Praise God for the Candiru Parasite! Isn't God Good?

When did God create the Candiru parasite? And why didn't he tell us how to avoid it? Seems to me a good God who cared for us would at least tell us, don't you?



To read up on other parasites get the book Parasite Rex. Read it Christian and let it strengthen your faith! Funny thing is that in our ecosystem we need them. But with a God who could perform perpetual miracles we don't need them at all! Which alternative seems most likely?

Oh, and no using the Omniscience Escape Clause.

What's that pain in your head? It's called Cognitive Dissonance.

;-)

Hat Tip: Rhacodactylus

If you like this and the other things I write put some pennies in my jar on your way out (to the right now ya'all). Thanks, every bit helps!

67 comments:

Rhacodactylus said...

Thanks for the mention John, lets not forget, this is the God who supposedly had this conversation at one point, so who knows, barb spikes in the urethra might be right in his wheelhouse =)

~Rhaco

Edward T. Babinski said...

FUNNY SONG ABOUT THE CANDIRU!

George Hrab sings "Cruel Spines"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nUV3mtqwXOk

The Universe is an Atheist said...

I can feel God's love radiating up my body!

Wait.... that isn't love!

It would have been really simple to throw that into the bible, too - just toss it in as a preface to the paperback addition or something, you know.

Rhacodactylus said...

Hey, if there was a list of warnings about things like the candiru in the back of the bible, I'd be much more liable to take it seriously.

Thanks for the clip Ed, I was forced to put it up on my blog.

~Rhaco.

Thesauros said...

"If you like this and the other things I write put some pennies in my jar on your way out "

Once in it for the money, always in it for the money.

Rhacodactylus said...

"once in it for the money, always in it for the money," yeah, screw that guy, wanting to be compensated for his time and creativity.

John you should quit your job and refuse to take any money, give it all to the poor, like Thesauros did . . . oh wait, sorry . . . I'm being told that Thesauros was just making a childish ad hominem attack in the hopes of discrediting your very reasonable Atheist views . . . never mind, carry on then =)

~Rhaco

Thesauros said...

"John you should quit your job"

This is your job? You trash Christians for a living? You hold out a tin cup for your attempts to destroy people who think differently than you do?

Good grief! That's even more . . . well - that's amazing.

stevec said...

If you like this sort of thing, you may like Oolon Colluphid's Guide to Creation, specifically the section called "Some More of God's Greatest Mistakes"

Repent and Trust in Jesus said...

Well you know it is a fallen world, God put a curse on mankind and the world itself due to Adam disobeying Him.

I think if God is going to actually judge everybody, then it would be wrong for Him to not put a curse on us and the world, because if He did not then we might think that He is okay with with all our disobedience to His standard.

It would be like He judges me one day, then sends me to Hell for all eternity, but He never made it known prior that He was upset with me. The curse He put on the world, which would include hurtful parasites, is to show us we need to take Him seriously.

Rhacodactylus said...

I actually have no way of knowing if this is or isn't John's full time job, but I have a weird feeling you wouldn't have a problem with a pastor making their living pushing their ideas, at least John's are reality based.

Oh, and I like the idea that the candiru is part of a meta-curse being cast on humanity, something about how oddly specific that justice is cracks me up. "They disobeyed me, so I'll design a fish who mainly attacks other fish, but due to the complexity of biological systems is capable of becoming disoriented when people urinate in a specific river in South America, and will be quite painful in a region of the anatomy that will be considered comical in 6000ish years . . . if that doesn't show them I'm the one true God then nothing will."

~Rhaco

ildi said...

You hold out a tin cup for your attempts to destroy people who think differently than you do?

You mean like this guy?

Thesauros said...

"John you should quit your job and refuse to take any money, give it all to the poor, like Thesauros did . ."

I hope you're happy. Your comment made me get out of bed to write this:

That’s just real interesting that you should advise me to quit my job and give my money to the poor.

It’s interesting, first, because like all atheists you show just how Biblically illiterate you really are. You glomp on to Jesus saying, “Give what you have to the poor,” but you completely miss the most important part. Jesus also said, “And then come, follow Me.”

The man could have given everything away to the poor, but without giving his life to Jesus, he would have been just as lost. As an atheist I can’t expect you to know any different.

But you were also telling me to do the same. You’re about thirty years too late. I’m telling you this not to brag but to get you to back off on this line of thinking.

We have seven adopted handicapped children. The oldest two, age 33 and 30 no longer live in our home.

