Boards.ie uses cookies. By continuing to browse this site you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Click here to find out more x
Post Reply  
 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
01-05-2012, 15:06   #4291
nickcave
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 297
Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
Indeed I am a Christian. Maybe you should do a bit more investigation as to what different Christians believe rather than operate on false assumptions?

After all, we're always happy to answer questions about our faith.
Very well then: what is your position on original sin, and the condition of man? Of what denomination are you or which are you closest to?
Quote:
It's not an 'avoidance' when I point out that my beliefs are different to what you assume.
Quantify this - tell me what I assumed regarding your position on the reward/gift question, where I assumed it and how it differs from your actual position.
Quote:
I do not believe that salvation is a reward for any good work or action.
Yes, again thanks for that. Now we're back to my 'irrelevant' analogy - why does your opinion on whether or not salvation is deserved affect it being or not being a reward? But to move on, is accepting God's way not a 'good action', then? What does God offer salvation in response to?

Last edited by nickcave; 01-05-2012 at 15:12.
nickcave is offline  
Advertisement
01-05-2012, 15:24   #4292
PDN
Closed Account
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 13,544
Quote:
Originally Posted by nickcave View Post
Very well then: what is your position on original sin, and the condition of man? Of what denomination are you or which are you closest to?
I believe that human beings are born with an inward bias or tendency towards sin. This is the concept of original sin as understood by most Arminian or Wesleyan Christians such as Methodists, Salvation Army, Nazarenes and many Pentecostal denominations. By this understanding, we may have an inherent attraction towards sin, but we are fully responsible for each sinful act we choose to commit. Also, by this understanding, we are not guilty of anyone else's sin - just our own.

Quote:
Quantify this - tell me what I assumed and where I assumed it. Expect difficulty.
I expect difficulty every time I explain theological concepts to those who are rather uninformed in that field. But don't worry - that's my job.

You keep referring to salvation as a reward. That is most emphatically not what I believe.

Quote:
Yes, again thanks for that. Now we're back to my 'irrelevant' analogy - why does your opinion on whether or not salvation is deserved affect it being or not being a reward?
re·ward/riˈwôrd/
Noun: A thing given in recognition of service, effort, or achievement.
Verb: Make a gift of something to (someone) in recognition of their services, efforts, or achievements.


The message of the Christian Gospel is that salvation is given on the basis of what Christ has done, not in recognition of any achievement, effort, or service we could ever do.

Quote:
But to move on, is accepting God's way not a 'good action', then?
Not at all. No more than social welfare is a reward that you earn by signing on.

If a stranger approached me and offered me a €50 note, would you say I earned a reward by not pushing the gift away?
PDN is offline  
01-05-2012, 15:27   #4293
Penn
Well-endowed
 
Penn's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
History suggests otherwise.

That isn't actually true. Fighting occurs in tribes pretty frequently. They do, of course, tend to have more inner cohesion when they are busy slaughtering outsiders.

Again, history suggests otherwise. In fact there have only been a tiny minority of times and places in history where we could have a public discussion like this without at least one of us ending up being burned at the stake or sent to a gulag.
So we can agree that religion has no effect on stopping any of that? Because these things happened in countries with religion too.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
I have repeatedly asked (in bold face and red ink, no less) for someone to demonstrate why it isn't. So far the silence is deafening.
Not in any of the posts in which you've responded to me (I tend to skim over ones I'm not involved in). But like I said, it's technically free will, but the choices are not fair. He is forcing the choice on you. Live how he wants you to live, or suffer the consequences. Speaking of questions going unanswered, Why have a punishment at all? Why have Hell? What purpose does it serve if not to give eternal souls a place to suffer eternal suffering?

You may not see Heaven as a reward and you may call it an undeserved gift, but gifts aren't usually given only when you've done something someone else wants you to do, and knowing that you'd get the gift once you've done it. That's a reward.

Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
God tells people what is right and what is wrong, and sends prophets and messengers to enncourage people to choose the right, and warns us of the consequences of our choices. Not only that, He comes to earth in the Person of Jesus and suffers horrendously to give us an opportunity to choose a better path. All of this is intervention - but it is clearly compatible with allowing free will, as evidenced by the many people who still spurn Him.
And again, why are there consequences? Why create Hell? He has the power to not send souls to Hell. Why give people free will and punish them, eternally, for not doing with it what he wants you to do with it. And there's a reason why I've pointed out several times that the first three commandments are about worshipping him, because he tells people what is right or wrong, and he chooses to tell people that worshipping him is right, and not worshipping him is wrong.
Penn is offline  
01-05-2012, 15:39   #4294
PDN
Closed Account
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 13,544
Quote:
Originally Posted by Penn View Post
So we can agree that religion has no effect on stopping any of that? Because these things happened in countries with religion too.
Religion frequently makes the problem much worse. If you're looking to argue with someone who holds the position that all and any religion is beneficial then you're likely to be disappointed.
Quote:
Not in any of the posts in which you've responded to me (I tend to skim over ones I'm not involved in). But like I said, it's technically free will, but the choices are not fair. He is forcing the choice on you. Live how he wants you to live, or suffer the consequences.
So you keep saying - but you seeing a choice as unfair or unequal does not equate to a denial of free will.

Quote:
Speaking of questions going unanswered, Why have a punishment at all? Why have Hell? What purpose does it serve if not to give eternal souls a place to suffer eternal suffering?
I think I've answered that many times by now. I see hell as the absence of God's presence. It serves the purpose of granting the wishes of those who reject the opportunity to be in His presence.

Quote:
You may not see Heaven as a reward and you may call it an undeserved gift, but gifts aren't usually given only when you've done something someone else wants you to do, and knowing that you'd get the gift once you've done it. That's a reward.
Sorry, you're wrong there. Gifts are usually given on the basis that you have to accept the gift in order to have it.

Quote:
And again, why are there consequences? Why create Hell? He has the power to not send souls to Hell. Why give people free will and punish them, eternally, for not doing with it what he wants you to do with it?
There's really not much point in asking me questions if you repeatedly ignore my answers, is there?

I've already stated several times that hell may be your creation rather than God's. He can give you a beautiful garden, but humans will manage to turn it into a Dachau. Unfettered free will is all that it would take.
PDN is offline  
01-05-2012, 15:49   #4295
Penn
Well-endowed
 
Penn's Avatar
I'm sorry, but a lot of that is based on what your interpretation or my interpretation of Hell is. And this is a point I've come back to many times throughout this thread: Religion is too ambiguous. When so many aspects of what is essentially the same religion are so open to people's interpretations, then what is the point of religion? How can anyone try to live their lives in accordance with God's wishes when so many people have different interpretations of what God's wishes are?

At this point, I'm bowing out of here (though as ever, I will return when I'm bored)
Penn is offline  
Advertisement
01-05-2012, 15:50   #4296
nickcave
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 297
Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
I believe that human beings are born with an inward bias or tendency towards sin.
A tendency towards sin, but not born in sin. Are there then people who are not born in sin, are capable of sin, but do not sin? And some of those non-sinners who do not follow God, or have never heard of Christianity? If so, what afterlife awaits them? If not, is sin then inevitable? If it is inevitable, as a result of human nature say, then how is it a choice at all? Either we can choose to not be sinners, or we cannot choose.

Quote:
You keep referring to salvation as a reward. That is most emphatically not what I believe.
I asked you to quantify your claim that I had misrepresented you. I told you you wouldn't be able to find any case of that. Let's move on.

re·ward/riˈwôrd/
Noun: A thing given in recognition of service, effort, or achievement.
Verb: Make a gift of something to (someone) in recognition of their services, efforts, or achievements.


See also 'award'

Quote:
The message of the Christian Gospel is that salvation is given on the basis of what Christ has done, not in recognition of any achievement, effort, or service we could ever do.
Why, then, are we not all saved? If there is no action that who are saved take that those who are damned do not take, I mean?
Quote:
If a stranger approached me and offered me a €50 note, would you say I earned a reward by not pushing the gift away?
No, but if you accepted an offer of €50 in exchange for following that person for some specified duration, to be paid out on completion of the contract, then yes.

