choice!
    How so?

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    I for one, am not too bothered for those Christians that choose to die rather than take medicine; but it bothers me a great deal when they do it to their children. At that point the freedom of speech and the freedom to practice religion are affecting other people that are either innocent or nothing to do with your religion nor will they harm your religion. So yes, it is ramming religion in this specific case.
    So, religious people shouldn't be allowed to raise their children, because you disagree...
    So your beliefs need to be "rammed down" the throats of other people and their children?
    But it's reasonable for you to do so, and unreasonable for the religious to do the same.

    Makes perfect sense.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    It has little to do with marriage and everything to do with being against homosexuality.
    I'm not debating homosexual marriage here.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    So the right relationship isn't a dignified discussion between two intelligent beings but one has to prostrate themselves in front of the other. Strange relationship!
    HAHA! Once you understand who God is, and who YOU are. the only thing strange is that God would bother at all.
    That Jesus (God in the Flesh) would become like us and die for us is then even more powerful example of the extent of his love for us.

    If you are asking these questions for real answers, then you can seek to understand them.
    If you are asking in order to create opportunity to ridicule and criticize, then you will learn nothing real.
    To serve man.

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    That is not my experience, nor the christian belief.
    Wait, it was you that just said "James 4:2-3 You have not because you do not ask.
    So when you don't pray, you don't get what you could have asked for. But we don't get what we seek to consume on our own lusts. "


    That you worship may be an emotional response, and that makes sense because we are emotion beings.
    That one is WORTHY of worship/praise is another issue.
    Yeah, not feeling you on that one. I'm not a stone but worship does seem to be a rather primitive response.

    How so?
    From what you said above. That some (or rather most) people seem rather predisposed to need the emotional release of worship and prayer on a regular basis. And this is strengthened or conditioned because the religion requires such actions too. I'm wondering whether it is just one big feedback loop. I have no doubt of the emotional benefits from prayer and religion.


    So, religious people shouldn't be allowed to raise their children, because you disagree...
    So your beliefs need to be "rammed down" the throats of other people and their children?
    But it's reasonable for you to do so, and unreasonable for the religious to do the same.
    Makes perfect sense.
    Well yes, if you count killing children as 'raising them'. Because my beliefs aren't killing people and there are plenty of religious beliefs that directly, in actuality, with pre-meditation and planning that cause the actual deaths of children! In a secular society, free of religious thinking, killing children is wrong.

    And back to the OP, it seems that the kinds of emotions that go towards worship of God are present in the prayers for children that are dying from the lack of medicine.


    HAHA! Once you understand who God is, and who YOU are. the only thing strange is that God would bother at all.
    That Jesus (God in the Flesh) would become like us and die for us is then even more powerful example of the extent of his love for us.
    Not really, it seems that God's current methods of killing everyone that disagree with him has not been working out too well for his tribe. So he decides to take a direct action as a native - like Avatar. I have zero care that this incarnation died because it was just a automaton controlled by God: who cares if an android displays feelings and screams in pain - it's not a real person! And even if it was, Jesus was probably like a toenail getting clipped compared to God. So I really do not understand the sacrifice part of it at all. It makes no sense within the Christian narrative.

    If you are asking these questions for real answers, then you can seek to understand them.
    If you are asking in order to create opportunity to ridicule and criticize, then you will learn nothing real.
    I don't mean to mock but in order to learn I am translating your world view into my world view. I find that even if I step into your shoes and accept the sacrifice of God, it makes no sense to worship what is essentially God mocking us by making a clone that looks and speaks and smells like us, but at the same time is endowed with supernatural powers that no other human possesses. Jesus' entire function is to be a puppet, not as an independent human being who sacrificed himself on his own cognizance; only the latter interpretation in my mind, deserves worship. Your version of events feels like manipulation to me.

    Secondly, I do mean my comment seriously. Two intelligent beings should be able to communicate on as equal a basis as possible: this usually means the more intelligent one has to lower themselves a bit; not the less intelligent one debasing themselves. A respectful leader does not need such worship.

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Wait, it was you that just said "James 4:2-3 You have not because you do not ask.
    So when you don't pray, you don't get what you could have asked for. But we don't get what we seek to consume on our own lusts. "
    Yes, that doesn't mean that God doesn't answer prayers. It means that He does.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Yeah, not feeling you on that one. I'm not a stone but worship does seem to be a rather primitive response.
    Primitive.. as in Old
    or
    Primitive as in, backwards unthinking?

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    From what you said above. That some (or rather most) people seem rather predisposed to need the emotional release of worship and prayer on a regular basis. And this is strengthened or conditioned because the religion requires such actions too. I'm wondering whether it is just one big feedback loop. I have no doubt of the emotional benefits from prayer and religion.
    That seems to be a thought you are taking into this discussion. Not one you are able to conclude from what I have said.
    Besides, there is nothing wrong with being taught how to pray.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Well yes, if you count killing children as 'raising them'. Because my beliefs aren't killing people and there are plenty of religious beliefs that directly, in actuality, with pre-meditation and planning that cause the actual deaths of children! In a secular society, free of religious thinking, killing children is wrong.
    Right, you are probably pointing to some of the extreme examples of where people pray for a child with cancer to get better, and they end up dying .. yes?
    I am certain you also count every child that is killed by medication against secularism (to be fair and all).
    And what of the times children are HEALED from prayer? Do you simply not count that? Should we then also discount every child who was healed through surgery or any other medical treatment?

    By the way.. which one do you think causes more deaths? Prayer or the medical community (which you apparently "worship" and place your "faith" in)

    Edit... O yea. lets not consider the secular practice of systematically killing children deemed to be unworthy called "ABORTION".

    Edit-edit.. It seems to me that this idea of yours is based on a very, very small segment that represents and EXTREME of christian belief. It certainly isn't a mainstream christian belief to kill children rather than have them medicated.
    The only simi mainstream issues you could possibly bring up are themselves controversial in nature. It also seems like you are trying to compare best to worst, instead of an even evaluation.
    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    And back to the OP, it seems that the kinds of emotions that go towards worship of God are present in the prayers for children that are dying from the lack of medicine.
    I am not understanding you.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Not really, it seems that God's current methods of killing everyone that disagree with him has not been working out too well for his tribe. So he decides to take a direct action as a native - like Avatar. I have zero care that this incarnation died because it was just a automaton controlled by God: who cares if an android displays feelings and screams in pain - it's not a real person! And even if it was, Jesus was probably like a toenail getting clipped compared to God. So I really do not understand the sacrifice part of it at all. It makes no sense within the Christian narrative.
    First, and avatar is not an android. Your idea of how even that works is inconsistent.
    Second, the "avatar" view is not very far off. But even as an avatar He would experience life just like we do.

