There is a god

Discussion in 'Archive: The Senate Floor' started by EnforcerSG, Mar 18, 2004.

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  1. Shroom Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Apr 3, 2004
    star 2
    Thank you for the response to my earlier question on the Flood.

    Following on from that, I am still struggling with how it can be said that God was sorry at what he saw happen, and repented that he had ever made the world.

    Assuming that God is omnipotent, and exists 'outside' of time, then even if free will is real God knew the entire future of the world at the moment that he created it. He therefore knew that world v.1 was going to end up almost entirely corrupt, and that he would end up all but destroying it. Why did he allow these people to exist in the first place, knowing as he did that he would end up destroying them? I can only assume that it was to hold them up as an example to future generations of what God was capable of doing to people who were evil - a rather terrible threat to echo throughout the rest of history.

    If this is the case it can hardly be correct to say that God was sorry, or that he repented, or even that he felt anger. Surely these emotional responses are based upon an element of surprise that things have taken the course they have, accompanied by a strong desire that things could have turned out differently?

    If you are aware before you create Mankind exactly what it is going to do, how can you be said to regret it when the inevitable happens? The closest analogy I can think of is that it is rather like me deliberately dropping an egg on my kitchen floor and then regretting that I have to go to the cupboard for a bucket and my Vileda Supermop. With an infinite number of options available to you, if you choose to embark on a particular course of action (dropping and egg; creating Mankind) knowing the consequences (you end up with sticky lino; that at a given point you are going to obliterate all but one family) I do not see how these emotional responses of regret or anger can have any real meaning.

    At best it seeems you can say that God created Mankind knowing that he would kill almost the entire population in order to serve as a lesson to future generations that people must obey God. In other words he sacrificed v.1 for the sake of v.2.

    I appreciate that this is a touchy subject, and I hope this doesn't come across as if I am trying to be deliberately controversial or agumentative. If anyone would like to point out any flaws in my interpretation I'm all ears.
  2. darthOB1 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 22, 2000
    star 5
    At best it seeems you can say that God created Mankind knowing that he would kill almost the entire population in order to serve as a lesson to future generations that people must obey God. In other words he sacrificed v.1 for the sake of v.2

    Not true.

    The Deluge did not come suddenly without warning. Years of time were spent building the ark, time that Noah the ?preacher of righteousness? also used in warning that wicked generation.

    If God had intended on destroying the whole world (of mankind) except for Noah and his family he would not have given such an early advanced warning of what was to come.

    The problem is nobody really took Noah seriously. People had every opportunity to join him and his family, but they did not. Free choice of inaction is what killed them not that God destined them to die as a lesson.

    God does not desire any to be destroyed but desires all to attain to repentance.
    2 Peter 3:9

    It is just as true then as it is now!
  3. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    I have a potentiall arbitrary question about God (assuming we're talking about the most talked about versions of God):

    So, it is taught that God created humankind. It is also taught that Humankind (as a generic whole) has consistently gone against God, its creator, time and again; so much so, in fact, that God has found the need to punish (the Great Flood) or restrict (Adam/Eve's mortality) or condemn (any sinner) them throughout the earth's history.

    Are we then saying that God has--in creating humakind--made something that he can not control?

    Can you also name something else in the natural world that is perceived as outside God's control? Or are we "it"?

    If we have "free will" to do as we will, why are we punished, restricted, or condemned for utilizing God's gift of "free will"? We are given sight and we use it. we are given knowledge and we use it. Can you name another human attribute that we are given naturally by the creator that we are inhibited from using?

  4. The_Fireman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2001
    star 4
    Well, the will isn't free, first of all. It is in submission to our genes and environment.

    Secondly, God CAN control us. In fact, everything we do is part of His plan. However, God has given us the freedom to choose to follow His influence, or to give into another.

    So God's plan includes our freedom, and choices, even when they are against God's commands and desires. If God is the only source of life, then disobeying His will will automatically bring death. Your question might as well be, "Why did God make it so that whenever you stand behind something the sun is shining on, you're in a shadow?" God is life, sin is the opposite of God's will, and so sinning brings death.
  5. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    Well, the will isn't free, first of all. It is in submission to our genes and environment.

    Then you deny free will, as in the ability to make a choice regardless of preordainment? You contradict yourself here in a second...

    Secondly, God CAN control us. In fact, everything we do is part of His plan. (here is you contradiction) However, God has given us the freedom to choose to follow His influence, or to give into another.

    So if his plan was to make humanity mortal, why did he first give Immortality to Adam and Eve? If God planned for us to sin, why did he create and send his son to kill so that our sins would be forgiven, knowing that we would continue to sin? My question is: to what purpose?

    Behind everything in nature there is a logical flow, or causality if you will.

    Yet God's motives operate outside everything he is said to have created. Why?

    So God's plan includes our freedom, and choices, even when they are against God's commands and desires. If God is the only source of life, then disobeying His will will automatically bring death.[/i]

    This, however, is not true. If God created Life, and without life there is death, then God created death as well. He can't have created one without the other. So death is just as much a part of God as is life. God created rocks, yet they are without life... ie, they are dead. People who have lived following God still die, not just those who forsake God. In fact, ever hear the phrase "only the good die young"?