Last edited by nickcave; 01-05-2012 at 15:52.
nickcave is offline  
01-05-2012, 16:15   #4297
PDN
Closed Account
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 13,544
Quote:
Originally Posted by nickcave View Post
A tendency towards sin, but not born in sin. Are there then people who are not born in sin, are capable of sin, but do not sin? And some of those non-sinners who do not follow God, or have never heard of Christianity? If so, what afterlife awaits them?
Yes, I believe there are. Many young infants would fit your description.

What afterlife awaits them? I believe that they spend eternity in God's presence.

Quote:
If not, is sin then inevitable? If it is inevitable, as a result of human nature say, then how is it a choice at all? Either we can choose to not be sinners, or we cannot choose.
Again, the Gospel does not deal with hypotheticals but with real situations. All of us, at one point or another (and usually, if we're honest, a heck of a lot of times) have chosen to sin. And we are responsible for our choices. Original sin, that bias or tendency towards sin which we inherited, sooner or later ends up leading (but not forcing) us into making wrong choices.
Quote:
I asked you to quantify your claim that I had misrepresented you. I told you you wouldn't be able to find any case of that. Let's move on.
Then I'm sorry. When you said there was a contradiction in my argument, I understood that as meaning a contradiction between two positions that I had taken. I hadn't realised that you were using 'contradiction' to mean that something I believed was contradictory to your unbeliever's misunderstanding of Christianity. But fair enough, we'll move along.

Quote:
Why, then, are we not all saved? If there is no action that who are saved take that those who are damned do not take, I mean?
Some are not saved because they reject the gift.

Quote:
No, but if you accepted an offer of €50 in exchange for following that person for some specified duration, to be paid out on completion of the contract, then yes.
And that does not apply to the Gospel. Your misunderstandings are showing again.

To be saved is to accept the free gift of salvation in Jesus Christ. There is no contract to be completed before you receive the gift. The New Testament states very clearly that when you accept this salvation then you have already passed from death to life.

The Gospel also declares that, once you have accepted this gift, then God gives you His Holy Spirit - an experience that theologians call regeneration (and the apostle Peter called being born again). A natural result of this regeneration is that your lifestyle will change, producing good works, and you will follow Jesus. But the New Testament is very clear on this point, such a change of heart follows salvation, not vice versa.
PDN is offline  
01-05-2012, 16:18   #4298
PDN
Closed Account
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 13,544
Quote:
Originally Posted by Penn View Post
I'm sorry, but a lot of that is based on what your interpretation or my interpretation of Hell is. And this is a point I've come back to many times throughout this thread: Religion is too ambiguous. When so many aspects of what is essentially the same religion are so open to people's interpretations, then what is the point of religion? How can anyone try to live their lives in accordance with God's wishes when so many people have different interpretations of what God's wishes are?

At this point, I'm bowing out of here (though as ever, I will return when I'm bored)
That's the way it is, Christians have different opinions on different things and we think things through for ourselves rather than all subscribing to a monolithic North-Korean style groupthink. I do appreciate, however, that such intellectual freedom and variety of opinions is frustrating for anyone wanting to set up a lazy strawman with stereotypes drawn from the drivel written by Dawkins, Hitchens et al.
PDN is offline  
01-05-2012, 16:30   #4299
marienbad
Registered User
 
marienbad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 4,247
Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
Ah, you're back.

So, once again, how exactly is an interventionist God contradictory to the notion of free will? (Please note, saying "God is different" is not actually an answer to the question).
''

You just explained it perfectly yourself, so there is no need for me to reapeat yours words again .
marienbad is offline  
Advertisement
01-05-2012, 16:33   #4300
PDN
Closed Account
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 13,544
Quote:
Originally Posted by marienbad View Post
''

You just explained it perfectly yourself, so there is no need for me to reapeat yours words again .
So you aren't going to answer the question then?

So, once again, how exactly is an interventionist God contradictory to the notion of free will? (Please note, saying "God is different" is not actually an answer to the question).

