Which God is “clearly seen” in creation?

August 3, 2007 at 12:43 am 52 comments

Grand CanyonOn my previous blog entry, Dan made the following comment in an attempt to save us:

A common claim made by atheists/skeptics is that they do not have enough proof of God to actually believe, and that one doesn’t need absolute knowledge to deny the existence of a deity. Well, to be right, you do. You are, however, content with making absolute claims without absolute knowledge.

The atheist would likely then reply: “You seem to believe 100% that God exists without absolute knowledge to substantiate your claim.”

Let’s look at the following verse, which I’m sure many of you have read several times but now overlook: “For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through what has been made, so that they [unbelievers] are without excuse.”

Essentially, this points out that proof of God is in the things he has created. Consider just how important of a statement that is. When you die, and if God (specifically, the God of the Bible) judges you, can you claim in all fairness that you didn’t believe because there was no proof of Him? Do not be fooled, you have been brought into existence and into this world for a reason. You have been shown God through the love you are able to feel, and the priveledges are able to have. You have clearly seen the universe He has made, as well as the beautiful world you have been provided so as to experience life. Consider that it was once possible for you to never exist. Do you honestly believe that all that you are, all that you are capable of, is the result of vibrating matter that somehow created itself?

For those looking for scientific proof of God, I highly recommend the following site – http://www.godandscience.org

Remember, you can still make the decision to follow Christ, either for the first time or again if you have turned away. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but all to come to repentance.

Dan, you spoke of creation being a declaration of God. Fair enough. I am often in awe of creation and sometimes find it difficult to wrap my mind around the evolutionary process. However, you then became specific and implied that God=”specifically, the God of the Bible.” Why?

Hinduism is the oldest religion. Why does God not equal the God of Hinduism? Why not Brahma (Creator), Vishnu (Sustainer), or Krishna (Love, destruction of evil)? What about Zeus, Apollo, Aphrodite, or Hermes? Why isn’t God one of the Greek Gods?

How about Allah? or Jah (he’s got cool music)? Why are they not the real God?

In addition, even if you were correct that God=God of the Bible, which God of the Bible are you referring to?

In Genesis 1:1, it says his name is Elohim. That’s a plural word. Does it mean God is a plurality? Is the “God of the Bible” you referred to Elohim since he is referred to as Elohim over 2,500 times in the Old Testament? Well, he’s also referred to as El (about 250 times), El-Shaddai, El-Elyon, and others. I guess it’s safe to assume we’re talking about the same God. Correct?

What is Elohim like? He seems quite personable. He walked with Adam and Eve in the cool of the day. He chatted with Cain and Abel and came looking for Abel after he was killed by Cain. Enoch walked with him for 300 years. He gave Noah detailed instructions on building an Ark that would house millions of species :) . He came into Abraham’s tent for a visit and had a meal with him. He negotiated with Abraham before wiping out Sodom and Gomorrah with fire and brimstone. He wrestled with Abraham’s grandson all night. (Isn’t it impressive for a mere man to wrestle God for an entire night?) Overall, Elohim sounds like a very personal God.

However, the “God of the Bible” then goes through a radical transformation. He changes from this personal God to burning bushes, thunder and lightning from Mt. Sinai, you can’t see his face and live, and you can’t even touch the mountain where he is and live. Are we talking about the same God who was just hanging out with Abraham and company? Why did he all of a sudden become this impersonal, untouchable God?

Oh, and now he’s changed his name to Yahweh? Or Jehovah? Or a bunch of Jehovah-somethings? Are we still talking about Elohim? It sure doesn’t sound like it.

Also, a good summary of Yahweh’s character can be found in Richard Dawkins’ description of him:

Jealous and proud of it; a petty, unjust, unforgiving control-freak; a vindictive, bloodthirsty ethnic cleanser; a misogynistic, homophobic, racist, infanticidal, genocidal, filicidal, pestilential, megalomaniacal, sadomasochistic, capriciously malevolent bully.”

Jesus and GodNow, let’s look at the New Testament. God is now a loving father in heaven who so loves the world. He values me more than sparrows. He has numbered every hair on my head. He is compassionate, merciful and kind. He’s even taken on the form of a human.

I have to admit, I like this New Testament God. I can skip over the fact he killed a couple for lying and a few other minor atrocities but overall he seems quite cool.

However, I’d appreciate a bit more clarity on why we should choose the God of the Bible and then which God of the Bible is the real God. The personal Elohim or the untouchable Yahweh or the loving, compassionate Father God as described by Jesus or even Christ, the God-man himself? After all, who wants to perish?

– The de-Convert

Entry filed under: The de-Convert. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , .

God: An imaginary friend for grown-ups? My life of proselytization

52 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Epiphanist  |  August 3, 2007 at 7:32 am

    Thank you The de-Convert, nice post. I am happy to be made out of vibrating matter and to try and know whatever potential that gives me. I am happy to know God through his creation – you, me and Dan included. I used to be happy with “the church belongs to God, but God does not belong to the church”. I might have to extend that to “the book belongs to God, but God does not belong to the book.”

  • 2. kramii  |  August 3, 2007 at 8:55 am

    The de-Convert:

    You wrote:

    Which God is “clearly seen” in creation? [...] Why not Brahma (Creator), Vishnu (Sustainer), or Krishna (Love, destruction of evil)?

    Why not, indeed?

    Observe John 1:1:

    In the Beginning Was the Word [Jesus]. All Things Were Created by Him.

    Then Colossians 1:17:

    He [Jesus] existed before everything and holds everything together

    And 1 John 3:8:

    The Son of God [Jesus] appeared for this purpose, to destroy the works of the devil.

    Now, I am not saying that Xianity and Hinduism are the same (far from it). Rather that people all over the world have looked at creation and drawn conclusions that have something in common with each other.

    We shouldn’t be surprised at this. It is the same world, after all, and we’re all people.

    There is something of value in all the major world religions: every world view has its merits.

    Personally, I perceive that God is Love, that Love requires Justice, that Love would die for me and that Love is greater than death. I have, therefore, found that enough of my views / experience are in harmony with Xianity. As a result, I have decided to make my home in Christ. I am particularly taken with Jesus Himself. I am persuaded that He really is God (in any sense that matters), and that the Bible is the best record of His life and its meaning that we have (experience tells me it is a most excellent book, but that is another story).

    As a Xian, I naturally reject the aspects of other perspectives where they contradict my faith in Jesus. Even then, it is not unusual for an apparent contradiction to be based on misunderstanding – from comparing caricatures rather than from comparing the real deal.

    As a result, I think we Xians have a great deal to learn from other world views (and yes, from the world itself).

    So, as I say, Christ is my home. But I do like to take an interest in other people’s world views. So, why not Creator, Sustainer & Destroyer? Everyone likes a holiday from time to time.

