Friday, April 27, 2007

God Hates Fags

Apologies for the use of the f-word, but I’m referring to a certain fringe group that likes to “protest” military funerals because we (I’m writing in the US) have become too tolerant of homosexuals and that will bring God’s wrath upon us. I realize that they are a fringe group and are not representative of all Christians. Thing is, Biblically speaking, they do have a leg to stand on.

What does God say about homosexuality? He is surprisingly clear for a change. One need only consult Leviticus 18:22 (KJV):

“Thou shalt not lie with mankind, as with womankind: it is abomination.”

And Leviticus 20:13 (KJV):

“If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.”

The first quote shows that God sees homosexual sex as an “abomination”. The second quote shows how God believes we should deal with said abomination – we ought to kill them because they brought it upon themselves. See? He’s very clear where he stands and he clearly hates gay people.

The New Testament is nowhere near as clear as the Old Testament on the subject of homosexuality. Sure, you could quote Matthew 15, Mark 7, or 1 Corinthians but it doesn’t have the same zeal as the quotes from Leviticus. If you really want to hate homosexuals, your case is strengthened mightily by the OT.

Do you ever notice that it’s Christian and Muslim groups that have the biggest problem with the gay population? Have you ever seen a Rabbi calling gays an abomination or protesting gay marriage?

Here is why I find the Christian right gay hating thing interesting… When God comes to Abraham, he essentially gives only two rules. Rule number one is to acknowledge that Yahweh is the only God and rule number two is that male children must be circumcised.

That’s it. Just two rules to live by. This is way before God gave a laundry list of rules to his prophet Moe, he’s keeping it simple at this stage. Christians, whether they want to acknowledge it or not, fail to keep rule number one as they worship three distinct stooges – I mean gods. Additionally, circumcision has become optional for Christian born baby boys. These are THE most important commandments and the Christians ignore them.

What else gets ignored? After Jesus’ sacrifice, apparently kosher rules are now out. So, if you’re a Christian, go ahead and have a bacon cheeseburger. Other strange things that can be found in Leviticus (borrowing from http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/abs/long.htm and http://skepticsannotatedbible.com/cruelty/long.html):

"Also thou shalt not approach unto a woman to uncover her nakedness, as long as she is apart for her uncleanness," Don't even look at a menstruating woman. 18:19

"Thou shalt not let thy cattle gender with a diverse kind: thou shalt not sow thy field with a mingled seed: neither shall a garment mingled of linen and woolen come upon thee." No polyester blends for the holy. 19:19

After a woman gives birth, a priest must kill a lamb, pigeon, or dove as a sin offering. This is because having children is sinful and God likes it when things are killed for him. 12:6-8

Both parties in adultery shall be executed. 20:10

Don't do any work on the day of atonement or God will destroy you. 23:29-30

God tells the Israelites to make slaves out of their neighbors and their families. The "heathens" and "strangers" are to be their possessions forever. 25:44-46

So, if you really want to hate homosexuals, you have to hold fast to two versus in a very long book full of really strange and stupid rules. Then you have to pick and choose which rules you want to follow. Bacon cheeseburgers – good! Gays – bad!

Doesn’t exactly make much sense does it? I really have no reason to care about the gay issue. I have exactly zero gay friends so it doesn’t affect me in any meaningful way whatsoever. The only reason it bothers me is because the religious look to their holy book to damn a whole group of people, who historically, have never done anything to harm anyone. They then proceed to discard entire portions of said book and hold fast to the portions that allow this persecution. That’s why it pisses me off.

I do not speak for all atheists, but I do speak for this atheist. Here’s my take on homosexuality – there’s very little difference, morally speaking, in being gay or being left handed. Sure, most of the world is BORN right handed. Society more or less assumes that everyone is right handed. However, a minority of people are born left handed. That’s OK though because left handed people can be good or bad, they just do it writing with their left hands. So long as the lefties of the world work, pay taxes, and don’t hurt anyone – they’re all OK in my book. The same goes for the homosexuals, since I don’t believe in God or any of the stupidity found in the Bible, your all OK with me.

76 comments:

brenden said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bible student said...

Jesus Christ released God’s people from Mosaic Law Covenant. (Romans 10:4) It can still be useful because it gives great insight on God’s thinking.

Christian, may agree with God’s view of homosexuals but need to follow the counsel in Paul’s letter to the Romans 12:17-19: Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Beloved, do not avenge yourselves, but rather give place to wrath; for it is written, “Vengeance is Mine, I will repay,” says the Lord. (New King James Version)

Atheistwager said...

@rudy
All I can say is wtf?

@bible student
You fail to articulate why Christians constantly quote Leviticus to justify their homophobia but most of it no longer applies to them.

brenden said...

Why do Jesus and God (supposedly the same being, when it really gets down to it) have such conflicting ideas? If the god wants to change his mind, why not just say it himself rather than send down an unreliable humanoid to do it?

Atheistwager said...

@rudy

After careful thought and deliberation, your comment will be the first comment I have ever deleted off this blog. Congratulations on being a first.

You do not have to agree with me, you do not have to like me. I only ask that comments be somewhat on topic. If anyone has a real problem with my rule, let me know: atheistwager@gmail.com

Bible student said...

I’m not “The Leviticus Quoting Christians” spokesman but I’ll let you what I think. In an argument, an aggressive strategy, wins points. You have pointed out how strongly Leviticus comes across.

I prefer to use the whole Bible‘s viewpoint. It’s not my place to attack or condone someone else’s behavior. I have enough problems to work on, myself.

brenden said...

@ bible student

Using "the whole Bible‘s viewpoint" would be an acceptable option if the bible actually had one single viewpoint, rather than a series of different viewpoints, many of them conflicting.

I find it interesting that your argument here is "the bible is more assertive and thus more likely to be true". Let me assert something: The bible is a work of fiction. Not assertive enough? THE BIBLE IS A WORK OF FICTION.

How am I now, on the whole assertiveness-is-better sliding scale?