    But Christ is not an avatar of God. He is "the word made flesh". He is TRULY man and TRULY God.
    So your distinction is not consistent with Christianity, nor with itself.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    I don't mean to mock but in order to learn I am translating your world view into my world view. I find that even if I step into your shoes and accept the sacrifice of God, it makes no sense to worship what is essentially God mocking us by making a clone that looks and speaks and smells like us, but at the same time is endowed with supernatural powers that no other human possesses. Jesus' entire function is to be a puppet, not as an independent human being who sacrificed himself on his own cognizance; only the latter interpretation in my mind, deserves worship. Your version of events feels like manipulation to me.
    You are mistaken, so I understand your confusion. Jesus had his own will and it was exemplified many times. Specifically in the garden. Christ also operated by God's power through faith just like we do.
    He said we(his followers) would do GREATER things than He. So you are incorrect about the power thing.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    I don't mean to mock but in order to learn I am translating your world view into my world view. I find that even if I step into your shoes and accept the sacrifice of God, it makes no sense to worship what is essentially God mocking us by making a clone that looks and speaks and smells like us, but at the same time is endowed with supernatural powers that no other human possesses. Jesus' entire function is to be a puppet, not as an independent human being who sacrificed himself on his own cognizance; only the latter interpretation in my mind, deserves worship. Your version of events feels like manipulation to me.
    If you do not see Jesus as God lowering himself... then you simply do not understand what was occurring.

    Second, it is not debasing ourselves IMO to worship God. To think that it is some how "beneath" you and thus "debasing yourself' is a sign of pride. That one views self as more important than God, or that the opinion of others is more important than God.
    That is simply incorrect.
    To serve man.

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JimJones8934 View Post
    OK, I can understand the debt angle but doesn't that in turn make us indentured slaves?
    We would be that, and deservedly so, if we didn't have a savior who can pay the debt that we can't. So He calls us friends.

    2. We do it not because it is an exercise in order to get something, confirm something, or beg for anything. We appeal to God who has said that He hears us, and we are confident that what He does is good. That's all there is to it. We voice our concerns and He is happy to hear them. Paul says that Christians ought to live in a spirit of prayer, which means we ought to always direct our concerns towards God and live in constant communion with Him. It's more about the state of being with God than it is about a set of expectations.

    I would believe that if some of the prayers weren't so self serving. I'm talking about the big prayer events such as Rick Perry's pray for rain (which didn't work anyway). To me those are ultimately prayers for more stuff. Even the prayers after a disaster makes no sense because why would there be a pre-emptive prayer to not have any of those things happen anyway? I understand the point that God won't do anything in response to prayer but it seems to me, from the person doing the praying, that God doesn't need to listen because he already knows our brain patterns and emotional responses towards real world events. So it seems that prayer is more about us, the 'constant communion' that you describe, in which case, again - what is the point if we know our prayer changes nothing and God already knows what is in our heads?
    You can believe that, because it is biblical. People who "Pray for rain" are not at all an exemplary representation of Christian prayer. Take a look at Jesus' prayers, especially ones such as the Lord's prayer and the high priestly prayer, from the sermon on the mount and the last supper, respectively, and you can see a very different type of prayer.

    As for the point about our concerns already being in our heads, which God already knows intimately, I think there are two main points that can help here:

    1. Praying involves more of a process than just being concerned about something. When you pray, you lift up those concerns that you have to God, and the act signifies that you aren't capable of solving everything yourself. The difference here is between a thoughtful appeal and a mere thought.

    2. Prayers aren't necessarily verbal. The most meaningful ones can be had all inside of someone's head.

    3. God doesn't need confirmation of anything. Who are we to confirm for Him something that He has always confidently known? But what it is, is confirmation for us. We extol His virtues and confirm our belief in Him good and often, because it's good for us and He says that the outpour of our hearts is like a pleasant fragrance to Him. And what's the waste? How is any praise wasted when it is of an object that worthy? What are we supposed to do instead? Bite the hand that feeds us? Am I not supposed to say thank you when someone treats me wonderfully? And how much more thanks does He deserve.

    Well, a polite response to a thank you is "you're welcome". Which I don't believe God usually says. Instead it is much like talking to a brick wall. At what point does the lack of acknowledgement of thanks become just rude? It does seem one directional.
    The relationship isn't one directional at all, yet I can see what you mean, how that the communication can often seem pretty one directional. But there is some precedent behind that that you're not registering here: God is not our peer. He may be our friend, but He is not accountable to us and does not have the burden of informing us all the time. We have His Word, which spells out quite a bit already. Also, God responds with far greater variety and affect than we can imitate or comprehend. In the interim between the old and new testaments, people must have been put off pretty hard by their seemingly unanswered prayers. The country was conquered, their messiah was nowhere to be found, and they even had rulers who slandered God by participating in Roman rituals (Herod Antipas being a famous example). Yet God came back at them with a much more powerful "your welcome" than a few hollow words.

    4. They aren't embarrassed because of the substance behind those kinds of actions. They aren't embarrassed because we aren't base creatures that need always worry ourselves with appearances. How would you feel if you were enraptured by the presence of God, and felt that He was gifting you with His own brand of speech? Now I don't interpret the gift of tongues that way, and you don't appear to believe that either, but we can still appreciate what that means to them, and it isn't anything to be ashamed of. They take the wonderful things stored up in them, and publicly pour them out. Why should someone who has a mind towards healing, knowledge, love, and mercy be ashamed of expressing that? I don't see what they should express instead.

    Well, I would say that it is because we are not base creatures that we do worry about appearances: once we took a bite of that apple, we became self-conscious. However, I don't think people should suppress what they feel they need to do, I suppose. But at the same time, it is like watching primitive tribes in Africa. Surely, we of a modern era can be just a little more dignified?
    So Adam and Eve were base creatures before they had a sin nature? Interesting, considering that Adam was in communion with God before then. We are self conscious because we fear condemnation, and restrict ourselves from even doing some good things because someone may condemn us out of ignorance. The notion that mere appearances, as opposed to genuine substance, is what dictates a person's dignity, happens to be one of the things defined as part of our sin nature in the Bible.

    5. That is because of what's at stake when it comes to the issue of religion. We share our beliefs and hope that others come to have a relationship with Christ, because if we happen to be right then that would be a whole lot better for them, wouldn't it? Should we hope that they die and don't come into the presence of God and bask in the glory of heaven forever? No, we hope the best for them, and we try to be a factor in making sure that the best happens for them.