  • 3. Heather  |  August 3, 2007 at 9:12 am

    I know I’ve asked this question previously, but lately whenever I’ve seen the statement that creation is proof of God’s existence, it’s made me think about those who are much more familiar with the universe and how it works: those familiar with evolution, or physics, or astrophysics and all the other fields that deal with some sort of creation. Now, I know there are scientists who have faith in a god. But overall, it seems that a lot of scientists are in the agnostic/atheist camp. And these are the people most familiar with the operation of the universe. If the universe is in fact proof of God’s existence, wouldn’t it logically follow that scientists would be the most faithful and devout? That they would be constantly telling others about God and how creation points to a God? I know at least one physicst who did have faith at the beginning, but due to what he’s learned, he doesn’t believe in a god, and he didn’t want to lose his faith. That seems to be common reaction to entering the scientific field. It also seems that when looking at creation on a superficial level, people will say it’s proof of God. When getting beneath the surface and really getting the inner workings and really having an understanding, people stop saying that.

    Kramii, I know you’ve already tackled this question — and feel free to do so again, if you want :), but I’d be curious to see what others think.

  • 4. Rasputin  |  August 3, 2007 at 9:14 am

    You are, however, content with making absolute claims without absolute knowledge.

    The atheist would likely then reply: “You seem to believe 100% that God exists without absolute knowledge to substantiate your claim.”

    Seems to me most atheists are more likely to reply “No, I’m not making any absolute claims.”

    Theists seem to live in a world that is a lot more black and white than the one I see.

  • 5. Doris Tracey  |  August 3, 2007 at 9:38 am

    Hi The de-Convert.
    This is a very enlightening post. I believe there is one God and many manifestations of the one God. One times one times one always equels one. “Ye are Gods and suns and daughters of the most high.”

  • 6. laelaps  |  August 3, 2007 at 11:07 am

    Heather, you wrote:

    “If the universe is in fact proof of God’s existence, wouldn’t it logically follow that scientists would be the most faithful and devout? That they would be constantly telling others about God and how creation points to a God?”

    This is the premise behind “Natural Theology” (see William Paley’s book by the same name). In the late 1700’s through the 1800’s, it was considered proper for those who were studying theology to spend time studying nature, determining how the “creation” worked. Indeed, Linnaeus claimed he created classification to figure out the order of creation, and Darwin was allowed to go on the Beagle as a naturalist not only because the captain needed company (the main reason Darwin got a spot), but because it was considered proper that he go and study nature before coming back to be a clergyman in England.

    The trouble was, however, that when people started looking at nature and understanding it they didn’t see any handiwork of a creator. Previously nature was vaugely philosophical, the Ionians coming closest to modern science. The Dark Ages especially were marred by people learning about nature through church-controlled texts and compendiums of mythology/science like Pliny’s Natural History. Once Europe was out of the Dark Ages and people started to look at nature itself (instead of just read what Aristotle said about it), it was found to be inconsistent with the Genesis account of creation. While some modern Christian apologetics has focused on trying to say Genesis is meant to be read as an allegory, it seems to me that it was originally intended to be the actual history of the creation of the world and all life; if Genesis is just an allegory, wouldn’t it have been better for God to tell whomever wrote Genesis (because we’re pretty sure it wasn’t Moses) what actually happened instead of telling a story that would cause so much trouble later? As far as I’ve seen, Genesis was intended to be read as history, regardless of how untrue we know it to be today (it likely has its origins in earlier Chaldean/Babylonian myths).

    Anyway, there are some scientists who believe and some who do not, some areas of study (like physics) seem to be more given to religious feelings than others (paleontology, biology, chemistry, etc.). Overall, however, it has become apparent that the Bible does not present an accurate picture of the natural world, and that nature does not require God’s constant intervention of fine-tuning to proceed. If things were created as they were in Genesis or even by a supernatural force, it should be apparent in nature; the evidence of nature and the Bible should intertwine, but they certainly are at odds. It might be fashionable to place God in the realm of physics or the Big Bang, but this can all-too-easily turn into making God smaller and smaller, ultimately to be disproved as we learn more.

  • 7. stellasays  |  August 3, 2007 at 11:34 am

    I noticed The de-Convert listed a bunch of male deities that could be god, but if god created male and female in his own image, couldn’t (or rather shouldn’t) that deity also be a female?

    My desire to want a female deity (because I am a female) to be listed among The de-Convert’s possible gods makes me wonder if humans did not create god in their image.

    It is ironic how almost every religion on earth claims their god is the “real god.” It would be best to serve them all so as to cover all the bases, except that some religions will send you to hell for that too.

    What is one to do? :-)

  • 8. mysterybea  |  August 3, 2007 at 12:10 pm

    Regarding Heather’s comment on how the people that are most familiar with biological and evolutionary processes are the least likely to be religious. I agree to an extent. But I wanted to add my personal opinion as a scientist who has a very good understanding of biological processes and evolution. It is not only because I understand these processes that I reject the existence of god. It is because they are so beautiful and perfect all on their own that I don’t need to justify their inner workings to the power of god (any god). The natural world is in such an elegant harmony (excepting for the influence of unnatural forces) due to evolution. The world is a very dynamic place, and to believe that living things were made in their present form and survived in that same manner for (ahem) thousands of years is absolutely ludicrous. Why can’t we just accept the beauty of the natural world for what it is and not try to attribute its perfection to a creator?

    Laelaps is correct in saying that more physical scientists than biological scientists believe in a higher power, Richard Dawkins writes about that in “The God Delusion”. However, the numbers are low in both cases. I think that in addition to understanding and appreciating the workings of the natural world, the critical and logical minds of scientists are simply not as compatible with the acceptance of religion.

  • 9. etched  |  August 3, 2007 at 12:24 pm

    When i was a kid, i had so much faith in God because i was brought up in an environment that teaches me to have faith in Him. I went to Sunday school every week and was told everything that God did for us and the many stories from the Bible that encourages us to have faith and that thins will always be better if we turn to God.

    Now, i am an atheist and i really don’t feel or see a difference with or without a God in my life. When something bad happens to me, it will always get better somehow.

    My life is still good, with ups and downs.
    I am really intrigued with your post and it starts me thinking again, where did all my faith go to?

  • 10. lostgirlfound  |  August 3, 2007 at 12:48 pm

    The whole “names of God” is often described as how God reveals himself to people. Like, if you saw him as “provider,” you might call him “Jehovah Jirah.” He’s still the same God … it’s what characteristic you understand about him. Not different gods.
    So, is that the same in Hindu? Or Egyptian religious practices? Aren’th they separate dieties? But don’t each of them represent a characteristic, too? Maybe we’re all talking about the same “god” at the end of the day?

    Also, Dan needs to remember that religion and science are complimentary, but you can’t use one to “prove” the other. God believers will tell you (or should tell you) that faith is the “evidence of things not seen.” Why the need to “scientifically” prove his or her existance?

