Fact or Fantasy: The Mythic Past and Present Day Reality

(As a break from working on my forth coming post on human sacrifice in the Bible (which is well under way) I decided to post this topic.)

When a myth is set in the past it is protected by the passing of time, but often present day reality is infected with this world of fantasy which, inturn, creates the illogical . Thus, even today, many people who make a promise will Knock on Wood to ward off the bad Karma that might bring the Evil Eye or ill will.

Now lets look at some ways the Bible and its religions make statements to similarly inspire hope and faith, but are unfounded or un-provable claims that have more in common with nationalistic and team sport ideals than scientific fact. Here are a few:


A. George Washington threw a silver dollar across the Potomac River.

Jesus rose from the death and ascended into Heaven.


B. George Washington never told a lie. Want proof: The story about George cutting down his father’s Cherry Tree. George would rather take his punishment than to tell a lie.

C. Jesus Christ was 100% God and 100% man who never sinned.


D. There existed at one time (but are now extinct) Hoop Snakes which could bit their tails, thus forming a hoop or circle and roll down a hill at speeds up to 30 miles per hour.

Jesus walked on water and healed the sick.


E. There was a Fountain of Youth from which if one was to drink, they would never die. Proof: Ponce De Leon tried to locate it, but it must have either dried up are is still yet to be found.

Jesus said: Whoso eateth my flesh, and drinketh my blood, hath eternal life; (John 6 54)



Apart from the above, both religion and folklore get themselves into trouble when, what they claims as factual truth, is placed in the here and now or present time. Again, lets look at some:

A. A Milk Snake will locate a cow full of milk (usually in a barn) and drink her dry. Need proof: Farmers have always had to deal with cows who suddenly quit producing milk and many have seen Milk Snakes in their barns.

Jesus said: Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father. (John 14:12)


B. There is a Pot of Gold at the end of the Rainbow. (If you have not been at the end of a rainbow, how do you know this is not true? Give me your proof as I accept it by faith!)

Jesus said: In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. (John 14:2)


C. If you cut the head off a snake, it will not died until the sun goes down.

Jesus said: Wherefore if thy hand or thy foot offend thee, cut them off, and cast them from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life halt or maimed, rather than having two hands or two feet to be cast into everlasting fire. And if thine eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: it is better for thee to enter into life with one eye, rather than having two eyes to be cast into hell fire. (Matt. 18: 8-9)


E. Bad Blood can make you sick. George Washington was bleed to remove this Bad Blood. This “Bleeding” did not kill George Washington, but the fact they were unable to drain enough “Bad Blood” from him did.

Jesus: "said unto him, Go, wash in the pool of Siloam, (which is by interpretation, Sent.) He went his way therefore, and washed, and came seeing." (John 9 :7)


Finally:

F. If you break a mirror, you’ll have seven years of bad luck.

John the Revelator said about the book of Revelation: For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book. And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book. (Rev. 22: 18 - 19)

87 comments:

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Hi again Harry! I know there is teaching to the contrary, but my husband and I have actually been at the end of a rainbow (and not looking at it crossing the sky horizontally as is usually seen but from a different angle). Did we find a pot of gold at the end of it? Well, for us, (as our priority was fish at the time)the pot of gold was an entire school of rainbow trout!! It is cool that you brought this up because my husband and I were just talking about this and saying how it most likely is somewhat unusual but we took it for granted at the time. I was taught that it was impossible to reach a rainbow's end, but after that day, we relegated the former teaching as an old wives' tale that, by our experience, was debunked for us. At any rate, thanks for bringing this up! 3M

Rotten Arsenal said...

I've always used "The Parable of Big, Fat and Dead Elvis" to illustrate this same idea, Harry.

Since there are still people who completely believe that Elvis did not die in 1977 but continued to live, it is very easy to understand how myths happen. In 1977, literacy is the norm and electronic media and communications allowed for quick and fairly accurate news to spread.
And yet, people still believe things that aren't true.

So, if some guy had a bunch of friends who ran around telling stories about him by word of mouth and maybe a few written accounts and these were further spread by people with limited access to education and understanding of the natural world... that's how gods are created.

In fact, we still see the same phenomena happen in the modern world. Someone either thinks they have a revelation or just decided to make one up and tells other people who then believe it. We still have religions form today (Scientology) but it's more difficult for them to have the same effect because there are less "supernatural" mysteries in the educated world to found them on.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

RA wrote, "And yet, people still believe things that aren't true."

Yea I know what you mean - things like "you can't find the end of a rainbow" and, "There's no God".

Ciao!

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

I just came across an article about the discovery of a unicorn deer found on a nature preserve in Italy - he's adorable! I know how some liken faith to believing in unicorns so now you have it! He's not pink, but I'm almost certain if someone were really determined.......
3M

pwoon said...

Unicorns were like horses with one horn. This animal is a deer with antlers that happens to have an horn between his eyes, so no, not a unicorn.

Jason said...

Harry,

Can you prove George Washington never told a lie?

And if Jesus was truly a nationalist as you claim, he wouldn't have been despised and killed by the Jews.

Harry McCall said...

“Can you prove George Washington never told a lie?”

Jason, can you prove Jesus never sinned? Jesus did lie:

“Jesus answered him, "I have spoken openly to the world; I always taught in synagogues and in the temple, where all the Jews come together; and I spoke nothing in secret.” ( John 18:20)

Now Compare:
“and He did not speak to them without a parable; but He was explaining everything privately to His own disciples. (Mark 14:34)”.

J. "And if Jesus was truly a nationalist as you claim, he wouldn't have been despised and killed by the Jews."

Jason please quote the EXACT words where I said Jesus was a nationalist. This is simply how you debate; put a statement on my post then challenge me to defend it.

Jason, you remind me of a pack of wolves, you don’t have anything original to claim (you simply parrot worn out Christadelphian dogmas) and your ONLY claim here is to hopefully catch a poster in a mistake or make a claim the poster never said to debate them.

Can’t you do any ORIGINAL work? I can read Christadelphian junk anywhere on Google! Lets see if you can be anything but a pre-programmed Christadelphian robot.

You have been the same old non-orgianl thinker since I first encountered you here.

goprairie said...

Oooh, this unicorn with one ANTLER means it will drop it every year and grow a NEW one. If someone were to follow it around and collect the thing, we would have ICONS, RELICS! How exciting! Who wants in on THIS cult? Send me all your money and you can join me. But wait, wouldn't this be a unictler and not a unicorn? Hmmm, better think about this more . . . all I know for sure is it must SOMEHOW prove there is a god.

goprairie said...

MMM: And rainbows follow certain laws of physics. You could not have been at the END of a traditional huge sky spanning rainbow. Do you have a picture? Maybe you remember it that way. Maybe you BOTH remember it that way. But if you appeared to have been near where it ended, you were probably seeing a rainbow on mist over the body of water you were on and its arc was centered on your point of vision so that you were equal distance from both ends of a very small rainbow. If the plane of moisture in the air was not uniform, the rainbow can appear to not be a perfect arc and recede. You can make rainbows with a garden hose, but unless it is small enough, you can't actually BE at the end.
But the myth in question is not really where you can be in relation to the rainbow. The myth is regarding the pot of gold. For a pot of gold to pop into existance at the appearance of a ranbow would defy serious laws of physics. And 10 people a quarter mile apart could see the 'same' ranbow ending at different points. Do 20 pots of gold appear?
Is there a pot at each end?
Now you see where a rainbow aplogist could go from here. You claim to have been at the end of the rainbow and not seen a pot of gold. Maybe you were just at the WRONG end and there is only one. Maybe it sank to the bottom of the body of water and really WAS there? Since you got to the end, this PROVES it was not a REAL standard rainbow at all but some freak thing that appeared to be a rainbow and that is why you did not see it. That is why there is none at the end of a garden hose rainbow because it is a fake rainbow. So your rainbow was because of water evaporated from the body of water and not from left over cloud rainwater so it wasn't a real rainbow either so you would not expect there to be one. Since you can't get to the real end of a real rainbow, but because we have all been taught by hundreds of trusted friends and relatives that it is there, we just have to have FAITH that it is there. After we die and our souls cease to be affected by the silly laws of physics, THEN we CAN go to the end of the rainbow and get the gold reward and so the reward is only there for those who know to look, for those who BELEIVED. And because faith proves there is a pot of gold at the end of the rainbow and because beleiving in god requires faith, then god must exist.
How am I doing? Another cult in the making? Remember to send me all your money.

Harry McCall said...

mmm, the reason I really left Christianity was because once I was "Prayed Up" and "Paid Up" there was nothing left for me to do, thus I grew bored and; well you know the saying that “Idleness is the Devils Workshop”, well…

I gradutated form college with a "B.A." degree which means "Born Again".

I am ordained of God, but not of man, thus my views on Christianity offend “man”.

I believe the man in the moon is really made of cheese and the Pot of Gold at the rainbows end belongs to a leprechaun. How do I know all this, Jesus told me so.

I do believe that “mmm” is the promised messiah Y’shua. Can you prove you are not? I have now accepted you on faith that you are the promised Y'shua, the Messiah of Israel and any attempt to disprove this is of Satan.

The only prayer I now request to you is to help me evangelize everyone to my doctrine.

For I aske this in the name of "mmm". Amen

Jason said...

Harry,

You said George Washington never told a lie. I'm asking you how you know this to be fact?

Regarding the nationalistic comment, you said: Now lets look at some ways the Bible and its religions make statements to similarly inspire hope and faith, but are unfounded or un-provable claims that have more in common with nationalistic and team sport ideals than scientific fact.

My point is that Jesus wasn't nationalistic - he was the antithesis of nationalism, as can be seen in the fact he was killed by his own people, the Jews.