MasterJediDan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
MasterJediDan said...

@ brenden

If the Bible is a work of fiction, please prove it to be fiction. I'm trying to find the answers to life and if you can prove to me that the Bible is a work of fiction I'll believe you.

@ atheistwager

The people from Westboro "Baptist Church" are creepy. I've been to their site before, it's sad how they claim that "God hates you" and such. It's depressing that they picket the funerals of the brave men and women who die for this country every day. Switching subjects, while God did give the Israelites the law in the OT, Jesus Christ's death on the cross for our sins made us free from the law. We are to love others and to hate sin. I don't personally know and gay people, but I don't hate them, I simply hope that they turn from their erroneous ways and ask God for forgiveness. In my opinion people aren't born gay or lesbian. They become that way because a mother or father didn't show them love as they grew up and now they are seeking that love from another person. All in all, good post.

Bible student said...

@brenden
My answer to Atheistwager was that “The Leviticus Quoting Christians” could make more of a splash with “they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.” instead of “Love your neighbor.”

Being the work of one perfect mind, there is no conflict.

Atheistwager said...

@MJD
Respectfully, you do know gay people. They may not be out yet, but there is a percentage of the population that IS gay. I have worked with gay people and all I can say is they are just like the rest of us - some are good people and others not so much. Being gay doesn't make them good or bad, it's just one aspect of who they are.

There is a wealth of scientific evidence that says sexual orientation is not a choice, hence my analogy to left handedness. Believe it or not, lefties used to be persecuted as well because it was thought to be a "mark of the devil". I'm sure you know some lefties and some of them are good, some - not so much.

brenden said...

@ MasterJediDan

There is no need to prove a negative. The bible, as with ANY non-fiction book, needs references, citations, photographs, any number of things to prove that it is telling the truth.

Do you seriously think it is a compelling enough answer to believe in the bible simply because you can't disprove all of it? Do I really need to bring in the celestial teapot analogy?

@ bible student

You cannot verify the content of a book by the perfection of one of its characters.

Bible student said...

@brenden

When you are right, you are right!

The bible can only be disproved by it’s counsel failing. It’s prophesy not coming true. The comfort it’s verses give, falling short.

Have these things happened to you?

I’ve had different results.

Tuba Terry said...

@ Master Jedi:

I've been a Marine for a few years now, so I'm a little muddy on anything more complex than counting to 10 (20 with my boots off), but isn't the burden of proof on your shoulders?

Correct me if I'm wrong here, but a work of fiction has nothing to prove. It's a story, a message, a guideline to point you in the right direction, whatever. A written account of actual events needs proof. If it's a description of what happened, then obviously it needs some supporting evidence, right? If I'm being as logical as I hope I am, this means Brenden doesn't have anything to prove, because you can't prove fiction. You seem to be saying that the bible is fact, and that leads me to believe it's your job to provide verifiable evidence backing that statement.

Don't get me wrong, whether it's fact or fiction, you can still think homosexuality is a terrible scourge defiling mankind. If the bible's fiction, then one could say that when Leviticus was written, it was probably being used to discourage homosexuality in order to promote the survival of the species. On the other hand, if it's fact, they actually *are* evil and will burn in Hell forever for something that only directly effects them.

Tuba Terry said...

My apologies, my previous comment probably came across as excessively spiteful. The point still stands, however. It doesn't really matter whether the bible is fact or fiction, you can still glean from it the lessons and life directions you want to get from it. If it's true, you can take comfort in knowing you've taken the right path. If it's fiction, you can take comfort in the reassurance of thousands of years of tradition.

Atheistwager said...

@MJD

As for Biblical truth... Moses allegedly led the Jews around the desert for 40 years. Side note - this makes him utterly incompetent, seriously. Go look at a map. Look at Egypt. Look at Israel. Look at Egypt. Look at Israel. THEY ARE NOT THAT FAR APART. There is no way it could take 40 years to travel that far, but I digress.

The Bible says they wandered for 40 years and in that time, you would think that they would have left some artifacts behind in the desert, yet there is ZERO archeological evidence of the Exodus. Zero! Ponder that.

Atheistwager said...

@MJD
It's not just Westboro who hates gays. Pat Robertson famously stated that 9/11 happened because the US has been too tolerant of homosexuals.

You claim that Mosaic Law ended when God sent Himself or His Son or both (I'm confused) to be sacrificed. I'm OK with the rule change, but the whole point of the post is that a lot of conservative Christians hate homosexuals and point to Leviticus to justify their intolerance. So does Leviticus apply or doesn't it?

Bible student said...

The God’s Kingdom will return the earth to the paradise as originated. The short lives we live now, will be a distant memory to those who are living forever. When Paul wrote to the congregation in Corinth he preached repentance not punishment.

1 Corinthians 6:9,10 says “Don’t you realize that those who do wrong will not inherit the Kingdom of God? Don’t fool yourselves. Those who indulge in sexual sin, or who worship idols, or commit adultery, or are male prostitutes, or practice homosexuality, or are thieves, or greedy people, or drunkards, or are abusive, or cheat people—none of these will inherit the Kingdom of God.” (New Living Translation)

Those who wanted a long life heeded this piece of advice.

God didn’t change his mind and no one was threatened with eternal torture. Notice that he did not empower anyone to enforce His law.

It seems that the “The Leviticus Quoting Christians” are waging another one of those unjust wars, authorized by man.

Miracle said...

@Mr. Wager
*applauds

Well done with this one. Hit the nail on the head with this one as fundamental Christians begin to pick and choose which OT laws they still follow. There's really no justification for it.

Miracle said...

@Bible Student

I don't know what school/college/university/seminary you are studying, but you need a 101 on the "Kingdom of God". I've got a biblical studies degree at a wesleyan college and when Jesus or Paul refers to Kingdom of God it aint talking heaven beyond us. Its talking a revolution for now.