    That’s where I struggle in my understanding, I guess. We tend to “pick and choose,” and conform what we call revealed words of God to our own understanding. If it’s really true that his “word” is life, shouldn’t it be the other way around? That we conform to it — not we bend it and break it and edit it to make us feel good about what we already believe?

  • 11. mysteryofiniquity  |  August 3, 2007 at 2:25 pm

    Great post The de-Convert.

    I wonder what “invisible attributes” of God we are supposed to “see” in nature? What about God’s “divine nature” are we to learn about God from nature that is apparent?

    I see a world surrounded by cold, dark, airless space. I see organisms inhabiting a planet. I see a dog-eat-dog, cycle of life, bigger eats smaller, viciousness among all of these organisms. I see hurricanes, earthquakes, and floods killing many innocent and evil people alike. Weather is indiscriminate in its killing. Is God? I see no special miracles intervening to “save” the special few who acknowledge that nature is in control. Does God? I see poisonous insects and defense-mechanisms in order to survive. I see drought and starving children. I see malaria and other diseases.

    What about God’s divine nature are we supposed to intuit from all this? That God, like the universe is capricious, indiscriminate, cold, and impersonal in dealing with all of creation, including humans, and who cannot be moved by special circumstances. I see a God that does not intervene in these organisms’ affairs. This seems a logical conclusion to come to.

    Of course someone will see “love” and “flowers” and the beauties of nature. But it is all impersonal. Two sides of an impersonal transcendent “being” that is incapable of interacting or becoming immanent in human organisms. I think if we rely on the bible to “describe” God, we are most pitiable.

  • 12. eye-of-horus  |  August 3, 2007 at 2:47 pm

    It was the Corporate Committee on Systematic World Ordering which initiated the RFP, cost-plus basis. Failure to recognize that Hellaburton was an unreliable contractor, certain problems with shoddy workmanship and substandard materials quickly emerged.

    These however were plastered over for at least 4 billion years until the first multicellular creatures appeared in the Precambrian oceans. By then it was too late. The last 550 million years have been one unforeseen disaster after another, culminating in Nature’s Greatest Mistake, humanity.

    Something must be done. The Corporate Committee on Oort Cloud Debris hopes to find a suitably large comet in the next 65 million years, give or take 5 millions years.

  • 13. walkthewok  |  August 3, 2007 at 3:56 pm

    First and foremost, I do believe that the Bible is the Word of God.

    This is a response to your first question: However, you then became specific and implied that God=”specifically, the God of the Bible. “Why?”

    The following answer is merely a potential answer that I have found on the internet. If you are sincerely looking for answer to your question, you might find the following paragraph an interesting read, whether or not you agree with it. I’ll copy it verbatim here:

    “Do other holy books contain proof of God?

    No other book ever written comes close to proving reliability from God. While historical accuracy and archaeology are some trademarks of the Bible, they only support the Bible’s accuracy. The proof that God inspired it involves analysis of Prophecy, Scientific Insights, Creation and Concealed Evidence. ALL of these areas prove supernatural communication. But the greatest proof is PROPHECY since only God knows the future. (If other ways of knowing the future worked, there would be no gambling industry.) The Bible tells it’s readers to “test everything” [1 Thes 5:21] and to use prophecy to know if something is from him [Deut 18:22; Is 41:22-23]. Not surprisingly, other holy books avoid prophecy. A few attempt a few prophecies… and fail. The Bible’s vast number of verifiable prophecies – without a single error – clearly separates it from other holy books. On top of that are scientific insights, concealed evidence and the precisely accurate account of Creation… which no other holy book can claim. Without question, the Bible is the ONLY holy book that we can be absolutely certain was inspired by God.”
    Source: http://www.evidenceofgod.com/answers/god3.htm

    Note that I myself do not know anything about the other holy books and prophecies from those books, but I do know enough Biblical prophecies that were fulfilled in Jesus and other prophecies that continue to be fulfilled in our present time. If you have evidence that other holy books contain prophecies that have never failed, I’m the type of guy that would be interested in seeing such evidence if you’d like to show it.

    Furthermore, the following page may be of interest to you also.
    “Why isn’t the Evidence Clearer?”
    http://www.leaderu.com/orgs/probe/docs/evidence1.html

  • 14. Brad  |  August 3, 2007 at 4:06 pm

    A good way to look at it, especially in light of the verse that Dan quoted, is that nature gives us a proof and some evidence OF God’s existence, and His identity is shown and illustrated by His revelation to humanity (scripture).

    There are a ton of tangential issues The de-Convert brought to bare on this topic, and to respond to all or some would take forever. Suffice to know that the above is the Christian claim.

  • 15. nic  |  August 3, 2007 at 5:09 pm

    I really appreciate your article. Thanks

  • 16. Joe James  |  August 3, 2007 at 5:09 pm

    I stumbled upon this blog today. I am a Christian (minister for that matter) who appreciates your posting. I would love to join the conversation, at this point, but would rather read on and listen to the discussion first. But I will introduce myself, so you’ll know who is reading an listening – My name is Joe James – I am a Chrisitan disciple, minister, husband, son, brother, and friend. I am extrememly discontent with current Christian themes, claims, and scenes in general in the west. If you visit my blog you will note that this is true.

    Our society – humanity indeed, needs more people diligently seeking – like you, whoever you are. It sickens me to see so Many “Christians” who stick to safe answers for every question under the Sun. It seems to me for them to say “i don’t know” is impossible. Indeed this would be failure to them.

    For what it’s worth, I think Dan has taken the Romans 1 passage about what has “been made clear” completely out of context. That entire passage is designed to turn the tables of judment back on the believing Christians head – See Romans 2:1.

  • 17. Elijah Felon  |  August 3, 2007 at 5:17 pm

    The Sun of God is clearly seen in creation. The invisible god of the Jews and the Christians was not seen in creation;and, except for in the imagination of the wicked, has he been seen to this day.

    We listen to Jesus the Sun of God who has returned and given us stregnth to purge the earth of evil (which is the same thing as white people).

    We practice the new science the Sun of God has revealed to Dr. Yacub 7 Ali teaching us how to use our eumelanin to aggressively absorb and direct ultraviolet light onto the skin of whites to burn them with skin cancers and melanoma.

    “Whites have called every other man upon the earth ugly, evil and inferior. Yet that which giveth life to everything upon the earth, the Sun, burneth him. That which gives life to everything upon the earth is God. God giveth life to everything on the earth but the white man and the thing which come after him and are as him. That which giveth life to everything upon the earth giveth the superior white man 10 minutes in the Sun before his ’superior’ skin starts to burn. The Sun hates the white man. Nature hates the white man. God hates the white man’ – Prophet & scientist Yacub 7 Ali

    Learn How to Give White People Melanomas

    Yacub 7 Ali

  • 18. Kaiyen  |  August 3, 2007 at 5:19 pm

    Interesting to say the least. I’d actually like to address one of the tangential topics, since it seems that people *generally* believe that the awesomeness of creation points to SOME kind of greater being.

