Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

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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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#31

Post by 1over137 » Sat Dec 12, 2015 11:47 am

When I was an atheist, (or considered myself atheist) I was attracted by my curiosity. I always had many questions (and bombarded my Christian friend for many many years). Of course, I did not accept answers without further exploration and thinking. My scientific nature does not allow that.

There are many big questions. One of them: Why the heck are few natural laws (so symmetric and wonderful - talking physics now) behind our universe?
But examine everything carefully; hold fast to that which is good.
-- 1 Thessalonians 5:21

For I am confident of this very thing, that He who began a good work in you will perfect it until the day of Christ Jesus.
-- Philippians 1:6

#foreverinmyheart

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#32

Post by Storyteller » Sat Dec 12, 2015 3:44 pm

ed..

Maybe you're right and there is no God. Maybe we need God because without Gid it's all, just a bit, well, pointless.

If God doesn't exist then how do we define goodness, and evil, love, hate, all that sfuff? As far as I know we,as a species, are pretty unique in the way we view the world, Why?

I've always thought that atheist was someone who claims God doesn't exist or doesn't believe He does, an agnostic as someone who just doesn't know.

I am immensely curious as to why you dont believe in God. Why youre so sure. (and I'm not asking you to prove anything, just explain it to me).
Faith is a knowledge within the heart, beyond the reach of proof - Kahlil Gibran

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#33

Post by melanie » Sun Dec 13, 2015 6:11 am

Kenny wrote:
melanie wrote:
Kenny wrote:
Nessa wrote:
Kenny wrote: Not so much the religion itself, but sometimes the people of Christianity can be an attraction.... but then that kinda works both ways, some of them can have the opposite effect.

Ken
Specifics?
I think for some people Christianity gives them a reason to be their best. I've seen people who were jerks, all of a sudden take their religion seriously (aka got saved) and notice a distinct positive difference in their behavior. Even when they get mad you can sometimes see the jerk trying to come out, but they suppress it and they handle the situation in a more peaceful manner because they feel an obligation to represent their religion in a more positive light, because others might judge their religion by their behavior.
I find this attractive.

Ken
Ken, I honestly don't find that attractive.
Conformity for the basis of representation.
People behaving in a certain manner to better reflect a religious persuasion.
That's not heartfelt.
Nor sincere.
I don’t think sincerity is always the best thing. I would much rather a jerk pretend to be nice and treat others around him with respect and dignity than for him to be honest with himself, recognize he is a jerk, and offend and harm everyone around him.

Remember when your mom used to say “don’t make that face or it will stay that way”? I think there is some truth to that; if you pretend to be something you are not long enough, eventually it will become natural to you and you will no longer be pretending; you will become that person. If a jerk pretends to be nice because he wants to reflect his religion in a positive light to others, eventually it will become a little easier to be nice to other people and he will no longer be pretending anymore, he will become nice. The way I see it, whatever your motivation; always do the right thing. Even if the source of your motivation is false, a lie, built upon dishonesty; if it causes you to become helpful to your neighbor rather than harming them, I consider that a good thing. I would prefer false love over sincere hatred any day, because if my enemy pretends to smile to my face long enough, (as mom used to say) maybe his face will stay that way; maybe eventually that smile might become natural for him and his smile will be sincere.

Ken
Let me better explain my ramble :)
I agree Ken if a person is compelled to 'do better' inspite and despite themselves due to religion then this very well may be a turning point to change and better oneself and in turn reflect positively on those around them.
My religion says I should be caring..,,, therefore I will
My religion says to be loving...,, therefore I will try

But it cannot be sincere if it's done externally.
If I smile long enough I might get sore cheeks but it doesn't represent my motivations.
Personally I would prefer someone be sincerely a jerk than outwardly play nice when internally there is whole other dialogue going on.
Now I very much believe that a person can be transformed by the light and love of Christ and that transformation comes in stages and takes time. To better oneself can never be anything but beneficial for everyone, especially themselves.
But I think we do not grow or learn if we are 'playing' a part.
God doesn't need actors He needs us to be authentic.
Sometimes that means we are nice, sometimes that means we're not. It means that at times we get it right but too often we don't.