Also, you have homosexual translated wrong in your 1 corinthians passage. Actually I should say incomplete. It is homosexuals who group together as sexual worship in ancient pagan religions. It has nothing to do with truly loving one man for another. Its about the twisted pagan religions.

darren said...

MJD
"In my opinion people aren't born gay or lesbian. I simply hope that they turn from their erroneous ways and ask God for forgiveness"

Right there, in your statement, is biblical religious intolerance and ignorance. You are brainwashed by a fictional book.
You say choose? How is it possible?
Society is undisputably heterosexual friendly.
It's a damn site more complicated to live a gay life than a heterosexual life. Why would anyone in their right mind choose to be gay?
Biblical Truth... God made gay people and then it mercillesly condemns them to eternal torture.
Biblical god = Schizophrenic Psycotic Killer.
Religous people who believe in this book also support it. The believers are all accountable for it's attrocious effects on humanity.
I ask religous people "Deny this book and support humanity".

Bible student said...

@Miracle

I’m slow on the pick up. What did they teach you about God’s Kingdom?

I’m using http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/ to look up and copy scriptures to my posts. Do you see a translation/version that fits better.

If not there, which are you most comfortable with?

Miracle said...

@biblestudent

I actually love Bible Gateway. It has nearly every decent translation [but the NRSV]. The religious homosexual thing is actually something one would pick up if they knew Koine Greek and 1st Century anthropology. The truth isn't plain as day.

Also, the Kingdom of God idea is Jesus basically saying [this is incomplete because the idea is too big to write in a comment] that God's ideal creation will return where people are loving, compassionate and considerate of one another. Peace on Earth will come as we try to spread the Kingdom/Reign of God [compassion towards others and relationship with God] throughout the world. Very much like a revolution.

A very good book about "The Kingdom of God" idea is Brian McLaren's The Secret Message of Jesus.

Bible student said...

@Miracle

NRSV online = http://bible.oremus.org

brenden said...

@ Bible Student

Conversely, in reply to a comment made earlier today, the bible can only be proved by its prophesy coming true. Until then, it remains unproven. This is how things work.

If we (secularists) were inclined to believe things until proven otherwise (like yourself), then any conceivable idea must be taken as fact until there is something concrete against it. It looks like I do have to bring in the teapot.

Bertrand Russel said the following:

"If I were to suggest that between the Earth and Mars there is a china teapot revolving about the sun in an elliptical orbit, nobody would be able to disprove my assertion provided I were careful to add that the teapot is too small to be revealed even by our most powerful telescopes.

But if I were to go on to say that, since my assertion cannot be disproved, it is an intolerable presumption on the part of human reason to doubt it, I should rightly be thought to be talking nonsense. If, however, the existence of such a teapot were affirmed in ancient books, taught as the sacred truth every Sunday, and instilled into the minds of children at school, hesitation to believe in its existence would become a mark of eccentricity and entitle the doubter to the attentions of the psychiatrist in an enlightened age or of the Inquisitor in an earlier time."

Does this help to illustrate the absurdity of believing something until proven that it DOESN'T exist? Each time our technology increases to the ability to see such a teapot, the argument adjusts the teapot - it becomes invisible, it moves faster, it changes colour like a chameleon.

As we discover more about the universe, those things attributed to a god creating them become more obviously self-sufficient and those bent on keeping the god alive simply make up new things about it that transcend the current ability to detect. It has gotten to the point where most Christian arguers have resorted to saying things like "because He wishes it to be so" or "Because he is perfect, such contradictions do not apply"

MasterJediDan said...

@ darren

I didn't say that gay or lesbian people choose to be that way. What I am saying is this: We all have a longing desire for love/acceptance from someone else of our own sex, which normally comes from our parents. Now, if someone didn't receive that love, they are likely to continue searching for it. They may find it in friends, or meet someone who sincerely cares about them and find that acceptance. Sadly, some people don't find this love/acceptance in others and their desire and longing for it drives them into becoming gay or lesbian. I don't want to seem intolerant of them, they are people just like you and me, but their desire for acceptance has taken them in the wrong direction. I haven't been brainwashed by a book I haven't yet accepted as true. I'm still trying to find the answers.

@ everyone else

Thanks for the feedback. I sincerely do appreciate it in my quest for the answers. I would like to point out a couple of things. Atheistwager, I don't really think the law in Leviticus applies to us anymore, because according to the Bible we have been set free from the law by Jesus' death. However, the NT (in one of the gospels, I'll look it up later) does address homosexuality, saying that it is an abomination. My viewpoint is that Christians should be kind and compassionate towards homosexuals (show them acceptance and love), rather than preaching fire and brimstone at them. To address brenden, I'd just like to say that I don't see any citations, references, or photographs proving evolution.

darren said...

MJD
"In my opinion people aren't born gay or lesbian"

That is the same as saying "In my opinion sexuality is a life choice"

"I simply hope that they turn from their erroneous ways and ask God for forgiveness"

You hold the bibles opinion, and with absolutley zero factual evidence, that homosexuality is bad - Brainwashed.

I suggest you go meet some gay people and ask them
"Is being gay a choice?"
Mounting scientific evidence suggests that your sexuality is genetically hard coded.

Your argument, though generalising somewhat, also suggests people have no choice. You cannot choose your parents and if they abuse you such that it affects your sexuality (I do believe in extreme circumstances it can be the case) then you still have no choice. Since god made your abusing parents, and you, then God made you gay.
According to the bible you will be punished by "god" because "god" made you gay. Bible god set you up for failure, how nice.

Anyway I expect you are happily content in your sin free heterosexual life so no matter.

brenden said...

@ Master Jedi Dan

Observe thus:
http://www.gate.net/~rwms/EvoEvidence.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Horseevolution.png
http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/homs/

There is heaps and heaps of evidence for evolution. There is no evidence for creation.

Bible student said...

Plenty of Bible prophecy has been fulfilled. Isaiah named the King who would defeat Babylon and set the exiled Jews free, 150 years beforehand (Isaiah 44:28). Every Messianic prophecy was fulfilled, including things that Christ could not control, like where he was born, (Micah 5:2) and what happened when he was hanging dead (Ps 34:20).