That's all - no reason to get you knickers in a twist.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

GP,you seem to take this unicorn business somewhat serious - I'm growing concerned about you. Also, I really apreciate the rainbow insights - perhaps what you deem freakish is miraculous?? After what you wrote, I'm beginning to think so!! At any rate, I'll share your input with my husband - I'm sure he'll be edified.

Harry, I've seen people write here complaining that they want a miracle as proof of God's existance - and yet, if a miracle did occur to you, would you be able to give credit for it and withstand the responses that you are handing out? Perhaps someday you'll find out - I know I did (and I'm not talking about the rainbow story either since I didn't even consider that anything other than a debunking of an old wives' tale until it was recently brought back to mind in a new perspective).

At any rate, I was looking at my abridged edition of the New Harry Testament Bible and yes, there it is! In bright fuschia letters - "Ye shall be tormented and hurt by pride infested people and in your anger and emotional pain, discard belief in God and turn to.....pride infested people!" That makes a lot of sense, doesn't it?

BTW, Harry, you are hereby commanded to follow the link to my blog so you can tithe all your money to me :-) Oh, what's that you say, it's set to "private"?? What an ulterior and sinister one am I!

Rainbows forever,
3M :-)

DingoDave said...

Manifesting Mini Me wrote:

"My husband and I have actually been at the end of a rainbow... Well, for us, (as our priority was fish at the time)the pot of gold was an entire school of rainbow trout!!"
and,
"Yea I know what you mean - things like "you can't find the end of a rainbow" and, "There's no God".

So, you found some fish swimming around in a pond, therefore God exists?

I hope you were joking MMM, but having read some of your other comments, I can't be sure.
Could you clarify this for me? Was this an example of 'Poe's Law' or were you being serious? In case your not familiar with Poe's Law, here is the definition.

Poe's Law states:
"Without a winking smiley or other blatant display of humor, it is impossible to create a parody of Fundamentalism that SOMEONE won't mistake for the real thing.
In other words, No matter how bizzare, outrageous, or just plain idiotic a parody of a Fundamentalist may seem, there will always be someone who cannot tell that it is a parody, having seen similar REAL ideas from real religious/political Fundamentalists."

I hope you can understand my dilemma.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

DD wrote, "So, you found some fish swimming around in a pond, therefore God exists?" That's an interesting conclusion you've drawn - at the time of the rainbow incident, I was agnostic so it wasn't the rainbow that changed my mind about the existance of God. My comment was in response to the second "B" item of the post - also I'm not so sure that "myth" is not a "miracle" now that, (thanks to Go Prairie's informative offering) I see the improbability of it.

At any rate, as always, I've been edified - thanks for the exchange!

3M

Harry McCall said...

Jason, both statements about Washington and Jesus were used as false metaphors. Jesus Christ was 100% God and 100% man who never sinned just like Washington never lied.

So answer my claim that Jesus lied:
“Jesus answered him, "I have spoken openly to the world; I always taught in synagogues and in the temple, where all the Jews come together; and I spoke nothing in secret.” (John 18:20)

Now Compare:
“and He did not speak to them without a parable; but He was explaining everything privately to His own disciples. (Mark 14:34)”.

How did Jesus speak “openly to the world” (Part “B” of this 2 part lie). Did Jesus have a short wave radio to broadcast to China and the Americas? How did Jesus speak “openly to the world”? Jesus knew about as much about the earth as he knew about the after life.

Jason: “My point is that Jesus wasn't nationalistic - he was the antithesis of nationalism, as can be seen in the fact he was killed by his own people, the Jews.”

Can you prove this? The Romans killed him. Jesus was Jewish, but he ran his mouth and it made only some Jews mad.

I’m I clear now?

Harry McCall said...

Greetings in the lovely Name of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.

Dearly Beloved:

Mmm, why is Jesus always Y’shua and God is only “God” with you? The name Y’shua means “Yahweh is salvation”. So, seeing that you use Yahweh in Y’shua, why not call God by his real name too: “Yahweh”?

Or, in English “Jesus” the “J” = J as in Jehovah.

Is it because most people would not know what you are talking about if you were to use both Semitic forms or is it because you ONLY have a relationship with Y’shua and not Yahweh?

Now, mmm; may Yahweh be with you. Depart in peace!

Jason said...

Harry,

Jesus spoke “openly to the world” in the same way his brothers asked Jesus to show himself "to the world" (John 7:4).

Can I prove the Jews killed Jesus? Sure: "But they cried, saying, Crucify him, crucify him." (Luke 23:21)

Harry McCall said...

“Jesus spoke “openly to the world” in the same way his brothers asked Jesus to show himself "to the world" (John 7:4).”

By your own reasoning (as in the limited reason support by the New Testament), the theology of the New Testament ONLY applies to the people in the then known world (Jesus’ limited world). Since I live in the New World about 4,000 miles away, the whole theology of the Bible does not apply to me.


“Can I prove the Jews killed Jesus? Sure: "But they cried, saying, Crucify him, crucify him." (Luke 23:21)”

Jason, cheering on the Romans is not the same as driving in the nails. Let’s just say they had free speech.

By your reasoning, the victim’s family outside the death chamber who views the execution is equal to the person who pushes the button to start the lethal drugs into the condemned man.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Harry, as always, a pleasure.

You wrote, "Mmm, why is Jesus always Y’shua and God is only “God” with you? The name Y’shua means “Yahweh is salvation”. So, seeing that you use Yahweh in Y’shua, why not call God by his real name too: “Yahweh”?"

I apologize for being so insensitive here. I realize this is really important to you - what would you prefer that I call Him - what did you call Him as a former believer?? I don't want to incite yet another lesson here even though these are informative of man's perspective and application of meaning upon the supernatural realm. The meaning that you have accepted and recite is from what other people have assigned to these names - I recognize God by the Spirit (or another way I say this is the God of Easter, but I know that term incites a bit of reaction as well). I recognize that fundamental religion can potentially promote a focus on literal meaning and translation of all sorts of words but that pursuit is not what ultimately saves us - what saves us is a spirit that defines within us and is expressed outwardly, the meaning of one word - "love".

Okay, your turn -
3M

Harry McCall said...

Mmm, “god’ or “God” is simply a generic appellative which is basically a worthless term. It defines something as much as “cat” or “Cat” does. Just because you capitalize the first letter means nothing. The term “El / ‘l” / god in the Bible is the same way. It is applied to every thing from Yahweh to Satan to all other Gods of the nations.

So if Y’shua / Jesus never used the term Yahweh, but only “theos”, we have really little to no idea who or what he was talking about since the “‘l” in the Bible has many forms and descriptions even in a Jewish context.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Harry, thanks for conversing - I appreciate your scholarship - I've learned something by faith - that God has His own dictionary - we often define love in terms that are very un"love"ly - whereby He does not have the pride infection in His definition. Those who practively pursue and seek to mature unlovely ways will ultimately reside where their practices can be perpetuated. I know that nonbelievers can be moral, but morality so often matures into self-righteous, a damnable condition and the mother of all sorts of love depravation. At any rate, Harry, thanks once again - good talking with you!

3M or MMM (whichever you prefer..)

Harry McCall said...

I think “3m” has her special dictionary. Thanks anyway.

My forthcoming post: “A God Driven by Blood and Death: Human Sacrifice and the Slaughter of Christ” will challenge your personal view of a“God of love" definition.

I will look forward to seeing just how you maintain your personal view of this God of love in light of the Biblical facts that Jesus supported (seeing that he NEVER preached against it).

goprairie said...

I have noticed a habit of certian kinds of christians to define words in their own way and to make up words from other words and assign them their own meanings. Often those words are sort of slippery slidey in meaning. These kinds of christians do not beleive in the bible literally and know that it is issue laden so they pick and choose what to believe just as they pick and choose what words mean. If you use logic to argue with them that their religion is silly, they claim that isn't how they meant it or you don't use the words the same way they do. When you ask them specifically what they believe about something, they answer another related question or define their beliefs so vaguely that it cannot be argued. They cannot be pinned down on what they do believe, either because they have not figured out a way around all the illogic or they just don't want to think about it deeply enough to define what they believe. When you give up trying to use logic and reason against their circles of shifting definitons, they claim a win or offer to pray for you because they love you. yet somehow that love is tinged with an arrogance that their way is right and if you were just smarter or less something or other (pick your insult and couch it in gentle made up words) you would just see it and you are deficient because you lack faith. well, words have commonly accepted meanings and made up words show laziness or slipperiness because there is a real word that will do to express your precise meaning if genuineness and precision are your goals. someone interested in genuine honest discussion does not use made up words or get slippery with meanngs. THey are honest about what they belive and why and can back up those beliefs. Those hanging around not to discuss but merely to annoy, irritate, pester, and wear down resort to those strategies, as do those lacking the intellect to BE precise. i generally refuse to engage in discussions with people not genuinely interested and let them have their imaginary win and let them pray to their imaginary god for me and pretend they have sincere goodness in their intentions. you can label it love all you want, but if it looks patronizing and condescending and sarcastic, it is. and those are not expressions of love. at least not by regular accepted definitions.

Harry McCall said...

Jason, in light of my comments about Jesus being truthful, I have one comment direct toward to Jesus himself: "Liar, liar; pants on fire!"

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Harry, just an awareness alert, but I'm well acquainted with all of the blood and gore that you could possibly pose - in fact, those verses are the ones that prompted me to search my own heart in ferreting out deceit, manipulation, greed, hatred, etc etc. Although outwardly moral, I harbored some immature seeds, that when demonstrated in their mature and more sinister form in others, would appall me (self righteousness!). When Y'shua said He is going to strike Jezebel's children dead, I can relate that Jezzie and I have both had the hand of grace extended to us - and by the grace of God, I have turned and my destructive ways and influence is dying out.