    Your question might as well be, "Why did God make it so that whenever you stand behind something the sun is shining on, you're in a shadow?"

    I would not ask this, though, because the logical causality of nature tells me why that my shadow is made by the light eminating from the star in the sky. Why is the star shining? Because the elements that make up the star are interacting in such a way as to give off a reaction (light), which then travels across the void of space to Earth, interacting with the planet's atmosphere, and ultimately causing my shadow.

    Nature has causality. "God's Laws" do not, and yet God created everything in nature. This is inconsistent for a creator, I would think.

    God is life, sin is the opposite of God's will, and so sinning brings death.

    That is to say that life = God, therefor death (absence of life) = absence of God?

    How can that be so when death is inevitable to all living things created--as you say--by God? are you saying that in the end everything turns from its creator (plant and animal)?


  6. The_Fireman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2001
    star 4
    Then you deny free will, as in the ability to make a choice regardless of preordainment? You contradict yourself here in a second...

    No, I do believe we have the freedom to choose. It's just that the choices we make were made in the beginning. Time was complete from God's perspective from the very beginning. Therefore, we have been predestined to make the choices we eventually make. We still are the ones choosing, it's just that we wouldn't have chosen any other way. And it all fits in with God's sovereign plan for humanity.

    So if his plan was to make humanity mortal, why did he first give Immortality to Adam and Eve?

    I'm not sure His plan was necessarily that we would be mortal... It might be a simple change in perspective here. God's plan included the mortality of mankind, yet He desired on some level for Adam and Eve to be blameless, and therefore, immortal. I'm not sure if you followed my posts in the Atheism thread, but basically, the way I see it is that His "wish", or His "desire" may not always be immediately part of His overall plan. Make sense? In the end, His desire and plan will align perfectly, when humanity will finally be in perfect union with God, and sin is done away with forever.

    I suppose you could say it's like a book that God has written; we make up the story, but it was written before we got here. Our choices, that is, the things we do, we do of our own will. But it was recorded beforehand.

    If God planned for us to sin, why did he create and send his son to kill so that our sins would be forgiven, knowing that we would continue to sin? My question is: to what purpose?

    Simple: the death of the Messiah paved the way back to fellowship with God (and when I say fellowship, I mean a heck of a lot more than the simple ability to chit-chat with the Creator; I speak of a holy union, a most intimate relationship with YHWH). Although we continue to sin in the flesh, we are being perfected on an entirely different level, and this "sanctification" will be complete when time ends, at which point, God's kingdom will be complete. You see, Israel was God's people for a long time, due to the covenent between God and Abraham; this same covenent is potentially extended to all of humanity. With the coming of the Messiah, it was commanded directly by God to actively seek out people from all other nations and tribes to become part of God's kingdom. So now there is Israel, and there is "spiritual Israel". Both are God's kingdom, and will eventually be the only group of humanity in existence. Acceptance of the Messiah's sacrifice in through faith is the initiation into the kingdom.

    Behind everything in nature there is a logical flow, or causality if you will.

    Yet God's motives operate outside everything he is said to have created. Why?


    I'm not sure I see your meaning here... God's plan is twofold: 1. to bring all glory to His name, through our fellowship with Him, and 2. to bring us to His level, to bless us perfectly, without all the death that sin brought into the world.

    This, however, is not true. If God created Life, and without life there is death, then God created death as well.

    In a sense it is true. God created life. Death, as you pointed out, is merely the abscence of it. You could just as easily say God created evil, yet this isn't the case. God, by His nature, is good. Evil is the abscence of good. So God merely made the possibility for death, as well as the possibility for evil. These things were initiated by God's creatures, NOT by God.

    He can't have created one without the other. So death is just as much a part of God as is life. God created rocks, yet they are without life... ie, they are dead.

    I disagree. For something to be dead it must have been alive. Death is the abscence of a life that was once there.

    People who have lived following God still die, not just those who forsake God. In fact, ever hear the phrase "only the good die young"?

    True. The Bible says, "The soul who sins shall die." It only takes one,
  7. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    No, I do believe we have the freedom to choose. It's just that the choices we make were made in the beginning. Time was complete from God's perspective from the very beginning. Therefore, we have been predestined to make the choices we eventually make. We still are the ones choosing, it's just that we wouldn't have chosen any other way. And it all fits in with God's sovereign plan for humanity.

    If we have a choice, but it's already chosen (preordained), why give us the choice? Or is what your saying just a philosophical way of really saying we have no choice because whatever choice there may have been was made long before we showed up? Are we given the "perception" of choice merely to appease ourselves? Everything else in nature and the universe appears to happen for some reason or another. It at least has hypothetical and theoretical causes and effects, if not overtly viewable. Why does this aspect of the universe (God) not?

    I'm not sure His plan was necessarily that we would be mortal... It might be a simple change in perspective here. God's plan included the mortality of mankind, yet He desired on some level for Adam and Eve to be blameless, and therefore, immortal. I'm not sure if you followed my posts in the Atheism thread, but basically, the way I see it is that His "wish", or His "desire" may not always be immediately part of His overall plan. Make sense? In the end, His desire and plan will align perfectly, when humanity will finally be in perfect union with God, and sin is done away with forever.