    I understand the need to share the good news. But I use Macs but I don't feel the need to make everyone else have one. Everyone has a choice and so saying that Macs are the only way and PCs are miserable ways to do computing is just wrong to me. Actually, further, I use Macs and PCs so I know more than most people that Macs are less hassle than PCs. But I wouldn't begrudge a PC user at all and I too hope that they get their work done without jumping through too many hoops or crashing.

    So we're on the same page. But then I won't keep trying to convince them after one conversation or try to win them over by constant references and nagging. This isn't the same some religions, *cough* Jehovah's Witness *cough* who make it a mission to convert people.
    The key difference here between your example and the religious example, is that computers are nifty pieces of technology, while one's eternal fate is of monumentally more importance. Would you just watch someone run right into traffic?

    6. God doesn't need offerings. He finds them pleasant. The whole point of an offering, no matter the time period (which may dictate the type and amount), is to set aside something of ours with which to do him reverence. It symbolizes something that happens on the inside. Take a look at the book of Malachi and you can see that God finds offerings detestable when they are given hypocritically. Offerings are an aid for us, not Him. We take something tangible and set it aside, in order to affirm concretely something that can feel less tangible at times.

    I understand this but these seem to be very human responses. Yes, my millionaire boss doesn't need another tie or bottle of wine but I still buy it for him every year and he is appreciative because he knows I'm not a suck-up. But for the giver, surely, you are just giving what God gave you in the first place to give back to him? He created the universe so it's a bit weird to have you give him what he created as your offering. For God, it must look a bit weird. It's like if your GF buys you something with money she took out of your wallet. It's awkward.
    The issue here is that your examples are of when a gift is given to someone and it doesn't mean much to that person, yet what we are looking at with sacrifice and offerings to God is a markedly different thing. We take things that are meaningful to us, and set them aside for Him. If it's a fattened calf then we have to do without that fattened calf, don't we? In that way it can be a great tangible aid in worship. What God gets out of it is our zeal. Without zeal the whole ordeal is meaningless to Him, and even detestable, because of hypocrisy.
    Last edited by Lukecash12; January 24th, 2013 at 01:55 AM.
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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    Yes, that doesn't mean that God doesn't answer prayers. It means that He does.
    No he doesn't: Perry's big prayer for rain, just got more drought!


    Primitive.. as in Old
    or
    Primitive as in, backwards unthinking?
    Primitive as in unsophisticated, uncivilized perhaps,


    That seems to be a thought you are taking into this discussion. Not one you are able to conclude from what I have said.
    Besides, there is nothing wrong with being taught how to pray.
    I see prayer as a meditation - to focus one's mind and to free it of clutter. But yes, that is my interpretation of your experiences of prayer. I don't doubt the emotional benefits, like I said and part of that is the believe that God exists otherwise there would be no point in prayer at all.


    Right, you are probably pointing to some of the extreme examples of where people pray for a child with cancer to get better, and they end up dying .. yes?
    Yes, I am saying this, which is true: correct? I'm not sure if its extreme if there are various Christian groups that believe in this.

    I am certain you also count every child that is killed by medication against secularism (to be fair and all).
    No, because if they are killed by medicine it is either a mistake or a lack of proper research; both of which point to the competency of the medical practitioner. Lack of prayer in a healing processes does not make it secular per se as if medicine is an alternative healing method to prayer!


    And what of the times children are HEALED from prayer? Do you simply not count that? Should we then also discount every child who was healed through surgery or any other medical treatment?
    I'm pretty certain that there are zero children actually healed by prayer and not the medicine and medical care given by doctors through years of education, experience and study that this child received!

    By the way.. which one do you think causes more deaths? Prayer or the medical community (which you apparently "worship" and place your "faith" in)
    Definitely prayer causes more deaths or at least deaths that could have otherwise been avoided. Those deaths caused by the medical community are, usually, either unavoidable or due to incompetence and should not be blamed on the practice of medicine which, for the most part, is science and experience based. Prayer on the other hand is the equivalent of not doing anything other than making everyone feel better about the person they are causing to die.

    Edit... O yea. lets not consider the secular practice of systematically killing children deemed to be unworthy called "ABORTION".
    Children? Really?

    Edit-edit.. It seems to me that this idea of yours is based on a very, very small segment that represents and EXTREME of christian belief. It certainly isn't a mainstream christian belief to kill children rather than have them medicated.
    The only simi mainstream issues you could possibly bring up are themselves controversial in nature. It also seems like you are trying to compare best to worst, instead of an even evaluation.
    I didn't say it was mainstream - I know it's not common. My point was that it is religious thinking that causes this to happen.


    First, and avatar is not an android. Your idea of how even that works is inconsistent.
    Second, the "avatar" view is not very far off. But even as an avatar He would experience life just like we do.
    Yes, because he would possess a human brain. However, whatever connections he has to God or feeds back to God makes him not a full human.

    But Christ is not an avatar of God. He is "the word made flesh". He is TRULY man and TRULY God.
    So your distinction is not consistent with Christianity, nor with itself.
    No, this is consistent. In Avatar, the movie, or even a video game character possesses only those instincts of the controller. So the Avatar is a true flesh Avatar of the world, as are video game characters truly characters within the context of their world. At the same time, they are truly the Avatar controller, or you, the player of the game: those actions aren't due to the character but as a response to you pushing buttons or otherwise controlling the game character's actions within the world.

    So it is with God: Jesus is wholly human but wholly controlled by the essence of God. With all his plans in mind an access to special knowledge and powers.


    You are mistaken, so I understand your confusion. Jesus had his own will and it was exemplified many times. Specifically in the garden. Christ also operated by God's power through faith just like we do.
    He said we(his followers) would do GREATER things than He. So you are incorrect about the power thing.

    If you do not see Jesus as God lowering himself... then you simply do not understand what was occurring.
    Lowering himself as a super human that can perform miracles and not remain killed? With several appearances post-death and a big appearance promised? That's like Superman pretending to be Batman in order to blend in with normal humans.

    Second, it is not debasing ourselves IMO to worship God. To think that it is some how "beneath" you and thus "debasing yourself' is a sign of pride. That one views self as more important than God, or that the opinion of others is more important than God.
    That is simply incorrect.
    No, I understand that this is not how you feel. I only point out what it looks like from the outside and as a non-believer.

