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NPR Nuns


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Showing 1-25 of 153 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Jan 14, 2013 7:55:42 AM PST
John D. Brey says:
On NPR this morning there was a section about the rising number of "nuns" in the USA ("nuns' being used to speak of "none" religious types). One of these nuns they interviewed said he was a Christian early in his life but was turned off by the idea that anyone would be sent to hell if they rejected Christ as Savior.

I thought the semantics were messed up since according to Christian belief, no person is sent to hell for rejection of Jesus Christ as their Savior. They are born into sin, and thus on their way to hell such that far from rejection of Christ resulting in some sort of judgment, in truth, they are under a judgment from birth that faith in Christ remedies.

It's not correct to claim that God sends anyone to hell for rejecting Christ. The person who rejects Christ is already on his way to hell such that rejecting Christ is rejecting his need for Salvation; it's rejecting the idea that he is born on the path to hell apart from anything Jesus did or did not do.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:07:28 AM PST
The idea is that God, being omnipotent and omniscient, both created a system in which those who didn't believe and act a certain way were condemned to eternal torture, *and* knew full well that this would happen, to whom, and why, including the fact that his very existence would be a matter of uncertainty and debate.

No sane, moral, compassionate individual would create such a system.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:09:40 AM PST
goblue says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:14:15 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 14, 2013 8:15:15 AM PST
Sanity, morality and compassion have a set of norms, and we know what those norms are.

Sanity, morality and compassion can also work under different norms - God's norms - and we can *accept* those as being unique to Him.

We are to love God and see all His decisions in the light of that love. We don't have to understand the decisions.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:15:02 AM PST
"Would you have any evidence to support this claim?"

Are you claiming that a sane, moral, compassionate individual *would* create such a system? If so, then what makes you think so?

I, personally, consider it to be neither sane nor moral nor compassionate to create a system in which individuals are subjected to infinite torture for, at worst, finite immorality, and are subjected to this with only the most vague and confusing of hints that this will indeed be their fate... and, on top of all that, the criteria upon which they are judged are that of early Iron Age tribespeople.

My statement was a moral position I have taken, not an argument I am making.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:18:02 AM PST
"Sanity, morality and compassion have a set of norms, and we know what those norms are."

"We" only "know" those norms in the most generic of senses, given that they are to a very great degree subjective judgements.

"Sanity, morality and compassion can also work under different norms - God's norms - and we can *accept* those as being unique to Him."

Why should we? Why should the desires, beliefs, opinions, or commands of a particular being be considered to be binding on us? Since I utterly and vehemently reject "Might Makes Right" as a moral principle, what other justification can you offer?

"We are to love God and saw all His decisions in the light of that love. We don't have to understand the decisions."

I reject both assertions. Can you give me any good *reasons* as to why I shouldn't?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:20:18 AM PST
goblue says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:20:49 AM PST
John D. Brey -

You have set up an interesting thread, and I look forward to its development.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:26:11 AM PST
"So its was just a subjectvei opinion and you cannot evidentially or logically support that opinion?"

What evidence or logic would you accept? If the answer is "None", then there' s no point in getting into it with you.

Moral positions are rarely, if ever, the product of pure logic or a chain of evidence. That said, I consider it immoral to:
a. torture a person infinitely for finite crimes
b. torture a person while giving that person a ambiguous, vague set of criteria by which they may avoid that torture

oh, and

c. TORTURE A PERSON AT ALL

Now, you may consider torture, much less infinite torture to be moral, compassionate, or sane, but I decline to share that position. If you want to argue in favor of it, be my guest.

Finally, if you are that species of online inhabitant who delights in having protracted philosophical / logical arguments for the sake of argument, you'll have to find someone else to play with, as I am not interested.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:39:53 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 14, 2013 8:40:21 AM PST
Michael Altarriba :

You quoted my "Sanity, morality and compassion have a set of norms, and we know what those norms are."

Please read that as being generalized within western, modern-day thought.
..........

You then quoted my "Sanity, morality and compassion can also work under different norms - God's norms - and we can *accept* those as being unique to him."

With his superior Lord-of-All intelligence, you wouldn't expect God to behave and think like mortals.
We must bow the knee to Him in recognition of that. Also, we must not ask "why?" to God. As they say here in France - "il faut accepter."
..........

Afterwards, you quoted my "We are to love God and see all decisions in the light of that love. We don't have to understand the decisions."

To deal with your questions :

1. Loving God means not being alone in the wilderness.

2. Our inferior intelligence would stop us understanding any God-given explanation this side of paradise, so He doesn't give us any.
..........

To paraphrase the well-known phrase : "Ours is not to question; ours is not to wonder why."

Best wishes, Javana

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:45:32 AM PST
"Please read that as being generalized within western, modern-day thought."

My response still applies. Sanity, morality and compassion are subjectively arrived at, and subjectively evaluated.

"With his superior Lord-of-All intelligence, you wouldn't expect God to behave and think like mortals."

Since I have no good reason to believe that such a being exists, or that said being has the attributes you attribute, *and since any claims you care to make concerning this being can only be countered by more belief and opinion*, I am not required to consider this being to be superior to the point that "Might Makes Right" becomes acceptable.

"We must bow the knee to Him in recognition of that. Also, we must not ask "why?" to God. As they say here in France - "il faut accepter." "

You've given me neither rational argument nor moral argument as to why I should accept this assertion.

