Beliefs News

Why most people leave religion? They just ‘stop believing’

Bad news for organized religion: A majority of the religiously unaffiliated -- the so-called "nones" -- say they fell away from faith not because of any negative experience, but because they "stopped believing," usually before the age of 30.

(RNS) It’s bad news for organized religion: A majority of the religiously unaffiliated — the so-called “nones” — say they fell away from faith not because of any negative experience, but because they “stopped believing,” usually before the age of 30.

Gloomier still for religion is this — nones now make up 25 percent of the American population, making them the single largest “faith group” in the U.S., ahead of Catholics (21 percent) and white evangelicals (16 percent).

And only a fraction — seven percent — say they are looking for a religion to belong to at all.

Those are among the more salient findings of a new study of the religiously unaffiliated conducted by the Public Religion Research Institute.

"More Young Adults are Unaffiliated than in the Past." Graphic courtesy of PRRI

“More Young Adults are Unaffiliated than in the Past.” Graphic courtesy of PRRI

The study challenges the assumption that the unaffiliated are leaving religion because they are offended by religious institutions’ treatment of gay and lesbian people or clergy sex abuse scandals, said Daniel Cox, PRRI’s research director.

“Those things matter but they are dwarfed by this central idea that people no longer believe in religious teachings,” he said.


READ: The ‘nones’ are more numerous than you think, and they aren’t going to the polls


Even the study’s title is a downer for the devoted — “Exodus: Why Americans are Leaving Religion — and Why They Are Unlikely to Come Back.” Here are some of the central findings of the survey of 2,201 adults that was conducted in late July and early August and has a margin of error of plus or minus 2.5 percentage points.

  • Only 18 percent of nones say “religion is important in their lives,” and only 40 percent say they are “moderately spiritual.” The majority of the unaffiliated — 53 percent — describe themselves as neither religious nor spiritual.
  • Nones do not generally leave religion due to negative experiences. Sixty percent said they simply “stopped believing” in their childhood religion, while 32 percent cited their family’s lack of religious commitment. Less than a third — 29 percent — said negative religious teachings about gays and lesbians was important to why they left their childhood religion and only 19 percent cited the clergy sex-abuse crisis.
  • A majority of nones still believe in God — 22 percent say God is a “person,” while 37 percent see God as “an impersonal force.”
  • One in five nones say a belief in God is “necessary” to morality.

But the study, released Thursday (Sept. 22), is full of interesting contradictions, too. While only one-fifth of all nones say morality is fostered by belief in God, one in three believes children should be raised in a religion to learn “good values.”

And while one third of all nones say they do not believe in God, only a fraction — 13 percent — accept the label “atheist.”

“There is still stigma attached to the word ‘atheist,'” Cox said. “I think there is a disinclination to claim the label if they are nonbelievers who just don’t think about religion all that often.”

"Three Subgroups Within the Religiously Unaffiliated." Graphic courtesy of PRRI

“Three Subgroups Within the Religiously Unaffiliated.” Graphic courtesy of PRRI

The study attempts to further define nones by dividing them into three subgroups — the “Rejectionists,” the “Apatheists” and the “Unattached Believers.”

The Rejectionists are the largest group, at 58 percent of all nones, and agree that religion is “not important” in their lives and “does more harm than good.” Apatheists — 22 percent — say religion is not important to them, but isn’t harmful to society, while Unattached Believers — 18 percent — say religion is personally important to them.

"Reasons for Leaving Religion." Graphic courtesy of PRRI

“Reasons for Leaving Religion.” Graphic courtesy of PRRI

None of these findings surprise Elizabeth Drescher, a Santa Clara University adjunct professor. In researching her book “Choosing Our Religion: The Spiritual Lives of America’s Nones,” Drescher found the religiously unaffiliated seldom mentioned negative experience with religion.

“The way religious education and formation is set up in mainline and Catholic churches parallels high school,” she said. “Once you graduate from it, you got it. You know, don’t be a jerk, do unto others, and nones just kind of get bored with it and move on.”

But what do they move on to? Katherine Ozment is the author of “Grace Without God: The Search for Meaning, Purpose and Belonging in a Secular Age” and a none who simply drifted away from her childhood Presbyterianism.

“It’s not that nones don’t believe in God, it’s that they don’t believe in religious teachings,” she said. “They have detached completely from religion and are finding meaning in their jobs, in raising kids, in their communities, in nature.”

But many, she said, still want a sense of community they once found in church. She believes that’s behind the fast and recent rise of so-called “atheist churches” like Sunday Assembly and Oasis, which now have branches across the U.S. and in several countries.


READ: Do atheists need their own ‘church’? Sunday Assembly prompts controversy


“I think there are a lot of nones who miss singing in the choir, who would love to go into a building and hear a moving speech, but the minute someone starts talking about the Bible they check out,” she said. “It no longer feels applicable to them. That’s a big challenge to the church.”

Ed Stetzer, the executive director of the Billy Graham Center for Evangelism at Wheaton College and an expert on evangelicals and leadership, agrees.

While evangelicals know how to appeal to nominal Christians — those who still identify as Christians but don’t practice — they do not have the same success relating to the nones, he said. “So I think ultimately there will have to be some retraining about what it means to reach secular people.”

Stetzer takes heart from the study’s finding that more than half of all nones say they believe in some concept of God.

“That’s where the entree is,” he said. “There is still an awareness that there is a God and the Christian’s job is now to explain who that God is and what he has done for them.”

The PRRI poll, conducted in partnership with Religion News Service, was funded by the Henry Luce Foundation and the Stiefel Freethought Foundation.

About the author

Kimberly Winston

Kimberly Winston is a freelance religion reporter based in the San Francisco Bay Area.

807 Comments

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  • You may want to re-read the article, you missed something there.

    Those mixed poll results mean that YOUR side will have to work just as hard as MY side will have to work, if either of our respective sides have any intention of ultimately winning over the “Nones.”

  • Stopped believing at 30. I just got tired of it. Life blessings and struggles for the past 25 years has been so much easier and simpler now without it. Never going back! I don’t have to be “reached”, don’t have to be “won” over to a side, but if you want to waste a colossal amount of time go ahead.

  • Or they accept that they’ve never really believed at all, and found comfort in the growing consensus that it’s okay NOT to…

  • My broad experience of adults leaving the church over the past 45 years, affirms that those this article labels “unattached believers” is the end result of individuals disconnecting from organized religion. For my generation, that time in one’s early-to-mid 40’s began lots of deep questioning and the start of a mid-life transition for both sexes, They question the church’s beliefs about everything–including their marriage. It’s also a time of experimentation, and some even go on to experiment with other sexual partners. If they don’t divorce, they come to miss the accumulated friendship and familiarity. In those cases the marriage ends up stronger as both parties re-choose each other after some testing, as opposed to their original marriage because of their parents pushed them to “make it all legal in front of clergy.”

    Most have left the church because of politics or issues of irrevelance, but they maintain their own framework of operational values in their lives. They usually maintain an active belief in God, and an active prayer life. Some will get hooked up with informal worship groups in homes, but don’t see a need to affiliate with a (usually large) church institution and help pay the freight on buildings, multiple pastors and programs for youth that don’t fit their needs anymore.

  • I think this scripture agrees with you Atheist:
    1 John 2: 19 These people left our churches, but they never really belonged with us; otherwise they would have stayed with us. When they left, it proved that they did not belong with us.

  • But many of us, myself included, truly did believe. Many of the nones still do, in fact – they just don’t like Churches.

  • No True Scotsman. Convenient, but not true.

    I believed for decades before slowly coming to the realization that there is no evidence for gods. Not Yahweh or Thor or Zeus or any other, no matter how comforting belief might be. I wasn’t aware of atheists until after I stopped believing.

  • I did preface it with “or”. I hope it didn’t appear I was discounting situations like yours, but I thought it prudent to be inclusive of any who’d followed my own path…

  • Is there some way to distinguish those who belong with your church from those who don’t in advance…?

  • There is a world of difference between a belief in god and what religion says about god. At a local PCUSA church, I heard the minister talk about communicating God’s will and word in “this sinful and broken world.” My immediate response? If the world is sinful and broken, if these are everywhere, how do you know you’re speaking the word of god? How do you know that the being you believe to be god is god? How do you know he’s telling you the truth? One could certainly posit that religion’s behavior for the past 2000 years in the west– pogroms, anti-Semitism, homobigotry, witch burnings, religious wars, slavery, segregation, Christian vs. Christian vs. Jew vs Muslim vs Muslim– argues against any reliable connection with god, assuming there is such a being. You have only the bible’s word for it, and that book is notoriously immoral in so many ways.

    Atheism isn’t really a statement about god, therefore, it is a statement about religion. I suspect even Athiest Max would agree with that statement more readily than he agrees with the statement that Atheism=certainty. The statement “I believe there is no God” is not a statement of fact, but of belief.
    It doesn’t mean the same thing as saying “I have no belief there is no god.”, which is a factual statement as well as a statement about evidence.

  • I can’t find much there to quarrel with, other than perhaps:

    “Atheism isn’t really a statement about god, therefore, it is a statement about religion.”

    I think it’s a statement about myself: I’m not a theist, ergo, I am an atheist…

  • But if I could present you with incontrovertible evidence that there is a god, would you be willing to consider it?

  • No kidding. But it’s nice that we have these insightful articles to read. This is like a spoof from The Onion. Sorry, I’ve got the giggles.

  • Well, I would say, “God’s church”, as that is the church that counts. And, since we have all sinned and fallen short at one time or another, I would say it would be difficult to distinguish, unless they are teaching against the Lord’s word and defiling the Lord’s name. What do you think?
    A few hints:
    Philippians 3;19
    New International Version
Their destiny is destruction, their god is their stomach, and their glory is in their shame. Their mind is set on earthly things.

    James 4:4New International Version (NIV)
    4 You adulterous people,[a] don’t you know that friendship with the world means enmity against God? Therefore, anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God.

    1 John 4:1-6International Standard Version (ISV)
    Test What People Say
    1 John 4 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world. 2 By this you know the Spirit of God: every spirit that confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, 3 and every spirit that does not confess Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you heard was coming and now is in the world already. 4 Little children, you are from God and have overcome them, for he who is in you is greater than he who is in the world.5 They are from the world; therefore they speak from the world, and the world listens to them. 6 We are from God. Whoever knows God listens to us; whoever is not from God does not listen to us. By this we know the Spirit of truth and the spirit of error.

    “Unto the pure all things are pure: but unto them that are defiled and unbelieving is nothing pure; but even their mind and conscience is defiled. They profess that they know God; but in works they deny him, being abominable, and disobedient, and unto every good work reprobate.” Titus 1:15&16.

    Jude 1:17-19King James Version (KJV)
    17 But, beloved, remember ye the words which were spoken before of the apostles of our Lord Jesus Christ;
    18 How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts.
    19 These be they who separate themselves, sensual, having not the Spirit.

  • I think that if we cannot distinguish them ahead of time, that 1 John 2:19 becomes something of a deepity, seemingly reducible to something like:

    People belong in our church. Until they don’t…

  • If you truly believe, why would you deny the Lord and what He taught? Belief entails having a relationship with Jesus. Would you just walk away from a friend who loves you, died for you, and helps you if you had a relationship with Him? Christians have a relationship with Jesus. He knows His and they will not receive the condemnation of “away from Me, I never knew you.” (Those dreadful words)
    What do you think?

  • You needn’t capitalize “atheist”. ‘Atheism’ is a common noun, not a proper noun, so in English it should not normally be capitalized (unless it is at the beginning of a sentence).

  • Usually, the assemblies have some sort of process to try to distinguish believers from false ones. I think you should probably know the process for someone who is transgressing God’s word. You speak to him privately, then take another, then a group, then you release the person to satan. Right?

  • Also the nones are having children and without having a faith pressed on them early they will probably not ascribe to a faith when they get older.
    There are also a lot of closeted Atheists here in the bible belt, they’re just afraid to come out cause they don’t want friends and families to turn their backs.

  • Apparently the full name is “Stupid Atheist” (which I find very amusing). I feel people should be addressed as they identify themselves.

  • “That’s where the entree is,” he said. “There is still an awareness that there is a God and the Christian’s job is now to explain who that God is and what he has done for them.”

    Except for the fact that Christians have zero empirical evidence that their religion and definition of god is true. Sorry Mr. Stetzer – you are going to continue bleeding believers, the trend is not going to reverse and it is only a matter of time before Christian influence declines to almost nothing.

    I do not believe religion will die out in our species – but the abundant availability of knowledge (mainly via the internet) is going to continue to push people out of their childhood religious indoctrination.

  • Christians have over 66 books of proof that God exists – plus innumerable references that support His existence. What proof do you have that He doesn’t exist? Thanks.

  • We shall never diminish the hope which we rest upon; the redemption of our bodies, namely our soul at the transfiguration. We remain truly confident, as having no doubt and continue in the Way.

  • The burden of proof lies with the believer who is making a truth claim – not someone who is making no empirical claim. I do not claim that a god does not exist, I merely see no evidence to support the existence of such a being.

    66 books? Really – those books filled with errors, contradictions and outright fabrications? That is nowhere close to empirical evidence.

    Please – you will have to do much better than that.

    Cheers.

  • Then there is always: Matthew 7:15Beware of false prophets. They come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravenous wolves. 16By their fruit you will recognize them. Are grapes gathered from thornbushes, or figs from thistles?…” I think those are intentional deceivers.

  • No you did not – a bunch of books written by men and full of errors is not proof.

    And once again, since you cannot seem to grasp the concept, the burden of proof is yours.

    Here is a little example. I have an invisible aardvark that travels with me everywhere. He talks to me and gives me advice – he is my best friend. But I am the only one who can see or hear him. But he is real – I talk to him and see him everyday.

    Prove he does not exist. I will not hold my breath…

  • Re: false prophets, et al, maybe my core question comes down to this (and forgive me if we’ve had this conversation, I correspond with a lot of people; and mods, if this drifts too far afield, put the boot to my neck):

    God presumably bestowed us with our faculties, including our ability to discern good from evil, yes? I ask because I’m often told that, without God, we could not know right from wrong, which would seem to be central to the issue of false prophecy…

  • You didn’t say I needed to convince you. You asked for proof. I gave you tons of it. Now, I’d like to see yours. Thanks.

  • Atheism is not a belief, it is a lack of belief. Sorry, not going to let you use that as a loophole. And the “certainty” comes in degrees. I am not certain that god doesn’t exist, and I am not certain that unicorn farts smell of marshmallows — I think the likelihood of either is about equal. Many of those that identify as atheist, and many who identify as none, will be very deep in their unbelief and incredulity.
    In modern parlance, “anti-theism” is a statement about religion. This survey actually asks people’s attitudes towards religion rather than god, so there is no need to speculate. What this survey didn’t ask was about money and the church which is always an interesting discussion to have because, I have met many that are turned off by the church who they see as just another business. It is also an worrying topic for the church because they are just another business, and without bums-on-seats they have to start closing branches of their franchise.

  • No you did not – the Bible is not proof no matter haw much you think it is. It has no more authority than any other religious text. It is a collection of books written by men that encourage things like genocide, condones slavery – even giving you instructions on how to beat your slave so you do not harm his value.

    It is a book that both states that when you die, you are gone:

    “For that which befalleth the sons of men befalleth beasts; even one thing befalleth them: as the one dieth, so dieth the other; yea, they have all one breath; so that a man hath no preeminence above a beast. Ecclesiastes 3:19”

    And then tells you you have eternal life!

    So, your so called “Holy Bible” is nothing more than the writings of primitive man. I could list contradiction and error for pages and pages of text – but I am not. So answer this for me…if the Bible is the inspired word of God, why was he not powerful enough to make sure it was correct? Should he not make sure his word is preserved intact?

    And you evaded my question – please prove my aardvark does not exist. His name is Andy. Surely you can prove that such a ridiculous animal does not exist! That should be simply for you.

    So come on – prove Andy is a figment of my imagination – just like your god is a figment of yours.

    I am flatly stating that you cannot – no matter how hard you try, you are incapable of doing it.

  • And OK – I will play your little game.

    Give me a precise list of your god’s attributes? Does intervene in the world? Is he all knowing? Is he all loving?

    Define your god precisely and I will disprove your god.

  • Jeffery is absolutely right. Religion relies on indoctrination of children. Aside from that it can only prey on the weak, looking for people who are having a tough time and convincing them that an invisible man in the sky is a lifeline. But to do that they need to have a presence in the community. When people aren’t going to church, they are not stuffing cash in the collection box and before you know it the church is worrying more about paying wages and fixing the roof than reaching out to the nones. Excuse the mixed metaphor, but once somebody says the emperor has no clothes, you can’t put that genie back in the bottle. America will go the same way as North Western Europe. Two generations from now, over 50% of the population will be atheist/none.

  • To be fair, the bible is evidence. But when you read the wicked book with a critical eye, it serves as better evidence against god than for it. God’s endorsement of slavery springs to mind.

  • That is convenient scripture but it is what I call a cop out scripture. There are thousands of people who are committed Christians, committed evangelicals, committed Catholics and they have stopped believing. The writer of First John had no way to explain it so he found a way to cop out of explaining it by saying, they went out from us because they weren’t of us. As the church lady says, how convenient. It’s a claim but it’s not the truth. It’s a useless scripture, not truth.

  • Actually, no they don’t have a way to distinguish false prophets. Churches never do. They just Trot out, they went out from us because they were not of us. That gives them a good reason to ignore the person that just left them for whatever reason. And at that point he becomes the immediate enemy, a tool of Satan. They don’t listen to him, they do not talk to him, and they pay no attention to what he has to say. After all he went out from us but he was not of us. Doesn’t matter if he was a strong Soul winner and a great Bible teacher and a leader in the church. He wasn’t of us, so he did not know God. Been there, done that, I’ve heard it all.

  • As I said elsewhere, if you have a relationship with someone, and you love them, they love you and loved you enough to die for you, plus they help you, heal you and guide you, are you really going to leave that relationship? If so, what do you want in a relationship?

  • I showed proof. There are many references to witnesses within….just because you think it isn’t proof, proves really, nothing.

  • I see you do not understand the Bible either….but, I’m waiting for your proof. And waiting…..and waiting…..

  • Typical. Another Xtian who quits when they get painted in a corner.

    Define your god and I will disprove her. I am waiting. That should be simple – define your god and I will prove it does not exist.

    Pretty simple – unless you cannot even define this thing you believe in. And I am not going to do your research for you – not my responsibility to support the intellectually lazy.

    So give me your definition of god.

  • Would you like to see a scan of my seminary degree?

    You are the one with no understanding of your holy book. I hold a doctorate in Ministry and know the bible all too well.

    So you might want to slow up a bit there slick…

  • The essence of the soul was conceived before dawn. Something you know not for you continue in your blindness, like the many.

  • Proof of what? Brad hasn’t made any claims which require proving. He specifically said, “I do not claim that a god does not exist, I merely see no evidence to support the existence of such a being.”

    From that statement, what is it that you need proof for? Do you need proof that he sees no evidence?

    You have 66 books full of talking animals, magic powers, and contradictions to scientific findings. Is there proof that the first human couple were thrown out of a garden of paradise after eating magical knowledge fruit on the advice of a talking snake? There are countless other books around the planet, with similar stories of magic and myth, and they all have teeming masses of followers who claim that their books count as proof. How do we tell the true from the false? What method will sort the myths from the facts?

  • I think we learn “evil” by knowing the good of God, Atheist. (Or would you prefer I call you by your first name above? lol)
    It’s like bank tellers…..they can spot counterfeit money because they know what the real stuff looks like. Discernment is a gift, I believe, but perhaps the teaching stems again, from knowing the real Jesus…..That’s why a church with nothing to hide would suggest that you read your Bible. I think if a lot of people who claim to be Christians owned a Bible, let alone read it, we would all be better off. ( Just my intemperance again.) But with that , some assemblies, calling themselves “churches” wouldn’t be able to continue in their false teachings with a knowledgable congregation and the false teachers, prophets, etc., would be much easier to spot.

  • From God. As one gets to know Him, one knows good, so it is easier, like I said, to distinguish evil.. I’m trying to come up with some scripture on this….

  • Thank you – Xtians in general with logic and Sandi has no grasp whatsoever of how the burden of proof works.

    I have asked him to define his god and I will be happy to prove such a being doesn’t exist. So far…silence.

  • Then given that an evil God could quite conceivably imbue us with a skewed sense of discernment (thus tricking us into considering Him to be good) how can we ever possibly know that He actually IS good…?

  • OK – then Homer’s Odyssey is the real holy book. There is my proof your god does not exist.

    Now you prove Zeus does not exist.

  • You are making yourself look bad because you are intellectually bankrupt.

    You are either unwilling or unable to define your god. Define your god and I will disprove it.

    Is that too hard for you? You tell me I do not understand the Bible (and I am the one with a seminary degree) and you are a biblical scholar!

    So get busy and define your god. Or admit you will not or can not.

  • It looks like you’ve been hurt. I’m sorry.
    Scripturally, this is how it should go….Matthew 18: Dealing With Sin in the Church

    15“If your brother or sister sins, go and point out their fault, just between the two of you. If they listen to you, you have won them over. 16But if they will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’d 17If they still refuse to listen, tell it to the church; and if they refuse to listen even to the church, treat them as you would a pagan or a tax collector.