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by Lukecash12 View Post
    We would be that, and deservedly so, if we didn't have a savior who can pay the debt that we can't. So He calls us friends.
    Yet, we are in turn indebted to Jesus; who requires us to follow his religion (or at least one of the many denominations), and the precepts of his Church (or rather Churches). A true friend would pay the debt and ask for nothing in return.



    You can believe that, because it is biblical. People who "Pray for rain" are not at all an exemplary representation of Christian prayer. Take a look at Jesus' prayers, especially ones such as the Lord's prayer and the high priestly prayer, from the sermon on the mount and the last supper, respectively, and you can see a very different type of prayer.
    Hmm, this might be an example of a No-True Scotsman fallacy, where you will reject all the examples of actual Christian behavior as not being an exemplary representation, when in fact it is entirely a normal, popular and typical behavior of Christians. And I'm sure Jesus had some great prayers (I've only really known - or rather memorized - or rather had it drummed into me, the Lord's Prayer) which does seem to be self-serving with 'give us this day our daily bread'. So rather than actually working for a living, the prayer is seeking a freebie from God.


    As for the point about our concerns already being in our heads, which God already knows intimately, I think there are two main points that can help here:

    1. Praying involves more of a process than just being concerned about something. When you pray, you lift up those concerns that you have to God, and the act signifies that you aren't capable of solving everything yourself. The difference here is between a thoughtful appeal and a mere thought.

    2. Prayers aren't necessarily verbal. The most meaningful ones can be had all inside of someone's head.
    I think praying is like a meditation so your mind is cleared to focus on what is important; e.g. an exam, a performance or something. So I can see how that could work out well and also provide the reinforcement that prayer works.


    The relationship isn't one directional at all, yet I can see what you mean, how that the communication can often seem pretty one directional. But there is some precedent behind that that you're not registering here: God is not our peer. He may be our friend, but He is not accountable to us and does not have the burden of informing us all the time. We have His Word, which spells out quite a bit already. Also, God responds with far greater variety and affect than we can imitate or comprehend. In the interim between the old and new testaments, people must have been put off pretty hard by their seemingly unanswered prayers. The country was conquered, their messiah was nowhere to be found, and they even had rulers who slandered God by participating in Roman rituals (Herod Antipas being a famous example). Yet God came back at them with a much more powerful "your welcome" than a few hollow words.
    I would venture to say that the communication is always one directional, not just 'often' as you put it. And all you are doing is making excuses as to why there can't be a direct two-way communication.



    So Adam and Eve were base creatures before they had a sin nature? Interesting, considering that Adam was in communion with God before then. We are self conscious because we fear condemnation, and restrict ourselves from even doing some good things because someone may condemn us out of ignorance. The notion that mere appearances, as opposed to genuine substance, is what dictates a person's dignity, happens to be one of the things defined as part of our sin nature in the Bible.
    Yet, you wish to return to a time before we had this dignity: to become naked and ignorant again once we have atoned that particular sin and spend the rest of eternity in heaven? As what? A mindless being? no thanks!


    The key difference here between your example and the religious example, is that computers are nifty pieces of technology, while one's eternal fate is of monumentally more importance. Would you just watch someone run right into traffic?
    The other difference is that we can guarantee that computers exist where 'eternal fate' is something we take on faith exists. This is Pascal's Wager; and to some extent when someone is changing their computer platform, that too is a bet. It is also trust that this new OS is better than the previous one. I think we have the same emotions and decision making processes going on - computers and religion are very similar given how vehemently some fight one side against another: in fact, they are called religious wars for a very good reason!

    The issue here is that your examples are of when a gift is given to someone and it doesn't mean much to that person, yet what we are looking at with sacrifice and offerings to God is a markedly different thing. We take things that are meaningful to us, and set them aside for Him. If it's a fattened calf then we have to do without that fattened calf, don't we? In that way it can be a great tangible aid in worship. What God gets out of it is our zeal. Without zeal the whole ordeal is meaningless to Him, and even detestable, because of hypocrisy.
    Yes, he wants true sacrifice and worship and devotion. Exactly what cult leaders crave also. - to make their followers weak and obedient. To deny dissent and to hate questioning. Exactly the same traits that God and his religion has shown. So how exactly are these great qualities for a leader of men, indeed a leader of humanity, supposed to appeal for a modern human who is very much aware of this?

  17. #16
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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    No he doesn't: Perry's big prayer for rain, just got more drought!
    So. One persons prayer isn't answered... so God doesn't answer any prayer?
    Hasty Generalization.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Primitive as in unsophisticated, uncivilized perhaps,
    Unsophisticated.. really? I don’t think I can take that charge seriously.
    Uncivilized? Another charge I can’t take seriously.
    We are just going to disagree on this one.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    I see prayer as a meditation - to focus one's mind and to free it of clutter. But yes, that is my interpretation of your experiences of prayer. I don't doubt the emotional benefits, like I said and part of that is the believe that God exists otherwise there would be no point in prayer at all.
    I appreciate your view, but it doesn’t really help to project that onto Christianity if you are trying to understand Christianity and God from the Christian perspective. You are no longer telling me what Christian prayer looks like, only your preconceived idea of what prayer is.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Yes, I am saying this, which is true: correct? I'm not sure if its extreme if there are various Christian groups that believe in this.
    Extreme in that it is such a small minority ,that refuse medical aid as a whole, as to be irrelevant to the consideration of Christianity as a whole. If you are going to judge all of Christianity by it's minority, why not the best instead of the worst?
    Or better yet, evaluate Christianity by its core ideas and tenants, instead of the fringe.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    No, because if they are killed by medicine it is either a mistake or a lack of proper research; both of which point to the competency of the medical practitioner. Lack of prayer in a healing processes does not make it secular per se as if medicine is an alternative healing method to prayer!
    Your right it is wrong to equate the two… medicine doesn’t heal people only prayer does *L*

    *I say that partly joking as a play on the goal of medicine VS the goal of prayer, because medicine has the goal of AIDING the body in its natural healing process.
    Prayer on the other hand is appealing to an outside healing source, so it is proper to call it “healing method” and improper to call medicine the same thing in the same sense.. That isn’t how people generally use the idea of “healing”, so it is supposed to be punny.

    Anyway. Why not give prayer the same consideration? Why not conclude that it was a lack of faith or sin in the persons life that hindered their prayers?

