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Old 08-12-2014, 10:28 AM
 
Location: Salt Lake City
21,337 posts, read 21,037,998 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ovcatto View Post
Does anyone other than myself wonder why these creators of universes reveal themselves only on a relatively small regional basis? After all, god's who created a universe as vastly large as the one in which we live confined their revelations to man to only small portions of mankind. Yaweh and Allah revealed themselves only to small nomadic people of the middle east, while another set of gods revealed themselves only to their respective "chosen people."
I don't wonder about that because I don't believe it to be the case.

From the Book of Mormon:

"Know ye not that there are more nations than one? Know ye not that I, the Lord your God, have created all men, and that I remember those who are upon the isles of the sea; and that I rule in the heavens above and in the earth beneath; and I bring forth my word unto the children of men, yea, even upon all the nations of the earth?

Wherefore murmur ye, because that ye shall receive more of my word? Know ye not that the testimony of two nations is a witness unto you that I am God, that I remember one nation like unto another?Wherefore, I speak the same words unto one nation like unto another. And when the two nations shall run together the testimony of the two nations shall run together also.

And I do this that I may prove unto many that I am the same yesterday, today, and forever; and that I speak forth my words according to mine own pleasure. And because that I have spoken one word ye need not suppose that I cannot speak another; for my work is not yet finished; neither shall it be until the end of man, neither from that time henceforth and forever.

Wherefore, because that ye have a Bible ye need not suppose that it contains all my words; neither need ye suppose that I have not caused more to be written.

For I command all men, both in the east and in the west, and in the north, and in the south, and in the islands of the sea, that they shall write the words which I speak unto them; for out of the books which shall be written I will judge the world, every man according to their works, according to that which is written."
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Old 08-12-2014, 10:38 AM
 
Location: Type 0.7 Kardashev
10,577 posts, read 6,899,152 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shirina View Post
Why would an all-powerful God fail so abysmally in getting his message past the culture and into the hearts and minds of the people?
a) Despite onmipotence, he's just really crappy at the whole communicating thing?

or

b) Despite boundless love for humanity, he gets his jollies playing mind games and messing with people? (maybe pulling the wings off flies got boring)

or

c) This is a lousy excuse to explain away yet another inconsistency in an already incoherent and utterly illogical religion?

Huh. I wonder which it could possibly be... ?
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Old 08-12-2014, 05:32 PM
 
37,735 posts, read 25,416,706 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shirina View Post
Why would an all-powerful God fail so abysmally in getting his message past the culture and into the hearts and minds of the people?
As I said elsewhere many times: With an omnipotent God, nothing (and I really do mean nothing) happens anywhere in the universe unless God wants it to.
Which means either God is deliberately being coy and misleading thus sabotaging his own efforts at getting everyone on earth to worship him - or - God is not omnipotent and therefore capable of dumb mistakes in which case he isn't worthy of blind obedience - or - there simply aren't gods of any kind.
The Omni's are creations of human vanity and hubris. Demanding that our God MUST be whatever we decide is necessary to qualify as God is just arrogant. God is no more and no less than whatever we can discern. Everything else is pure speculation. What we know from science of the God that is responsible for our reality is not insignificant . . . but far less than we would like to know. Our mere beliefs and speculations about God do not in any way determine what God IS. They remain beliefs only. We each have our own threshold for accepting beliefs about God that cannot currently be validated. Calling our God Nature or Zeus or Allah or YHWH or Christ or even just ABBA . . . is irrelevant to the existence of God. Our names and beliefs do NOT determine anything about God other than what we BELIEVE.
Quote:
As for the OP's 4 year-old post, I have pointed out the strangeness of Yahweh's geographical isolation many times in my past writings. It seems to me to be unmitigated stupidity for an omnipotent God to restrict himself to some desert backwater and then trust that a dozen or so apostles will carry his word to every corner of the globe. Of course, this was in an era when travel was long, arduous, dangerous, and the language barriers rather insurmountable for most people. As I said before, up until recently, most people died within 10 miles of where they were born. In other words, no one traveled except for merchants and soldiers.
Thus to expect a Middle Easterner who might speak Aramaic to travel thousands of miles to China and spread the Gospel to Chinese-speaking locals who already have their own religions and culture. More than likely, the Chinese would look at the Christian prophet with disdain and make fun of him with his Chinese buddies - without the Israelite being any the wiser.
It's just ridiculous. Yeah, I know - someone is going to say something like, "But look around! Christianity is now known even in the rural countryside of technologically backward nations!"
Uh huh, but it only took nearly 2,000 years to get to that point. So it's still ridiculous.
But isn't it just the least bit strange that such a minor remote backwater religion based on an insignificant Jewish carpenter without significant press or publications among the literati of the day . . . was able to achieve such tenacity and reach over so many millennia???? Remember . . . prior to being promoted by Rome it was seriously persecuted for centuries . . . usually to the death of its adherents. We usually see 100 years as minor when viewing backwards over millenia. But look forward from today to just 100 years from now . . . how does that seem as a time frame to endure such horrendous and deadly persecution. Now triple it and more! Just saying.
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Old 08-12-2014, 06:31 PM
 
8,366 posts, read 2,793,448 times
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Religion is a product of the environment just as is atheism. The very environment affecting us has a Spirit, Soul, and a Body. Your very perception is you view to interpret. And the One who has authority over all is the living God. Father, Son, Holy Ghost. If you humble yourself and acknowledge this, and your perception will grow.
God is alive. Not a cut copy and paste autonomous word around the world.