I am not a fan of BS.
I want people to real.
Real fabulous at times and a real jerk at other times.
I have seen not only in Christian circles this idea of 'playing' nice all the time. Smiles and niceties, on the outside but something entirely different going on internally.
I passionately believe in being caring, and generous, and patient and loving.
I also believe in passionately being flawed, and imperfect, and honestly ourselves.
I can work with people being themselves. Even if that's an A hole.
Then I know what's infront of me. I'm not dealing with a character but a person.

I guess what I very poorly tried to say was,
Often the 'church' puts forward through religious expectation how a person should behave and act.
We set the bar very high, not only for ourselves but everyone.
Within those circles, on a Sunday, at our best we can achieve that, but when that exterior gets chipped away, what is left?
People that struggle like everyone else.
Jesus would never have had to hang on that cross if religion took care of being the best kind of people.
We already had religion, and we played that part very well but we were still lacking, significantly.

Religion doesn't save, or make us better people.
Jesus does.
Despite ourselves.
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Storyteller (Sun Dec 13, 2015 8:16 am) • neo-x (Mon Dec 21, 2015 10:30 pm)

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#34

Post by Kenny » Sun Dec 13, 2015 6:52 am

melanie wrote:
Kenny wrote:
melanie wrote:
Kenny wrote:
Nessa wrote:
Specifics?
I think for some people Christianity gives them a reason to be their best. I've seen people who were jerks, all of a sudden take their religion seriously (aka got saved) and notice a distinct positive difference in their behavior. Even when they get mad you can sometimes see the jerk trying to come out, but they suppress it and they handle the situation in a more peaceful manner because they feel an obligation to represent their religion in a more positive light, because others might judge their religion by their behavior.
I find this attractive.

Ken
Ken, I honestly don't find that attractive.
Conformity for the basis of representation.
People behaving in a certain manner to better reflect a religious persuasion.
That's not heartfelt.
Nor sincere.
I don’t think sincerity is always the best thing. I would much rather a jerk pretend to be nice and treat others around him with respect and dignity than for him to be honest with himself, recognize he is a jerk, and offend and harm everyone around him.

Remember when your mom used to say “don’t make that face or it will stay that way”? I think there is some truth to that; if you pretend to be something you are not long enough, eventually it will become natural to you and you will no longer be pretending; you will become that person. If a jerk pretends to be nice because he wants to reflect his religion in a positive light to others, eventually it will become a little easier to be nice to other people and he will no longer be pretending anymore, he will become nice. The way I see it, whatever your motivation; always do the right thing. Even if the source of your motivation is false, a lie, built upon dishonesty; if it causes you to become helpful to your neighbor rather than harming them, I consider that a good thing. I would prefer false love over sincere hatred any day, because if my enemy pretends to smile to my face long enough, (as mom used to say) maybe his face will stay that way; maybe eventually that smile might become natural for him and his smile will be sincere.

Ken
Let me better explain my ramble :)
I agree Ken if a person is compelled to 'do better' inspite and despite themselves due to religion then this very well may be a turning point to change and better oneself and in turn reflect positively on those around them.
My religion says I should be caring..,,, therefore I will
My religion says to be loving...,, therefore I will try

But it cannot be sincere if it's done externally.
If I smile long enough I might get sore cheeks but it doesn't represent my motivations.
Personally I would prefer someone be sincerely a jerk than outwardly play nice when internally there is whole other dialogue going on.
Now I very much believe that a person can be transformed by the light and love of Christ and that transformation comes in stages and takes time. To better oneself can never be anything but beneficial for everyone, especially themselves.
But I think we do not grow or learn if we are 'playing' a part.
God doesn't need actors He needs us to be authentic.
Sometimes that means we are nice, sometimes that means we're not. It means that at times we get it right but too often we don't.

I am not a fan of BS.
I want people to real.
Real fabulous at times and a real jerk at other times.
I have seen not only in Christian circles this idea of 'playing' nice all the time. Smiles and niceties, on the outside but something entirely different going on internally.
I passionately believe in being caring, and generous, and patient and loving.
I also believe in passionately being flawed, and imperfect, and honestly ourselves.
I can work with people being themselves. Even if that's an A hole.
Then I know what's infront of me. I'm not dealing with a character but a person.