    The de-Convert, you mentioned the multiple names of God used in the Hebrew text of the Bible: Elohim, mostly, but also Yahweh/Jehovah.

    In Genesis 1:1, it says his name is Elohim. That’s a plural word. Does it mean God is a plurality?

    I assume that you are slightly familiar with Christian doctrine or at the very least, the idea of the Trinity. Three beings, but one God, which is somehow mysteriously different from various “forms” of God. What I mean by this mysterious difference is that all three beings coexist at the same time, but all are the same deity. Whereas, in other religions with different forms of deities, the god enters a different form, but cannot coexist in multiple forms at the same time. Zeus was never both in his toga-wearing form and cow form at the same time.

    Your description of Elohim was also detailed, but also somewhat subtly skewed. Adam and Eve walked with God, yes…while they were perfect and sinless. He chatted with Cain and Abel. But was there any indication they saw his face? What would be the difference between Cain and Abel “chatting” with God and Paul “chatting” with God? He came into Abraham’s tent for a visit in, what Bible scholars believe, the form of Jesus in his pre-incarnate form. Many people saw Jesus in later times without problems. The point is, there is no contradiction in the fact that sinful humans have never been in the presence of Elohim as the Father.

    However, the “God of the Bible” then goes through a radical transformation.

    Interesting how you considered Elohim compassionate and personal while consulting with Abraham before he decimated Sodom and Gomorrah, but later consider God to be impersonal and untouchable on Mt. Sinai, where he was having a nice conversation with Moses. I don’t quite see the transformation myself.

    As to the issue of changing names? If you were an almighty, indescribable God, how would one name suit you for every purpose? Each of the names describe different attributes of God, just like how Jesus calls God both King of kings, the Redeemer, and the Counselor.

    Now, let’s look at the New Testament. Is there any reason to believe that God never loved the world, when he was already setting up Abraham’s descendants to bring forth the line of Judah and eventually Jesus?

    I think the reason that Jesus’ teaching contains a lot about the love of God is because the Jewish people had forgotten about it over the centuries. They started, like many people today, to assume that the God of the Old Testament was a God of anger and wrath. And don’t think that Jesus never showed anger and wrath either. Trashing the Holy Temple of Jerusalem? Calling the most privileged and influential people in Jewish society poisonous snakes and whitewashed tombstones (and not just once)? Not quite the docile, friendly, happy-go-lucky view of Jesus most people have. Had he been in today’s world, most people would have responded to him the same way they did back then: calling him an activist, a disturbance of the peace.

    Moreover, The de-Convert, you start out talking about Elohim being personal, complaining that he becomes distant and trigger-happy, and then saying you’d like to chum with Buddy Jesus. Maybe this Elohim IS Jesus, because God IS that personal. And maybe, just on the other side to his complex, indescribable personality, God doesn’t have a contradiction with being personal and having righteous judgment and anger…

    Just some thoughts.

  • 19. mcclaud  |  August 3, 2007 at 5:34 pm

    What I find funny is that a lot of Christians don’t want to acknowledge the fact they are just a splinter off the Jewish faith. The Old Testament is from the Hebrews, Jesus was Jewish and even up to his death, still spoke highly of his people (the Hebrews). Only up to a point in Roman history did the Catholic, and (later) the rest of the Christian faiths all splinter off the Hebrew temple.

    So anytime a Christian attempts to say their God is THE God, I like to point out that their God is actually the Hebrew God. Jesus may be the Word, but he is only the Son of the Father of all Creation. And the Hebrews were highly influenced by the Egyptians and what would later be known as the Persians.

    I also contend that a majority of scientists are not atheists – they just realize that there is more to the universe than – to quote a few Baptist people I’ve met in the South – “a bunch of angels spinning around a nucleus.” There is such perfection in the system of science. But as scientists themselves have proven, there cannot be such a system without a cause. There was such a small chance of any life being created on this planet, and an even smaller chance of evolved primates reaching such a state of sentience.

    Too much coincidence for me. I believe that there is a Creator, but to completely and safely say we know for sure the mind and substance of such a being is arrogant and overall self-destructive to our well-being. I don’t know why we have to run around claiming to know these things about “God.”

    When it comes to religion, I say, “Don’t be a follower of Men. Follow your heart. Faith is what you make it to be.”

  • 20. Hark All Yee Faithful « The Sound of EmCeeKhan  |  August 3, 2007 at 5:51 pm

    [...] 3rd, 2007 by mcclaud So in the discussion of “God” and science [...]

  • 21. Thinking Ape  |  August 3, 2007 at 7:54 pm

    walkthewok says,

    No other book ever written comes close to proving reliability from God.

    and then says,

    Note that I myself do not know anything about the other holy books and prophecies from those books

    Perhaps you will have a different opinion once you read and study other “holy books.”

  • 22. Top Posts « WordPress.com  |  August 3, 2007 at 7:58 pm

    [...] Which God is “clearly seen” in creation? [image]On my previous blog entry, Dan made the following comment in an attempt to save us: A common claim made by […] [...]

  • 23. Stu  |  August 3, 2007 at 8:30 pm

    They say beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I’d go further: beauty is in the mind of the beholder. It’s all very well to point to the “beauty” of creation, but there’s nothing intrinsically beautiful about it. There is no objective beauty out there waiting for some intelligent being to discover it. Rather there exist beings that have evolved an awareness of the world around them, and along with that, certain pattern-recognition networks and pleasure-oriented reinforcement loops which have an evolutionary advantage.

    Don’t get me wrong, I’m as much in awe of a beautiful sunset as the next person, if not more so; understanding the mechanism of something doesn’t reduce the appreciation of it, for me it increases. In fact, I’m constantly in awe of the mechanism that exists in order to allow me to experience awe! There’s a feedback loop for you.

    Anyway my point is, maybe God created the beauty in the world to persuade us of his existence, or maybe there is no objective beauty out there and certain neural impulses simply excite more pleasure receptors than others. Either way, it’s not a clear cut thing.

  • 24. walkthewok  |  August 3, 2007 at 9:20 pm

    Thinking Ape: I am glad that you read and commented on my post. However, I believe that either I was not clear enough in what I said, or perhaps you read just a tad too quickly. Or, perhaps I misinterpreted your post. ^_^

    The first phrase was, as I so stated, a verbatim copy of an answer I found on the internet. It is NOT my answer. Those are NOT my words. It is an answer I found on the website I provided.

    The second phrase came from me. I made that phrase to indicate that I indeed do not know anything about the other holy books and prophecies, so while I am showing you an answer from another site, I am not accountable for the accuracy of those words. I merely provided that quote as an opportunity for discussion and for possible truth seeking.

