I come from a very religious Christian family, I've read the bible. I've also read the Qur'an, the Tanakh, and the Dhammapada. I have done research on many religions. I have homosexual friends. I have Atheist friends, Christian friends, Pagan friends and Agnostic friends. They are good people and shouldn't be judged by a certain kind of followers.
I am an Atheist because I HAVE known God's word, as well as other god's words. I have prayed to God to show me that he does exist, and to change my mind about my beliefs. Since then I have come to accept the fact that it is not in my character to believe in higher beings. This was not a choice for me. I cant help the fact that I analyze and question everything. It's in my nature.
That being said, after reading the bible I know that there is a lot of issues that God takes a stand against that I find intolerant and ridiculous.
The only thing I ask of anyone, is that they judge me based on how well they know me. Nothing more. How could you know my thoughts? My morals? My Philosophies?
Mike; in my opinion, I don't think your approach is going to change the guys mind about anything. though it's pretty much a given that someone who is a devout christian probably wont change their mind in the end anyway.
"Since hell doesn't exist, everbody's understanding of hell is a misunderstanding."
If that is the case then your understanding of Hell being non-existant is a misunderstanding.
"Nothing wrong with saying you can't know god's ways, there ain't no god's ways."
I'm confused. Are you a believer or an atheist? I recommend using proper grammar so people have a clear understanding of what you're talking about. "There ain't no god's ways." is a double-negative, which means you think there are God's ways. I may be nit-picking, but I don't know you so I can't just make assumptions about your beliefs.
"Then why do you?
I don't. Nor did I claim I do. If you actually read all of what I wrote then you will see that I separate myself from those who do believe in predestination by saying it is "self defeating on their part". I didn't say our part. I don't believe in predestination, at least not in the Calvinistic teaching. You should probably be more thorough in your reading of someone's comments before you begin your critique and make yourself out as a fool.
Jon is correct. Your approach is one that gives atheists a bad name. That's not to say that some Christians don't do the same thing, but it is not helpful to you, to me, or to anyone else.
I didn't come here to preach, or witness. I came to discuss, and I don't know why you think otherwise.
Couldn't have said it better, or referenced better reading material myself Adriana..... Many religious people just don't understand or just won't admit how very temporary this all is. No religious person in the world can tell me, fully believing themselves, that if they were born 5000 years ago in Egypt, that they would believe what they believe today because it is the only truth, the only way, the light --- furthermore, that believing that their religion is the real truth, and a thing revealed to them and the world only recently, is not at the very least a set-up by their god to pick and choose who gets salvation. God doesn't seem to like the elders of the Earth very much in that case, his own claimed children; or were they just a group of testers...guinea pigs on how to rule efficiently? His form of death penalties are peculiarly evil then...for just a simple wipe clean and start over. It makes me feel ridiculous to speculate on. Religious logic leads down ludicrous paths to say the least.
I can't be 100% sure that my version of Hell, which is actually not my own version, it is that of the Catholic Church's, is correct. This is one of those things where faith comes in to play. You're right, other religions do have their own version of hell, but only one can be right.
I am not Catholic only because I was born Catholic. It is true that I was born Catholic, but I went through a tough time a few years back questioning my faith. That questioning made me do some research to find some answers and they led me back to the Catholic Church. Now it may be true that most people follow the religion of their parents, but that argument can be used both ways. There are probably a lot of non-believers who were raised by non-believing parents.
I know several people, including my three brothers, who are no longer practicing Catholics, but I also know some people who were not raised as believers but have come to believe. Again, it works both ways.
Yes, born to a Catholic family... with no knowledge at all of what you believe, and conditioned into to your current beliefs by your parents.
Furthermore, I subscribe to Darwin's ideas on this; any child under a certain age has no concept of their views on this world and the complexity of what eternity means, what death means, what a supernatural thing actually is, or what it means to believe in a supernatural idea. It is hard for me to watch my friends and family make two year olds sit and close their eyes and speak to a deity to thank them for food their mothers and fathers busted their butts to earn. They can little more than comprehend and point to body parts, but they are supposedly really speaking to someone when doing this? Really giving thanks? I believe this is irresponsible and confusing to say the least.
Faith won't save you if you're wrong and the Islams are right.
Also, more often than not, atheists come out of religious homes and "lose" their faith on their own. I questioned my faith, like you did, when I was 19 and then came back to Christianity. It was actually really scary to be at odds with my indoctrination, so it was easy to fall back into the safe arms of something familiar (the religion I had been raised in). It's pretty common for people to venture out of their religion and come running back to it.
But then, at 24, I started asking different questions. After being a very faithful servant, I realized there were an awful lot of people with vastly different opinions and they all thought they were right. I didn't want to feel too secure that I was one of the lucky ones that stumbled across the "right" version. And wow... realizing they were ALL wrong was a trip. A painful, isolating trip. I've always wanted the truth, but I had no idea what I'd lose once I found it. Atheists don't choose to be atheist; they are simply unable to deny reality anymore.
An aside, but Jesus never ever once in the bible claims he is dying for our sins.
I hear that statement fairly often, but in Matt 26:28 (KJV) when Jeebus is telling everyone to cannibalize him before he gets murderized and everyone is totally cool with that as dinner convo, he says "For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins."
And in the passage right after, he mentions there will be booze in heaven! Woot!!!
I'm sure the meaning behind that can probably be disputed, like pretty much every other passage in the Bible, but that's one of the passages thrown at me as a kid when I asked how we knew Jesus died for our sins and why we had to symbolically drink Jesus juice and eat his meat (giggity). There was never a time I didn't think that was just effin weird.
(AHHH Now I'm having "Oh God, the eternal father..." sacrament blessing flashbacks after 15 years. Any ex-Mormons in the house?)
in Mark 9:47–48 Jesus warns us, "[I]t is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into hell, where the worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched."
From the first website you referenced. Does this statement suggest that we should follow god blindly rather than walk willingly into a supposed hell? From his track record, I might just throw my lot in with satan and his little pixies; satan has killed far less people than this personal god has.
I agree completely. Ha! They dont understand how hypocritcial they are when they say that stalin and hitler were atheists and killed in the name of atheism. If we think thusly of them, it is a masterful act to discretely draw attention else where from the genocide in the OT and more towards the nicer stuff in the cultish NT. LOL!