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A religious discussion

By jardinier ·
As I browse through other discussions, I note that there is a strong tendency to branch off into some religious side thread.

This would suggest to me that some people are hanging out for a really hot religious debate and I believe I have the topic to suit.

?Either Christianity is true, or it is the greatest fraud ever perpetrated upon human kind.?

I don?t think I have ever thought of myself as a Christian, but mainly for social reasons I have attended a variety of churches on and off throughout my life. Thus I am moderately familiar with Scripture, very familiar with essential doctrines, and very, very familiar with which aspects of this religion are accentuated by different groups or denominations.

So for most of my life I just thought of Christianity as one of the several major religions in the world ? just one of several ways to reach God, The Truth, Enlightenment, Heaven, Nirvana or whatever.

HOWEVER on my recent foray into discussions at two American Christian websites ? which like TR have members from other countries besides the USA ? I encountered an overwhelming emphasis on certain aspects of this religion which had not been stressed ? nay even had been bypassed ? in mainstream churches.

Well here it is in a nutshell. According to the predominant views expressed at these websites, the quintessential doctrine of Christianity is all about who will be saved and spend eternity with God (in all three persons ? Father, Son and Holy Spirit) and who will spend eternity in hellfire. The requirements for salvation are (1) by the grace of God (quite arbitrary according to which school you follow) and (2) accepting that Jesus died on the cross to pay for your sins.

Leading an ethical life is fine too, but it is the BIG either/or that overrides all other considerations.

These hard-core ?Bible Based? Christians for the most part believe that people belonging to established Christian denominations are as surely **** bound as Hindus, Buddhists, Muslims, atheists, agnostics and so forth.

Personally I think this is garbage, but it does highlight the way in which Christianity is unique among religions. It is the ONLY major religion which offers this black-and-white ultimatum ? eternal heaven or eternal ****.

Of course all religions conveniently teach that reward or punishment will be dealt out AFTER death ?- whether it be heaven and **** or reincarnation -- so that you have to take it on faith anyhow.

Because of its evangelical nature, coupled with colonisation of large parts of the world by Europeans, Christianity is the most widely practised religion in the world with 33 per cent of the world?s population as nominal followers.

In an event known as the ?Rapture? ? in the end times, when Jesus returns, all the ?good? Christians (those who follow the correct doctrine) will be lifted up to heaven, and the rest of the unfortunate human race will be dispelled to **** to suffer very hot conditions for all eternity.

Now if Christ DOESN?T return, then all the bloodshed, guilt and other negative by products of this religion will have been in vain.

As you all know, I have my own interpretation of Christianity which includes some mystical aspects, but I DO NOT, never have and hopefully never will believe in an ETERNAL state of anything.

Eastern religions ? especially Hinduism and its offspring Buddhism -- teach that enlightenment or whatever can be achieved by various clearly set out paths. It is only Christianity ? and perhaps Islam (of which I know very little) ? which place salvation in the hands of a God who chooses by a whim who will be saved.

I have not set out this preamble as well as I would have liked, but no doubt other thoughts will occur to me if people respond to this discussion.

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

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Actually I've always thought ****

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Indeed it is not slavish ...

would be a more palatable fate, listening to billions of people like you sitting on clouds and flapping would be a fate worse than death.

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It is not slavish obedience

by fermihost In reply to Indeed it is not slavish ...

Just because you don't like the fact that God will judge all humans doesn't mean that it is slavish. Slavish would leave you with no choices or free will. In Christianity you have two choices and the free will in order to make that choice.

Do you expect God to just let you go with whatever religion you find or come up with and just wink at it. God said that he would not share his glory with another so that deffenatly kicks out all other religions as false, and the idea of the universe being a simulation is just another idea to escape the question of who is the creator and move the answer further and further out of reach. It also requires massive dosses of faith.

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By your own words, it is indeed slavish.

by deepsand In reply to Indeed it is not slavish ...

You stated "Slavish would leave you with no choices or free will.

Also, per you, it was God who both created us and decided the choices available to us.

Therefore, since we neither created ourselves nor chose our possible destinies, any covenant with God is a contract of adhesion, not a negotiated one.

It therefore follows that we do not have free will, which meets your above referenced definition of slavish.

Next time try using a bit more logic before you put your foot into it.

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Excuse me

by Tony Hopkinson In reply to Neil, Christians don't ha ...

Remember Goliath, big chap rather dead, killed by a cowardly honourless dog from a distance ?

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What are you talking about

by fermihost In reply to Excuse me

David was not cowardly or honourless or a canine. I don't understand what you are getting at.

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Pretty damn simple point by Tony, I thought

by neilb@uk In reply to Excuse me

The culture at the time called for a fight between champions of the opposing armies. The Philistine's champion was Goliath and, as was honourable, he stepped forward to engage in single combat with the opposing champion.

That "champion" - David - picked Goliath off from a distance with the sling. I believe that the American word to describe it would be "bushwhacked". The modern equivalent would be "shot in the back".

Still, it's in the bible and so it must have been an honourable action and Tony and I just badly miss the point.

Which is?

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He may have missed that chapter.

by deepsand In reply to Excuse me

Or, it may simply be that it was excised from his bible for being "non-Christian."

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The difference is that a boy, stood up to one of the Elohim...

by X-MarCap In reply to Excuse me

The Elohim may be the ultimate enemy of mankind...

The long distance weapon caused Goliath to laugh.. A kid in a loincloth, with a slingshot... Ha!!! Ha!!!

Goliath didn't even bother to carry his shield. He had a shield bearer... Stupidity killed Goliath, his own.

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Nope, Not in any version that I've seen

by neilb@uk In reply to Excuse me

was Goliath aware that David was going equipped to kill him from a distance. Goliath laughed at David for coming against him with a stick. Had he known about the sling you can bet that he'd have had an archer level the playing field. he might have been big but he couldn't have been that dumb.

Anyway, most biblical scholars reckon that the whole story is just "spin" to make David look good.

I'm puzzled about your reference to "Elohim" though. We met that word a few times in the EL thread and it's actually the Hebrew word used in the early OT for "God", according to resident Bible Scholar Gret - third word in Genesis.

Neil :)

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Well if you don't accept the Roman Catholic Church

by HAL 9000 Moderator In reply to Catholisim and nazism are ...

How can you accept any form of Christianity? After all it was and still is the Roman Catholic Church that held all the original writings that go into make up the bible and all the so called Religious Artifacts that date from the time of Christ and all of his followers at least on the Pauline side of things.


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