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Old 06-27-2019, 07:19 PM
 
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The true gospel occurs when you realize that you are a sinner ruled by your own desires, and that you want to repent and serve God. The Bible will all make sense when this occurs. But don't be discouraged even if it does not. Just understand that the books in it were written by people who had each had this same revelation. So each book tells the same basic story of spiritual conversion.
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Old 06-27-2019, 08:08 PM
Status: "We The North" (set 24 days ago)
 
Location: Ontario, Canada
25,749 posts, read 13,395,224 times
Reputation: 11665
Follow the golden rule to the best of your ability.

Whilst smiting fundies.

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Old 06-27-2019, 11:48 PM
 
4,410 posts, read 1,637,523 times
Reputation: 1528
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMBGBlueCanary View Post
I am struggling with religious belief and hoped some of you may have some advice. Maybe you've been though something similar. What did you do?

I have been for a while actually. I am Catholic. I go to Mass on Sundays and go to Mass on Holy Days of Obligation. I go, but I find everything to be repetitive and robotic. I can literally go on autopilot and recite a whole Mass and not even think about what I am saying. I really only get something out of the readings (which are different every week, but basically are the same readings I've seen all my life. So many are left out) and the homily (sermon). I should note, I've always been a "cafeteria Catholic" or a "lukewarm Catholic" and haven't always accepted the Church's teaching on some things.My Catholic family members are pretty much the same.

The past few years I've been working on learning more about my faith and I've done a lot of digging into Catholicism and am surprised by how much I never knew. I've attended classes offered by the Church, read historical books, and watched videos and documentaries presented from everyone from priests to atheists. And I've been reading the Bible.

Paradoxically, the more I learn, the less religious faith I have. For example, reading in detail how the gospels came to be, how they were edited, what was left out and why shakes my faith in what is there. Finding out how much the faith itself changed and listening to priests explain why it was changed for the "better" makes me question "if this is all divinely inspired, why does God change things? Wouldn't it have been perfect form the start? Either God isn't perfect or this isn't really divine."

I also learned about other ancient faiths that have similar themes to Christianity (death and resurrection gods with very similar stories). I read about other branches of Christianity that used to exist but were wiped out as heretics. Recently I found out that one of the names for God used in the Old Testament may be same name as a god in a pantheon of gods and some of those other gods are actually mentioned in the Old Testament (although some of that is debated by biblical scholars, but the idea blew my mind). And most frustrating, the Bible. It, like religion is supposed to be divinely inspired, but it contradicts itself in places or gives two stories for the same event (but the stories are not the same). So which one is true? And does that mean at least part of the Bible is incorrect? Of course, Catholics aren't sola scriptura anyway and aren't expected to literally believe Old Testament stories, at least now. Why did that change?

All this on top of the abuse scandals that go back years. And every time it seems like the Church is going to fix things, another one pops up. Part of the reason this is all reaching a head for me is that we recently had one of the priests in our parish removed because of "something" (but there is no indication of why... but they stressed no kids were involved... but it's all hush hush and just plain weird). I don't know if I believe the Church has lied and covered up before.

So I've looked into other Christian branches. Namely Lutheran and Episcopal. They seem okay, but there is still the issues that I mentioned earlier and when I research them I find things there that I don't believe either. I've decided I will go to an Episcopal service one Sunday and a Lutheran another. But Catholicism is seared into my brain it's almost like, if I don't believe that, how can I believe anything else? I find myself wondering if, at heart, I am just agnostic (like my father) and have just been going through the motions out of habit or if I haven't quite found the right religion. I believe in the basic concepts of Christian faith (love, charity, etc). But those really aren't exclusive to Christianity.

So anyone else go a similar crisis of faith? What did you do? Any advice?
1 - God did not change the Bible. People did.
2 - And whoever did it, will face the consequences of their actions.

No. 1 is a fact.
No .2 is a faith based belief.

Now, since we have come an understanding and agreement, that YES INDEED, the Bible has been miscegenated, the question then is, where do we go from here to find the truth?

If I put it in a gross example, would a person drink a glass of water if I put a drop of urine in it?
The answer is, probably not.

Same is the case of Bible - even though it may have bits and pieces of truth but it has been altered.
(Dr. Bart Ehrman has done a lot of very compelling work on it. YT has some good videos.)

The most important question now is, if we dismiss the Bible then, does God still exist?

