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Oh Lord, Where Do We Go From Here? Current and former members (and anyone in between!)... tell us what is on your mind and in your heart.

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Old 08-23-2011, 07:46 AM   #1
aron
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Default Elvis has left the building

I know that I am in a minority on this, even among ex-LCers, but it seems to me that the "New Testament basis" for our collective assembling and testimony might have included practices which are not really helpful.

I remember how Ezekiel chapter 10 describes God's glory departing from the temple. They still had the building and the practices, but God was no longer interested in participating.

Likewise, to me, the epistles to the messengers of the seven asian assemblies in Revelation chapters 2 and 3 indicate to me that the "NT basis" for our collective testimony isn't mayhaps what we think it was. You know, remember those books like "how to meet" and "the practice of the elders and co-workers", etc.

Maybe they were building with a failed model. Maybe Nee's "Normal christian church life" wasn't really what God wanted.

Maybe those seven asian assemblies were kind of like a representative sample for the whole body to consider. Certainly there is a universal character to the writing.

1:1The revelation of Jesus Christ, which God gave him to show his servants what must soon take place. He made it known by sending his angel to his servant John, 2who testifies to everything he saw—that is, the word of God and the testimony of Jesus Christ. 3Blessed is the one who reads the words of this prophecy, and blessed are those who hear it and take to heart what is written in it, because the time is near.

So here is John, who as a young man had seen John the Baptist contend in the desert with the "brood of vipers" coming out of Jerusalem, then Jesus likewise struggling with the religious ones, then at the end of his life, from Patmos, John sees the same pattern repeating itself. Form without substance. The Glory of God is leaving.

So if we obsess over the form (the ground of the church, how many elders, who (if anyone) is the apostle, etc etc), without realizing we are building with a failed model.

On a positive note, we have Dorcas making shirts for the elderly sisters, we have John and James and Peter reminding Paul to "remember the poor", which Paul says he is eager to do, we have Philip going down the south road out of Jerusalem and finding an Ethiopian reading Isaiah, etc.

There are indeed a lot of good examples. But just because something happened in the NT doesn't mean we need to try to slavishly imitate it. The only things I can see to slavishly imitate is to love God, love our neighbor, try to follow the Spirit. Forgive one another as God has forgiven us.

The organizational stuff is a waste of time. It is no wonder to me that the "NT template" which Nee and Lee tried to build with has been accompanied by unrelieved turmoil.
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Old 08-23-2011, 08:19 AM   #2
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There are indeed a lot of good examples. But just because something happened in the NT doesn't mean we need to try to slavishly imitate it. The only things I can see to slavishly imitate is to love God, love our neighbor, try to follow the Spirit. Forgive one another as God has forgiven us.

The organizational stuff is a waste of time. It is no wonder to me that the "NT template" which Nee and Lee tried to build with has been accompanied by unrelieved turmoil.
I tend to agree with you personally. I haven't met regularly with a church of any kind for years. However, if Christianity disappears as an institution, the Christian values which you have enununciated above might eventually disappear with it.
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Old 08-23-2011, 09:06 AM   #3
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I tend to agree with you personally. I haven't met regularly with a church of any kind for years. However, if Christianity disappears as an institution, the Christian values which you have enununciated above might eventually disappear with it.
The golden rule was not invented by Jesus. It has been around since pre-history, and is a rule in all religions, before and after Jesus. So I doubt that it will disappear should Christianity eventually be counted as the Greek mythologies are today.
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Old 08-23-2011, 11:30 AM   #4
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The golden rule was not invented by Jesus. It has been around since pre-history, and is a rule in all religions, before and after Jesus. So I doubt that it will disappear should Christianity eventually be counted as the Greek mythologies are today.
Jesus didn't invent compassion either. However, Jesus is a symbol of compassion for millions of people. The world needs more sources of compassion not less.
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Old 08-23-2011, 12:21 PM   #5
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Jesus didn't invent compassion either. However, Jesus is a symbol of compassion for millions of people. The world needs more sources of compassion not less.
I have witnessed believers that are less compassionate then non-believers....No one has a corner on compassion...
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Old 08-23-2011, 12:55 PM   #6
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I have witnessed believers that are less compassionate then non-believers....No one has a corner on compassion...
Brother awareness, I just find it so tragic that you have nearly nothing positive to ever say about the Bible, Christians, church history, etc. :verysad:
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Old 08-23-2011, 01:07 PM   #7
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I have witnessed believers that are less compassionate then non-believers....No one has a corner on compassion...
I was once hitch hiking in Wales, England during a hurricane. I was picked up by a man and his wife that lived about 2 or 3 hours away. He drove me to his house, let me take a warm shower, when I got out I learned they had put most of my clothes in the dryer. They gave me a nice hot meal and a bag lunch and then drove me to a good spot to hitch hike from. I asked him why he was being so nice, he said that when he was in the US people treated him very well and he was merely repaying the favor.

That was probably the single most important event in my life that led to my coming to Houston and meeting the LC there but that is a longer story.

I consider myself less compassionate than he was, and I have no idea if he was a Christian or not.

The point I am getting at is that according to the parable of the Good Samaritan the church is like a hospital where we are able to recover from being beaten up by the Law, and by the Crooks, etc. You do not go to a hospital expecting to find people who are healthy, you expect to find people who are trying to get healthy. Therefore the mark of a genuine Christian is not how compassionate they are, but are they aware that they are sick? As the Lord said "I have not come for the healthy but for the sick"
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Old 08-23-2011, 01:08 PM   #8
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Brother awareness, I just find it so tragic that you have nearly nothing positive to ever say about the Bible, Christians, church history, etc. :verysad:
Sorry. I know non-believers that are more compassionate than believers I have known thru out the years. Sorry. If the shoe fits wear it, I say.
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Old 08-23-2011, 01:45 PM   #9
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aron,

I also agree with you.

Whats important to me is that it is the same God we are worshipping.

After that its all secondary. I think as Christians we need to find a church that fits us. And when I say that, I believe that each church is an expression of God. There is no perfect church but there are churches that will fit you and some that dont. We are all created uniquely and experiance God differently, that being so its impossible to say that Evangelicals, Anglicans, Lutherans, are THE church and The expression of God.

Just find a church where you can connect with believers, is doctrinally sound and a place where you can grow as a believer.

All that other stuff is secondary.

Awareness. I agree that there are christians who are less compassionate than non-christians. Christians more judgmental or complacent that non-christians.

However the actions of a few should not effect your view on Christianity.
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Old 08-23-2011, 01:57 PM   #10
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The golden rule was not invented by Jesus. It has been around since pre-history, and is a rule in all religions, before and after Jesus. So I doubt that it will disappear should Christianity eventually be counted as the Greek mythologies are today.
Awareness,

Compassion may not enter society only through Christianity. I agree with that. The question is where did compassion come from. If you believe in a God who created human beings, God also created beings who had freedom of choice who are moral agents and exercisers of morality.

I don't doubt that their are some if not many non-Christians who have shown more compassion and done more good deeds than other Christians.

My question is the consistency dilemma. If you do no believe in a God than why seek moral justice, freedom and relief from suffering? Because you or they matter? Hardly, humans are just a bunch of carbon, oxygen and water with some chemical reactions. The universe doesnt care so why sacrifice yourself to do good? In fact their is no definition of Good and Evil as it is entirely subjective. What is the reason.. I dont question that their nice people if not more, but my question would be why, whats the point or motivation?

I say the Golden Rule was invented by God and passed through our generations regardless of religion or not. Its the only way to live sanely. Otherwise everything would be one chaotic chemical reaction. Religion paved the way for human beings to be a means to an end rather than just a means. We have intrinsic moral value due to the fact that we were created by God who loves us.

Sorry for my rambling
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:04 PM   #11
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I have witnessed believers that are less compassionate then non-believers....No one has a corner on compassion...
I agree no one has a corner on compassion. Most humans have some capacity for it. But the human capacity for compassion can be cultivated or quenched. Christian teachings and the example of Jesus are significant sources for cultivating a compassionate way of life. The world would be worse without them.
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:06 PM   #12
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Awareness,

Compassion may not enter society only through Christianity. I agree with that. The question is where did compassion come from. If you believe in a God who created human beings, God also created beings who had freedom of choice who are moral agents and exercisers of morality.

I don't doubt that their are some if not many non-Christians who have shown more compassion and done more good deeds than other Christians.

My question is the consistency dilemma. If you do no believe in a God than why seek moral justice, freedom and relief from suffering? Because you or they matter? Hardly, humans are just a bunch of carbon, oxygen and water with some chemical reactions. The universe doesnt care so why sacrifice yourself to do good? In fact their is no definition of Good and Evil as it is entirely subjective. What is the reason.. I dont question that their nice people if not more, but my question would be why, whats the point or motivation?

I say the Golden Rule was invented by God and passed through our generations regardless of religion or not. Its the only way to live sanely. Otherwise everything would be one chaotic chemical reaction. Religion paved the way for human beings to be a means to an end rather than just a means. We have intrinsic moral value due to the fact that we were created by God who loves us.

