JW’s & Atheists - Great (Cultic) Minds Think Alike

by Perry 141 Replies latest watchtower beliefs

  • Elemental

    The bible is a collection of stories. It isn't evidence. How about a parallell to amplify my point? Did George Washington cut down the cherry tree? No. But that story gets passed around as fact. In another 200 years, who knows how many legs this story will grow.

    My point is, miracles, whether they occurred or not, cannot be verified today. Your Christian miracles are exactly the same as miracles found in the Koran. How could they possibly be different? Insisting that your miracles did happen doesn't mean they did... Historical evidence has the virtue of being recognizable by a lack of embellishment. The bible does not pass this test with flying colors....

    Btw, Alexander the Great was never accussed of healing the sick or feeding thousands with a few loaves. What miracles are accredited to him??

    As for the historicity of Jesus, count me as one who believes the man walked the earth, and was a great leader and wise moralist. But he was not a god as far as I am concerned, and there is no evidence of this. Only the writings of his followers, the oldest manuscripts of which are several hundred years removed from when he supposedly was around. That isn't evidence, thats a story. A very embellished story.

    Well, first of all your statements do deserves consideration.

    You are correct that legends can be past down from one generation and be carried altered to the next and it is true that the miracles cannot be verified today. However I would have to respectfully disagree with your view of how much time passed before those "stories" were copied down into the Gospels as the evidence now suggests it was a little as thirty years or less. In fact some scholars now believe that as little as fifteen years went by before the Gospels were pinned down.

    In fact there are several sources that state that the letters of Paul as well as the Gospel of John survived well into the second century (one source says that John's Gospel was in the Church of Eph in the year 326 A.D.)
    In the case of George Washington, it is one thing to say that a story got passed around. It is quite another to say that someone heard the account from President Washington's own mouth. It is exactly that which makes the letters of Paul as well as the Gospels different as these men were there when the events happened.

    We can see this with the letter of First Corinthians.

    There is no doubt by scholars that Paul wrote this and it is considered one of the "undisputed" of his letters (there are eight of them to be exact that scholars have no doubt on) in addition the originals existed well into the second century as I said before so in this case there is no way to say that the passing of time could have effected what was being taught.

    It is in this letter that Paul confesses that he saw Jesus alive after his death.
    So what you have is a person who admits that he is a witness with a letter copied by his own hand. Whether you chose to accept that he really did see Jesus or not is something that I will leave for all of you to decide but there is no way to say that someone was telling a story in Paul's name that was not from him.

  • AllTimeJeff

    Thanks for the update. I am familiar with what scholars say about Paul, and while I know this is what he claimed, it isn't enough for me. For that matter, you, Perry, or anyone else who says that Jesus came to them personally raises more questions in my mind then answers.

    Having said that, I hope you get the peace of mind you desire through your beliefs. I am sure you do....

  • Elemental

    for one do not like labels, atheist, Christian, etc... What I like is reason and logic. I find that the bible does have a lot of wisdom and some things are historically accurate but to say ALL of it is accurate one must reject a lot of historic and scientific fact. Also there are a lot of questionable morals and even a lot of atrocities. Maybe god exist maybe he does not but I must question someones morals, logic and knowledge of facts if this persons is to accept the bible has 'truth'.

    Well, Anti-Christ I would consider you a fool if you did not question it lol! I would never expect anyone to simply accept from blind faith as I do not believe that faith should be blind. If it is blind faith it is not worth believing.

    As for scientific fact, I do not believe that the Bible was ever meant to be a science book. After all exactly how do you explain to a group of sheep herders about DNA, evolution, and other sciences when they could not even read? In addition Genesis is simply too vague to give information about how God brought things into existence. Perhaps he did use macro evolution (which to me would explain how he transformed a staff into a serpent) all the account says is that God brought swarms of living things into the world, it does not say how.

    I also think that the Bible can contain mistakes as I feel from my research that the Christians never saw the books that make the New Testament up as infallible but they saw it more like a historical account of the life of Jesus Christ. I simply think that God inspired the witnesses of the accounts to be honest even if that honesty was not completely accurate. After all if God alters their views of things it no longer becomes a testimony of witnesses does it?

    As for the atrocities, and I would have to think you mean the Canaanites, there IS an answer to that but it gets a little deep and would take time to explain. Perhaps if you are willing I could explain it to you but you would have to be open to the idea and I am not sure (just yet) that you would be. After all, no offence but the name Anti-Christ does not indicate that you think very highly of Christianity.

    By the way I cannnot respond until tomorrow as this is my last post that I am allowed for today.

  • SixofNine

    Plenty of evidence that Paul was a real person. Jesus? Not so much. I guess that slave was greater than his master. Or at least a lot more wordy.

  • drwtsn32

    I love how Perry is so argumentative about the definition of "atheist."

    Sure Perry, you quoted one definition of the word. But in reality "atheist" means different things to different people. Spelling out exactly what someone means when they say they are an atheist is sometimes necessary. You can't shoe-horn everyone who labels themself an atheist into the same box.

    It's crazy that you call someone "grossly dishonest" when they define what the word atheist in respect to their own beliefs.