Having said that, you are most welcome to bring it on - thanks!

Ciao!
3M

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

So, GP, how on earth did you get the log of condescension and arrogance out of your eye? I love to hear people share their stories of overcoming. C'mon over and pay me a visit in the cabin I've built with all the logs that have been removed from eyes - yep - it takes one to recognize one but that doesn't mean there's not a way out of it.

Okey doke - as always - the best to you!

3M

Jason said...

Harry,

You're taking a past-tense comment made by Christ and trying apply it to yourself. I'm not sure why you're doing this...?

Also, if the Jews hadn't demanded Pilate kill Jesus, Pilate would have let him go free. Ergo, the Jews killed Jesus. I know you're smarter then this.

Harry McCall said...

Get real Jason! Read Josephus’ account of Pilate. The Jews did not control anything Pilate did.

If you believe what the Gospels say at face value, then (according to John’s Gospel), Christians had a right (as Luther claimed) to kill the Jewish people. You make it out like the Roman governor was a puppet of the religious Jews.

Jason, your problem is you only read the New Testament and think it’s history…hey, it’s theology.

Jason said...

Get real, Harry. "But they cried, saying, Crucify him, crucify him." (Luke 23:21)

The Jews wanted Jesus dead. Pilate, finding the man innocent, nonetheless bent to the whims of the mob and had Jesus subsequently killed. It is what it is. Pilate was willing to let Christ go, the Jews weren't.

Also, you took a past-tense comment made by Christ and tried apply it to yourself. Why?

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Harry, in keeping with the topic of this post - fact or fantasy - is that a Starbucks coffee cup in your earlobe (hopefully it's empty)? Is this fact or a photoshop fantasy?? Amazing!

3M

DingoDave said...

Isn't it a strange coincidence that the other prisoner Pilate offered for release was named
'Jesus Barabbas'?

Jesus Barabbas, when translated into English means 'Jesus, Son of the Father'.

mmmmm...

DingoDave said...

Goprairie wrote:
"I have noticed a habit of certian kinds of christians to define words in their own way and to make up words from other words and assign them their own meanings. Often those words are sort of slippery slidey in meaning."

I have heard it said that,
"Christians suck the meanings out of the words in their Bible, like a Cajun sucks the juice out of the head of a crayfish". :D

Harry McCall said...

mmm, FYI: This is not me, but it is a picture of a real guy! What a mess! This came from a website where these nuts post their tattooed and pierced bodies.

I wanted to play into the Christians who have a concept of an out of control Godless atheist.
What do you think?

I'll post my real picture sometime latter this year.

Harry McCall said...

Jason, you would NEVER make it at a major university (Harvard, University of Chicago, Yale) in the doctoral program in New Testament and Early Christian literature. You are plainly “simple mined” in that you think the Gospel writers tell the “Gospel truth”. You would make a good professor at a Bible Institute.

Again, Jason, can you do ANYTHING ORIGINAL? Do you ever think critically about the text using Form and Literary Criticisms?

Oh well, if you did, the you would definitely not be a Christadelphian, that’s for sure! But, then again, the Christadelphian doctrine seems to function on your level.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Harry, I know you're not aware of this until I say so, but I'm pretty allergic to making judgements based solely on appearances - I don't know this guy's intention if it's purely creative expression or for sensationalism or what, but I know a few tattooed and pierced people (with the current trend, it's hard NOT to!) who are real sweethearts. But it's okay by me if you have decided to buck the trends and don't have any.

But moving along about the meaning of words - I think the value and meaning of words come from a life that is fully lived and examined. If I weren't able to check out my own stuff in relationship to others and what I've witnessed and dealt with personally, then I couldn't really understand what Jesus's points were. I'm not saying I'm better than others - I'm saying that if one desires to know about this God Who promises to love in a Way that is divine, that is available. Jesus didn't promise "no suffering" but love worth suffering for.

At any rate - looking forward to more posts.

3M

DingoDave said...

If 'Jesus Barabbas' and 'Jesus called the Christ' were one and the same person, then Jesus would definitely have been an insurrectionist, because that is what the Bible tells us Jesus Barabbas had been arrested for.

As such, he would have been swiftly dealt with just as is described in the New Testament. The whole story about Pilate offering one of his political prisoners for release simply beggars the imagination. Pilate would never have done such a thing. In fact he was eventually recalled to Rome because it was considered that he had been behaving too harshly and too uncompromisingly with the Jews who were under his authority.

So Jason barely has a leg to stand on when he asserts that Jesus was killed by the Jews and that Pilate would have set Jesus free. There is absolutely no way that events could ever have happened the way the gospel writers claim they did.

DingoDave said...

HaHa, I just did a Google search for 'Christadelphian' and discovered that their founder was a guy named John Thomas.
In the UK and Australia, the name 'John Thomas' is a slang term for 'penis'.

I wonder whether his friends used to call him Dick? :D

Jason said...

Harry,

Simple minded or not, I'm only showing you who the Bible says wanted Jesus dead - it was the Jews, not Pilate.

Harry, you quote Scripture many times in your opening post to support your claims - I'm doing exactly the same to prove mine. Fair is fair. If you don't like it, stop referencing the Bible.

Mat 27:25 "Then answered all the people, and said, His blood be on us, and on our children."

Acts 3:13 "...hath glorified his Son Jesus; whom ye delivered up, and denied him in the presence of Pilate, when he was determined to let him go."

Acts 4:10 "Be it known unto you all, and to all the people of Israel, that by the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, whom ye crucified..."

You guys pick the oddest things to debate. Feel free to argue about it until you're blue in the face, it won't change the words that are written in the BIble. I'm sorry.

Harry McCall said...

Jason, Jesus made to conflicting statements (or what the legal system would term as a lie since Mark 14:34 ins just opposite to what he stated in John 18:20).

Either Jesus “ I have spoken openly to the world;” including the Americas and East Asia or, as you pointed out (Jesus spoke “openly to the world” in the same way his brothers asked Jesus to show himself "to the world" (John 7:4)), Jesus is simply a local “Messiah” whose “world” he came to save was the “world” of Palestine who has no relevance to me nor any one else today.

Jason, either Jesus is a liar in that he was simply a local messiah OR he was a world wide messiah…one is a flat out lie.

Put bluntly; Jesus is a damn liar! Now Jason, pleases “save” poor Jesus soul.

Jason said...

Harry,

I'll take that as an agreement that the Bible lays the blame for the crucifixion of Christ at the feet of the Jews.

Yes, Jesus spoke to the people within the confines of the land he was in. How or why are you correlating this with salvation?

Scott said...

I was taught that it was impossible to reach a rainbow's end, but after that day, we relegated the former teaching as an old wives' tale that, by our experience, was debunked for us.

Wow. That's a pretty liberal set of debunking requirements you have there.

So, I guess, reading about Jesus while waiting for my hair cut yesterday would have debunked atheism. Because, at the time, my priority was finding something to do, and "Jesus" would have "saved me" from boredom?

Certainly, the belief that God sent Jesus to die for us has "saved" people from their fears of death, asking hard questions, facing uncertainty, the need to find their own purpose in life, etc. The question is, at what cost?

The need to defend God when he doesn't make sense any more? Cognitive dissonance? A lack of intellectual honesty? A struggle to keep specific aspects of the world "opaque" as not to reveal God's absence?

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Harry, I suspect that One who has the power of resurrection and promises more mercy for the residents of Sodom and Gomorrah than those who portray divine power as arrogant and punishing towards humanity was pretty intent on reaching the entire world (and not in the limited terms that we imagine and practice).

Kjánalegur Einn!
3M

Harry McCall said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Scott wrote: "So, I guess, reading about Jesus while waiting for my hair cut yesterday would have debunked atheism. Because, at the time, my priority was finding something to do, and "Jesus" would have "saved me" from boredom?"

Scott, I confess, I don't understand your perspective of me - correct me if I'm wrong but I think you are insistent upon cataloging me as one who takes scripture without discernment and the Bible as "god" itself.

At any rate, another item you wrote was that you feel I have to defend God. Look Scott, I won't lie to you here - it is a common temptation to suffer from the confusion that one must defend God - I know I've done it before and experienced the pangs of hypocrisy and arrogance. But that is just plain backwards - Y'shua Himself when approached by weeping and grieving women watching Him go to the cross, said not to feel sorry for Him, but for themselves. I don't need to defend God - nor does He need defending. I do defend my faith, but not God. Faithfulness is about saving mankind, not God.

Talk at ya later, Scott!

3M

Harry McCall said...

JESUS and the DODO BIRD

Jason , as a now dead locale Jewish messiah, this Jesus is now totally useless and meaningless to any modern person and offers Jason has no more “salvation” than you have in having seen, killed and ate a long extinct Dodo bird. Both Jesus and the Dodo bird are relics of past history!

This is why prayers go unanswered and I can say what the hell I want to without any reprisals from Jesus as claimed in the Bible. Oh yes, Jesus will punish me the same way a now extinct Dodo bird will peck out my eyes.

Jason, will Jesus use Dodo birds to attack the un-saved in the after life?

Hey, bring it on Jesus (and get your lame ass old man’s (God) help too)! I’m sure you have a theological reason why nothing happens, just has your theology can explain why a Dodo bird has not yet pecked out my eyes. Oh, I get it now Jason, I’ve got to be dead! Then Jesus, the Dodo bird and I will all three will be extinct!

Jason said...

Harry, you're not making sense. I'll ask again: Jesus did speak to the people within the confines of the land he was in. How or why are you correlating this with salvation?

tigg13 said...

MMM said. "I do defend my faith, but not God. Faithfulness is about saving mankind, not God."

Ding! Ding! Ding! Ding! Ding!

We have a winner!