Sorry for my rambling
No need for apology, your rambling posits some good points.

I might point out, however, that the Golden Rule needs no god. It makes since if I'm honest with myself. That which I don't like done to me, I shouldn't do to others. That which I like done to me, I should do to others. It operates out of honesty with myself. No god needed.
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:53 PM   #13
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No need for apology, your rambling posits some good points.

I might point out, however, that the Golden Rule needs no god. It makes since if I'm honest with myself. That which I don't like done to me, I shouldn't do to others. That which I like done to me, I should do to others. It operates out of honesty with myself. No god needed.
Do you mind if I disagree with you and explain why and/or ask some questions?
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Old 08-23-2011, 02:59 PM   #14
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I might point out, however, that the Golden Rule needs no god. It makes since if I'm honest with myself. That which I don't like done to me, I shouldn't do to others. That which I like done to me, I should do to others. It operates out of honesty with myself. No god needed.
Reading your many posts, similar to this one, one would think that you see no real need for God at all.
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Old 08-23-2011, 04:09 PM   #15
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Religion paved the way for human beings to be a means to an end rather than just a means. We have intrinsic moral value due to the fact that we were created by God who loves us.
And the sacrifice of the Righteous One means that we no longer have to sacrifice, scandalize, and scapegoat each other to appease an angry or capricious God(s).

"Love to the loveless shown, that they might lovely be"... that was a line in a hymn that I remember. It's true: God loved us while we were yet sinners... "Here is love: not that we loved God but that He loved us..."

I can ramble too... but I think my point remains valid. No organizational structure, New Testament-based or otherwise, is needed for us to love one another. And to the extent we fixate on organizing ourselves, whether according to a first-century model or another, we risk losing our first love.

It seems to me, if the 7 asian assemblies in Rev 2 and 3 are in any way a representative sample (6 of the 7 are told to repent), that Elvis had in fact left the building. This is what the aged disciple John saw, from Patmos. So why try to recover an abandoned structure?

"We want Elvis!! We want Elvis!!"

"Sorry folks... can you hear that airplane in the distance? Elvis has left; please exit the building in an orderly fashion..."
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Old 08-23-2011, 04:57 PM   #16
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Reading your many posts, similar to this one, one would think that you see no real need for God at all.
Some times you can be so heavenly minded that you're no earthly good.
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Old 08-23-2011, 04:58 PM   #17
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Do you mind if I disagree with you and explain why and/or ask some questions?
Not at all....go fer it...
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Old 08-23-2011, 05:55 PM   #18
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I fear that Ezekiel 10 is not a good reference. This was the removal of God from the Temple because the people were not there. Or weren't supposed to be there. They were in exile. God dwelt among the people. They weren't there. The only ones remaining were actually disobedient.

If we are going to use this as a statement about Christianity, then it must be that the Christians have left the churches and so the glory of God would be removed.

But God already dwells among his people. Two or three gathered and He is there. Doesn't say, "two or three that are overcomers" or some other qualifier.

So Ezekiel 10 is not really relevant. I fear that this is just a new reason to run from other Christians and despise them because they are not up to some standard. No one died and left us in charge. Actually, someone died, but he also rose and is still present and in charge.
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Old 08-23-2011, 05:58 PM   #19
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I have witnessed believers that are less compassionate then non-believers....No one has a corner on compassion...
Ohio is right.

Of course, your statement is also right. But the reason you make it is the problem.

Actually, compassion is not exclusively Christian. But the Christian should be compassionate while there is no such requirement on others. The fact that even Christians fail at it is proof that we are not fully sanctified. We are on the path — not yet in the New J.
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Old 08-24-2011, 06:03 AM   #20
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I fear that Ezekiel 10 is not a good reference. This was the removal of God from the Temple because the people were not there. Or weren't supposed to be there. They were in exile. God dwelt among the people. They weren't there. The only ones remaining were actually disobedient...
Well I certainly need to re-read Ezekiel 10, and associated commentary, more closely. I admit to a superficial understanding. The imagery was so evocative in my mind I used it.

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If we are going to use this as a statement about Christianity, then it must be that the Christians have left the churches and so the glory of God would be removed.

So Ezekiel 10 is not really relevant.
Point received, at least for now. Hopefully I can learn something of substance from that portion and either correct or strengthen my story.

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I fear that this is just a new reason to run from other Christians and despise them because they are not up to some standard.
Yes; my point was not well made. Actually, my point at least aimed at the opposite. When I was fully under the sway of the "New Testament model" of the local christian church promulgated by Nee and his "deputy authority" Lee, I did run from other christians and despise them, because they were not "on the proper ground".

Today, I can and do meet with christians of every stripe (and many have no stripe) on whatever ground they are. I don't look past them to "the church". To me, today, my christian neighbor is the church. We gather in the Name, and the Presence (Gk parousiea) accompanies our mutual exposition/exploration/discussion of the word, and our hearts burn as the scriptures are opened. I joke not -- it is a wonderful experience.

So strike Ezekiel 10 from my initial post; Revelations 2 and 3 reveals (to me) that the bally-hooed New Testament model did not pan out.

I don't know how many times I saw and heard yucky stuff and said, "Well, it's the church". I heard others in the Recovery Churches say the same thing. They put up with "Lording over the sheep", expressly contrary to Peter's admonition, because, well, "it's the church"; it has an organizational structure closely allied with "the New Testament model" explicated by Nee. And thus its authority in our minds and over our bodies.

I/we put up with the whims of leadership being equated with "the Lord's new move"; we had this sinking feeling in our gut but we soldiered on, or tried to, because, "it's the church". We ignored our conciences because "it's the church".

So I/we were hostage because we thought our situation was biblically-derived. But biblical record itself (Rev. 2 & 3) shows 6 of the last 7 churches being told to repent; they were strongly admonished. If this are taken to be as a bellwether for the assemblies inclusive (and this was a prophetic writing which was universal in scope and aim) then our current fixation with replicating the 1st century christian church can be let go.

So just love your christian neighbor (and all your neighbors, of course; but I am focused here on the christian polity) wherever they may be found. Many of them, of course, are active in christian organizations.

A small testimony: I am active in my town, and visit the various assemblies. The pastors receive me because I minister (or try to anyway) to the flock. One of them calls me to the front and asks me to pray. He thinks I have a portion and I am grateful to share. I don't tell anyone to leave anything. I am simply trying to make the point here that this mental model which we build based on the New Testament record, of the "ideal assembly" may actually be a chimera, a stronghold in our mind.

Maybe the "ideal assembly" is where your neighbor loves the Lord and you receive him/her as such, and it is reciprocated. Looking beyond that, as Jesus said, "is of the evil one". Cf Matt 5:37

I like Nee & Lee, and am grateful for many things. It was part of my christian journey. But they and their followers posess no more authority than any other christians. Today I know of LRC christians who don't fellowship with each other because one follows LRC Brother A and the other follows LRC Brother B and Brothers A and B can't agree who has authority. So the "small potato" brother and sisters' fellowship is ruined and their sprititual walk damaged, due to this biblically-based, New Testament-derived stronghold in their minds.

The truth is what sets us free. If we accept an illusion as truth, then it can trample our lives. It is very hard to break mental models. They are indeed strongholds.
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Old 08-24-2011, 06:23 AM   #21
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Whats important to me is that it is the same God we are worshipping.

After that its all secondary.

Just find a church where you can connect with believers, is doctrinally sound and a place where you can grow as a believer.

All that other stuff is secondary.
yes; our first love is the Lord, and our neighbor. All that other stuff is secondary.

Some will find biblically-based ideals, carefully crafted, which they deem essential to the christian walk, and they will try to take you hostage. Don't do it.

Love God, love your neighbor, forgive one another as you've been forgiven, try not to sin, and don't fall prey to the schemes of the subtle one. He is much more intelligent than we are.

So be simple. Like Caleb and Joshua. "God said go into the good land, so we will go." Don't get distracted by carefully argued, scripturally based models which draw your heart from your first love.

In the LRCs they do profess to love the Lord. And they at least pay some lip service to their neighbor. But their focus is on "the church", and "the ministry", and "the move of the Lord", and "the up-to-date speaking", and "the campus work", and on and on and on. It is like a pantheon of Gods.
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Old 08-24-2011, 08:39 AM   #22
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Ohio is right.

Of course, your statement is also right. But the reason you make it is the problem.

Actually, compassion is not exclusively Christian. But the Christian should be compassionate while there is no such requirement on others. The fact that even Christians fail at it is proof that we are not fully sanctified. We are on the path — not yet in the New J.
I think Harold's argument about the golden rule implies that it is a cross cultural standard. As such it points to the possibility of compassion as a universal ethic. That would mean that it is a requirement on others as well as Christians.
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Old 08-24-2011, 08:50 AM   #23
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No need for apology, your rambling posits some good points.