    You appear to be judging with weighted scales. In which case I promise you will get the results you want.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    I'm pretty certain that there are zero children actually healed by prayer and not the medicine and medical care given by doctors through years of education, experience and study that this child received!
    I thought you were comparing prayer only to medication only.
    Regardless, you put your faith where you like.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Definitely prayer causes more deaths or at least deaths that could have otherwise been avoided. Those deaths caused by the medical community are, usually, either unavoidable or due to incompetence and should not be blamed on the practice of medicine which, for the most part, is science and experience based. Prayer on the other hand is the equivalent of not doing anything other than making everyone feel better about the person they are causing to die.
    You contradict yourself. You charge prayer with “avoidable” deaths.
    Special pleading much. Every case of “incompetence” is by definition an “avoidable” outcome.
    Then give the medical community a pass on all the AVOIDABLE deaths they cause?
    You do not make an even comparison for while you judge prayer on the application and outcome, you judge medicine by it's ideals. Try apples to apples and fair consideration its a much better tool to reach truth.


    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Children? Really?
    Yes, that is what we call “developing humans”. When they are fully developed we call them “adult”. No worries, you are giving a pass to much less controversial things that causes a measurable amount of deaths. So no point in arguing about the Cherry on top.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    No, this is consistent. In Avatar, the movie, or even a video game character possesses only those instincts of the controller. So the Avatar is a true flesh Avatar of the world, as are video game characters truly characters within the context of their world. At the same time, they are truly the Avatar controller, or you, the player of the game: those actions aren't due to the character but as a response to you pushing buttons or otherwise controlling the game character's actions within the world.
    You are using the sense of “fully man and fully god”.
    That was not the case for Jesus. Where as God is a maximum being, Jesus “increased in wisdom”. Jesus is said to “Be made perfect” (Hebrews 2:10). He “learned obedience” (Hebrews 5:8).

    Anyway, you can insist on your preconceived notion, but the Christian concept is different, and supported in it’s difference.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Lowering himself as a super human that can perform miracles and not remain killed? With several appearances post-death and a big appearance promised? That's like Superman pretending to be Batman in order to blend in with normal humans.
    Not what occurred. That is what you are bringing into it. I have offered scriptural support, you are not offering anything.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    No, I understand that this is not how you feel. I only point out what it looks like from the outside and as a non-believer.
    I think you are bringing to many preconceived notions into your evaluation to give it an honest look. The “avatar” point is an perfect example. There are significant differences that I have pointed out which preclude “avatar” as being a sufficient description.
    To serve man.

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by MindTrap028 View Post
    So. One persons prayer isn't answered... so God doesn't answer any prayer?
    Hasty Generalization.
    Wait a second. It was thousands of the best quality Christians that Perry could muster (other religions were denied).


    Unsophisticated.. really? I don’t think I can take that charge seriously.
    Uncivilized? Another charge I can’t take seriously.
    We are just going to disagree on this one.
    You can't put lipstick on a pig. You can dress it up with as much pomp and circumstance and gold and ritual but at the base level it's dressed up tribal dancing. No offense but it is part of my OP to pursue this point because prayer just lacks a modern je ne sais quoi.

    I appreciate your view, but it doesn’t really help to project that onto Christianity if you are trying to understand Christianity and God from the Christian perspective. You are no longer telling me what
    Christian prayer looks like, only your preconceived idea of what prayer is.
    True but I am just reflecting back at you what I understand as an outsider. And to be honest, it is difficult to look at yourself from the outside. I understand your words but I don't see them getting any closer to understanding the obsequiousness. It's like you guys are Adam & Eve, unaware that you're behaving like modern primitives, a bit embarrassing on the one hand and frankly scary on the other (e.g. screaming, wailing, speaking in tongue, etc.)


    Extreme in that it is such a small minority ,that refuse medical aid as a whole, as to be irrelevant to the consideration of Christianity as a whole. If you are going to judge all of Christianity by it's minority, why not the best instead of the worst?
    Or better yet, evaluate Christianity by its core ideas and tenants, instead of the fringe.
    Well, all systems should be judged on both it's best and it's worst. The best is clear, Christianity has brought us thus far and unified the world through a single unified religion (albiet in lots of competing denominations). I am just saying that thanks for the journey; it's time to let go.

    But I don't object to Christianity per se but all sorts of religious thinking. We hear stories of Islamic parents killing their children but those seem to be tribal, so that lets the religion off the hook. So when one hears of Christians killing children (denied medicine, not reading the Bible properly, witch-craft) what is the source but religion itself: the process of a system that overtakes familial ties and taboo.

    The core tenants are actually quite repulsive: a deity impregnates a human to give birth some kind of version of himself in order that this 'Avatar' will disrupt an existing religion such that he would be forced to be killed. And being an Avatar, there is always a spare and once the memory has been downloaded from the dead one back to the new one, it comes back to start a new religion in order to get more humans to worship you. It is both deceitful and horrifying.

    On the other hand if you want to discuss the tenants of Jesus (before all the self-anointed deification) I think he had some great points. However, those points might be better from the original religion of Buddhism that he took them from.


    Your right it is wrong to equate the two… medicine doesn’t heal people only prayer does *L*

    *I say that partly joking as a play on the goal of medicine VS the goal of prayer, because medicine has the goal of AIDING the body in its natural healing process.
    Prayer on the other hand is appealing to an outside healing source, so it is proper to call it “healing method” and improper to call medicine the same thing in the same sense.. That isn’t how people generally use the idea of “healing”, so it is supposed to be punny.
    Errr. :-). Still medicine doesn't just aid, it cures but physically doing something to change the body. It doesn't always make the body do something. On the other hand, prayer helps the mind, which is also how homeopathy (another placebo effect) works.


    Anyway. Why not give prayer the same consideration? Why not conclude that it was a lack of faith or sin in the persons life that hindered their prayers?
    I'm sure that the parents would have considered those risks before trying this on their children (and hopefully themselves one day). I haven't read any followup from these people as to how their failure affected them. Though recently a few articles have come out with parents who have lost children because they weren't vaccinated expressing deep regret.

    You appear to be judging with weighted scales. In which case I promise you will get the results you want.
    That's not fair. Either you're saying that prayer doesn't really work (which is fine) or doesn't really work that way (which is also fine) or that their particular branch is non-sense (fine too) or that there is some other explanation. But I've given you a sample of a lot of people doing the same thing per their religion with little results. In fact, the last election was another good example with many more prayers, I'm sure!