MMM has finally admitted that it is his/her faith, his/her personal, subjective interpretation of divinity that brings him/her to this site.

And not just that, but MMM has proposed that the fate of the world relies on MMM's faith. Not an actual, objectively absolute divine being, not the actual bible, not the actual jesus, but his/her unique version of god (this Y'shua person) that s/he (and perhaps only s/he) believes in.

Yet MMM seems to be pretty quick to judge others as arrogant and prideful.

(Or am I mis-interpreting what MMM meant to communicate? S/he never seems to mean what s/he writes.)

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Tigg - I know it's not uncommon to put the practice of waging accusations into action but honestly, I've already given myself up many times before here about such matters - BTW, you were negligent in including to my list of crimes manipulation, avarice, etc. (and don't forget hypocrisy) arrogance is but one of the more minor offenses I've committed.

And BTW, just curious - do you believe that a God should be defended by people?? I'm not so sure what kind of "god" that would be. At any rate, you really "caught" me red-handed here Trigg with all those sins of mine -

Thanks, as usual,
3M

Harry McCall said...

Jason: “How or why are you correlating this with salvation?”

An extinct liar (Jesus) is useless on any kind of salvation!

Harry McCall said...

Rafael, you are welcome to comment here at D.C., but after I allowed your comment to be posted I returned to the comment section and began to read it. It was a rambling 5,000 to 7,000 word comment on the creation of the earth in Genesis 1 -2 that was more of a prewritten sermon than a true comment related to this Post, so I deleted it.

Secondly, even if I allowed it to stay, at 5K - 7K words, no one is going to spend an hour reading it.

I would advise you to keep your comments short and stay with the topic. In the future, any extremely long rambling sermons will not make it out of the "Review of comments" section.

Regards,
Harry McCall

DingoDave said...

Dear MMM,
I just tried taking a look at your blog 'Minimizing Our Bodily Territory' in order to try to get a handle on where you're coming from. But it said that it was open to invited readers only???
What's the story with that?
Are you running some sort of secret society or something?

tigg13 said...

MMM, I cannot imagine a god that would need to be defended by anyone. And, from your posts, I am fairly certain you feel the same way.

But, if that's so, then what are you trying to defend?

Is it the world that you are trying to save from your all-loving Y'shua? Or is it your own personal, spiritual identity that you feel is being threatened by this web site?

Is it these cold, rational skeptics that you are trying to reach?

Or the undecided lurkers who read these posts yet don't comment themselves?

Or, perhaps, you yourself are not so certain that your faith is truly as strong as you'ld like it to be?

This is what Harry and Evan have alluded to; that it isn't God or Y'shua that you are trying to make us take seriously, its you.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Dingo, now why on earth did you have to go and expose my secret society? Darn it all anyway! Thanks for checking it out though anyway.

Jason said...

Harry,

You're not being forthcoming with an answer to the question. Jesus spoke to the people within the confines of the land he was in. How or why are you correlating this with salvation? In layman's terms, what is it about Jesus speaking within the geographic boundaries of Israel that makes him a liar regarding salvation for future generations?

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Hi again Tigg - as far as motivation is concerned, faith is an expression - it's a sharing of creative and loving expression. You have something to share as well. What is your motive? I defend what I know to be true as far as what is accurate in my own life and the way I've related to God and others and what I've learned to be true about the Way God loves. By faith, my way of defense is not the same as it was as a nonbeliever - what used to be seen as threatening is a chance to exercise and express faith now.

Also, Tigg, logically, if you review what I've written here, I don't think having myself being taken seriously is the exact goal, do you??

Thanks once again,
3M

Harry McCall said...

Jason, Jesus and his salvation are based on limited knowledge. The only world Jesus knew was flat and you could see it so Satan (as Jesus was a follower of Satan) could lead Jesus to a high mountain and show Jesus the ENTIRE world and ALL it riches(Matt. 4: 8-9).

Salvation ONLY went as for as Jesus could see (about 7 to 10 mile on a clear day).

This limited Jesus and his limit world are 2,000 year extinct.

Scott said...

M3,

My confusion rests in your apparent belief that everything else makes perfect sense once Jesus arrives on the scene.

Is Jesus the only true representation of God man has seen or did God make less successful attempts to reveal his true goals before sending his son? Where was God before Jesus showed up and promised to save us from this "bondage" we just happened to find ourselves in?

For example when did God decide enough was enough and send Jesus to clear up all our misconceptions? Because, I'm sure there were generations of people who rejected God and died before Jesus arrived and cleared everything up with his he new and improved message. What is their eternal fate?

God, being omniscient, would have realized his message would eventually need clarification. Yet he sat idol for millions of years while humans suffered in confusion before sending Jesus. What purpose did this serve? And what of the people like myself, who apparently still don't get it. Will God eventually decide Jesus' message just isn't getting enough traction again and make another attempt to clarify it?

At any rate, another item you wrote was that you feel I have to defend God.

I feel you need to keep God coherent so you can continue to think his teachings are "true". If I point out how contrived God's need to save us is, you respond by creating false dichotomies and limiting God. You're not defending God, you're defending his "need" to be involved in everyone's life, including your own, despite his supernatural ability to save us from our situation.

In other words, is God actually a omnipotent, omniscient supernatural being or simply the realization and actualization of the compassionate nature that exists in each and every one of us? The way you limit God, it appears you believe the latter, not the former.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Hi again, Scott! I'm learning that God doesn't rescue the same way as I would - and that is good news indeed - I still get stuck with the fight or flight choices sometimes. I appreciate your concern - at least it seems that way when I read your comments.

God resurrects people (I believe that because of what I know to be true for myself in relationship to God) and has already promised mercy for those inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah and Jezebel too - He doesn't judge as people often do in such a condemning and damning way. Does this bother you?? He isn't condemning people for not being able to understand Him fully or getting infected with pride and hatred, etc. etc. - He already knows that we suffer due to our lack of faith but He doesn't want to enable us in our suffering either. He offers a way out but some people mature a desire and prefer punishment and extracting life from others when they've been hurt rather than seeking reconciliation.

It seems to me like you and others here are very caring people or otherwise you wouldn't be thinking in terms of the Outsider test or about slavery etc. etc. But the truth is, slavery and outsider issues are an expression of the pride virus and not God - we are not condemned by God for that - but people condemn one another. Scott, with God, (and I mean this wholeheartedly) do not be concerned about who would be condemned to hell, but who you would be next to in heaven (which, BTW, is available on earth just as it says in the Lord's Prayer). Believers are known by the way they love one another not by their theological, philosophical or historical knowledge.

At any rate, the best to you, Scott! I admire your perseverence in conversing with me - I'm not very good at expressing God's love here.

3M

Jason said...

Harry,

"Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved..." (Mark 16:16). I don't see anything here that restricts belief, baptism or salvation to only people within the confines of Christ's world 2000 years ago, do you?

Harry McCall said...

3 MAJOR problems here Jason that you seem consistently ignore:

A. Jesus was talking to whom; just he eleven apostles! (Not you nor I…no one in the future)

B. Jesus only told THEM ONLY to “Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.” (Mark 16: 15). καὶ εἶπεν αὐτοῖς (and he (Jesus) said (past tense) to them: πορευθέντες εἰς τὸν κόσμον ἅπαντα You (the Apostles) go into the whole world. Honestly Jason, exactly how you warp a clear statement given to 11 people 2,000 years ago and apply it to people today is beyond me. Can you exegete the Greek? Did I miss this clear and straight forward reading?

C. The Greek of Mark 16: 16 is “Past Perfect“. This is perfect action totally completed in the PAST / i.e. 2000 years ago. Again, Jason the word is PAST as in EXTINCT.

Based on the facts as stated in the Gospel of Mark, the message was limit to a SET time, a set number of 11 people and a set geographical location that is now null and void!

Once I strip the false modern Christian theology which wraps this statement into the present, Jason and the rest of miss-informed want-to-be Apostles or “Christians” are flopping around in reality like a fish out of water.

Well Jason, it is time to quote St. Paul to save your presen day theology (As Jesus sure the hell can‘t)!

Jason said...

Harry,

You're making this far, far too complicated. It's Occam's razor. Jesus tells his disciples that anyone who believes the gospel and is baptised will be saved. Since then, the gospel has been spread throughout the world via Scripture. People are believing and people are being baptised all in accordance with the words of Christ.

"But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name." (John 20:31)

Then in the revelation given to John, Jesus favourably mentions Christian churches that didn't even exist during his ministry. This clearly indicates salvation is offered to anyone, anywhere, in any time period.

The problem with your argument is that Jesus never taught the concept that the only people who would be saved were those who believed and were baptised within his lifetime and within the boundaries he set out. This is so ridiculous and baseless, it barely deserves the energy it took to write this sentence.

Harry McCall said...

“disciples that anyone who believes the gospel and is baptised will be”

Nice try Jason, but the Greek is masculine as were the eleven apostles. The word is “HE” and NOT “anyone“. Watch your simplistic translations.

“But these are written, that ye might believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God; and that believing ye might have life through his name." (John 20:31) Sorry Jason, this is NOT Jesus talking, but whoever wrote the Fourth Gospel (the latest one / last to be written) to try and convince local people that Jesus was not dead. Just as a TV commercial is “written that you might believe” the Ford Ranger is the best pickup truck evr built.
An ancient religious commercial propaganda!

Jason: “Then in the revelation given to John, Jesus favourably mentions Christian churches that didn't even exist during his ministry. This clearly indicates salvation is offered to anyone, anywhere, in any time period.”