I might point out, however, that the Golden Rule needs no god. It makes since if I'm honest with myself. That which I don't like done to me, I shouldn't do to others. That which I like done to me, I should do to others. It operates out of honesty with myself. No god needed.
The societies from which the golden rule comes in it's various iterations also have conceptions of the ultimate or the transcendent including gods. So not only the golden rule is cross cultural and so arguably universal, but so is the idea of transcendent or ultimate reality with which God is identified.

The golden rule as an ethical standard is insufficient for producing compassion. What if the "others" do not want done onto them what I would have them do onto me? I think the formula "Love thy neighbor as thyself" goes beyond the golden rule as typically formulated. In any case, compassion requires empathy with the feeling of the person. It has as a basis for action the inability to bear the suffering of other person.
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Old 08-24-2011, 08:51 AM   #24
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But biblical record itself (Rev. 2 & 3) shows 6 of the last 7 churches being told to repent; they were strongly admonished.
And for good reason! My experience which is also biblical is Blessings come from genuine Repentence.
I found myself reading passages in the last few weeks that led me to do a study on Repentence because I began to see how God always blesses people when they repent! I noticed when people would say to the Lord "me and my father's house have sinned against Thee" or 'I have sinned against Heaven & You and am not worthy to be considered Your son', God always Rejoiced and blessed them! That has been my story too! I know The Spirit convicts us (not to be confused w/condemnation) leading us to repent because that has been my experience. Peace & blessings always follow and I again, I know this is True because this is what always happens to me: Conviction-Repentence-Peace-Thanksgiving-Praise, Blessings. In that order.

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A small testimony: I am active in my town, and visit the various assemblies. The pastors receive me because I minister (or try to anyway) to the flock. One of them calls me to the front and asks me to pray. He thinks I have a portion and I am grateful to share.
For all the horrible experiences so many people went through while in the LC, those of us who had positive experiences, took what we learned from there and followed the instructions of God's Word to minister and build up the saints (all believers) encouraging them, that they too would grow strong in the Word and the Power of His Might so that they can do the same towards others and thus continue sharing the Good News of Jesus' Love, giving Hope to the lost !

I don't tell anyone to leave anything. I am simply trying to make the point here that this mental model which we build based on the New Testament record, of the "ideal assembly" may actually be a chimera, a stronghold in our mind.

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I like Nee & Lee, and am grateful for many things. It was part of my christian journey.
I never hung on to the words of Nee or Lee like many LCrs did but indirectly I must have as I was a part of the LC ! Nevertheless, like you, I too am grateful for my time there as it has been part of my Christian journey.

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But they and their followers posess no more authority than any other christians. Today I know of LRC christians who don't fellowship with each other because one follows LRC Brother A and the other follows LRC Brother B and Brothers A and B can't agree who has authority.
Yep. And this is no different than the denominations or "non-denomination" groups out in Christianland.

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Amen & Amen brother Aron. And the Truth has a Name above every name. Jesus is His Name.

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If we accept an illusion as truth, then it can trample our lives. It is very hard to break mental models. They are indeed strongholds.
Absolutely Right On !! You've been hitting some home runs today /yesterday Aron ! Are you under some kind of ANOINTING maybe?
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:43 AM   #25
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Ohio is right.

Of course, your statement is also right. But the reason you make it is the problem.
Why is the reason I make it a problem, cuz it calls into question yer favorite peoples, namely Christians?

Maybe you and bro Ohio haven't seen what I've seen. I've seen a self professed pagan act way more Christian than a outspoken Calvary Chapel Christian in their dealings.

And I personally have been treated more Christian by non-believers than I was by those in the local church. I'll spare you the details which is involved.

Why flinch from reality. Truth is, I've been involved with Christians all my life, and honestly, I don't see any sign that they are any more moral or ethical than non-believers. In fact, when I encounter an outspoken Christian, I've been tricked so many times that, I immediately put up a wall of distrust. So shoot me for learning this kind of lesson in life.

One of my first lessons was being ripped off by an elder in Ft. Lauderdale, not Mel Porter this time, on a roof deal, and then found out he lived a compartmental life, when he stated, "business is business and church is church."

Watchman Nee was surprised to find that Christians lie. Me too.
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Old 08-24-2011, 11:17 AM   #26
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My experience which is also biblical is Blessings come from genuine Repentence.

I found myself reading passages in the last few weeks that led me to do a study on Repentence because I began to see how God always blesses people when they repent! .....

Peace & blessings always follow and I again, I know this is True because this is what always happens to me: Conviction-Repentence-Peace-Thanksgiving-Praise, Blessings. In that order.
Isaiah ch. 53 said, "We all like sheep have gone astray." Isaiah wasn't talking about goats, or wolves, or pigs. No, even the sheep go astray. Those who think they are beyond error, and are swimming in the sea of pure truth, are in the most trouble.

I am sure many of my mental models of "how things are" and "how things ought to be" are riddled with error, or are at least woefully incomplete. I have to be willing to let go.

Nee had some good things to say. But it is critical to be willing to let go of Nee's ideas. Anything beyond Jesus is a dangerous snare. "I was determined to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ, and him crucified." (1 Cor. ch. 2)

One thing I learned while in the Recovery Churches was that "repentance" doesn't mean to feel bad, or to regret. It means to change, to have a change in thought, a change in behavior, and a change in direction. I wonder how many of us are willing to change?
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Old 08-24-2011, 11:43 AM   #27
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Reading your many posts, similar to this one, one would think that you see no real need for God at all.
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Why is the reason I make it a problem, cuz it calls into question yer favorite peoples, namely Christians?

Maybe you and bro Ohio haven't seen what I've seen. I've seen a self professed pagan act way more Christian than a outspoken Calvary Chapel Christian in their dealings.

And I personally have been treated more Christian by non-believers than I was by those in the local church. I'll spare you the details which is involved.

Why flinch from reality. Truth is, I've been involved with Christians all my life, and honestly, I don't see any sign that they are any more moral or ethical than non-believers. In fact, when I encounter an outspoken Christian, I've been tricked so many times that, I immediately put up a wall of distrust. So shoot me for learning this kind of lesson in life.

One of my first lessons was being ripped off by an elder in Ft. Lauderdale, not Mel Porter this time, on a roof deal, and then found out he lived a compartmental life, when he stated, "business is business and church is church."

Watchman Nee was surprised to find that Christians lie. Me too.
I saw a bumper sticker one time, "Christians aren't perfect, just forgiven."
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Old 08-24-2011, 01:02 PM   #28
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I saw a bumper sticker one time, "Christians aren't perfect, just forgiven."
I've seen that many times. I like it. It brings a smile to my face. It's true.

But it should be re-worded. "Christians aren't perfect, just forgiven, so don't expect them to be anything special, or more trustworthy."

So we should always factor that Christians lie into our relations. Often, if you care and pay attention, they lie to support their belief system. That has to be factored into their belief system too, as to entire validity.

That's the way it is. Be wise as serpents, and harmless as Doves, or not.

I wonder if Watchman Nee discovered that Christians lie from dealing with Witness Lee?

He lied in the court room, defending his position -- basically saying "I am not the Acting God in my movement" -- and mission, in a secular setting.

If Lee lies, and we know he did, then what about his whole theology? Is that shot thru with holes of lies too? That's enough to cause pause, and a step back, from his systematized theological hermeneutics, he called "God's Economy."
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Old 08-24-2011, 01:24 PM   #29
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I've seen that many times. I like it. It brings a smile to my face. It's true.

But it should be re-worded. "Christians aren't perfect, just forgiven, so don't expect them to be anything special, or more trustworthy."

So we should always factor that Christians lie into our relations. Often, if you care and pay attention, they lie to support their belief system. That has to be factored into their belief system too, as to entire validity.
What you say, awareness, is true, but incomplete. Yes, Christians can lie and cheat and steal. I have tasted this first hand. I have seen one I love become no different than a Judas. What I went thru was literally worse than murder.

But there is more to the story. Shall I also give you all my horror stories of unbelievers who have wronged me? Unbelievers who have lied, cheated, stolen, deceived, cussed me out, discredited me, punched me out, etc. I'll still take the children of God any day of the week.

When I read your story about Mel P getting in your face about you asking permission what to think, I chuckle. Is that all you suffered? Sure it is insulting, but I have been thru worse things at work. That's just how life is sometimes. And now we have the grace of God!
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Old 08-24-2011, 02:07 PM   #30
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If Lee lies, and we know he did, then what about his whole theology? Is that shot thru with holes of lies too? That's enough to cause pause, and a step back, from his systematized theological hermeneutics, he called "God's Economy."
Hi Harold,
Most of us who left the LC pretty much left because we saw the holes in Lee's 'theology'. Some who questioned it, eventually got thrown out but most of us just left. Rarely do I read Nee's works and even more rare, Lee's works! Too many holes!

Most of us did not come into the LC because we knew of Lee or Nee. Most of us came in because we were 'love' bombed. And the Love I was bombed with was the Love of Jesus. His Love saved me. The saints that initially cared for me was just an added plus at the time.

