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Questions for theists
Posted: 03 August 2013 04:51 PM   [ Ignore ]
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I have some questions for any of the theists on this forum.

Why do you believe in god? Where did that belief come from?

How do you know it’s true?

Please don’t say you just “feel it.” Don’t cite bible verses with no corroboration. 

Tell me what you would say to a person with no belief or understanding of your belief system—lets say an alien from a different planet who never heard of any god and never heard of your religion. What would you say to that person to persuade him or her to accept your belief and your religion and not other gods or other religions or no gods and no religions?  What is it that makes you sure your god and your religion are true while others are not?

Lois

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Posted: 03 August 2013 06:52 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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“In the beginning, God created the universe. This has made many people very angry and has been widely regarded as a bad move.”
Douglas Adams, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe

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Posted: 04 August 2013 03:39 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Lois - 03 August 2013 04:51 PM

Why do you believe in god? Where did that belief come from?

How do you know it’s true?

When I was presented with the question in my own mind of whether I believed in God or not, I couldn’t not believe.  Since I believed, I decided it would be foolish not to learn about God and do his will, so I prayed and asked for his help.

After studying Christianity and learning about Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, and others, the Christian perspective and set of beliefs makes complete sense to me.  It explains the world around me and the purpose for it.  I don’t know that it’s true, but when I reason anything other than Christian teaching, it doesn’t make sense.

I cannot convince anyone of my beliefs, I suspect not even an alien.  In Christianity I can only tell them the Gospel message.  It’s completely up to them whether or not they believe, and I accept that. 

I am taking a chance, because if Islam is right, I’m toast.

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Posted: 05 August 2013 11:05 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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Where did that belief come from?
Did you grow up in a religious atmosphere?

Do you think if you were born in, say the Middle East you may have been a good Muslim?

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Posted: 05 August 2013 11:34 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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LilySmith - 04 August 2013 03:39 PM
Lois - 03 August 2013 04:51 PM

Why do you believe in god? Where did that belief come from?

How do you know it’s true?

When I was presented with the question in my own mind of whether I believed in God or not, I couldn’t not believe.  Since I believed, I decided it would be foolish not to learn about God and do his will, so I prayed and asked for his help.

After studying Christianity and learning about Judaism, Islam, Buddhism, and others, the Christian perspective and set of beliefs makes complete sense to me.  It explains the world around me and the purpose for it.  I don’t know that it’s true, but when I reason anything other than Christian teaching, it doesn’t make sense.

I cannot convince anyone of my beliefs, I suspect not even an alien.  In Christianity I can only tell them the Gospel message.  It’s completely up to them whether or not they believe, and I accept that. 

I am taking a chance, because if Islam is right, I’m toast.


Were your parents Christians? Were you sent to church or Sunday School?  Or did you “choose” Christianity with no inkling of what it was before you decided to study all those religions dispassionately and without prejudice?

Lois

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Posted: 06 August 2013 08:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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Lois - 05 August 2013 11:34 AM

Were your parents Christians? Were you sent to church or Sunday School?  Or did you “choose” Christianity with no inkling of what it was before you decided to study all those religions dispassionately and without prejudice?

Lois

I wasn’t raised in a religious home, but did have some Christian influences in my family, while other parts of my family were not Christian.  I had many influences in my life.  I became a Christian in my late twenties and began learning about the faith at that point.

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Posted: 06 August 2013 10:20 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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LilySmith - 06 August 2013 08:04 AM
Lois - 05 August 2013 11:34 AM

Were your parents Christians? Were you sent to church or Sunday School?  Or did you “choose” Christianity with no inkling of what it was before you decided to study all those religions dispassionately and without prejudice?

Lois

I wasn’t raised in a religious home, but did have some Christian influences in my family, while other parts of my family were not Christian.  I had many influences in my life.  I became a Christian in my late twenties and began learning about the faith at that point.

Very admirable what you said in an earlier post, that you accept that others must come to their own beliefs, which may be different from your own. I wish more Christians (and Muslims and Jews and a few Atheists I can think of) had that attitude, the world would be a better place.

One thing I don’t understand though. IMHO, the human brain and its ability to reason seems to me God’s “greatest gift” (well, that and the ability to love).  Given that, why would she want us to NOT use her gift, and instead rely on Faith, which is the purposeful act of NOT using the gift?  If I were Her I’d be pissed off.

[ Edited: 06 August 2013 10:24 AM by CuthbertJ ]
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Posted: 06 August 2013 12:35 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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CuthbertJ - 06 August 2013 10:20 AM
LilySmith - 06 August 2013 08:04 AM
Lois - 05 August 2013 11:34 AM

Were your parents Christians? Were you sent to church or Sunday School?  Or did you “choose” Christianity with no inkling of what it was before you decided to study all those religions dispassionately and without prejudice?

Lois

I wasn’t raised in a religious home, but did have some Christian influences in my family, while other parts of my family were not Christian.  I had many influences in my life.  I became a Christian in my late twenties and began learning about the faith at that point.

Very admirable what you said in an earlier post, that you accept that others must come to their own beliefs, which may be different from your own. I wish more Christians (and Muslims and Jews and a few Atheists I can think of) had that attitude, the world would be a better place.

One thing I don’t understand though. IMHO, the human brain and its ability to reason seems to me God’s “greatest gift” (well, that and the ability to love).  Given that, why would she want us to NOT use her gift, and instead rely on Faith, which is the purposeful act of NOT using the gift?  If I were Her I’d be pissed off.