    Thinking Ape, if you can show me other holy books and how their prophecies consistently come true, I’d sincerely be interested to see that.

    Until then, I’ll take the word of that person’s answer from the website I found. ^_^

  • 25. mysterybea  |  August 3, 2007 at 9:43 pm

    Brad said-
    “A good way to look at it, especially in light of the verse that Dan quoted, is that nature gives us a proof and some evidence OF God’s existence, and His identity is shown and illustrated by His revelation to humanity (scripture).”

    How is this a good way to look at anything? The only context under which your statement could possibly hold up is under the assumption that there is a god, a higher power, a designer. Many of us that read the articles on this website do not come to the game with those assumptions. If you were to look at nature with a completely blank slate of a mind, would your first thought go to someone having designed and created it? If we somehow traveled millions of light years away and found a perfectly wonderful thriving planets with its own forms of life and beautiful sunsets, would we assume that another deity had designed it? It all depends on our preconceived notions I guess. But to say that nature is the best proof of god’s existence is fraught with fallacies and circular logic.

  • 26. Thinking Ape  |  August 3, 2007 at 10:13 pm

    walkthewok,
    Sorry, I generally assume that when someone uses something as a source, they are not copy and pasting, but simply getting their facts from that source.
    I am a student of religion, not an apologist for religious plurality. However, how would you define “prophecy”? Personally, I distinguish “prophecy” from “promises.” “Prophecy” usually comes to us in ambiguous terms, usually because of their unchanging premises. This way, we can look at anything as a “fulfillment” of prophecy, despite the weak evidence for it. And then does one consider self-fulfilling prophecies, prophecies? For example, the State of Israel did not arise by itself, nor by divine intervention. It arose out of a political movement for the creation of the state, many of whom believe such a prophecy. This isn’t prophecy, this is cause and effect.
    Promises, on the other hand, are very different. Buddhists, for example, do not usher out “prophecies,” since Gautama Buddha found them irrelevant. Instead, the religious system is based on “promises.” It is a orthopraxy-based pragmatic philosophical religion. “If it doesn’t work, throw it out” Gautama says. The promise is, try it and you will “see things for as they really are.” Chrisitanity, likewise, offers similar promises (fruits of the spirit, etc.). The Buddhist system is antithetical to apologetics, whereas Christians would rarely say, “if it doesn’t work, throw it out” – it is just a completely different way of thinking.

    Honestly, if we really want to get into a debate concerning the validity of Christian prophecy fulfillment, it should be elsewhere. Much of my own de-conversion experience came out of the lack of credible fulfillment (yes, I even grasped at the Bible Code as a last ditch effort to save my faith in Biblical prophecy), and I would be more than happy to be convinced of Biblical credibility in this regard.

    As for your source, and if you are interested in some comparative religious prophecies, check out some of these sites:

    Baha’i on Buddhism: http://www.bci.org/prophecy-fulfilled/buddha.htm
    Baha’i on Zoroastrianism:
    http://www.bci.org/prophecy-fulfilled/zoroaste.htm
    Buddhist’s concerning Maitreya and others:
    http://www.maitreya.org/english/PBuddhism.htm
    Hindu, Bahai, Buddhist, Zoroastrian prophecy:
    http://www.rexresearch.com/prophist/phf6asia.htm
    Joseph Smith (Mormon) prophecies (for all the Romney fans):
    http://www.jefflindsay.com/LDSFAQ/FQ_prophecies.shtml

    There are many many more sites like this, but there are very few religions that actively seek out self-fulfillment (Christianity and Islam tend to be the leaders in this area, and both have caused this world great suffering because of it).

  • 27. Dan  |  August 4, 2007 at 1:30 am

    The thoughts of Kaiyen, kammi and others who sought to answer your questions in defense of Christianity reflect, for the most part, my opinions on the subject, so I don’t think it’s necessary to spend time re-writing their every contribution. Yeah, sorry for the cop out.

    But, I’m kind of wondering whether you already know the answers to the questions you asked me, because you seem as if you’d be well-versed with the Bible. It is not a book full of different gods, and I think that is quite obvious. Maybe you choose to look at it that way so that you can further discredit it in your own eyes, simply because God seems to act differently in some situations.

    The following site should answer your question about the “difference” in God’s behaviour in the OT and NT.

    http://www.gotquestions.org/God-different.html

    I will say that I don’t ignore the accounts of other religions. But for me, someone who has done a great deal of soul-searching and ‘testing the waters’ of other belief systems, Christianity became the only clear and natural choice. I am completely supporting of everyone’s choice when it comes to belief, and I will share my views with them like they do with me. Keep in mind that my object here was never to attempt to sway you to believe by a few simple statements. All I want to do is encourage atheists/skeptics to give Christ an honest, sincere chance (or another chance) and see if He won’t come into your life and help you understand why he truly is God.

  • 28. StaCeY  |  August 4, 2007 at 1:37 am

    I’m not quite sure…
    What was the question of origin here?
    And who actually originated this post?
    Or did it just … sort… of …. appear…..
    and evolve….. or de-evolve….
    (according to one’s perception)
    Do posts believe they have creators?
    Does this post have any SAY in it’s creation?
    The de-Convert? Do you really exist?
    R the rest of you here?
    Or did I make up this whole cyber experience…
    in the cosmic glands of my white coated psyche?

    I’m just kidding of course.

    But let me ask?
    If I type something astoundingly beautiful…
    does that make me a post goddess?

    would you need more evidence?

    or am I really just a cyber-borg
    halmark sunset making program.

    “Beings that have evolved an awareness of the world around them, and along with that, certain pattern-recognition networks and pleasure-oriented reinforcement loops which have an evolutionary advantage.”

    WOW! That really does nothing for my pleasure-oriented
    reinforcement loops.

    (sounds kinda like advertizing doesn’t it?–
    pleasure-oriented reinforcement loops.
    RU buying what the world is selling?)

    Seriously though,
    I do believe that the lowercase…
    self proclaimed gods/goddesses of the world…
    living in HIGH PLACES… FAR ABOVE the masses…
    use the whole notion of “evolution” to their own advantage…
    as they “cover” the manipulation of their “mass programming”…
    under the notion that we “evolve” every few years.
    (baby boomers, gen x and the like)

    We have given up our birthrights as co-creators of our own reality IN GOD…. for a beanie full of beans.

    Which gods indeed.

    Who is creating your reality?

    Brain chips anyone?
    (they MIGHT just be better than glands…
    and will surely make reinforcement loops obsolite!)
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    I really enjoy this blog.
    I feel more free to speak freely here than anywhere else.
    thank you. Don’t let my occasional sarcasms? put you off.
    I really am enjoying everyone’s thoughts.