I have learned (and am still learning) not to trust in any person's theology just because it sounds good. I am also learning the less I am concerned whether people are 'good' Christians or 'phony' Christians, and the more I focus on my relationship with the Lord Jesus, I am better off and so is everyone else around me. ( & YES there are a lot of phony Christians. We all know this. )

Just be careful Harold, that you don't do what the Ephesians did: hate the works of the so called Christians so much that you end up losing your first Love. It's not worth it.

From the Amplified version, here's the letter to the Ephesians from Revelation 2
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I know your industry and activities, laborious toil and trouble, and your patient endurance, and how you cannot tolerate wicked [men] and have tested and critically appraised those who call [themselves] apostles (special messengers of Christ) and yet are not, and have found them to be impostors and liars....[in your favor and to your credit]: you hate the works of the Nicolaitans [what they are doing as corrupters of the people], which I Myself also detest.

I know you are enduring patiently and are bearing up for My Name's sake, and you have not fainted or become exhausted or grown weary.

But I have this [one charge to make] against you: that you have left (abandoned) the Love that you had at first [you have deserted Me, your first Love].

Peace be Harold.

CMW
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Old 08-24-2011, 02:23 PM   #31
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What you say, awareness, is true, but incomplete. Yes, Christians can lie and cheat and steal. I have tasted this first hand. I have seen one I love become no different than a Judas. What I went thru was literally worse than murder.

But there is more to the story. Shall I also give you all my horror stories of unbelievers who have wronged me? Unbelievers who have lied, cheated, stolen, deceived, cussed me out, discredited me, punched me out, etc. I'll still take the children of God any day of the week.

When I read your story about Mel P getting in your face about you asking permission what to think, I chuckle. Is that all you suffered? Sure it is insulting, but I have been thru worse things at work. That's just how life is sometimes. And now we have the grace of God!
Good points and good words bro Ohio. Thanks.... Banks are bigger thieves than Christians ... on a much grander scale ... and we still bank ....
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Old 08-24-2011, 02:35 PM   #32
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Good points and good words bro Ohio. Thanks.... Banks are bigger thieves than Christians ... on a much grander scale ... and we still bank ....
Harold, you have to stop this habit of generalizing. Everything you say is a generalization.

That's a joke, son.
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Old 08-24-2011, 02:50 PM   #33
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Harold, you have to stop this habit of generalizing. Everything you say is a generalization.

That's a joke, son.
I love ya bro ... I'm too dumb to provide details....
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Old 08-24-2011, 03:21 PM   #34
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I've seen that many times. I like it. It brings a smile to my face. It's true.

But it should be re-worded. "Christians aren't perfect, just forgiven, so don't expect them to be anything special, or more trustworthy."

So we should always factor that Christians lie into our relations. Often, if you care and pay attention, they lie to support their belief system. That has to be factored into their belief system too, as to entire validity.

That's the way it is. Be wise as serpents, and harmless as Doves, or not.

I wonder if Watchman Nee discovered that Christians lie from dealing with Witness Lee?

He lied in the court room, defending his position -- basically saying "I am not the Acting God in my movement" -- and mission, in a secular setting.

If Lee lies, and we know he did, then what about his whole theology? Is that shot thru with holes of lies too? That's enough to cause pause, and a step back, from his systematized theological hermeneutics, he called "God's Economy."
They told me that lying is different.

I may be starting to believe them...
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Old 08-24-2011, 03:41 PM   #35
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Good points and good words bro Ohio. Thanks.... Banks are bigger thieves than Christians ... on a much grander scale ... and we still bank ....
Funny!

I sold a house and took the money to the bank. The agent asks me and wifey for SSN, photo driver's license, mother's maiden name, checks our credit history, yada, yada.

So I looked at the manager in wonder and said, "I am putting $250k in your bank, and you want all that info on me, and I don't even know your name! I want to check your SSN, photo driver's license, mother's maiden name, credit history, etc."

He laughs and said, "you know the patriot act has changed everything."

"I still want to hold your driver's license."
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Old 08-29-2011, 10:17 AM   #36
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Hi Awareness,

I do think its awful you experienced such hardship and treatment from other "Christians".

But please be careful, do not interpret a subjective sampled experience to define a objective statement.

Because I see a doctor selling drugs does not mean that all doctors sell drugs. Just because people have done "Horrendous" things under the name of religion does not mean all religion is bad.

I am not aware of your religious beliefs Awareness but I assure you that the world view that Christians have on suffering, pain and love is by far the best answer. I can elaborate on that If you wish.
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Old 08-29-2011, 11:11 AM   #37
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So would all the forgers of Christian books attributed to apostolic leaders in the first and second centuries say. But they would be liars.

And you can elaborate all you want -- please do -- but that doesn't mean I'm gonna trust someone just because they claim to be Christian.
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Old 08-29-2011, 11:14 AM   #38
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But how quickly you trust any and all those who file complaints against Christians and the Bible, never bothering to verify any of the facts.
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Old 08-29-2011, 11:58 AM   #39
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But how quickly you trust any and all those who file complaints against Christians and the Bible, never bothering to verify any of the facts.
Yer clairvoyance of me falls short brother Ohio...
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Old 08-29-2011, 01:34 PM   #40
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Hey Awareness,

No one asked you to trust a christian,

I dont trust all of my christian friends as much as I would like,

Were ALL human and we ALL make mistakes.

But sorry I didnt really catch your premise or objection.

Was it that Christianity or "Religion" did not contribute to the moral and philosophical development of the human race? That human beings would behave the same with or without religion?
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Old 08-29-2011, 02:02 PM   #41
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Hey Awareness,

No one asked you to trust a christian,

I dont trust all of my christian friends as much as I would like,

Were ALL human and we ALL make mistakes.

But sorry I didnt really catch your premise or objection.

Was it that Christianity or "Religion" did not contribute to the moral and philosophical development of the human race? That human beings would behave the same with or without religion?
Gen 6:6 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

Religion has not only failed to change human nature. Religion has actually been used to commit atrocities against other humans. So any good it has done is a wash at best ....

Jesus came and went and human nature didn't change ... sorry to pop yer bubble ... if you had/have one.
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Old 08-29-2011, 02:08 PM   #42
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So would all the forgers of Christian books attributed to apostolic leaders in the first and second centuries say. But they would be liars.

And you can elaborate all you want -- please do -- but that doesn't mean I'm gonna trust someone just because they claim to be Christian.
How about Reagan's answer "trust but verify"
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Old 08-29-2011, 02:11 PM   #43
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Gen 6:6 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

Religion has not only failed to change human nature. Religion has actually been used to commit atrocities against other humans. So any good it has done is a wash at best ....

Jesus came and went and human nature didn't change ... sorry to pop yer bubble ... if you had/have one.
They just need to eat more of Jesus.

Seriously, are you saying that Jesus came and went and Peter's human nature wasn't changed? Because, if I read the NT correctly Paul was a changed man and Peter was a changed man, and probably a few others were changed as well.
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Old 08-29-2011, 03:21 PM   #44
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They just need to eat more of Jesus.

Seriously, are you saying that Jesus came and went and Peter's human nature wasn't changed? Because, if I read the NT correctly Paul was a changed man and Peter was a changed man, and probably a few others were changed as well.
Yet the nature of humankind has not been changed....take a look around the world, we are as uncivilized as we've ever been ... if not more cuz we have WMDs.
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Old 08-29-2011, 04:01 PM   #45
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Gen 6:6 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

Religion has not only failed to change human nature. Religion has actually been used to commit atrocities against other humans. So any good it has done is a wash at best ....

Jesus came and went and human nature didn't change ... sorry to pop yer bubble ... if you had/have one.
Using the same method of thinking I would say governments have done society NO good and has been used to commit atrocities among human beings.

We should have no governments because Communism, Capitalism, World Wars, have all been induced by tyrannical rule. Hitlers and his regime killed millions and millions of people so we should have no governments.

If I were Jewish and were persecuted by the Hitlers regime I would hate democracy because it also is another form of government. My experience with governments is that they do nothing but restrict your freedoms and persecute you.

I can apply that to method of thinking to anything.

Do not let YOUR experience define what is objectively true or not.

If you an atheist, do not let opinion get in the way of researching what is really true. Christopher Hitchens feels about religion exactly the same way if not more than you. Christopher hates religion because he believes it poisons everything. He actively debates well known theologians in attempt to set free the "shackles" that religious organizations have against people.

Why does he hate religion? He looks at the crusades, catholic molestation cases and the list can go on and on.

But he is forgetting one thing, the existence of God is not defined by people and is independent of religious actions. Just because a doctor kills doesnt mean medicine is murderous. When Bill Clinton committed adultery it doesn't mean that all Presidents are sex maniacs.

You cannot look at a subset of experiences and occurrences and apply it to the entire entity. You cannot win or lose this argument ever because it is circular. There will always be great examples of Christianity and horrible examples of Christianity. There will always be great examples of working governments and horribly corrupt ones. It does not mean that it does not work.