In 2001 at the age of 51 my wife and I did quit our jobs (retired) and adopted five more significantly handicapped children; they are now age 10 (2) age 9 (2) and one child age 5. The middle two are in the bottom 5th and 4th percentile intellectually. The other three, while slightly better still have best large social and intellectual hurdles.

God provides just enough money to take care of these children. Not more than enough. Not less than enough. I am now sixty years old and when the youngest leaves home we will move into a retirement home and live on whatever pension we have coming in.

Between doing volunteer work to help feed our community’s poorest and doing pro bono counselling I volunteer between 15 and 20 hours a week.

And why do I do it? For one reason and one reason only. The love that Jesus has poured into our lives is so great that I / we cannot help but pass it on to those who need it most; the very people, not incidently that Jesus spent His time with when He walked the face of the earth. And, again not incidently, He left folks like you, those who don’t see themselves of needing any help, alone.

Rhacodactylus said...

Na, you say that I'm biblically illiterate, but you are the one failing to read what I said. I was simply mocking you for your condemnation of John for asking for donations, it was hypocritical and intellectually lazy of you, but I suppose I could have been more artful in my derision.

And adopting kids doesn't make your views on God any less silly.

~Rhaco

Reverend Phillip Brown said...

Dear John,

Why are you so upset? Isn't it survival of the fittest? Why the concern?

Phil

exreformed said...

Thesauros said...

"If you like this and the other things I write put some pennies in my jar on your way out "

Once in it for the money, always in it for the money.

Why can’t you just admit that it was a b.s. comment and you should not have made it? I make comments from time to time that I probably should not have. You are human and your not perfect.

John gets “pennies on the dollar” for book sales, hardly enough to make anyone “in it for the money”.




Thesaurus said:

And why do I do it? For one reason and one reason only. The love that Jesus has poured into our lives is so great that I / we cannot help but pass it on to those who need it most

Such a heart tugging testimony, you are such a humble servant of the Lord. I have now seen the error of my ways and I am going to repent and become a fundy again.

Oh, wait, I know a Mormon down the street who does just as much for his lord as you do yours. But now that I am a fundy again, I have to go tell him he is going to burn for eternity even though he takes care of handicapped kids as well.

Harry H. McCall, CET said...

It morally and ethically right for “sinful man” to wipe an entire portion of God’s creation off the face of the earth and feel great about it.

In fact, God’s creation of Smallpox has been destroyed by “sinful man” (as it now appears to have been) and the world is indeed a much better place without this creation of God! (Or should sinful man cry out to God for forgiveness in this destructive act on His good (Hebrew: tov) Genesis 1:31 creation?)

Fact is, God Himself should take full blame for all the suffering He has caused with this part of his creation on humanity as a Divine Original sin!

Jim said...

Thesauros,

It’s interesting, first, because like all atheists you show just how Biblically illiterate you really are. You glomp on to Jesus saying, “Give what you have to the poor,” but you completely miss the most important part. Jesus also said, “And then come, follow Me.”

Two can play that game:

You biblically illiterate Christians always glom on to Jesus saying "Follow me" but you completely miss the most important part "Sell everything you have and give to the poor, then you will have treasure in heaven." Have you sold everything you have? You must not have treasure in heaven.

Here is what's happening: You don't like the "sell everything" part, but you like the "follow me" part, so like any good Christian who makes the Bible a ventriloquist dummy, you claim higher importance for the commands that are easier to follow.

julio siqueira said...

Well, this blog is a mess. No wonder atheists will never win over non atheists in this Crusade of Modern Times. (tsc tsc tsc). Anyway, as to the Candiru Boy (fish), just think of it the other way aroung (rather "literally," so to speak... ;-) ). God could have made things far worse, had He decided that the fish would come in up (as Dawkins so nicely put it in his notorious speech for getting the Humanist of the Anus, oops, that is, Humanist of the Year Award - aka "Materialist of the Year Medal of Honor" - refering to the candid ideas of a poor woman astronomer...) Uranus... So, let's Praise The Lord as we should. :-)

Thesauros said...

"you like the "follow me"?

"you claim the commands that are easier to follow.?"

Easier to follow?

I promise you, if God did not exist, if He hadn't done a complete change of my character, I'd be doing what every other retired person dreams of doing, and it ain't raising a second family of handicapped kids or feeding the poor or giving away my time to help others.

Easier to follow?- what an stupid thing to say!

On the other hand, I think you're right in that a lot of us look for ways to avoid admitting that we worship our money and possessions as much as pagans do.