I guess what I very poorly tried to say was,
Often the 'church' puts forward through religious expectation how a person should behave and act.
We set the bar very high, not only for ourselves but everyone.
Within those circles, on a Sunday, at our best we can achieve that, but when that exterior gets chipped away, what is left?
People that struggle like everyone else.
Jesus would never have had to hang on that cross if religion took care of being the best kind of people.
We already had religion, and we played that part very well but we were still lacking, significantly.

Religion doesn't save, or make us better people.
Jesus does.
Despite ourselves.
Thanks for clearing that up Melanie. I am reminded of a time I was required to work with a bigot. Even though he didn’t like me because of my skin color, and I didn’t like him because of his bigotry, we both needed the job, and were required to work with each other so while working we had to pretend to like each other.
Even though our cordial attitudes towards each other was initially fake, eventually after hanging around each other long enough and finding we had more in common than we thought, he eventually began to change his attitude towards me and see me as more than just a skin color, and my attitude towards him changed when I no longer found him offensive to be around, and we eventually became friends.
Today I no longer work with him, but when I occasionally see him around town, I still consider him my friend, and he considers me his; but had he not pretended to like me in the beginning, he would not have changed his behavior towards people who look like me.
Don't get me wrong; I like people who keep it real as much as anyone else, but sometimes when I look at situations in the real world, keepin’ it real isn’t always the best solution in a world full of diverse problems; that’s how I see it.


Ken
RickD wrote
"What can be asserted without evidence can be dismissed without evidence".

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#35

Post by edwardmurphy » Mon Dec 21, 2015 8:12 pm

B. W. wrote:So much of the discussion revolves around defining what a lack of belief in god/gods is and how is that different from not being a disbelief in gods or a denial of gods?

This is simply doublespeak.
It's all about burden of proof. If I say "I don't believe in gods" then it sounds like I'm skeptical of a claim that someone else made, so I have no burden of proof. If I say "Gods don't exist" then it sounds like I'm making a claim of my own so I'm suddenly expected to defend it and I'm a fool if I can't. But you're right - they're pretty much the same statement.

The main difference is the response that they generate from theists. The former will most likely get you labeled an agnostic, which is irritating. The latter is much worse. If you say "God doesn't exist" then you immediately get bombarded with that "the fool hath said" quote, along with demands that you prove "your claim" and patronizing lectures about how Atheism (sic) is a position of faith, too. Once you've heard all of that nonsense a few times you start to get a bit weary of it all, which leads to a certain wariness and perhaps a bit of dissembling.

So let's lay it all out on the table. I am an atheist. I think that gods were created by men. I don't think that they exist. I can't prove that because clever theists have had thousands of years to define their terms in such a way as to make it impossible. That doesn't bother me in the least. I know that there are theists who will claim that they have used logic, or prophecy, or metaphysics to prove that god exists. I am unimpressed. Prophecy is bunk, logic can also be used to make the unassailable claim that there's a dragon in my garage, and while metaphysics makes for some interesting conversations it's not set up to prove anything. Theists are making an extraordinary claim, and I'm not going to simply take their word for it.

Regarding that blanking quote -
That blanking quote wrote:The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.
BS. I'm not corrupt, I've done nothing abominable, and I've doneth plenty of good. I'm not a saint, but I wake up every day and work hard to be the best husband, father, and man that I can be, simply because I think that that's the right thing to do. I don't need god to tell me to be a good person. I have a moral compass of my own.

Regarding prophecy, I suppose that you could call the creation of Israel a fulfilled prophecy, but somehow that rings hollow to me. Israel exists today because Holocaust guilt compelled the world powers to allow the surviving Jews to complete the prophecy themselves. If that's a fulfilled prophecy then it follows that the Holocaust was god's way of building support for Zionism. That's insane.
Hortator wrote:And atheists are....how do I say this in G-rated terms? I can't, so I won't. :censored:
I get it. I feel the same way about hypocrites who think that their beliefs are special and should be treated with the utmost deference, but see no reason to extend the courtesy to anyone else. Sometimes it's hard not to swear.
Hortator wrote:So, removing all the boring ideology behind disbelief, the classification of unbelievers ultimately comes down to temperament, good-humor, disposition, and my favorite word, deference. The more of these traits you have, the closer you are to agnostic. The less you have, the closer you are to atheist. And if you have no idea what the heck I just said, then you're a simple unbeliever :mrgreen:
I guess I must fit your definition of atheist, because I'm not going to be deferential here. I know exactly what you just said - you're not nearly as clever as you think you are - and it's garbage. I don't believe in your god or any other, but my good humor, disposition, and deference vary according to circumstance.