Really, very little has not been fulfilled, at least once.


The motive for any creator, can be said to be "because he/she wishes it to be so."

“He causes to become” is supposed to be the meaning of the Hebrew word Yahweh.



per·fect adj. 1. Lacking nothing essential to the whole; complete of its nature or kind. 2. Being without defect or blemish.

I think this definition fits our God. I have a different argument. Because he is perfect, there is no contradiction.

The other thing: With all this evidence, why do we still call it the “theory of evolution”?

travelling_cat said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
kitty said...

@ bible student

You need to look into and try and understand that a scientific theory is not merely on a par with an unproved hypothesis.

Gravity, like evolution, is still a theory, you could not believe it and test it by jumping off a cliff and see if you didn't actually fall to a horrible death.

But I wouldn't recommend it.

http://www.bringyou.to/apologetics/p67.htm is funny - it attacks the "theory of gravity" the same way evangelicals attack the "theory of evolution"

Miracle said...

@brendan, & MJD

First to MJD and Brendan, Evolution and Creation are not mutually exclusive. Evolution just says that things have evolved through natural selection and progression. Evolution is true on many levels, including our own birth. We're tadpoles then we evolve into babies. There's nothing wrong with it. Biblical Creation in its first passage says that God created the world. The point wasn't how it was created, but that God did it. Therefore, we have a mutually compatible system: God created the world through evolution. The problem comes when some Christians overanlyze the Creation story and try to make a theory of how it works or others try to find an alternative "Big Bang" to explain the start. Creationism in that sense is days old milk. Big Bang is also equivalently just an assumption. They both are mislabelled as "Theories"; hypothesis maybe.. more dream.

Brenden, it is funny you quote Bertrand Russell. Very clever, I wish I knew some Dawkins quotes :). Anyway, the argument works for a teapot that has to evolve to stay unprovable, but it doesn't work for God. There's nothing right now that can disprove or prove God. Maybe certain perceptions of Him/her/it/whatever get evolved, but not Him. As atheists or Faithful, we both have to admit proving or disproving God is out of the picture.

Miracle said...

@kitty..

I forget what pioneer postmodern came up with the thought, but the idea is that the theory of gravity is justified on past experiences. We have faith that an apple would fall again, but really there is a chance that it would begin revolving around the Earth.

zestycrustacean said...

@ Bible Student

Regarding your question of why evolution is still called a theory, I suggest you read my second post on the "God Can Learn From Nobel" thread.

superzombie said...

I want to address the concept "God hates".

The idea of a godhead (Yaweh, Zeus, Odin, Vishnu, etc.) having feelings wasn't always laughable to me. I grew up in an Apostolic church family in America. That idea became laughable when I learned the word "personification" in middle school.

Personification means "the attribution of a personal nature or character to inanimate objects or abstract notions". Giving human qualities and traits to inanimate/imaginary things. It's a literary term. For my entry, we'll say literary is synonymous with stories and story-telling.

Ok. Human traits--- feelings. Why would a godhead have feelings? They are sporadic, fleeting, influential, etc. That for humans is good/bad. For an imaginary godstooge, that is weak and so is the religion and subsequently so are the followers.

But wait. What about the story? You have to make it attractive to the audience. Hmm...

The idea of any god having feelings became silly (and reasonable actually) when I learned the concept of "down to earth".

Satire of two ancient history authors:
HUMAN AUTHOR 1: Let's make humans be able to relate to a god. Let's make him connected to earth by having elemental control (for fear, of course!) and a broken family (because divorces will get really popular later on).
HUMAN AUTHOR 2: Lightning?
HUMAN AUTHOR 1: Yes! Genius!
HUMAN AUTHOR 2: Umm... an illegitimate son?
HUMAN AUTHOR 1: Brilliant! Let's make his son hang out with us humans. Our god should be down to earth.
HUMAN AUTHOR 2: What should we name our god?
HUMAN AUTHOR 1: They'll figure it out later.

@ MJD and Biblestudent:
Was my satire about Yaweh/Jesus or Zeus/Heracles? Answer: Trick question! It was about Zeus/Jesus.

I trailed off a bit (like a lot of writers of ANY book I imagine). But still, personification--- it obviously works (for sales). Case and point, I'm an atheist and I bought the Norse Edda.

Bible student said...

@superzombie

You hope God has a sense of humor. He probably does since mankind was created with his qualities.

superzombie said...

@ biblestudent

"You hope God has a sense of humor".

What are you talking about? I have no thoughts like that. For clarity on where I stand:

1- You and I stand on opposite sides of a bridge.
2- Your side of a bridge operates in faith and belief. Your side chooses to believe in a god for whatever reason.
3- My side of the bridge operates in logic, reason, rhetoric and Jameson whiskey. My side chooses not to believe in a god for whatever reason.
4- All of this is ok with me.

According to your faith, what difference does it really make for you, in the short term or long term, if your godhead has a sense of humor or not if you're being a good little saint?

According to my nonfaith, what difference does it make for me if your godhead has a sense of humor or not since I don't share your faith?

According to you, what difference does it make for your god whether he/she/it is defended or not against blasphemers by mere humans since, according to your faith, there is a god and he/she/it is god?

Bible student said...

@superzombie

You’re easily roused, but more focused, in your later post. Thank you.

If I slandered your mother, you would hopefully defend her. I am closer to my God than my parents. So I naturally speak up when I here the trash-talk.

You applied “inanimate/imaginary things” to a person. Yes, God has a personality. Logic and reason dictate that you either research or recall from your youth, one of the scriptures that mention how He feels (Genesis 6:6, Proverbs 27:11, Zechariah 2:8). It makes better rhetoric.

God does not need me to defend him, but since this is a discussion, leaving “imaginary godstooge, that is weak and so is the religion and subsequently so are the followers” unchallenged, is bad sportsmanship.