  • here’s one:
    2 Timothy 3:15
    And how from childhood you have been acquainted with the sacred writings, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.”

    I have difficulty with your capitalization of God above Athiest. God is not evil. There is only one God.

    How do we know that He actually is good. Let’s go back to Genesis. He created the Earth, the Heavens and the seas for man to dwell in, in perfect union with Him. He forgave man when He wilfully sinned against Him – and continues to. He made this for us to have fellowship with Him.
    Also, He allows it to rain on the good and on the evil, hoping others will see His goodness and come to repentance to have fellowship with Him – rather than zapping us out of existence when we have sinned too much. He provides sunlight for our crops and animals. He provides air for us to breathe. He provides flowers for us to enjoy.
    As far as salvation goes, He died so we don’t have to. I would say that that is pretty good.
    He is a just God. He protected Israel, and us, how many times when we didn’t deserve it? He punishes the evildoers, and gives us all a lifetime to repent with few repercussions that will count in eternity.

  • insulting me is not proof either. Where’s your proof. I provided what you asked for initially, now please reciprocate.

  • “God is not evil.”

    How can you know that if it was He who engineered the manner in which you ascertain it? If, for example, I had given you your sense of what “handsome” was, I’d make myself a 10 in your eyes. Perhaps even an 11. 😉

    Were God evil, how could we possibly know it since it was He who gave us the mechanism with which to judge Him and His scripture…?

  • OK Sandi – you have now proven you are nothing but another intellectual dishonest, willfully ignorant wannabe Christian troll.

    I have offered to prove your god does not exist multiple times. All I ask is that you define your god. I cannot disprove something I know nothing about. I have no idea what you conception of god is.

    So – just answer a couple of questions…they are really simply and I will gladly supply the proof you want.

    Is your god omniscient?

    Is your god omnipresent?

    Is your god benevolent?

    Answer those 3 questions and I will be happy to prove no such being exists.

    Stop dodging. If you cannot answer those 3 questions you are demonstrating how much of a simpleton you are in regards to your own belief!

  • Ifyou read what I said carefully, you will see that we agree.
    The statement “I believe there is no God” is not a statement of fact, but of belief. It doesn’t mean the same thing as saying “I have no belief there is a god.”, which is a factual statement as well as a statement about evidence.

  • “I cannot disprove something I know nothing about. ” Absolutely, so perhaps you should stop asserting that He does not exist. blessings to you and yours Brad.

  • Because God is the creator. Adam set the names on trees and animals. God gave us
    “good” and thus defined it.
    I need to run right now but will get back to you later. Blessings Atheist.

  • Having re-read it, this article is helpful in that it points out a widely held misconception – that everyone has abandoned religion specifically because they had a “bad experience”. While it’s true that many people have had awful experiences with their particular religious institution, its clergy, or their own zealous family members, that certainly isn’t the case across the board, and it’s nice to see some stats on the topic.

  • Good point. My bad. I missed the “or”. I agree that there are some/many who never believed but played along because they thought they were alone.

  • “66 books” Well then. So I’m sure we can all find 66 books which “prove” astrology works too, and there we are.

  • Thanks for the links!

    So hypothetically, if I’m in a room with you, the updated KJV, and my Hindu friend Ravi with his Vidas. Both of you insist your respective gods exist and point to each of your holy books to back it up.

    What’s our process for determining which of you might have the right answer[s] and which might be mistaken…?

  • Maybe you should quit being a troll and answer my questions.

    What are you afraid of Sandi? Are you afraid if you define your god that I will disprove him?

    Or are you simply incapable of doing it?

    If you cannot define the being you worship, you are wallowing in willful ignorance.

    Personally, I think you know deep down, that if you actually define your gods attributes, I will destroy them.

    So, since I have studied the bible and the concept of the Christian god quite a bit…I will just destroy them without your help.

    Is god omniscient? If so, he know every from the beginning of time to the end of time. That makes god incapable of EVER changing his mind. Yet the bible (your so called proof) says that god changed his mind at least nineteen (19) times.

    Citation:

    http://bible.knowing-jesus.com/topics/God-Changing-His-Mind

    Is god omnipresent? If so, where is he? If your god is present everywhere and actively intervenes in the world, there should be evidence of it. As I said before, so far, no such evidence has withstood the test of reason. Funny how the invisible is indistinguishable from the non-existence.

    Is god omnibenevolent? Let us simply go to the issue of theodicy.
    Let us return to the words of Epicurus:

    Is God willing to prevent evil, but not able? Then he is not omnipotent.

    Is he able, but not willing? Then he is malevolent.

    Is he both able and willing? Then whence cometh evil?

    Is he neither able nor willing? Then why call him God?

    Let’s face it – your god is an imaginary friend. There is as much evidence for UFO’s occupied by aliens as there is for your religious belief.

    Cheers to you – despite your trolling and inability to provide a rational defense for your belief – I pity you.

    Good day.

  • The fact that thoss 66 books have been proven to be fraudulent, every claim christians make based on their bible is incorrect, and modern science has rendered the concept of a creator-god completely impotent and useless.

  • I grew up with bible studies as a graded school subject, son of a pastor, wrote hymns, etc. Honestly, I would have to say that it was my time spent in study that led to my slow advancement into unbelief. Certainly my observations of the lives of believers around me contributed to this. However, the more I learned, the less possible it became for me to believe God was good. I came to realise that I would not live my life worshipping evil out of fear of punishment. I cannot say there was any specific point or event that turned me away.

    I do not see myself ever becoming a believer again. At best, if I were to be convinced that God exists, and especially if I were to be convinced that any god proposed by any major religion was real, I would consider it to be evil, and would like to believe that I would have the strength to stand for what is right, and walk into hell with my head held high.

    Celestial tyranny and torture do not make god good.

  • thanks. It made me laugh and wonder if she wanted me to call you “Stupid”. That’s why I made the comment. I think her comments are still there. It made me laugh and I intended no offence to you whatsoever.

  • Your faith is amazing, that’s right faith.

    There are so many lies about God that religion has created. God said the truth will set you free. He also said that if you choose to believe a lie that He will even send strong delusions.
    The devil is so crafty and more intelligent that the human race, he even convinced 1/3 of the angles in heaven to follow him and not God.

    What makes anyone think they can outsmart satan.
    You think he wants you to believe he exist……….That would be a big fat NO!

    So my question to you would be what do you believe in…..because EVERYONE on the planet believes in something?

  • Your faith is amazing, that’s right faith.

    There are so many lies about God that religion has created. God said the truth will set you free. He also said that if you choose to believe a lie that He will even send strong delusions.
    The devil is so crafty and more intelligent that the human race, he even convinced 1/3 of the angles in heaven to follow him and not God.

    What makes anyone think they can outsmart satan.
    You think he wants you to believe he exist……….That would be a big fat NO!

    So my question to you would be what do you believe in…..because EVERYONE on the planet believes in something?

    Like history check out this video, don’t comment unless you watch ithttp://www.revelationmystery.com

  • I think that I believed everything you wrote back when I was a believer.
    I walked with Jesus. I felt belonging and uplifting in his name and in his words. Our relationship was solid.
    But one day, I was researching for a test on basic astrophysics (I have never felt that science and religion were opposed. Given the number of great scientists who were also great believers, I still don’t.) I was considering the concept of size.
    And in a moment of what I can only describe as revelation, I recognized how big the Milky Way galaxy actually is.
    I can list off the statistics, x-millions of light years across, y-millions in depth…but humans find it very difficult to translate such immensities into anything beyond abstractions. In that moment, I understood how tiny, fragile and ultimately insignificant everything I knew was – the people, the world, and yes, even my concept of God was too small to encompass one galaxy, let alone the millions of them.
    I reasoned that this was my problem, that my concepts were too small, not God. So I sought to ease my doubts in the Bible.
    And I was repulsed.
    I saw the evil God of the old testament for the foul thing he was. I saw the Gospels counter one another instead of complement. I saw the misogyny of Paul. For the first time, I read with my eyes open to the words on the page.
    That was not the end of course, but I will not bore you with my months of soul searching. In the end, I realised I had been walking alone. The belonging and uplifting I felt came from within, not without. The power and the greatness that had suffused me was mine all along.
    And I became a better person, too. I shed my arrogance and self-importance even as I gained confidence and self-discipline. I was happier, no longer tormented by fears I now saw to be phantasms of a worried mind.
    I was a believer. Now I am not. Make of it what you will.

  • Hon, if you exchanged the truth of God for a lie, it is not His fault. He is the same Person He has always been. The God of the OT was protecting and training His People.
    One can spend months judging God – He’s been for eternity. And, His ways are not our ways. Unless you belong to Him, you’ll never understand that.
    Somewhere, you did not guard your heart, or you had yourself fooled that you did believe, my friend.
    1 Timothy 6:20 – New International Version
    Timothy, guard what has been entrusted to your care. Turn away from godless chatter and the opposing ideas of what is falsely called knowledge,” He said it all right there

    My question is, if you can walk away from the love relationship that serves and protects you, from a Friend who gave His life for you after being physically abused, you say you had with God, what is it that you seem to want from a relationship that is better?
    1 John 1:6 – If we claim to have fellowship with him and yet walk in the darkness, we lie and do not live out the truth.

  • The life of all the nones I know are better without religion. This observation covers relatives who used to go to Mass twice a week and just left the church in their 60’s (joining tehir children). They have absolutely no interest in finding another church. The big question is, what to do about a funeral? The US Catholic Church, in some ways, is becoming like the Anglican Church in England, a western form of Shintoism, there for life marker ceremonies for people with no interest in dogma or piety.

  • You mean like the cynical “conservative” politicians who use fundamentalist believers while having contempt for their ignorance?

  • I didn’t walk away from anything. I simply realized I was speaking of a relationship that had only ever existed in my mind. It wasn’t real.
    As to the Old Testament, most of the terrible things commanded by God happen when Judea is attacking other nations, not defending itself. God orders rape, murder, genocide. His Judges, supposedly the most holy and God-regarded people in Judea, sent to bring them from squalor and domination, conduct at various times violation of the law of hospitality, mass murder, and human sacrifice in the name of the lord.
    Even if I believed in this God, I could not worship him. I will not worship any being I am morally superior to.
    But the fact remains: Once I did believe, and now I do not.

  • I believe lots of things: that Madison is the capital of Wisconsin, that 2+2 is four, etc. but I’m not certain I believe IN things, so I’m not sure I can offer anything satisfactory. Do you have examples of things you think I might believe IN? I don’t want to dodge the question.

    Also, if you could explain what it is you think I have faith in, I’d appreciate that as well. I do appreciate your time, my friend…

  • I believe in God but when I try to think of all the good he has done in my life I see mostly me helping myself with others doing so occasionally. Does

  • Belief for me was comfortable until adulthood then I couldn’t understand why I never received the blessings that others seem to. Recently I realized that Christians think everything they receive is from God even the most easiest explanations are God’s work. You get your electric back on because you work a job that pays you for doing the work and you say God made a way out of no way or Look what God did. I just think hmm interesting

  • IT’S odd that to substantiate your claim that a person never believe if they choose to leave by a man who was a self proclaimed apostle that told numerous lies in his epistles, lies that became evident through his own mouth. Not just that but frequently condemned any unbelievers and boasted himself to the highest. How can it be so easy to accept his word as God word when history gives a clear representation of how and when the Bible was compiled. How do you know that what you are reading really comes from God when all you have is the new testament to go off of? To believe one man’s testimony is absolutely astounding.

  • Even at 8 I was a skeptic who had the nerve to tell a Sunday School teacher that the “Noah’s Ark” story could not be true. Same thing with Jonah and the Whale. She was very unhappy and said something to the effect that it was in the Bible and therefore was definitely true. I didn’t say anything more, but I didn’t believe her. It all went downhill from there.

    It blows my mind that people seriously follow and believe a book written over 2,000 years ago, and try to apply it to modern life. That’s like using a 2,000 year-old medical book to treat someone. The Bible was written when slavery was the norm, women were property, and gays were killed. It was an interesting book, but we’ve had ton of advances in knowledge since it was written. We now know that slavery is terrible, women are NOT property, and gay people deserve the same rights and freedoms as everyone else.

    My best friend belongs to a SDA church and is a Deacon, but he admits he’s really an atheist. He goes to keep the peace with his wife. i don’t harass him about it – we all make accommodations of one sort or another.

  • If you will take the time to look above – I have already done so. I got tired of waiting, waiting, waiting for you to say something intelligent and rational. So I destroyed the arguments your holy book uses to describe the attributes of you god.

    You see Sandi – you are just a stereotypical Christian troll. Arrogant and willfully ignorant. You know nothing about your holy book and damn little about your own religion. You have shown yourself to be incapable of even defining this god you believe in. You display a remarkable lack of critical thinking, cannot or will not answer the simplest questions about what you believe.

    But here are some of the things you believe in:

    Talking snakes. Talking donkeys. Noah’s flood. The so called exodus. A literal Adam and Eve. Dragons. Angels. Demons.

    And if you are Catholic – you believe in even weirder stuff like Transubstantiation, the whole virgin Mary worship, fraudulent miracles.

    You are gullible, indoctrinated, willfully ignorant of the world around you and show the arrogance of the stupid.

    And yes – I pity you. The cognitive dissonance in your brain must be tremendous. I really have a hard time understanding how you cope with science constantly proving your religion to be fraudulent. It must be terrible for you.

    But maybe one day your poor, indoctrinated brain will rise out of it’s stupor of ignorance and you will understand how much of your life you have wasted sucking up to that crap. But I sort of doubt it – I am not sure you have the basic intelligence to look at your beliefs with a critical eye.

    Now go wallow around in your self indulgent, willfully ignorant arrogance while the rest of us enjoy being rational, critical thinking human beings. A group you definitely do not belong to.

    Cheers…

  • If atheism represents actual reality, rather than blatant falsehood, then your friend has NO reason to practice such deception/lies with family and community.

    Why would your friend want to continue “using a 2000-year-old medical book to treat someone”? Your wording implies that some sort of damage is being risked or caused by such a situation. Yet that situation is what your friend continues to participate in, right?

    Why doesn’t he simply come clean and tell the people in his chosen community group (the SDA church) the simple truth — if indeed it is the truth — that their biblical beliefs are incorrect and that atheism is correct? Is PUBLIC DISHONESTY an acceptable atheist behavior these days?

    Moreover, “we’ve had tons of advances in knowledge since (the Bible) was written”, you said. So surely he’d want his beloved wife to share in his own atheistic good news and enlightenments. Surely there’s NO chance his wife might patiently come up with counter-arguments from rationality and the natural world that would clog up and bring down his atheism!!

  • They are ALSO afraid that friends and families will rationally and Scripturally **question** their atheist beliefs, and thereby show that their atheism is full of unanswered problems.

    (Which can create yet more tensions, of course.)

  • The internet makes it very easy to notice that scientists treat a given person’s religion– exactly like that person treats conflicting religions/myths/superstitions. They dismiss it as being useless in regards to knowing what is ACTUALLY true. When things are real (like x-rays) scientists are eager to test the evidence and find out more. The knowledge becomes a part of science. But religions are indistinguishable from myths, legends, superstitions, and pseudoscience. It’s just a bunch of people claiming to know things they do not actually know. When the truth actually matters (like, say, when a loved one is missing)– people turn to science, because it works whether you “believe in it” or not.

  • Sounds like there are a lot of candidates for Ethical Humanism or Jewish Humanism (if Jewish.) Don’t people know about this? Humanists have values, teach children, etc.

  • I know. It was such a relief when I realized that random stuff was just random stuff. There was no magic message to figure out. And nobody but me was responsible for figuring out what to do with random stuff that came my way.

  • But when a pastor who has been praised by the congregation for 20 years becomes an atheist, all the sudden he was never a Christian at all. Convenient.

  • Be careful what you wish for. A large number of atheists got there because they read the bible. It was one of the final steps to me figuring out it was all nonsense.

  • What is amazing is that so many are still showing up insisting on believing. For a generation, mainline have staffed their pulpits with clergy who teach, “Whether one accepts or rejects Jesus is no more profound a choice than Pepsi or Coke. Don’t worry, God did not change my life and God will not ask you to change yours either.” They were effective. They were believed. Now, they are surprised that people walked away. The amazing thing is that so many still show up daring to believe, and so many who walked away still troll the religion blogs–curious as to why.

  • Humanism became another dirty word, concurrent with the culture wars of the 1980s and beyond. I remember “secular humanism” being tossed around as an epithet and I had no idea what it was. Really what you’re touching on is the question of whether Nones will want to organize into communities, whether they identify as Humanists or something else. It’s an open question as of today.

  • “. . . so many who walked away still troll the religion blogs–curious as to why.”

    No mystery. It’s simply a necessary part of self-defense against multitudes of religious people who are still adamant about using their delusional sense of entitlement to rigidly control the experiences, thought processes, beliefs, and behaviors/actions of other people, including those “who walked away.”

  • I quit believing at 23 after I found out about atheism from atheists. I had been a skeptic since I was 12, thanks to science. It finally boiled down to the simple question: Is there any evidence that any gods exist? The answer is No. The bible and all the other “sacred” writings only prove that there’s a belief in gods.

  • Ok. So what evidence did you find that proved atheism is true. What facts did the atheists give you that convinced atheism is true?

  • The only way to know something is good or bad is by an objective moral standard:
    So what is your objective criteria that led you to believe that God is not good?

  • Just because YOU don’t believe in God doesn’t mean there is no God, you just choose not to believe or you have stopped believing.

    Question: When you meet your spouse did you know all about them or did you have to learn about them?
    Just like being a Christian (and believing) its NOT a leap unto Christ it’s DAY by DAY, FAITH to FAITH.

    ONE THING TO ALWAYS REMEMBER

    God is a gentleman, He will not force you to believe in or love Him, it’s totally your decision.

    If any of you get a chance read: “The Great Controversy” by Ellen G. White

  • I get where your coming from truly I do. I can tell you this. Currently 58 and at the age of 56 I started to have a relationship with the God of Abraham. See, I knew OF God and OF Jesus, however I did not know them at ALL. I can’t even explain what happen, other than to say I ASK for a relationship with Jesus.

    One thing I have learned is that God is a gentleman, He will not force you to believe in or love Him, it’s totally our decision.

    If any you get a chance read: “The Great Controversy” by Ellen G. White

  • I’m not doubting your perspective on your personal experience. Nor that of the Hindu. I’m wondering if there’s a demonstrable, replicable method for contrasting those two perspectives empirically to arrive at the truth.

    It sounds like there might not be, is that a fair summation…?

  • I commend you for looking for TRUTH, most people just stop looking…right?

    There is a verse in the Bible that says this:

    The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”

    ‭‭II Thessalonians‬ ‭2:9-12‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

    The thing is just because people don’t believe in God doesn’t mean there is no God, you just choose not to believe or you have stopped believing.

    Question: When you meet your spouse did you know all about them or did you have to learn about them?

    Just like being a Christian (and believing) its NOT a leap unto Christ it’s DAY by DAY, FAITH to FAITH.

  • “When you meet your spouse did you know all about them or did you have to learn about them?”

    I had to learn. But meeting her, face-to-face, was the important first step in that relationship. Believing in her was not a prerequisite to being able to see, and relate to, her. 😉

    Do you think faith is the best path for us to take in determining whether or not something is true…?

  • NO….Most people believe what they believe and yet don’t understand that what they actually have is FAITH.
    Faith is a choice, belief is a choice…..you either choose to or choose not to believe the earth is round because photos and man says it is (Amazing Fact: the Bible says the earth is a circle) right?

    You have faith that when you get in your car your breaks will stop you right?

    Check out the short video (about 9 minutes)…actually pretty cool
    https://youtu.be/8E9uiaw5qgs

  • For many, religion is too abstract. It doesn’t relate to their day-to-day lives. It’s become a form of gnosticism that has left many behind. Any turn toward politics is a short-lived boost. The core of the faith needs to be strengthened. And the battles over adiaphora need to stop.

  • The thing is, I can test my brakes. I can observe the curvature of the earth as ships disappear over the horizon.

    So these aren’t faith issues for me. These are levels of confidence backed by empirical, demonstrable, and replicable evidence of the sort I’ve been seeking in my conversations with the devout from all sorts of religions.

    If faith is NOT the best way to determine that god claims are true, I’m still left desperately wondering what IS?

  • 2 Corinthians 4:4 – New International Version

    The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

  • Perhaps his friend realises that what is not important to him, Is important to his loved ones and he want’s them to be happy. And when they finally snap out of it too he will be better able to support them.

  • New International Version 2 Corinthians 4:4

    The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.

  • BTW, did you not read the Bible text I sent you. If you didn’t here it is again

    The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness.”

    ‭‭II Thessalonians‬ ‭2:9-12‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

  • I did. It too relies on the presuppositionalist position by purporting a soul prior to demonstrating one.

    And I understand that the fear of death and the allure of reunification with our dead loved ones are powerful motivators. I’d love nothing more than to see my dead father again.

    But I think we’ve also agreed that simply wanting something doesn’t necessarily make it so. We might replace “god” with “soul” in our entire conversation thus far and we’d end up right back where we are now, wondering how we empirically demonstrate the truth of the soul proposition to others…

  • Quit sorry for you feeling creepy, not my intent.