A lot of atheists think that means Jesus is telling us to become street people living on welfare. Just another stupid atheist belief.

What you fail to recognise is that Jesus consistently goes after that which people place more importance on than Him. He goes after the reasons that we put Jesus second in our lives. For this individual it WAS his money and possession. But they weren't his main problem. His main problem was that Jesus wasn't first. He could have given it all away and still been lost -

just as you are lost and on your way to hell unless you put Jesus first in your life.


More than possessions, Jesus told most people to quit depending on their sense of goodness. "I don't need God in order to be a good person."

No one can ever be good enough to be good enough for heaven.

That's why you have a problem of eternal proportions.

Jesus has provided a way for you to escape what's coming your way.

What are you going to do about that?

Beautiful Feet said...

Pointing to those things that can cause potential suffering does not eliminate the possibility of God's existence especially a God who fully acknowledged the truth that there would always be war and always be poverty (suffering and distress), but provided something more powerful than evil and suffering-

At any rate, it sounds as though you guys have a heartfelt concern about these matters-

Beautiful Feet said...

Pointing to those things that can cause potential suffering does not eliminate the possibility of God's existence especially a God who fully acknowledged the truth that there would always be war and always be poverty (suffering and distress), but provided something more powerful than evil and suffering-

At any rate, it sounds as though you guys have a heartfelt concern about these matters-

Samuel said...

Good God man, I'm going to have nightmares now!

But just in case you didn't know, this is how it really happened.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4_G9awnDCmg

ildi said...

A lot of atheists think that means Jesus is telling us to become street people living on welfare.

No, Jesus was telling you to join up with other Christians in a commune:

Acts 4: The Believers Share Their Possessions

32All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of his possessions was his own, but they shared everything they had.
33With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all.
34There were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned lands or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales
35and put it at the apostles' feet, and it was distributed to anyone as he had need.
36Joseph, a Levite from Cyprus, whom the apostles called Barnabas (which means Son of Encouragement), 37sold a field he owned and brought the money and put it at the apostles' feet.

Lvka said...

Consider your parasites and small-poxes as the 'thorns and thistles' in Genesis 3:18. God did not create evil, but creation was corrupted. The roots of this corruption are partly due to the fact that the world comes from nothing, and so it naturally tends towards chaos and disorder. God's grace, on the other hand, is the source of "logos" and order. Men, being made in God's image, can harness that grace: as the Latins said, "man sanctifies the place". But we chose not to, when given the opportunity (Adam & Eve & All That).

matt the magnificient said...

"Once in it for the money, always in it for the money."

Boy, if that statement doesn't apply toward organized religion, I don't know what does. Raffles, bake sales, casino night, pass the plate, tithe, please donate your time, money,and belongings; its expensive being a christian, i don't know how you can afford it.

ildi said...

God did not create evil, but creation was corrupted. The roots of this corruption are partly due to the fact that the world comes from nothing, and so it naturally tends towards chaos and disorder.

Are you saying God was limited in his ability to create perfection by natural laws? So, God is not omnipotent.

Beautiful Feet said...

Ildi wrote, "Are you saying God was limited in his ability to create perfection by natural laws? So, God is not omnipotent."

God is perfect in grace -- grace gives allowances for antagonism to be expressed

ildi said...

We weren't talking about grace, BF, but about why the supposedly omnipotent God is hampered by the natural laws that supposedly he himself created.

clamat said...

@Beautiful Feet

“God is perfect in grace -- grace gives allowances for antagonism to be expressed.”

Following on ildi’s point:

Your post ignores another significant issue raised by Lvka’s original post: Where did the “antagonism,” i.e., the “evil” or “corruption” of which Lvka wrote, come from? (Yes, The Problem of Evil rears its head once again.)

Per Lvka, “God did not create evil.” Rather, the world “naturally” tends toward chaos and disorder, giving rise to corruption, i.e., evil.

But God created the world, right? If God created a world that naturally gives rise to chaos, disorder, corruption and evil, how does God escape the charge that he is responsible for evil, thereby negating Lvka’s initial claim? And if God could not prevent the corruption of his perfect creation, then Nature trumps God, which is ildi’s point.

Assuming God’s omnipotence and role as sole Creator: An omnipotent Creator God who allows the evil for which he is responsible to continue to exist doesn’t sound “graceful” to me. It sounds, well, evil.

Thesauros said...

It really is priceless. The same atheists who claim the Bible is irrelevant and out of date use the very same blame game as the very first human.