    You contradict yourself. You charge prayer with “avoidable” deaths.
    Special pleading much. Every case of “incompetence” is by definition an “avoidable” outcome.
    Then give the medical community a pass on all the AVOIDABLE deaths they cause?
    You do not make an even comparison for while you judge prayer on the application and outcome, you judge medicine by it's ideals. Try apples to apples and fair consideration its a much better tool to reach truth.
    Well, the difference is that more prayer, more fervent prayer doesn't help. Whereas more science, understanding what went wrong, does help. So when a child of a Church couple dies, the rest of the congregation will use the excuses you brought up - they weren't sufficiently sinless enough (assuming that were a requirement) or didn't pray correctly. In science, we know the conditions and the actions that cause the death and we look at other cases to come to new conclusions and ideas. Medicine still doesn't really get a pass in the sense that they should be testing better but even then, if the root cause is down to lack of testing, then testing will be improved.

    Medicine's goal is actually to save lives; prayer is just wishing for something at best. So I am comparing both systems similarly, though maybe more clearly now.


    You are using the sense of “fully man and fully god”.
    That was not the case for Jesus. Where as God is a maximum being, Jesus “increased in wisdom”. Jesus is said to “Be made perfect” (Hebrews 2:10). He “learned obedience” (Hebrews 5:8).
    Anyway, you can insist on your preconceived notion, but the Christian concept is different, and supported in it’s difference.
    The avatar is an analogy. At some basic level there was a human being that claimed to be God. So there has to be a physical way for this to happen, for Jesus to be self-aware as God and also to perform the miracles. So the good thing about an Avatar, assuming Jesus grew up as a normal child, was that at some point, God, was able to insert new memories into his brain. Or, since God created this human, there may have been a bunch of brain cells that would awaken at a certain time. Either way, Jesus, had to have had some special input into his genes and brain that no other human has.

    What I am trying to speculate with you is how your scenario would work in the real world that we live in.

    Not what occurred. That is what you are bringing into it. I have offered scriptural support, you are not offering anything.
    I thought Jesus appeared to some of the disciples three days after he died (enough time to recover the memories from Avatar one and transplant them into Avatar two). And Paul. And he promises to do it again in the future.


    I think you are bringing to many preconceived notions into your evaluation to give it an honest look. The “avatar” point is an perfect example. There are significant differences that I have pointed out which preclude “avatar” as being a sufficient description.
    Perhaps we are talking past each other. I'm trying to understand Jesus, the human, in terms of science (fiction) that I can believe.

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    Wait a second. It was thousands of the best quality Christians that Perry could muster (other religions were denied).
    ...so the answer was "no". I'm sure you can understand that "no" is a valid answer. To be honest, do you really want God answering "yes" to most people's prayers? Probably not. Considering we don't know everything and God does, it would be silly for Him to essentially "let us run the show" when we're the ones who botched it all up in the first place. This is why we submit to God's will in prayer, regardless of what we are asking or how desperate the situation is. This is a huge part of Jesus' teaching on prayer.

    You said your goal in the OP was the following, and I wanted to address a few things:

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    To understand why religious people, of all faiths AFAIK, need to fawn and praise and generally act a rather undignified when it comes to their God (or Gods).
    I don't really understand your usage of "undignified" here. Could you clarify?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    You can't put lipstick on a pig. You can dress it up with as much pomp and circumstance and gold and ritual but at the base level it's dressed up tribal dancing. No offense but it is part of my OP to pursue this point because prayer just lacks a modern je ne sais quoi.
    Examples of "modern" tribal dancing:

    1. Tens of thousands of spectators, most of whom are dressed in "tribal" colors and some of whom have their faces painted in said colors, wildly chanting and cheering on a group of men on a field wearing the same colors trying to get a oddly-shaped ball into their opposing team's "endzone".

    2. Thousands of spectators in an arena, wildly cheering and singing along and waving their hands in the air with a small group of people on a stage with musical instruments.

    3. College Fraternities. Nothing more needs to be said.

    Regardless, I'm not sure what "modern" prayer would look like. From what you have written, it seems you do. Care to elaborate?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    It's like you guys are Adam & Eve, unaware that you're behaving like modern primitives, a bit embarrassing on the one hand and frankly scary on the other (e.g. screaming, wailing, speaking in tongue, etc.)
    How would a "modern", "civilized" person interact with God?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    I am just saying that thanks for the journey; it's time to let go.
    In other words: Let's throw the baby out with the bathwater.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    The core tenants are actually quite repulsive: a deity impregnates a human to give birth some kind of version of himself in order that this 'Avatar' will disrupt an existing religion such that he would be forced to be killed. And being an Avatar, there is always a spare and once the memory has been downloaded from the dead one back to the new one, it comes back to start a new religion in order to get more humans to worship you. It is both deceitful and horrifying.

    On the other hand if you want to discuss the tenants of Jesus (before all the self-anointed deification) I think he had some great points. However, those points might be better from the original religion of Buddhism that he took them from.
    Off-topic: It's "tenet". Jesus did not own an apartment complex and we aren't discussing the people renting from Him.

    If you are using the film "Avatar" to describe and understand Christianity, you will never get an accurate description and will never get past a level of understanding which is on par with a 3-year-old. You are approaching Christianity like a child. C.S. Lewis said it best in Mere Christianity:

    It is no good asking for a simple religion. After all, real things are not simple. They look simple, but they are not. The table I am sitting at looks simple: but ask a scientist to tell you what it is really made of--all about the atoms and how the light waves rebound from them and hit my eye and what they do to the optic nerve and what it does to my brain--and, of course, you find that what we call "seeing a table" lands you in mysteries and complications which you can hardly get to the end of. A child saying a child's prayer looks simple. And if you are content to stop there, well and good. But if you are not--and the modern world usually is not--if you want to go on and ask what is really happening--then you must be prepared for something difficult. If we ask for something more than simplicity, it is silly then to complain that the something more is not simple.

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    On the other hand if you want to discuss the tenants of Jesus (before all the self-anointed deification) I think he had some great points. However, those points might be better from the original religion of Buddhism that he took them from.
    Care to support that Jesus "took" His teachings from the "original religion of Buddhism"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    At some basic level there was a human being that claimed to be God. So there has to be a physical way for this to happen, for Jesus to be self-aware as God and also to perform the miracles.
    Why must there be a physical (i.e. purely natural) means?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jim
    Perhaps we are talking past each other. I'm trying to understand Jesus, the human, in terms of science (fiction) that I can believe.
    What do you mean by "science"?

  20. #19
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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Wait a second. It was thousands of the best quality Christians that Perry could muster (other religions were denied).
    Let me rephrase it then...

    One prayer doesn't get answered like many people would like, thus God doesn't answer ANY prayer?
    Still a hasty generalization.
    also Freund is right, seems the answer was "no".