    I suppose you could say it's like a book that God has written; we make up the story, but it was written before we got here. Our choices, that is, the things we do, we do of our own will. But it was recorded beforehand.


    Actually, no, I don't think this makes sense at all. So, God knows/knew everything we would do/choose, yet he is optmistic that we will choose differently? But he knows in advance that if we choose differently we will have chosen differently from what he first expected, which he expected we would choose.

    Um... ????????

    If God is omniscient and omnipresent (and over course ominpotent), then he would know what we would choose in the beginning, whether we choose what he wants us to choose or we choose what we have chosen. He would already know that, so why make consequences for that. It seems counterproductive in the cosmic sense. Why bother with the "save yourself or be damned" speech if he knows already what we will choose?

    Simple: the death of the Messiah paved the way back to fellowship with God (and when I say fellowship, I mean a heck of a lot more than the simple ability to chit-chat with the Creator; I speak of a holy union, a most intimate relationship with YHWH). Although we continue to sin in the flesh, we are being perfected on an entirely different level, and this "sanctification" will be complete when time ends, at which point, God's kingdom will be complete. You see, Israel was God's people for a long time, due to the covenent between God and Abraham; this same covenent is potentially extended to all of humanity. With the coming of the Messiah, it was commanded directly by God to actively seek out people from all other nations and tribes to become part of God's kingdom. So now there is Israel, and there is "spiritual Israel". Both are God's kingdom, and will eventually be the only group of humanity in existence. Acceptance of the Messiah's sacrifice in through faith is the initiation into the kingdom.

    As being from the creator, shouldn't we all be in union with God by default? Why are some people "god's people", while others are excluded? If all humans are created by God (ultimately) then why must these humans be sought out so as to be joined into "God's Kingdom"? If humans exist, are they not automatically part of "God's Kingdom"?

    And if this fellowship is mandatory in order to be a part of the "Kingdom", why is this fellowship with God not inherent in u
  8. The_Fireman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2001
    star 4
    If we have a choice, but it's already chosen (preordained), why give us the choice? Or is what your saying just a philosophical way of really saying we have no choice because whatever choice there may have been was made long before we showed up? Are we given the "perception" of choice merely to appease ourselves? Everything else in nature and the universe appears to happen for some reason or another. It at least has hypothetical and theoretical causes and effects, if not overtly viewable. Why does this aspect of the universe (God) not?

    What I'm saying is, we are the ones choosing. But we chose from the foundation of the world. We have been predestined, by God's foreknowledge, to our own choices. I guess it's somewhat like the conversation between Neo and the Oracle in The Matrix: Reloaded: You've already made the choices you will make in the future. You just have to figure out why you chose that way (ok, so you don't, but you get the point). Look at it like this (putting aside, for a moment, some of the more predominant quantum physics theories):

    Time is a line. When God made the beginning of the line, the end was already in His sight, along with everything in between. Our choices and actions make up the points on that line. Chosen by us, performed by us. BUT they were already prdetermined before we got there.

    I'm not sure His plan was necessarily that we would be mortal... It might be a simple change in perspective here. God's plan included the mortality of mankind, yet He desired on some level for Adam and Eve to be blameless, and therefore, immortal. I'm not sure if you followed my posts in the Atheism thread, but basically, the way I see it is that His "wish", or His "desire" may not always be immediately part of His overall plan. Make sense? In the end, His desire and plan will align perfectly, when humanity will finally be in perfect union with God, and sin is done away with forever.

    I suppose you could say it's like a book that God has written; we make up the story, but it was written before we got here. Our choices, that is, the things we do, we do of our own will. But it was recorded beforehand.


    Actually, no, I don't think this makes sense at all. So, God knows/knew everything we would do/choose, yet he is optmistic that we will choose differently? But he knows in advance that if we choose differently we will have chosen differently from what he first expected, which he expected we would choose.

    Um... ????????

    If God is omniscient and omnipresent (and over course ominpotent), then he would know what we would choose in the beginning, whether we choose what he wants us to choose or we choose what we have chosen. He would already know that, so why make consequences for that. It seems counterproductive in the cosmic sense. Why bother with the "save yourself or be damned" speech if he knows already what we will choose?


    Because we do not know. This existence is for us (in addition to God's glory).

    Simple: the death of the Messiah paved the way back to fellowship with God (and when I say fellowship, I mean a heck of a lot more than the simple ability to chit-chat with the Creator; I speak of a holy union, a most intimate relationship with YHWH). Although we continue to sin in the flesh, we are being perfected on an entirely different level, and this "sanctification" will be complete when time ends, at which point, God's kingdom will be complete. You see, Israel was God's people for a long time, due to the covenent between God and Abraham; this same covenent is potentially extended to all of humanity. With the coming of the Messiah, it was commanded directly by God to actively seek out people from all other nations and tribes to become part of God's kingdom. So now there is Israel, and there is "spiritual Israel". Both are God's kingdom, and will eventually be the only group of humanity in existence. Acceptance of the Messiah's sacrifice in through faith is the initiation into the kingdom.