"My sin is Your fault."

"the woman you gave me . . "

Modern atheist thinking - as primative as the first human being.

Priceless.

Jim said...

Thesauros,

I'll ask again, have you "sold everything you have?"

Who are you to decide which of God's commands are "more important?"

I guess at the pearly gates you'll be able to outline to God how you knew which of his commands were more important . . . and which ones you decided were not important enough to follow. That should be comical.

By the way, YOU changed your life, not God. Ask Tom Cruise if God changed his life or L Ron Hubbard and Scientology. Do you think Christianity has a lock down on changing lives for the better? Come on! My life is a thousand times better as an atheist than it was a Christian.

You taking care of handicapped children is the humanist in you--not the Christian.

Regards.

ildi said...

"My sin is Your fault."

"the woman you gave me . . "


Oh, yeah, one of my totes fave stories! God puts Adam and Eve, who are without the knowledge of good and evil, into this garden and tells them to have a great time, just don't eat the fruit of this one tree, which happens to be the tree of knowledge of good and evil. Then he goes off, and leaves them alone with the tree. Snake comes along, yadayadayada... long story short, they eat the fruit, and NOW gain the knowledge of good and evil! Tell me these are not the games played by a psychotic despot. I treat my dog better than this.

Bad enough that Yahweh punishes them for something they didn't have the wherewithal to know was wrong, but he punishes their descendants, too! True story!

Lvka said...

Perfection will be reached upon eschaton. Creation, in a sense, is not yet completed. (That's why ancient commentaries on Genesis highlight the fact that there's no "evening" to the seventh day). That's why Saint Paul wrote the following in Romans 8:19-23:

For the earnest expectation of the creature waiteth for the manifestation of the sons of God. For the creature was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of him who hath subjected it in hope, because the creature itself also shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation groaneth and travaileth in pain together until now. And not only they, but ourselves also, which have the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body.

For more, see Saint Athanasius the Great, "On the Incarnation of the Word".

Lvka said...

For the transgression of the commandment was making them turn back again according to their nature; and as they had at the beginning come into being out of non-existence, so were they now on the way to returning, through corruption, to non-existence again. The presence and love of the Word had called them into being; inevitably, therefore when they lost the knowledge of God, they lost existence with it; for it is God alone Who exists, evil is non-being, the negation and antithesis of good. By nature, of course, man is mortal, since he was made from nothing; [...].

Though they were by nature subject to corruption, the grace of their union with the Word made them capable of escaping from the natural law, provided that they retained the beauty of innocence with which they were created. That is to say, the presence of the Word with them shielded them even from natural corruption, [...]


(St. Athanasius the Great, On the Incarnation).

nazani said...

Maybe the candiru fish is God's way of telling us not to pee in fresh water. Genghis Khan was also very adamant about not fouling potable water, but his method of punishment was more efficient.
However, the schistosomiasis parasite was strictly for laughs.

GearHedEd said...

Lvka said,

"...That's why Saint Paul wrote the following in Romans 8:19-23:..."

WHy are you reading someone else's mail and acting like it was addressed to you, Lvka?

Thesauros said...

When you were a Christian? That’s rich!

Just like John Loftus wanted people to see Jesus in him. Pretty hard to see that which was never there.

“They left us, but they were never really with us. If they had been, they would have stuck it out with us, loyal to the end. In leaving they showed their true colours, showed they never did belong. So who is lying here? It’s the person who denies that Jesus is the Divine Christ, that’s who."
1st John2:19,20
=========

“Bad enough that Yahweh punishes them for something they didn't have the wherewithal to know was wrong,”

They knew exactly what was going on; knew exactly what the ground rules were. Just as you do.

ildi said...

Just as you do.

Yes, lucky for us Pastafarians, The Gospel of the Flying Spaghetti Monster is pretty straight-forward.

clamat said...

@Lvka

Which posts were your cites to Paul and Athanasius intended to repond to?

Harry H. McCall, CET said...

Hey Lvka,

My wife and I went out to Applebee’s last week and I was tell her about the St. George slaying the dragon (as well as the other miracles that made George one of the most famous saints in the Orthodox tradition). We were laughing so hard we had to stop eating!

She wants Father Tom to explain this whole miracle and dragon deal to her.

Now I know why only Greek Orthodox’s are really saved. (We still have fun discussing Saint George.)

Harry H. McCall, CET said...

Lvka,

Sorry about the typo’s above. I still can’t help laughing!