    My intent was to illustrate that when you meet your spouse you didn’t know their character, you have to get to know them before you fell in love.

    The same way with Jesus you have to learn, understand, trust Him before you can fall in love with Him.

  • I did, but authority of the Bible relies upon the existence of God, so citing scripture seems to be putting our cart ahead of our horse.

    Still looking for the horse, my friend… 😉

  • Last question…………Do you want to know truth or are you playing games? Because you don’t have to believe what any man says, INCLUDING THIS ONE.

  • Go to a place in your home or in the forest where you can not be disturbed (at all). Pull up 2 chairs (or 2 logs) your choice. And simple ASK my God to have a seat with you, then ask Him your questions. Ask Him to revel to you His truths.

  • Croquet_Player Sandi Luckins • a day ago

    You needn’t capitalize “atheist”. ‘Atheism’ is a common noun, not a proper noun, so in English it should not normally be capitalized (unless it is at the beginning of a sentence).

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    Sandi Luckins Croquet_Player • a day ago

    thank you but that is his name.

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    Croquet_Player Sandi Luckins • a day ago

    Apparently the full name is “Stupid Atheist” (which I find very amusing). I feel people should be addressed as they identify themselves.

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    Sandi Luckins Croquet_Player • a day ago

    thank you.

  • Amen, Brother White.

    And yes, I want to know that which is true and eschew that which is not. Thus I share the questions that stand between me and blind faith.

    Out of respect for both of us, I’d rather be an honest apostate than masquerade as one among the flock. And I may have said it before but it bears repeating: I do appreciate your time and the consideration of your replies…

  • I promise you I shall. And if a revelation is forthcoming, you my friend will be the first to know.

    What might it tell us if nothing comes of it…?

  • You made a statement, but that does not make it true. I would argue that human history, and even religious history, shows morality to be subjective, and something we are to this day still working to improve.

    Even if you were able to prove that god exists, and that he has the power he is claimed to have, as a species, we have largely figured out that might does not make right.

    We no longer regard the taking of women as “spoils of war” to be good. We no longer believe that a rape victim should be bought by her rapist. We no longer believe that slavery is natural and right.

    We have come a long ways, and have far left to go. However, if God is good, don’t you think he could have maybe mentioned things like “Don’t fuck kids”? Might that not have rated a mention on his 10 commandments?

  • I (me) believe you will continue to search and you will find truth.

    Jesus said ““Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.”
    ‭‭Matthew‬ ‭7:7-8‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

    Stay in contact my brother

  • I agree with Mr. Gibson, to a point: He is an atheist. As are you. As am I.

    None of us accept the arguments for the Hellenistic gods, as just the first example that comes to mind.

    But his demand that I’m compelled to “describe the God I don’t believe in” conflates the concept of “not believing X” with “believing X is not”, which are two entirely different positions.

    I hold to the former, not the latter…

  • No, JP. Science relies on evidence, analysis and inquiry. If the evidence does not support the theory, the theory has to be modified or discarded.

    Religion relies on its sacred books and ignores any information outside those books. Religion’s followers call that “faith”, but that word is just a euphemism for refusing to admit ignorance.

  • The bible only proves that there’s a belief in a god.

    Using your requirement to prove a negative, I can say there’s an underground civilization on Mars. We just haven’t discovered it yet. It’s up to you to prove that that Martian underground civilization does not exist.

  • Religion Made Simple:

    Religion grew out of fear of the unknown, namely fear of natural phenomena and fear of death. In ancient times, there was no scientific understanding of the events in nature. Bad events, such as storms, earthquakes, crop failures and epidemics were attributed to supernatural deities, such as Ra, Zeus, or Apollo (just to use some Mediterranean world examples). When these events occurred, people assumed the gods must be angry. Out of this grew the pagan religions with their rituals and their organizations of priests who orchestrated ways to please the gods.

    Along a similar line, the fear of death led to a belief that an “afterlife” existed. Rather than accept physical death as the end of life, people prepared themselves and deceased relatives for perceived pleasures of the next life. For the well-to-do, especially rulers, this meant the building of elaborate tombs, the Pyramids of Egypt being of course a prime example. Most people were buried with more simple material goods.

    In the monotheistic religions of Judaism, Christianity and Islam, there was one god responsible for all natural wonders and events. In these religions, unlike most of the earlier religions, there were two paths in the afterlife: one of eternal paradise, and the other of eternal torture and pain. So, the goal of pleasing the one god was not only meant to prevent natural calamities but also to insure that a person made it to the afterlife of eternal paradise.

    Today, the scientific understanding of events of nature has for the most part eclipsed the use of deities to explain unusual events. However, the fear of death and of the risk of eternal damnation in the afterlife ensures the continuation of religion.

    Religion, in other words, rests on superstition and ignorance. “Sacred” books, such as the Bible and Koran, are only books of fictional literature, like the Iliad and the Odyssey, and should be treated as such.

    So, why do I reject religion? Quite simply, where’s the proof that a supernatural deity exists? Without the proof, religion – along with its fears and desires to please the gods – crumbles like a house of cards.

    “There are no Gods, no angels, no devils, no heaven or hell. There is only our natural world. Religion is but myth and superstition that hardens the hearts and enslaves minds.” — Robert Ingersoll

  • The internet is perpetuating an earthquake that started in the mid-1400s with the invention of the printing press, which led to the mass publication of information. It made the Renaissance and Reformation possible. Before the printing press, the only way to reproduce a book was by hand-copying it. Without the printing press, Martin Luther might have suffered the same fate as earlier reformers like Jan Hus, who was burned at the stake in 1415.

    The big difference is that individuals only need a computer, tablet or smartphone to access the internet to access or publish information. They don’t need a library, printing press, or broadcasting equipment to learn about or to spread ideas. It’s causing a major headache for religious clerics as well as authoritarian regimes who are trying to control their flocks.

    Side note–A major reason that the Islamic world did not go through same the intellectual revolution that Europe went through from the 1450s to 1800 is that the printing press was banned in the Ottoman Empire from 1483 to 1729. (Limited uses were allowed for non-Arabic script.) It didn’t arrive in Persia (Iran) until about 1820. While Europe advanced in science, technology and industry, the Middle East, which had been a leader in science while Europe was in its dark ages, stagnated.

  • Those 66+ books only prove that there’s a belief in a god. They don’t prove that it exists. (Notice that I used a small “g” and used no gender pronouns.)

  • The author (another presuppositionalist) asserts this: “IT IS THE AIM OF
    THIS BOOK, READER, TO HELP THE TROUBLED SOUL TO A RIGHT SOLUTION OF ALL THESE
    PROBLEMS. IT IS WRITTEN BY ONE WHO HAS TASTED AND FOUND THAT GOD IS GOOD” (sorry for the upper-case, but that’s how it’s presented)

    …leaving me, at least, anxious for the story of how Ms. White “tasted and found” her God. That seems central to her entire essay (and our conversation) and, sadly, seems left entirely out of her narrative…

  • You keep saying an atheist has to prove that the Christian god does not exist. Using the same standard, you have to prove that Zeus does not exist.

  • I had the same experience. I very nearly became a Christian, but then, the full weight of the absolute absurdity of the central tenet of Christianity, John 3:16, came crashing down on me, and with it, my turn towards faith.
    Knock knock!
    Who’s there?
    It’s Jesus. Let me in!
    Why?
    Because I have to save you!
    From what?
    From what I’m going to do to you if you don’t let me in!

  • JP has lots of beliefs about science and atheists, just like he has lots of beliefs about the nature of god. They are not necessarily connected to reality.

    The real problem with his comment is that he has just denigrated faith as way to actually know anything at all, and yet, he will deny that he just said so.

    It’s a waste of time to argue with him.

  • John 8:47 New International Version (NIV)

    47 Whoever belongs to God hears what God says. The reason you do not hear is that you do not belong to God.”

  • except Jesus never met Paul. there is absolutely no record or rumor of this happening in either the Bible or the early church traditions.

  • He who makes the claim bears the burden of proof.
    Its up to you to prove with facts that there is a “underground civilization on Mars.”

  • You need to believe certain unprovable assumption about the universe to do science. For example: you must believe that the laws of nature are same throughout the universe at all times and places without proof. You have to assume this is the case. That takes faith.

  • Never said anything like that. Rather the atheist needs some facts that shows atheism is true.

    What evidence do you have for the existence of Zeus?

  • faith in the premises of science? So you are till arguing that faith is a lousy way to know something.
    faith in the premises of science? Or actual evidence that science works.
    I don’t have “faith” that the sun will rise tomorrow. For the 24,000 days I’ve been alive, it has.

  • Only to you.
    We create the meaning in our lives. You do it with god. I don’t need a god for that,
    And even if that were true– and it most assuredly is not– to say it has on meaning is not to say it has no value.

  • Not to me but everyone. Life is ultimately meaningless if you cease to exist at death. It matters not what kind of meaning you attach to your life.
    Even Dawkins recognizes this:
    “In a universe of electrons and selfish genes, blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but pitiless indifference.”
    ― Richard Dawkins, River Out of Eden: A Darwinian View of Life

  • EXACTLY. So the burden of proof goes to Brad, but he probably can’t prove it without relying on faith, so we’re back to where we started. Sound familiar?

  • KOOL BEANS
    Oh, that’s kool. Peter Boghossian’s version of 10,000 “points of light” as an actual list. I was just in Portland about two hours ago. I would love to take some classes from him (kinda like being a student of Socrates revisited) but I am 1.5 hours away from Portland. As soon as I saw Street Epistemology for the very first time, it was pretty obvious the fraternity it has with the Socratic method (I read and was enchanted by the dialogues of Socrates and Plato many moons ago). Currently my only interaction with SE is as a subscriber to Anthony Magnabosco’s YouTube Channel. Pretty gosh darn entertaining stuff. I’ll have to give it a contemplative think. Thanx.

  • again, only to you. But that’s you. you have all sorts of strange ideas.
    And Dawkins is merely stating the obvious. you simply don’t agree with it. I do, which is why I say we provide our own meaning. As well as our own justice, our own good.

  • Magnabosco is huge. And since adopting that sort of mindset, I have a lot more discussions ending cordially with newfound Internet friendships with the devout.

    We need to talk, not argue. And I think Prof. Boghossian has managed to bridge a substantial social divide…

  • Yep, it seems like SE took with you pretty well. I thought you did a great job. I was skeptical at how well it would work over social media, but it looks like you nailed it…congrats.

  • Why are you guys indulging Sandi’s childish debating tactic: “I showed you mine, now show me yours”? Under that lifted dress is the smooth, featureless crotch of a Barbie doll.

  • I respect the opinions voiced here – even those I don’t agree with. I wrestled with my own faith issues for a few years, but I was able to come to a different conclusion than what many have voiced here. My honest and personal investigation into many of the prophetic fulfillments in the Bible and historical evidence of the stories in the Biblical text, along with my own prayer and spiritual quest led me to find God in a meaningful way which has truly changed my life. I am not writing this to generate any debates on this subject – just sharing my own perspective. I believe that is why they were given (prophecies in such detail) – to offer some credibility to the message for those who say there is no evidence and it is all myth. Can God be found today? The verse that changed my life is this “You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13. If you seek Him with all your heart you will find Him. God says he does not lie. If you want to truly know the answer to this eternal question (if God can be found), see then for yourself if what He says is true or not.

  • Sounds rather similar to the famed piece in Exodus where God “Hardens the heart” of Pharaoh so that he WON’T let the Jews simply leave as his adoptive brother wants him to do.
    In both cases it just highlights how foul and evil the God of the Bible often is. In Exodus, he dooms the Egyptians to the Plagues, Pharaoh and his (innocent) troops to drowning, and the Israelites get to leave…exactly as Pharaoh had intended to let them leave in the first place. Pharaoh is prevented by God from doing the right thing, and is murdered and has his people tortured for it, for no good reason.
    Your quote is even less impressive. The idea is for everyone to eventually be Christian, and “saved”. So why would your God make it difficult or impossible to convert unbelievers? Sounds dangerously close to the concept of an “Elect”, or predestination to me, which denies utterly any concept of free will.
    Besides which, as stated before, I did believe. In that theory, God could simply decide to “turn off” the belief of any believer whenever He chose. Kinda scary if you believe in hell.

  • I’m guessing my previous reply got moderated away or something… perhaps because I mentioned triggering topics, that were espoused by the bible.

    I cannot be bothered to write all that again in a manner that attempts to avoid mentioning atrocities. If we cannot converse about adult topics, this becomes a rather impossible forum to communicate about anything worthwhile.

    To summarise my previous post, one needs to only look back through history and one will find very little in the way of “objective unchanging morality”. Instead, one finds that humanity, and even religion itself, constantly is forced to change and update it’s stance on what is and is not moral.

    Unfortunately, it tends to be religion that is behind the times on such matters.

  • Just because people ignore an objective moral principle doesn’t mean that such principles don’t exist.
    Without an objective moral code-standard then any evil could be justified.

  • Now that nones represent a quarter of the American population the old prejudice against unbelievers must go. There is no reason to believe that secular Americans are any better or worse than others. They simply have different ideas about religion.

  • Actually, “elect” or “predestination” doesn’t deny freewill. I’m betwixed on Calvin or Armenian and haven’t got a really good hold on either of them. Honey, if you had believed, you would never have left that love. God bless you.

  • You really don’t know what you are talking about don…..lol……God bless you. If you want the scripture, I’ll look them up for you. blessings.

  • In the name of religion, every evil has already been justified.

    Therefore, if one was to accept that such a standard were to exist, would it not be just as logical to assume that perhaps that god is evil?

    Religion relies on certain innate assumptions.

    God exists.

    Good exists in an objective unalterable form.

    Evil exists in the same way.

    God is good.

    I know which interpretation of God is the correct one.

    As a human with a brain, and the ability to know how things around me can effect how I feel, and the ability to consider how others would feel if such a thing were to happen to them… I work to live a life that does not cause suffering to others, and to stand against those things that seek to do so.

    Religion is in no way helpful, it asks me to put aside my perceptions, my thoughts, my empathy, and instead accept that they can tell me better how to live my life, than those senses can. In many times they have claimed absolute justification for committing heinous acts, acts that cause any empathetic human being to shudder.

    If such a moral absolute were to exists, I’m sorry, but god and his followers seem to be on the wrong side of the issue.

    As to my stance, it relies on some very simple assumptions.

    The universe exists.

    I exist.

    I can think.

    I can feel.

    I don’t want to suffer, or have anyone I care about suffer.

    I should do my best to create a world where others care too.

  • You are so silly, especially when it comes to science.
    and genetics. and morality. and faith. In fact a whole bunch of stuff.
    No, it just takes a small assumption, and it is true until it no longer produces true or predictable results.
    The assumption is: because the laws of nature appear to be the same everywhere we can observe, it is assumed that there aren’t any local gods who alter the known laws of the universe at will.
    It’s the same assumption you make. You just don’t like to admit it.

  • You lie! Santa Claus is Jesus as an old man. That’s what I figured out when I was 4, and I haven’t seen anything to contradict it.

  • You can’t even do genetics without faith. You have to assume the laws of nature that influence genes have operated the same as today as they did a million years ago.

    BTW- assumptions can only be held by faith.

  • The way religion is taught and preached hasn’t changed since I was a kid, and that was a long time ago.
    The message of Jesus is still relevant, but we make our God too small. Religious cliches and metaphors are appropriate answers but they need to be expressed in a more relevant way perhaps a more metaphysical or psychological way as the situation requires. Some of the bible is difficult to understand. Some is even hard to believe. We need to get past the words sometimes to comprehend the lesson relevant to today’s world. We are all God’s children, can we please get past putting labels on different types of Christians. I know theologians in academia get paid to publish, but seriously some of these elitist concepts and terms you come up with are meaningless except to a few of you elitists. Instead come up with new ways to teach. Like maybe come up with a modern concept of what God is. I am getting so tired of the guy with a beard in white robes sitting on a throne in some mythical place called heaven. We live in a scientific metaphysical age certainly you can come up with a more believable description.

  • I understand where you are coming from. I went through a long period believing like that. Then the more I understood about science and theoretical quantum physics the more I started thinking everything that exists was not because of some kind of cosmic accident.

  • To say atheism is a lack of belief is illogical. Atheism is a belief there is no god. The origin of the word would be “theist” meaning deity and “a” meaning without.
    Furthermore in a practical sense it is impossible to have no belief in anything. For example I am pretty sure you believe the sun will appear to come up tomorrow. Most people believe, including you no doubt, when they go to sleep believe they will wake up. I understand why you want to say lack of belief because it is hard to say you have a belief which you can’t prove. And therein is the crux of the matter neither side can quantitatively or empirically prove or disprove the existence of a deity. Either the universe came into existence due to a cosmic accident or because of a deity neither can be proven or disproven.

  • In addition to a featureless crotch, Barbie’s head is made by a polymer working process called ” blowmolding “. It’s like blowing-up a balloon where the balloon hardens. Barbie’s head is filled with the same stuff residing in Luckins head….

  • Very well stated.
    Your 2nd para is spot-on.
    Side note – I find it interesting that god has a lawyer. Have you ever come across a bible that isn’t copyrighted ?

  • 66 books –
    That means the Bible needs shoring-up – it can’t stand on its own.
    Thank you for reinforcing what we knew all along.
    All other holy books have to be shored-up also.
    How many millions of humans have been and still are being tortured and killed in that never ending futile attempt.
    Onward Christian soldiers….

  • Religion is superstition based.
    Atheism is knowledge based.
    Truth is like beauty. It exists only in the eye of the beholder.

  • I don’t see it as an attempt to argue with him – but an attempt to illuminate his ignorance.
    Completely futile.

  • They – nones as with humanists don’t need their identities capitalized. Only the various religions require that self aggrandizement….

  • What I do understand is that believers and unbelievers need to get on together and respect each other. Just because people disagree doesn’t mean that they have to hate and despise each other.

  • If you could do that then belief in god would require no faith. And even if you could you would then have to provide incontrovertible proof regarding just what it actually is that this god wants us to do and does it fit in with our own likes and dislikes.

    For instance, what if this god turned out not to be any of the major gods known. Not Christian, Islamic, Hindu, Sikh, etc. How many of the billions of people who have spent their lives believing in these deities would accept that they’d been wrong all this time and would worship this new god? Not that many. They would fight it like creationists fight common sense.

    Whereas to atheists like me it would make no difference at all. The proven existence of a god would simply be the proven existence of another natural phenomena to be rationally studied and classified like any other natural phenomena is.

    You see it isn’t atheists who are scared of proving a god actually exists it’s the believers in the myriad deities who are. After all the odds are that it wouldn’t be their god and they wouldn’t like that at all.

  • Mglass,
    How can one respect those who condemn others to hell-not for bad behavior- but merely for not agreeing with them?

  • I learned about the evidence for evolution because I wanted to understand what the supposed controversy was about. I found that the evidence was indisputable and that no alternative addressed the evidence.

    I wanted to believe in some cosmic loving spirit, but no loving god would create a sysytem where nearly every living thing dies of starvation or being eaten alive.

  • I was on my way out because I had largely stopped believing, but listening to an idiot priest give what I came to call the ‘kill a commie for Christ’ pep talk, pretty well sealed the deal. The multiple, sordid, cases of child abuse at the hand of the church makes that decision look better all the time.

  • If you think evolution is indisputable you haven’t researched it enough. For example we are told that 97% of our DNA is like that of the Apes. Technically that is true, but 95% of our DNA is silent. Silent in that it does nothing which we can determine. Therefor of the remaining 5% we only have 2% of that 5% in common with Apes. To put it another way only 40% (2/5) of our ACTIVE DNA is the same as that of apes. The missing link commonly taught in evolution is a lie. It has never been found.
    Statistically it would have taken over a 100 billion years for life to have randomly formed in the “hostile” primordial soup.
    Finally science has no clue or at least no agreement as to what caused the big bang to happen especially now that the something from nothing theory has been discredited.
    This could get very deep but let me just say that science which knows relatively little of what can be known has created nearly as many myths as there are in various religious sacred texts. Perhaps when science knows what dark energy and dark matter are and they understand the purpose of neutrinos is we will be able more fully embrace science as both a physical and philosophical verity. In the mean time we grapple between theology, science, and philosophy.

  • Well of course! Actually proving the existence of a god, any God, would be terribly inconvenient, especially for believers, especially for any other gods who might want to get believed in.

    That’s why if I believed in a god, it would probably be Koschei the Deathless, Who Made Things As They Are.

    Says Koschei, “Wnat are your beliefs to Me, Who Made Things As They Are?”

    Clearly, the only God worth worshipping.

  • I absolutely agree. I have stated many times on these very pages: believe whatever you wish. if it makes your life better and you a better person, I’m all for it. My issue is always with dominionism, which means…but keep it to yourself, your family, and your church, and out of my life.

  • Your mathematical gibberish is just gibberish. I can prove that it is statistically impossible for you to exist, yet you exist, right?

    The Big Bang had nothing, nada, zip to do with evolution.

    Stop listening to shysters and read a book or two written by an actual evolutionary biologist (Why Evolution is True by Coyne is one choice). Read the scientific testimony in the Kitzmiller v Dover Trial and other info about evolution at the National Center for Science Education website. Read “Intro to Evolution” on Wikipedia and follow the links.