If no - then you perhaps automatically become an Atheist. This is your choice and you are free to take this path. You are free to believe that the entire universe and everything in it, came together all by itself. There is no designer, no creator and no force behind all this. And there is an absolute void after our deaths.

If yes, then you have two main options.

A - Live like many modern day Christians do.
And that is, don’t worry too much about what’s in the Bible - no need to read or study it on mandatory daily/weekly/monthly, basis.
Simply believe in Trinity (a word that does appear anywhere in the Bible, not even once) and believe that Jesus died for yours sins - and hence a red carpet cosmic welcome is awaiting for you with a guaranteed spot in paradise (no sex though).
You can optionally visit the church every once a year on Christmas. All good and dandy.

2 - If deep inside your heart, you feel any doubts in ‘item A’ but your heart still says that there IS a God out there, then you come to realize that God does not live in a church or in the Bible.

And this will open up a choice to take a journey which will require some bravery, some courage and some wisdom.

You start searching God by his signs.

And to do that, you will start with studying other religions and their holy text.

However, you will make and follow a fundamental rule here.

All religions under your study will be judged by their holy book.
(And if you notice, you have already followed this rule with Christianity and The Bible)

You will then start by picking any religion of your choice and start studying its holy book.
If you have questions or need clarification on anything from the book, you should consult a scholar of that faith only.
(It’s just like, if you get sick, you consult a doctor to get advice and not your postman).
So a question from Gita should be asked from a Hindu scholar, and a question from Torah/Talmud should be asked from a Rabbi, and so forth.

And this is they key part,
During the study of any and every religious/holy book, you periodically ask yourself;
”Is this the Truth?”
And you let your heart answer it.

Remember, the brain does the research part, but the call to faith, comes from the heart.

I hope this helps and you will find something that talks to your heart.

All the best, if you decide to take this journey.

Last edited by GoCardinals; 06-27-2019 at 11:57 PM..
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Old 06-28-2019, 04:37 AM
 
3,062 posts, read 1,561,536 times
Reputation: 3202
Former Catholic here who went through that change as well, but you did more research in related areas. My research was figuring out why I was very insecure. People say, "trust in God" but I had to stop trusting in God, which resulted in me digging a hole that I was knew I was in but didn't realize I was digging it. So I decided Christianity was the problem at first, but it was actually my culture. I still will not return to Christianity. The biggest concern left was getting into heaven, but I decided to take my chances.
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Old 06-28-2019, 05:17 AM
 
Location: Valencia, Spain
15,310 posts, read 10,332,182 times
Reputation: 2610
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoCardinals View Post
1 - God did not change the Bible. People did.
...and the omnimax creator of the universe was powerless to stop them changing it's 'unchanging' words?
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Old 06-28-2019, 06:10 AM
 
13,450 posts, read 4,976,974 times
Reputation: 1363
Quote:
Originally Posted by TMBGBlueCanary View Post
I am struggling with religious belief and hoped some of you may have some advice. Maybe you've been though something similar. What did you do?

I have been for a while actually. I am Catholic. I go to Mass on Sundays and go to Mass on Holy Days of Obligation. I go, but I find everything to be repetitive and robotic. I can literally go on autopilot and recite a whole Mass and not even think about what I am saying. I really only get something out of the readings (which are different every week, but basically are the same readings I've seen all my life. So many are left out) and the homily (sermon). I should note, I've always been a "cafeteria Catholic" or a "lukewarm Catholic" and haven't always accepted the Church's teaching on some things.My Catholic family members are pretty much the same.

The past few years I've been working on learning more about my faith and I've done a lot of digging into Catholicism and am surprised by how much I never knew. I've attended classes offered by the Church, read historical books, and watched videos and documentaries presented from everyone from priests to atheists. And I've been reading the Bible.

Paradoxically, the more I learn, the less religious faith I have. For example, reading in detail how the gospels came to be, how they were edited, what was left out and why shakes my faith in what is there. Finding out how much the faith itself changed and listening to priests explain why it was changed for the "better" makes me question "if this is all divinely inspired, why does God change things? Wouldn't it have been perfect form the start? Either God isn't perfect or this isn't really divine."

I also learned about other ancient faiths that have similar themes to Christianity (death and resurrection gods with very similar stories). I read about other branches of Christianity that used to exist but were wiped out as heretics. Recently I found out that one of the names for God used in the Old Testament may be same name as a god in a pantheon of gods and some of those other gods are actually mentioned in the Old Testament (although some of that is debated by biblical scholars, but the idea blew my mind). And most frustrating, the Bible. It, like religion is supposed to be divinely inspired, but it contradicts itself in places or gives two stories for the same event (but the stories are not the same). So which one is true? And does that mean at least part of the Bible is incorrect? Of course, Catholics aren't sola scriptura anyway and aren't expected to literally believe Old Testament stories, at least now. Why did that change?