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#36

Post by B. W. » Tue Dec 22, 2015 12:34 am

Well Ed. there is enough proof of God's existence all around you as well as in you. It is simply denial, plain and simple stubborn denial of the evidence. It is like sticking the proverbial fingers in the ears,closing the eyes and loudly saying La Lal, Lal. Is how you describe the type of atheism you appear to be associated with. Your cynical and sarcastic tone on line here is empirical evidence that such denial exist.

As for a nation of ancient people who have been scattered twice into foreign lands and to retain their religion and their identity is beyond all the odds. Then regathered into there own homeland a second time retaining their religion and identity is amazing, would you agree this is remotely peculiar?

The add to it the vitriol hate people have toward the Jewish people, and for no real reason, shouldn't that say something to you? You claim you are a decent a person yet you appear to be filled with the same disdain for the Jewish people so are you anti Semitic? How is that decent?

Next, since you are so good and decent why do you seek to destroy other people's faith in the Judaic/Christian God? What is causing your hate and disdain and does not that destroy all your claims of goodness and decency when you are not that way to us here on this Form in the manner and tone you use as now against the Jewish people too?

Do you realize Ed that your tone towards the Jewish people regaining Israel by 1948 as their own nation was due to what, Holocaust guilt is absurd. Please take the time to actually study history for a change. So what I am hearing you say is this, Israel and the Jewish people do not have a right to exist at all - is that really it Ed?

You say you are not corrupt, yet support the death of the unborn thru abortion, shower disdain and mocking contempt upon Christians on this forum and the Jewish people proves you are not. Can you be honest?

What good is being good Ed when after you die you cease to exist so the what heck? You say you haven't been a saint so that erases all the good you claim to have. Why be good Ed? Because it makes you feel good about yourself and you can die in peace knowing all you ever done will be forgotten? Do you understand how silly it is to claim goodness and decency yet cannot live up to it? Well, at least you think you will get away with it since all mortal life ceases to exist after death. It doesn't happen like that Ed, you do not cease to exist and time will prove me correct on this. Why take such a chance?

No Ed, there is a deeper reason you enjoy to steal faith away, mock God, show disdainful deference towards Jews and Christians. Again, the folks who run this forum have been decent to you and you are still here posting. Much grace has been shown you and as you dish it out, it has been dished back out to you. Expect that. As I sated before elsewhere, show respect, listen, and be treated with the same, if not, expect the dung flung back.

I still have not heard your real reason you hate Christianity except for the same worn out talking points one can copy from most militant atheist websites. Maybe you have and I missed that post so if you could link it to me or re-post the real reason, we might actually get somewhere and actually have a decent conversation.
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Furstentum Liechtenstein (Tue Dec 22, 2015 4:38 am)
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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#37

Post by Mallz » Tue Dec 22, 2015 2:25 am

Israel exists today because Holocaust guilt compelled the world powers to allow the surviving Jews to complete the prophecy themselves
Have you even heard of the Balfour Declaration..? :shakehead:
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Furstentum Liechtenstein (Tue Dec 22, 2015 4:38 am)

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#38

Post by Storyteller » Tue Dec 22, 2015 5:17 am

edwardmurphy wrote:
B. W. wrote:So much of the discussion revolves around defining what a lack of belief in god/gods is and how is that different from not being a disbelief in gods or a denial of gods?

This is simply doublespeak.
It's all about burden of proof. If I say "I don't believe in gods" then it sounds like I'm skeptical of a claim that someone else made, so I have no burden of proof. If I say "Gods don't exist" then it sounds like I'm making a claim of my own so I'm suddenly expected to defend it and I'm a fool if I can't. But you're right - they're pretty much the same statement.