Look at the problem logically and without opinionated biases and only then will you start to see why Christianity has a world view that works.
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Old 08-29-2011, 06:29 PM   #46
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Nice thoughts and points bro Leomom.

Some additional comments :

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Using the same method of thinking I would say governments have done society NO good and has been used to commit atrocities among human beings.
Government and religion, not much difference. Even political party's are like a religious choice.

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We should have no governments because Communism, Capitalism, World Wars, have all been induced by tyrannical rule. Hitlers and his regime killed millions and millions of people so we should have no governments.
Sometimes I wonder why we do governments.

Quote:
If I were Jewish and were persecuted by the Hitlers regime I would hate democracy because it also is another form of government.
Democracy : Two sheep and four wolves deciding what's fer dinner.

Quote:
My experience with governments is that they do nothing but restrict your freedoms and persecute you.
Yep, sado/masochistic ... what did the sadist say to the masochistic when he asked the sadist to hurt him? Answer : NO ...

Quote:
Do not let YOUR experience define what is objectively true or not.
Why not?

Quote:
Christopher Hitchens feels about religion exactly the same way if not more than you. Christopher hates religion because he believes it poisons everything. He actively debates well known theologians in attempt to set free the "shackles" that religious organizations have against people.
Poor Hitchens ... he's dying from cancer. We should pray for him.

Quote:
Why does he hate religion? He looks at the crusades, catholic molestation cases and the list can go on and on.
He says : God is not great. Cuz we've given God a bad name. Shame on us.

Quote:
But he is forgetting one thing, the existence of God is not defined by people and is independent of religious actions. Just because a doctor kills doesnt mean medicine is murderous.
So it's not wise to just trust your doctor.

Quote:
When Bill Clinton committed adultery it doesn't mean that all Presidents are sex maniacs.
But many have been ... but didn't get caught like Clintoon.

Quote:
You cannot look at a subset of experiences and occurrences and apply it to the entire entity.
Who says?

Quote:
You cannot win or lose this argument ever because it is circular.
Not trying to win anything... How about you win ...

Quote:
There will always be great examples of Christianity and horrible examples of Christianity.
So you are saying take the bad with the good? Just accept the failings of human nature cuz it can't be changed? That's my point ; nothing changes human nature. When it comes to human nature, all religions, all philosophies, and all psychologies have failed us. Human nature wins.

Quote:
Look at the problem logically and without opinionated biases and only then will you start to see why Christianity has a world view that works.
And fails to work to.
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Old 08-29-2011, 06:42 PM   #47
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Sometimes I wonder why we do governments.
We are like the Israelites of old: "Weee want a King!! Weee want a king!!"
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Old 08-29-2011, 07:38 PM   #48
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Gen 6:6 And it repented the LORD that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart.

Religion has not only failed to change human nature. Religion has actually been used to commit atrocities against other humans. So any good it has done is a wash at best ....

Jesus came and went and human nature didn't change ... sorry to pop yer bubble ... if you had/have one.

Once again, I am going to challenge this thinly disguised condemnation of the coming of Jesus Christ. awareness pulls out distorted comments from Genesis, coupled with the depravity of man, to prove that the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Christ has done nothing good for man.

God has wasted His time, Jesus Christ is an abject failure, the Spirit of God has nothing good to show us, and those pathetic Christians can't be trusted with the time of day -- these the continual assertions that awareness thrusts upon the forum. Let's be honest folks, the issues which awareness has are far deeper than his dozen or so abysmal years with WL and the LC's.

Has no life ever been changed by Jesus Christ? Has the love of God never affected mankind? Has the Spirit of God failed so miserably that not one soul has gone to the grave different than at birth? awareness would say "no, religion has failed to change human nature."

Methinks awareness speaks only for himself. His generalizations should apply to himself only. There is a bubble that needs to be popped -- and that's the bubble that awareness lives in.
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Old 08-30-2011, 07:25 AM   #49
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Once again, I am going to challenge this thinly disguised condemnation of the coming of Jesus Christ. awareness pulls out distorted comments from Genesis, coupled with the depravity of man, to prove that the incarnation, death, and resurrection of Christ has done nothing good for man.

God has wasted His time, Jesus Christ is an abject failure, the Spirit of God has nothing good to show us, and those pathetic Christians can't be trusted with the time of day -- these the continual assertions that awareness thrusts upon the forum. Let's be honest folks, the issues which awareness has are far deeper than his dozen or so abysmal years with WL and the LC's.

Has no life ever been changed by Jesus Christ? Has the love of God never affected mankind? Has the Spirit of God failed so miserably that not one soul has gone to the grave different than at birth? awareness would say "no, religion has failed to change human nature."

Methinks awareness speaks only for himself. His generalizations should apply to himself only. There is a bubble that needs to be popped -- and that's the bubble that awareness lives in.
I'm so encouraged for you bro Ohio. For someone that spent decades in a movement that eschewed religion, you now sure do jump quickly to its defense. That means you are finally shaking off the local church kool-aid. Good for you. I'm so happy for you.

I know Awareness sounds so gloomy about human nature. But why do you suppose that in the end God wipes out so many people? Isn't it likely that He sees how untenable human nature is, or that the writers of the end-time accounts saw how untenable human nature is?

And as far as Jesus and the Holy Spirit changing people for the good, maybe it would be best for your blood pressure if we don't go into that matter right now. Just the local church provides some bad examples in that regard ... and there are many many more examples.

And bro Ohio, we all live in a bubble. We can't help it ... we live within the limitations of our human perceptions ...
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Old 08-30-2011, 10:02 AM   #50
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Yet the nature of humankind has not been changed....take a look around the world, we are as uncivilized as we've ever been ... if not more cuz we have WMDs.
I have taken a look around the world. I went to school in Europe as well as the US, I went to college in Texas and visited Mexico frequently, I have lived in the Far East for about 8 years. I have come to the conclusion that the best form of Govt on this planet is the US, and we are painfully aware of what a sad commentary that is on human govt. In fact, the only person in human history I would want running the govt is the Lord Jesus. Apart from Him all other great men seem inadequate in one way or another.

I have also seen the depravity of man. I worked as a stock broker for years, where dollars made could usually be equated with lies told. As a HS teacher I see a lot of the unvarnished depravity of man before people mature enough to become more deceitfully wicked. I have come to the conclusion that without Christ and the church the world would be hell on earth. And I fully understand that most in the meetings are not "transformed" saints.

I do see the technological marvels and wonders of this age. I am very impressed with how ever increasing efficiency and productivity has kept pace with exponential population growth so that we can continue to feed the world. It is really a miracle that could never have been accomplished with technology from 50 years ago. Just as our technology to feed and heal people has grown miraculously, so has our ability to track them, hunt them, and kill them. From an amoral viewpoint this also is truly amazing.

Once again, this view has impressed me even more with how much we need Jesus as Lord.
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Old 08-30-2011, 11:24 AM   #51
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Discussion of the depravity of humanity brings to mind the following questions for your consideration:

"If God is willing to prevent evil, but is not able to

Then he is not omnipotent.

If he is able, but not willing
Then he is malevolent.

If he is both able and willing
Then whence cometh evil?

If he is neither able nor willing
Then why call him God?"
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Old 08-30-2011, 01:11 PM   #52
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Discussion of the depravity of humanity brings to mind the following questions for your consideration:

"If God is willing to prevent evil, but is not able to

Then he is not omnipotent.

If he is able, but not willing
Then he is malevolent.

If he is both able and willing
Then whence cometh evil?

If he is neither able nor willing
Then why call him God?"
God has permitted evil because he has a morally sufficient reason to do so. The existence of evil does not put into question the 3 omni's of God.

Once we state that God has a morally sufficent reason to permit evil, the premise that God does not exist because evil exists is no longer a objective argument but has turned into a subjective premise based on ones perception of the world.

Hence now we have Awareness's dilemma. He has not seen a change in human nature based on his subset of experiences. God is not needed because he has not seen any change in any Christians that claim to be saved by God.

This is tough because this is beyond a intellectual objection that can be proved or dis proved but an emotional one. One can only hope that God will provide him with a witness to show that God does infact change us and fill us with the holy spirit till our cup overflows. I personally have been changed due to the holy spirit and know that I would have been a much different person without God in my life. But regardless all we can do is plant the seed and let God do the rest.
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Old 08-30-2011, 01:52 PM   #53
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God has permitted evil because he has a morally sufficient reason to do so.
What is the morally sufficient reason for permitting evil?

Quote:
The existence of evil does not put into question the 3 omni's of God.
If there were a morally sufficient reason, that might be the case.

Quote:
Once we state that God has a morally sufficent reason to permit evil, the premise that God does not exist because evil exists is no longer a objective argument but has turned into a subjective premise based on ones perception of the world.
No. All you have done is baldly assert that there is a morally sufficient reason for evil. You have not supported your premise with any argument to justify accepting it.

Quote:
Hence now we have Awareness's dilemma. He has not seen a change in human nature based on his subset of experiences. God is not needed because he has not seen any change in any Christians that claim to be saved by God.