    Research the actual Theory of Evolution by Means of Natural Selection and the evidence in support of it.

  • In the book of 1 John the Apostle explains “They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out, that it might become plain that they all are not of us.” According to the London Confession of Faith of 1689 those who are truly in the faith remain so because it has been decreed by God himself. Of course this is not and will never be a satisfactory explanation to those who reject God out of hand believing that it is they who choose to reject religion in general and the God of the Bible in particular, because it is foolishness in their eyes.

  • Evolution is **incompatible** with Christianity. People must choose one and reject the other. Both items cannot be true at the same time.

    But don’t take my word for it. Your own testimony there, proves it. Also, further down, you mentioned evolutionist Dr. Jerry Coyne, and his position is that evolution and Christianity are incompatible.

  • You can’t define atheists into having a belief, no matter the root of the word… that would be an argument by definition fallacy. Dictionaries are descriptive not prescriptive.
    Here’s the thing, I was not raised to believe in a god, so I probably could have gone my whole life without thinking about a god if religious types didn’t occasionally cross my path and try and convince me of a god. As it is, I think about any particular god very little even when debating with theists, I certainly haven’t given much thought to what kind of god might exist, started the universe, or may or may not create what we see or control what we see. I think that would be a pointless exercise.
    However, the aforementioned religious types do present me with “their god”, and I can be quite certain their gods do not exist because they are illogical, and more importantly it is demonstrably the imaginings of men from primitive cultures. This is not something I believe it is something I know.
    You have already acknowledged that you know that atheists have good reason to deny that they are making a positive claim about the existence of god and why this is but you didn’t mention the bait-and-switch part of this theist ploy. That is the part where a very vague concept of god that might be lurking in the gaps not illuminated by science, suddenly becomes their deity of choice.
    So yes, the Jewish/Muslim/Christian god cannot be proven but can be disproven, as can all the other gods of all the other religions.
    Just about any god a theist can define can be disproved by logic (or proved to be fiction) unless their definition is so limp and lame that it is not really fit for purpose as a god.

  • I thought it was the loving and caring deity – you know, the deity of compassion and mercy – that consigned people to eternal torment.

  • JP doesn’t understand irony.

    JP: Just because people ignore an objective moral principle doesn’t mean that such principles don’t exist. Without an objective moral code-standard then any evil could be justified.

    Me: Yeah, like burning witches and torturing heretics.

    JP: What would be wrong with that in atheism?

    See what I mean?

  • Eyewitness testimonies? As always, you are too much..

    MATTHEW,2: “And seeing the multitudes, he went up into a mountain: and when he was set, his disciples came unto him: And he opened his mouth, and taught them, saying….”

    LUKE 6:17,20: “And he came down with them, and stood in the plain, and the company of his disciples, and a great multitude of people…came to hear him.. And he lifted up his eyes on his disciples and said…”

    Apparently, those eyewitnesses were so befuddled by The Glory of it all that they didn’t know up from down.

  • I know the difference between up and down. But why engage the texts when you can attack the messenger.

  • Without agreed upon definition there can be no argument or discussion. (See Socrates.) You claim something is not what you believe but what you know. You can’t claim to know the unknown which would render the difference between what you know and what you believe moot. You should also know that something which is demonstrable is not therefor always factual. No matter how logical your demonstrable theory is, logic is always assailable and refutable.

  • Why should a report of people leaving religion and ‘stop believing’ be a surprise?

    This calls attention to the reliability of the Scriptures when God made it clear that this would be a manifestation and a forewarning that the world is in its sunset times or approaching it as things may even become worse.

    2 Timothy 3:1

    3 But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, 4 treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5 having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people.
    [ 7 ] always learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth.

    LUKE 21:25

    Jesus: “There will be signs in the sun, moon and stars. On the earth, nations will be in anguish and perplexity at the roaring and tossing of the sea. 26 People will faint from terror, apprehensive of what is coming on the world, for the heavenly bodies will be shaken. 27 At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. 28 When these things begin to take place, stand up and lift up your heads, because your redemption is drawing near.”

    29 He told them this parable: “Look at the fig tree and all the trees. 30 When they sprout leaves, you can see for yourselves and know that summer is near. 31 Even so, when you see these things happening, you know that the kingdom of God is near.

    32 “Truly I tell you, this generation will certainly not pass away until all these things have happened. 33 Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words will never pass away.

    BEING READY

    Matthew 25:1

    JESUS: “At that time the kingdom of heaven will be like ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. 2 Five of them were foolish and five were wise. 3 The foolish ones took their lamps but did not take any oil with them. 4 The wise ones, however, took oil in jars along with their lamps. 5 The bridegroom was a long time in coming, and they all became drowsy and fell asleep.

    6 “At midnight the cry rang out: ‘Here’s the bridegroom! Come out to meet him!’

    7 “Then all the virgins woke up and trimmed their lamps. 8 The foolish ones said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil; our lamps are going out.’

    9 “‘No,’ they replied, ‘there may not be enough for both us and you. Instead, go to those who sell oil and buy some for yourselves.’

    10 “But while they were on their way to buy the oil, the bridegroom arrived. The virgins who were ready went in with him to the wedding banquet. And the door was shut.

    11 “Later the others also came. ‘Lord, Lord,’ they said, ‘open the door for us!’

    12 “But he replied, ‘Truly I tell you, I don’t know you.’

    13 “Therefore keep watch, because you do not know the day or the hour.

  • kind of a dumb poll…im not a christian because to be a christian i have to believe that jesus christ is coming back and i cant do that since its impossible for him as a dead guy to do that..if i could just follow teaching and be a christians i would be ok but the christian and i mean all i know say i must believe that jesus christ is coming back…… bogus lies built on bogus lies

  • DID YOU KNOW ITS CHRISTIANS WHO LEAD THE USA IN CHILD RAPE ? IF YOU TELL A CHRISTIAN THAT FACT THEY BRING UP MUSLIMS BEHEADING PEOPLE HUH ? MUSLIMS DONT LEAD THE USA IN CHILD RAPE THE CHRISTIANS DO AND THEY HAVE FOR OVER 200 YEARS IN A ROW..IN THE USA THE CHRISTIANS ARE FAR AND AWAY MUCH MORE DANGEROUS TO OUR KIDS THAN MUSLIMS OR ANY OTHER RELIGION…RAPE IS RAPE,CHRISTIANS MIGHT NOT BEHEAD BUT THEY RAPE ALOT OF KIDS…ISIS ISNT RAPING ANY AMERICAN KIDS

  • WHY DO PEOPLE “FALL AWAY”?

    The Scriptures answer this question without difficulty by a parable from Jesus………..

    MATTHEW 13:3

    JESUS: “A farmer went out to sow his seed. 4 As he was scattering the seed, some fell along the path, and the birds came and ate it up. 5 Some fell on rocky places, where it did not have much soil. It sprang up quickly because the soil was shallow. 6 But when the sun came up, the plants were scorched, and they withered because they had no root. 7 Other seed fell among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. 8 Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop—a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. 9 Whoever has ears, let them hear.”

    10 The disciples came to him and asked, “Why do you speak to the people in parables?”

    11 He replied, “Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them. 12 Whoever has will be given more, and they will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what they have will be taken from them. 13 This is why I speak to them in parables:

    “Though seeing, they do not see;
    though hearing, they do not hear or understand.
    14 In them is fulfilled the prophecy of Isaiah:

    “‘You will be ever hearing but never understanding;
    you will be ever seeing but never perceiving.
    15 For this people’s heart has become calloused;
    they hardly hear with their ears,
    and they have closed their eyes.
    Otherwise they might see with their eyes,
    hear with their ears,
    understand with their hearts
    and turn, and I would heal them.’
    16 But blessed are your eyes because they see, and your ears because they hear. 17 For truly I tell you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it.

    18 “Listen then to what the parable of the sower means: 19 When anyone hears the message about the kingdom and does not understand it, the evil one comes and snatches away what was sown in their heart. This is the seed sown along the path. 20 The seed falling on rocky ground refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. 21 But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. 22 The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful. 23 But the seed falling on good soil refers to someone who hears the word and understands it. This is the one who produces a crop, yielding a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown.”

  • Suffering and death has been the driving force for most religions. We need help for death seems to have the last word. I also wonder about having to eat living things to live. All rather bizarre but is reality for us Earthlings.

    I also wonder where life came from, for all life comes from something living.

    Here is an interesting article which helps us wonder: https://theamericanscholar.org/a-new-theory-of-the-universe/#.V-dxuPDR_IU

    The events of history and its fulfillment in Christ with the openness to wonder is where I stand. I have no place else to go for it does not give death and suffering the last word but addresses it.

  • We must be humble and mature as we grow. That is what the youth do, wonder and create new paradigms for themselves closer to Beauty, Goodness and Truth, hopefully.

    Suffering and death has been the driving force for most religions. We need help for death seems to have the last word. I also wonder about having to eat living things to live. All rather bizarre but is reality for us Earthlings.

    I also wonder where life came from, for all life comes from something living.

    Here is an interesting article which helps us wonder: https://theamericanscholar.org

    The events of history and its fulfillment in Christ with the openness to wonder is where I stand. I have no place else to go for it does not give death and suffering the last word, but addresses it.

  • Did you find the terms ” dark matter ” and ” dark energy ” in one of your holy books ? ” How do you know to use them ?

    .

  • One cannot compare theology with science, and philosophy.

    Theology deals with spiritual matters….the supernatural. Comparing God the Creator’s omniscience with the limits of the created, finite human mind is laughable !
    There is a difficulty about disagreeing with God. He is the source from which all your reasoning power comes. One could not be right and God wrong any more than a stream can rise higher than its own source.

    False science and false philosophy always disqualify themselves by their offhanded dismissal of theory alternatives.

  • Sooo, Ben, with all that you have written….. what can you tell us about YOURSELF? Do you believe in a God? What kind of a God? How is your God identified. Name?
    No sophistry please, just direct germane answers. Thank you.

  • Asking for consideration would be an exercise in futility on the grounds that the atheist will always offhandedly reject your “evidence” since they do not have a logical; percerption of theory alternatives that follow the convention of rational thinking.

  • You are correct that “faith” is the prime mover regarding one’s trust in a merciful and loving God that sacrificed His Son to atone for the sins of all mankind.

    “Faith” is not a philosophy that someone decides to adopt. It is a gift from God as a result of the Holy Spirit’s conviction in one’s heart that Jesus Christ made us acceptable in God’s eyes through His forgiveness through Christ’s redemptive work.

    “The answer is out there, Neo, and it’s looking for you, and it will find you if you want it to.” ~ Trinity, The Matrix

  • Seems odd that this “gift” from god is almost always christian in christian countries. islamic in islamic countries, hindu in hindu countries, etc.

    I’ll think you’ll find that “faith” IS something we decide to adopt if we wish to have a decent social and work life and not get pestered…I mean “ministered” to by annoying self appointed god botherers.

    It’s only in mostly secular european countries where you can dispense with such nonsense and not have to tell other that you are a christian, muslim, jew, etc to avoid being treated as a social pariah. I live in the UK and here nobody cares whether you are religious or not.

  • For me, evolution is incompatible with the myth of a loving god. That’s me.

    Millions of sincere christians are able to reconcile scientific reality with
    their christian belief. The human mind is fully able to hold and cherish incompatible beliefs..

  • Perhaps if an adherent of any one of the 3000 or so gods worshipped by humans at some time or other could provide evidence that god exists, much less has thoughts relevant to our planet, we could discuss what god thinks. Until then, I’ll stick with science and reality.

    There are plenty of humans since the dawn of time telling others what “god thinks”. In a shocking coincidence, god always agrees with the speaker, with an added bonus that what god thinks tends to provide power or wealth to the speaker. Amazing, huh?

    God thinks women shouldn’t vote. God thinks women must be subservient to men.
    God thinks blacks should remain enslaved.
    God thinks you should send your rent money to me so he can show you his blessing.
    Gays make me uncomfortable so god clearly wants gay marriages to be deprived of legal representation.
    God wants Europeans to conquer Native Americans and wipe out their culture and language and enslave anyone left alive.
    God thinks you should be tied to a pole and burned alive for holding the wrong religious belief.
    God wants us to use the authority of our secular government to make other people’s kids pray to our god.
    God wants monuments to my religious belief on government property that belongs to everyone. God would be pissed if you put a monument to a different religious belief on government property that belongs to everyone.
    God wants the person who agrees with me to be president.

    Quite frankly, anyone who claims to know what “god thinks” is a fraud.

  • ‘Suffering and death has been the driving force for most religions.”

    On this we agree. The powerful have long used religion to placate the poor and enslaved. Priests use fear of death to gather wealth.

  • I cannot refute the unknown, but I can easily refute what theists claim they know, and unless they claim to know they cannot define god. Besides, they usually try to define god as outside of logic, which means by their own definition their god is illogical.
    Not a one of them has a credible claim to knowledge, and in this age where I can say so without being burned at the stake for heresy, it is little wonder that religion is dying.

  • Your first assumption, of course, is that atheists are just like religionists. Your second assumption that rational means uncritical acceptance of information just because it’s in a book that someone says is the word o’ God,

  • If I have time I will, but it won’t be today. But looking at your previous comment to me, why should I bother? you’ve already told me you know all there is to know about me.

  • A scientist friend read this article and said, “I find this conclusion a bit daft: “That’s where the entree is,” he said. “There is still an awareness that there is a God and the Christian’s job is now to explain who that God is and what he has done for them.” I feel like I’ve grown into a relationship with God, and it’s personal. The last thing I need is someone who thinks they need to explain it to me.”

    My response: I’m a Christian who feels no need to explain anything – I’d rather just journey along with you.

    I think that’s the progressive Christian way.

    Roger Wolsey, author, “Kissing Fish: christianity for people who don’t like christianity”

  • dear, I am an ex-monk and ex-priest, other than Saul’s vision in Acts, there is nothing where they ever met and talked face to face. Jesus taught him nothing, as he did the other Apostles and yet, Paul acts like he is was the only true Apostle and his thoughts pretty much took over the western Church.

  • Your version of Christianity is incompatible with honesty or rational thought. You have no valid criticism of evolution besides it not making you feel special. The overwhelming majority of Christendom does not share your cognitive impairment on the subject. Including its largest sect.

  • If there was credible challenges to Evolution coming from the scientific community in methodologically sound research, you would be able to cite to it directly. The proponent would be world famous for their work.

    And at no point would any such work be support for Creationism. Creationism isn’t science. Its just a dishonest framing for mythology used to browbeat people into belief in Fundamentalist Christianity.

    “Finally science has no clue or at least no agreement as to what caused the big bang to happen ”

    But at no point does that mean one has to accept the answer, “God did it”. Open questions in science means more research is needed.

    “This could get very deep but let me just say that science which knows relatively little of what can be known has created nearly as many myths as there are in various religious sacred texts”

    Actually that is a very shallow and facile view of science. There are no myths in science. Your inability to understand a scientific issue or the fact that it leaves questions open do not make something a myth.

    If your religion is in conflict with science, it means you are too immature and too dishonest to understand the strengths of either.

  • Right. Scientific knowledge is objectively credible. One does not believe in its findings. One simply accepts it as the best evidence available.

    Nobody has to accept ideas in philosophy or theology. There is no knowledge imparted in those disciplines. Simply beliefs and ways to look at beliefs. It will always be “your mileage may vary”. Pretensions to the contrary is pure dishonest prattling.

    “There is a difficulty about disagreeing with God. He is the source from which all your reasoning power comes.”

    If you chose to believe that. Nobody is compelled to do so.

    “False science and false philosophy always disqualify themselves by their offhanded dismissal of theory alternatives.”

    Sounds like you want to push some grade A nonsense and don’t like the idea of rational proof or disagreement.

  • baloney First of all, I did not say he was taught like the other apostles. Your error. But he was taught by Jesus.
    Like I offered, here are the scripture:
    Galatians 1:12 – 11For I certify to you, brothers, that the gospel I preached is not devised by man. 12 I did not receive it from any man, nor was I taught it; rather, I received it by revelation from Jesus Christ.

    Galatians 1:15 But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace, 16 to reveal His Son in me, that I might preach Him among the Gentiles, I did not immediately confer with flesh and blood, 17 nor did I go up to Jerusalem to those who were apostles before me; but I went to Arabia, and returned again to Damascus.
    (edit)
    1 Corinthians 7:12 -King James Bible
    But to the rest speak I, not the Lord: If any brother hath a wife that believeth not, and she be pleased to dwell with him, let him not put her away. (edit)

    Also, Saul did not have a “vision” on the Damascus Road. He met the Lord and the Lord blinded him. FYI.

  • Without the big bang there would have been no evolution. I understand the general consensus is that all of evolution is factual. I accept much of evolution but some of it is full huge gaps in logic and proof. And have read a number of treatises both for and against evolution. I also know too many PhD.s and they don’t impress me. The old saying that PhD stands for Piled Higher and Deeper unfortunately has a lot of truth to it.

  • I thought every semi-educated person knew of dark energy and dark matter. But then I also thought that every semi- educated person knew that Lucy the missing link has never been found.

  • Not all. We have to admit death is pretty equal. A lot of questions everyone has; just have communion with that that holds you in existence and you are close to all existence.

    Humility is key, no man knows the answers, but you do have life which is an answer in itself, right there.

  • I don’t agree with creationism and I think the theory of evolution has huge gaps of logic. Since we can’t research the past, we theorize. It all comes down to each side trying to out logic the other about things which will forever remain a conundrum. Which of course leaves us free to believe whatever we choose.

  • Science, theology, and philosophy all have the most important single thing in common – all are seeking answers to things which are unknown. Science seeks in the material world, theology in the metaphysical, and philosophy tries to apply logic to either or both. In my opinion none of them are any more correct than the other in general. We do ourselves a disservice to believe one is preeminent and thus ignore the others.

  • There is the rub we don’t understand God. The vast majority of people don’t even understand much of anything about things we have created, like computers and televisions. Therefor how could we possibly understand those things we haven’t created.
    Your cliche even though commonly used is meaningless other than it is a cleaver turn of words.

  • Now we agree. Any theist who claims to define God or prove the existence of God is either stupid, or delusional, or both. Scientist should stick to exploring the material world, theologians to the metaphysical, and Philosophers should continue to apply logic to both.

  • That’s a cop out. Evolution provides the best and most supportable framework for organizing research in the subject of biology. We can research the past based on evidence left behind. As more evidence is found, clearer pictures form. Of course its never going to be perfect. But perfection is not a reasonable goal in such things.

    “It all comes down to each side trying to out logic the other about things which will forever remain a conundrum. Which of course leaves us free to believe whatever we choose.”

    What other side is there? Right now you have Evolution and the other side being nothing particularly coherent and useful.

  • they don’t “stop believing”
    they were brought up without belief, and only with the going-through-the-motions

  • Yep, although I would prefer it if theology along with gender studies and other bullshit subjects were deligitimized and removed from universities.

  • That does seem to be a typical left wing liberal mindset; eliminate those who, and the things, you disagree with. Hillary Clinton being the iconic example of that mindset.

  • Why would science want to change a mythology, i.e. the evolution hypothesis, which works so well for them to convince people there is no God. Now when the evolutionists find LUCY, the missing link, I will give more credence to a macro-evolutionary hypothesis. It would also be nice if they could prove empirically that life was created in the hostile primordial soup. I really get tired of the stuff they make up. They are almost as bad as the religious zealots n that regard. Clearly the only thing evolution has proven to date with empirical evidence is the natural adaptation of species sometimes with inter species breeding. Beyond that evolution is mere speculation, a good bed time story almost as good as “in the beginning God created”. I find it ironic therefor that science supposedly believes the human species won’t be able to adapt to this particular go around of their climate change projection. Bunch of damn hypocrites.

  • Evolution was elevated from its status of theory to a substantial universally accepted model by the discovery of DNA, which was affirmatively enhanced by Watson and Crick.

    “….free to believe….”
    Faith luxuriates in belief. Science deals with knowledge.

    Belief is a very dangerous concept. Can you give me an example of ” something ” that cannot be validated by the phrase ” I believe….” ?

  • ” Bunch of damn hypocrites. ”

    In an earlier comment to you I wrote :
    ” The deeper you reach – the more exponentially manifest is your ignorance. ”

    Based upon your most recent comment, I am compelled to change my wording from : ” ignorance ” to ” pompous judgemental stupidity “.

    I’ll bet you can see Russia from your back yard….

  • What’s interesting is that if the study showed the opposite, you would still quote scripture and claim your religious view is confirmed.

  • The same evidence exists for not believing in the biblical god as for not believing in Thor, Odin, Zeus, Apollo, Osiris and about 3000 other gods worshipped by humans.

    “I contend we are both atheists, I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”
    …Stephen F Roberts

  • Sandi sounds like a diner waitress asking you whether you want white or whole wheat by addressing you as honey. Typical Christian condescension attempting to mitigate that condescension by offering you a blessing from between clenched teeth….

    Below is Robert Ingersoll whose journey preceded both yours and mine.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    .When I became convinced that the Universe is natural–that all the ghosts
    and gods are myths, there entered into my brain, into my soul, into
    every drop of my blood, the sense, the feeling, the joy of freedom.

    The walls of my prison crumbled and fell, the dungeon was flooded with
    light, and all the bolts, and bars, and manacles became dust. I was no
    longer a servant, a serf, or a slave. There was for me no master in all
    the wide world–not even in infinite space.