The main difference is the response that they generate from theists. The former will most likely get you labeled an agnostic, which is irritating. The latter is much worse. If you say "God doesn't exist" then you immediately get bombarded with that "the fool hath said" quote, along with demands that you prove "your claim" and patronizing lectures about how Atheism (sic) is a position of faith, too. Once you've heard all of that nonsense a few times you start to get a bit weary of it all, which leads to a certain wariness and perhaps a bit of dissembling.
Why is being labelled an agnostic irritating? Is unbeliever better?
edwardmurphy wrote:So let's lay it all out on the table. I am an atheist. I think that gods were created by men. I don't think that they exist. I can't prove that because clever theists have had thousands of years to define their terms in such a way as to make it impossible. That doesn't bother me in the least. I know that there are theists who will claim that they have used logic, or prophecy, or metaphysics to prove that god exists. I am unimpressed. Prophecy is bunk, logic can also be used to make the unassailable claim that there's a dragon in my garage, and while metaphysics makes for some interesting conversations it's not set up to prove anything. Theists are making an extraordinary claim, and I'm not going to simply take their word for it.

Regarding that blanking quote -
That blanking quote wrote:The fool hath said in his heart, There is no God. They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good.
BS. I'm not corrupt, I've done nothing abominable, and I've doneth plenty of good. I'm not a saint, but I wake up every day and work hard to be the best husband, father, and man that I can be, simply because I think that that's the right thing to do. I don't need god to tell me to be a good person. I have a moral compass of my own.
Good compared to who? (serious question) I mean, depends who you`re comparing yourself to doesn`t it? Good compared to Mother Teresa? Hitler?

Regarding prophecy, I suppose that you could call the creation of Israel a fulfilled prophecy, but somehow that rings hollow to me. Israel exists today because Holocaust guilt compelled the world powers to allow the surviving Jews to complete the prophecy themselves. If that's a fulfilled prophecy then it follows that the Holocaust was god's way of building support for Zionism. That's insane.
Hortator wrote:And atheists are....how do I say this in G-rated terms? I can't, so I won't. :censored:
I get it. I feel the same way about hypocrites who think that their beliefs are special and should be treated with the utmost deference, but see no reason to extend the courtesy to anyone else. Sometimes it's hard not to swear.
Hortator wrote:So, removing all the boring ideology behind disbelief, the classification of unbelievers ultimately comes down to temperament, good-humor, disposition, and my favorite word, deference. The more of these traits you have, the closer you are to agnostic. The less you have, the closer you are to atheist. And if you have no idea what the heck I just said, then you're a simple unbeliever :mrgreen:
I guess I must fit your definition of atheist, because I'm not going to be deferential here. I know exactly what you just said - you're not nearly as clever as you think you are - and it's garbage. I don't believe in your god or any other, but my good humor, disposition, and deference vary according to circumstance.[/quote]

The one thing I don`t get, is why, why oh why are unbelievers sometimes treated and viewed in a negative light? Don`t get me wrong, I believe firmly that we all need Christ in our lives but we cannot expect to change anyone`s mind with condemnation and dismissing every argument.

ed? You mentioned you believe you have good morals, I believe you do, just out of interest, where do you think those morals came from?
Faith is a knowledge within the heart, beyond the reach of proof - Kahlil Gibran

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#39

Post by RickD » Tue Dec 22, 2015 9:42 am

ed wrote:
BS. I'm not corrupt, I've done nothing abominable, and I've doneth plenty of good. I'm not a saint, but I wake up every day and work hard to be the best husband, father, and man that I can be, simply because I think that that's the right thing to do. I don't need god to tell me to be a good person. I have a moral compass of my own.
This paragraph speaks volumes. You have a moral compass?

Where did this compass come from? How do you define "good"?

Basically you're saying that you have a moral compass, that tells you what "good" is. How can you possibly have a moral compass without getting it from a moral God?

Ed,

You really need to think on what you wrote. If you're honest with yourself, you can help but see that what you said points to God's existence.
John 5:24
24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.

Kenny wrote:
"You don’t need faith, logic, reason, proof, or anything else to be atheist, all you need to do is reject what someone told you."



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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#40

Post by PaulSacramento » Tue Dec 22, 2015 11:32 am

I think that it is important to remember that Christianity is NOT a moral code, though it does have a moral code.
True Christianity ( and I hate wording it like that) is about following and believing in a PERSON, put your faith in a PERSON.
An extraordinary person, yes, but a person and having a personal relationship with that person.
The Son of God, yes, God in the flesh, yes. The exact representation and image of God, yes BUT a person not a thing, not a book, not a set of rules but a person.
Jesus Christ.
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Storyteller (Tue Dec 22, 2015 11:34 am) • edwardmurphy (Wed Dec 23, 2015 5:59 pm)

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#41

Post by Hortator » Tue Dec 22, 2015 5:54 pm

You all are looking at Kenny version 2.01A
RickD wrote: This paragraph speaks volumes. You have a moral compass?