God hasn’t had anything to say in nearly two millennium. Since then, He has been well represented, or not. I thought I read that on one of the Atheist's Wager pages that blasphemy was the unforgivable sin, and it’s not. The apostle Paul was one (1 Timothy 1:13), but he’s doing fine now. There’s still hope!

MasterJediDan said...

@ brenden

So there is no evidence for creation. None. Then why do countless world-renown scientists such as Michael Behe believe in creation? They must have serious evidence for it or they would not believe what they believe. I refer you to Michael Behe's work on irreducible complexity. It puts a serious flaw into the theory of evolution.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Irreducible_complexity

Michael Behe has not been "brainwashed" by the Bible, he believes in a God as Creator of the universe but does not believe the Bible to be true.

superzombie said...

@ biblestudent

Allow me to help your post. (corrections in bold)

"You’re easily roused, but more focused, in your later post. Thank you.

If I slandered your mother, you would hopefully defend her. I am closer to my God than my parents. So I naturally speak up when I here the trash-talk.

You applied “inanimate/imaginary things” to a god whom I believe is person. Yes, I believe there is a God and I also believe he/she/it has a personality. Logic and reason dictate that you either research or recall from your youth, one of the scriptures that mention how , according to my faith, He feels (Genesis 6:6, Proverbs 27:11, Zechariah 2:8). It makes better rhetoric.

I believe that God does not need me to defend him, but since this is a discussion, leaving “imaginary godstooge, that is weak and so is the religion and subsequently so are the followers” unchallenged, is bad sportsmanship.

I have faith that God hasn’t had anything to say in nearly two millennium. Since then, I believe He has been well represented, or not. I thought I read that on one of the Atheist's Wager pages that blasphemy was the unforgivable sin, and it’s not. I believe that there was The apostle Paul and I also believe that he was one (1 Timothy 1:13), but he’s doing fine now, according to my faith. I believe There’s still hope!"

kitty said...

@ Miracle

There's also the Heisenberg uncertainty principle - but I wouldn't rely on that if I wanted to dig a hole.

From Wikipedia:

"The word theory has a number of distinct meanings in different fields of knowledge, depending on their methodologies and the context of discussion.

In common usage, people often use the word theory to signify a conjecture, an opinion, or a speculation. In this usage, a theory is not necessarily based on facts; in other words, it is not required to be consistent with true descriptions of reality. True descriptions of reality are more reflectively understood as statements that would be true independently of what people think about them.

In science, a theory is a mathematical description, a logical explanation, a verified hypothesis, or a proven model of the manner of interaction of a set of natural phenomena, capable of predicting future occurrences or observations of the same kind, and capable of being tested through experiment or otherwise falsified through empirical observation. It follows from this that for scientists "theory" and "fact" do not necessarily stand in opposition. For example, it is a fact that an apple dropped on earth has been observed to fall towards the center of the planet, and the theory which explains why the apple behaves so is the current theory of gravitation."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scientific_theory

Jason said...

Logical. To the point. In plain English. I really enjoy reading your thoughts on Christianity. Keep up the great work and I'll continue to read!

brenden said...

@ MasterJediDan

A handful of scientists believe in creation, and they get this almost entirely from the bible. I'll put it this way: If it were not for the bible, those people would not come to the conclusion that the earth is only a few thousand years old. Those who think that the universe was just begun by a god, well, they're usually deists.

Irreducible complexity has one flaw that debunks it entirely - evolution is not about making things more complicated. It is about making things more efficient to suit the environment.

Something may be irreducibly complex now, yes. This is because it used to be more complex, a different kind of complex that was reducible. Evolution builds up a form of scaffolding - with this scaffolding in place, the main organism evolves to be as complex as allowed by the scaffolding. Once the organism is build, it gets to the stage where it could operate without the scaffolding so that is eventually removed.

The end result is an organism that looks like it couldn't have been built from the ground up - it wasn't. It is the streamlined version of a more complex organism before it.

Bible student said...

@superzombie

Write your own post, your qualifiers didn’t help mine. Quit calling Him she/it. He says He.

For clarity on where I stand:

1- You and I disagree.
2- You choose not to believe in God for whatever reason.
3- I operate in logic, reason, rhetoric, faith and love. I choose to believe in God because I am tired of being deceived by others.
4- All of this is ok with me.

I’d like to share an experience related to me by a reliable source. A lawyer, reflecting on his mistake wrote to his younger friend, “though I was previously a blasphemer and a persecutor and had been insolent in outrage. Yet mercy was shown me, because I had acted ignorantly, not having as yet believed”

Please forgive, though it’s taken out of context, I think the point comes through.

P. S. My friends love the truth too. Come join us!

brenden said...

@ Bible student

This discussion is about one particular type of god, not necessarily your masculine Judeo-Christian one. Any god or gods are referred to as he/she/it.

You operate on rhetoric and anecdotal evidence. If this keeps you going, then fine, but your lawyer friend writing a letter doesn't make the religion any more valid.

If you also use any form of logic and reason in your beliefs, then you could really take this conversation places by using some of it.

Bible student said...

@brenden

How many gods do you have? I’m only familiar with one. You can call yours what you want.

The top of this page quotes my “masculine Judeo-Christian” God.

My “lawyer friend” is Paul. The excerpt is 1 Timothy 1:13 (Weymouth New Testament). All referred to in the previous post. Glad you asked.

Personal experience (yours or someone else’s) is a great teacher.

MasterJediDan said...

@ brenden

You're not getting the point of irreducible complexity. It is irreducible. You can't take it and go back to another "complex" stage before it to explain evolution.

And to put another question out there. If scientists are sure that our universe expanded out of a cosmic egg or speck or whatever you would like to call it, where did that come from?

Miracle said...

@kitty

agreed

Molly said...

@ MGD

http://www.talkdesign.org/faqs/icdmyst/ICDmyst.html

If you really wanted to understand why IC is false, you could have just googled it. But there is a good place to start.