This is tough because this is beyond a intellectual objection that can be proved or dis proved but an emotional one. One can only hope that God will provide him with a witness to show that God does infact change us and fill us with the holy spirit till our cup overflows. I personally have been changed due to the holy spirit and know that I would have been a much different person without God in my life. But regardless all we can do is plant the seed and let God do the rest.
Now that's subjective. Maybe Harold is looking for an observable, quantifiable change in humanity rather than one that is based on faith alone. Jesus and Paul apparently thought the Kingdom of God would be fully manifest in their lifetime. Instead what we have is a kingdom that is evident only to faith. Perhaps Harold's dissappointment lies in that fact.
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Old 08-30-2011, 02:02 PM   #54
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Originally Posted by zeek View Post
Discussion of the depravity of humanity brings to mind the following questions for your consideration:

"If God is willing to prevent evil, but is not able to

Then he is not omnipotent.

If he is able, but not willing
Then he is malevolent.

If he is both able and willing
Then whence cometh evil?

If he is neither able nor willing
Then why call him God?"
Fine. God is willing to prevent evil, He is able to, and His plan is being carried out before your eyes. The Earth is 4.6 billion years old, but only a fraction of the age of the universe which is estimated around 13 billion years. According to the NT plan it will take approximately 10,000 years for the entire plan on dealing with Evil to be carried out. That is less than one millionth of the age of the universe.

Let's put that into a time frame we can understand. I worked on the Irving meeting hall from the very beginning until the Peter Training when it held 2,000 saints. That took 18 months, and most of those days were 16 hour days. But lets assume we were working for 24 hours a day, because for quite a bit of the project there was a night crew.

Therefore, if some "project" took slightly less than 38 seconds it would be analagous to the amount of time God is spending on dealing with evil.
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Old 08-30-2011, 02:34 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by ZNPaaneah View Post
Fine. God is willing to prevent evil, He is able to, and His plan is being carried out before your eyes. The Earth is 4.6 billion years old, but only a fraction of the age of the universe which is estimated around 13 billion years. According to the NT plan it will take approximately 10,000 years for the entire plan on dealing with Evil to be carried out. That is less than one millionth of the age of the universe.

Let's put that into a time frame we can understand. I worked on the Irving meeting hall from the very beginning until the Peter Training when it held 2,000 saints. That took 18 months, and most of those days were 16 hour days. But lets assume we were working for 24 hours a day, because for quite a bit of the project there was a night crew.

Therefore, if some "project" took slightly less than 38 seconds it would be analagous to the amount of time God is spending on dealing with evil.
If God is willing to prevent evil, why did God allow it in the first place? Why wouldn’t an all good God create an all good world?
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Old 08-30-2011, 02:45 PM   #56
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What is the morally sufficient reason for permitting evil?
If there were a morally sufficient reason, that might be the case.
No. All you have done is baldly assert that there is a morally sufficient reason for evil. You have not supported your premise with any argument to justify accepting it.
Now that's subjective. Maybe Harold is looking for an observable, quantifiable change in humanity rather than one that is based on faith alone. Jesus and Paul apparently thought the Kingdom of God would be fully manifest in their lifetime. Instead what we have is a kingdom that is evident only to faith. Perhaps Harold's dissappointment lies in that fact.
How do you guys quote like that?

So elaborating,

Premise, God cannot exist because evil exists.

I insert, unless God has a morally sufficient reason to do so. As long as this is plausible then the premise is incorrect.

Ex. I meet Zeek for the first time and he says he drove his Jeep here in the rain. I look at the parking lot and I do not see a jeep. Therefore since the Jeep is not in the parking lot then Zeek did not drive here. I assert this and Zeek told me he likes to walking in the rain and therefore parked really far away and walked here. Premise no longer stands. Notice it does not have to be probable, just plausible that he likes to walk and it defeats the premise. Now the premise must change to.
" I do not think it is plausible for you to like walking long distances in the rain when you have a car" - Note this is a very different argument then the first.

Now the question is why does God permit evil. You can go about this argument in many aspects. I hope I can convey some of it as books and books have been written on this subject.

1. Free will argument. Due to the fact the humans have choice, and we originally chose to dis-obey God, sin and evil entered. God did not create mindless drones. He wants us to love and choose him.

Rebuttal - This isnt a game, there is so much evil, why cant he get rid of some or limit some.

In another reality I could fashion my hand into a sword. Or in another reality a paper cut was the worst thing that can happen to you.

2. When a first born is born into the world. The parents do everything for their kid. As he grows up he chooses to learn how to hold a cup, tie his own shoe laces, cross a street by himself, go to school, pick a university, a wife have kids himself. Part of parenting is knowing how to let go but doing your best to supply your kids with knowledge of right and wrong and good decision making skills. Their is NO guarantee however that perfect parents will yield perfect children. It is ultimately the child's choice to choose his ways no matter the influence. Sure the parents could put their kids in a padded white room, isolate all contact from other humans and subject him to no fear no evil no life. But of course we all know that wouldnt be humane. If God wanted mindless worship or beings that do as their told every time and all the time it wouldnt be us.

3. The truth is and according to the bible, God loves all of us. His heart breaks when we sin and are separated from him. The fact is that God is good and holy. He cannot and does not accept sin or evil so unfortunately their is Gods wrath. Evil is not from God but in his absence hence no contradiction.

4. The bible talks alot about suffering. It does not ignore it. Anyways im at work so I'll elaborate on it next time but we can obtain joy and peace through suffering. "Take Joy my brothers when you face trials of many kinds. For the testing of your faith develops perseverance" Christianity has the best (in my opinion) world view on suffering.

Anyways I hope I didnt mess that explanation up too bad and made some sense in it.

I luv this stuff and apologetics. I recommend looking up some atheist and theist debates as it is very useful knowledge. Not required for faith as we are saved by faith alone but never the less interesting.
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Old 08-30-2011, 02:55 PM   #57
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If God is willing to prevent evil, why did God allow it in the first place? Why wouldn’t an all good God create an all good world?
Your questions reminds me of the book of Job.

Job 38:1 Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said,
38:2 Who is this that darkeneth counsel by words without knowledge?
38:3 Gird up now thy loins like a man; for I will demand of thee, and answer thou me.
38:4 Where wast thou when I laid the foundations of the earth?

Where were you when God laid the foundation of the Earth? Oh yeah, right, you were no where. Yet you darken counsel by words without knowledge. You don't know how to lay the foundation of the Earth, much less the foundation of a man.

God is building a man. To do that he needs to lay the foundation.

If you have ever been to Irving and seen the meeting hall, know this, all that concrete was poured onto cardboard boxes. Yes, the first floor of the Irving meeting hall sits on cardboard boxes which have long since decayed. Why would someone who wants a building that will be strong and last long build on cardboard? Can you tell me?

Job 40:1 Moreover the LORD answered Job, and said,
40:2 Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty instruct him? he that reproveth God, let him answer it.

So, come on, you want to talk about what a bad job God did in His creation, surely you can answer a simple little question like that.

Job 40:6 Then answered the LORD unto Job out of the whirlwind, and said,
40:7 Gird up thy loins now like a man: I will demand of thee, and declare thou unto me.
40:8 Wilt thou also disannul my judgment? wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous?
40:9 Hast thou an arm like God? or canst thou thunder with a voice like him?

Surely you are aware that man was made in the image and likeness of God. Seeing that this is so, do you have an arm like God? Do you have a voice like God? If not, why not?! You are a poor excuse for a man.

Job 40:10 Deck thyself now with majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty.
40:11 Cast abroad the rage of thy wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him.
40:12 Look on every one that is proud, and bring him low; and tread down the wicked in their place.
40:13 Hide them in the dust together; and bind their faces in secret.
40:14 Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee.

You condemn God for not dealing with sin, yet you were made in the image and likeness of God. You should tread down the wicked in their place. Since you don't, you are a poor excuse for a man. Jesus did this. Jesus has an arm like God, He has a voice like God, he tread the wicked down in their place and God confessed that Jesus is the savior of all mankind. Jesus is our prototype. That is why the NT talks about a "New" creation. This is a man made in the image of God, with His life and nature, and that can exercise dominion over the earth.
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Old 08-30-2011, 03:37 PM   #58
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3. The truth is and according to the bible, God loves all of us. His heart breaks when we sin and are separated from him. The fact is that God is good and holy. He cannot and does not accept sin or evil so unfortunately their is Gods wrath. Evil is not from God but in his absence hence no contradiction.
Your answers seem to be too contrived to be believed.

Isa 45:7 I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.
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Old 08-30-2011, 06:56 PM   #59
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How do you guys quote like that?
To create quotes :

Start with the word "quote" (not with the scare quotes - "") with square brackets before and after- like this = [quote] - . At the end of the quoted material put, the word "quote" again with square brackets, but with also a / before the q. - like this = [/.quote] = without the dot. You can even do "quote=anyname" [quote=anyname] with square brackets and it will put the name of the poster of the desired quoted material. It's easy once you do it one or twice. Try it, experiment, click "preview" to see if it worked. If not, try again. You'll see how it works and get it...