I take it, then, that if you became convinced that your God commanded that you drown babies, you'd do so cheerfully, secure in the knowledge that He knew best?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 8:58:34 AM PST
goblue says:
<<Michael Altarriba says: What evidence or logic would you accept>>

For evidence I would accept evidence from peer reviewed science or philosophy journals or books by scientists or philosophers. Something adheres to the Law of NonContradiciton.

>>Moral positions are rarely, if ever, the product of pure logic or a chain of evidence<<

Are yours nothing but feelings?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 9:20:33 AM PST
Please ask me non-hypothetical questions, Michael.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 9:27:56 AM PST
I take the immorality of torture as being a moral axiom.

If you don't share this axiom, and are not motivated by your empathy or a sense of compassion, then no, I have no argument from a peer reviewed journal to offer you.

So... are you, in fact, against torture, or for it?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 9:29:45 AM PST
Javana, if you become convinced that God declares something must be done, but others disagree with you, how do we go about in determining whether either of you is correct?

Is there any action that is not justified by the declaration "God commands it" ?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 9:30:12 AM PST
I really like and appreciate this response.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 9:40:46 AM PST
God's commandments are well known. I am not suddenly going to think God has given me a commandment outside of those, Michael!

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 9:48:51 AM PST
"God's commandments are well known."

There are no less than *three* different versions of the decalog given in the Bible, and considerable debate as to the interpretation of any of them. Witness the hundreds of different Christian sects which each make their own claims as to the will and nature of the divine.

Given this, I'd say your use of the phrase "well known" in this context was misleading... at best.

"I am not suddenly going to think God has given me a commandment outside of those, Michael!"

How do you know that?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 9:56:08 AM PST
Leading a Christian life doesn't have to be complicated.
..........

I am a careful Christian, Michael. I take my rules from the Bible and I don't dream up spurious ones.

Posted on Jan 14, 2013 10:00:00 AM PST
Last edited by the author on Jan 14, 2013 10:01:07 AM PST
Brian Curtis says:
Has any theist here come up with a solution to the "good without God" paradox, often called Euthyphro's Dilemma?

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

This discussion touches on the same point about morality. The theist is asked whether a given action required by "god's laws" is
1) Good simply because God commanded it, or
2) Commanded by God because it is good.

If 1), then any act could be justified as long as God gave the order--including the murder of children, for example (Old Testament examples abound). If 2), then goodness does not originate from God, and exists regardless of his endorsement or condemnation.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 10:02:43 AM PST
Gneiss Guy says:
Clarissa,
Which rules do you take from the Bible and which do you ignore? As a careful Christian I would think it would be very risky to pick and choose which of "God's" commandments to follow.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 10:06:47 AM PST
Picking and choosing is very risky, as you say. I don't do it.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 10:13:40 AM PST
Gneiss Guy says:
So then you are unclean seven days of the month?

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 10:16:56 AM PST
Facetiae.

In reply to an earlier post on Jan 14, 2013 10:20:26 AM PST
John D. Brey says:
Michael Altarriba says: >>The idea is that God, being omnipotent and omniscient, both created a system in which those who didn't believe and act a certain way were condemned to eternal torture, *and* knew full well that this would happen, to whom, and why, including the fact that his very existence would be a matter of uncertainty and debate. . . No sane, moral, compassionate individual would create such a system. <<

I fully agree with you that it makes no sense whatsoever for a fair and loving God to condemn persons to eternal punishment for finite crimes (or sins). It doesn't take a rocket scientist to figure out that living for 70 years as a "sinner" and paying for those sins with 70 trillion years of torment and torture (and that's just getting started on your eternal punishment) seems pretty satanic. . . Therefore something is not right in the simplistic understanding of these things. Which is not to doubt or reject the absolute veracity of the holy word of God.

Without getting too deep into theology, there's a few possible explanations for what seems to be the Bible's claim that because of sin, we're born into eternal condemnation. Firstly, it's possible that what is revealed in "time" (or finite existence) merely mirrors our eternal nature which God has known from the councils of his omniscient will for all time and from eternity past. Which is to say that a sinner who rejects Jesus Christ as his personal Savior is merely manifesting an eternal disposition in "time," and not actually creating an eternal disposition through actions arising in "time."

If contrary to the foregoing, eternal ramifications do in fact arise from decisions made in finite time, then it's possible that there could be an ultimate redemption for all creatures after the condemnation is made and the buggy-whip of God's justice is felt in the fires of everlasting hell? ----- In other words, if a person was born into sin, and never accepted Christ as Savior, died, and went to hell, then it seems like he might have an immediate change of heart once he felt the fires of hell, and understood that all the evangelical hullabaloo was not just hot air (so to say). . . Which is to say that if a person didn't really take the Gospel seriously during time, perhaps a taste of hell would wake them up to the enormity of the decision being rendered when someone rejects the extremely expensive gift, paid for with God's own Blood?

My personal take is that time reflects eternity; that what we do in time is a reflection of what we are in eternity. If we reject our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ in "time," then time and time again we would reject him under every possible finite scenario. Time only registers what is true in an eternal sense. Eternal senses are not bound to time, but time is bound to prove eternal realities.
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Discussion in:  Religion forum
Participants:  12
Total posts:  153
Initial post:  Jan 14, 2013
Latest post:  Jan 17, 2013

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