    I was free–free to think, to express my thoughts–free to live to my own
    ideal–free to live for myself and those I loved–free to use all my
    faculties, all my senses–free to spread imagination’s wings–free to
    investigate, to guess and dream and hope–free to judge and determine for
    myself–free to reject all ignorant and cruel creeds, all the “inspired”
    books that savages have produced, and all the barbarous legends of the
    past–free from popes and priests–free from all the “called” and “set
    apart”–free from sanctified mistakes and holy lies–free from the fear of
    eternal pain–free from the winged monsters of the night–free from
    devils, ghosts, and gods.

    For the first time I was free. There were no prohibited places in all
    the realms of thought–no air, no space, where fancy could not spread her
    painted wings–no chains for my limbs–no lashes for my back–no fires for
    my flesh–no master’s frown or threat–no following another’s steps- -no
    need to bow, or cringe, or crawl, or utter lying words. I was free. I
    stood erect and fearlessly, joyously, faced all worlds.

    And then my heart was filled with gratitude, with thankfulness, and went
    out in love to all the heroes, the thinkers who gave their lives for
    the liberty of hand and brain–for the freedom of labor and thought–to
    those who fell in the fierce fields of war, to those who died in
    dungeons bound with chains–to those who proudly mounted scaffold’s
    stairs–to those whose bones were crushed, whose flesh was scarred and
    torn–to those by fire consumed–to all the wise, the good, the brave of
    every land, whose thoughts and deeds have given freedom to the sons of
    men. And then I vowed to grasp the torch that they had held, and hold it
    high, that light might conquer darkness still.

    ~Robert G. Ingersoll (1833-1899)

  • My life is meaningful because I am related to the British royal family.

    I’m not actually related to them. But the only way for my life to have meaning is for me to be related to the British royal family. Therefore I believe I am related to the British royal family.

    Wanting to believe something does not make that thing true.

  • Because to date, all the evidence indicates that this is true. If tomorrow scientists find evidence that the laws of nature change, then that evidence would be incorporated into current knowledge. Unlike religion, which by definition cannot adapt to accept new information.

  • The facts are in the bible. Anyone reading the bible w/o being brainwashed by religious instruction as a child can be left with no other conclusion. To become an atheist – read the bible !

  • The ” facts ” are in the bible. Anyone reading the bible w/o being
    brainwashed by religious instruction as a child can be left with no
    other conclusion. To become an atheist – read the bible !

  • The refuge of a scoundrel is to wrap the *flag around him.
    *Baloney has been substituted as a spurious substitute.

  • All my friends are enamored by my sins – and tell me that’s what they love about me !
    ” Those who promised us paradise on earth never produced anything but a HELL.
    Karl Popper

  • JP, please respond to “breed7 ” reply to you beginning with ” The whole thing. ”
    If you don’t, or wont – you are a fraud.

  • So are Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, Sikhism, Zoroastrianism, Jainism, Taoism, FSM – ism etc – even Atheism.
    If you’re not a polytheist – or non-theist you’re deprecating 3/4 of the worlds population.

    How sad….
    Beware the nones. As with televangelist Jim Baker back in the 70’s, they might infect your computer or Iphone and transmute your comments into some semblance of reality.

  • Just look at the evidence of fundamentalists and evangelicals in our midst. For the last 4 decades we have heard nothing but “family values.” For 8 years, we have had as president one of the most moral, decent and family oriented men to ever occupy the white house, and the self proclaimed righteous have mocked and insulted him non stop.

    Now these moral giants have latched on to a bigoted congenital liar who has cheated and lied through his entire career, who glories in adultery and trades his wife in for a younger model every 10 years. His casinos (plural) went bankrupt. He bends the rules to hire immigrants while condemning immigrants. He launches fraudulent businesses and cheats vendors. He eggs on violent supporters.

    And Christians stiil try to sell the fiction that being a Christian is the key to morality. What a laugh. Christians are the most immoral people around. Christianity is about money and the power to control and dominate others. It always has been. Now the true colors are plain for all to see.

  • Faith and belief are fruits of the same tree. Once adopted – there is no end to where the human mind can wander, and bestow truth upon the reality of that journey. You ignobly cannot distinguish between SciFi and the real thing.

    Try LSD, magic mushrooms, hash or any number of other entheogens and you will find truth even in a spec of dust that just landed on the colander of an FSM Pirate.

  • If I write 67 books about Thor, will Thor magically become real?

    According to your 66 books of perfect evidence, Jesus was crucified on Passover and also on the day before Passover. God can’t get the story straight on this one rather important event, not to mention thousands of other contradictions. There is no basis to consider the bible reliable.

  • Also not cool. We have evidence on our side. We don’t need misogynistic crap. Empty head allusions are reasonable, comments about private parts not so much.

  • No. Even christian scholars agree that no part of the NT was written by eyewitnesses. All of the books were written at least decades after Jesus was supposed to have lived in a language his followers would not have known. And all of the gospels include added text not found in earliest versions.

  • Why should subjects like theology, apologetics or homeopathy for that matter have any place in a university?

  • We are all; “born” atheists….
    Religion is a communicable disease inflicted by our parents which we were too young to ward off.

  • To summarize –

    Claimant 1 – A giant 40 foot tall invisible leprechaun lives on top of the US capital.
    Claimant 2 – I see no evidence indicating a giant 40 foot tall invisible leprechaun lives on top of the US capital, therefore I don’t believe it.
    Claimant 1 – You can’t show me evidence that there is no giant 40 foot tall invisible leprechaun living on top of the US capital. So there. This proves it’s true. Checkmate.
    Claimant 2 – Sigh

  • Wonderful response.
    But please understand, the same thing can be said of a family member, friend, pet, plant, piece of art.or music.

    The transcendent abounds far beyond that which religion falsely promises.

    Reply

  • As you are aware – I have responded to you earlier. I offer you a comment by Robert Ingersoll.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    When I became convinced that the Universe is natural–that all the ghosts
    and gods are myths, there entered into my brain, into my soul, into
    every drop of my blood, the sense, the feeling, the joy of freedom.

    The walls of my prison crumbled and fell, the dungeon was flooded with
    light, and all the bolts, and bars, and manacles became dust. I was no
    longer a servant, a serf, or a slave. There was for me no master in all
    the wide world–not even in infinite space.

    I was free–free to think, to express my thoughts–free to live to my own
    ideal–free to live for myself and those I loved–free to use all my
    faculties, all my senses–free to spread imagination’s wings–free to
    investigate, to guess and dream and hope–free to judge and determine for
    myself–free to reject all ignorant and cruel creeds, all the “inspired”
    books that savages have produced, and all the barbarous legends of the
    past–free from popes and priests–free from all the “called” and “set
    apart”–free from sanctified mistakes and holy lies–free from the fear of
    eternal pain–free from the winged monsters of the night–free from
    devils, ghosts, and gods.

    For the first time I was free. There were no prohibited places in all
    the realms of thought–no air, no space, where fancy could not spread her
    painted wings–no chains for my limbs–no lashes for my back–no fires for
    my flesh–no master’s frown or threat–no following another’s steps- -no
    need to bow, or cringe, or crawl, or utter lying words. I was free. I
    stood erect and fearlessly, joyously, faced all worlds.

    And then my heart was filled with gratitude, with thankfulness, and went
    out in love to all the heroes, the thinkers who gave their lives for
    the liberty of hand and brain–for the freedom of labor and thought–to
    those who fell in the fierce fields of war, to those who died in
    dungeons bound with chains–to those who proudly mounted scaffold’s
    stairs–to those whose bones were crushed, whose flesh was scarred and
    torn–to those by fire consumed–to all the wise, the good, the brave of
    every land, whose thoughts and deeds have given freedom to the sons of
    men. And then I vowed to grasp the torch that they had held, and hold it
    high, that light might conquer darkness still.

    ~Robert G. Ingersoll (1833-1899)

  • Marinara. Only Marinara, you heathen. What part of Spaghetti do you not understand? Alfredoists belong to the false god Fettuccine, who are damned to be boiled forever.

    Only my God has balls.

  • Please JP – you shouldn’t be talking about critical thinking skills. Religions find that as a form of apostasy. You, with your obedient comments will never be accused of critical thinking,

  • “In addition to a featureless crotch…”

    That’s not to say that the allusion to a hard plastic globe full of empty space did not have some merit.

  • There is a lot of nonsense to unpack there. If a scientific theory is all one needs to support atheism then then it speaks poorly to one’s belief in God. That your religious belief is based entirely on ignorance. It takes a certain level of narcissism to discount established scientific knowledge because you don’t like how it doesn’t make you feel as special as mythology.

    Calling evolution a myth doesn’t make it so. It is a scientific theory. One whose use clearly seems to elude you. It is the framework to interpret biological research. One which has no equal at the present time based on the available evidence.

    There is no such thing as an evolutionist. There are scientists who apply evolution. Belief being an irrelevance as scientific theories. They are accepted based on present knowledge. Shoud evidence point in a different direction, then a new tery will be acceted. So take your sneering “evolution is a myth” and shove it. You clearly don’t know the difference between myth and scientific theory.

    If by Lucy are you referring to the hominid fossil, Peanuts character or awful film with Scarlett Johansen?

    Btw there is no distinction between macro evolution or micro evolution. It’s all evolution. It is only creationists covering up how modern research makes them look foolish. You really have no idea what te Theory of evolution is and appear to be relying on garbage creationist sources for your info. “interspecies breeding” shows ignorance of basic biological terms. A species is a grouping capable of breeding with each other. Groups which cannot are different species.

    I am not going to discuss the matter further with you. It is clear you lack the basic knowledge of the subject you are trying to criticize. Until you educate yourself in a meaningful fashion, there is no point in considering what you say here. Too much time will be taken in correcting your mistakes.

  • Repeating a claim is not proof.

    Think about the nature of evidence that would convince you that Homer’s Odyssey and the pantheon of greek gods are true. Now provide that level of evidence for your god.

    Hint “I’ve got a book” is not evidence.

    Spoiler Alert – there is no evidence.

  • I’m 78 – a first generation Lithuanian. I traveled with my mother to visit her (our) family in Lithuania in Aug of 1981 at the height of the cold war before Reagan and Gorbechev reached any accords on nukes as well as other examples of detente.

    Upon arriving in Moscow – I saw virtually immediately that the USSR was a Potemkin city – it was a house of cards built on the premise, by its masters, that it was a paradise – a workers paradise. I very shortly realized this upon arriving. That it would only be a period of time before this house of cards would crumble of its own weight. It was unsustainable – from within.

    So it is with our ” nones “. They, as I realize, that artificial institutions we see as being timeless offer nothing to those who find meaning in life thru unfettered human communication – as provided with the internet to the rest of the world.

    Artificial institutions are crumbling. Religion is at the forefront of this collapse.

    To answer your question – the ” nones ” are the antidote to the religious crap laid upon us as kids.

    The internet is the greatest avenue to worldwide communication the world has ever known. Communication connotes a transfer of knowledge to the entire world.

    Knowledge is the enemy of religion, The ” nones ” are becoming more and more knowledgeable on a continuum that will achieve the vitiation of religion as presently known.

  • ” Your version of Christianity is incompatible with honesty or rational thought.”

    Please advise which version of Christianity meets your (supposed) prerequisite of ” honesty and rational thought” ?

  • Seek out the ” Universalist Church of America ” in your area. It may provide that which you seek. Good Luck….

  • Personally, I think Paul made up a lot of stuff to make himself feel important. I also don’t think he was a good person and probably also had some major psychiatric problems, but then a lot of his followers do too. Those who try to make people believe in their “holy” book with no other tool than quoting that same book, have a screw loose somewhere.

  • Let’s test your reasoning. Not all of mankind are the children of God.
    2ndly, you certainly would want another human punished forever if they committed such a crime that deserved it. Hitler would be a good example of this.

    God punishes people not for using their freewill but for breaking His law willfully and continually. Do you know that if you sin just 10 times a day, everyday for 50 years you will have committed 182,000 sins?

    If there is no God then your life is ultimately meaningless.

  • You already have proof on multiple levels In such areas as creation, the life of Christ, God’s existence is written in your conscience to name a few. The problem for you is not the evidence but your suppression of the evidence.

  • This would work extremely well with atheism:
    atheist -I believe no gods exist
    Christian- what are your facts that support your assertion?,
    atheist – I just prefer it.
    Christian- so your atheism has no facts that support what you believe. That means its a fantasy. Sigh.

  • cken said “Since we can’t research the past, we theorize.”

    Please read a reliable book on the Theory of Evolution. Science provides a very strong understanding of the history of life on earth.

    Also note that theory has multiple definitions. You used it to mean “guess” which is one of the meanings.

    However, when used by scientists, theory denotes the highest level of certainty. A theory explains all the data and is not contradicted by data. The evidence for evolution is just as strong as the evidence for the Germ Theory of Disease, Atomic Theory, the Theory of Gravity, etc.

  • Another patriarchal oppressor of the White. Damn you to the hell known as lasagna, where you will bake and bake forever, and never be edible.

  • Pretty much all of them except for those dwindling few protestant sects which cling to Creationism.

    For example, the Catholic Church had officially disavowed creationism in the 1960’s under Paul VI and did it again under John Paul II.

    Creationism is just superstition and dishonest discourse with a dollop of apologetics. The pretension of rational discussion but really glorified lying for God.

  • The Theory of Evolution by Means of Natural Selection is a theory not a hypothesis.

    The Theory is supported by evidence from multiple scientific disciplines that demonstrates both that evolution occurs and that Natural Selection is the primary driver.

    The evidence for evolution comes from multiple scientific disciplines including
    – DNA and genetics
    – Embryology
    – Paleontology
    – Geodiversity

    The evidence in any one area would be sufficient to support the Theory of Evolution. Combined, the evidence is overwhelming. Any alternative theory would have to account for all the evidence in each discipline.

    Google transitional species. Learn something about the fossil evidence for evolution. The Wikipedia article is a great place to begin.

    You might even learn that “Lucy” is the nickname given to the fossils discovered in 1974. From Wikipedia “Lucy is the common name of AL 288-1, several hundred pieces of bone fossils representing 40 percent of the skeleton of a female of the hominin species Australopithecus afarensis. … Lucy was discovered in 1974 near the village Hadar in the Awash Valley of the Afar Triangle in Ethiopia …”

    If you are waiting for Lucy to be found, wait no longer.

  • If you start to believe you are one of the Valar, or have the powers of Gandalf, or the sauron was right, then you have had too much Tolkien.

  • Way to miss the point.

    If someone says “I see no evidence to support that claim” they can’t exactly provide evidence, because (duh), they don’t have any evidence.

    It is up to the one making the positive claim to provide the evidence.

    I see no evidence to support the claim that any deity exists, including the one described in the bible and worshipped by christians. I cannot produce evidence that there is no evidence.

    If you claim evidence exists, produce it.

    I do not “prefer” atheism. It is a conclusion resulting from the utter lack of evidence for any religion.

  • If we can’t understand those things which we haven’t created, then we couldn’t have made them. Or, alternatively, how can we possibly understand God, or contain his message to the world in one book, or a fe hundred books written 2000 years ago.

    You are arguing against yourself, and you are losing,

  • I don’t understand why theist keep claiming that atheism is a belief there is no God, when actual atheists keep telling you that it is a lack of belief in God. What you are looking for is an anti-theist. That is someone with a belief about God, which makes it a religion, which makes it exactly like what you believe– a belief system.

    I’m just an atheist about all the gods of men. You are an atheist about all but one of them.

  • The evidence for the Theory of Evolution is found in genetics, atavisms and vestigial traits, paleontology, biogeography, embryology and more.

    One example – Viruses are strands of DNA. Every so often, viral DNA gets implanted in the DNA of a cell. If the cell happens to be an egg or sperm, this random chunk of nonfunctioning DNA will get passed on to offspring. Scientists can trace evolution through these DNA chunks.

    If an insertion happened in an early primate, that exact error will be found in modern primates but not in non-primates. An error in an early vertebrate will be passed on to all vertebrates but not to invertebrates. Evolution can be tracked merely by mapping these DNA errors from species to species. There is no case where common descent is violated, for example by an error appearing in one type of feline and one type of primate but not in the other descendents of the common ancestor of felines and primates.

    Read Evidence of Common Descent on Wikipedia. Google Evidence for Evolution and read the Berkley, Smithsonian and Wikipedia links. Read Why Evolution is True by Coyne.

  • The overwhelming majority of believers claim they not only understand God, they know his intentions. So clearly that they not only act in accordance with them but demand others do the same. Religion supposedly being the shorthand for god’s will. I have yet to see a believer who didn’t claim their belief gives them insight to understanding God in a plain matter of fact manner.

  • The differences being that science actually bothers to make the unknown known. Contributing to our base of knowledge. One cannot do so with philosophy or theology. No knowledge is ever imparted with such things.

    The problem with your criticism of science emphasizing the material world’s that you can’t even show anything but a material world exists. At best it us either faith or baseless musings. Science has to be accepted, anything outside of “the material world” not so much.

  • You are very confused, neither Jesus or Saul were in Arabia. As I said before, there is no record of them ever having met at at any time. And Saul’s conversion event was a vision, most likely just a hallucination of some sort.

  • If “evolution is incompatible with the myth of a loving god”, then evolution is incompatible — DIRECTLY incompatible, in fact — with John 3:16, the text that offers the Gospel of Jesus Christ itself. Hence evolution is necessarily incompatible with Christianity.

    You say that “the human mind is able to hold and cherish incompatible beliefs”, but we humans normally call that situation “syncretism” or “cognitive dissonance” or simply “both.” What we humans DON’T call it, is “compatible beliefs.”

    You also claim that “Millions of sincere Christians are able to reconcile scientific reality (i.e. “evolution”, correct?) with their Christian belief.” But you are also aware that Ad Populum arguments are severe logical fallacies (“Millions of flies eat s**t; millions of flies can’t be wrong; therefore it’s okay for humans to eat s**t.”)

    So honestly, evolution is incompatible with Christianity, wouldn’t you agree?

  • Evolution is true. It is a fact. The Theory of Evolution by Means of Natural Selection is the one best explanation of the facts.

    As far as I’m concerned, the fictitious genocidal maniac described in the bible is neither loving or real.

    I don’t care whether or how christians reconcile their religion with reality as long as they don’t try to teach creationism nonsense in public schools. I know that many people who identify as christians also accept the truth of Evolution. This doesn’t bother me.

  • Yes, but most christians still leave room for special intervention by God or declare that people didn’t evolve. We’re spehshul. Utter nonsense, but some acknowledgement of reality is better than none.

  • Not really. The majority of the sane, honest Christians simply go with “God made evolution happen” or “Evolution is a natural process created by God”. Old Earth Creationism, don’t dispute scientific evidence and simply claim that God made it possible.

  • And then I became a Christian and got smart. Atheism is stupid-think. It makes claims it cannot support. It give any guidance in life. It cannot condemn evil.

  • Hey, I understand. King Nebuchadnezzar felt the same way about things.

    When the three Hebrew boys balked at bowing down to King Nebbie’s idol-statue, Nebbie courteously said that they were free to believe anything they wanted, AS LONG AS they acknowledged that Nebbie’s godhood was “true” and “a fact” (to borrow your terms) — by publicly bowing down like everybody else, like every other religion, in front of Nebbie’s idol-statue.

    Now bowing to Nebbie’s idol was NOT compatible with bowing to the God of Israel. But it didn’t matter to the king “whether or how” the three boys “reconciled their religion with reality”, AS LONG AS they bowed down to Nebbie’s statue. Just publicly agree that Nebbie’s “reality” overruled the Bible’s reality, that’s all.

    After all, everybody else “accepted the truth of” King Nebbie’s godhood and bowed down, just as everybody today “accepts the truth of Evolution.” So the three Hebrew boys must bow too, Nebbie said, or else burn.

    Gotta stop there for now. But make no mistake: King Nebbie is still alive today. He still demands that everybody bow or burn. But lately he decided to do a name change. It now sounds something like “King DARWIN.”

  • Ok. Can you tell me how evolution “knew” when to create hearts and brains in advanced living creatures?
    How did evolution or whatever force of nature create the first DNA molecule? Where does the information for the first dna come from?

  • Of course it is. Science can only assume that the laws of nature are the same throughout the universe at all times and places. This can never be proven but is believed to be true by faith.

  • I didn’t miss the point. I showed you simply what the main problem with atheism is. It has not facts to support it. Its a fantasy.

    There is plenty for God but you choose to ignore it. You never bring any counter facts against the evidence.

  • The two theories are not related nor intrinsically linked to each other. Not even in the same field. One does not affect the validity of the other.

    ” but some of it is full huge gaps in logic and proof”

    Which you cannot seem to provide examples of for some reason. Nor have they been noted by the multitude of scientists working in the fields relating to Evolution for the last century.

    “I also know too many PhD.s and they don’t impress me.”

    Unless you happen to hold one in biology, your opinion of such things isn’t worth squat. I would love to see what passes for a “treatise against evolution” in your eyes. Why do I have the feeling it is some nonsense by someone without a drop of education or experience in the fields which apply the theory?

  • The exact same proof that theists have for their god. But I am playing the part of a theist here. Disprove the existence of Andy the Aardvark.