  • 29. StaCeY  |  August 4, 2007 at 1:43 am

    LOL… beanie babies.

    I’m sorry. It’s late.

  • 30. Thinking Ape  |  August 4, 2007 at 2:20 am

    Dan says,

    But for me, someone who has done a great deal of soul-searching and ‘testing the waters’ of other belief systems, Christianity became the only clear and natural choice.

    I had to re-read this a couple times, but you are speaking about yourself in this endeavour of soul-searching, correct? How did you come to such a conclusion? Personally, whenever I “soul-search” (whatever that really means, I think differs from person to person), I find whatever I want to find – this doesn’t usually have much to do with truth, but more to do with my very flawed perspective of truth based on, dare I say, emotion.

    However, if I was forced at gunpoint to chose a contemporary world religion, based on internal and external evidences, hunches on humanity and nature, and basic moral outcomes, that religion would not be Christianity. This, of course, will differ for everyone, but simply stating the above quote as if it is fact or anything more than your opinion bears very little weight and needs to be based on something, no matter how minute.

    Even if Christianity is the choice of truth, it certainly is not “clear and natural” – such comments do not appear to come from someone who has genuinely “tested the waters” of any other belief system. I would be careful to make such statement outside of the internet world, where there is potentially limitless data concerning other religions at your fingertips. Anywhere else and I would put your tested waters to the test. Quite honestly, the statement sounds foolish and I would be skeptical of anyone that is so callous with their treatment of other religious beliefs that are far more philosophical in nature than their own.

  • 31. Doma  |  August 4, 2007 at 2:45 am

    There is a plurailty in God, He is triune: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And Hinduism is not the oldest faith, but the faith of Adam, handed down eventually to Abraham, and then eventually to Israel/Jacob.

  • 32. lunawolf  |  August 4, 2007 at 3:10 am

    walkthewok, you ought to read a little Thomas Paine in “The Age of Reason” where he explains that the word “prophet” is used to describe a poet or musician.

    “The Bible’s vast number of verifiable prophecies – without a single error – clearly separates it from other holy books.”

    And these futuristic predictions you speak of, where are they? Why aren’t they clear? If the “prophets” were talking about Jesus Christ before he was born, why didn’t they say “Jesus Christ?” Instead they vaguely describe some way that God would come down and fight for them.

    The way you put so much credit in these prophets and take their prophesies as fact reminds me of the fervor that fans of Nostradomus show when they attribute his verses to WWII, 9/11 and any other disaster that has happened in recent memory. It’s too bad these “prophesies” only fit the verses after these events already happen, and not before.

  • 33. lunawolf  |  August 4, 2007 at 3:15 am

    hahahaha! And your link at the end of your post!!! My goodness sake!

    A passage from that horrible website:
    Some are tempted to apply the rule that “the more critical the decision, the clearer the evidence must be.” They demand that the evidence for Christianity must be extraordinarily and especially clear to win their allegiance. The problem with this standard is that it assumes that there are no consequences to the decision. If, however, there are cataclysmic consequences to the observer, he will have to settle for “sufficient evidence, or the most trustworthy evidence.”

    The more appropriate rule is: “The more severe the consequences, the less we should take risks.” Therefore, even if biblical Christianity has a less than one-in-ten-million chance of being true, we should accept it because the possibility of an eternal Hell is such a great torment. If the available evidence shows that biblical Christianity is “the most trustworthy” of all religions, then we are on even firmer ground.

    So, the answer to the lack of evidence in the existence of God is that we don’t NEED evidence because if we are wrong about the OVERWHELMING EVIDENCE OF EVOLUTION we will be sent to hell. What an argument! I’m sold!

  • 34. Matt  |  August 4, 2007 at 3:23 am

    “While historical accuracy and archaeology are some trademarks of the Bible, they only support the Bible’s accuracy.”

    … Um. Sure.

  • 35. Lee  |  August 4, 2007 at 3:25 am

    Very eloquent in your case for the existence of God and your apologetics on behalf of New Testament doctrine and the diety of Jesus Christ. I would like to add the following consideration in support of Christianty. With respect to the argument of the equivalency of the so-called great religions, the authority and primacy of Christianly is derived specifically and majestically from the person of Jesus Christ. No other religious order dares the audacity to claim that it’s high priest and chief prophet lives, much less, reigns as one with God. Moreover, no other religion sets forth a clear, simple and perfectly just plan of salvation. That, of course, being subtitutionary atonement through faith in Christ.
    As for those other doctrines and philosophies: The mystic/pantheistic, TM and New Age constructs call upon adherents to find harmony with the cosmos by the elevaton of self. That is most certainly a hopelessly fragile and uncertain means by which to attain unity wirh God or peace and assurance in the face of the calamities of life and ultimately death. In the case of the other “great religions”, essentially Judaism and Islam, it’s adherants believe in finding favor with God by means of deeds and conformity to an endless array of specifications. This too is an utterly arbitrary and ill-defined standard. A just and righteous God cannot and will not determine the eternal outcome of the individual on what amounts to an unfathomable points system.
    For myself, I am perfectly content and secure in my Christain faith, both spiritually and intelectually, based on numerous influences incluiding the testimony of the Scripture, mans innate awarenss of the existence of God and the hearkening of the Spirit of God along with the evidende of “things seen and things not seen”.

  • 36. Thinking Ape  |  August 4, 2007 at 3:31 am

    lunawolf, if you end up going to hell with me, at least we can have a chat with the dalai lama and gandhi.

    doma:

    There is a plurailty in God, He is triune: Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. And Hinduism is not the oldest faith, but the faith of Adam, handed down eventually to Abraham, and then eventually to Israel/Jacob.

    I really have a problem with this alternate history. It always confused me when I was a kid. I had to learn about all these silly Sumerians, Akkadians, Egyptians, but my history books just didn’t line up with what I thought the Bible said. Doma, I hate to break the news, but we have paintings from homo sapiens sapiens (that’s us) from 40,000 years ago. Very well done. We have entire cities before anyone had ever heard of a “Hebrew.” The bible itself offers internal evidence for this: where did Abraham come from? A group of YHWH worshipers? NO. He came from a much older Sumerian culture.

    I really really hope you send your kids to school so they stand a chance. Alternate histories are so uncool. Not even your Jewish or Christian historians believe what you just said.

  • 37. lunawolf  |  August 4, 2007 at 3:36 am

    “A clear, simple and perfectly just plan of salvation” that doesn’t rely on “finding favor with God by means of deeds and conformity to an endless array of specifications?”
    This clear, simple plan includes God killing his son because he isn’t strong enough to keep the devil from taking over the hearts of humans who are all born evil anyway.

    Here’s scripture for ya:
    “Faith without DEEDS is dead”
    So yeah, that sounds like your religion DOES find favor with God through deeds!
    Unless, of course you’re saying that all a person has to do is believe and not even worry about his actions in order to get into Heaven.