[quote] at the start, and to close the quoted material its [/..quote] without the two dots ..
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Old 08-30-2011, 07:01 PM   #60
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[QUOTE=awareness;14079]To create quotes :

Start with the word "quote" (not with the scare quotes - "") with square brackets before and after- like this = [quote] - . At the end of the quoted material put, the word "quote" again with square brackets, but with also a / before the q. - like this = [/.quote] = without the dot. You can even do "quote=anyname"
Quote:
Originally Posted by anyname
with square brackets and it will put the name of the poster of the desired quoted material. It's easy once you do it one or twice.
Here are some easier instructions. Hit the quote button down below, you sill see that it says {QUOTE=znpaaneah;14080} blah blah blah {/QUOTE}

I switched the brackets to the Alfred Hitchcock so that you could see what I am talking about.

All you need to do is cut and paste the first line in front of the quote and end the quote by cutting and pasting the last line.
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Old 08-30-2011, 07:09 PM   #61
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[QUOTE=ZNPaaneah;14081][QUOTE=awareness;14079]To create quotes :

Start with the word "quote" (not with the scare quotes - "") with square brackets before and after- like this =
Quote:
- . At the end of the quoted material put, the word "quote" again with square brackets, but with also a / before the q. - like this = [/.quote] = without the dot. You can even do "quote=anyname"

Here are some easier instructions. Hit the quote button down below, you sill see that it says {QUOTE=znpaaneah;14080} blah blah blah {/QUOTE}

I switched the brackets to the Alfred Hitchcock so that you could see what I am talking about.

All you need to do is cut and paste the first line in front of the quote and end the quote by cutting and pasting the last line.
Good advice as well. You can also highlight the material and click the box at the top and it will place the "quote" and close quote "/quote" with proper brackets and all...
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Old 08-30-2011, 07:53 PM   #62
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Originally Posted by ZNPaaneah View Post
Your questions reminds me of the book of Job.
The book of Job is a literary device, attempting to answer why bad things happen to good people. The book of Job is actually comedy. Don't get me started. I'm trying to give bro Ohio a break. Cuz I love him.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:29 AM   #63
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The book of Job is actually comedy.
And that comment is tragedy.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:54 AM   #64
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And that comment is tragedy.
rotflmao ... And you are right. I stand corrected. The book of Job is a comedic/tragedy.

I could elaborate ... if you like. But you and others prolly won't like it.

After my son died I was drawn to read the book of Job. So I read it over and over again, until it hit me, and I busted out laughing. The book has never been the same since to me. It really makes God, and the devil, buffoons.
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Old 08-31-2011, 07:14 AM   #65
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Quote:
How do you guys quote like that?

Earlier I quoted a paraphrase of Epicurus’ questions. I’m didn’t quote anybody in the post you responded to.

Quote:
Premise, God cannot exist because evil exists.


I insert, unless God has a morally sufficient reason to do so. As long as this is plausible then the premise is incorrect.

1. Free will argument. Due to the fact the humans have choice, and we originally chose to dis-obey God, sin and evil entered. God did not create mindless drones. He wants us to love and choose him.

Yes but have do we really know that all have chosen to disobey? Further, humans aren’t the only sources of evil. There are also natural catastrophes, so called “acts of God” Also, infants suffer evil even before they have the ability to make a choice. How do explain that?


Quote:
In another reality I could fashion my hand into a sword. Or in another reality a paper cut was the worst thing that can happen to you.
I’m not sure where you are going with this.

Quote:
2. When a first born is born into the world. The parents do everything for their kid. As he grows up he chooses to learn how to hold a cup, tie his own shoe laces, cross a street by himself, go to school, pick a university, a wife have kids himself. Part of parenting is knowing how to let go but doing your best to supply your kids with knowledge of right and wrong and good decision making skills. Their is NO guarantee however that perfect parents will yield perfect children. It is ultimately the child's choice to choose his ways no matter the influence. Sure the parents could put their kids in a padded white room, isolate all contact from other humans and subject him to no fear no evil no life. But of course we all know that wouldnt be humane. If God wanted mindless worship or beings that do as their told every time and all the time it wouldnt be us.

I answered this argument above.

Quote:
3. The truth is and according to the bible, God loves all of us. His heart breaks when we sin and are separated from him. The fact is that God is good and holy. He cannot and does not accept sin or evil so unfortunately their is Gods wrath. Evil is not from God but in his absence hence no contradiction.


That does not answer the question why God allows innocents to suffer.

Quote:
4. The bible talks alot about suffering. It does not ignore it. Anyways im at work so I'll elaborate on it next time but we can obtain joy and peace through suffering. "Take Joy my brothers when you face trials of many kinds. For the testing of your faith develops perseverance" Christianity has the best (in my opinion) world view on suffering.


That’s fine for you and me. But what about the young child or the mentally retarded who do not have the ability to understand why they are suffering? Why does God allow them to suffer?

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Old 08-31-2011, 07:52 AM   #66
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Where were you when God laid the foundation of the Earth? Oh yeah, right, you were no where. Yet you darken counsel by words without knowledge. You don't know how to lay the foundation of the Earth, much less the foundation of a man.
First, this passage assumes a 3 tier universe in which the earth rests on a foundation. Due to modern science we now know that the earth is a small planet in a vast universe. Second, the passage portrays God as a powerful tyrant who shouts down Job for asking a question. Questioning is the beginning of knowledge and science. It is a natural human capacity which should not be suppressed. Third, God doesn’t answer the question. He merely illustrates his power and authority in order to delegitimize Job questioning thus leaving little Job on the moral high ground nonetheless.


Quote:
God is building a man. To do that he needs to lay the foundation.


Maybe. That is an answer of faith. The evidence is ambiguous to say the least.


Quote:
If you have ever been to Irving and seen the meeting hall, know this, all that concrete was poured onto cardboard boxes. Yes, the first floor of the Irving meeting hall sits on cardboard boxes which have long since decayed. Why would someone who wants a building that will be strong and last long build on cardboard? Can you tell me?

No and it seems irrelevant to me.

Quote:
Job 40:1 Moreover the LORD answered Job, and said,
40:2 Shall he that contendeth with the Almighty instruct him? he that reproveth God, let him answer it.

So, come on, you want to talk about what a bad job God did in His creation, surely you can answer a simple little question like that.
Well sure, we could be ignorant of some greater good that justifies things like infants born with hideous birth defects. But asserting that there is an adequate reasonable answer doesn’t supply one. The all powerful God is merely shouting down Job saying the equivalent of “Who do you think you are? I don’t want to hear and will not answer your questions. Shut up or I’ll zap you to hell.”

Quote:
Job 40:6 Then answered the LORD unto Job out of the whirlwind, and said,
40:7 Gird up thy loins now like a man: I will demand of thee, and declare thou unto me.
40:8 Wilt thou also disannul my judgment? wilt thou condemn me, that thou mayest be righteous?
40:9 Hast thou an arm like God? or canst thou thunder with a voice like him?
Again God overpowers Job like the tornado that whipped through the southern US in April. He flaunts his big bicep and shouts as loud as thunder. Clearly he does not like the question. Maybe he doesn’t have a good answer. If he does, he doesn’t give it in this story.

Quote:
Surely you are aware that man was made in the image and likeness of God. Seeing that this is so, do you have an arm like God? Do you have a voice like God? If not, why not?! You are a poor excuse for a man.
I just answered that. I'll do the Christian thing, turn the other virtual cheek and not take your comment personally.

Quote:
Job 40:10 Deck thyself now with majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty.
40:11 Cast abroad the rage of thy wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him.
40:12 Look on every one that is proud, and bring him low; and tread down the wicked in their place.
40:13 Hide them in the dust together; and bind their faces in secret.
40:14 Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee.
Quote:
You condemn God for not dealing with sin, yet you were made in the image and likeness of God. You should tread down the wicked in their place. Since you don't, you are a poor excuse for a man. Jesus did this. Jesus has an arm like God, He has a voice like God, he tread the wicked down in their place and God confessed that Jesus is the savior of all mankind. Jesus is our prototype. That is why the NT talks about a "New" creation. This is a man made in the image of God, with His life and nature, and that can exercise dominion over the earth.
I’m not condemning anybody I’m just asking questions. What would Jesus do? According to the Gospels Jesus asked questions frequently during his ministering years up to and including when he was put on trial by the Sanhedrin and Pilate. Jesus healed and even raised a few from the dead in Palestine. But presumably people were suffering and dying all over the rest of the world at that time as they are now. His “strong arm” wasn’t helping them.

I’m not sure where you are going with the “dominion” remark. Does that mean you are a Dominionist like Sarah Palin and Rick Perry? If so, do you think America is or ought to be a theocracy?
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Old 08-31-2011, 08:01 AM   #67
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Default Re: Elvis has left the building

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... Further, humans aren’t the only sources of evil. There are also natural catastrophes, so called “acts of God” Also, infants suffer evil even before they have the ability to make a choice. How do explain that?

