and may you all have peace!
At the outset, I want to say that I know the question was posed to "atheists"... which I am not... but it's an interesting thread and I'd like to comment, if you will permit. If you think I should "butt out," then please, by all means, just disregard and pretend as if I did. Thank you.
I believe that by the passions of two people, I was concieved and created in the womb.
It would be nice if everyone were conceived in that fashion. Unfortunately, that isn't always the case.
Christianity is built on foundations of centuries of evidence that have been proven through prophesies.
As a "christian," I would have to disagree with this assertion, dear Real One. Judaism was built on that foundation, as was the form of religion that we call "christianity." However, TRUE christianity is built on the FAITH of the individual... which is the EVIDENT DEMONSTRATION OF REALITIES... though NOT beheld. What does this mean? That the INDIVIDUAL has PERSONALLY received EVIDENCE... a DEMONSTRATION... of realities (that which IS real, vs. that which is merely perceived as real).
Thus, Noah had FAITH in what he HEARD... and so built an Ark. Abraham had FAITH in what he HEARD... and so left his home to wander toward a new land. Moses had FAITH... in what he SAW and HEARD... and so put following the Christ and leading God's people back to the land of Abraham... before the riches he was bound to receive (as a member of Pharaoh's house) from Egypt. Faith... is NOT blind, dear one!
The problem, howver, lies with us: first, that so-called "christians" go around trying to force others to believe in something/things they themselves cannot explain. Unfortunately, their faith is blind - they don't know (truly) who and what they have their faith in, so they are unable to help others see. But that shouldn't be the case: the TRUE christian will not only explain what the "evidence" was for them, but how the unbeliever can also experience the same (or closely similar) so as to know it for themselves. Thus, while it IS true that we are to walk by faith... and not by sight... such faith is NOT blind - it is not just a fumbling around in the dark. It is walking by that which is spiritual (and I do not mean that in the abstract but in the literal), and thus only unseen by the PHYSICAL eyes; it is VERY evident to, however, and seen by the spiritual (i.e., "celestial") eyes: those of the man we are... on the inside (of our physical bodies). Because we are NOT just our physical bodies, by any stretch. If we were, then losing a limb, or an organ, would diminish us. It does not.
The other part of the problem is that although you can offer to show/help others also see that which is truly visible, 99% of the time they will reject that offer. They do so for three reasons: either they've already been misled, one or more times, and so no longer trust in such a thing (which is TOTALLY understandable and all so-called "christians" need to come down off their self-exalted high stations and recognize this, not with judging or pitying comments, but with balanced and loving consideration)... OR they are purely empirical and so anything outside the physical realm is totally incomprehensible to them (which is also totally understandable, as we currently exist in a very empirical status; it is much more prevalent than that which is "celestial" and so on what basis should these leave off from their "logical" perception and examination of the world? To these, it totally makes NO sense and others should understand that - had WE not had such "evidence" who is to say that would not also be among them at some point?)... OR they are afraid to take a chance and find out; for many reasons, including that perhaps it actually MIGHT happen for them... and then what? Well, then... they'll maybe look/sound/appear as "crazy" as the people they once thought were so. And they can't have that, as there is too much to "lose."
To ridicule anyone for whatever they do/do not believe... is NOT, however, "christian." It is NOT of Christ. True, he condemned the conduct of the scribes and Pharisees... but that was because of their hypocrisy and hate, their fleecing of God's flock, their claim to know when they didn't and see when they were blind. These were misleading people... in the name of God... and he exposed them for what they were and what they were doing. BUT... you did NOT hear him malign the beliefs... or lack of belief... of the nations or the world. He didn't teach by judging or condemning - that was Paul's "style." We are to defend our faith, yes; attacking the faith, or lack thereof, of others, is not the same thing.