    As being from the creator, shouldn't we all be in union with God
  9. dizfactor Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 5
    Man wasn't flawed at first; he was in a perfect state, in God's image. Faced with the choice to remain in that state or become their own "gods", they gave into the other influence, and became at that instance morally imperfect

    but if they made an imperfect choice, they weren't really perfect to begin with. which means that God is responsible for making them imperfect and all the consequences thereof.

    to get all Platonic for a moment, if they were perfect, then they would also choose the perfect, perfectly. since they did not choose the perfect, they could not have been perfect to begin with, and so blame properly lies with the Creator.

    and in need of a Savior.

    OK, here's the issue: you claim that God is omnipotent, omniscent, and omnibenevolent, and you claim that God wants man to be forgiven. however, you also claim that man cannot be forgiven without the intercession of the Savior, dying to accept the consequences of sin. man sins, and someone has to take the consequences for that, yes?

    these two things are mutually exclusive.

    if God wants man to be forgiven, and wants to save him from the consequences of his own actions, but sin has consequences which compel Him to act in a certain way to achieve that goal, than he's not omnipotent. sin has consequences that even God cannot undo simply by willing them undone, hence His power has at least one limit.

    if he's not compelled to act in this way, but is acting with choice, then he's not omnibenevolent. people are choosing sin because He chose to make them flawed, and he's making them play a meaningless game of sin and salvation which he knows some of them will lose when he could just choose to cut to the chase, so to speak, then he's essentially a sadist and a murderer, which kind of rules out being omnibenevolent.

    so... which is it? is he omnipotent, or omnibenevolent? there's only one choice.

    (this is a variation on what philosophers call the Problem of Evil, and it's the reason why no one takes theists seriously in academic philosophy)
  10. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    In a sense it is. We have been created with a desire to have that fellowship with the Creator. When we hear the gospel message, in some it rings true to the point of acceptance. In others, other influences are so strong in their lives that they reject the message, but still they yearn for that fellowship.

    Strange that I lack that yearning for fellowship with God, especially if it is pre-constructed into my being. Stranger still because I grew up with many religious influences, yet the path I take now is the truth to me, though it is not the path of your God.

    He doesn't "need" it per se. He desires it, according to His sovereign will. We were created in His image, with a desire to love and be loved. I assume it is the same with Him. He wants our love and respect, not forced, but chosen (albeit foreknown).

    This seemingly circular logic confuses me. We have a choice, but we don't, so we choose what we were supposed to choose, which means we don't really have a choice, even though we have a choice?

    Technically, these are not things. They are more along the lines of ideas. God created the possibility for these things, and through that, they were brought into realization by Satan and sin.

    Goodness, too, is an idea--and a relative one at that, as is evil. Yet you say he created "good" specifically. how does one create good without knowing (and hence creating) evil?

    Oh and as an aside, why do we still say God is "He"?

    It is neither living nor dead. It just exists.

    Is existence mutually exclusive to life? I exist (I think), and I live. The stone on my desk exists, and yet it is not alive. So what other classification can you give to stone that would separate it from something living, as well as separate it from something that was living, but is now dead?

    Tissue deterioration is HOW we die. It isn't WHY we die. Plants die because, for one, we must eat them to live, and for another because they eventually will be wiped from existence anyway, a;ong with everything else. The cycle of life is in place to keep things going and running smoothly until the end, in which case the last generation of life is destroyed along with the universe.

    So... everything in the universe, including stars and galaxies, etc etc, die because we sinned?

    I believe that were you (or anyone) to deliver a reasoning behind any of this that correlates with how the rest of the natural universe operates, you would have made a strong case for God.

    However, as it's been explained to me for the past 30+ years (as above), it just doesn't make sense.

    This is what makes sense to me (so as to give you an idea from where I'm coming):

    Let's look at but one level: Humanity. Humans are born, and humans die. When they die, the physical bodies are returned to the earth, which uses them to re-enrich the soil, which is used to grow plants, which is used to provide life-giving materials such as oxygen and food, which helps to "grow" new generations of humans (this works for all animals, by the way). so one can say (pardon the borrowing from Disney) that we are within a life circle.

    This cyclical system is seen at the subatomic level, the animal level, the planetary level, the star level, and the galactic level--we assume so far that we see this on the universal level, as well.

    Everything is cyclical. Something is born, something dies, death contributes to the foundation of life, so that life returns, only to die and repeat the cycle.

    The creator of all this is surely a powerful, mighty, influence, whatever/whoever it is. So, given that, why would humans be created only to be doomed to fail because of their sins?

    And what is sin, for that matter?

    I get the impression that there is much more to us than damnation for using God's name in vain.