If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in there affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

For we war not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
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Old 08-12-2014, 06:56 PM
 
Location: In a little house on the prairie - literally
10,202 posts, read 5,784,699 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinacled View Post
Religion is a product of the environment just as is atheism. The very environment affecting us has a Spirit, Soul, and a Body. Your very perception is you view to interpret. And the One who has authority over all is the living God. Father, Son, Holy Ghost. If you humble yourself and acknowledge this, and your perception will grow.
God is alive. Not a cut copy and paste autonomous word around the world.

If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his tongue, but deceiveth his own heart, this man's religion is vain. Pure religion and undefiled before God and the Father is this, To visit the fatherless and widows in there affliction, and to keep himself unspotted from the world.

For we war not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.
So why do apologist get into quoting chapter and verse to proving their god?

Perhaps because they have nothing else to substantiate their belief.
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Old 08-12-2014, 09:47 PM
 
8,366 posts, read 2,793,448 times
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An apologist lives on faith alone. I Personally speak from experience. I was once agnostic. Even claimed atheism when I became bitter of the circumstances in my life. But deep down I felt there had to be more. Once I began to seek God, my circumstance's worsened exponentially. Over a matter of years my environment attacked me as if jealous. Peers , family, friends,
It was warfare. But without spiritual armor logic failed me. If I went to a H.r. for a work related problem they hung up on me. The same for all fields I walked through.
I am stubborn so I kept on for awhile with my own rational moral code. My very mind was a prison. When I woke up I realized the supernatural FORCES were attacking me.
So I called out loud God I need your help, this is insanity. And just like that things changed and I saw it. But I was young and complacent and more importantly young. Over time I developed a relationship with God by watching the very environment around me.
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Old 08-12-2014, 11:27 PM
 
Location: In a little house on the prairie - literally
10,202 posts, read 5,784,699 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinacled View Post
An apologist lives on faith alone.
Exactly, faith is not reason, nor is it fact. It is just faith.

Quote:
I Personally speak from experience. I was once agnostic. Even claimed atheism when I became bitter of the circumstances in my life. But deep down I felt there had to be more. Once I began to seek God, my circumstance's worsened exponentially. Over a matter of years my environment attacked me as if jealous. Peers , family, friends,
It was warfare. But without spiritual armor logic failed me. If I went to a H.r. for a work related problem they hung up on me. The same for all fields I walked through.
I am stubborn so I kept on for awhile with my own rational moral code. My very mind was a prison. When I woke up I realized the supernatural FORCES were attacking me.
So I called out loud God I need your help, this is insanity. And just like that things changed and I saw it. But I was young and complacent and more importantly young. Over time I developed a relationship with God by watching the very environment around me.
Well, I'm glad when you had your conversation with your god inside your own head, that it worked out for you an it helped. I say that without being factious.

However, you can not, nor can anyone else, replicate your feelings, thoughts, etc. Especially incongruous is that one would think that stories cobbled together by some bronzed aged, wandering and superstitious desert goat herders 2-3000 years ago had any credibility, especially since most of those stories were plagiarized from surrounding area, and those plagiarized stories were even older.

If your faith works for you, great.
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Old 08-13-2014, 04:03 AM
 
17,853 posts, read 11,832,857 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
Remember . . . prior to being promoted by Rome it was seriously persecuted for centuries . . . usually to the death of its adherents.
Are you sure about that?

The Myth of Persecution: How Early Christians Invented a Story of Martyrdom: Candida Moss: 9780062104526: Amazon.com: Books

Candida Moss, Professor of New Testament and early Christianity at the University of Notre Dame
Intriguingly, when we look at the ancient evidence for the treatment of early Christians a very different picture emerges. The vast majority of our ancient sources for persecution in the first century were written in the second century and beyond. The stories about the deaths of the apostles, for instance, were written as late as a hundred years later and modeled on the fanciful genre of ancient romance novels.

Even the earliest, most ostensibly trustworthy martyrdom stories have been edited and reworked. The authors of these accounts borrowed from ancient mythology, changed the details of events to make the martyrs appear more like Jesus, and made the Roman antagonists increasingly venomous. The motivations of these later authors and editors, who have gone unheralded by history but who shaped our understanding of the world, are arguably more fascinating than the martyrdom stories themselves. No doubt there are kernels of truth at the heart of some of some of the stories, but we do not have evidence of persecution.