Wrong big time Jason. I did a post on this verse which proved this was placed on the lips of Jesus to give it authority. “If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, let him be to you as a Gentile and a tax collector.”
So if Jesus really said this, then why, Jason, did this same Jesus NOT KNOW that Gentiles would come into the church based on decision the Jerusalem Council in Acts 15?! So Jesus predicts
the Church, but not Paul’s mission to the gentiles! Great thinking Jason. I debated a Bob Jones University theology professor on this verse an he lost.

“The problem with your argument is that Jesus never taught the concept that the only people who would be saved were those who believed and were baptised within his lifetime and within the boundaries he set out. This is so ridiculous and baseless, it barely deserves the energy it took to write this sentence.”

Jason quote the rest of Mark and you’ll see this proves it is in the past. Many so called modern “Christians” have died have doing this today: "These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover." (Mark 16: 17-18)

So far Jason you’ve struck out twice. Get ready, Jason will swing at the birds again! Batter UP! More reasons, Jason.

DingoDave said...

MMM wrote:

-"God... has already promised mercy for those inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah and Jezebel too - He doesn't judge as people often do in such a condemning and damning way."

MMM you have some very bizarre ideas. According to the Bible, the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah are frying in Hell as we speak, and will continue to do so forever.

Jude 1
[6] And the angels that did not keep their own position but left their proper dwelling have been kept by him in eternal chains in the nether gloom until the judgment of the great day;
[7] just as Sodom and Gomor'rah and the surrounding cities, which likewise acted immorally and indulged in unnatural lust, serve as an example by undergoing a punishment of eternal fire.

And what IS the deal with your secret blog, which is only accessible to invited readers? You never did answer my question.
From what I've observed so far, you rarely seem to give a straight answer to ANY of the questions which are put to you, and I'm afraid that I can rarely make sense out of anything you write.
You come across as being a full on space cadet. Am I misjudging you, or is it true that you really are some kind of 'new age' crackpot?
Or as we might say here in Australia, "one can short of a sixpack", :-)

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

DD wrote: "MMM you have some very bizarre ideas. According to the Bible, the inhabitants of Sodom and Gomorrah are frying in Hell as we speak, and will continue to do so forever."

"According to the Bible" - that phrase represents a pretty sweeping generality, DD! In fact, it is the writer of Jude who is rebuking his audience (this, in light of the revelation of God's grace through Jesus). One of the hazards in taking scripture literally, is to ignore the progression and maturation of faith that is ongoing in the writings of the Apostles. Although, I sincerely doubt those who cling to the notion of violent and murderous expressions of lust in relationship to others will find heaven to be a very appealing eternal residence since that is not tolerated there. Jesus does offer mercy for the residents of Sodom and Gomorrha and He also offers grace to Jezebel - a pretty humbling thought if one considers taking these characters out of text and envisioning the reality of what they did.

Then you wrote,"And what IS the deal with your secret blog, which is only accessible to invited readers? You never did answer my question." DD, I seriously didn't realize that my having a personal blog is such a distraction to you - my sincere and utmost apology! I'll tell you just as I told Harry when he asked me about it before - it's a weight loss blog. BTW, I only have a few pounds left to go...I'm doing great! Do you want to join??

Then you wrote, "From what I've observed so far, you rarely seem to give a straight answer to ANY of the questions which are put to you, and I'm afraid that I can rarely make sense out of anything you write." Okay, how about this DD - John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only son.

"You come across as being a full on space cadet. Am I misjudging you, or is it true that you really are some kind of 'new age' crackpot?" Okay. DD, if you feel like I'm a crackpot, especially a New Age one, then you are definitely entitled to your opinion - I have no intention of keeping you from entertaining such thoughts.

As far as being short a six pack, I plan on downing one after this conversation. So, DD, hopefully by the end of this evening, I truly do intend to be short a six pack!

Sincerely,
Your visionary new age crackpot with secret metaphysical weight loss formulas,
3M

Jason said...

Harry, what’re you doing? I can’t believe you’re arguing this. Jesus was telling his disciples to go into the world and preach the gospel to “everyone”. Thus, he that believes and is baptized will be saved, he that doesn’t, won’t. This is about as simple and logical as it gets.

Sorry Jason, this is NOT Jesus talking, but whoever wrote the Fourth Gospel (the latest one / last to be written) to try and convince local people that Jesus was not dead. Just as a TV commercial is “written that you might believe” the Ford Ranger is the best pickup truck evr built.

This is a lame and utterly useless argument, Harry. I expected something a little more intelligent from you instead of a callous disregard of a verse that blatantly refutes your argument. John 20:31 states that what was written was written so that people can believe in Jesus. This message doesn’t mention a salvation shelf life nor geographic limits.

So if Jesus really said this, then why, Jason, did this same Jesus NOT KNOW that Gentiles would come into the church based on decision the Jerusalem Council in Acts 15?! So Jesus predicts the Church, but not Paul’s mission to the gentiles! Great thinking Jason.

Harry, Jesus spoke the words in Revelation. And in it, he refers to churches that didn’t exist at the time of his ministry. This tells us that the gift of salvation was extended, and being extended to people outside of Israel, in any time period. It’s as simple as that.

Jason quote the rest of Mark and you’ll see this proves it is in the past. Many so called modern “Christians” have died have doing this today: "These signs will accompany those who have believed: in My name they will cast out demons, they will speak with new tongues; they will pick up serpents, and if they drink any deadly poison, it will not hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover." (Mark 16: 17-18)

Harry, the tense of Mark is irrelevant. The fact is you haven’t given any evidence proving Christ explicitly taught the people that salvation would be offered to only those within his lifetime and only those within the boundaries he set out. It’s not a teaching held by any of the disciples, apostles or early Christian followers. You have the full weight of Christian history against you on this one.

Scott said...

M3,

Color me still confused. Regardless of how God rescues us, you still haven't addressed the question of how we came to need rescue in the first place.

Does your lack of response to what I think were clear and relevant questions indicate you don't think how we got here really matters? Was God not involved?

I'm learning that God doesn't rescue the same way as I would - and that is good news indeed - I still get stuck with the fight or flight choices sometimes. I appreciate your concern - at least it seems that way when I read your comments.

When you say "God doesn't rescue the same way as I would", does this also imply that God didn't create us the way that orthodox Christianity claims he did? I'm simply trying to make a coherent picture of what you believe.

He doesn't judge as people often do in such a condemning and damning way. Does this bother you??

I'm trying to identify that which is necessary which God want's us to have, but is powerless to give us. This is the question which I can't seem to get answered. Instead, I get answers that appear to be contrived given God's nature.

Scott, with God, (and I mean this wholeheartedly) do not be concerned about who would be condemned to hell, but who you would be next to in heaven

Either God is a necessary part of reaching "heaven" or he is not. Which is it? If he is necessary, then concern must include God and all he entails.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Hi again Scott - So you are wondering how we got to where we needed rescue? I think the story of Adam and Eve falling prey to temptation to gain divine knowledge while bypassing God's advice is a good enough reason, but since you don't believe in God perhaps a better way to approach this is through the parable of those who cleaned their homes of demons and once swept clean and in order, the demons, finding no place to rest, returned and brought many more along with them to reside there. In other words, I can be moral and seek morality without God - but if morality is the ultimate goal rather than a loving relationship with a gracious God, then I am prone to falling even further than ever into the sins of pride, territorialism, legalism and self righteousness which really stifle creative and loving expression and create a marginalized population of all kinds of people that can't meet all the conditions for acceptance.

Take care, Scott!

3M

Harry McCall said...

“Jesus was telling his disciples to go into the world and preach the gospel to “everyone”. Thus, he that believes and is baptized will be saved, he that doesn’t, won’t. This is about as simple and logical as it gets.”

Jason, as I stated before, this is ALL in the PAST TENSE to 11 now dead disciples; Jesus in now dead and all the people the 11 preached to are now dead. The past in gone forever! So is the original salvation that was offered.

This world was the past Hellenistic Greek world of the Forth Gospel. The “Gospel” was written in “Koine”/ common ancient Greek and the Gospel was preached in common Greek. The language is now dead as are Jesus and the 11 disciples.

“Jesus spoke the words in Revelation. And in it, he refers to churches that didn’t exist at the time of his ministry. This tells us that the gift of salvation was extended, and being extended to people outside of Israel, in any time period. It’s as simple as that.”

Wake up Jason; Jesus spoke NOTHING in the Book of Revelation. NOTHING in this book has EVER happened. It’s a mythical ideal eschatological play much like a science fiction story…it never happened and Jesus NEVER spoke anything in the entire book! Plus, Revelation was not included in the Christian Canon until very end / last and Martin Luther threw it out. Read any book on the canonization of the New Testament and look at the facts.

“Harry, the tense of Mark is irrelevant. The fact is you haven’t given any evidence proving Christ explicitly taught the people that salvation would be offered to only those within his lifetime and only those within the boundaries he set out. It’s not a teaching held by any of the disciples, apostles or early Christian followers. You have the full weight of Christian history against you on this one.”

Lets see:

A. Words spoken by Jesus dealing with salvation are in the past tense to past/dead persons.

B. To 11 are now now 2,000 years dead apostles.

C. Jesus, as a Jew, address only Jews and NEVER gentiles as the Jews ONLY are God’s chosen people (It was Paul’s idea ALONE to go to the gentiles, Paul‘s theology alone is the modern Christian’s salvation). Peter was with Jesus and bitterly opposed Paul offering salvation to the Greeks! The 12 knew it was over and (other than Peter who drops out of sight after Acts 14) and leave no mark in carrying on this Jewish work of salvation other than in false legends.

D. While many ancient philosophers traveled hundreds of mile to many countries to teach their philosophical theories, Jesus stay within Zion to preach only to the Jews alone.

Jason, if you want to claim Paul as your gentile savior, I have no problem with that, but you and the rest of modern Christendom are living a delusion thinking that Paul’s “Christ” is the gospel’s Jesus. Paul never saw or heard Jesus teach and his “conversion” in Acts (even Acts tells it 3 different ways) does not match his own story in his letters.