Secondly, 400 or so years ago, this really brilliant scientist was arrested by the church for daring to believe the world was heliocentric. At that time, the technology wasn't advanced enough to understand the universe, so everyone "believed" what the church told them. Now we can easily see that the Earth rotates around the Sun.

No, scientists may not have the answers for everything. Yet. Unlike religion, science has to start from scratch and empirically prove every step along the way.

superzombie said...

@ biblestudent

No, I don't think I'll quit calling him/her/it a he/she/it just because you believe "He says He".

I am very glad that you realize that you choose to believe. It's a sad affair when anyone of any faith can't admit that they choose to believe.

Share an experience related to you? Ha! So when I read the canon of Dr. Seuss (The Cat in the Hat) to my little niece, am I sharing an experience related to me?

"P. S. My friends love what we believe is the truth pertaining to him/her/it too. Come join us!"

No thanks, biblestudent, I have no need nor want for a godfink.

MasterJediDan said...

@ molly

Yes, thank you for the comment. Science does have to prove everything along the way. Which is why evolution has problems, because it disobeys the laws of nature. For instance, it disobeys the law of cause and effect. What caused our "cosmic egg" to expand into the universe? According to evolutionists, it just happened. This clearly contradicts the law of cause and effect. Another point: The second law of thermodynamics states that order is never the product of disorder. According to this law (which has been tested again and again and bee proved true), the cosmic egg expanding into a perfect universe could not have happened. Finally, life has never been created from non-life. Scientists have spent decades trying to do this, and have failed every time. Remember though, that scientists perform these experiments in their nice little laboratories, while the conditions of the early earth were much more harsh than what is inside a lab. So if scientists haven't even been able to prove that life can be created from non-life, it is very improbable that life was able to be created from non-life in the conditions of the early earth. To end, I'd like to ask something else. If the universe really was formed from a "cosmic egg", then where did that come from?

Tuba Terry said...

@MJD:
(So far, everything you've asked about evolution has been answered here more eloquently than I can:
http://www.talkorigins.org/origins/faqs-qa.html

And in the specific case of Behe, read http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/behe.html. From the TalkOrigins FAQ: "The quality of an argument is not determined by the credentials of its author. Even if it was, a number of well-known creationists have questionable credentials. Furthermore, many creationists have engaged in dishonest tactics like quoting out of context or making up references.")

Evolution does not try to answer the origins of life. It's confusing because it starts at the very next step, how that first life changed into what we see today. For the scientific search for the origins of life, see Abiogenesis. It is "the field of science dedicated to studying how life might have arisen for the first time on the primordial young Earth."

Irreducible Complexity is just a scientifically-worded way of saying "I don't understand how something came to be, so rather than furthering my understanding and investigating further, I'll just say a 'higher intelligence' had to create it." It's a clever way of inserting faith into science, and it's been done before in several different guises.

I'm of the opinion that when people say "Science and Faith are not mutually exclusive" (or something more specific, like evolution and creation), they are leaving out the most important part, "but they are not compatible." You can combine the two to create your own viewpoint however you want, but you cannot use scientific explanations for faith and vice versa and still call yourself intellectually honest.

Faith is just that, belief without the requirement of evidence. Many have faith that they will go to Heaven after they die, they have faith that a higher power listens to their prayers, or whatever, and they do this all without needing to prove it and without evidence for it. Trying to "prove your faith" with scientific claims denies your faith entirely, as science is the ultimate skepticism. The truly faithful will never have to justify their belifs with any outside authority or evidence.

Science, on the other hand, requires evidence. Every valid scientific claim is (or will be eventually if the tools don't yet exist to test it) verifiable in some way. Skepticism must be one of your highest priorities as a scientist. A hypothesis is the closest a scientist can get to "faith", but the first thing one does after coming up with a hypothesis is attempt to test it, so even then, it's not really very "faithful." Of course, you can trust previously avaliable information, but if new, verified data presents itself, you have to be willing to let go of what you previously thought of as "true". The Pluto issue is a good example. Astronomers found objects larger than Pluto in our solar system, so they'd either have to stop calling Pluto a planet, or give planetary names to all these other things. They didn't say "well, Pluto's been a planet since I was a kid, so we can't change that now", they accepted the evidence and adjusted accordingly.

As for my own answers to "How did life start?" or "How did the universe begin?", I have to answer with a solid "I don't know" and nobody else knows yet either. At this point, we probably don't quite have the technology to create our own life, so testing the hypotheses on that subject is a failure-ridden issue. We're nowhere near having the technology to test any hypotheses about the origin of the universe. Anything we come up with is just an idea, and as technology improves, we can refine and focus our ideas until such point as we can test them. For now, all I can honestly say is "I don't know" because I'm an Atheist. As a believer, you could say "I believe God created the life and universe" until science can catch up and provide an explination. Well, you can say whatever you want, but that seems like the most logical thing to do...

brenden said...

@ MasterJediDan

I understand irreducible complexity. I don't think you understood my post: I just very clearly described to you how something that appears "irreducibly complex" can get there through a series of reducibly complex steps.

Your other point, although unrelated to evolution - scientists are not certain that the big bang happened at all. Science is not about certainty. Dr Hawking is even changing his mind about it. The Big Bang is the merely the most logical conclusion that can be made from the available evidence.

Conversely, if you're so sure an infinitely complex god just made it all, and are not willing to change your mind once presented with alternative evidence, where did he/she/it come from?

Molly said...

@ MGD

First, the "cosmic egg" has nothing to do with evolution. Big Bang theory is not evolution. In fact they are two different areas of science.

Second, as I said before, we don't understand yet how exactly the universe began. I've said that before. And, as I've said before, a mere 400 years ago, the notion that the Sun was the center of our world was highly controversial. What I can't understand about you is how it is easier to believe that a god created all of this than it is too believe that we might need another hundred years to understand it. We are not at the end of knowledge accumulation. You're surrounding by claiming "god" did all of this simply because we can't currently describe it.

