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3 years ago  ::  Jan 15, 2012 - 11:02PM #1
theMadJW
Posts: 49

Since you condemn the Bible, do you believe in Evolution, and it's 'god' 'Natural Selection'?


r something else?

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3 years ago  ::  Jan 15, 2012 - 11:09PM #2
Namchuck
Posts: 11,881

Jan 15, 2012 -- 11:02PM, theMadJW wrote:


Since you condemn the Bible, do you believe in Evolution, and it's 'god' 'Natural Selection'?


r something else?




Who said I "condemn" the Bible? You must stop drawing false assumptions. I condemn only the patent misuse of it.


I love the Bible. I've studied it all my life. I just know that it is not what literalists and fundamentalist Christians say it is. I love it warts and all.


And in answer to your questions:


No, I do not 'believe' in evolution. The evidence for evolution is so overwhelming that it no more requires belief than the existence of the sun requires belief. There is also no doubt the natural selection is one of the prime engines of evolution, but there are also others.


I have literally dozens of Christian friends and acquaintances (Christians who neither lie nor bear false witness) whose faith is not threatened by the truth of evolution one little bit. Most of them view the fact of biological evolution as God's way of bringing about His purposes. While I don't go along with this view, they are at least dealing with the undeniable fact that man's true historical context is now undeniably established.

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3 years ago  ::  Jan 15, 2012 - 11:14PM #3
theMadJW
Posts: 49

So the Bible is just a smorgasbord, where you choose this, and reject that?

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3 years ago  ::  Jan 15, 2012 - 11:14PM #4
theMadJW
Posts: 49

(Back tomorrow)

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3 years ago  ::  Jan 15, 2012 - 11:20PM #5
Namchuck
Posts: 11,881

Jan 15, 2012 -- 11:14PM, theMadJW wrote:


So the Bible is just a smorgasbord, where you choose this, and reject that?




Christian churches, denominations, and sects, without exception treat the Bible as a smorgasbord all the time. But it's not difficult to understand why this should be the case.


The Bible is simply an extraordinary library of books - especially as literature in its King James robes - eventually composed from oral traditions that represents the way the ancient Israelites attempted to come to grips with the nature of the world and their place within it. Other cultures were doing exactly the same kind of thing, as their own mythical writings show.


The books of the Bible reflect the understanding of the time they were composed, an understanding woven into myths, stories, and legends in order, largely, to give their society a story to live by and to enable those stories to be conveyed to succeeding generations. Each generation added their own shifting understandings to it, remoulding the myths by giving them a different emphasis.


Consequently, we shouldn't be surprised that it contains endless inconsistencies and contradictions. It is exactly what we'd expect from a purely human set of documents. This is also why it lends itself so easily to being treated as a "smorgasbord", and every sect, denomination, and movement has, I repeat, has relished in doing just that.


One can also see how its concept of God has evolved over time. It essentially starts out with a bad tempered and emotionally erratic desert God whose own shifting and sometimes parlous passions reflect the tribal nature of life at the time, but who - by the time of the New Testament - has become a far more avuncular figure. Even from the pulpit today, one notices how God has become decidedly green and in touch with his feminine side.


Thus, they are completely insupportable contentions those which claim that the Bible is "divinely inspired", or that one is obliged to take its stories literally. To so treat the Bible is to open it up to deserving scorn. As I've written elsewhere, if the Bible were really the work of a perfect and loving God, it would be obviously superlative in every respect to anything that could be conceived by human intellect alone. It would be accurate, concise, clear, and consistent throughout. There is nothing more obvious that it is far from any of these.


I think Mark Twain summed the Bible up best:


"The Bible is full of interest. It has some noble poetry in it; and some clever fables; and some blood-drenched history; and some good morals; and a wealth of obscenity; and upwards of a thousand lies." - Mark Twain, 'Letters From The Earth'






 

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3 years ago  ::  Jan 16, 2012 - 12:11PM #6
theMadJW
Posts: 49

Please elaborate- one 'contradiction' at a time, please.


So you feel they LIED? That they made all their encounters with God and Christ up?