Harry

Beautiful Feet said...

clamat wrote, "
Assuming God’s omnipotence and role as sole Creator: An omnipotent Creator God who allows the evil for which he is responsible to continue to exist doesn’t sound “graceful” to me. It sounds, well, evil."

Well, let's see -- I believe that God is gracious which gives allowances for forces antagonistic towards Him to exist. I am presuming you're one of God's antagonists -- are you not? I suppose that could be counted as evil that He gives an allowance for His enemies, such as yourself. But, nope, I think He's gracious.

clamat said...

@Beautiful Feet

Nope, I'm not one of God's antagonists - one cannot be antagonistic toward something that doesn't exist!

Rather, my aim is a simple one: Consistency.

To this end, I'll keep noting that you keep straying from the original point, which was "evil" not "antagonism" or "grace."

If God is the source of all things, then he is the source of evil, which is inconsistent with most conceptions of the Christian god.

If God is the source of evil, but cannot control his creation, he is not all powerful, which is inconsistent with most conceptions of the Christian god.

If God is the source of evil and tolerates its infliction upon innocents, he is evil himself, which is inconsistent with most conceptions of the Christian god.

If he is not the source of evil, he is not the source of all things, which also is inconsistent with most conceptions of the Christian god.

In other words, most conceptions of the Christian god are inconsistent.

Including yours.

Thesauros said...

"Nope, I'm not one of God's antagonists - one cannot be antagonistic toward something that doesn't exist!"

Right - you’ll just spend hours of every single day thinking about and writing about this Being that you don’t believe in - that makes sense.

"Rather, my aim is a simple one: Consistency."

And you think that Creator God needs to abide by your definition of evil? You’ll be glad to know that He agrees.

In fact that is why He warned us. Choose to disobey and the whole universe even the “cattle and the beasts of the ground,” will be inflicted with the curse of sickness and violence and death. Genesis 3:14

Evil was promised and evil was given.
==========

You say that if God causes / allows / inflicts suffering this makes Him “evil” as though this is somehow a great challenge to your Creator. Think again:

Exodus 4:11 - Who gave man his mouth. Who makes him deaf or mute? Who gives him sight or makes him blind. Is it not I, the Lord.”

Isaiah 45:7 - I send good times and I send disaster, I Jehovah am He who does these things.

Amos 4:6-11 - I gave you empty stomaches in every city and lack of bread in every town. I filled your nostrils with the stench of your dead sons.”

Romans 9:13-16 - I chose to bless Jacob but not Esau, and God said this before the children were even born, before they had done anything either good or bad.

Amos 3:6 - When disaster comes upon a city, is it not I the Lord who has caused it?

The fact is, God doesn’t care if you think He’s a monster. He doesn’t seek your approval or permission.

His plan for Creation is going to be carried out and the very gates of hell will not be able to stand against it.

You need to adapt to reality, son. Pretending it isn’t so will do you not one bit of good. In fact, fighting against reality is going to work against you in the long run.

Under your Creator's plan you are on your way to hell - for eternity.

Unless you humble yourself under your Creator's plan your fate is sealed.

Unless you humble yourself and accept the offer of salvation that is already in place, waiting for your acceptance, you will spend eternity in hell.

You don't have to like it. You can spend every day from not until you die thinking about it and writing about and protesting it and it won't make one speck of difference.

Until you humble yourself under your Creator's plan the stench of eternal death oozes from every pore of your body.

matt the magnificient said...

WOW theasauros!!! your god sounds like a barrel of fun! just the kind of guy i would want as a roomate, forever!! seriously, all the things you've listed as caused by god have been explained by scientists or can be explained by examining how people live their lives. there is no "man in the sky" with a magnifying glass burning our anthills based on our belief in him, or based on some "original sin". This whole "i am god, and no matter what you do, you will suffer forever if you don't believe in me" stuff is nothing more that voodoo nonsense used to bilk the masses out of their hard earned money and exploiting them by using vague threats and promises. god is no more real than the boogie man, living in a childs closet.

clamat said...

@Thesauros

Wrong. I spend my time thinking and writing about what you people who claim to believe in God say about that God. Big difference. And I don’t ask for consistency from a mythical God, but from you folks. It’s likely too much to expect, I know, but hope springs eternal.

I do this not because I'm afraid of the tyrannical, evil God you describe. It's a myth after all. Rather, I do this because: (1) I think it's important to elimninate magical thinking of all stripes; and(2) I am very afraid of the very real people who base their worldly morality on this despicable mythical creature.