  • brinjen
    You can't shoe-horn everyone who labels themself an atheist into the same box.

    Bingo! It's a bit like catholicism and the way we once perceived catholics when we were JW's and that old, old line of "well now they're going back to the beliefs and hell fire and the trinity". The real world couldn't give a rats about those doctrines... we were the ones who carried on more about them than anyone else.

    Take a look at the members of any form of belief. It doesn't matter whether you're talking atheism, christian, muslim... anything. The variations of what is taken seriously and what isn't is infinite. That's because while they may all share a common foundation of that belief, theres also an endless combination of personal backgrounds, values and experiences coming into play.

    Everyone has their own set of priorities and processes what they see and hear differently. To tell someone they must be believing in 'xyz' because they believe in 'abc' is the ultimate cult like response. Bit like we were as JW's with catholicism...

  • tympan

    How come Perry hates atheists so much?

    What have they ever done to him?

  • Spook

    To Elemental,

    I happen to agree with you about the numbers argument. My point was clearly given to discredit Perry's flawed use of statistics which he keeps repeating in the face of my numerous disprovings.

    In order for logic to work, you must have a correct premise for if your premise is flawed then your logic will be off.

    In order to prove or disprove God logically you would need all of the information in order to gain a correct premise.

    Sort of. For a conclusion to be logical it must follow from the premises in line with the laws of logic, not the "correct" premise, per say. A premise could be true or false on partial information, but never on full information. An argument like Perry's which does not follow logically from the premises or contains logically false premises is WEAKER than ANY argument drawn logically from ANY premise by virtue of his argument being false in its own context.

    No one has all of the information.

    Therefore no one can say that there premise is completely accurate.

    That's partially true, and is sort of akin to what's known as Phyronic Skepticism. I'm rather partial to this position ("It is impossible to make rational judgements about the metaphysical"), but it has a problem which theists usually point out in response to arguments following Logical Impericism (Ayer). It is a self defeating statement. If it is true that no conclusion can be true, then that conclusion is false. Ipso facto, the converse may be true. Furthermore, this does not at all rule out probabalistic arguments which lead to the conclusion "probably, god does not exist."

    Without a complete premise logic does not work.

    That's not true. The laws of symbolic logic hold regardless of the meaning of the content. Most of the texts you could read on this stuff (not the pop books you'd buy at borders) actually start with chapters and chapters of very basic premises and build from there. The argument from reason I pointed out to Perry earlier, for example, may begin with premises such as "nature is consistent." You could even begin with "there exist human beings" or "sentences contain meanings."

    Therefore you cannot prove or disprove God as you do not have all the information to achieve and accurate premise.

    I disagree with that. If it can be shown that some concept is logically impossible, one can safely say that it is certain this does not exist, such as round squares. I, for example, maintain that no being could posess free will and have omnipotent knowledge of the future. I am therefore sure such a being does not exist as sure as I am that round squares do not exist. Furthermore, if you can show all reasons to believe in a god are based on faulty logic or have other more plausible explanations, you can rationally conclude that probably God does not exist. To be rigorous, I believe unicorns probably don't exist, in technical logic this is different than saying I KNOW unicorns exist. In technical logical I would also say probably evolution occured. Some things are not "truthable" in the way we'd like. This is a rather small issue.

    And I do this because I know that While the best theist philosophers can overcome all current atheistic arguments, the concept of god which emerges at the end is much more akin to desim and it produces a certain moderation in a christians disposition to fully grasp the depth of arguments levied against him. In other words, to make theists tussle with these questions generally reshapes some of their god-concept in a way I find positive even if they don't give up whole idea. They may decide things like...

    1. God is not omnipotent.

    2. There are good reasons not to believe in god, so why not respect the secular.

    3. Other religions have just as much evidence as I do, so therefore we should get along better.

  • Twitch

    So you guys can argue about whether God exists or not...the rest of us are heading to the pub...

    I'm down with that,...;)

  • jws

    Elemental wrote:

    Tell why do you think that he would come to you if you do not want him? You claim that you do not believe in him and yet expect that he is going to somehow give you a return call. If you took that view with me I would not respond to you either.Most athiests are not exactly respectful when it comes to talking about God and then find it odd that that he never came to them. Once again contradictive thinking.

    God is often called father. Suppose you had a son who, for whatever reason, has never met you. Make up whatever scenario you want. Maybe you were a John Doe in a coma. Your son doesn't believe you're a good guy. Might even think you're dead. In any case, doesn't care about you. As the child's father, would you just leave him be? Or would you try to find him. Show him you are still alive. Show him you do care about him. Do you think your child would change their mind about you?

    Sure, it's easy to dismiss somebody you don't really have a connection to, like posters on this board. But God is supposed to love us all. If God is who he's supposed to be, he'd return the call.

    And I'm still waiting. If the complexity of the universe and life on earth proves there is a God, who created that God who is even more complex? Nobody? C'mon! Who's God's God? Can't a single believer answer this? It's a favorite argument among Christians. Look at the complexity, there must be a creator. Are you saying God is simple and happened by chance? Or is your argument full of it?

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