Third, the 2nd law of thermodynamics is totally unrelated to evolution and anyone who tells you it is, is wrong. It is that simple. Simply go Wiki the 2nd law. It CLEARLY states that it applies ONLY to "isolated" or "closed" systems. You cannot possibly argue that the universe or our life system is "closed."

Fourth, about creating the life from non life see my second comment. If you want to give up on advances in science then you should pack it up, move in Amish, go back to believing the world is flat, and certainly stop using the internet. You're young, so I bet you use the internet (email/IM) for a lot of your communication. Would you have wanted scientists to just say "eh, snail mail works peachy, why create anything else?"

MasterJediDan said...

@ tuba terry
Thanks for the insight. :)

@ molly

Well then, if our universe isn't "closed", as you say, why don't we ever see order come out of disorder on earth?

@ brenden

To address your argument about where God came from: God is greater than the laws He created. If He isn't, then He can't be God, because the creation can't be greater than the Creator. According to the Bible, God never had a beginning, He just was. To address the point more clearly, let's say that the God of the Bible was created by another god. This god could also have been created by yet another god. And then that god could have been created by yet another god. You see, the list could keep going on and on. One way or another, someone or something would have had to "always been" present. I'm interested to hear that some evolutionists are refuting the big bang theory. So, in the end, we could have been created by any number of things. We could have been created by a "cosmic egg" that was "always just there" that expanded into the universe. Or, we could have been created by a divine being who always existed. Or, we could have been created by a race of aliens who have always existed and are very advanced and decided to create another species. So to conclude, we were created by something that was "always there".

Molly said...

@ MGD

I have no idea what you're talking about. I see order come out of disorder all the damn time. For instance, my kitchen was disorderly this morning and then my boyfriend cleaned it and it became orderly.

MasterJediDan said...

@ molly

Yes, thank you :) . You have just proven my point. The order didn't come from disorder by itself, which is what the second law of thermodynamics refutes. It became orderly through the intervention of another being - your boyfriend - because he cleaned it up. Which is why I don't see the universe coming into order by itself (i.e. the earth is at a perfect distance from the sun, we have just the right amount of oxygen for us to survive on earth, etc.). It required intervention by another being - in my case, God - so that it could become orderly.

Molly said...

@ MGD

It's called a joke there sparky. My point was that I have no idea what the hell you're talking about with your "order from disorder" or how that is even relevant.

robustyoungsoul said...

This blog is great. The comments remind me of my last year in high school!

AW - Great writing as always. Keep that edge, I gave up trying to discuss this sort of thing with people a long time ago.

brenden said...

@ MasterJediDan

Some points I have to make at this juncture:

* Evolution is totally unrelated to the big bang. Let me reiterate. EVOLUTION HAS NOTHING TO DO WITH THE BIG BANG. Stop saying "evolutionists believe" in regards to it.

* There is no 'order from disorder', there's simply a rearrangement of disorder. What might be seen as order somewhere actually causes disorder somewhere else.

* Read up on the anthropic principle. There are trillions of planets, this one happens to be good for the development of life, thus life. It was not created for us, we are simply a product of its coincidental situation.

* The universe (by definition, 'everything that exists anywhere') could have been started by something that was always 'just there' - say, for example, a singularity. This does not in any way lead itself to the conclusion that the 'something' was the christian god or even sentient. You tell us that the universe can't have just 'happened', but you're perfectly content with telling us that a god just 'happened'. Please take a moment to appreciate the irony.

* You are talking about both the second law of thermodynamics, and an instantaneously creating deity. Please pick one.

* I put a lot of work into my irreducible complexity debunk and you've almost completely ignored it.

MasterJediDan said...

@ brenden

Sorry about the irreducible complexity, I kind of just decided to move on and leave that point alone since I don't know enough about it. I did go to the links you referenced and read the info. I'm kind of confused here now though, if evolutionists don't believe in the big bang, then what do they believe in in terms of how the world began? Or do they believe in the big bang and it's not a part of the evolutionary theory? I'm not saying that God "just happened", I'm saying that He was always there.

Miracle said...

@brenden

you've led me to an interesting thought with your last comment with MJD. Whether big bang, Judea/Christian/Muslim God, or Hindu Brahma, there must've been a point that something "just happened". In my conclusion whatever this "just happened" was has to be considered our God - in the idea as God = Creator not God = Personal Deity. I see then that it is impossible to say you are an atheist. Because whatever it is/was that brought life into this universe is our creator God.

Just a thought...

Molly said...

@ Brenden

Brilliant.

Molly said...

@ Miracle

Or how about you say "science hasn't quite gotten the explanation for this but since they have figured out a lot of other shit, I'll let them work on it" instead of "OMG THERE IS NO ANSWER RIGHT THIS INSTANT and therefore it is god!"

Miracle said...

@molly
well one is putting faith into science at is God, which is fine with me. But, for atheists whom hate the idea of faith, that sure would put you in a pickle. You'll have to admit that choosing would be a matter of faith, reason a little, but mostly faith.

Also, ultimately there has to be a first cause. Whatever this first cause is or whatever "just happened" should be determined to be God. Lets say something did push the big bang into motion or something created God then that something should be considered the supreme being. I understand that I'm human and can't reason out everything for whatever reason, but I just don't see how one could explain everything without a "first cause" or just happened.

Paul said...

I know homophobic atheists. I also know gay-friendly Christians, and a gay pastor.

Tha's about all I have to say about that. Think about it.

Molly said...

@ Miracle

I think you are confusing the faith and confidence. I have confidence in scientists to find the answers to the origins of life because they have an amazing track record scientific advancement. I have confidence that the Boyfriend is going to remember my birthday because he has every year. Atheists generally reject the notion of blind faith, not believe in something where there is a positive track record.

@ Paul

I'm sure you can think of single examples of both. But generally speaking Atheists are comfortable with homosexuality and religion persons generally dislike it.

kitty said...