The rest of your post is accurately summed up thus:

[Waving fingers scarily] “Oooga boooga booga! Chapter verse! Chapter verse! Oooga booga!”

clamat said...

@Thesauros

A follow-up. I also spend a lot of time discussing the Bible and Christianity and God simply because I find the discussion interesting and stimulating.

Of course, I spend a lot of time discussing the Lord of the Rings, too. Frodo Lives!

Prove he doesn't.

Harry H. McCall, CET said...

In the Pastoral Epistle of I Timothy 4:1 we read:

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils;

Since the writer of I Timothy says that there are “Doctrines of Devils”, can anyone tell me where I can get a copy of a Systematic Theology on the Doctrines of Devils?

(I got a copy of Anton Laveys “Satanic Bible”, but he is simply an atheist who believes in neither God nor Satan.)

I figure this might be in the order of Karl Barth’s massive “Church Dogmatics” only be written from the hermeneutical point of view of Devils.

ildi said...

In fact that is why He warned us. Choose to disobey and the whole universe even the “cattle and the beasts of the ground,” will be inflicted with the curse of sickness and violence and death. Genesis 3:14

Evil was promised and evil was given.


It's really such a pity that Yahweh won out over Ba'al when the Semitic religions were duking it out. Participating in fertility rites sounds so much more fun than sucking up to this vengeful deity with serious rage and esteem issues.

Until you humble yourself under your Creator's plan the stench of eternal death oozes from every pore of your body.

I tell you what, T-man, your writing skills are wasted on blogging! Lovecraft and Poe would be proud...

Of course, I spend a lot of time discussing the Lord of the Rings, too. Frodo Lives!

Man, you stole my line, clamat. LOTR has a much more cohesive story line. I guess it helps when there's only one author.

Beautiful Feet said...

Hi Clamat -- you responded, "If God is the source of all things, then he is the source of evil, which is inconsistent with most conceptions of the Christian god."

Clamat, one of the toughest things about faith is coming to the recognition that God loves His enemies. that is called 'spiritual meat'. But not all of God's enemies love Him in return -- that is when ppl continue to cooperate with hurtful and cruel behavior.

The gospel is not, "behave yourselves or be condemned to hell" but rather, God telling mankind, "I see you suffering in cruelty and evil and desire to save you."

At any rate, I disagree with your terms of antagonism -- I know firsthand that one who does not believe is antagonistic towards belief in God -- I used to be a nonbeliever and one who, insidiously, had contempt for authority and expressed it towards those who believed

clamat said...

@Beautiful Feet

The gospel is not, "behave yourselves or be condemned to hell" but rather, God telling mankind, "I see you suffering in cruelty and evil and desire to save you."

Thank you for your response. It would be nice, however, if you could address my point. The point is that a Creator God necessarily is responsible for the “cruelty and evil” that he now desires to “save” us from.

Are you familiar with the ‘70s t.v. show M.A.S.H.? In one episode, the character Hawkeye, a doctor during the Korean War, is undergoing psychiatric counseling. At one point during therapy, Hawkeye remembers his childhood best friend and hero, whom he lovingly recalls as having once “saved his life,” by pulling Hawkeye from a river after Hawkeye had clumsily fallen out of the boat. However, when the therapist presses further, Hawkeye remembers the truth. Breaking down in grief and anger, Hawkeye wails: “He pushed me! He pushed me in! And then, when I got back in the boat, he said ‘I just saved your life, you should thank me.’ And I thanked him! That son of a bitch!”

Your God is the boy who pushes his friends into the water and then insists they thank Him for pulling them back into the boat. Worse, actually: He’ll let them drown unless they thank Him first.

clamat said...

@Beautiful Feet

I know firsthand that one who does not believe is antagonistic towards belief in God.

Yes, antagonistic towards belief in God. Just as I am antagonistic to all forms of magical thinking, of whatever stripe.

Not "antagonistic towards God." Belief exists, God does not.

Thesauros said...

@chlamydia

Oh you are sooooo close. Just like atheists who appeal to the 1st Law of Thermodynamics can’t quite figure out that the law itself doesn’t come into existence until matter / energy come into existence, the idea of God “using” suffering, loss, pain, tragedy etc. doesn’t come into effect UNTIL evil / sin enters the human realm.

I gave you a bunch of verses a couple days ago where God says, “You want someone to take the blame for pushing you out of the boat? Well I’m your man.”