Strike 3! You are out!

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Harry wrote, "Wake up Jason; Jesus spoke NOTHING in the Book of Revelation. NOTHING in this book has EVER happened. It’s a mythical ideal eschatological play much like a science fiction story…it never happened and Jesus NEVER spoke anything in the entire book!"

Harry, I don't know if you're aware of this, but the Catholic perspective of Revelation is one of a story detailing the pattern of spiritual awakening which occurs throughout the history of mankind - the more fundamentalist approach is that of a one-time culminating event. Then again, some say that this details an exact historical time during the reign of Nero. I say it is a combination of all these views - it is a story that details the pattern of spiritual awakening that occurs throughout the history of mankind, (which would certainly include the period during Nero's rule) but it is also a story of progressive events that lead to a culminating event. Where did you get the notion that the words addressing the 7 churches were not divine??

DingoDave said...

Dear MMM, Thank you for your reply.

You wrote:

-"According to the Bible" - that phrase represents a pretty sweeping generality, DD!"

The phrase is written in the Bible isn't it? Therefore, why am I not entitled to use the phrase 'According to the Bible'...?

-"DD! In fact, it is the writer of Jude who is rebuking his audience (this, in light of the revelation of God's grace through Jesus)."

How do you manage to pull that interpretation out of that particular passage? How does burning for an eternity in a lake of fire square with the idea of forgiveness and mercy?
Or am I missing something?

-"One of the hazards in taking scripture literally, is to ignore the progression and maturation of faith that is ongoing in the writings of the Apostles."

Are you suggesting that the earlier Bible authors were wrong about what they wrote? Do you follow the Islamic notion of the 'abrogation of scripture'? (i.e. What was written later, cancels out what was written earlier). According to this concept, it is claimed that numerous verses in the Quran have actually been abrogated and invalidated by other verses.

-"Jesus does offer mercy for the residents of Sodom and Gomorrha and He also offers grace to Jezebel"

Where did you get that idea from?

-"DD, I seriously didn't realize that my having a personal blog is such a distraction to you - my sincere and utmost apology!"

If you don't want to be asked the question, then don't advertise your private blog in a public forum.

-"It's a weight loss blog. Do you want to join??"

Now that you mention it, I COULD do with losing a few pounds! : )

-"Okay, how about this DD - John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only son."

But according to the Old Testament, Yahweh has many sons. Or are the verses which mention Yahweh's many sons just more of those 'abrogated' passages?

-"Okay. DD, if you feel like I'm a crackpot, especially a New Age one, then you are definitely entitled to your opinion"

I was asking you a question, not stating an opinion. And whether you realise it or not, many of your comments definitely come across as having a 'new age' flavour to them.

I live on the 'North Coast' of New South Wales in Australia, which is renowned for being the hub of the Australian 'new age' hippie culture. If I have mis-judged you, then please accept my apologies.

-"So, DD, hopefully by the end of this evening, I truly do intend to be short a six pack!"

I'll drink to that! : D (but the expression is 'one can short of a sixpack', as in 'one sandwich short of a picnic') : )

Anyway; Peace and good luck to you.

Jason said...

Harry,

Whether or not it was in the past is irrelevant for this topic. You said Jesus offered salvation only to those that lived within his lifetime and geographic region yet Jesus told his disciples to go into the world and preach to everyone. Your theory holds no water in light of this. Neither the disciples, nor the apostles, nor the early church believed, or taught, that Christ’s message of salvation was limited to a specific region of the world. This is a theory you hold on your own and isn’t supported in Scripture.

The first few verses of Revelation tell us that it was Christ who imparted the revelation to John. Considering Christ mentions Christian churches that didn’t exist at the time of his ministry means Jesus fully expected the preaching of the gospel and the emergence of organized groups of his followers to develop and continue after his death. Ergo, your theory that Christ’s salvation was limited is incorrect as explicitly seen by only a cursory examination of the NT.

A. The words spoken by Christ dealing with salvation are in the past tense because Jesus lived in the past. However, there’s nothing in his actual message of salvation that limits it to the extent you claim it does, nor can this idea be found throughout the remainder of the NT. Sorry.

B. Jesus instructed his eleven disciples to preach and baptize, correct. Where does Christ explain that the ability to preach the gospel would start and end with them?

C. Jesus taught salvation for mankind, not just for Jews. And Paul was sent to preach to the Gentiles with the express (written) consent of the apostles, the elders and the ‘whole’ church (Acts 15:25). This doesn’t make sense if they knew the message of salvation wasn’t supposed to be preached any longer now that Christ had died. And FYI, Peter calls Paul his “beloved brother” and states God gave him "wisdom" (2 Peter 3:15).

D. Jesus preached to the Samaritans and Romans alike, it wasn’t only Jews. Before you make these kinds of claims, having a basic knowledge of the life of Christ certainly helps.

Sorry Harry, there’s no evidence whatsoever that proves Jesus’ message of salvation had time and location restrictions. It’s an idea that Scripture doesn’t support in any way, shape, or form and it’s not a teaching held by any of the disciples, apostles or early Christian followers. You have the full weight of Christian history against you on this one.

Harry McCall said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jason said...

Harry,

This is one of your strangest arguments yet. Why you decided to choose the concept of limited salvation is a real head scratcher considering the evidence is so overwhelmingly against you. The gift of salvation was extended to anyone who “believes and is baptized”. Christ never told his disciples to avoid preaching or baptizing any non-Jew which is why precisely the disciples, like Philip baptized non-Jews (Acts 8:38). It’s a no brainer.

The promise of salvation was originally taught to the Jews by Christ, of that there is no doubt. But, because the Jews rejected Christ “The kingdom of God shall be taken from you, and given to a nation bringing forth the fruits thereof.” (Mat 21:43) Again, it’s a no brainer.

Regarding Revelation, as the verses you quoted quite clearly show, God gave Jesus a revelation concerning “things which were to come to pass”. You must have skipped over that part. Since Christian churches are mentioned, Jesus, and God, knew, and accepted, that the gospel would continue to be preached after Jesus had died and that there would be an emergence of righteous followers to whom the promise of salvation would be extended.

Finally, you can go on and on about your hate-on for Paul but it’s all really quite irrelevant. The simple fact is your argument that Christ taught a limited salvation is baseless and contradicts the teachings of Scripture regarding to whom God extends the gift of salvation.

There is no NT teaching that states salvation is now an impossibility since it was only extended to those during Christ’s lifetime. Considering all your past theories, I don’t believe you’ve ever been further from the truth then with this one. I look forward to the next one.

And I've just noticed your comment I was responding to has been removed. Something wrong, Harry?

Harry McCall said...

Jason: “Whether or not it was in the past is irrelevant for this topic. You said Jesus offered salvation only to those that lived within his lifetime and geographic region yet Jesus told his disciples to go into the world and preach to everyone. Your theory holds no water in light of this. Neither the disciples, nor the apostles, nor the early church believed, or taught, that Christ’s message of salvation was limited to a specific region of the world. This is a theory you hold on your own and isn’t supported in Scripture.”

Re: Listen Jason, No ONE but the Jews needed salvation since Yahweh was THEIR God ONLY who created their religious laws (to Moses On Sinai )and Jesus was a Jewish rabbi who taught the Jewish Torah. The whole concept of atonement for sins has no bases outside the Hebrew Bible. Neither yo nor I or any modern Christian is a Jew of the past.

Other than some watered down modern Christian beliefs an phony evangelist, no modern Christian can walk on water, heal the sick by laying on of hands, raise the dead an so on. You have a counterfeit faith base on Paul. You are a indeed simply a “Pauladelphian”.

Jesus said he came “ONLY to the lost sheep of the house of Israel” (“These twelve Jesus sent out after instructing them: "Do not go in the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter any city of the Samaritans; but rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Matt10: 5-6).

Jason: “The first few verses of Revelation tell us that it was Christ who imparted the revelation to John. Considering Christ mentions Christian churches that didn’t exist at the time of his ministry means Jesus fully expected the preaching of the gospel and the emergence of organized groups of his followers to develop and continue after his death. Ergo, your theory that Christ’s salvation was limited is incorrect as explicitly seen by only a cursory examination of the NT.”

Re: Counter to this Jason: “This is the revelation of Jesus the Messiah, which God gave him to show his servants the things that must happen soon. He made it known by sending his messenger to his servant John” Rev. 1:1.

You missed two major things here: Who it was given to: “his servants” that is the servants then living in the year 90 C.E. and the fact it done and gone since it “must SOON happen” and 2,000 years ago is NOT “SOON“! Jason, it’s over, boy…you missed the boat! Although, I not a “Peterist” on prophecy fulfillment in the past, they see my points too!

Jason : “The words spoken by Christ dealing with salvation are in the past tense because Jesus lived in the past. However, there’s nothing in his actual message of salvation that limits it to the extent you claim it does, nor can this idea be found throughout the remainder of the NT. Sorry.”

Re: Only in the Pauline corpus is salvation open to the world. Only in Paul and the pseudo-Pauline letters I salvation opened. Quite deceiving yourself Jason, since you or any Christian today can NOT work, not only the works of Jesus, but as he promised “Greater works shall ye do, because I go to the Father” John 14 :12 ( Most certainly I tell you, he who believes in me, the works that I do, he will do also; and he will do greater works than these, because I am going to my Father.) This is empirical proof based on Jesus very words that it over Jason, gone forever!

Problem is Jason God has sent you and all other modern Christians a “Strong Delusion” that you might be deceived. ( And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: 2 Thess. 2:11) Jason, all your are is a totally deceived so called “Christian” want-to-be! You conversion was base on emotionalism, and not you intellect!


