what is a believer?

Healthy skepticism of ALL worldviews is good. Skeptical of non-belief like found in Atheism? Post your challenging questions. Responses are encouraged.
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RickD
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Re: what is a believer?

Postby RickD » Tue Oct 04, 2016 3:18 pm

Belief is not a choice, by definition. But we choose to believe what we believe. I think that's what the whole disagreement is.

I choose to believe the sun will rise in the morning. I choose to believe that I will not die tomorrow. I choose to believe God exists.
1 Corinthians 1:9
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Re: what is a believer?

Postby abelcainsbrother » Tue Oct 04, 2016 3:36 pm

If a person believes in God they've chosen to believe it but it is the same for those who do not believe in God they also choose. It has nothing to do with whether or not I say so either way. Nobody can get away from choosing what they accept or not but atheists/agnostics/skeptics deny they choose to not believe in God and explain to you why they are excluded and do not need evidence behind the choice they've made to reject God. It is delusion,no pun intended.Everybody that makes a choice to accept something has reasons for why they chose to accept it,they want to know they've chosen correctly and they think they have,except atheists/agnostics/skeptics.

If you ask atheists/agnostics/skeptics why they choose to accept the theory of evolution they will give try to give you evidence and reasons why they chose to accept it. But ask them for evidence and reasons why they've chosen to not believe in God and they deny they chose it and explain to you why they don't have to have any evidence to choose to not believe in God.
Hebrews 12:2-3 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross,despising the shame,and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

2nd Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not,lest the light of this glorious gospel of Christ,who is the image of God,should shine unto them.

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby Jac3510 » Tue Oct 04, 2016 4:14 pm

RickD wrote:Belief is not a choice, by definition. But we choose to believe what we believe. I think that's what the whole disagreement is.

I choose to believe the sun will rise in the morning. I choose to believe that I will not die tomorrow. I choose to believe God exists.

I don't think you choose to believe that the sun will rise tomorrow, Rick. Let me demonstrate. Stop believing it. Just for the next 24 hours. Choose to believe that the sun will NOT rise. If you turn out to be wrong in that belief, it will be a trivial matter. I want you to believe that the sun will NOT rise, and then to test if you actually believed the sun didn't rise, let me know how surprised you are tomorrow when it actually happens. After all, that's what being surprised is -- to be encountered with something you didn't expect, which is to say, to be encountered with something you didn't believe would happen.

I await your (lack of) shock tomorrow morning, because you will discover, frankly, that you can't choose what you believe.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby RickD » Tue Oct 04, 2016 4:28 pm

Jac3510 wrote:
RickD wrote:Belief is not a choice, by definition. But we choose to believe what we believe. I think that's what the whole disagreement is.

I choose to believe the sun will rise in the morning. I choose to believe that I will not die tomorrow. I choose to believe God exists.

I don't think you choose to believe that the sun will rise tomorrow, Rick. Let me demonstrate. Stop believing it. Just for the next 24 hours. Choose to believe that the sun will NOT rise. If you turn out to be wrong in that belief, it will be a trivial matter. I want you to believe that the sun will NOT rise, and then to test if you actually believed the sun didn't rise, let me know how surprised you are tomorrow when it actually happens. After all, that's what being surprised is -- to be encountered with something you didn't expect, which is to say, to be encountered with something you didn't believe would happen.

I await your (lack of) shock tomorrow morning, because you will discover, frankly, that you can't choose what you believe.


I believe God exists. I've weighed the evidence. The evidence on the side of God existing, outweighs anything on the side of God not existing. So I choose to believe God exists.

Just like anything else. We see the issues. We weigh the facts. We use logic to interpret the facts, and choose to believe something based on what our logic tells us.

I don't see what the controversy is in that.
1 Corinthians 1:9
9 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Audie wrote:
"Christianity is not a joke, but it has some very poor representatives."


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Re: what is a believer?

Postby Jac3510 » Tue Oct 04, 2016 4:40 pm

RickD wrote:
Jac3510 wrote:
RickD wrote:Belief is not a choice, by definition. But we choose to believe what we believe. I think that's what the whole disagreement is.

I choose to believe the sun will rise in the morning. I choose to believe that I will not die tomorrow. I choose to believe God exists.

