Inquiring Christians want to know.... What do you think about us?...and Why?

I really want Christians to HEAR what YOU think of them....good, bad, or ugly.

Brief stories and examples would be most helpful for them to understand your perspective.

Since most Christians won't visit ThinkAtheist to read it, please submit your comments via this site: http://tinyurl.com/245dov5. If you don't use my site...that's fine too...it will just take me longer to read through and summarize the points.

Some disclaimers:

I am not here to attempt to save your soul or preach to you. I'm not here to set you up or attempt to trap you. I don't have any ulterior motives.

My mission is to help Christians live what we preach. Among other things...to love one another...and that includes atheists and non-believers. I want us to coexist. We can't do that if Christians are adding fuel to the fire and visa versa. We must seek to understand and respect each other if we are to coexist in peace.

Again, I'm not trying to change YOU...I'm trying to change Christians...for everyone's benefit.

Tags: Christianity, Christians, of, opinions

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Unlike some of them you have met...and your minister conversation, I have no desire to beat anyone over the head with a "going to hell" attitude. How about we just treat each other with love and respect and let the chips fall where they may.

No religion, including Christianity, should ever have to scare people into the doors. And if we can't LOVE people into the doors...then whoever is attempting to do the scaring really doesn't GET the faith at all. I'd love to have that conversation with the minister. But like other people have said in this discussion, one, two, or a thousand bad eggs can't define a group....on either side.

Thanks for your comment Gerald. I appreciate it.
Gerald raises a good point - don't use Pascal's wager on atheists. It will either piss them off because it smacks heavily of threatening them with hell, or it will piss them off because as an argument it fails at every level and gets really old really fast.
Well, to my discredit, I'd never heard of pascal's wager. It's quite the opposite of a threat in my mind. I'm quite happy for you. If you live a great life and then you die, and that's all there is...GREAT! If I live a great life and then I die...then Great. Even better for me if there IS an afterlife.

I may be an unorthodox Christian for saying that. I just know from my own personal experience that no one can argue an atheist into believing. So me, a preacher, or anyone else attempting to "hell" you into believing is just taking a very uninformed and futile approach.

When I was an atheist...trust me...I was completely happy. Now that I'm a Christian...I'm still completely happy. I just believe in something bigger than me or this world that also gives special meaning to my life....IN THIS LIFE... and as our faith believes...beyond.

Peace.
George Bernard Shaw: "The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact that a drunken man is happier than a sober one. The happiness of credulity is a cheap and dangerous quality."
Pascal's wager is the claim that it is safer to believe, because if you believe and there is no god you lose nothing in the end, and if there is a god you gain eternal afterlife and evade eternal torture.
The problems are myriad here - the wager supposes that there is only a chance of the Christian god being real, ignoring every single other god, most of whom are as jealos as Yahwe, it ignores the sum of humanity's knowledge which strongly implies there is no god, it supposes that god is so dim that he can't tell the difference between genuine belief and lip service to save my own ass etc. etc.

Further reading here, I can promise you that you will be much better recieved among atheists if you check Pascal's wager at the door.
Thanks for the education on Pascal's wager. I read the link too. Unlike the wager suggests, I don't believe in God because the alternative is so undesirable or because I have nothing to lose by believing...and everything to gain. I believe because God intervened in my life (my evidence)...so it's not so much a wager as it is a belief based on actual experience.

Either way, thanks for helping me understand your perspective on the misuse of pascals wager with atheists. I'll be sharing that within the Christian community for sure.
I believe that this is adequately summed up by the following quote:

"The fact that a believer is happier than a skeptic is no more to the point than the fact than a drunken man is happier than a sober one"
-George Bernard Shaw
The reason you don't understand is because it's illogical, irrational, unreasonable, and impossible.
W.C.,
The reason there is no solid definition of god, is because if there were, it could be disprovable. Theists hide behind the foggy veil of 'God is different for everyone' because that keeps them safe from being proven wrong. I believe most theists know they're wrong (otherwise, why cry at funerals?) subconsciously, but won't admit it to themselves because they've invested too much of their lives into it to let go easily.

~Maggie
It hopeless of course...as you know. But I'm enjoying the dialog. fun!

True Christian theologists have figured out this long ago. (although just as in any faith, or secular intellectual discussion...there are often disagreements and opposing opinions).

But, I believe the theological consensus definition (which sadly still won't help you prove or disprove it)...is that God is both in and outside of this universe...as he would have to be by definition. There was NO inside before he created it...so by definition..he is outside it. When he created it...there is now an "inside the universe" to be discussed. And he is also inside it. (those that believe he's NOT also inside it are called Deists...not Theists).

He isn't matter...he created matter. But does it matter? (pun...sorry).

In summary, christian scholars have figured this stuff out...but alas...to get it, you still have to start with a basic belief, understanding, or open mind about the possibility of a God. If you don't, then no amount of scholarly work will make a hill of beans to you. If you start every inquiry with not believing in the possibility of a God, then you've already ruled out the one answer that could explain it all.

Did that help our cause? I fear not.
Another problem here is that Christians seem to assume that the idea of God is a simple one and therefore Occam's razor is on their side in "origin of the universe" arguments.

It isn't. If we accept the existance of God, it raises so much questions about things that we have working explanation for that we may as well chuck the whole of modern science out the window. It's like seeing a guy shooting another guy and then saying that the most simple and reasonable explanation for how one of them wound up with a bullet between the lungs that previously occupied the magazine in the other guy's gun is that the reptilian overlords contracted the fairy folk of Mercury to steal the Alpha Centaurans space-time vortex machine and use it to move one of the bullets from the gun to a particle accelerator in a paralel universe, where it was accelerated to the precise speed of a bullet coming from a gun and then another inter-dimensional vortex was created to allow the bullet to return to our universe so that it hit the guy standing in front of the gun in such a way as to give the impression that the bullet was shot form the gun. And anyone who tries to explain it with mechanics is an arrogant prick who thinks he knows everything about everything.

That's what every single theist argument about god's involvement in the origin of the universe sounds like to me.
Technically, Deists are a subset of Theists. To be a theist just means that you believe in a deity, it does not have to be a deity that actively exists in our universe or intervenes in it.

If a deity exists within our universe, acting upon it, then we should be able to detect that. Even if we cannot detect the deity itself, we could detect the effect that it has on other things.

Most atheists don't reject the possibility of a god. We simply state that the evidence for a god is lacking. If I was prevented with convincing evidence for the existence of a god, I would change my mind and believe that a god exists. (Note this doesn't mean that I would worship said god, that would depend on the nature of the deity in question)

I don't believe in a god for the same reason that I don't believe in unicorns, leprechauns, and mole men. No evidence. If a little man slide down a rainbow to my front door tomorrow with a pot of gold, my opinion may change on leprechauns. Likewise, given sufficient evidence for a deity, my opinion on that would change as well.

Any evidence that requires you to already believe in order to accept it, is not evidence but simply an aspect of confirmation bias.

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