Now that suffering is here, God uses that suffering for our growth (not your growth - those who are in a healed and forgiven relationship with Him) and in fact the presence of God IN our suffering is so great, so awesome, so wonderful that Paul says, “We rejoice in our weakness, our suffering our sickness.”

The part that you are missing is that the ENTRANCE of evil into the human realm was OUR choice. Within this context God did not push us out of the boat. We jumped.

Yes God knew that we would jump but the choice was ours to make. We could have stayed in the safety of the boat or jump in with the sharks and we picked the latter. God even told us what would happen and we still decided to jump.

You're still picking the latter to this very day - every day. You know exactly what the outcome will be and you refuse to climb back on board.

So:
You are absolutely right in that God does allow / cause (the result is the same) suffering to enter our lives. He freely admits that He does push us out of the boat and into loss and pain etc.

You are absolutely wrong in that the COMING INTO THE HUMAN REALM of suffering was our choice. God did not push anyone into that choice, just as He is not forcing you to make the very same choice today.

clamat said...

@Thesauros

You: “@chlamydia”

I stopped reading at that point. It’s hard to believe a sixty-something father of seven is such a juvenile ass. I’ll just assume the rest of your fevered ramblings are a lengthy concession and apology for the atrocious reasoning of your prior posts. Accepted.

clamat said...

@Beautiful Feet

I used to be a nonbeliever and one who, insidiously, had contempt for authority and expressed it towards those who believed.

You’ll have to take my word for it, but I actually have great respect for legitimate authorities. For example, those that derive their just powers from the consent of the governed.

Another reason I’m not crazy about the notion of the Christian God: It’s downright un-American!

Thesauros said...

"I stopped reading at that point."

Mm hmm. Sure you did.

Does lying fit with "I don't need God in order to be a good person"?

clamat said...

@Thesauros

Ah, more insults and unfounded aspersions. Prove I read the rest of your post. Oh wait, forgot, you’re one of those guys who don’t feel any need for proof.

I’ll rise to your bait once more, not because your rants raise any remotely troubling points, and not to change your mind; I started this exchange suspecting you are beyond reason, and am now convinced.

Rather, my primary appeal is to any Undecideds who may be watching. I am confident it is clear to them that I and other posters have systematically demolished every “argument” you have ever advanced. Not that we’ve proven there is no God, just that we’ve shown you can’t maintain a coherent thought.

I’m also confident your sputtering revival tent harangues and childish name calling demonstrate that aside from having only the most tenuous grip on reason, you are also misanthropic, self-righteous, and immature.

So my secondary appeal is to the reasonable Decideds out there: Seriously, Beautiful Feet, you want this guy on your side?

So for their sake, and for the final time…

To crib from Sam Harris’ debate with Dennis Prager: You can’t keep your “x’s” straight.

You: “[The First Law of Thermodynamics] itself doesn’t come into existence until matter / energy come into existence.” Assuming this isn’t gibberish even in the context of physics, in the context of logic the equivalent would be: “[Evil] itself doesn’t come into existence until…”

Until what? Well, until Creator God created it, as he created everything.

You also can’t keep your metaphors straight. God created me, the boat, and the river. And then He pushed me into it. “Coming into the realm of human suffering” was decidedly not my choice.

Nor was it “our” choice. God poisoned his own creation, yet assigns the blame to us. The Serpent was in the Garden. God created Adam & Eve without the knowledge of good and evil. God knew that, as created, they were destined to heed the Serpent. Yet instead of kicking Himself in The Butt for being such a Dope, he kicked Adam and Eve’s and all of their descendants’ “sorry asses” out.

So, back to the original issue: Your God is demonstrated to be unjust and wicked. Why don’t you just pick another? There are many out there from which to choose. The fact that you remain unswervingly committed to this one is evidence of a disturbed and disturbing character.

God, however, remains a myth.

Best,

clamat

Thesauros said...

“self-righteous,”

If you understood Christianity you would know that we have no righteousness in and of ourselves.

It is therefore impossible for a Christian to be, as you say, self -righteous.

It is you, the atheist, who sees your self as righteous (I don’t need God in order to be good) without any input from an external source so the term applies strictly to your side of the court.

"Creator God created it, as he created everything."

Have you ever noticed that the concept of:
up doesn’t exist in the absence of down

hot doesn’t exist in the absence of cold

light doesn’t exist in the absence of dark

in doesn’t exist in the absence of out

love doesn’t exist in the absence of ignoring?

Have you noticed those things?