    Glad your faith is strong. Faith is the evidence of things not seen, you are right in that respect. So why do so many Christians feel the need to look elsewhere for evidence of their God and then shove it down people’s throats? If a person has a lot of faith, they don’t really need to try to convince anyone else of their own views, do they? Or maybe Christians don’t have as much faith as they claim, else they wouldn’t have to argue so loudly.

  • 38. lunawolf  |  August 4, 2007 at 3:38 am

    See ya there, ThinkingApe! I’ll bring my copy of “Origin of the Species”!

  • 39. perfect from now on  |  August 4, 2007 at 6:11 am

    i don’t think there is a god. in any form.

    this will probably offend some, but it’s an explanation of my godlessness.

  • 40. astarwashere  |  August 4, 2007 at 9:04 am

    “Put your faith in science”

    – Richard Dawkins

  • 41. Thinking Ape  |  August 4, 2007 at 11:31 am

    lunawolf, forget the book, we’ll be able to chat it up with Charlie-boy himself!

  • 42. Ronald  |  August 4, 2007 at 12:09 pm

    The God [ELOHIM, EL, THEOS] of the Bible (Yahweh) was worshiped long before there was any of the religions of the world. About 6,000 years ago, Eve recognized Yahweh as ELOHIM, when, after giving birth to Cain, she said: “I have gotten a man with Yahweh’s help.” (Genesis 4:1. World English Bible translation throughout, unless specified otherwise) It Yahweh who is identified as the Creator:

    Genesis 2:4 – This is the history of the generations of the heavens and of the earth when they were created, in the day that Yahweh God made earth and the heavens.

    In the Hebrew part of the Bible (Old Testament), Yahweh presents Himself with different contrasts, all of which are harmonious once understood from the right perspective. We are told of a Creator who is so far above man as to be aloof in His holiness. He is “the high and lofty One who inhabits eternity” (Isaiah 57:15). Yet in the same verse, He also dwells with him “who is of a contrite and humble spirit.” We read of Him in Isaiah 55:9, “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts.” He is portrayed as an exactor of strict justice, who is “of purer eyes than to see evil” (Habakkuk 1:13). He is “a jealous God, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children, on the third and on the fourth generation of those who hate me” (Exodus 20:5). He tolerated no rivals, giving as His first commandment, “You shall have no other gods before me.” (Exodus 20:3). He spoke to Moses “face to face, as a man speaks to a friend” (Exodus 33:11). Abraham was known as “a friend of God” (James 2:23). We read of Him in Amos 3:7, “Surely the Lord Yahweh will do nothing, Unless he reveals his secret to his servants the prophets.” But such servants were few and far between. Of others we read “Make the heart of this people fat, and make their ears heavy, and shut their eyes; lest they see with their eyes, and hear with their ears, and understand with their heart, and turn again, and be healed” (Isaiah 6:10).

    While in the Hebrew part of the Bible, Yahweh is mostly presented in relation to condemnation of sin, in the Greek part of the Bible, his mercy and love toward all mankind is exalted, due to the satisfaction of justice by means of the sacrificial death of Yahweh’s Son. “As in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive” (1 Corinthians 15:21). The logic of this redemption is simple: one perfect sinless human life in place of another perfect life forfeited by sin, and justice is satisfied.

    All through the Bible, Yahweh, by means of his holy spirit, reveals through the scriptures that Yahweh (Jehovah) is the only true God, the God and Father of the Lord Jesus. Jesus has One who is the Supreme Being over him; Jesus is not his Supreme Being whom he worships, prays to, and who sent him, and whose will he carried out in willful obedience. Yahweh, the only true God who sent Jesus, is always distinguished from Jesus. — Deuteronomy 18:15-19; Matthew 4:4 (Deuteronomy 8:3; Luke 4:4); Matthew 4:7 (Deuteronomy 6:16); Matthew 4:10 (Exodus 20:3-5; 34:14; Deuteronomy 6:13,14; 10:20; Luke 4:8); Matthew 22:29-40; Matthew 26:42; Matthew 27:46; Mark 10:6 (Genesis 1:27; Genesis 2:7,20-23); Mark 14:36; 15:34; Luke 22:42; John 4:3; 5:30; 6:38; 17:1,3; 20:17; Romans 15:6; 2 Corinthians 1:3; 11:31; Ephesians 1:3,17; Hebrews 1:9; 10:7; 1 Peter 1:3; Revelation 2:7; 3:2,12.

    See:
    Scriptures That Show That Jesus (Yahshua) Is Not Yahweh (Jehovah)

    The words ELOHIM, EL, THEOS are not “names” for Yahweh, except in the sense these titles can be spoken of as a “name” in a general sense, as “tree” is a general name for the certain kind of plants that we have designated as such. The words ELOHIM, EL, and THEOS signify strength, power, might. ELOHIM is plural in form, but is not always used in plural settings. The Hebrew does use the plural form of a word in a singular setting to intensify the meaning, similar to the English superior and superlative forms: higher (superior), highest (superlative). Thus ELOHIM, when used in a singular setting, when used of Yahweh, denotes the superlative: “Mightiest”. With this thought also, however, is the Yahweh is “the Might” of the universe. Being the source of all might, there is no might aside from Him. — Isaiah 44:6; 45:5,21.

    See:
    Elohim – Does This Word Indicate a Plurality of Persons in a Godhead?

    The words EL and ELOHIM are many times in the Bible used of others than Yahweh.

    See:
    Hebraic Usage of the Titles for God

    We note that ELOHIM is used of Moses in reference to Moses’ relationship to Pharaoh:

    Exodus 7:1 – And Jehovah saith unto Moses, ‘See, I have given thee a god [ELOHIM, as a mightier one] to Pharaoh, and Aaron thy brother is thy prophet [spokesperson].’ — Young’s Literal Translation

    Likewise, Jesus is presented a mighty one (THEOS), who, as the LOGOS, was with his God, the only true God , in the beginning, before the world of mankind, which world Yahweh made by means of the LOGOS. — John 1:1-3,10; 17:1,3,5.

    See:
    John 1 and the Word (Logos) of God

    Genesis presents the fall of mankind from the glory of God into sin, and also offers the first prophecy of being released from sin, as by means of the seed of a mysterious woman, whose seed is prophesied to bruise the head of the serpent. (Genesis 3:15) Thus, a hope was presented of the reversal of the effects of the serpent’s lie to Eve, and of the disobedience that resulted. This theme is kept up throughout the whole Bible, and every book of the Bible in some way relates to this theme.

    Because Adam disobeyed, God sentenced him (and the race in his loins) to death — not eternal torment or eternal separation from God. However, God in his great love caused his Son to be “made flesh,” “a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death . . . that he by the grace of God should taste death for every man.” — Genesis 2:17; 3:17-19; Romans 5:6-19; 1 Corinthians 15:21,22; Matthew 20:28; John 1:14; 3:14-18; Hebrews 2:9.