G0od point. It’s another point in favor of it being male, though.  Typical male “thinking.”

Lois

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Posted: 06 August 2013 02:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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LOIS said - “It’s another point in favor of it being male, though.  Typical male thinking.”  I’m missing your point. What’s the typical male thinking? You’re not saying only a male god would give us Reason as our greatest gift are you? If so THAT to me is typical anti-female thinking (only a male would think of reason as the greatest gift).

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Posted: 06 August 2013 05:02 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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CuthbertJ - 06 August 2013 02:15 PM

LOIS said - “It’s another point in favor of it being male, though.  Typical male thinking.”  I’m missing your point. What’s the typical male thinking? You’re not saying only a male god would give us Reason as our greatest gift are you? If so THAT to me is typical anti-female thinking (only a male would think of reason as the greatest gift).


You said, “why would she want us to NOT use her gift, and instead rely on Faith, which is the purposeful act of NOT using the gift?  If I were Her I’d be pissed off”.  I was agreeing with your idea that a male god does just that—doesn’t want people to use the gift. A female god would want people to use it (I hope), and as you said, would be pissed off when people refused to use it.

Lois

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Posted: 08 August 2013 10:00 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Lois - 06 August 2013 05:02 PM
CuthbertJ - 06 August 2013 02:15 PM

LOIS said - “It’s another point in favor of it being male, though.  Typical male thinking.”  I’m missing your point. What’s the typical male thinking? You’re not saying only a male god would give us Reason as our greatest gift are you? If so THAT to me is typical anti-female thinking (only a male would think of reason as the greatest gift).


You said, “why would she want us to NOT use her gift, and instead rely on Faith, which is the purposeful act of NOT using the gift?  If I were Her I’d be pissed off”.  I was agreeing with your idea that a male god does just that—doesn’t want people to use the gift. A female god would want people to use it (I hope), and as you said, would be pissed off when people refused to use it.

Lois

Well really my point was, a god, whether girl or boy, having given us the gift of reason would want us to use it. Male/Female doesn’t enter into it. But no big deal.  I like to use She when referring to the god because it cuts through the usual psychological crutch most Christians have of thinking of god as a super-Mr Santa in the sky.

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Posted: 09 August 2013 10:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Hmm, I never got a reply about why god would want us to not use the greatest gift we have - reason, and instead use faith which is the absence of reason.

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Posted: 09 August 2013 05:56 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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At the time of Jesus, God was telling us to use our brains. When the bible says to seek the truth or to seek the light. Light is knowledge.  Older Gnostic teachings that are in the bible. Look for the light (knowledge) inside you and you will find God. That’s why Jesus claimed to be the son of God. We are all the sons and daughters of God. The Holy Spirit was the cloud of knowledge that shined bright. Then the church went another direction with the teachings. Try reading the bible in Gnostic form and you will see the difference.

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Posted: 13 October 2013 03:03 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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You could read Romans 1-12 a short read that’s called the Roman Road to salvation.  He clearly speaks to this audience of mostly unbelievers so they can understand the simplicity of the faith.

The Bible states that “No man seeks after God…” and that “no one comes to the Son unless the Father draws him/her” 

So for your question:  “What if I don’t have faith?  What if I want to believe?”

Answer:  “Faith cometh by hearing and hearing by the Word of God.”  Rom 10:17   This simply means get a Bible if you don’t have one and read it smile  You might say a tiny but powerful prayer that is also in scripture…“Lord please help me with my unbelief”  Do it regularly and be patient for the calling/conviction process which leads to a solid faith.  Reach out to believers and ask them for their testimony.  They are usually happy to share it.  Usually meaning I’ve met some who guard their beliefs in an unbiblical way for whatever reasons.

What is irrefutable by anybody here is the fact that humans use faith everyday in their daily lives.  If I go to the grocery store and grab a can of corn and drop it in the basket.  What principle have I just used?
The metal can is sealed, it has a picture of corn and writing that says corn but do I really KNOW there’s corn in that can?  No.  You are putting faith in the grocer and the corn canning company correct?

It’s the same process for believing that the Bible is about the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.  That book is a can and the Word is Jesus.  John 1:1   Pardon the analogy…best I got for now.

Hebrews 11:1-4 Sphere of Faith

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Posted: 13 October 2013 04:04 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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Lois - 03 August 2013 04:51 PM

I have some questions for any of the theists on this forum.

Why do you believe in god? Where did that belief come from?

How do you know it’s true?

Please don’t say you just “feel it.” Don’t cite bible verses with no corroboration. 

Tell me what you would say to a person with no belief or understanding of your belief system—lets say an alien from a different planet who never heard of any god and never heard of your religion. What would you say to that person to persuade him or her to accept your belief and your religion and not other gods or other religions or no gods and no religions?  What is it that makes you sure your god and your religion are true while others are not?

Lois

I would prefer to answer why I don’t believe and all I need is four words.  Because I can think.

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Posted: 13 October 2013 04:19 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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LilySmith - 04 August 2013 03:39 PM
Lois - 03 August 2013 04:51 PM

Why do you believe in god? Where did that belief come from?

How do you know it’s true?

When I was presented with the question in my own mind of whether I believed in God or not, I couldn’t not believe. 

 

I’m afraid I’m like a dog with a bone over this one Lily. Central to your belief is also that you can “not believe”.

So being a Christian (in this instance) is based on holding two contradictory beliefs simultaneously.

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