@ Paul

The difference between a homophobic atheist and a homophobic christian is the atheist doesn't have a book to wave around and the threat of eternal damnation.


@ Molly

I'm not sure you can say in general religious people are homophobic, but certainly there seem to be a far greater proportion of homophobic religious people than homophobic non-religious. Personally I haven't met a non-religious person who was homophobic, but I may not have met a representative sample.


In general it seems to me that christians have to pick and choose what they believe because the bible is so damn contradictory. And what people pick and choose says a lot about them. I know a particularly annoying one of the variety "contraception is sinful" refused to castrate himself even when I cited chapter and verse. Shame...

Miracle said...

@ Molly

I'm sorry but you've made a very overgeneralized statement about the homosexuality issue. Of course there is a dominating voice within the church against homosexual practices, but I wouldn't say that most atheists are communists. They are the same accusations. You COULD say that most Christians that you know are against homosexuality.

Also, you've turned confidence and faith into mere semantics. I have just as much reason to have confidence in God as you do in science. If you want to leave it up to humanity's track record then I don't think you could have confidence in it. While science has accomplished alot, it still can't tell us if an egg is healthy or not. I'm sorry, but all you've done was substituted the word confidence for faith. Confidence/faith in something that hasn't been 100% proven to be so. Really, in semantic terms, you're not even talking confidence or faith. You are talking hope in science.

Molly said...

@ Miracle

That isn't over generalized. The mainstream sections of the "big three" (Christianity/Judaism/Islam) believe that homosexuality is immoral. Most Hindus also. I'm not saying every religious person is Fred Phleps.

You say so yourself "there is a dominating voice within the church." Atheism and communism aren't even relevant to the discussion.

It isn't semantics. You simply refuse to see a difference and therein lies the fundamental difference between atheists and religious persons.

brenden said...

@ Miracle

You could argue that the beginning, whatever that was, could be considered 'god'. If there was a beginning. However, that could just as easily (in fact, far more easily) be considered a deist (god made it all, no longer intervenes or necessarily cares) or pantheist (god IS the universe) belief. Practically speaking, atheists are only against theism - those other two are so indistinct from no god at all that they're hardly worth arguing.

@ MasterJediDan

Evolutionists believe in evolution. That's it. Some of them believe in the big bang, some of them believe in creation, some just don't know what to believe. Modern Catholicism accepts evolution.

Miracle said...

@brenden

I was thinking along the lines of agnostic but deistic and pantheistic also applies. Either way, don't you have to admit that there is a beginning which/whom created?

@MJD
Most Protestant Christian denominations also accept evolution as a theory.

brenden said...

@ Miracle

No, you certainly do not have to agree that the beginning was created. The moment you do that, you only lead to the next question: what created that?

The beginning is thought of as exactly that: the beginning. There is no 'created' because that implies a point of time before time existed.

The moment you say that it was all created by something else, you void it being a beginning at all. All you do is change the term 'beginning' so it includes the space before the existence of whatever you're claiming started it all.

Daniel said...

I don't want to ramble too much but I wanted to quickly comment on the blog as well as some of the comments. Some of the hate I read here is really based on a twisted understanding of the bible. The law of Moses was supposed to be the perfect law of justice and love of God. It was an earthly reflection of the truth of God that being his love and his justice. His love because the blood sacrifices of animals were acts of reminder of sin and of the covering of sin through the death of the animal, which in the future God would himself pay for all the sins of mankind with his own blood so that all who believe would have their sins totally forgiven. Now the law reflected God's justice because God will punish sin. Every single act and thought of humans will be judged and the just punishment will be had. Now in the end there are two just resolutions for our sinful nature. The first resolution took place when Jesus suffered and died. For those who believe, that is their resolution and their sins have been paid in full. For the ones who do not belive in that, the resolution of their sinful acts is placed on themselves, with eternal separation from God. This in fact is just because rejection of God is what an unbeliever does with their unbelief. So they will get exactly what they wanted. But of course for every choice there is a consquence and I think you unbelievers out there need to be darn sure what you beleive or not believe in because it is the most serious choice you will ever make. Please read the bible from beginning to end. And if you read it then please read it again. God is not schizophrenic. The bible has a point and it does not waver or change. Read about prophecy and compare them to other non biblical so called prophets. Compare what the bible says and archeological findings. At this point, no one in history has disproven the bible. And there are tons of evidence that suggests the book is telling the truth. Please guys research and be knowledgable as much as possible.

Tom said...

The New Testament says this on the Old Law (Matthew 5)

5:17 - “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I did not come to destroy but to fulfill.
5:18 - For assuredly, I say to you, till heaven and earth pass away, one jot or one tittle will by no means pass from the law till all is fulfilled.
5:19 - Whoever therefore breaks one of the least of these commandments, and teaches men so, shall be called least in the kingdom of heaven; but whoever does and teaches them, he shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
5:20 - For I say to you, that unless your righteousness exceeds the righteousness of the scribes and Pharisees, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven.

Therefore, according to the book of Matthew, all the Old Testament law is still valid.

Therefore, all followers of the OT have to...
- kill people who don't listen to priests (Deuteronomy 17:12), homosexuals (Leviticus 20:13), fortunetellers (Leviticus 20:27), anyone who strikes their parents (Exodus 21:15), adulterers (Leviticus 20:10), fornicators (Leviticus 21:9), worshippers of other religions (Exodus 22:19), nonbelievers (2 Chronicles 15:12-13), everyone who lives in the same city as a pagan (Deuteronomy 13:13-19).
- have a wedding between rapists and rape victims (Deuteronomy 22:28-29), then kill them (Deuteronomy 22:23-24), unless the raping is from women captives in a war (Deuteronomy 21:10-14)
- follow the rules regarding sex slaves (Exodus 21:7-11)
- sometimes get nice perks from engaging in holy wars (Zechariah 14:1-2)


Anyone care to point out any error in this?

Bible student said...

Where is this law being enforced and by what government?