    Being asked to do that is ridiculous – and when theists demand that atheists need to disprove the existence of their god – it is just a ridiculous.

    Burden of proof is on the person making a positive claim. Claims like ‘God exists’ or ‘Jesus is going to return soon’.

  • Then why bring up Zeus if you don’t think he exist?

    I have no reason to think he exist. Give me some evidence and we can discuss it.

  • http://www.jewishgen.org/ForgottenCamps/Exhib/HowtoEngl.html
    Although the link ostensibly is about Holocaust deniers, they also point to examples of behavior for BS artists of all stripes online

    1. Creamed Mush with Fog Sauce
    — Never provide evidence for your assertions. In fact, respond to
    demands for evidence the way Dracula responds to crucifixes. Do anything
    you can to avoid it. Throw insults. Change the subject. Obfuscate.
    Laugh derisively. Claim you already gave the evidence or that someone
    else did. But never provide any evidence yourself (unless you provide an
    incomplete or incomprehensible citation along with it).

  • Its in various books such as
    “Everyone has an Invisible Aardvark” by W. Smithers
    “Where is your Invisible Aardvark” By I.P Freely

    He gave the evidence to you! You missed it somewhere.

  • Are these books considered historical or scientific by scholars? Did the authors claim to be writing about something that is true in real world? If so, what facts did they produce that showed this was a true picture of the world? Need examples for this.

  • First lets start with your evidence for the existence of Andy the Aardvark in our world. What facts do you have that Andy exist? What facts can we check?

  • Scholars of invisible aardvarks. They are plentiful. They study for years to develop their ideas about the invisible aardvarks and debate it amongst themselves rigorously. There are even schools to discuss the meaning of these invisible aardvarks upon society. The anti-aardvark crowd are too hung up with their rational and materialistic modes of thinking to understand the truth about such things.

    “If so, what facts did they produce that showed this was a true picture of the world? Need examples for this.”

    I did that already. I showed my proof. You missed it. These scholars proved through their rigorous debate and discussion that belief in the invisible aardvarks is not only true, but logical and rational. Your failure to understand this is a moral failure. You just oppose such belief because it permits you license to deny invisible aardvarks and do whatever you want without regard to them.

    I am still waiting for people to prove this for the Bible. Instead its loaded with poor geography, silly ideas about cosmology, poor history and a ton of events which could not possibly have happened.

  • How about you start with your proof for the existence of God? Its the older claim. I am sure you have some form of proof outside of the Bible. A book whose credibility is only a function of preexisting belief.

  • Only if you can prove the gospels are credible. Which you can’t. Not only does it describe events which could not have happened, it was not written down contemporaneously, nor could be corroborated outside of its own writings.

    “Where are the facts that support atheism being true?”

    The fact that you have no credible proof for the existence of God.

  • Name some scholars that believe that invisible aardvarks exist. What proof do they give for their existence? Give me some examples.

  • My stories about how Andy changed my life! I mean, without Andy my life would have no purpose. And when I finish my book containing the Word Of Andy you should have all the proof you need!

    That seems to be the only evidence Christians can muster for their god…so why should I have anything more than they do?

  • Already done that. Its up to the atheists now to give some positive proof for the non-existence of God. This atheists needs to show why anyone should atheism seriously given that there are no facts for it being true. Maybe you can be the first atheist I have talked to who will give me some facts for atheism being true.

  • All you have to do is google them. The scholars have been clear on the subject for centuries. Who are you to dispute such findings with your lack of education in the belief? Your ignorance is clearly apparent with such questions!*
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .

    *btw how thick are you? You know you are being trolled using the same exact arguments people use to claim God exists, right?

  • The reason I bring up Zeus is there is just as much evidence he exists and is a god as the god Christians worship.

    Do you think the Christian God exists? If so, why? What evidence can you provide for this beings existence?

  • Now I have a bit of time to answer.

    I don’t believe in any God. I used to, when I was a child, as a Jew, and then as a young man, as an almost-a-Christian. But the Judaism lost its appeal due to several incidents occurring in religion classes and with my cantor around my bar mitzvah. In my almost a Christian phase, I realized that the central message of Christianity. John 3:16, cracked under the weight of its internal contradictions. Love isn’t love when it declares “believe or burn.”

    So I gave up on religion. I don’t think it has any answers to anything, except how to keep a priest employed, a church building maintained, and how to gain power over the lives of others. I have no belief in God, because I ultimately concluded that the ultimate answers to ultimate questions ultimately don’t matter. And that particular question matters least of all.

    As the only God I vaguely believe in, Koschei the Deathless, who made things as they are, says: “what are your beliefs to me, Who Made Things As They Are?” But that’s why I don’t really believe in Koschei, either, because He Made Things As They Are. My beliefs are irrelevant.

    What do I believe in? I sense that there is something outside of me that is far greater than me, and I’ve had a few experiences in my life that confirm that idea to me. It might be the universe itself, the cosmic all, the eternal goof. I have no idea, but I don’t believe it matters what i believe about it. I’ve also had “life after death” experiences regarding my late partner, but I have no idea if they represented any direct experience of anything. Other people also had those experiences of him, independent of me.

    What do I believe in? What you put out into the universe is what comes back at you from the universe. No rewards, no punishments, just consequences. As I always tell my husband, and as he is beginning to understand after all of years together: be positive, be loving, and trust the universe to return that back to you. I therefore believe that it is a good thing to be kind, generous, concerned, giving, and positive, to treat others well and as I would like to be treated. My life has shown me that I get back what I put out there. I believe that good is better than evil because it’s nicer, and that’s why I believe that rotten theology produces rotten fruit. Or would if I thought theology wasn’t anything more than wishful thinking given a thin veneer of rationality and reasonableness.

    I believe that lying distorts the fabric of reality, whatever that may mean, the bigger the lie, the bigger the distortion, the more upheaval as reality tries to right itself. Thus, one of the really big lies, that the Jews killed Jesus, led to centuries of antisemitism and ultimately, to the murder of 6 million of us. The lies about gay people have also caused untold harm to innocents. And on and on and on.

    What I don’t believe is that God who made the universe, if such exists, who made everything from the Higgs boson to the entire universe, is obsessed about what I do with my dangly bits. The only message I have ever received from this God is what I have stated: what you put out into the universe comes back to you.

    I hoe that answers your questions.

  • It is proof in the sense that its shows the effects of their belief. It does not show necessarily that the belief is true.

  • You gave as much proof for God as I did for the aardvarks. There is an entire field of study of the subject with books describing the truth of such things. You haven’t disproved such claims. You haven’t shown that they do not exist.

    “This atheists needs to show why anyone should atheism seriously given that there are no facts for it being true.”

    No facts are needed. Its not a positive belief. Its a belief of absence. If you can’t prove God exists, then that is all the atheist needs.

    Just as the burden is on me to prove the aardvarks, it is on you to prove God. Obviously you don’t have to prove aardvarks do not exist. I don’t have to prove God does not exist.*

    Obviously burdens of proof are something which purveyors of nonsense avoid like the plague.

    From the same site I cited to earlier which applies to purveyors of online BS:
    http://www.jewishgen.org/ForgottenCamps/Exhib/HowtoEngl.html

    2. Heads-I-Win-Tails-You-Lose —
    Demand that all evidence for the [one’s opponent] be proved genuine (dodging any discussion of what that proof would consist of), and also demand that all your unsubstantiated assertions be proved false. That way, you never bear any burden of proof.

    *I should not have broken character so quickly here. 🙂

  • “It is proof in the sense that its shows the effects of their belief.” That is proof of nothing. The only thing it demonstrates is that the subject lives according to that particular belief (and Christians are generally total failures in that regard).

    “It does not show necessarily that the belief is true.” I agree – anecdotes are not evidence of anything at all.

  • It is proof just as actions prove that a man proves he loves his wife by doing things for her.

    Show me from atheism how it leads to a better and hopeful life.

  • You need first to show with facts and sound reasons why we should believe invisible aardvarks exist.
    You said it well–“Obviously burdens of proof are something which purveyors of nonsense avoid like the plague.”

  • See what I mean? You guys just do not have the ability to grasp the concept behind ‘burden of proof’.

    I never claimed atheism leads to a “better and hopeful life”. There is absolutely nothing for me to “prove”.

    Since you seem to be a Christian, can you:

    1. Define your God.
    2. Show any empirical evidence the this God exists?

    Inquiring minds want to know!

  • I never said that atheism “leads to a “better and hopeful life”. Rather I asked you to show me that it does. One of the many effects and implications of atheism is that it leads to despair for those who take it to its logical conclusions.

    God is immaterial, eternal and all-powerful. This evidence can be seen in creation itself because creation is best explained by this God as its Creator. Only an all-powerful Being could create our universe.

    Now you know.

  • I showed as much for Brads aardvarks as you did for God. The difference being you were serious and Brad and I were just parroting your argument and proof for satiric effect. Really, how thick are you that you do not pick up on this?

    I can’t help it if you are a hypocrite who demands proof of others and gives none for their own position.

  • So why am I not in despair? Or any other atheist I know? That is a very arrogant and ignorant conclusion – but a typical one Christians often make. Why should not believing in a god lead to despair? You have no idea what you are talking about.

    “This evidence can be seen in creation itself because creation is best explained by this God as its Creator. Only an all-powerful Being could create our universe.”

    Actually no. The creation of the universe is best explained by the inflationary big bang theory, the diversity of life by evolutionary theory and so on.

    Natural theology has been dead and buried for years. You are going to do much better than committing the logical fallacy of begging the question. As well as the argument from personal incredulity.

    So again, please come up with some empirical evidence for your God. I will help you a little…here is the definition of ’empirical’.

    em·pir·i·cal

    adjective

    based on, concerned with, or verifiable by observation or experience rather than theory or pure logic.

    “they provided considerable empirical evidence to support their argument”

  • Lol! Who is the one with the actual belief in an invisible sky daddy here?

    You are pathetic. You almost learned something. But self awareness is sorely lacking.

  • The reason you are not in despair is because you have not thought out the implications of your atheism and where it leads you.

    Where is the proof of this “inflationary big bang theory, the diversity of life by evolutionary theory and so on”?

  • Anybody who thinks God’s message is just the bible is a fool and I would leave that group also. And yes I know many right wing Christians believe God only “speaks” through the Bible and I feel sorry for them.

  • I know I call them the myopic pre-science Christians. They read the words in the bible and don’t understand the meanings intended to be conveyed. If you only know God thorough the lens of the bible you don’t know God. There many good teachable concepts in the Bible but some of it is an allegory wrapped in a mystery. However the concept of God is not one of them. The descriptions of God in the bible are limited to to the knowledge of man two to four millennia ago. Today we have a better understanding of metaphysical concepts but we still don’t know what God is made of and probably never will. Even scientists now generally believe there was some kind of energy which preceded the big bang. Was is that energy God. Who knows, but it does agree with a more correct interpretation of John 1:1 which opens up a clearer understanding of the metaphysical.

  • “The reason you are not in despair is because you have not thought out the implications of your atheism and where it leads you.”

    And Christians call atheists arrogant. If you had bothered to read any of my other comments you would have noticed I have a seminary degree. Believe me, I have given the topic far more thought than you ever have. If fact, I doubt, given your ignorance about atheism, that you have given the topic ANY thought. And the freaking arrogance of a complete stranger claims to know what I have thought out or not.

    The only consequences of not believing in your god is having to explain logic and reasons to willfully ignorant Christians like you. Otherwise it is a pretty great experience.

    “Where is the proof of this “inflationary big bang theory, the diversity of life by evolutionary theory and so on”?”

    Sorry – I not not going to do the research for lazy Christians. You have the internet and Google – read for yourself…it is explained where a 5 year old can comprehend it.

    Where is the empirical evidence for your God? When are you going to provide some actual proof? Quit dodging and let’s see some evidence…or you can just admit you do not have any.

  • All I know is if you have had a Near Death Experience or an Out of Body experience or your life has been spared by something that defies all logic or scientific explanation, you start to believe. Primarily you believe there is some kind of ethereal conscious entity which doesn’t need a carbon based life form for it’s existence, which also makes you believe in a God. Most religions refer to that ethereal conscious energy entity as a soul. Once you have experienced that state of being you read sacred religious and some scientific and philosophical writings in a different light. Science struggles with these things, but theoretical quantum physics is getting closer to an understanding.

  • How do you keep your secret decoder ring so shiny?

    God is the product of religious belief. Assertions to the contrary tend to go towards conflation or just silliness. Understanding of the metaphysical is like understanding of invisible faeries all around us. Anyone can claim to do so and nobody had a good reason to take it seriously.

  • Science helps us understand concepts expressed in the sacred texts. Keeping in mind those texts were written thousands of years ago using the knowledge we had then to convey those concepts. To read those sacred texts word for word and take them literally makes many of them laughable and does nothing to enhance your understanding of the metaphysical.

  • Of course there are facts. The life of Christ and creation itself are some of the facts.

    On the other hand, there are no facts, none, that shows atheism to be true. Thats why you have never produced one fact for your position because there is none.

  • If there was no big bang there would have been no evolution possible. If we can’t understand what started all of this then the theory of evolution is little more than a fun scientific exercise giving us no insight into metaphysical concepts. Many want to use evolution simply to say how wrong Genesis is. Maybe Genesis is wrong or partially wrong and evolution is right or partially right but that doesn’t negate the existence of a God. When we understand the cause of the big bang or how it was possible for life to be created in a hostile primordial soup can we definitively say there is or is not a God. Science has written much speculation about those two questions, but there is no definitive answers yet.
    I have several degrees including a BS and MS in science. In fact my masters thesis was published in a highly respected scientific journal. So I say from first hand experience there are many PhD.s who aren’t that bright. I have read published scientific papers where the research data proved one thing and the researcher drew an opposite conclusion and those papers passed peer review. So I am clinically skeptical of all scientific research despite whatever the prevailing consensus may be. I believe evolution in its most general sense to be reasonably true, but there have been many papers published which are little more than speculation in an attempt to fill in the gaps. They get published because scientists are so anxious to end this “nonsense” about God they allow these speculative writings to pass peer review.

  • “The reason you are not in despair is because you have not thought out the implications of your atheism and where it leads you.”

    That is pretty funny…I have given that question far more thought than you ever had…pretty much what a seminary degree requires. And the unbelievable arrogance of that statement! You somehow magically know exactly what I have thought about and what I have not! I did not know you were a mind reader!

    “Where is the proof of this “inflationary big bang theory, the diversity of life by evolutionary theory and so on”?”

    A simple Google search away from your fingertips. I am not going to do your research for you if you are too lazy to do it for yourself.

    So, once again. Where is the empirical evidence for your God? Do you have any proof or are you going to dodge the question like most of the theists I have engaged before you? Either produce some empirical evidence or just admit you have none.

  • “If there was no big bang there would have been no evolution possible.”

    Untrue. All there has to be is an earth existing for evolution. What theory covers how it came to be is simply a given as the only requisite for evolution is that “here” exists and life exists on it. Genesis is myth. Whatever truth one gleans from it is metaphoric and allegorical. It has no value beyond that. Doesn’t even come to the table when it comes to discussion of science. Neither does God. At no point does God ever enter into scientific study.

    “I have several degrees including a BS and MS in science. ”

    But it is obvious none of them are in biology. If so, you would have said that instead of “science”. As biology is the relevant discipline to the subject. An MS does not make you a scientist. A Masters dissertation doesn’t rise to the same level of scrutiny or difficulty as a Doctorate one. At best you could teach a subject at the high school level. Say what you want about PhD’s. they have put in far more work on a given academic subject than you have. There are plenty of delusional types and outright liars from backgrounds in engineering and mathematics who try to tackle evolution. Their skillset and education make them ill suited to deal with the messy nature of biology. Biology is not an analogue to engineering. Biology is chaotic, redundant, full of junk, unstable, always teetering on falling apart.

    “I have read published scientific papers where the research data proved one thing and the researcher drew an opposite conclusion and those papers passed peer review. ”

    Which means absolutely nothing because your education and skills would not even be considered to pass muster as an expert in the field by a layperson perspective. Legal standards are very good at applying criteria to scientific expertise for dissemination to a lay public. A legal definition of an expert witness is about as clear a definition for a lay audience as one gets. You are ill suited to pose significant criticism of evolutionary theory as you lack the basic expertise of its proponents. Without a doctorate, you are simply an amateur with delusions of grandeur. You strike me as one of those types “who know better” but lack the background, skills and experience to make credible claims on a subject.

  • I know how people think. I suspect you do to. Life must be going well for you right now which gives you such confidence. It won’t always be this way. Everyone, who lives long enough will face pain and suffering in life.

    Where is your empirical evidence for atheism? ” Do you have any proof or are you going to dodge the question like most of the theists I have engaged before you? Either produce some empirical evidence or just admit you have none.”

  • I’ve given plenty evidence for the existence of God and you have given nothing for proving atheism true. That tells us its not true but a fantasy.

  • Well, it will either be interesting…

    Or not.

    Since someone else had asked me to state what I believe, it was something I wanted to write anyway.

    We’ll see.

  • Dear Pond Scum with Opposable Thumbs,

    Evolution, the religion of one kind morphing into another through the “magic” of time, is not only certainly completely and totally untrue but not even observable–an absolute requirement of your precious “science.” I suppose you’ll counter with an example of adaptation, not knowing the difference.

    This, coupled with the fact the high priests of Neo-Darwinism abandoned the faith 20 years ago–the chance of organic life emerging from inorganic matter being a confirmed mathematical impossibility (in excess of one chance in 10 to the 50th power)–one wonders how you water carriers sleep at night.

    As for so-called genocide, I think you are a confirmed lover of the material world. Or, how does God inflict pain and suffering on a spirit?

    With the confirmation that the speed of light is not a constant but slowing down and therefore substantially faster in the past, the materialist fools the Bible warned about are erecting new walls to ease that pesky pucker in their “nethers.”

    Nevertheless, good luck to you my friend for when your flesh switches off in the future and your spirit doesn’t, you’ll have just enough time for one last regret. Or did you plan on living forever?

  • Your comment makes no sense.

    If the study was “opposite”(believers on the incline) and Scripture told us about (believers in DECLINE at the last days) , how could I quote Scripture accurately?

  • Opinions aren’t measured by facts.

    Your comments have been ” opinions ” free from the scrutiny of objective examination as all opinions are.

    The bible is a fairy tale – Fact
    Those who join a religion – surrender their ability to think for themselves – Fact
    Atheists, agnostics, freethinkers etc know the bible is a fairy tale – Fact
    Atheists, agnostics, freethinkers don’t surrender their ability to think for themselves to and religion, dogma, cleric or holy man – Fact

  • Not so.
    Ra gives up his life nightly.
    All life on earth – including humans can survive and thrive without jesus.
    No life on earth can survive without Ra….

  • God created Adam and Eve, they are real people, our first parents, and they will be resurrected just as Christ when the first resurrection takes place. Jesus will return to earth to rule and reign, and the wicked will be destroyed. This is what every Christian believes. Evolution is the opposite, not believing any of these words.

  • I understand where you are coming from and do not judge you. I recognize your position as I was there myself.
    I only want to express what I have learned and found to be true based on my experiences in this journey we call “temporal life” as we know it.

    YOU WROTE: “Love isn’t love when it declares “believe or burn.” [sic]

    Written in this way indicates an intimidation, a threat, coercion, or a shakedown….. chose one or all. This is opposite of the truth,
    God’s plan of salvation is not “scaring the “hell” out of people” !

    Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

    Jesus earned for us the forgiveness of sins and that is a free gift with no strings attached. Unconditional.

    Why do some take this free gift and others don’t. I don’t know.
    What I do know is that the HOLY SPIRIT works faith in the hearts of mankind using the Gospel of Jesus Christ and sins forgiven.

    Ephesians 2 “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit [Satan] who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages He might show the incomparable riches of His grace, expressed in His kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

    NOTE: Nowhere does it say anything about people having to work for, do anything, or decide to “believe” and trust in Christ for salvation.
    Being DEAD in sins, man has no ability to believe in their Savior Jesus.
    It takes God the Holy Spirit to provide that gift for one’s heart.

    The “recruiting” of a soul, that is, bringing faith in Jesus Christ into the heart, is totally the work of God the Holy Spirit through the message of the Gospel – the sacrificial redemption of the God-man, Jesus Christ, who fully paid for all of the sins of mankind so we would not have to suffer the penalties of sin. That’s God’s perfect justice and His perfect love. A free gift with no strings attached. Unconditional.

    ◄ 1 Corinthians 12:3 ►
    Therefore I want you to know that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus be cursed,” and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit.

    The existence of God and faith in His son, Jesus Christ, does not need proof. God, through the Holy Spirit, provides His own proof in the heart and soul of the individual where there is never a doubt of who put it there.

  • I understand where you are coming from and do not judge you. I recognize your position as I was there myself.
    I only want to express what I have learned and found to be true based on my experiences in this journey we call “temporal life” as we know it.

    YOU WROTE: “Love isn’t love when it declares “believe or burn.” [sic]

    Written in this way indicates an intimidation, a threat, coercion, or a shakedown….. chose one or all. This is opposite of the truth,
    God’s plan of salvation is not “scaring the “hell” out of people” !

    Romans 5:8 But God demonstrates His own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

    Jesus earned for us the forgiveness of sins and that is a free gift with no strings attached. Unconditional.