Rather, Christ taught... by speaking the TRUTH, setting errors straight... and INVITING people to "come" - not telling them that they weren't worthy of coming because of their beliefs... or lack thereof. OUR job is to MAKE disciples... by teaching them all the things that HE told/taught/tells/teaches us... which "things" are summed up in leading them TO HIM... and manifested by LOVE... so that what occurred with us COULD occur with them (if they truly WISH it to)... and NOT by trying to have folks adhere to the Old Covenant, the "laws" of various churches, religions or societies, or by what's "in the Bible," per se.
"Christians" fail utterly in this regard. Why? Because of always "comparing." Others and their beliefs... to "us" and "our" beliefs. Others and their conduct... to "us" and "ours." We vs. they. "We" do this... because we believe we are right. If one is TRULY right, however, then there is NO NEED to compare oneself with anyone... BUT Christ. For the "perfect" law... is a MIRROR... not a window. And if our comparisons are limite to this, no one else can... or should... be considered a "threat." To anything, including our faith.
I implore you, then, dear Real One, if you TRULY want to know what these (atheists) believe... then LISTEN when they TELL you... and do not contend. Otherwise, the motive for your question was false, not from a pure place, but designed to incite contention. Which does NOT originate from a place of LOVE ("I really want to know/understand), but will actually appear as an ambush or springboard for attack. That... could NOT originate with the TRUE God... and His Christ... but from something and someone entirely different.
jesus, who has no historical evidence other than the bible and those who write about him based on the bible. Hey, many of us here no longer believe the myths of that book
Part of what you say is valid; however, while I, too, do not have my beliefs founded in the Bible, I have to say that I received "evidence" that was NOT "historical" or written in a book. It was actual, real... and occurred. I do not need others to believe it - I am not concerned with opinions of me. What I AM concerned with is the TRUTH, and existing in the truth. I see my situation with many here (and the truth of what has occurred and is occuring with me, but the ridicule and failure to understand) NO different than these feel when speaking with JWs. You cannot MAKE any other person SEE or HEAR... what they do not WANT to see or hear. No matter HOW you write it, speak it, frame it, argue it, debate it, or explain it.
What you have Real One is hearsay and opinion, you have no facts, you do not 'know' that god exists anymore than I 'know' he does not.
While not accepted by courts, however, hearsay CAN be truth. And there are "facts" but most, including most so-called "christians" DENY those facts. I recently had a person "of faith" (???) tell me that he/she had run some of what I shared by others ("rational" people, but apparently "of faith")... and they, too, totally disagreed, stated it could not be.
The FACT is, however, that some receive holy spirit... and by means of the "gifts" of that spirit... can do things (for example, hear spirits). It is the TRUTH... and a FACT. That others don't believe it because THEY can't hear/see/do... or because they cannot yet wrap their heads around the concept and/or the possibility... does not make it untrue or not a fact. It just makes it... unbelievable for them... unless and until some kind of empirival evidence is presented. Unfortunately, empiricalness has to do with the PHYSICAL world... and what I and others are speaking about is of the SPIRIT world. And the two are not the same.
Now, can those who doubt also "transcend" so as to experience the same thing? They absolutely can! It has been offered to many here: some have taken advantage, some have not. Do those who have been successful publish that fact? Not ordinarily. Why? Because of fear... of being ridiculed, thought crazy, not believed. There can be a lot to lose (of this world) if that occurs. Some, however, have no such concern. They are few, however... and so they have the least voice, if any voice at all.
But, my (Shelby's) knowledge that God DOES exist... really is more than that of those who "know" He doesn't. Their knowledge is based on perception: they don't perceive that God exists; therefore, He doesn't. Perceptions are not real. For ME, however, my knowledge is based on an EVIDENT DEMONSTRATION OF REALITY - meaning, something literally occurred... evidenced a reality... although my PHYSICAL eyes/ears did not see/hear it ("though not beheld" [by the physical body]). My SPIRITUAL eyes/ears saw/heard and see/hear it, however, and have ever since.
That folks can't/don't/won't believe it, however, does not make it TRUE.
Again, my apologies if I intruded. I know this thread was not about what christians believe, but I thought it appropriate given the interchanges occurring. If I am out of line, please forgive and, again, just disregard.
I bid you all peace.
A slave of Christ,