    The “good tidings of great joy, which will be to all people,” centers in Jesus, the “ransom for all, to be testified in due time.” This “good tidings” guarantees to “all men” (Acts 17:31) one (no individual second chance for any of Adam’s race) full, fair opportunity for everlasting life (either in this life or after being awakened from the dead — John 5:28,29, New American Standard). God “wills all men to be saved [from Adamic condemnation; but this does not mean that they will automatically live eternally], and to come to the knowledge of the truth.” — Luke 2:10; 1 Timothy 2:3-6; 4:10.

    See:
    The Day of Judgment

    In service of Jesus and his God,
    Ronald

  • 43. lunawolf  |  August 4, 2007 at 6:39 pm

    Why is Ronald using scripture from the book as evidence that the book is relevent? You can’t prove a source as legitimate by using the very source that is in question. You can, however, collect SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE to prove that the bible’s history lessons are nothing more than the myth of a people.

  • 44. Thinking Ape  |  August 5, 2007 at 12:00 am

    Ronald, in the epic of gilgamesh…

  • 45. Ronald  |  August 5, 2007 at 5:47 pm

    The extra-Biblical account of the Epic of Gilgamesh, although given to fancies, does give support to the Biblical record.
    http://tinyurl.com/yr95p3

    The following is an excerpt from the book, The Bible as a Rising Civilization, by Paul Mali (1998):

    Cornfield and Freedman9 give evidence of the Fourteenth Century BC with twelve large clay tablets of the epic of King Gilgamesh found in a Canaanite stratum of a Megiddo community. This is a support of the flood in geological times. These tablets give the Babylonian account of the flood and is in close agreement with the Bible. The Gilgamesh record cites the flood disaster was in Mesopotamia approximately the fourth millennium BC. The tablets record the story of a chief god who sent a flood to destroy humanity. This god gave instructions for building an ark. This god saved a family. The flood came and the ark rested on the mountain top. The Gilgamesh narrative resembles the Biblical account. Unger10 describes and compares the agreements and the disagreements between the Biblical and Babylonian Gilgamesh accounts. Here are the close agreements. Both accounts say the flood was initiated by a deity. Both accounts say the deity revealed the flood to one person who became the hero of the saga. Both accounts connect the flood with moral decay in the civilization of the time. Both accounts cite deliverance of a hero in a large boat. Both accounts describe the cause of the flood as torrential rains and underneath water movements. There are disagreements in the accounts. Both disagree in the nature and definition of the deity behind the flood. The Babylonian conception of the deity is quite a grotesque comparison. The Biblical conception is one of a holy and wise God. The Babylonian account describes quarreling, self-accusing deities, polytheistic in nature with childish disclaim over the responsibility for causing the flood. Both disagree on the moral causes of the flood. The Biblical account cites a moral judgment on the people. The Babylonian account cites the flood as a capricious game of the Gods. In any event, the Gilgamesh record, a secular non-Biblical source confirms the flood episode lending credence to archaeological evidence of this ancient Biblical phenomena.

    In service of Jesus and his God,
    Ronald

  • 46. Thinking Ape  |  August 5, 2007 at 6:37 pm

    Ronald, I am happy that you, like many others, seem to think that flood narratives are somehow evidence for something more than the ancient world’s predicament of living with floods (due to the fact that all major cities needed to be by bodies of water), but if you are so willing to accept that as evidence, why chose the Biblical account of creation over the Gilgamesh account of creation?

  • 47. cragar  |  August 6, 2007 at 11:09 am

    TA–great responses to doma and Ronald.

    I always found the Bible’s account of creation a big conflict. When you do a little studying and find out that the earliest versions of humans originated in Africa and were in Asia thousands (if not tens of thousands) of years before Europe, yet the Bible seems to have everyone in Europe.

    And then there is no mention of the almost-man Neanderthals which were eliminated by the homosapiens or merged with them. You would think the Bible would mention the almost made in my image version of man.

  • 48. Thinking Ape  |  August 6, 2007 at 11:20 am

    Thank you Cragar. Quite honestly, the Biblical narrative, if held symbolically, can be quite powerful. Literalists are often afraid of the fallacious slippery slope, but I continue to hold that the narrative, especially that which is found in Genesis, is full of profound truth – that the earth is 6000 years old simply isn’t one of them.

  • 49. Joe James  |  August 6, 2007 at 11:40 am

    Again – I want to respond to Dan’s comment in the comments section. Dan has done what I would hope to see Christians stop doing in the near future – to give answers to every question.
    Dan giving you the website, gotquestions.org, is a prime example of Christians with some wierd complex and compulsion to answer everyone’s questions with solid answers. This is neither necessary nor is it biblical.

    Again – I remind you that I am a Christian. However, I share some of the same doubts and concerns as does the author of this blog. The role of the Christian is not to be “Mrs. Answer Woman” but to be honest and admit that we share some of the same struggles as other people do. Crap! If you’ve got it all figured out, then what is faith for?

    For crying out loud, struggle with someone for ONCE! Stop being the authority on everything. And please, read Job 38. God doesn’t need people to come to his defense. He is perfectly capable of taking the questions and taking responsibility himself.

  • 50. Elijah Felon  |  August 7, 2007 at 4:33 am

    As the rapture has already taking place we now recognize the Book of Life as the leading book replacing the Bible. By your writings, you are the lot left behind. You know not the day nor the hour.

    From the Bible:
    Luk 12:39 And this know, that if the goodman of the house had known what hour the thief would come, he would have watched, and not have suffered his house to be broken through.

    The Sun of God’s reproach thought he could live as he wanted to carelessly – never recognizing he is the ungodly man these ‘ultraviolet’ fires are burning – Yacub 7 Ali

    Is this the man who did cause all the nations of the earth to tremble? He can’t even go outside in the Sun of God – Yacub 7 Ali

  • 51. Hindu Gods Made Known through Creation? « All Wrong  |  August 7, 2007 at 8:35 am

    [...] to claim that God can be clearly seen in creation. In a response, someone has asked, “Which God?” Among the suggested alternatives were Brahma, Vishnu and Krishna. I was [...]

  • 52. wayman29  |  August 20, 2007 at 5:13 pm

    Excellent. I love this topic. I also have been brining out such similarities across religions. Excellent work!

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Attention Christian Readers

Just in case you were wondering who we are and why we de-converted.

de-conversion wager

Whether or not you believe in God, you should live your life with love, kindness, compassion, mercy and tolerance while trying to make the world a better place. If there is no God, you have lost nothing and will have made a positive impact on those around you. If there is a benevolent God reviewing your life, you will be judged on your actions and not just on your ability to blindly believe in creeds- when there is a significant lack of evidence on how to define God or if he/she even exists.

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