Jason: “Jesus instructed his eleven disciples to preach and baptize, correct. Where does Christ explain that the ability to preach the gospel would start and end with them?’

Re: After his death, the Jewish apostles who Jesus (as noted above Matt 10 :5-6) walked off their preaching jobs when Jesus was killed. Please Quit confusing Paul self appointed mission with what Jesus gave his Jewish follower who preached to only Jew.


Jason: “Jesus taught salvation for mankind, not just for Jews. And Paul was sent to preach to the Gentiles with the express (written) consent of the apostles, the elders and the ‘whole’ church (Acts 15:25). This doesn’t make sense if they knew the message of salvation wasn’t supposed to be preached any longer now that Christ had died. And FYI, Peter calls Paul his “beloved brother” and states God gave him "wisdom" (2 Peter 3:15).”

Re: “Jesus taught salvation for mankind, not just for Jews” and where did you get that verse from????????, wishful thinking? Either quote Jesus or Paul, but please don’t mix the two up and make a liberal theology.

Jesus (please don’t use the Pauline term “Christ” here in Acts 15 unless you note it’s as used in Acts 15 in relation to Paul. Paul’s’ totally ministry was built on the now past ideals of a dead Jewish Jesus whom Paul NEVER saw of heard preach!

Jason: “And FYI, Peter calls Paul his “beloved brother” and states God gave him "wisdom" (2 Peter 3:15).”

Re: Educated yourself here! 2 Peter was NOT written by the apostle Peter. Check it out in any good Bible reference work. So your proof text is totally meaningless!

Jason: “Jesus preached to the Samaritans and Romans alike, it wasn’t only Jews. Before you make these kinds of claims, having a basic knowledge of the life of Christ certainly helps.”

Re: What small amount of “spill over” preach do to Samaritans (Notice with the women at the well, Jesus made clear who salvation was for : “Our fathers worshiped in this mountain, and you people say that in Jerusalem is the place where men ought to worship…You worship what you do not know; we worship what we know, for salvation is from the Jews. John 4:20 & 22). A for a Roman gentiles are concerned, there are labeled “dogs” and “swine”! (“Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you. Matt. 11:6) This is stated in regards to gentiles Romans for his disciples to avoid, which they did.

Jason; “Sorry Harry, there’s no evidence whatsoever that proves Jesus’ message of salvation had time and location restrictions. It’s an idea that Scripture doesn’t support in any way, shape, or form and it’s not a teaching held by any of the disciples, apostles or early Christian followers. You have the full weight of Christian history against you on this one.”

Re: Jason you are just one of many deceived want-a-be “Christians”. From the way you try and proof text all your claims, you are also a very confused “Pauladephian” also at trying to read Paul’s theology back into Jesus nad the Gospels.

Jason: “You have the full weight of Christian history against you on this one.”

Re: I’ll close with this about the false doctrine of Christianity as it is taught today.

Jesus said (concerning Jason and all modern pseudo Christians today):
“Enter in by the narrow gate; for wide is the gate and broad is the way that leads to destruction, and many are those who enter in by it.” Sure present day Christian doctrine is based on the false teachings of man in his need to be a saved good boy. Jesus has already condemned all pseudo Christians today.

Jason, you struck out 3 times already and I gave you a fourth pitch. You gave it your best, but since your best is not good enough you still missed.

I consider this game now over: Harry 4, Jason 0. I’ll not responded again. Pick up your gear, clean up and go home. My next post will be another day for you to try and hit the ball again!

Harry McCall said...

Jason, let me know when you can walk on water and raise the dead as Jesus promised his TRUE apostles (and not a false want-a-be Chrsitian such as yourself)!

Until then you are simply a "false Christian" sent out in the world to decieve and your blog site sure does a good number here!

You've got NO power to work wonders, just the illogical or distorted mental theology which you peddle everywhere.

"Get behind me Satan!"

Catch you on my next post.

Scott said...

I think the story of Adam and Eve falling prey to temptation to gain divine knowledge while bypassing God's advice is a good enough reason...

I'm asking you to take a step back here and question why God would intend to create one thing, yet get something that he did not want: beings who bypass his advice. Because, you seem to imply God doesn't want us to bypass his advice, but we do it anyway.

Doesn't this seem like an ad-hoc explanation for what we observe humans doing? I mean, does this really make sense to you or are you merely rationalizing a reason for God's role as a plot device and "savior" in our lives?

Nor do I see any difference in your description of our current situation and Adam's situation: we both bypass God's love/advice/presence. As such, it appears the reason we need rescue goes back further than Adam's falling prey to temptation as we both suffer from the exact same "problem." Adam was just the first to exhibit the symptoms.

Where did the source of these symptoms come from? Do you believe God created everything from nothing or was the source inherited from something or someone else beyond Gods control?

but since you don't believe in God perhaps a better way to approach this is through the parable of those who cleaned their homes of demons and once swept clean and in order, the demons, finding no place to rest, returned and brought many more along with them to reside there.

Why would I believe in the existence of demons if I do not believe in God? They are simply the other side of the same supernatural coin. Since I don't really think you're implying I'm a devil worshiper, I'm still confused by our response.

However, if by 'demons' you're using a metaphor for aspects of the human condition, then I'd say there is observable experiences which would support this parable. But to assume that there are actually independent, supernatural agents which haunt us and, when displaced, become restless and return with more supernatural agents, is clearly unsubstantiated. Nor do we need to present aspects of the human condition as metaphors as it can result in confusion of the true subject with it's fictional cast and characters. We simply do not live in that world any more.

So, I guess I'm still confused. Do you think God really does God exist or is he just a metaphor?

It's as if your position on God and Jesus is similar to quantum mechanics. When you're looking for God to save you, he becomes Jesus, who actually exists and is powerful enough to rescue us from our current situation. But when it comes to explaining the supernatural creation of everything from nothing, which must have ultimately resulted in our current predicament, God exists in some completely different form that is limited and helpless to prevent us from needing rescue in the first place.

It's this dualistic view of God/Jesus which I find most confusing.

So, I'll ask again..

Is Jesus is our first "true" attempt at divine communication (the OT God merely a human invention) or did God decide to send Jesus after his initial attempts to express his true plan and nature failed to get sufficient traction?

If the latter, wouldn't God, being omniscient, have realized his initial attempt would have been insufficient and simply sent Jesus in the first place? How does God know Jesus' message is sufficient when, according to you, there are clearly billions of people, including Christians, who apparently still don't understand it correctly.

In either case, why was it necessity for God to wait millions of years to reveal his true nature to through Jesus? What possible purpose could it serve?

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Hi Scott! From your response, I feel as though your perspective is one that does not allow for something other than an "either/or" conclusion.

I'll never be able to reduce God to a palpable meal that will gratify demands because that isn't the intended goal - it's surrender that brought me enlightenment of a God Who could be trusted with my revealed self. Nonetheless, I'd like to address a few of your queries: one of which is about the perspectives about demons. To me, a demon is a destructive belief system that is put into practice in a person's lifestyle. I don't envision any animated or cartoon characters, but instead a disembodied, fear-based belief that people can get influenced by or infected with that causes them to mistreat themselves or others. Does that make sense? Let me know.

You wrote: "It's as if your position on God and Jesus is similar to quantum mechanics. When you're looking for God to save you, he becomes Jesus, who actually exists and is powerful enough to rescue us from our current situation. But when it comes to explaining the supernatural creation of everything from nothing, which must have ultimately resulted in our current predicament, God exists in some completely different form that is limited and helpless to prevent us from needing rescue in the first place."

God's existence and expression is manifested in various levels and infinite ways not just the finite but spiritual, emotional, mental physical. The timing and expression of His Way is from His vantage point. I am learning to trust in His timing and His expression and not make demands of Him from my own perspective. I'm learning that what appears to be a variable in God's personality is our interpretation of Him - even when He shows Himself to us in a human form, there are various responses. But He allows grace for that - we, instead are tempted to punish each other for our differences.

As far as why would God create something that would reject Him - if God did not allow me the grace and liberty to grow and progress according to my preferences, I doubt that I would ever grow to prefer Him. there's a scripture that denotes the kind of "father" that demands clones of himself - it's the one that talks about the children in the marketplace crying out to each other - we played a dirge for you and you do not weep, etc. etc. - in other words, a god that decides apart from us what he wants us to do and then punishes us for not being able to do it. I believe there is a very unloving and antagonistic influence that infects people in this way.

Anyway, as always, 3M

Scott said...

Okay, how about this DD - John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only son.

M3, what about this?

For God so loved the world than he prevented the very situation that would have required sending his son in the first place.

Wouldn't this God be more loving, as he would have foreseen our need and proactively responded to it?

But, wait. This doesn't make for very moving story, does it? Nor does it provide a role for God to play as a plot device or to fulfill our craving to be 'saved' from our current existence.

Taking responsibility for our own lives, futures and happiness is just too much for us limited human beings to handle.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Hi Scott! You wrote, "Taking responsibility for our own lives, futures and happiness is just too much for us limited human beings to handle."

You know, by faith I am learning to take hold of my own life - not the one that was disfigured and corrupted by influences that didn't care for me.

BTW, Scott, speaking of grace, the blog gods have been pretty kind not to boot these conversations. I personally am trying to repent and stay on topic as this trailing off is a weakness of mine, so how about if we agree to disagree here and meet up again on another discussion? Ciao! 3M P.S. One more thing - you mentioned quantum physics - I don't think God is threatened by our math and science studies, but I doubt He's overly impressed either. At any rate, lots of fun! 3M

Scott said...

I'll never be able to reduce God to a palpable meal that will gratify demands because that isn't the intended goal

And here is the crux of the issue.