    Why do some take this free gift and others don’t. I don’t know.
    What I do know is that the HOLY SPIRIT works faith in the hearts of mankind using the Gospel of Jesus Christ and sins forgiven.

    Ephesians 2 “As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit [Satan] who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages He might show the incomparable riches of His grace, expressed in His kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

    NOTE: Nowhere does it say anything about people having to work for, do anything, or decide to “believe” and trust in Christ for salvation.
    Being DEAD in sins, man has no ability to believe in their Savior Jesus.
    It takes God the Holy Spirit to provide that gift for one’s heart.

    The “recruiting” of a soul, that is, bringing faith in Jesus Christ into the heart, is totally the work of God the Holy Spirit through the message of the Gospel – the sacrificial redemption of the God-man, Jesus Christ, who fully paid for all of the sins of mankind so we would not have to suffer the penalties of sin. That’s God’s perfect justice and His perfect love. A free gift with no strings attached. Unconditional.

    ◄ 1 Corinthians 12:3 ►
    Therefore I want you to know that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus be cursed,” and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit.

    The existence of God and faith in His son, Jesus Christ, does not need proof. God, through the Holy Spirit, provides His own proof in the heart and soul of the individual where there is never a doubt of who put it there.

  • I am not “protesting” or objecting to what anyone has written or believes.
    I am only stating what I believe.

  • YOU WROTE: “What’s interesting is that if the study showed the opposite, you would still quote scripture and claim your religious view is confirmed.”

    Your reply makes no sense.

    If the study showed the opposite (that believers were increasing) , how could I accurately quote the Scriptures that say (believers would DECREASE) in the last days?

  • YOU WROTE: “We do ourselves a disservice to believe one is preeminent…”

    ~~~~~~ In my opinion, we do ourselves a disservice to believe one is NOT preeminent, i.e.; the supernatural, God, soul, spirit.

    Metaphysics is a branch of philosophy – an academic discipline which again, cannot be compared with the supernatural because “philosophy” primarily stems from a finite human study limited to “reality, and existence” and does not do justice to the beliefs of those who understand and believe in their hearts the words of God (the ultimate knowledge) recorded in the Scriptures due to their experiences which become a reality and final authority.

    Considering science, metaphysics, and philosophy are very temporal concepts for a person who will physically die and decay, and that they will do him no good in the future spiritual world of the eternal soul.
    I opine that the study of what the Scriptures have to say about supernatural issues and what will become of the eternal soul is a priority.

  • I have no intentions of directing anything against any person. I only hope to assert the “position” that I am taking in light of the position that the reader is maintaining.

    I hold to the belief that everyone’s beliefs are not to be suppressed or inhibited.

    If I at any time I have given the impression of being an infringement concerning anyone’s judgments and conclusions about anything, I apologize.

    I believe we all should attest to our beliefs and opinions and defend them.

  • YOU WROTE: “Sounds like you want to push some grade A nonsense and don’t like the idea of rational proof or disagreement.”

    ~~~~~~ Wrong perception !

    I WROTE: “”FALSE science and FALSE philosophy always disqualify themselves by their offhanded dismissal of THEORY (emphasis on “theory”) alternatives.”

    I am never opposed to RATIONAL proof or disagreement. Logic requires the inclusion of theory alternatives that possess as much “rational proof” as the THEORIES of the other party, therefore, they are NOT “some grade A nonsense”.

  • I opine that “quantum physics” can never change a heart to trust in Jesus Christ as their personal Savior… that is the work of the Holy Spirit.

  • There is Murphy’s Law and Poe’s Law and Godwin’s Law. I want a Lark’s Law: Sooner or later in every online conversation with a Christian, usually when the Christian has no valid response, the Christian will produce some form of “My god is gonna send you to hell. Nya Nya Na Nya Nya. Then you will see that I’m right. I’m right. I’m right. I’m right. Really I am. And you’re gonna get tortured. Ha Ha. So there!”

    Yawn.

    Perhaps, oh wise one, you can favor us with an explanation on how adaptation differs from evolution. Should be amusing.

    After that I recommend that you read some reliable information about evolution written by scientists who know what they are talking about. Even if you don’t agree, you will at least be able to discuss evolution without appearing ignorant.

    Start with Why Evolution is True by Coyne, Intro to Evolution on Wikipedia and pretty much everything on the National Center for Science Education website.

  • You would just pick a different verse that says the exact opposite. There are plenty to choose from.

    Listen to Christians for a period of time. The number of Christians increases, obviously god is real. The number of Christians decreases, obviously this is god’s plan. Someone who is sick dies – obviously god’s plan. Someone who is sick gets better with the aid of a dozen doctors and 21st century medicine – obviously god’s plan praise jesus.

    It is a giant game of “Heads I win. Tails you lose.”

    Everything is confirmation of preexisting beliefs. It’s amusing. Tiresome, but amusing.

  • “This is what every Christian believes. Evolution is the opposite, not believing any of these words.”

    No, that is just what happens when people fail to understand the nature of allegory and metaphor.

    The overwhelming majority of Christians do not take Genesis 1 as literal, nor believe Adam and Eve are real people. They are honest enough not to reject scientific knowledge in favor of mythology. Same can’t be said of Creationists. Like all Fundamentalists of any religion, they think their self-serving, insane literal reading of scripture is what everyone in the faith believes or must believe.

  • Wow. One should learn about the Theory of Evolution before trying to debunk it, lest one appear ignorant.

    Bonus tip – the Theory of Evolution does not say hearts or brains were suddenly created. Pretty much the opposite.

  • You are giving all the signs of someone trying to push some kind of crackpot ideas. As if being an alternative idea means it has equal merit to an accepted one.

    “Logic requires the inclusion of theory alternatives that possess as much “rational proof” as the THEORIES of the other party, therefore, they are NOT “some grade A nonsense”.”

    But given your prior statements and putting rational proof in quotes, I doubt you will bring anything credible to the table when discussing “alternatives”. You bear all the signs of a BS purveyor.

    We shall see. 🙂

  • I feel the presence of the Aardvark in my life. She guides my steps. Without the Aardvark I would have no sense of morality.

    Now you show me your evidence for being an Aardvark Atheist. Unless you have evidence that the Astounding Aardvark doesn’t exist, you must acknowledge that she is real.

  • First of all, you have no idea what my life has been or is like. I have faced hard time, I have enjoyed good times. I needed no god for either. My strength comes from myself, my spouse and the rest of my family and friends.

    And once again you display you ignorance about the burden of proof. I need no evidence for atheism because atheism makes no positive claim. Atheism is simply the belief that there are no gods. It does not claim that no gods exist in an empirical fashion. I am an agnostic atheist – which means I do not positively know whether a god exists or not – but I do not believe that one exists. And I base that belief on the lack of convincing evidence.

    Theism, however, does make a positive truth claim. That a god does exist.

    So stop trolling an answer my question – where is the proof of your claim?

  • Sorry, but it was the Astounding Aardvark who created everything. All creation confirms her existence. She is all powerful. All other gods are make believe. This is obvious. My book says so.

    Seriously, even atheism leads to despair (it doesn’t), that has no bearing on the existence of a deity. I would be bunches happier if I owned 50 miles of pristine Atlantic coastline. That doesn’t make it true.

    You would feel happier if the universe had a creator to arrange the stars, choose your spouse, find your car keys, and promise to torture anyone who disagrees with you. The fact that you would prefer this doesn’t make true.

  • Newsflash. Darwin was just a scientist. He was a good scientist but he wasn’t superhuman. His books were mostly correct and have been confirmed by subsequent research by thousands of scientists. However, Darwin got some details wrong – things that have been corrected because that’s how science works. And Darwin had no inkling of concepts like genetics which confirm his theories.

    Religion depends on personality. The letters of Paul are important to Christians because they are the letters of Paul. The exact same words attributed to Larry Schmuck in Cleveland Ohio would not carry weight.

    Darwin is admired for his accomplishments but not worshipped. If it came out that Darwin recanted every word and absconded with church funds before moving to the Bahamas to run a brothel, evolution would still be true.

    When something is true, it remains true no matter who believes it.

  • And it is know it all laity who yhink they can speak for a deity that may not even exist who drive people away from religion and faith. If there is a god, a big if in my opinion, I seriously doubt that any mere human being could know it’s nature well enough to make black and white pronouncements as you do. You are the type who uses the Bible as a club to bash people over the head, then threaten them with hellfire and damnation when they recoil from your interpretation of that book. You bring to life that saying,
    “You can safely assume that you’ve created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.” – Anne Lamott

  • Who else in history says so? What nation was created by aardvark?

    Atheism does lead to despair because it means your life is meaningless and without purpose.

    “In a universe of electrons and selfish genes, blind physical forces and genetic replication, some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, nor any justice. The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil, no good, nothing but pitiless indifference.”
    ― Richard Dawkins, River Out of Eden: A Darwinian View of Life

    Just remember that everything you do today, is meaningless and that some day you will be cut off from your loved ones forever and you are one day closer to that event.

  • I don’t need to know the specifics of your life to know you will have great suffering. That is just the nature of life here.

    The atheist bears the burden of proof because atheism is a knowledge claim about reality i.e. no God exist. That claim needs facts from you to support it. Without that, all you have is a preference claim like your favorite flavor of ice cream.

    Let’s apply your reasoning “I do not positively know whether a god exists or not – but I do not believe that one exists. And I base that belief on the lack of convincing evidence.” to scientific claims.
    Black holes and atoms don’t exist because I don’t find the evidence convincing. In fact I don’t believe you exist either. So what proof can you offer me that you exist?

  • Again, you make a statement about atheism in direct contradiction to statements by atheists, which you have declared tyourself not to be.

  • There is no such thing as free thinking if God doesn’t exist. Your “thinking” is just the alignment of the chemicals in your head that make you say and do things. Fact

  • That was a snorer, wasn’t it?

    I think I still have a copy of The Children of Huon. I cannot bring myself to open it. It’s probably been on my shelves for 20 years.

  • Brad certainly thinks he exist. I just want him to prove it to me that he does. I don’t believe he exist because the evidence is not compelling.

  • and yet you continue to respond to a figment of your imagination.
    Now, how does that sound so very familiar?

  • Fanatasy world? where you make a statement about atheists and atheism in direct contravention to their statements about themselves?
    how many angels of irony can dance on the head of a pin?

  • “I don’t need to know the specifics of your life to know you will have great suffering.”

    Gee – when does the suffering start JP? Since you seem to be able to predict the future, I really want to know!

    Did you not even read my comment?

    “The atheist bears the burden of proof because atheism is a knowledge claim about reality i.e. no God exist.”

    Uh, no. You could not be more wrong if you tried.

    Atheism

    Noun

    1. disbelief in the existence of a supreme being or beings.

    That is it. I don’t claim there are no gods as empirical fact. I simply do not believe in any gods. So try again.

    “In fact I don’t believe you exist either. So what proof can you offer me that you exist?”

    Easy – I could, but won’t (because you come off as sort of a nutcase) meet you in real life. But the mere fact I am typing this comment implies that something exists to generate the words.

    But for your imaginary friend – there are no typed comments, no words spoken, no offer to show up in real life, no prayers answered, no miracles performed…no anything.

    “Black holes and atoms don’t exist because I don’t find the evidence convincing.”

    Which means you are either a troll or dumber than a bag of hammers. Because there is observable, empirical evidence for these thing regardless of whether or not you are intelligent enough to comprehend it.

    Neil DeGrasse Tyson says it perfectly…

    “Science is true whether you believe it or not”

    And despite your argument from personal incredulity (the logical fallacy that “I am incapable of understanding, therefore it is not true”) evidence exists for black holes, atoms, neutron stars and lots of other things difficult to observe.

    And the exact opposite is true for your god – there is not a single shred of empirical evidence he/she/it exists.

    So when you can come up with some, or at least gain some comprehension of logic, empiricism and rationality – lease let me know.

    Until then, I have no further time for the willfully ignorant. You keep believing in your imaginary friend and I will keep believing in evidence.

    Good day.

  • “I wanted to believe in some cosmic loving spirit, but no loving god would create a system where nearly every living thing dies of starvation or being eaten alive.”

    That’s because you did not read/understand what the Bible described as the fall.

    The fall created a situation were a much better designed world and human being was no longer connected to God. This is why in this system every living thing dies. And why animals eat other animals and why humans eat the flesh of animals. It is because we are living in a fallen world, not as it was original designed to be and function.

    Feeling and seeing God’s presence in your life is not about belief in him proving himself according to your or anyone else’s definition of what constitutes as proof. If you try to do that, you will never find God. God is not interested in proving himself true, but in you proving yourself true. Most people through their actions and their words never prove themselves fruitful, beyond their own self-serving idea of what it means to be selfless and good. Thusly all their knowledge goes to waste.

    Only when the person has been able to humble themselves, to stop seeing themselves as wise in their own eyes and let go of worshiping knowledge, can God show you higher and deeper truth. On which ever subject. Since your focus is in science, you would make progress by leaps and bounds. But since most scientifically minded individuals have overwhelming amounts of pride, they have to do everything mechanically and in an extremely slow manner, through the scientific method.

    Submission to God is what is missing in strongly reason and logic orientated individuals, they are therefore always only seeing with one eye, only half a being, half a human, always relying upon the knowledge of the world in order to know something. If you could develop the other faculty of faith in God alongside logic, you would move into another order of understanding of reality. Which you now cannot see or believe exists, or even prove in any way, because the very system you are using to prove such a thing, is the very system which by its inherent nature disavows such realities, because a lower order system cannot recognize and address higher order realities/systems. It doesn’t have the capacity to.

    If you go back to the Bible, read what it says, it says that the original creation was good, very good. But after the fall, the entire reality changed. This cannot be understood with current science, because we do not have a science advanced enough to address different levels of reality. Currently science can only address low level reality, which is physical in nature. The evolution happened at this level of reality, but at higher levels of reality, creation occurs more quickly and that is why God can create something from pure thought.

  • There was a reason it was not published in Tolkein’s lifetime. It was the story that was dropped by his publisher, prompting him to write The Hobbit. Sometimes a little editorial discretion benefits us all. 🙂

  • I was quite curious how you would respond to me, though I had a guess. And you didn’t disappoint me.

    Nearly 40 years ago, when I was fighting against one of the earlier anti-gay ballot measures– which we won, despite “god” being on the bigot side of the election– I met a “nice Christian lady” who was one of the more virulently anti-gay people on the other side. She had her long, long list of lies, distortions, half-truths, innuendos, illogics, and fear-mongerings at the ready, every time I came across her. After one of our debates, she came up to me and said, “I’ve heard what you have to say. Here is my card. please write to me. I really care.”

    I took her at her word, and spent some time writing to her. I explained my life as a gay man. I corrected, politely, respectfully and with documentation, the most egregious of the many lies she was telling, pointing out the obvious errors of facts, logic, and experience. These weren’t matters of opinion or interpretation, but FACT. The next time I ran into her, I asked her if she had
    read my letter. Her response:

    “I started to read it, but frankly, I don’t have time to read letters FROM HOMOSEXUALS.” The contempt in her voice was obvious.

    You asked me what I believed, as if you really wanted to know. I took you at your word for it. In your entire response, you spent exactly 21 WORDS ON ME. The rest of it was all about you, and the fully expected attempt to proselytize. You weren’t interested in what I had to say. As with the lady involved, it was just another opportunity for you to spread the word.

    At yet, once again, the word of god failed to reach someone. Flawed messenger or flawed message? How about both? Your contempt was equally obvious, just nicer than hers. So, let me address what you had to say.

    Quoting you quoting me and your response: “YOU WROTE: “Love isn’t love when it declares “believe or burn.” [sic] Written in this way indicates an intimidation, a threat, coercion, or a shakedown….. chose one or all. This is opposite of the truth, God’s plan of
    salvation is not “scaring the “hell” out of people.””

    Written in this way,it is quite accurate. It’s not designed to scare the hell out of people, but to scare the hell INTO people. The only unforgiveable sin is not believing that Jesus died for your sins. According to several posters here, True Christians ™ each and every one, “believe or burn” is not only the central message of
    Christianity, but not believing is blasphemy against the holy spirit. And that is also THE unforgiveable sin.

    “Jesus earned for us the forgiveness of sins and that is a free gift with no strings attached. Unconditional.” But it has a string attached: if you don’t accept this “gift” you will burn for eternity. It is neither a
    gift that is generously offered, nor one that can easily be refused, unless of course, you either don’t buy the spiritual nonsense, or see it for what it is. I don’t know where you come from, but it sounds like the Divine Mafia in operation: “Nice little soul you have there. It would be a cryin’ shame if somethin’ ‘happened’ to it.”
    In other words, it’s a protection racket.

    You continue on in the same vein: “Why do some take this free gift and others don’t. I don’t know. What I do know is that the HOLY
    SPIRIT works faith in the hearts of mankind using the Gospel of Jesus Christ and sins forgiven.” Demonstrably NOT TRUE. It’s a rather impotent holy spirit. After 2000 years, 2/3 of the world rejects Christianity. The vast majority of Christians are Christian because their parents were. Half of those people really don’t probably and realistically believe in hell. I would also argue that half are Christians in name only. To argue that the “HOLY SPIRIT works faith in the hearts of mankind using the Gospel of Jesus Christ and sins forgiven.” is not a fact, but wishful thinking.

    Why would something that intelligent and that powerful rely on faith alone, especially since faith is so highly questioned among the faithful themselves? “You’re not a true Christian like I am” is a common refrain among the hyper religious who post on these pages. It’s just one more way to separate and denigrate other people, especially under the not-very-successful disguise of “loving” them.

    The holy spirit worked on you, and got through to you, but didn’t work on me, and I wanted to believe, and badly. A great many people in the world have not only not heard the message, they haven’t heard of the messenger, or they translate that messenger to their own terms. No Jesus at all, but Allah, Mohammed, Indra, Brahma, El, and a host of other gods and prophets and messengers. In other words, if this were so obviously true, why is it also obviously true that this holy spirit is so weak that it cannot get its message through to people? And why is it so vicious that after it failed to get you the memo, it will consign you to hell because of its own failures? You will say it relies on faith, but that is no answer, either, because it gives absolutely nothing to people who don’t already share that faith.

    You wrote “The existence of God and faith in His son, Jesus Christ, does not need proof.” If I told you I was sleeping with your wife, or that I could jump off a tall building and fly, you would demand proof. But your message from the creator of the entire universe requires no proof whatsoever, just your word. And in fact, your faith eschews proof as being worldly and not good enough.

    You wrote: “God, through the Holy Spirit, provides His own proof in the heart and soul of the individual where there is never a doubt of who put it there.” But not in 2/3 of the world. Not in half of those who
    claim to be Christian. Not in the souls of those who have left Christianity because it has no answers for them, or no longer has. Not in the souls of those who claim to be Christian, but act like total a-holes, in direct contravention to what Jesus had to say on the matter.

    Thanks for “sharing your faith.” I’m sure you meant well, but instead, you just provided yet one more reason not to buy any of what you are selling. The Holy spirit continues in its success.

  • Well, Spud, you were almost right. Not a nasty ad hominem attack, though. Just another attempt to proselytize. His interest in what I had ot say lasted all of 21 words. Take a look.

  • There was the great philosopher Telemachus in ancient Thebes around 1200 BCE who first wrote of the great Aardvarks. Prior to that it was oral history passed down throughout the ages. The empire of the Gauls was founded on belief in the invisible aardvarks. Much of it destroyed by the Romans around the time of Julius Caesar. This is all described in the various scriptures on aardvark belief. Google it!

    It is common knowledge. Your ignorance of such things is not credible. It is a moral failing. As a disbeliever, someone who is emphatically sure they do not exist, the burden is on you to disprove the existence of such things.

  • You are either thickheaded or dishonest enough to not hold your own belief to the same standard. A Christian hypocrite, how unsurprising.

  • Huh??? “Telemachus (/təˈlɛməkəs/ tə-lem-ə-kəs; Greek: Τηλέμαχος, Tēlemakhos, literally “far-fighter”) is a figure in Greek mythology, the son of Odysseus and Penelope, and a central character in Homer’s Odyssey.” https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telemachus
    This is a fictional character.
    Embarrassed much???

  • What many atheists do is make fantasy statements about atheism that are not true. That’s how you know its all fantasy.

  • True but the sects that make up more than 75% of the faith officially denounce Creationism. Including its largest sect.

  • Wrong one. You have to research more. The work is called, “Of Aardvarks and Man”. Your ignorance of such works is from your poor education. One no doubtedly the result of homeschooling.

    “As noted in the works of Telemachus the Pithy, most notably Of Aardvarks and Man, the invisible aardvark is intrinsic part of man’s existence. As chronicled through the ages, those who have denied it’s existence have suffered fates stemming from their ignorance” On the Truth of the Aardvark, Professor Amelia Pond-Williams, pg. 164 (Fordham University Press, 1938)

  • I gave you the citation. Are you calling me a liar now? After I got the book of the shelf and typed out the citation by hand? I don’t have to give you a link. There is more out there than you can found in a direct internet link. They are called books Are you so uneducated that you can’t believe anything unless it’s posted online?*
    .
    .
    .
    * true story, at least 3 people (including one regular poster at RNS) have given me nearly the same exact remark as I did when dealing with the same request.