The Roman evidence is also ambiguous. If Nero did target Christians after the great fire of Rome in 64 C.E. -- and there are good reasons for thinking he did not -- his treatment of them stemmed less from a desire to harm Christians than it did from his need to deflect blame from himself. Ancient Romans who spread the story about Nero saw his actions as contemptible and unjust.

Archeological evidence reveals that on those occasions when Christians did die en masse it was the result of general legislation intended to defend and fortify the empire. Christians were not named directly in imperial legislation until the second half of the third century, and it was only from 303-305 C.E., in the reign of the Emperor Diocletian, that we see anything resembling the brutal persecution of popular imagination. Christians did die. And Christians were occasionally persecuted, but should two years of persecution under Diocletian lead to nearly 2,000 years of Christian persecution complex?

The idea that Christianity is persecuted and needs to defend itself from external and internal attack comes from the victorious Church of the fourth and fifth centuries and beyond. It is a story that has brought comfort to the suffering, sick and oppressed, but it is a story that was used -- expanded, exaggerated and even invented -- to exclude heretics, that legitimized great violence and that continues to disrupt civil discourse. And it precisely this -- the effect that this inflated myth of persecution has had on modern politics and discourse -- that makes it imperative that we get our facts straight.
Candida Moss: The Myth of Christian Persecution
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Old 08-13-2014, 10:17 AM
 
Location: The backwoods of Pennsylvania ... unfortunately.
5,616 posts, read 3,161,589 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
The Omni's are creations of human vanity and hubris. Demanding that our God MUST be whatever we decide is necessary to qualify as God is just arrogant. God is no more and no less than whatever we can discern. Everything else is pure speculation. What we know from science of the God that is responsible for our reality is not insignificant . . . but far less than we would like to know. Our mere beliefs and speculations about God do not in any way determine what God IS. They remain beliefs only. We each have our own threshold for accepting beliefs about God that cannot currently be validated. Calling our God Nature or Zeus or Allah or YHWH or Christ or even just ABBA . . . is irrelevant to the existence of God. Our names and beliefs do NOT determine anything about God other than what we BELIEVE.
Yes, but you're only arguing for the existence of God - whatever that God might be. However, when it comes to worship and blind obedience, two things required of the Christian believer, things change. If I'm expected to "let go and let God" or "give my life over to God" or "Trust in Him" then I want to be damn certain that this "God" not only exists, but that he's competent.

I would suspect that's a pretty common sentiment which is why post-Roman religions cooked up gods smothered in Omni-sauce. As for me, I don't have a personality that lends itself to being starstruck and that means I'm not easy to impress. To get bona-fide worship outta me would require most of those omnis to be present.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MysticPhD View Post
But isn't it just the least bit strange that such a minor remote backwater religion based on an insignificant Jewish carpenter without significant press or publications among the literati of the day . . . was able to achieve such tenacity and reach over so many millennia???? Remember . . . prior to being promoted by Rome it was seriously persecuted for centuries . . . usually to the death of its adherents. We usually see 100 years as minor when viewing backwards over millenia. But look forward from today to just 100 years from now . . . how does that seem as a time frame to endure such horrendous and deadly persecution. Now triple it and more! Just saying.
Is it strange? No, not really. At least, not unless you consider it strange when someone who is hungry buys some food. Any religion that offers a paradise after death and all you have to do is believe it will likely become very popular. Christianity just happened to hit upon a product that people were willing to buy - and the price was right.

But it took just shy of 2,000 years for that product to find its way around the globe. It would be the equivalent of having the British just now discover how to work with bronze.
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Old 08-13-2014, 10:20 AM
 
Location: The backwoods of Pennsylvania ... unfortunately.
5,616 posts, read 3,161,589 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinacled View Post
An apologist lives on faith alone. I Personally speak from experience. I was once agnostic. Even claimed atheism when I became bitter of the circumstances in my life. But deep down I felt there had to be more. Once I began to seek God, my circumstance's worsened exponentially. Over a matter of years my environment attacked me as if jealous. Peers , family, friends,
It was warfare. But without spiritual armor logic failed me. If I went to a H.r. for a work related problem they hung up on me. The same for all fields I walked through.
I am stubborn so I kept on for awhile with my own rational moral code. My very mind was a prison. When I woke up I realized the supernatural FORCES were attacking me.
So I called out loud God I need your help, this is insanity. And just like that things changed and I saw it. But I was young and complacent and more importantly young. Over time I developed a relationship with God by watching the very environment around me.
And what do you say to people who have your problems - and even worse problems - who have called out to God and received absolutely bupkiss in response?

I hear these kinds of stories all the time - but like rags to riches stories, you only hear about the successes. Rarely do you get to hear of the tens of thousands of people who bleated out pleas to God and had their life changed not one iota.
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