I'm getting that sense of Déjà vu.
PDN is offline  
Thanks from:
01-05-2012, 16:36   #4301
Penn
Well-endowed
 
Penn's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
That's the way it is, Christians have different opinions on different things and we think things through for ourselves rather than all subscribing to a monolithic North-Korean style groupthink. I do appreciate, however, that such intellectual freedom and variety of opinions is frustrating for anyone wanting to set up a lazy strawman with stereotypes drawn from the drivel written by Dawkins, Hitchens et al.
Want to know a secret? I've never read any Dawkins or Hitchens book. At all. Not even a chapter. Sshhh... Don't tell anyone.

Perhaps it's why you countered my points with some good arguments. You see, I'm pretty much just thinking out loud as I go along. Someone makes a point, I give my own response to it. What I think.

Unlike some, I don't need a book to tell me what I should think

Last edited by Penn; 01-05-2012 at 16:42.
Penn is offline  
(2) thanks from:
01-05-2012, 16:50   #4302
nickcave
Registered User
 
Join Date: Nov 2003
Posts: 297
Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
Yes, I believe there are. Many young infants would fit your description.
The very young do not fit my description - 'Capable of sin, but does not sin'. They cannot make rational choices.

Any adults/people who are capable of choice?

Quote:
What afterlife awaits them? I believe that they spend eternity in God's presence.
Which would be in itself a path determined for them - one which they did not and could not choose.

Quote:
When you said there was a contradiction in my argument
I did not.

Quote:
Some are not saved because they reject the gift.
rather than accepting it? You're not convincing me here.

Quote:
To be saved is to accept the free gift of salvation in Jesus Christ. There is no contract to be completed before you receive the gift. The New Testament states very clearly that when you accept this salvation then you have already passed from death to life.

The Gospel also declares that, once you have accepted this gift, then God gives you His Holy Spirit - an experience that theologians call regeneration (and the apostle Peter called being born again). A natural result of this regeneration is that your lifestyle will change, producing good works, and you will follow Jesus. But the New Testament is very clear on this point, such a change of heart follows salvation, not vice versa.
We're talking about after-life, not salvation in the 'born-again' sense. And in that sense you have to live your life in God's way in order to receive the reward of everlasting life in Heaven. That is a contract. You mentioned Hitler etc. How do you know that Hitler is not in heaven? Had it something to do with the way he lived his life?
nickcave is offline  
01-05-2012, 17:17   #4303
marienbad
Registered User
 
marienbad's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2010
Posts: 4,247
Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
So you aren't going to answer the question then?

So, once again, how exactly is an interventionist God contradictory to the notion of free will? (Please note, saying "God is different" is not actually an answer to the question).

I'm getting that sense of Déjà vu.
Here is the perfect explanation -

So now you're complaining because your free will has consequences? If it was devoid of consequences then it wouldn't really be free will at all, would it?
marienbad is offline  
01-05-2012, 17:24   #4304
Zombrex
Closed Account
 
Join Date: Mar 2001
Posts: 25,716
Quote:
Originally Posted by PDN View Post
Ah, you're back.

So, once again, how exactly is an interventionist God contradictory to the notion of free will? (Please note, saying "God is different" is not actually an answer to the question).
If God intervened any time I was about to sin, and thus made it so that I could never sin, do you believe this would be contrary to the notion of free will, since it is removes the option to choose to sin (or more specifically takes away the need to choose not to)?
Zombrex is offline  
01-05-2012, 17:28   #4305
PDN
Closed Account
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 13,544
Quote:
Originally Posted by marienbad View Post
Here is the perfect explanation -

So now you're complaining because your free will has consequences? If it was devoid of consequences then it wouldn't really be free will at all, would it?
Ok, Marien, you're going to have to explain what the connection is here. Because that is like saying that 4+6=Blue.

Free will has consequences. An interventionist God is perfectly compatible with free will. The fact that free will has consequences doesn't change that fact one iota.
PDN is offline  
Thanks from:
Post Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Remove Text Formatting
Bold
Italic
Underline

Insert Image
Wrap [QUOTE] tags around selected text
 
Decrease Size
Increase Size
Please sign up or log in to join the discussion

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search



Share Tweet