    EDIT:
    to get all Platonic for a moment, if they were perfect, then they would also ch
  11. dizfactor Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 5
    Exactly what I've been trying to say but have not been able! Thanks!

    that's what i'm here for.

    seriously, Plato basically demolished the basis of Christian theology centuries before Christianity even got off the ground, by observing that perfection and free will are mutually incompatible. if something is perfect, by virtue of being perfect, it must always choose the perfect, and hence has no choice at all. it's impossible to create something that's perfect and also has free will, as the Christians assert.

    now, the Gnostic Christians generally asserted that there is a perfect divine being. however, they realized that a perfect being could not create imperfect man or his imperfect world, and so basically attributed Creation to Plato's Demiurge. they considered the God of the Old Testament to be the Demiurge, who created the fallen world and imperfect man, and tried to ensnare them into worshipping him. Jesus, to the Gnostics, was a messenger sent by the perfect divine being specifically to liberate man from the Old Testament god who created man in his imperfect image, and to liberate the perfect souls trapped in the imperfect world by the OT god, who is essentially evil in Gnostic theology.

    many if not most scholars agree that Gnosticism predated what we now consider the dominant form of Christianity, and that modern Christianity descends from a mutant offshoot of Gnosticism. modern Christianity flourished solely because it didn't reject the material world as totally as the Gnostics did, which made it more attractive both to the authorities and to people who couldn't handle the full-bore asceticism demanded by the Gnostics. which makes sense, because Gnostic theology at least makes sense in its own terms, and modern Christianity makes more sense as a less sensical but lower-stress offshoot of the parent religion.
  12. The_Fireman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2001
    star 4
    but if they made an imperfect choice, they weren't really perfect to begin with. which means that God is responsible for making them imperfect and all the consequences thereof.

    to get all Platonic for a moment, if they were perfect, then they would also choose the perfect, perfectly. since they did not choose the perfect, they could not have been perfect to begin with, and so blame properly lies with the Creator.


    I think the problem here is how we're defining perfection. When I speak of perfection regarding mankind, I mean in regards to morals. It was not inherently "wrong" to eat that fruit, because the fruit itself was nothing more than, well, fruit. The problem was that it was against God's command. The choice was not imperfect; the result of their decision, however, was imperfection. Before they sinned they were without blame; after they ate the fruit, they were guilty.

    OK, here's the issue: you claim that God is omnipotent, omniscent, and omnibenevolent, and you claim that God wants man to be forgiven. however, you also claim that man cannot be forgiven without the intercession of the Savior, dying to accept the consequences of sin. man sins, and someone has to take the consequences for that, yes?

    these two things are mutually exclusive.

    if God wants man to be forgiven, and wants to save him from the consequences of his own actions, but sin has consequences which compel Him to act in a certain way to achieve that goal, than he's not omnipotent. sin has consequences that even God cannot undo simply by willing them undone, hence His power has at least one limit.

    if he's not compelled to act in this way, but is acting with choice, then he's not omnibenevolent. people are choosing sin because He chose to make them flawed, and he's making them play a meaningless game of sin and salvation which he knows some of them will lose when he could just choose to cut to the chase, so to speak, then he's essentially a sadist and a murderer, which kind of rules out being omnibenevolent.

    so... which is it? is he omnipotent, or omnibenevolent? there's only one choice.

    (this is a variation on what philosophers call the Problem of Evil, and it's the reason why no one takes theists seriously in academic philosophy)


    The Bible does NOT say He's omnibenevolent. So there it is. He loves us all, in some form or fashion, but He's made things to happen in such a way that people WILL die in their sins, whereas some will be saved, according to His mercy.

    Strange that I lack that yearning for fellowship with God, especially if it is pre-constructed into my being. Stranger still because I grew up with many religious influences, yet the path I take now is the truth to me, though it is not the path of your God.

    You misunderstand me: I don't mean we all yearn to be with the Biblical God. I mean that we all yearn for closeness to the Creator, to the higher power, even IF that yearning only comes in the form of desiring to believe He exists, but not seemingly having a reason to believe such.

    This seemingly circular logic confuses me. We have a choice, but we don't, so we choose what we were supposed to choose, which means we don't really have a choice, even though we have a choice?

    We choose what we were always going to choose from before time began. We're still making the choice.

    Goodness, too, is an idea--and a relative one at that, as is evil. Yet you say he created "good" specifically. how does one create good without knowing (and hence creating) evil?

    He didn't create goodness. He IS goodness. Goodness is the default.

    Oh and as an aside, why do we still say God is "He"?

    Because Jesus referred to Him as Father. God, although neither male nor female, is defined by the Son, who is male. The image of the Father is in the Son. Not that Jesus is an exact physical replica of Him, but rather that they are, to be frank, one and the same. They both equal God.

    Is existence mutually exclusive to life? I exist (I think), and I live. The stone on my desk ex
  13. dizfactor Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 12, 2002
    star 5
    I think the problem here is how we're defining perfection. When I speak of perfection regarding mankind, I mean in regards to morals. It was not inherently "wrong" to eat that fruit, because the fruit itself was nothing more than, well, fruit. The problem was that it was against God's command.

    sorry, but the distinction you're groping for isn't going to hold water. you yourself (in accordance with Christian teachings) define sin and imperfection as separation from and rebellion against God. something is only inherently "wrong" insofar as it is against God's commands. therefore, the converse is also true: anything that is against God's commands is inherently wrong, by definition of what it means to be inherently wrong. Adam and Eve made an imperfect choice, which means that they were not created perfectly.

