"All religious belief distills down to faith in utterly unprovable stories."

by Franklin Massey 50 Replies latest jw friends

  • still thinking
    still thinking

    On the way out...

    From my best effort to understand Christian believers on JWN, I have the following understanding:
    God and/or Jesus are nothing but good.
    If there is anything in the Bible that makes Him/them seem bad (approving rape, genocide, murder, slavery, etc.) then we are either misunderstanding it or it is the words of men that misrepresents God/Jesus.

    I understand what you are saying...at you kind of make sense.

    Personally though...I do NOT believe that Jesus was talking about the God of the OT. I believe he is talking about a supreme being that he simply refers to as Father. And he describes him as being Love. Then he goes on to show us, by example what love is.

    I think that there have been many people who have shown us Gods love, but Jesus is one I relate to. I don't fully understand the relationship between him and the entity he calls his father. But Jesus does tell us that his father is our father too. Whether Jesus is specifiacally Gods son or one of his sons as we are I do not know.


    The concept has always been an intrinsic part of me also . . . from as young as I can remember. When I try to divorce myself from it entirely . . . the feeling is not pleasant . . . like a lonliness. The problem I have is connected to your previous puzzling question . . . the need to idolize. I wonder if that is simply motivated to stave off a lonliness.

    I so totally understand what you are saying...it's actually a bit weird how you put what I am thinking into words sometimes.

    This is why I believe that God (in whatever form he really is) is part of us...somehow, we are connected to him..when we disconnect, because of organised religion or other reasons we need to replace it with something else....maybe this is why people create Idols of other people. Or maybe, as you say it is simply a need to help us stave off lonliness.

    If there truly was no God I think we would truly be alone wouldn't we? I really doens't matter how many people we have around us, how much we fill our lives up...we come into this world alone...and we leave it alone...no one can do that journey for us. Sometimes I feel a disconnect with the world, like I am just not part of it, and sometimes I feel fully involved. But to what purpose when those moments are fleeting and you are left with yourself once more?

    I am beginning to believe that we need to KNOW ourselves to know God. Not because we are Gods per se, but because deep within us we have that connection to God and he is a part of us...once we truly know ourselves we begin to know God, we begin to understand others better, and we have peace.

  • Joey Jo-Jo
    Joey Jo-Jo

    I have a problem with faith, it can be used in any religion.

    During the course of the bible, first god only favoured his people, then the gentiles, then Jesus came and uphold the old law + more, then paul came and spoke about jesus instead of jesus, then change the law between gentiles and judaic christians so gentiles were not bound by the old covenant. (this is an issue most atheists who quote the bible dont understand, quoting straight from the ot)

    Now if you refer back to what jesus actually said in matthew he was referring to all. (this is an issue most christians dont get).

  • PSacramento
    Well . . . it probably would in my case. Any convergence between scientific knowledge and claims such as the "truth" of the global flood would get my attention. But sadly . . . there just isn't any. Not yet anyway.

    But what if science found that the global flood was not as described 100% in the bible? what then?

  • designs

    There is scientific evidence of the Flood of the Mediterranean areas when the Bosphorus Strait was breeched around 5600 BC.

  • sizemik
    But what if science found that the global flood was not as described 100% in the bible? what then?

    Interesting question that . . .

    A recent thread cited the discovery of the oldest archeological site in Turkey . . . about 12-14,000 years old. The site reveals a quite different lifestyle than would be possible today . . . evidence of lush vegetation . . . a "garden-like" area of abundance. The site is dated climatically as still in the recession of the last ice age, Melting polar ice as well as glacial ice can create new oceans in low-lying valleys and cataclysmic flooding from build-up and land breach. This could well have given rise to the plethora of flood accounts . . . not just from the mid-east, but around the world. I just found that interesting.

    It discredits the literal Bible world-wide flood acount by inference . . . but at the same time gives support to your hypothesis.

  • PSacramento

    I do not believe that the flood account is a literal GLOBAL flood and I don't think that the writers meant that either, no more than when an ancient writer wrote that Alexander conquered the World or that Rome ruled the world that they meant it ina GLOBAL way.

    The fact that so many historical accounts in that area speak of a Flood(s) and that there is sceintific evidence of "bigger than average" flood(s) in that area, gives credibility to the flood acutally happening.

    And most agree on this, the issue being the wording of the text, is it literal ( its' raining so much that giraffes can drink without bending their necks) or is it literal AND concrete?

    But the point is that evidence doesn't always = proof and that is certaibly the case with pretty much any historical account that we have only the written word for it.

  • wobble

    The title of the thread I agree with. But many an unprovable story has "Truths" in it.

    Of course if you are going to be a Bible literalist you are on ahiding to nothing. It is interesting that interpreting the Bible that way, as all literal truth, did not really take a firmhold until the end of the nineteenth and the early twentieth centuries.

    The motive for moving away from the traditional exegesis was that religionists saw a loss of their power and influence if the new theory of evolution and other Enlightenment thinking took general hold.

    I see nothing wrong with using Parable and metaphor to teach,and I see nothing wrong with a person's holding a faith position, as long as they do no harm to themselves or others.

    What is wrong is trying to force others to believe as you do, or act as you would like because of your beliefs.

    The old saying is apropos:

    "Having a religion is like having a penis, its fine to have one, just don't wave it around in public, or try to force it down my children's throats"

  • sizemik

    Of course . . . many ancient records attribute natural disasters to the work of angry punitive gods.

  • Franklin Massey
    Franklin Massey

    Tammy, thanks for the response. Even if we don't agree, I would have to say that you are the most refreshing Christian I've talked to in quite a while.

  • Band on the Run
    Band on the Run

    I find Bill Maher as a one note, out for spite. Penn of Penn and Teller was on Piers Morgan. HIs points were far more cogent and lacked the bitterness of Bill Maher. I agree with Maher's politics but his three ton truck plying through every one else who disagrees with his view is offputting. Almost any other atheist apologist makes better arguments. He ridicules side items.

Share this