Where did this compass come from? How do you define "good"?
Science, of course! :lol:

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#42

Post by edwardmurphy » Wed Dec 23, 2015 5:58 pm

Ok, here goes...

B.W., I skimmed your rant. It seems like you took a couple of statements and read all kinds of stuff into them. As usual, I'm not going to bother responding to your list of nasty, inflammatory things that I didn't actually say.

Mallz, yes, I've heard of the Balfour Declaration. I also recall that the Jews finally resorted to illegal immigration, terrorism, and an insurgency to drive the British out 30 years later. Find me a single time in the history of the world - prior to the Holocaust - where the great powers were united in their willingness to do ANYTHING for the Jews. Christian anti-Semitism was rampant in Europe for centuries. Hitler couldn't have scapegoated the Jews in the first place if it weren't for preexisting anti-Semitism, and a lot more Jews would have survived if the Allied powers had been willing to give them sanctuary. The Allies had blood on their hands and they knew it. That knowledge pushed them to overlook Jewish terrorism, discount the potential for future turmoil in the region, and finally recognize Israel rather than stamping it out in its infancy. So yeah, Holocaust was a factor.

Storyteller, "unbeliever" is fine. It might even be better, since there's no baggage attached. Being called agnostic is mostly irritating because it's someone else trying to get into my head and tell me what I believe. That's annoying. As far as why unbelievers are sometimes viewed negatively and treated poorly, I have some thoughts, but you'd probably be better off asking someone like Horator or B.W.

Rick, I think morality is partly evolutionary and partly sociological. I think that it's reasonable to label behavior as either good for society or bad for society. Things like bad for society are immoral, while things that are good for society are moral. Things like theft, murder, rape, and adultery are overwhelmingly viewed as immoral because they weaken a society if allowed to go unchecked. When something is overwhelmingly seen as immoral I suppose that it could be called objectively immoral, or close enough to it as to make no difference.

As far as objective morality coming from god, bah, humbug. If you poll Christians across time and throughout the world you'll hear lots of contradictory, yet somehow objective, moral truths. Is slavery immoral? Not according to ancient Christians. What about birth control? Again, it depends on who you ask. I anticipate that my complaint will be brushed off with a "No true Scotsman" argument, but I'm not buying it. God's "objective" moral code is wide open to interpretation. What makes your (necessarily subjective) interpretation any better than any other interpretation?

Besides that, Christianity isn't the only game in town. There are lots of religions with lots of objective moral codes. The decision to pick one over another is completely subjective.

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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#43

Post by Philip » Wed Dec 23, 2015 7:15 pm

Edward: I think that it's reasonable to label behavior as either good for society or bad for society.
Depends upon what kind of society it is, and what kind things they consider "good" and "bad." Whether pre-war, "Christian" Europe or Nazi Germany, ridding society of Jews, being anti-Semites, were often looked at as being good, positive for society. It all has to do with what majorities are supporting what elites, as to what is considered good or bad.
Edward: When something is overwhelmingly seen as immoral I suppose that it could be called objectively immoral, or close enough to it as to make no difference.
And, as so many society's have very similar moral beliefs, that begs a question.
Ed: As far as objective morality coming from god, bah, humbug. If you poll Christians across time and throughout the world you'll hear lots of contradictory, yet somehow objective, moral truths. Is slavery immoral? Not according to ancient Christians. What about birth control? Again, it depends on who you ask.


Well, fortunately, Christian teachings come from much direct Scripture and not by mere popular sentiment or polls. People who are anti-Semites, embezzlers, wife beaters, thieves, murderers, adulterers - just because they popularly self identify as cultural Christians, it doesn't mean anything. What Scripture teaches DOES matter - that is the measure. And by that measure, many people calling themselves Christians were anything but.
Ed: God's "objective" moral code is wide open to interpretation. What makes your (necessarily subjective) interpretation any better than any other interpretation?
You will find that, when considering the basic teachings, main doctrinal points of Christianity/Scripture, you will find a remarkable agreement upon moral teachings that transcends cultures. You will even find some agreement with moral teachings of other religions. But the more Christians you see who can only see shades of gray as opposed to absolutes, the more you'll find that they don't take Scripture terribly seriously. Anyone can cherry pick whatever they want to produce the results they desire, but that doesn't mean that Scripture logically supports it.
Ed: Besides that, Christianity isn't the only game in town. There are lots of religions with lots of objective moral codes. The decision to pick one over another is completely subjective.
Of course - that is why we were given free will to make free moral decisions, as well as to decide what is true and what is not. But even small children instinctively know much of what is right and wrong.
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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#44