I make no demands of God. Because I see nothing that would demand God's involvement. The very definition of God, as I see it, implies he would be immune from them.

But you make demands of God by insisting he has properties that make him indispensable and our suffering unavoidable, while at the same time implying that God created everything from nothing with some divine plan and can ultimately save us from ourselves / our situation / etc.

Do you see the conflict here?

When I put no demands, requirements or limitations on God, he becomes a zero sum. There is no reason for him to need or do anything. Why would a limitless, infinitely wise being want anything outside of himself? As they say in the acting business, "what is his motivation?"

But you say God, on one hand, is not nature, but he has a nature. His Way is not our way, but he can be understood if we see him as a "father" who want's us to choose him. Are these not demands?

You demand a God who is motivated to need and want things. But not just anything - God has a detailed, elaborate plan which he just happened to have revealed to an ancient, superstitious civilization, who really didn't have a clue as to how the universe they lived in really worked, over 2,000 years ago. And, of course, you demand there must be some good reason why we haven't heard a peep from him since.

You demand a God that is all powerful, but cannot reveal himself to us. A God who want's things but is helpless to attain them. A God who must essentially throw us in the water to teach us to swim and sit helpless if we fail to tread water.

In other words, you demand God that is limited enough to validate your beliefs, but powerful enough fulfill your needs.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Scott - I'll try and respond and keep in the topic of this post - mythic past and present day reality.

BTW, why do people view those as the two choices to pick between? Have you ever wondered about that? Why don't you question that? For myself, I learned that dissonance resulted because the truth of the reality was not safe to confess.

Your perspective of what I wrote causes me a bit of grief as I have failed to convey my own personal feelings and experience - you have misunderstood what I have written - I am beginning to appreciate and understand how God and the words written in scripture are conformed to personal paradigms - but only one lacks pride - that of Jesus.

You wrote: "There is no reason for him to need or do anything. Why would a limitless, infinitely wise being want anything outside of himself? As they say in the acting business, "what is his motivation?"

You require a reason for desire - but desire is what it is - I know that it's possible to approach such with scrutiny and cynicism. God is expressive and innocent of ulterior motive. He wants to share with us out of innocent but powerful love. The one thief on the cross next to Jesus got it right - Jesus is innocent, but also empowered (in a way that confuses pride). His creativity is expressed in various ways. I think the issue at hand is this: is it possible to create something that would reject its creator? Yes, I believe so - I have a teenage daughter. :-) (smiley face in case DingoDave is still with this thread). Yet, in an attempt to keep with the topic, my love for her is not a myth - it is a fact. Could God foresee His own rejection? That I'm not sure of nor do I need to be because what matters is that He remained loving when it occurred. I know this to be true, not mythological, in my own life.

Okey dokey Scott - Bye!
3M

Jason said...

Harry,

Your unwillingness to provide logical, intelligent Biblical evidence to support your theory is awfully telling. When presented with counter evidence, you choose instead to completely ignore it and rely on off colour remarks and red herrings in weak attempts to change the topic. Sorry friend but it's not working. Jesus didn't teach a time-specific or geographic-specific salvation.

All in all, yours has been an intellectually dishonest representation of Biblical teachings on the matter and is telling of the lengths Bible critics will go to to discredit the word of God.

Harry McCall said...

One more time if it can sink in to your thick skull Jason, let me know when you can walk on water and raise the dead as Jesus promised his TRUE apostles could do (and not a false want-a-be Chrsitian such as yourself)!

When you can do "signs and wonders" then you will have something to back up your empty dogmas.

Jason said...

Harry,

It's not my empty dogma on trial here. You made a claim about salvation that has since been shown to be wrong. It is what it is.

Harry McCall said...

That's right Jason: "It is what it is." Meaning it is Wrong!

Scott said...

M3,

The topic of this thread is about the prevalence of myths and how their goal is to inspire hope, faith and ideals.

Clearly, the belief in Jesus provides such inspiration to many. This is not in dispute. What's at question here is if the Christian God actually exists or is merely a myth - just as a man who was such a honorable example that he never lied, even as a child. But if God is more than just an myth that inspires us, then you make demands of God where I do not.

why do people view those as the two choices to pick between? Have you ever wondered about that? Why don't you question that?

Are you asking if God could just be smarter and more powerful than we are? I've essentially asked this question to you, but you just seem to keep avoiding it. However, I don't think you'd find someone who is just smarter and more powerful than we are worthy of worship or capable of saving us. Instead, you want a God that is powerful enough to create the universe from nothing, yet can't clearly tell us he loves us. I'm guessing these two things are important to you because..

- If God didn't create everything, then he can't be a perfect example to follow or be an ultimate authority to support your beliefs.
- If God could clearly tell us he loves us, surely he would have done so. Since God hasn't clearly and explicitly done so, he would not exist.

Perhaps it's not clear, but I don't think any being can really be infinite, omnipotent, and actually need or want anything. It's a contradiction of terms. However, these are excellent properties for manipulation and circumstance building - allowing God to contextualize situations into moral and philosophical examples.

For example, people observe and are affected by a wide range of experiences on a daily basis. Without a supernatural backdrop to contextualize these occurrences, they are merely one of an near infinite number of happenings that occur in the natural world. But when you introduce an sentient being that intentionally created everything from nothing, this being has the perceived ability and authority to provide supernatural context and intent where none existed before. A storm isn't just a potentially dangerous force of nature that must be prepared for, God is wielding his creation at his creation and the specific result that occurred was an intentional test of man's resolve, his faith or designed teach or punish him.

While I don't think you really believe God wields storms to punish man, you do appear to cling to the idea that God uses aspects of his creation to test or teach his creation. This includes using other people, their suffering and circumstances. I don't really see the difference in God using a storm or an aspect of human nature - he's still manipulating things by setting up situations to give them a specific context. In addition, given his nature and the details of the situations, they appear to be contrived, ad-hoc attempts to explain the world we observe. Nor do these situations appear to actually reveal anything that could not, or was not, revealed before or without a supernatural intelligence. So we have supposedly necessary situations that God creates which teach us unnecessary things we already knew, eventually figured out through some other means or found to actually be incorrect.

Despite these facts, you demand a God for whom these situations are necessary. I say these are unreasonable demands of a God that supposedly created the universe from nothing.

What we know is that, even to this day, a majority of the words population prefer oral communication. And before literacy was prevalent oral communication was all we had. And what is the key to successful oral communication is telling stories? Exaggerating and utilizing everyday experiences to get their point across. That is, one encodes the uncommon information in the common so it can be linked to a context which is external, relatively common and persistent. By associating unique information with non-unique, pre-existing external situations or events, even those who cannot read and write can take part.

Without God to set the stage, it's very difficult to make these associations.

For example, let's say we have a story of a father and son. The son goes off to battle, but the father does not approve. The son survives the war and when he returns home the father forgives him for his choice. Not long after, a storm approaches and the son is killed when the father's home and crops are destroyed. What do we make of this situation on face value?

People disagree, not every dies in battle and storms are dangerous?

But if you add God to the mix, he can give a specific purpose and context to these events and make something "more" out of them.

- God kills the son because he did not listen to his father and fought a unrighteous war.
- God punishes the father for being against a righteous war, by killing destroying the things he cares about, including his son.
- God kills the son because the father did not punish him for his disobedience. God shows the father what his response should have been and destroys his crop for not doing so in the first place.
- God was testing the father by inspiring his son to go off to and unrighteous war. The father passes the test. But God further tests the father through the storm's destruction of his crops and his son's death.

I could go on here... but I think you get the point.

God gives context to these situations where none is apparent.

- The war was contrary to God's will
- The war was God's will
- God expected the father to punish his son. His failure to do so resulted in his own punishment
- People should worship and believe in God despite difficult situations, such as war, disasters and death

But if the following were the real intentions of the stories...

- Fathers are wise. In many cases we should trust and rely on their wisdom.
- Some wars are worth fighting, despite being told otherwise by others
- Children should obey their parents. It's in everyone's best interest.
- People be thankful for the things they have - even in hard times.

One could confuse God's contextualization and backdrop of the story with the idea that God existed, has specific opinions and purpose for everything and will take action in the physical / supernatural realms based on these opinions.

If every situation we see in the Bible is contextualized by God's opinions, even the most common, such as breaking bread, then God must have opinions on every situation, right?. However, history has shown us that the God of every religion had opinions on situations. And what conclusion have we reached? They were myths designed to illustrate moral values or ideals using stories.

So, again, I'm not sure if you think a specific aspect of God (Jesus' example of compassion) is a really good example for us to follow or does God actually exist?

Because, if God does exist, there are significant implications that go beyond just setting an example to be compassionate to each other.

Manifesting Mini Me (MMM) said...

Scott - I don't want to belabor every point you've made - I recognize your stance and approach is consistent with
nonbelief. I feel I've addressed your queries, but my answers aren't going to conform to your satisfaction. I no longer seek or practice idolotry. I used to be discouraged that God wouldn't conform to my standards and I abandoned faith, but I am forever grateful now that He didn't act in the way I expected.

As far as God teaching us a lesson or testing us, I don't necessarily think that was His original plan - I think He is creative and wants to share for the purpose of enjoyment.

You wrote, "Instead, you want a God that is powerful enough to create the universe from nothing, yet can't clearly tell us he loves us." That's an interesting projection, Scott.

I don't believe He didn't clearly show us - it's that as a former nonbeliever, I wasn't capable of valuing or trusting His promptings or Jesus's visual aid but I never questioned why - I never searched my own heart - afterall, scripturally, He did say we are blind and captive - if one choses to ignore that, then one can remain rooted where they are - I know I did for a long time.

There is grace for human limitations, but one shouldn't confuse or promote their limitations as Godly love

Bye, Scott!
3M