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    You can't put lipstick on a pig. You can dress it up with as much pomp and circumstance and gold and ritual but at the base level it's dressed up tribal dancing. No offense but it is part of my OP to pursue this point because prayer just lacks a modern je ne sais quoi.
    I appreciate your random, esthetic value placement . ... but I don't really care.
    If agreeing to disagree was to non-specific, then I am sure you will understand that
    Me not caring about your esthetic personal preferences, is my way of saying that there is nothing to debate on this point.


    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    True but I am just reflecting back at you what I understand as an outsider. And to be honest, it is difficult to look at yourself from the outside. I understand your words but I don't see them getting any closer to understanding the obsequiousness. It's like you guys are Adam & Eve, unaware that you're behaving like modern primitives, a bit embarrassing on the one hand and frankly scary on the other (e.g. screaming, wailing, speaking in tongue, etc.)
    I'm sorry that you find humans expressing emotion to be "embarrassing". I suppose it makes sense given our cultures rejection of basic human elements, and the constant suppression of emotions
    of otherwise normal human development and expression other than telling people off. Do you also hate "girl movies" that make you cry, and think people "embarrass" themselves when they do?
    (I hope you don't mind being lumped into a random segment of the population).

    But if you want to "understand" it. Think of it as different ways people react when being with a long lost loved one.
    Do you find it embarrassing when the same kinds of things are expressed by people to husbands and fathers returning from war?
    I'm just curious if it the idea of human emotions being expressed that you find so embarrassing. If so, then you will just need to grow up and realize that people have emotions and judging them based on that expression alone is hypocritical of you (a human who has and expresses emotions).

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Well, all systems should be judged on both it's best and it's worst. The best is clear, Christianity has brought us thus far and unified the world through a single unified religion (albiet in lots of competing denominations). I am just saying that thanks for the journey; it's time to let go.
    Interesting, the way I see it our society (America) IS letting go of the tenants of Christianity. To the extent that the general population of church going (distinct from "christian") people don't adhere to them. This is most evidently seen by the divorce rate. Yea.. thanks secularism, our country is being destroyed by divorce and broken homes. So, the idea that we need MORE of that... seems to be a very bad idea to me. But hey.. you can want whatever you like. Lets not value the sense of community that comes with practicing Christians, and call for more of the social problems caused specifically by the lack of community.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    But I don't object to Christianity per se but all sorts of religious thinking. We hear stories of Islamic parents killing their children but those seem to be tribal, so that lets the religion off the hook. So when one hears of Christians killing children (denied medicine, not reading the Bible properly, witch-craft) what is the source but religion itself: the process of a system that overtakes familial ties and taboo.
    I think we would all be better off with following Christianity and not having divorce or it being rare(at the price of some crazy people so called "Killing" their children) than having the epidemic of broken family's that secularism(alternative to religion) can take credit for.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    The core tenants are actually quite repulsive: a deity impregnates a human to give birth some kind of version of himself in order that this 'Avatar' will disrupt an existing religion such that he would be forced to be killed. And being an Avatar, there is always a spare and once the memory has been downloaded from the dead one back to the new one, it comes back to start a new religion in order to get more humans to worship you. It is both deceitful and horrifying.
    I'm defending Christianity, not whatever religion you are talking about. (IE STRAW-MAN)

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    On the other hand if you want to discuss the tenants of Jesus (before all the self-anointed deification) I think he had some great points. However, those points might be better from the original religion of Buddhism that he took them from.
    In this thread all I can do is answer direct questions and give you an explanation in the hopes of you comprehending Christianity for what it is. As opposed to the misinformed preconceived notions that you have.
    In the end you will have to choose what you believe and how you are going to see Christianity.

    So if you have a question I'll try and answer it. If you season your rants with condescending personal preferences, then when I disagree it will sound the same way.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Errr. :-). Still medicine doesn't just aid, it cures but physically doing something to change the body. It doesn't always make the body do something. On the other hand, prayer helps the mind, which is also how homeopathy (another placebo effect) works.
    Medicine does not create healthy living cells that replace dead dying ones. Only the body does.
    The practice of medicine is as much an art as it is a science.

    Looking at it any other way is to project magical qualities on medicine that it doesn't possess.

    Asprine doesn't "cure" headaches. It just hits the snooz on a biological alarm.
    No hospital can "heal" a broken bone. No surgery can "cure" cancer.
    Medicine is limited to removing foreign bodies, moving body parts, hitting snooz on alarms, and giving the body what it lacks to heal itself.

    It isn't until you get into cyborg like application of "medicine" that you can even start to relate it to "healing".
    But a person with a prosthetic hearing device, or limbs is not "healed".

    anyway.. You clearly worship medicine, so just remember to listen to your Dr, and do whatever he says.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    I'm sure that the parents would have considered those risks before trying this on their children (and hopefully themselves one day). I haven't read any followup from these people as to how their failure affected them. Though recently a few articles have come out with parents who have lost children because they weren't vaccinated expressing deep regret.
    Thank God for vaccinations, I mean without them... how else would we have gotten aids? Or autism spectrum diseases?
    Don't worry, there is no study that shows that vaccines are related to anything bad at all. It is clearly they naysayers burden to show that poisons are poisonous. That heavy metals injected into children may be connected to heavy metal(not the music) poisoning symptoms.
    Never mind the fact that when they say "no study shows" it is akin to when the cigaret companies said the same thing. It is through lack of serious honest research. (no true un-vaccinated control group in any "double blind" research).

    Leave it as you like, I'm not interested in debating vaccinations.

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    That's not fair. Either you're saying that prayer doesn't really work (which is fine) or doesn't really work that way (which is also fine) or that their particular branch is non-sense (fine too) or that there is some other explanation. But I've given you a sample of a lot of people doing the same thing per their religion with little results. In fact, the last election was another good example with many more prayers, I'm sure!
    So, it is evidence that prayer works, as people prayed for Obama to win.
    Riiiiight?

    So then you must admit that prayer works. Unless of course you want to continue using weighted scales and use the election only as evidence regarding the prayers that were NOT answered (or were given the "no" answer which your current consideration does not distinguish).

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Well, the difference is that more prayer, more fervent prayer doesn't help. Whereas more science, understanding what went wrong, does help. So when a child of a Church couple dies, the rest of the congregation will use the excuses you brought up - they weren't sufficiently sinless enough (assuming that were a requirement) or didn't pray correctly. In science, we know the conditions and the actions that cause the death and we look at other cases to come to new conclusions and ideas. Medicine still doesn't really get a pass in the sense that they should be testing better but even then, if the root cause is down to lack of testing, then testing will be improved.