In the same manner, I believe that good doesn’t exist in the absence of evil. I certainly don’t expect to understand this until the other side but this I do know. Even if God did create “evil” as you understand the process, it does not follow that the Creator Himself must be evil.

There are many areas of life where we must do something painful, even potentially lethal in order to bring about good.

If it suits His objective, which it obviously does, your Creator and mine was totally within His rights to allow for the choice to rebel against His will (which is the definition of evil that I use) to exist.

That is a choice that you make on a daily basis and for which you will pay the price. Unless you allow Jesus to pay the price for you. Ah, but them I remember. You’re too noble to allow this monster to pay the penalty for your sins.

clamat said...

@thesauros

God, I hate my lack of willpower, but I can’t resist - you’re too amusing and you make it so easy.

Christians can’t be self-righteous? This statement sounds like the epitome of self-righteousness to me, but fine, maybe you’ll prefer “smugly sanctimonious”?

“Allow” Jesus?! So I’m preventing Jesus/God from doing something He wants to do? So we’re agreed, He’s not all powerful.

clamat said...

@thesauros

I also note you do not dispute “misanthropic” or “immature.” :-P

clamat said...

@thesauros

You: “Have you ever noticed that the concept of [hot/cold, light/dark, up/down, etc.]… in the same manner, I believe that good doesn’t exist in the absence of evil.” [emphasis added]

Since you can't keep your x's straight, I'll do it for you: "I believe the concept of good doesn’t exist in the absence of the concept of evil."

The “concepts” you identify do not describe discrete things that exist, but relationships. For example, there is no “hot” or “cold.” Rather, these terms describe relative temperature.

Applied to the concepts of good and evil, this sounds like moral relativism to me. So you’re a moral relativist, then?

Thesauros said...

“Christians can’t be self-righteous? This statement sounds like the epitome of self-righteousness to me,”

Then you still don’t get it. I didn’t expect that you would.

I’m sure there are some people who go to Church who feel they’re better than others. As you know from your own life, that attitude isn’t reserved for the religious.

On the other hand, in the vast majority of cases I think that a perception of sanctimonious or holier than thou is nothing but a projection on the part of the outsider.

When I deny the charge of self-righteous, what I’m saying, in a technical fashion, is that the obvious definition of self - righteousness does not and cannot fit someone who by they very definition and process of becoming a Christian is the admission that on my own I have no righteousness.
==========

“Allow” Jesus?! So I’m preventing Jesus/God from doing something He wants to do? So we’re agreed, He’s not all powerful.

You may not have self control but God does. Giving you a choice is no indication that He lacks power.

There are many things that I COULD do for my children but I choose not to because it's in their best interest that they learn to do it themselves.

You can bet your butt you’d complain loud and clear if God took away your choice and forced you to spend eternity with Him.

clamat said...

@thesauros

Nope, you said I don't "allow Jesus" to save me, not "Jesus allows me" to choose.

At least cop to sloppy writing, for Pete's sake.

Thesauros said...

You don't allow it. Jesus would like to give you the gift of salvation and you won't allow that to happen.

Lots of people refuse to accept good things in life and instead choose that which is self-destructive. Your refusal to accept forgiveness is just one example.

B.R. said...

Reading the comments of Thesauros is almost as amusing as watching a Marx Brothers' film. With very strong emphasis on the "almost".

clamat said...

@B.R.

Dude, why you wanna insult the Marx Brothers?

Recall that thesauros is the card who thought calling me "chlamydia" was the height of wit.

I can see him chortling at his computer: "Chlamydia. Heh, heh, heh."

Not the Marx Brothers, Beavis and Butthead.

Beautiful Feet said...

Hi Clam! You wrote, "Thank you for your response. It would be nice, however, if you could address my point. The point is that a Creator God necessarily is responsible for the “cruelty and evil” that he now desires to “save” us from."

I suspect that you are pretty much a real sweetheart. I share your disdain for someone who causes pain and then demands our respect -- respect cannot be demanded -- demands come from domination.

But God is creative and expressive and I know that creativity cannot be successfully repressed --- if God were to be a dictator, then of course He would eliminate all things corrupt and offensive -- But His standard is about creative expression and liberty and grace. That is tough to accept sometimes, until a person comes to terms with his own personal issues of cruelty. If I think you are worthy of loving, how much more does God know that you are??? Faith is not about eliminating all those who remain infected with cruelty, but growing to a point of grace where one can extend the hand of faith and grace to those who are yet dominated by such.

Take care, Clam!