Christianity vs. Moral Relativism/Conversations with God

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krynn9000
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Christianity vs. Moral Relativism/Conversations with God

#1

Post by krynn9000 » Sun Jun 04, 2006 10:23 pm

Has anyone ever read the book Conversations with God? Well, anyway I finally "broke the ice" and was able to talk to a good friend of mine about God, and her spiritual experiences. It's one of the first times I have been able to witness to someone and it was great! She told me that she used to be Catholic and had some of the same problems with the church that I actually do, and one of the reasons she left was this book, Conversations with God.

The main argument that she gave me (the gist of the book) is that apparently God decided to create the universe in order to learn more about himself. We are all essentially part of God (which is I guess Pantheism) and there is really no good or evil, and no hell.

I talked with her about why I believe Christianity to be objectively true, but what are the main issues with her faith that I should bring up? She is open to hearing my justifications. Personally I think that Christians claim absolute truths, and this book about relativism is really just someone's claim.

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#2

Post by Canuckster1127 » Sun Jun 04, 2006 10:40 pm

I have read the book.

It is basically a conversation between the author and "god" in which the author asks questions and then "channels" through himself the answers of "god." The small g is intentional. The answers are certainly not consistent with the revelation God gave us in His Bible.

The basic thrust of the message is universalism, pantheism and new age values that reflect much of the common teachings you would expect.

What is different about this work, is that it in effect claims to be "revelation" directly from "god" validating these beliefs.

It denies absolutes. Elevates tolerance to the master virtue to be held to in all situations. It denies any special deity of Christ. It elevates other prophetic voices as equal to Christ's. It denies hell. It denies judgment. It denies sin. It proclaims man to be basically good.

It is not Christian in any sense of the word. Period.

It is heresy.

I would suggest when dealing with someone who has been influenced by it that you approach things by asking questions and establishing what the Bible has to say.

The existence of absolutes is a good place to start. Maybe an even better one is to ask them to read the Gospel of John and discuss the claims Jesus made regarding Himself. Ask them, how Jesus could be a good teacher if he lied about who He was and how He could be tolerant if he claimed Himself to be the exclusive path to God.

Ask her what it was about the Catholic Church that drove her to seek another source. Address those needs in the context the Scripture and how they are met there.

Hope that helps.

Bart
Dogmatism is the comfortable intellectual framework of self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is more decadent than the worst sexual sin. ~ Dan Allender

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krynn9000
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#3

Post by krynn9000 » Sun Jun 04, 2006 11:13 pm

Thank you so much for your detailed post regarding the book. I will continue to talk about absolutes and address her concerns regarding Catholicism (most were simply that it seemed too judgemental)

What is the best way to go about refuting the total lack of objective morality that the author presents? I think in many ways my friend would prefer the reality presented by the author, so I need to establish that is position is simply bogus.

It is odd when she described it to me that basically this is the worldview that most non-Christians take.

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#4

Post by Canuckster1127 » Sun Jun 04, 2006 11:21 pm

krynn9000 wrote:Thank you so much for your detailed post regarding the book. I will continue to talk about absolutes and address her concerns regarding Catholicism (most were simply that it seemed too judgemental)

What is the best way to go about refuting the total lack of objective morality that the author presents? I think in many ways my friend would prefer the reality presented by the author, so I need to establish that is position is simply bogus.

It is odd when she described it to me that basically this is the worldview that most non-Christians take.
The best answer I can give is to use Scripture and show where the philosophy of this book conflicts with Scripture.

There are good foundations in Scripture for balancing judgment with God's love. Demonstrate that it is not either/or. There is a balance.

The question here is authority.

What authority does this book offer?

What authority does the Bible offer?
Dogmatism is the comfortable intellectual framework of self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is more decadent than the worst sexual sin. ~ Dan Allender

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#5

Post by SUGAAAAA » Mon Jun 05, 2006 11:55 am

Canuckster and others who have read the book,

Was the author really conversing with God?
Rice is great if you're really hungry and want to eat two thousand of something.

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#6

Post by Canuckster1127 » Mon Jun 05, 2006 12:04 pm

SUGAAAAA wrote:Canuckster and others who have read the book,

Was the author really conversing with God?
No.

God cannot contradict Himself.
The Bible is God's Word.
Conversations with God contradicts God's word.
Therefore the author was not conversing with God.

The author either created the diologue themselves

or

The author was conversing with someone or something else.
Dogmatism is the comfortable intellectual framework of self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is more decadent than the worst sexual sin. ~ Dan Allender

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Re:

#7

Post by Darknote » Wed Dec 29, 2010 12:31 am

Canuckster1127 wrote:
SUGAAAAA wrote:Canuckster and others who have read the book,

Was the author really conversing with God?
No.

God cannot contradict Himself.
The Bible is God's Word.
Conversations with God contradicts God's word.
Therefore the author was not conversing with God.So tell me, how exactly do you know the bible is God's words, or Her only words for that matter?
Do you have any evidence to support this? Ofcourse you do not, the same applies to Atheism, you cannot prove God exist or does not exist (because, hehe, Godel's theory is that from 5 truths, only 3 can be explained and proven).
Anyway, I wanted to chat with you guys about how God really is, I mean, why would God be so judgmental? What would God gain from throwing those who do not follow His words, into hell for eternity? If He is a perfect being, why would He make unperfect beings (ofcourse, your so called "Word of God" says its us). wouldn't that make God unperfect? The follower of every religion in this world, has 1 problem, they always follow someone else's word, and takes that for granted, I tell you, no one who ever read CwG by Neale has never questioned existence itself. Even you Canuckster, have you read the books? From how you answer, you only read reviews of that book, probably reviews based on people just searching the books, not reading them completely.
PS: Sorry, this topic was made in 2006 xD I just wanted to start a little chat, altough I guess the admins are gonna close this topic :P

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Re: Re:

#8

Post by musician » Sat Jan 01, 2011 4:38 am

Darknote wrote:The follower of every religion in this world, has 1 problem, they always follow someone else's word, and takes that for granted,"
This statement could be extended to all but the most self-isolated of human beings. When it has come to matters of faith to me, the people whom I have "followed" have also demonstrated the most wisdom, compassion, and respect for others out of my encounters.