I don't think you choose to believe that the sun will rise tomorrow, Rick. Let me demonstrate. Stop believing it. Just for the next 24 hours. Choose to believe that the sun will NOT rise. If you turn out to be wrong in that belief, it will be a trivial matter. I want you to believe that the sun will NOT rise, and then to test if you actually believed the sun didn't rise, let me know how surprised you are tomorrow when it actually happens. After all, that's what being surprised is -- to be encountered with something you didn't expect, which is to say, to be encountered with something you didn't believe would happen.

I await your (lack of) shock tomorrow morning, because you will discover, frankly, that you can't choose what you believe.


I believe God exists. I've weighed the evidence. The evidence on the side of God existing, outweighs anything on the side of God not existing. So I choose to believe God exists.

Just like anything else. We see the issues. We weigh the facts. We use logic to interpret the facts, and choose to believe something based on what our logic tells us.

I don't see what the controversy is in that.

You believe God exists. The logic is inescapable. You didn't choose to believe it. Precisely because the logic is so overwhelming you can't choose not to believe it.

Again, I challenge you to choose not to believe in God for 24 hours. You'll find you can't do it. And, again, the reason is that belief is an act of the intellect, which is not a choice; choosing is an act of the will. You can choose to reject a judgment from the intellect. You can choose to give assent to a judgment from the intellect. But you can't choose what the judgment of the intellect will be. To say you can is to confuse what the intellect is with what the will is.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby Kurieuo » Tue Oct 04, 2016 4:42 pm

What is the I in "I believe" or "I choose to believe"?
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby Jac3510 » Tue Oct 04, 2016 5:10 pm

The person.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby RickD » Tue Oct 04, 2016 5:14 pm

choose-
pick out or select (someone or something) as being the best or most appropriate of two or more alternatives.


Two alternatives:
1) Trump as president, will be less damaging than Clinton.

2) Clinton as president, will be less damaging than Trump.


I choose to believe#1.
1 Corinthians 1:9
9 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Audie wrote:
"Christianity is not a joke, but it has some very poor representatives."


St. Richard the Sarcastic--The Patron Saint of Irony

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby Jac3510 » Tue Oct 04, 2016 5:15 pm

quod gratis asseritur, Rick. You don't choose that. You do believe it, I'm sure. But, once again, I challenge you to believe that Clinton will be less damaging. You'll find you can't.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby RickD » Tue Oct 04, 2016 5:21 pm

Jac3510 wrote:quod gratis asseritur, Rick. You don't choose that. You do believe it, I'm sure. But, once again, I challenge you to believe that Clinton will be less damaging. You'll find you can't.

I did choose that though. I looked at and weighed the evidence. I choose to believe, after weighing the evidence, that Trump will be less damaging than Clinton. I can't choose to believe Clinton would be less damaging, because the facts don't point that way for me.
1 Corinthians 1:9
9 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Audie wrote:
"Christianity is not a joke, but it has some very poor representatives."


St. Richard the Sarcastic--The Patron Saint of Irony

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby abelcainsbrother » Tue Oct 04, 2016 5:42 pm

Choosing which is more true or not comes before belief. You cannot believe in something and deny you chose to believe it and you can choose not to believe despite the evidence and even not care if you even have any evidence you are right,but the latter would be delusional.

Delusional
http://www.webmd.com/schizophrenia/guid ... l-disorder

I chose to believe in Jesus and the salvation he offers after hearing about him and I decided to believe based on the info about him I was given and now I have evidence I made the correct choice.
Hebrews 12:2-3 Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith;who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross,despising the shame,and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.

2nd Corinthians 4:4 In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which believe not,lest the light of this glorious gospel of Christ,who is the image of God,should shine unto them.

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby Jac3510 » Tue Oct 04, 2016 6:15 pm

RickD wrote:
Jac3510 wrote:quod gratis asseritur, Rick. You don't choose that. You do believe it, I'm sure. But, once again, I challenge you to believe that Clinton will be less damaging. You'll find you can't.

I did choose that though. I looked at and weighed the evidence. I choose to believe, after weighing the evidence, that Trump will be less damaging than Clinton. I can't choose to believe Clinton would be less damaging, because the facts don't point that way for me.