    The choice was not imperfect; the result of their decision, however, was imperfection.

    this is not a valid distinction, either. any choice which leads to imperfection is by definition an imperfect choice.

    The Bible does NOT say He's omnibenevolent. So there it is. He loves us all, in some form or fashion, but He's made things to happen in such a way that people WILL die in their sins, whereas some will be saved, according to His mercy.

    first of all, how in the world are you trying to drive a wedge between the concepts of all-encompassing love and omnibenevolence? any definition of love must be rooted in a desire for the well-being of the loved. either God loves us all equally and is omnibenevolent, or he does not love us all equally and is not omnibenevolent.

    which is it? you must choose.

    you have been forced into a position where you are making spurious distinctions in an attempt to split hairs that cannot be split. in the process you have thoroughly exposed the fallacies of Christian theology and your position is compromised beyond repair. it is inherently self-contradictory.

    nice try, though.
  14. Cheveyo Force Ghost

    Member Since:
    Oct 29, 2001
    star 5
    Why does it even matter? To me, it is merely there.

    [face_laugh] Well done, and point taken. <bows> arigato gozaimasu sensei. You bring back to the basics.

    Are you sure you do not follow the Tao? ;)


    [face_peace]

  15. darthOB1 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 22, 2000
    star 5
    Argh no wonder hes confused. :rolleyes:
  16. The_Fireman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2001
    star 4
    sorry, but the distinction you're groping for isn't going to hold water. you yourself (in accordance with Christian teachings) define sin and imperfection as separation from and rebellion against God. something is only inherently "wrong" insofar as it is against God's commands. therefore, the converse is also true: anything that is against God's commands is inherently wrong, by definition of what it means to be inherently wrong. Adam and Eve made an imperfect choice, which means that they were not created perfectly.

    The choice was not imperfect; the result of their decision, however, was imperfection.

    this is not a valid distinction, either. any choice which leads to imperfection is by definition an imperfect choice.


    Very well. I will concede the point. I'm tired of playing word games. My point, and this is the final time, is that before Adam and Eve at the fruit, they were perfectly blameless in God's eyes. It was only after they ate it that they became "imperfect" in His eyes. Before they did it they had not committed the crime except in the foreknowledge of God; after they did it they were considered morally imperfect. They had the spot of sin in their lives.

    The Bible does NOT say He's omnibenevolent. So there it is. He loves us all, in some form or fashion, but He's made things to happen in such a way that people WILL die in their sins, whereas some will be saved, according to His mercy.

    first of all, how in the world are you trying to drive a wedge between the concepts of all-encompassing love and omnibenevolence? any definition of love must be rooted in a desire for the well-being of the loved. either God loves us all equally and is omnibenevolent, or he does not love us all equally and is not omnibenevolent.

    which is it? you must choose.


    Fine. ;) He does not love us all equally, nor in the same manner. If that means He is not omnibenevolent, then He is not omnibenevolent. He does, as the Bible teaches, love us all, to an extent. But His love is NOT as definable as our love. He is God, we are human.

    you have been forced into a position where you are making spurious distinctions in an attempt to split hairs that cannot be split. in the process you have thoroughly exposed the fallacies of Christian theology and your position is compromised beyond repair. it is inherently self-contradictory.

    nice try, though.


    I am not aware of any fallacies; on the contrary, it appears that it is you who are grasping at straws, attempting to back me into a corner to expose the ludicrousy of my faith, and seeing that you are failing, you are playing word games, and bringing up issues that are not even important as far as the Bible's message goes. God loves everyone. Sorry you can't see how that can be so given what the Bible teaches. Adam and Eve were perfect in regards to God's eternal Law before they ate from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Sorry you cannot see how it can be that way.

    Cheveyo: [face_laugh] Well done, and point taken. <bows> arigato gozaimasu sensei. You bring back to the basics.

    Are you sure you do not follow the Tao? ;)


    [face_peace]


    :p Well, I AM a follower of "the Way", as it was called in the early stages of the Church. ;) Take that for what you will...
  17. MasterZap Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2002
    star 4
    I dunno. Why does it even matter? To me, it is merely there. That's just how I see it.


    Why can't a law of physics be "merely there", or the entire universe be "merely there". Why throw in a God in the mix?

    This always baffled me.

    It is also amusing to see all this word-wrangling about free will vs. predeterminism. They are mutually exclusive. However, the illusion of free will and predeterminism is not.

    Now, if God is not omnibenevolent, why do a good 98% of Christians claim this?

    Also, since God created the universe a certain way, this "way" dictated everything that would happen (since every event on the timline is defined by the previous event etc). Meaning, that God really set in stone everything from day 1 to the end of time, at the moment of creation.

    Some argue our will is still "free" but since its predetermined, that is a meaningless illusion, and it is really not. The "choices" are completely mapped out. Every "sin" is indirectly orchestrated by God.

    Surely, had God been perfect, he would have created a universe which would spawn a mankind which was less sin-y? :)

    Honestly, though, I'm just madly giggling at this entire thread of discussion. You guys actually honestly believe this stuff? Man.