- N
The atheist says to his wife at night: "Darling, inasmuch as it is merely an expression made imperative by my brain chemistry; "I LOVE you!"

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Re: Christianity vs. Moral Relativism/Conversations with God

#9

Post by jlay » Sat Jan 01, 2011 6:15 am

Dark,

You ask a lot of questions in this post. Have you taken the time to read through the main page, as many of these questions are addressed there and are also addressed in other threads.
Do you have any evidence to support this?
The name of this forum is "Evidence For God from Science." So, I would certainly think so.
Yes, there is evidence that the bible is revelation from God to man.
Of course you do not, the same applies to Atheism, you cannot prove God exist or does not exist
This is the fallacy of predjudicial conjecture. Don't be expected to be taken sincerely if you are going to make such statements.
why would God be so judgmental? What would God gain from throwing those who do not follow His words, into hell for eternity? If He is a perfect being,
I guess I could be snarky, and ask why you are being so judgmental of God. But, it is a good question. In fact it is a essential tenet of the Christian faith.
-I'm certain that if you want to focus on any one of these things at a time you can at least get a better understanding of why we conclude what we do. But a great suggestion would be to lay back on conjecture.

Bart is a book reading machine. In the four years since this thread was active, I can only fathom how many he has read. I'd be careful about challenging him on that point.
-“The Bible treated allegorically becomes putty in the hands of the exegete.” John Walvoord

"I'm not saying scientists don't overstate their results. They do. And it's understandable, too...If you spend years working toward a certain goal and make no progress, of course you are going to spin your results in a positive light." Ivellious

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Re: Christianity vs. Moral Relativism/Conversations with God

#10

Post by Canuckster1127 » Sat Jan 01, 2011 8:34 am

Hi Dark,

To answer your questions, yes I did read the books. I read all three of them. It's been quite some time ago and to be honest, I wanted to find something more to them when I read them. I'm not saying that everything in them is by itself of no value or completely untrue. I think you can find some elements in them that could be said to have some "truth" and some value.

The problem is, the book is not given as a commentary on the authors thoughts about God. The book is presented as a direct revelation or preserved conversation with God Himself. Given that claim, there's pretty much an all or nothing element to it. If it's claimed that God is the participant in the conversation then it follows that everything that God says must be true. If the books contradict the Bible then it leads to the question, which is right, this book or the Bible (of course both could be wrong, but I'm not considering that possibility, because I am accepting that the Bible is correct.)

The book is new age and post-modern in many elements. I don't necessarily think that "post-modern" is a dirty word, but in the sense that this book represents it, it isn't a positive for me.

To be honest as I look back at this thread which was written in 2006 I can see some of the progression on thought in my own life since then. I've actually begun to shy away from using the term "God's Word" in relationship to the Bible. The reason for that which you can see in another thread I started back a few months ago is that I believe that the Bible itself reserves that term for Jesus. At some levels it's splitting hairs, because my view of the Bible hasn't changed, although I suspect others here would agree that I've become a little less dogmatic on some issues and am willing to question not the Bible itself but how some of our traditional views of it may need to take on some willingness to differentiate between what is the Bible itself and what is the interpretation that we apply to it. We must be willing to reexamine our interpretations and that willingness is not a reflection upon the Bible itself in terms of diminishing it in it's proper role.

That's a far cry however to what Walsch's (spelling?) books are doing. They are starting at a place outside of the Bible and outside of Jesus Christ and representing a conversation (not simply as a literary device) directly between the author and one whom the author represents as God. When you make that claim you're no longer functioning as a commentator, you're assuming a relationship with God that is what the Prophets in the OT had in some instances and you're also presenting yourself as the link between Man and God on a level that makes some claims for yourself.

The strongest level of criticism that I can give the book is that it contradicts many things that the Bible says directly. It also contradicts many things that Jesus said directly. It's irreconcilable. What is more, as someone who loves Christ and wishes to follow Him, and this is not a highly "scientific" comment on my part, on a relational level, it just doesn't sound like the God and Christ I know.

So hopefully that clears up a little more for you. To return again to your original question, yes I've read the books. No, you're mistaken in trying to diminish my comments as someone who's just criticizing books based on what they've read about what others say (which is something that cheeses me off too when I see it).

At the very least, I note above that I did state clearly that I read the book, so I hope you'll understand if I take some issue with your suggestion that I didn't and am just responding based on reviews. Frankly, and I don't say this out of a sense of pride, I'm the sort of person who writes reviews, not one who relies upon others to tell me what to think. If you check my signature link it will take you to my blog where there's about 100 reviews or so or you can look me up on Amazon where I have about 250 reviews posted from over the last 5 years or so. I review maybe about half of the books I read so I guess that means I read about 100 books a year. About 2 a week. That's about right I think although I go through seasons and spurts, and I've slowed down some lately because of professional endevours.

I don't mind if you disagree with my opinion on something. I hope you'll understand if I do get a little miffed when someone in effect calls me a liar by directly contradicting a simple claim like whether I've read a book or not. That's pretty petty and rude and frankly not likely to lead to any meaningful conversation between us if there isn't even that basic level of respect.

bart
Dogmatism is the comfortable intellectual framework of self-righteousness. Self-righteousness is more decadent than the worst sexual sin. ~ Dan Allender

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