Right, so you did not choose. You looked at the evidence (that was a choice). But you were no more free to conclude after looking at the evidence that Clinton was the safer pick than you are to conclude that the sun won't rise tomorrow. Now, you could have conflicting beliefs and choose to submit your belief about Trump to an appeals process, of sorts. You could look for evidence to support the notion that Clinton is the safer choice so as to try to convince yourself of that. But you couldn't just choose to believe it, any more than you chose to believe that Trump is less damaging. Again, you could choose not to vote for Trump anyway. You could choose to vote for Clinton or abstain from voting or vote third party or write in or whatever. But the belief itself, that Trump is the safer candidate, was not something you chose.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby Kurieuo » Tue Oct 04, 2016 6:48 pm

Kurieuo wrote:What is the I in "I believe" or "I choose to believe"?

Jac wrote:The person.


Yes, well, that is kind of tautologous. But, I was more meaning, what is a "person" comprised of. I sincerely believe differences between you and Rick would be settled exploring the ontology of a person. Not in a soul-body substance manner, but rather the properties of a person.

To be explicit, are we all mind, purely rational beings? Are we simply CPUs performing logical calculations and this we believe. No, we're clearly emotive and passionate also, what we could call "the heart". We're both rational and passionate beings.

So then, if agreeable, what is Rick saying when he says "I choose to believe..."?

I.e., Is Rick saying the person's choice (the "I choosing") is based upon a logical deduction of reason alone (a person is purely a rational being)? In which case he can't choose to believe the Sun won't rise tomorrow because it goes against good reason and knowledge.

Or is Rick saying a person's choice is based upon their heart alone (a person is purely an emotional passionate being)? In which case, if a person was passionate enough then they could indeed believe the Sun wouldn't rise tomorrow.

Or does Rick see a person (the "I") as comprised of both heart and reason. In which case, for example, the heart of a person provides direction based upon their feelings, intuitions, passions and the like and reason feeds into such.

What seems to me, is we do choose to go a certain direction based upon our desires and passions, however also being rational creatures our hearts are checked by the truth of reality which can often be unforgiving. Leaving us no option, but to choose to believe otherwise than our hearts desire to believe.

Somewhere in all that, unpacking matters further like I have, I'd think you and Rick might actually reach agreement of some sort.
"Whoever will call on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:13)

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby Jac3510 » Tue Oct 04, 2016 7:14 pm

I doubt we'd reach an agreement, actually. The "heart" doesn't enter into it, at least, not as you are using the term. Emotions are arational. They are not irrational, as some hold. They are arational. They are "passions" in the classical sense of the word. That is, they are psychosomatic responses to some (intellectual) judgment. They are, in this, distinct from "feelings" generally. "Feelings" are somatic only. Sleepiness and pain are feelings, not emotions. They are purely bodily. Love and revulsion are emotions, because while they (necessarily) are somatic, just as feelings are, they are set off by a psychological component. I love this or am repulsed by that because of what I judge to be true about it. I fear a dog attacking me because I believe that such will put me in danger. My body then produces a physiological response to that belief: fear. That fear motivates me to make a choice--that is, it encourages my will to choose a course of action. My intellect has judged (I believe--I don't choose to believe) that running from the dog is the best course of action. My fear motivates me (powerfully) to accept that course of action. I then choose to so act in accordance with that judgment.

Nothing Rick has said, and no examples he has provided, suggest anything other than the above is true. It is, bluntly, just false to claim that we choose to believe anything. It is, again, a confusion of the functions of the intellect and the will. I cannot say this enough: the intellect does not choose, and the will does not judge. Rather, the intellect judges and the will chooses. To say we choose to believe is to make choosing a property of the intellect, which is just a confusion, as you say, of the properties of what it means to be a person.
Proinsias wrote:I don't think you are hearing me. Preference for ice cream is a moral issue

And that, brothers and sisters, is the kind of foolishness you get people who insist on denying biblical theism. A good illustration of any as the length people will go to avoid acknowledging basic truths.

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Re: what is a believer?

Postby RickD » Tue Oct 04, 2016 7:39 pm

Maybe I'm arguing for indirect doxastic voluntarism.

y=P~
1 Corinthians 1:9
9 God is faithful, through whom you were called into fellowship with His Son, Jesus Christ our Lord.

Audie wrote:
"Christianity is not a joke, but it has some very poor representatives."


St. Richard the Sarcastic--The Patron Saint of Irony


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