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3 years ago  ::  Jan 17, 2012 - 2:23AM #7
Namchuck
Posts: 11,881

Jan 16, 2012 -- 12:11PM, theMadJW wrote:


Please elaborate- one 'contradiction' at a time, please.


So you feel they LIED? That they made all their encounters with God and Christ up?




Are Mormons, Baptists, Episcopalians, Christadelphians, Seventh Day Adventists, and Roman Catholics, etc, lying or making things up when they speak of encounters with God and Christ?


While I wouldn't suggest that this is the case, there is compelling explanations from the neuro and cognitive science's to explain why such phenomenon occur.


Belief has a marvelous capacity to beget its own experience, which is why a devout Hindu can experience his gods, the Muslim his particular deity, the Jew his own, and the Christian his God, and so on.


                                       #######################


"Please elaborate - one contradiction at a time, please."


How many will it require to prove my point, as there are literally hundreds to choose from?


Take a particularly glaring one from the first two chapters of the very first book of the Bible, the Book of Genesis:


Genesis 1, God creates sequentially in six days, moving from light to the division of waters and firmament, to land and plants, to the sun and moon, and finally to animal life of increasing complexity. On the sixth day he creates human beings, both male and female together: "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him, male and female created he them."


In Genesis II, God creates the earth and heavens and then makes a man "of the dust of the ground." He then creates plants and animals, bringing all the beasts to Adam and granting the first man naming rights. But Adam is lonely, so God creates a female companion from one of his ribs: "And the Lord God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept; and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh thereof; and the rib, which the Lord God had taken from man, made he the woman, and he brought her unto the man. And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman."


Our traditional reading conflates these two stories, taking the basic sequence, with humans last, from Genesis 1, but borrowing the rib scenario for the subsequent creation of Eve from Genesis II. 


People are often surprised when I point out this contradiction and conflation.


As I said, there are literally hundreds more, but even the contradictions are outnumbered by the inconsistencies in the Bible, just as one would expect from purely human documents.




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3 years ago  ::  Jan 17, 2012 - 10:27AM #8
JRT
Posts: 340

Namchuck


 


You and I are in perfect agreement re the bible. I approach the bible much like a prospector approaches his claim. I search for the gleaming nuggets of wisdom and insight but I am prepared to have to shift a lot of rubble in order to find them.


 


 


I sometimes think that the problem lies in how we view God. We are individual personalities interested in other persons and that is how we envision God. We see God as interested in us as well. Perhaps individual human life and all its evil and suffering is of no interest to God. Perhaps God is more interested in planets or stars or galaxies and life is just an accidental consequence of it all. I am coming to think of God as the 'fabric of nature' in which we 'live, move and have our being' and a God that is impersonal and yet at least mildly benevolent. To craft a metaphor, think of God as the sun, impersonal and yet radiating heat. The planets exist only as a consequence of the sun's presence and life on at least one of those planets exists only as a consequence of the sun's warmth. The sun didn't do this deliberately but only because of its nature. We as human life forms are a consequence too. Think of God's love for creation as analagous to the warmth broadcast by the sun --- impersonal but life giving and even life transforming. A few years ago I composed a prayer to try to express these thoughts:



"As the sunflower turns its face to the radiance of the sun


So do we turn our souls to the radiance of God's love.


May that love transform and energize our beings


So that we may be able to see the spark of divinity


That exists within every human being


Even the most depraved or indifferent.


May we always deal with each other in peace


And in hope


And in LOVE.


So be it."


 

the floggings will continue until morale improves
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3 years ago  ::  Jan 17, 2012 - 2:47PM #9
trudyblaze
Posts: 3

Of all religious books ever written, coupled with their story of creation, the Bible has been the
most consistent,but you donot see this cos its truth has been hidden from you. The truth behind
every word in the Bible can only be understood by the help of the Holyspirit,not by looking at it
literally.

Moderated by world citizen on Feb 05, 2012 - 12:08PM
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3 years ago  ::  Jan 17, 2012 - 4:37PM #10
theMadJW
Posts: 49

The Bible BEGINS with giving the ONLY credible explanation as to how Life began.


There's FAR more- bt I await the denial...

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