    Medicine's goal is actually to save lives; prayer is just wishing for something at best. So I am comparing both systems similarly, though maybe more clearly now.
    Unless you are willing to count every aids related death against the medical practice, then you are not willing to use equal scales. Unless you are willing to count every medical overdose, mistaken dose, malpractice, willful ignorance etc. Then you are not using equal scales.

    YOUR rule of measure was to be "unnecessary death". The "difference" you point out is irrelevant to what is actually occurring and your refusal to judge them evenly. I still don't see you admitting to ANY "unnecessary deaths" being attributed to the medical community. So you are still committing the fallacy of "special pleading".

    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    The avatar is an analogy. At some basic level there was a human being that claimed to be God. So there has to be a physical way for this to happen, for Jesus to be self-aware as God and also to perform the miracles. So the good thing about an Avatar, assuming Jesus grew up as a normal child, was that at some point, God, was able to insert new memories into his brain. Or, since God created this human, there may have been a bunch of brain cells that would awaken at a certain time. Either way, Jesus, had to have had some special input into his genes and brain that no other human has.

    What I am trying to speculate with you is how your scenario would work in the real world that we live in.
    I don't deny that it COULD work that way. I'm contending that it doesn't preclude what I have said, and that there is nothing that precludes or makes impossible the description offered by Christianity.


    The problem is your refusal to "speculate" that it occurred as stated, and instead insist that it must occur the way you WANT to understand it.


    Quote Originally Posted by JIM
    Perhaps we are talking past each other. I'm trying to understand Jesus, the human, in terms of science (fiction) that I can believe.
    Well, unless you are willing to consider other plausible alternatives, then your bias will continue to blind you.


    -----
    Quote Originally Posted by FREUND
    Off-topic: It's "tenet". Jesus did not own an apartment complex and we aren't discussing the people renting from Him.
    I don't know about everyone else, but that is what I was talking about *J*


    Quote Originally Posted by FREUND
    Examples of "modern" tribal dancing:

    1. Tens of thousands of spectators, most of whom are dressed in "tribal" colors and some of whom have their faces painted in said colors, wildly chanting and cheering on a group of men on a field wearing the same colors trying to get a oddly-shaped ball into their opposing team's "endzone".

    2. Thousands of spectators in an arena, wildly cheering and singing along and waving their hands in the air with a small group of people on a stage with musical instruments.

    3. College Fraternities. Nothing more needs to be said.

    Regardless, I'm not sure what "modern" prayer would look like. From what you have written, it seems you do. Care to elaborate?
    excellent point. Another example of uneven judging. Clearly that expression of emotion is not ridiculous or embarrassing at all.. because after all there was a football involved and the
    sports gods of Tom Brady and Bilicheat. (sorry, my football bias sneaks in... WHO DAT!)
    To serve man.

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    Re: Why all the obsequiousness God? He doesn't need it

    Quote Originally Posted by JimJones8934 View Post
    Yet, we are in turn indebted to Jesus; who requires us to follow his religion (or at least one of the many denominations), and the precepts of his Church (or rather Churches). A true friend would pay the debt and ask for nothing in return.
    In turn? We were already indebted. Jesus and God are one, remember? Plus, I think you're continuing to come at God with human social expectations. He isn't our peer.

    Hmm, this might be an example of a No-True Scotsman fallacy, where you will reject all the examples of actual Christian behavior as not being an exemplary representation, when in fact it is entirely a normal, popular and typical behavior of Christians. And I'm sure Jesus had some great prayers (I've only really known - or rather memorized - or rather had it drummed into me, the Lord's Prayer) which does seem to be self-serving with 'give us this day our daily bread'. So rather than actually working for a living, the prayer is seeking a freebie from God.
    Actually, it's nothing like a no-true scotsman, because there is a clear standard for what type of a prayer would be representative of Christianity, and that standard would be the scriptures. And as for your comments on the Lord's prayer, I mean no offense but I really don't know whether to take you seriously there. Who has interpretted it that way? Do you really think that kind of interpretation is consistent with Jesus' other sayings, or 1st Thessalonians which specifically mentioned people who stopped working and chided them for it?

    I think praying is like a meditation so your mind is cleared to focus on what is important; e.g. an exam, a performance or something. So I can see how that could work out well and also provide the reinforcement that prayer works.
    But you are talking about the side effects of what prayer is really about: having a close relationship with God.

    I would venture to say that the communication is always one directional, not just 'often' as you put it. And all you are doing is making excuses as to why there can't be a direct two-way communication.
    And how would you test that? Really, for that matter, what is the premise of this thread? I wonder from several different statements if you are simply set out to disprove Christianity, or you are set out to critique it for having outdated values, or if you are set out to prove Christianity is inconsistent.

    Furthermore, if you genuinely believed that there was an author of all good, possessive of endless intelligence and wherewithal, would you really feel great and blameless enough for Him to be answerable to you? I should think not. And I fail to see how my "making excuses" is an invalid way of reasoning why He wouldn't verbally answer prayers. People who bring up excuses as if they were an actual category of error in logic, don't seem to be accounting for all of the other excuses that seem to them to be perfectly valid and reasonable.

    Yet, you wish to return to a time before we had this dignity: to become naked and ignorant again once we have atoned that particular sin and spend the rest of eternity in heaven? As what? A mindless being? no thanks!
    And what makes you think that losing shame in one's own form is mindless, or that Adam was an ignoramus? You seem seriously misinformed about the nature of Christianity and it's account.

    The other difference is that we can guarantee that computers exist where 'eternal fate' is something we take on faith exists. This is Pascal's Wager; and to some extent when someone is changing their computer platform, that too is a bet. It is also trust that this new OS is better than the previous one. I think we have the same emotions and decision making processes going on - computers and religion are very similar given how vehemently some fight one side against another: in fact, they are called religious wars for a very good reason!
    Then I should let the person run right into traffic and die?

    Yes, he wants true sacrifice and worship and devotion. Exactly what cult leaders crave also. - to make their followers weak and obedient. To deny dissent and to hate questioning. Exactly the same traits that God and his religion has shown. So how exactly are these great qualities for a leader of men, indeed a leader of humanity, supposed to appeal for a modern human who is very much aware of this?
    Uggghhhh.... God is not a person. If this is the material I can expect, I guess I may as well give up. Toodles.
    There is no wealth like knowledge, no poverty like ignorance.
    Nahj ul-Balāgha by Ali bin Abu-Talib

 

 
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