  • That is because I am a fever dream following your psychotic break from reality. This conversation doesn’t really exist. It is merely an expression of your mind wandering while you are nearly catatonic and pumped full of Thorazine.

  • It always amuses me that when you tell the truth in one of these comment sections nobody believes you.
    All you have demonstrated is how closed minded you are not willing to consider anything outside your personal beliefs. How does one grow or mature intellectually with your attitude.
    Actually my original research was done over 30 years ago and they are still doing research, refining, and finding further uses for my basic discovery.

  • You really are ignorant. You haven’t posted one thing of substance. All you do is post snide remarks about things which are obviously beyond your comprehension. Otherwise you might have posted something cogent demonstrating your erudition.

  • You are a philistine! Never heard of books! The sum total of your knowledge is only from “the interwebs”. I don’t have to give you a link! You are that ignorant that you never heard of this! How do you expect to carry on a discussion without such a basis of knowledge. You can find this stuff out on your own. If you are going to impugn my integrity in such a fashion, then we have no reason to continue this discussion. I have never dealt with such rude behavior online in my life. I give you a citation which proves my point and you think it is just nonsense just because I do not provide a link for you!*
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    * Again, pretty close to actual responses I got when I made the exact same request to several online posters on different subjects.

  • The reason Christians need to reject Evolution is that it takes Genesis and kicks it out the window. Book I of the Bible takes a fatal hit.Christians object to little other science quite like they do evolution. Of course they can move the goal post and say ,”Who knows how long a day is for god?” But then we start editing and parsing words until the bible is bashed enough to fit under the evolution umbrella.

    Until that happens, we’ll have unthinking anti-sciecne christianists and people that seek their life through science and reason.

  • This discussion was over before it started because you had nothing to offer for your beliefs. You gave me no facts because there are no facts for atheism. Such is the way of the atheist.

  • “I think you are a confirmed lover of the material world.”

    Amen! I love the material world! It’s where fun is. It’s where food is. Pizza? it’s in there! Sex? Wow! it’s in the material world. Roller coasters, sunrises, ocean waves, a baby’s first giggle, it’s all in this material world!

    Even from your religion – Motzart please! (( https://youtu.be/zwMzoMW2U6s )) This is the material world you hate so much.

    Jump around? (( https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KZaz7OqyTHQ )) It’s in there!

    The material world is your God’s big big show! Touch it! Taste it! bring yourself the thrills and pleasures it was made for! Grab your lover and you will be moved to give glory to someone for the amazing things here!

    View the cosmos! (( https://i.ytimg.com/vi/RY4uivIh-ik/maxresdefault.jpg )) this should blow you away!

    Dawin went out into the world and touched it, smelled it, measured it, not just sitting around theorizing. he got his hands dirty and did back breaking labor! He brought his work to you and you piss on it in favor of locking away in a church, listening to fear stories about eternal torture, and believe something unfindable in this material world.

    This is a slam dunk man – you hate the material world? If it’s a choice between your religion and this world, you own the losing hand every single time.

    Do you even eat?

  • So you know how to ask the right questions and challenge spurious assertions but are too dishonest to apply them. You offer nothing for your beliefs as well. Nothing anyone has to accept.

    I made it abundantly clear I was not only acting and trolling, but using real responses I have received by purveyors of BS. Such as those people who make the ridiculous assumptions. One has to disprove the existence of God. Your lack of self awareness is duly noted.

    I have to prove atheism the same way you have to disprove invisible aardvarks. Same burdens of proof. Same kinds of claims. You know better, and understand what one asks when dealing with claims of the supernatural, but continue the nonsense. Because you a hypocrite.

    But we know Christian belief encourages hypocrisy, dishonesty and unhappiness. They are always living in fear that the slightest infraction of their arbitrary religious code will cause divine punishment and wrath. They have to pretend to be content because they fear showing otherwise. God will punish them for not being enthusiastic enough. They are happy to commit evil acts because their fear of God is more important than basic decency, moral behavior or penalties of law.

  • That is a lie. I have given plenty of evidence and reasons for my beliefs. Creation, the origin of the universe, life, morals and the life of Christ to name a few.

    You, on the other hand offer nothing but nonsense. I don’t blame you for not wanting to bear the burden of proof for your atheism because there is no proof or evidence for it.

  • Now you are just being ironic. I offered the same level of evidence that you do. The only difference being that I am honest enough not to claim some blanket declaration constitutes something to be taken seriously. Burdens of proof are for other people, not yourself. Yes, you are a dishonest hypocrite with no sense of self-awareness who doesn’t get they are being parodied. I got that already.

    Please don’t use morals as something to be proud of in your Christian belief. You have stumped for some of the most heinous nonsense out there. Whatever morals exist as part of Christian belief are nowhere to be found in your posts.

  • > the chance of organic life emerging from inorganic matter being a confirmed mathematical impossibility (in excess of one chance in 10 to the 50th power)

    And yet it happens to this day,

  • > I accept much of evolution but some of it is full huge gaps in logic and proof.

    You understand neither ‘logic’ nor ‘proof’.

  • One counter example could bring down evolution. Millions of opportunities for one have existed. None has ever been observed.

  • YOU WROTE: “… an alternative idea means it has equal merit to an accepted one.”

    ~~~~~~ Your definition of an “accepted” idea or theory is arrogant and
    imperious, that you deem to be compulsory for everyone.

    RE. “I doubt you will bring anything credible to the table when discussing “alternatives”
    ~~~~~ (( Of course you will take that attitude if it runs counter to your “theories” that cannot be proven any more than I can prove mine in a humanistic fashion.))

    RE. “You bear all the signs of a BS purveyor.”
    ~~~~~ (( Your intolerance and insults have no place in a discussion.))

  • We can understand God but not PERFECTLY…. that will take place in heaven.

    ROMANS 11:33
    Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God!
    How unsearchable his judgments,
    and his paths beyond tracing out!
    34 “Who has known the mind of the Lord?
    Or who has been his counselor?”
    35 “Who has ever given to God,
    that God should repay them?”
    36 For from him and through him and for him are all things

    On the last day of creation, God said, “Let us make man in OUR (notice the inference to the Father, Son, & Holy Spirit mentioned often in the Scriptures?) the image, in our likeness” (Genesis 1:26).

    Thus, the Triune God finished His work with a “personal touch.” God formed man from the dust and gave him life by sharing His own breath (Genesis 2:7). Accordingly, man is unique among all God’s creations, having both a material body and an immaterial soul/spirit.

    Having the “image” or “likeness” of God means, in the simplest terms, that we were made to resemble God. Adam did not resemble God in the sense of God’s having flesh and blood. Scripture says that “God is spirit” (John 4:24) and therefore exists without a body. However, Adam’s body did mirror the life of God insofar as it was created in perfect health and was not subject to death.

    The image of God refers to the immaterial part of man. It sets man apart from the animal world, fits him for the dominion God intended him to have over the earth (Genesis 1:28), and enables him to commune with his Maker. It is a likeness mentally, morally, and socially.

    Mentally, man was created as a rational, volitional agent. In other words, man can reason and man can choose. This is a reflection of God’s intellect and freedom. Anytime someone invents a machine, writes a book, paints a landscape, enjoys a symphony, calculates a sum, or names a pet, he or she is proclaiming the fact that we are made in God’s image.

    Morally, man was created in righteousness and perfect innocence, a reflection of God’s holiness. God saw all He had made (mankind included) and called it “very good” (Genesis 1:31). Our conscience or “moral compass” is a vestige of that original state. Whenever someone writes a law, recoils from evil, praises good behavior, or feels guilty, he is confirming the fact that we are made in God’s own image.

    Part of being made in God’s image is that Adam had the capacity to make free choices. Although he was given a righteous nature, Adam made an evil choice to rebel against his Creator. In so doing, Adam marred the image of God within himself, and he passed that damaged likeness on to all his descendants (Romans 5:12). Today, we still bear the image of God (James 3:9), but we also bear the scars of sin. Mentally, morally, socially, and physically, we show the effects of sin.

    The good news is that when God redeems an individual, He begins to restore the original image of God, creating a “new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness” (Ephesians 4:24). That redemption is only available by God’s grace through faith in Jesus Christ as our Savior from the sin that separates us from God (Ephesians 2:8-9).
    Through Christ, we are made new creations in the likeness of God (2 Corinthians 5:17).

  • N.B. – Verse 18

    1 JOHN 4:13
    This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world. 15 If anyone acknowledges that Jesus is the Son of God, God lives in them and they in God. 16 And so we know and rely on the love God has for us.

    God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them. 17 This is how love is made complete among us so that we will have confidence on the day of judgment: In this world we are like Jesus. 18 There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

    19 We love because he first loved us.

  • 1 JOHN 4:13
    This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit. 14 And we have seen and testify that the Father has sent his Son to be the Savior of the world.

  • Let’s take a closer look at the book of JOHN chapter 1 in its full context.

    1 In the beginning was the WORD, and the WORD was with God, and the WORD was God. 2 He was with God in the beginning. 3 Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. 4 In him was life, and that life was the light of all mankind. 5 The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it.

    Now let’s read further to see who the WORD is ……..

    9 The true light that gives light to everyone was coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and though the world was made through him, the world did not recognize him. 11 He came to that which was his own, but his own did not receive him. 12 Yet to all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God— 13 children born not of natural descent, nor of human decision or a husband’s will, but born of God.

    14 The WORD became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son (JESUS CHRIST), who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.

  • Your (computer – Bible) analogy is a logical fallacy.

    You are comparing spiritual matters with temporal, earthly matters.
    This is what “value theory” is all about. You are placing more value on the things of this short life to eternal, spiritual values. That is your choice.

  • If the origin of life and evolution cannot be replicated ( exactly reproduce an organism, genetic material, or a cell) in the labs of science to demonstrate origin of species and evolution, it is a theory, for that is the criterion of TRUE SCIENCE. The alternative to this is applying the S.W.A.G. System (Scientific Wild-Ass Guessing).

    The sad irony is that the big bangers and the evolutionist’s theories are being justified by junk science. Many false claims are couched in scientific jargon.

    For a humanist, the origin of life and evolution are scientific theories; it does not meet the requirements of pure science. Because modern science tries to rely on the minimization of material existing in the mind prior to and independent of experience or being non-analytic, of error, and subjectivity — as well as on avoidance of — it remains neutral on subjective subjects such as religion.

    The pseudo-science of the big bangers and evolutionists can backfire on them by not applying the criterion of Pure Science.
    Their kind of “science” is close-minded as it is predicated on a philosophical and theoretical framework of a scientific school or discipline within which theories, laws, and generalizations, are formulated…. including the experiments performed in support of them.
    All experiments, terminology, and so-called scientific “laws” are all structured in support of origin of life and evolution. This is NOT pure science.

    “Our most simulated simulations of life processes will always fall short of the real thing. We cannot create an artificial organism in even the lowest level, e.g.; a genome.*
    New worlds and endless discoveries await in nature except the solution to the mystery of mysteries – the origin and meaning of human life.” ~ E.O. Wilson

    *GENOME : Life is specified by genomes. Every organism, including humans, has a genome that contains all of the biological information needed to build and maintain a living example of that organism.

  • If the origin of life and evolution cannot be replicated (reproduce exactly an organism, genetic material, or a cell) in the labs of science to demonstrate “evolution”, it is a theory, for that is the criterion of TRUE SCIENCE. The alternative to this is applying the S.W.A.G. System (Scientific Wild Ass Guessing).

    The sad irony is that the big bangers and the evolutionist’s theories are being justified by junk science. Many false claims are couched in scientific jargon.

    For a humanist, the origin of life and evolution are scientific theories; it does not meet the requirements of pure science. Because modern science tries to rely on the minimization of material existing in the mind prior to and independent of experience or being non-analytic, of error, and subjectivity — as well as on avoidance of — it remains neutral on subjective subjects such as religion.

    The pseudo-science of the big bangers and evolutionists can backfire on them by not applying the criterion of Pure Science.
    Their kind of “science” is close-minded as it is predicated on a philosophical and theoretical framework of a scientific school or discipline within which theories, laws, and generalizations, are formulated…. including the experiments performed in support of them.
    All experiments, terminology, and so-called scientific “laws” are all structured in support of origin of life and evolution. This is NOT pure science.

    “Our most simulated simulations of life processes will always fall short of the real thing. We cannot create an artificial organism in even the lowest level, e.g.; a genome.*
    New worlds and endless discoveries await in nature except the solution to the mystery of mysteries – the origin and meaning of human life.” ~ E.O. Wilson

    *GENOME : Life is specified by genomes. Every organism, including humans, has a genome that contains all of the biological information needed to build and maintain a living example of that organism.

  • 1) A dog has no knowledge of that which you refer to, but manifests great love to man.
    2) Replace God with Allah, and Jesus with Mohammad in the above and it works.
    3) The genuine Stauffenberg sought to bring freedom to Mankind. You offer blinders.
    4) Tragic that you have only read one (1) book – a fairy tale at that.
    5) –
    When I became convinced that the Universe is natural–that all the ghosts
    and gods are myths, there entered into my brain, into my soul, into
    every drop of my blood, the sense, the feeling, the joy of freedom.

    The walls of my prison crumbled and fell, the dungeon was flooded with
    light, and all the bolts, and bars, and manacles became dust. I was no
    longer a servant, a serf, or a slave. There was for me no master in all
    the wide world–not even in infinite space.

    I was free–free to think, to express my thoughts–free to live to my own
    ideal–free to live for myself and those I loved–free to use all my
    faculties, all my senses–free to spread imagination’s wings–free to
    investigate, to guess and dream and hope–free to judge and determine for
    myself–free to reject all ignorant and cruel creeds, all the “inspired”
    books that savages have produced, and all the barbarous legends of the
    past–free from popes and priests–free from all the “called” and “set
    apart”–free from sanctified mistakes and holy lies–free from the fear of
    eternal pain–free from the winged monsters of the night–free from
    devils, ghosts, and gods.

    For the first time I was free. There were no prohibited places in all
    the realms of thought–no air, no space, where fancy could not spread her
    painted wings–no chains for my limbs–no lashes for my back–no fires for
    my flesh–no master’s frown or threat–no following another’s steps- -no
    need to bow, or cringe, or crawl, or utter lying words. I was free. I
    stood erect and fearlessly, joyously, faced all worlds.

    And then my heart was filled with gratitude, with thankfulness, and went
    out in love to all the heroes, the thinkers who gave their lives for
    the liberty of hand and brain–for the freedom of labor and thought–to
    those who fell in the fierce fields of war, to those who died in
    dungeons bound with chains–to those who proudly mounted scaffold’s
    stairs–to those whose bones were crushed, whose flesh was scarred and
    torn–to those by fire consumed–to all the wise, the good, the brave of
    every land, whose thoughts and deeds have given freedom to the sons of
    men. And then I vowed to grasp the torch that they had held, and hold it
    high, that light might conquer darkness still.

    ~Robert G. Ingersoll (1833-1899)

  • “From time immemorial, many of the best and ablest philosophers, who have been perfect lights of science in matters of theory, have been wholly unable to reduce them to practice.” ~ Charles Dickens

  • YOU WROTE: “It doesn’t matter what you think.”

    If that is what you believe about the opinions of others, why should we bother to read your comments?

  • RE. … “Lucy has never been found.”

    ~~~~~ Lucille Ball ?? She is in Lake View Cemetery, Jamestown, New York

  • Wow!
    Virtually all your quotes are from a book of fairy tales written over an 1800 yr period.
    Now you’re quoting a 19th century novelist.
    You’re not only 150 yrs outdated – but don’t know an author of fiction from a scientist.

  • Now I recognize your writing !

    You’re a staff writer for the Comedy Channel ! ! !

    Here’s another of your scientific riffs I saw Prof Irwin Corey perform on the Merv Griffin show back in the 60’s.

    “However … we all know that protocol takes precedence over procedures.
    This Paul Lindsey point of order based on the state of inertia of
    developing a centrifugal force issued as a catalyst rather than as a
    catalytic agent, and hastens a change reaction and remains an indigenous
    brier to its inception. This is a focal point used as a tangent so the
    bile is excreted through the panaceas.”

    You haven’t lost your touch !

  • You may have recognized the words but you rejected the message.

    ◄ 1 Corinthians 12:3 ►
    Therefore I want you to know that no one who is speaking by the Spirit of God says, “Jesus be cursed,” and no one can say, “Jesus is Lord,” except by the Holy Spirit.

    2 Corinthians 4:3
    And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. 4 The god of this age (Satan) has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 5 For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. 6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made His light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.

    John 10:24
    The Jews who were there gathered around him, saying, “How long will you keep us in suspense? If you are the Messiah, tell us plainly.”25 JESUS answered, “I did tell you, but you do not believe. The works I do in my Father’s name testify about me, 26 but you do not believe because you are not my sheep. 27 My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand. 29 My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all ; no one can snatch them out of my Father’s hand. 30 I and the Father are one.”

  • Please reply with documentation re. “the Catholic Church had officially disavowed creationism.”

  • Even TRUE science (not junk science) does not venture into the theory of “evolution” or “origin of species” because it cannot be replicated.

  • There certainly are those who do not represent the Scriptures.

    1 John 4:4
    Dear friends, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world.

    ◄ Acts 17:11 ►
    Now the Berean Jews were of more noble character than those in Thessalonica, for they received the message with great eagerness and examined the Scriptures every day to see if what Paul said was true.

  • I hope the following will give you a curory understanding of how to read the Scriptures but it does require an open, unbiased mind.

    HERMENEUTICS : principles and methods of Bible interpretation.

    Historically, the most common approaches to Bible interpretation have been the :

    ALLEGORICAL [which errantly sees symbolic language just about everywhere in the Bible text]; A story that has a deeper or more general meaning in addition to its surface meaning. Allegories are composed of several symbols or metaphors.

    LITERALISTIC [which prefers to take the words of the text as they are given and fails to appreciate picture language symbolic use of words to the degree that literal interpreters do]; and

    ­ LITERAL [ the safest method which takes the words of the text in their ordinary sense but allows for the use of symbolic and poetic language IF other parts of the Bible endorse it].

    Proper EXEGESIS [exposition, explanation; especially : an explanation or critical interpretation of a text] includes using the context around the passage of Scripture, comparing it with other parts of the Bible, and applying an understanding of the language at the time of the writing, in an attempt to understand clearly what the original writer, inspired by God the Holy Spirit, was conveying. In other words, it is trying to “pull out” of the passage the meaning inherent in it.
    The opposite of exegesis is called EISEGESIS, uses an approach to interpreting a Bible passage by reading into it a meaning that is not evident at all by the passage or by how one “feels” what it means to make it fit into a preconceived notion to satisfy the “itching ears” of Scriptural antagonists.

  • Don’t be so blase’.
    C’mon Sandi – is that the best you can do when you’re “knowledge” source proves lacking ?

  • I opine that “reconcile scientific reality” is the operative phrase here.

    If science does not clash with what God has revealed to mankind in the Scriptures, the gift of scientific studies are a blessing. If not, it becomes contention.

  • Are these your favorite hymns ?

    “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” ~ Cyndi Lauper

    “Material Girl” ~ Madonna

  • Since you base your future on philosophies that leave no room for the spiritual life, you must then consider PASCAL’S WAGER …….

    He posits that humans all bet with their lives either that God/Jesus Christ exist or that He does not.
    Pascal argues that a rational person should live as though God/Jesus Christ exists and seek God/Jesus Christ.

    In other words, if I believe and trust in God/Jesus Christ and find out there is no God, I have nothing to lose. Whereas when an unbeliever dies and finds out there is a God/Jesus Christ, he will have everything to lose …an eternity in Hell.

    What kind of a gambler are you?

  • Hmm. We are given a choice between
    A. Myths recorded 2000 to 3000 years ago by primitive shepherds who had no clue where the sun went at night, myths that were recorded by relatively few people, and are never corrected for inconsistencies or errors. Blind belief in these myths was often enforced under threat of torture and death. OR
    B. The repeatable and testable observations of hundreds of thousands of scientists around the world, with conclusions that are constantly refined and corrected.

    Wow. Which is more likely to be correct? That’s a toughy.

  • You have got to be kidding. Pascal’s wager is a logical fallacy. The name is given to a category of arguments commonly used by religionists who don’t think things through. It was thoroughly debunked the moment it was proposed by Pascal.

    So your perfect, all knowing god can be tricked by a cynical non believer pretending belief just in case? You don’t think much of your god.

  • What a load of wankery. Cute little asides are inserted into definitions which point to your preference towards the most apologetic and least honest forms of interpretation. Anything other than a literary reading presumes belief already and merely spins one’s wheels as to how they want to use scripture for a given purpose. Your skewed definitions as to how the Bible is to be read is duly noted and will be promptly ignored hereafter.

  • In your opinion. Since you are not the sole deciding factor in such matters, it means little whether you think several hundred million Christians are not doing it right. In all such statements like yours, the only true Christians are the ones which agree with you.

  • Wrong. Your definition of true or false science is your own and means nothing here. Replication exists in that its application can be applied in the study of every species we know of so far. Findings showing evolutionary development for one species easily applies to others.

    Denying evolutionary theory in favor of religious mythology is both dishonest and delusional. There is no sane rational literal reading of Genesis 1 possible. The reasons one tries have everything to do with personal feelings and faith and nothing to do with honest representation of fact.