    /Z
  18. darthOB1 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 22, 2000
    star 5
    Predestination is an unscriptural joke!

    I'll post this from what I said in the athesist thread.


    SO MANY imaginary problems would be avoided if the often-misunderstood term predestination were not used at all.

    You may wonder why, if you have used the word ?predestination? or heard it used.

    According to the recent French Catholic encyclopedia Theo, we do well not to use the word ?predestination.? Another book states: ?Today, predestination is no longer at the heart of theological debates, even for most Protestants, it seems.?

    Nevertheless, the question of predestination has disturbed many people throughout history.

    It was at the heart of the controversy that brought about the Reformation, and even within the Catholic Church, it was a subject of heated discussion for centuries. Although less debated today, it still remains a problem.

    Who would not want to know whether his destiny was fixed in advance?

    What does the word ?predestination? mean in the churches? The Dictionnaire de theologie catholique considers it to be ?the divine intention to bring certain ones, who are designated by name, to everlasting life.?

    It is generally thought that the chosen ones, ?designated by name,? are the ones referred to by the apostle Paul in his letter to the Romans, in the following terms: ?God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose. For those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son . . . And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he justified he also glorified.??Romans 8:28-30, Revised Standard Version.

    Even before their birth, some people were supposedly chosen by God with a view to sharing Christ?s glory in the heavens. This leads to the long-debated question: Does God arbitrarily choose whom he wants to save, or do men have free will and a part to play in obtaining and retaining God?s favor?


    Although other Church Fathers had previously written about predestination, Augustine (354-430 C.E.) is generally considered to have laid the foundations of the doctrine for both Catholic and Protestant churches.

    According to Augustine, the righteous have from eternity been predestined by God to receive eternal blessings. On the other hand, the unrighteous, although not predestined by God in the strict sense of the word, are to receive the merited punishment for their sins, condemnation. Augustine?s explanation left little place for free will, thus opening the way for many a controversy.

    The debate regarding predestination and free will surfaced regularly during the Middle Ages, and it came to a head during the Reformation. Luther saw individual predestination as a free choice on God?s part, without His foreseeing the future merits or good works of the chosen ones. Calvin came to a more radical conclusion with his concept of twofold predestination: Some are predestined to eternal salvation, and others to eternal condemnation. However, Calvin too considered God?s choice to be arbitrary, even incomprehensible.

    The issue of predestination and the closely related question of ?grace?,a word used by the churches to designate the act by which God saves and declares men righteous?took on such proportions that in 1611 the Catholic Holy See forbade anything to be published on the subject without its consent.

    Within the Catholic Church, Augustine?s teachings received strong support from the French Jansenists of the 17th and 18th centuries. They advocated a very austere and elite form of Christianity and even had followers among the aristocracy. Yet, the controversy over the matter did not calm down. King Louis XIV ordered the destruction of the abbey of Port-Royal, the cradle of Jansenist thought.

    Within the Protestant Reformed churches, the discussion was far from closed. Along with others, the Remonstrants, who followed Jacobus Arminius, believed that man has a role to play in his own salvation. The Protestant Synod of Dordrecht (1618-19) tempo
  19. MasterZap Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Aug 11, 2002
    star 4
    If Predestination is a joke, how can then God live "outside time" and see "all of eternity" as one?

    Does he "see all of eternity" not as a single event, but as an infinite tree of branching possibilities? That I could understand.

    But anything but an "infinite tree of branching possibilities" MEANS predestination to a being "outside time".

    It's funny, though, OB1, that now you are molding God to fit science (just as you said you aren't doing) because you have decided

    - "Omnibenevolence" doesn't apply (a good many Christians don't agree with you)
    - "Predestination" doesn't apply (a good many Christians don't agree with you)

    Any other capacity you care to shave off God while you're at it? Omnipotence? Being useful? Making sense? :D


    To me the explanation is simple.

    What is logic?

    Logic is eternal, timeless, lives outside the universe, knows everything you will ever possibly do, yet leaves your will completely free. "Logic" is omnipotent, as "benevolent" (or not) as a dumb law of nature can be, it's omnipresent... heck... Logic itself has all the attributes of "God", every single one, yet none of the contradictions.

    Oh and it's deaf/dumb/blind and non-sentient. I know you guys don't like that.

    I never understood why the "ultimate cause" must be sentient. That's just silly. Sentience is extremely complex. The ultimate cause must be, by definition, infinitely simple. It cannot be a being, it cannot be sentient. Thats dumb.

    The simplest thing that exists is no-thing. The ultimate cause must ultimately be nothing. This is obvious and self-evident to anyone stretching Logic - the one true god - to it's fullest.

    Where did everything come from? Nowhere, naturally. There is no other place for every-thing to come from.

    How this inescapable undisputable bit of Logic escapes theists, is remarkable. They claim "nothing can come from nothing". Of course it can. The first thing must by necessity come from nothing. It's required.

    /Z
  20. darthOB1 Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Mar 22, 2000
    star 5
    It's funny, though, OB1, that now you are molding God to fit science (just as you said you aren't doing) because you have decided

    - "Omnibenevolence" doesn't apply (a good many Christians don't agree with you)
    - "Predestination" doesn't apply (a good many Christians don't agree with you)


    Just what exactly do you mean by omnibenevolence?
    Love of everybody?