All this on top of the abuse scandals that go back years. And every time it seems like the Church is going to fix things, another one pops up. Part of the reason this is all reaching a head for me is that we recently had one of the priests in our parish removed because of "something" (but there is no indication of why... but they stressed no kids were involved... but it's all hush hush and just plain weird). I don't know if I believe the Church has lied and covered up before.

So I've looked into other Christian branches. Namely Lutheran and Episcopal. They seem okay, but there is still the issues that I mentioned earlier and when I research them I find things there that I don't believe either. I've decided I will go to an Episcopal service one Sunday and a Lutheran another. But Catholicism is seared into my brain it's almost like, if I don't believe that, how can I believe anything else? I find myself wondering if, at heart, I am just agnostic (like my father) and have just been going through the motions out of habit or if I haven't quite found the right religion. I believe in the basic concepts of Christian faith (love, charity, etc). But those really aren't exclusive to Christianity.

So anyone else go a similar crisis of faith? What did you do? Any advice?
I can only speak to atheism because thats what I know. keep in mind during your search, that people define what we see around around us.

Just as you see some people in your religion twist what you believe; we have in our atheist ranks atheist that twist what atheism is. Just like you have them in your religion.

anti-religious/god sects of atheism are not the same as just regular atheism. Just as some sects in Christianity are not the same as just regular Christians.

Just keep that mind during your search. We don't have to follow anti-god atheism any more than we do dude and rise-ed for our sins.

They are equally ...
locked in a box.
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Old 06-28-2019, 06:17 AM
 
3,062 posts, read 1,561,536 times
Reputation: 3202
Quote:
Originally Posted by OzzyRules View Post
The true gospel occurs when you realize that you are a sinner ruled by your own desires, and that you want to repent and serve God. The Bible will all make sense when this occurs. But don't be discouraged even if it does not. Just understand that the books in it were written by people who had each had this same revelation. So each book tells the same basic story of spiritual conversion.
The word "sin" is an attempt to work on people unsure about their faith because it is tied to both a feeling and a behavior. Christians will connect it to behavior in order to create a specific social structure and culture. They determine right and wrong behavior. They also attempt to tie specific behavior to a personality instead of connecting it to a feeling that should be temporary if negative or that should last a while if positive.

If people don't feel bad about their situation or their behavior, they will have no need to repent, which is one example of an adaptive behavior to a negative feeling. This creates a problem for the Christian who needs the sinner to feel bad about their behavior, you know, for their soul's sake.

When sin is tied to temporary negative feelings, which I hope everyone desires for themselves and for those they care about, a very different social structure is created. This is because there are no right or wrong feelings since they are not observable. It evens the playing field for everyone in the relationship. It is how we express our feelings, the observable behavior, that hurts our relationships. In this social structure, both people in a relationship serve each other, making sure negative feelings are temporary and positive feelings are the goal.

This structure doesn't work in the Christian religion where you are a servant of God. Your feelings don't matter, just your behavior.

Last edited by elyn02; 06-28-2019 at 06:28 AM..
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Old 06-28-2019, 06:18 AM
 
472 posts, read 93,546 times
Reputation: 332
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoCardinals View Post
1 - God did not change the Bible. People did......

Now, since we have come an understanding and agreement, that YES INDEED, the Bible has been miscegenated, the question then is, where do we go from here to find the truth?.....

Same is the case of Bible - even though it may have bits and pieces of truth but it has been altered.
I'm confused... the Bible was "changed, miscegenated, altered" from WHAT?
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Old 06-28-2019, 06:50 AM
 
Location: Southern Oregon
16,256 posts, read 7,644,495 times
Reputation: 1718
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rafius View Post
...and the omnimax creator of the universe was powerless to stop them changing it's 'unchanging' words?
How about, "never intended it to be our guide or foundation for relationship?"
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Old 06-28-2019, 07:12 AM
 
4,410 posts, read 1,637,523 times
Reputation: 1528
Quote:
Originally Posted by HeelaMonster View Post
I'm confused... the Bible was "changed, miscegenated, altered" from WHAT?
“Dr. Bart Ehrman”, search Yourube.
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