Post by B. W. » Sat Dec 26, 2015 1:02 pm

edwardmurphy wrote: Ok, here goes...

B.W., I skimmed your rant. It seems like you took a couple of statements and read all kinds of stuff into them. As usual, I'm not going to bother responding to your list of nasty, inflammatory things that I didn't actually say.

Mallz, yes, I've heard of the Balfour Declaration. I also recall that the Jews finally resorted to illegal immigration, terrorism, and an insurgency to drive the British out 30 years later. Find me a single time in the history of the world - prior to the Holocaust - where the great powers were united in their willingness to do ANYTHING for the Jews. Christian anti-Semitism was rampant in Europe for centuries. Hitler couldn't have scapegoated the Jews in the first place if it weren't for preexisting anti-Semitism, and a lot more Jews would have survived if the Allied powers had been willing to give them sanctuary. The Allies had blood on their hands and they knew it. That knowledge pushed them to overlook Jewish terrorism, discount the potential for future turmoil in the region, and finally recognize Israel rather than stamping it out in its infancy. So yeah, Holocaust was a factor.
Ed, one thing about a discussion forum is that no one can read body language. The words you wrote come across as anti-Jewish, therefore, let it be known that this forum will not tolerate that sort of thing. Maybe you did not mean at all to come across as anti-jewish/Israel but fact is, you did. So I questioned you on this matter.

How come the Holocaust could not the instrument God used to move the nations o except the Jewish people back into their homeland as prophesied in bible as well as the events leading to return which speak of the events that happened to the Jewish people being hunted and killed before the return as mentioned in the bible?

Your own bias is telling and is perfectly described in Rom 1;19,20,21...

What you just wrote describes that it was thoroughly impossible for the Jews to return to Israel due the hate toward the Jews as evidenced by historical records of that era, yet they did. They did so not out of guilt but rather out of mercy, however, not all nations voted for Israel's existence and then May 1948 - the Arab nations attacked Israel to exterminate them. Israel was out numbered, out gunned, yet they won this first war. How?

How in the heck did they win in 1956, 1967, 1973, 1980, etc against all odds?

In 1948, they did not have the weapons as did the Arabs had... Geeze...

edwardmurphy wrote: Storyteller, "unbeliever" is fine. It might even be better, since there's no baggage attached. Being called agnostic is mostly irritating because it's someone else trying to get into my head and tell me what I believe. That's annoying. As far as why unbelievers are sometimes viewed negatively and treated poorly, I have some thoughts, but you'd probably be better off asking someone like Horator or B.W.

Ed everyone has a reason why to their life why they become this or that. It is called a root cause. If you are not willing to share on the real reason you became an - unbeliever - then it demonstrates a objective unwillingness to actually reason with anyone as you are the only objective source for morality which says... endless talking point dribble...

However you at least revealed that you don't like people getting into your head. In that you are correct, Jesus is a person who desires you to inside your head and help you. So I take this to mean that somewhere along the line of your life hate came into your life as a guiding factor of your personal morality because you feel you are being criticized and judged.

So you hate to be criticized and judged wrongly as anyone would but how are you not being that critical and judgmental towards others here on this forum?
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Re: Atheists: Does anything attract you to Christianity?

#45

Post by BGoodForGoodSake » Sat Dec 26, 2015 2:44 pm

I think what Jesus teaches is very appealing. Discarding the self, and seeing the bigger picture, to help make the decisions in ones life is something I naturally strive for. This takes great sacrifice.

But often, people don't relate. They will label you cold in many instances, and a push over in others. Everyone has a horizon or boundary to their decision making process.

For the hungry man, the boundary is very small, it will take a great will to do what is right when one is starved.
It is not length of life, but depth of life. -- Ralph Waldo Emerson

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