    And as far as predestination, through my studies of Gods word I have come to the conclusion that God does not control our lives. We control our lives. We can change for the benifit of salvation, or we can change for the detrement of our salvations, but it is entirely up to us. We were not created to be robots.

    He finds no satisfation of pre-programmed robots loving him.

    You have kids, I believe they are probably at that age were they will start to explore their independence.

    Do you let them do what ever they want?


    If they want to play with matches inside the house do you let them? If you catch them and tell them not to because they will get hurt or burn the house down and they do anyway, to you just let it go, or do you discipline them?

    If you discipline them do they then in return, say "I hate you I never want to see you or talk to you or have anything to do with you ?"

    How gratifying would it be instead if they say "I'm sorry, I'll never do it again dad, I love you!"


    [face_love] :_| [face_laugh]

    Anyways, I have not convieniently molded God to fit science, since I have never believed in predetermination.

    Not sure why you claim I do!

  21. EnforcerSG Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2001
    star 4
    This is a question I have asked several times and I can't remember if someone answered it and I missed it or if no one answered it, but is blind faith in God enough? I mean yeah it is nice to have personal proof and all, but if we just blindly believed in God, would that be enough for His love?

    And darthOB1, sorry for the excuses, but I have strep throat and have been in bed a lot these few days. Sorry to keep dragging my reply out.
  22. The_Fireman Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Jul 8, 2001
    star 4
    I can answer that, Enforcer.

    It depends on what your placing that faith in. In the Bible, it is never the existence of God that is called into question. Everytime you see God desiring our faith, it is always faith in His character, and in His abilities. Blind faith in that is what saves. That is placing your faith in Jesus, and that is the avenue of salvation.

    Faith in His existence is not enough. Satan believes. Is he going to heaven?

    Now, on that note, proof is not really an issue here, since we are not dealing with His existence. He proved time and again to the people in the Bible that He existed. What was required after that was faith in His ways. When He told them to do something, He expected them to do it, in faith, believing that He would pull through for them.
  23. EnforcerSG Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2001
    star 4
    The Fireman

    Um, well, the reason I made this thread was to deal with the evidences and possible proofs for any god, specific or otherwise. To me, His/her/its/their existence is in question. If you are following the 'atheist debate' thread you can see how final 'we are here' is as evidence. I need more to even think that there may be a god, let alone God.

    If you put faith in the Bible, then most arguments become a mute point. Is there a god, yes HE does exist. Is He good, yep. Do we have morality, heck yeah. Is there an answer to <insert social issue here>, yep! If we assume that a specific religion is true, then anything confirming that that religion is true is circular logic (I do understand that there are still things to debate as you and darthOB1 have been, but in many debates, if religion is assumed to be true, it is true and that is it).

    Their character is a whole another story. The problem is, as you worded it, it seems that there is more faith in the bible and its descriptions than what may be known of God. I feel that if one is religious (and their religion supports it), they should put faith in their god than anything else, including themselves or records. So anything written down and believed is faith in that something and not in god. Likewise anything you figure out and makes sense takes a back seat to god.

    Also with a God so far above us, with different time, feelings, thoughts, responsibilities, intelligence, etc, can we understand anything about Him in more specific terms than just 'He is perfect?'
  24. conron_montyn23 Jedi Knight

    Member Since:
    Jun 18, 2004
    To you last question ^

    God designed humans in his image. God has humor, love, anger, and other emotions, because he has shown them to people. King Solomon once said that God's foolishness is wiser than any man's wisdom.
    Time is another issue. I am a Messianic Jew, or a Christian Jew, so I rarely agree with catholics, but Constantine said that God does not dwell in time, nor does Satan or other spirits. I agree completely with this. I think God created time FOR man.

    Some people may ask why he doesn't make it so man cannot know how to do evil, but what pleasure would YHVH recieve if we didn't worship him on our own free will?

    How can we know God more? Easy. By following the teachings of his son Yeshua (Jesus) and dwelling with the Holy Spirit, which IS his presence. Follow his Torah (loving instructions) to be closer to him. Listen to his voice, and live your life according to his word, and you will live a life of happiness and freedom.

    After all, Elijah was taken up to heaven because God found so much favor in his sight.
  25. EnforcerSG Jedi Master

    Member Since:
    Sep 12, 2001
    star 4
    Some people may ask why he doesn't make it so man cannot know how to do evil, but what pleasure would YHVH recieve if we didn't worship him on our own free will?

    Actually a better question is why can't or won't God convince us to do the right thing. Not force us, not limit our options, just sit down with us, talk to us one on one, have a heart to heart and convince us. God would literally be saving us all and we would be in a relationship with Him, and it is still our choice to do so.

    Remember that I assume for practical purposes (not that it is completely true) that we choose everything we do for some reason (that reason coming down to something we want). If we choose because we want to be happy or we choose because we are hungry in a metaphysical sense, it is still a choice for a reason. I wonder if it is possible for us to do anything without a reason and if so, is that free will... but that is another debate.
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