That does not answer the question why God allows innocents to suffer.

That’s fine for you and me. But what about the young child or the mentally retarded who do not have the ability to understand why they are suffering? Why does God allow them to suffer?
Natural Catastrophes:

Volcanoes -- without volcanoes there would be no life on Earth. Perhaps the real natural catastrophe is that people chose to live next to an active volcano and even though they were warned by the ground rumbling or past volcanic activity, they ignored that warning.

Earthquakes -- again, without earthquakes there would be no life on Earth. This involves a discussion on Plate Tectonics and the role it has on life. So again, it is possible to know where the fault zones are and where the truly catastrophic earthquakes would be located. Kobe was one such example, but the catastrophic damage was due to something called liquefaction, or in layman's terms "building on sand". In fact, death and destruction from earthquakes is not from the ground shaking but from buildings collapsing. It is a man made disaster. The solution is simple, study the Earth, earthquake zones require proper construction codes or else find another place to live.

Flooding -- Katrina is our most recent and biggest example. Katrina was man made disaster. Katrina would have been forgotten if the levies had not broken. Levies are man made and any scientist could have shown that once you start to build levies in New Orleans that you are guaranteed, at some point, to fail. Everyone knew this. Which is why those that did lose their homes did not have flood insurance. The insurance company had calculated the risk as so great that you literally had to pay some absurd amount to get flood insurance. Insurance companies even tried to get out of paying those that had hurricane insurance, saying the flood damage was not from the hurricane but from the flood as a result of a man made catastrophe.

We see flooding on the Mississippi and other rivers frequently. This is because the rivers are designed to flood. We even refer to these areas as "flood plains". Why do people build their houses in flood plains? because they can. Why does the local govt allow them to do this? because they get more tax revenue. Why does the Federal govt take tax dollars to bail out people who built their homes in an area that is supposed to flood? Because taxpayers are so stupid they let politicians take their tax dollars and do this. Because of it, these politicians get large campaign contributions from construction companies who then get govt contracts to build boondoggles, which will then get bailed out when the cards come crashing down. If there were no govt bailouts the idiot programs would be curtailed.

Our suffering is temporary and works out an eternal weight of glory.
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Old 08-31-2011, 09:17 AM   #68
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Natural Catastrophes:...
Jesus said "By their fruit ye shall know them."

Based on that principle, we would expect a perfect God to produce a perfect world and an imperfect God to produce an imperfect world.

Why would a perfect God design an imperfect world in which floods, volcanoes, and earthquakes and "stupid"[I'm quoting you] human beings were necessary?
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Old 08-31-2011, 09:36 AM   #69
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The world you are referring to is not the world that God is producing, it is the process to get to that world.

Your question is like asking, we would expect a perfect chef to produce a perfect meal, why would a perfect chef design a mess in the kitchen?

We don't judge whether the meal is perfect by how much of a mess the dishwasher has to clean up.
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Old 08-31-2011, 10:13 AM   #70
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Default Re: Elvis has left, but Jesus is here

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rotflmao ... And you are right. I stand corrected. The book of Job is a comedic/tragedy.

I could elaborate ... if you like. But you and others prolly won't like it.

After my son died I was drawn to read the book of Job. So I read it over and over again, until it hit me, and I busted out laughing. The book has never been the same since to me. It really makes God, and the devil, buffoons.
And that is tragic.

Actually, tragedy added to tragedy.

And you clearly missed the most important parts of the book, no matter how many times you read it.
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Old 08-31-2011, 10:24 AM   #71
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Natural Catastrophes:

Volcanoes -- without volcanoes there would be no life on Earth. Perhaps the real natural catastrophe is that people chose to live next to an active volcano and even though they were warned by the ground rumbling or past volcanic activity, they ignored that warning.

Earthquakes -- again, without earthquakes there would be no life on Earth. This involves a discussion on Plate Tectonics and the role it has on life. So again, it is possible to know where the fault zones are and where the truly catastrophic earthquakes would be located. Kobe was one such example, but the catastrophic damage was due to something called liquefaction, or in layman's terms "building on sand". In fact, death and destruction from earthquakes is not from the ground shaking but from buildings collapsing. It is a man made disaster. The solution is simple, study the Earth, earthquake zones require proper construction codes or else find another place to live.

Flooding -- Katrina is our most recent and biggest example. Katrina was man made disaster. Katrina would have been forgotten if the levies had not broken. Levies are man made and any scientist could have shown that once you start to build levies in New Orleans that you are guaranteed, at some point, to fail. Everyone knew this. Which is why those that did lose their homes did not have flood insurance. The insurance company had calculated the risk as so great that you literally had to pay some absurd amount to get flood insurance. Insurance companies even tried to get out of paying those that had hurricane insurance, saying the flood damage was not from the hurricane but from the flood as a result of a man made catastrophe.

We see flooding on the Mississippi and other rivers frequently. This is because the rivers are designed to flood. We even refer to these areas as "flood plains". Why do people build their houses in flood plains? because they can. Why does the local govt allow them to do this? because they get more tax revenue. Why does the Federal govt take tax dollars to bail out people who built their homes in an area that is supposed to flood? Because taxpayers are so stupid they let politicians take their tax dollars and do this. Because of it, these politicians get large campaign contributions from construction companies who then get govt contracts to build boondoggles, which will then get bailed out when the cards come crashing down. If there were no govt bailouts the idiot programs would be curtailed.

Our suffering is temporary and works out an eternal weight of glory.
While there are true "acts of nature" (I won't say "acts of God" except to admit that the restraint of God allows things that we might not otherwise prefer), the things you mention are clearly stupidity of man.

I have argued for years that if you live in a serious flood plain, oceanside in the obvious hurricane paths, or 6 feet below sea level between a lake and a major river, you get either zero, or at most one crack at a hand out. Once you take a dime of disaster relief, if you go right back where you were, you are on your own. It's like sailing the Pacific Ocean in a life raft and demanding that every ocean-going ship that passes by give you a hand-out rather than letting them take you out of the ocean. If you demand the hand-out, you get one. Then you are on your own.
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Old 08-31-2011, 10:44 AM   #72
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zeek,

The problem with your dismissal of the free will argument is that it was a result of the exercise of man's free will that God chose to take restraints off of the "natural" and even off of the already existing evil in the form of Satan and his followers.

Our problem in deciphering the issues surrounding God and evil is that we constantly presume that a particular characteristic of God is overriding in all ways, especially in the ways that we would want them to be overriding.

So God is righteous, but we demand that love override it in its entirety.

Yet we want God to exercise his righteousness on those we see as willfully evil.

In other words, we want God to decide everything in the way we would. In another discussion, we would have God smite the Muslim extremists, and the workers at abortion clinics, and the gays and lesbians. Or the Mormons. Or the Catholics.

It's a little like the people who holler about having to submit to searches before getting on airplanes, but will blame the government if something happens on an airplane because a terrorist made it through security. We want God to exercise the judgment he has reserved for the end times. And we want it to be the way we would have it be.

I would suggest that if we are to love our neighbor as ourselves, we don't have a very healthy love for ourselves.

You may not have spoken on any particular one of these issues. But th idea is the same. We want God in our image. We don't want a God that is beyond our comprehension. We want to both comprehend him, and somehow prove that he thinks just like we do and therefore whatever we think is right is . . . well . . . right.

We don't want a God who decides to exercise restraint with respect to how nature behaves. How genetics, environment, and evil work to produce poverty, sickness, and more evil. Or how the greedy manage to keep getting more while we righteous ones keep getting less. Solomon said it best. Life is what it is. There is good and evil. There is grief and happiness. Serve your God in it all.
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Old 08-31-2011, 10:53 AM   #73
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Default Re: Elvis has left the building

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Jesus said "By their fruit ye shall know them."

Based on that principle, we would expect a perfect God to produce a perfect world and an imperfect God to produce an imperfect world.

Why would a perfect God design an imperfect world in which floods, volcanoes, and earthquakes and "stupid"[I'm quoting you] human beings were necessary?
Actually, God designed a perfect world. However, he did give man a choice. And based on that choice there were consequences.

Do you presume that there should be no consequences for bad choices?

God already had angels. They were created to simply serve him. For whatever reason, he then created beings — us — that could choose. But despite allowing the choice, wrong choices were not to be left unchallenged.

And what are right choices are his decision, not ours.

Lord, save us from creating you in our image. What a pathetic God that is.

And as for your comment based on Jesus' "by their fruit you will know them," to apply it to God is to duck your responsibility and blame someone else. You might as well be Job's wife and suggest that we curse God and die. Besides, where were you when God laid the foundation of the universe?
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Old 08-31-2011, 10:56 AM   #74
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zeek,

The problem with your dismissal of the free will argument is
Free will? We were born here and will die here regardless of free will. We also suffer catastrophes and such against our free will. In the end what appears to be free will isn't all that free willed. Most of what we go thru in this life has nothing to do with free will. Like they say : **it happens.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:21 AM   #75
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While there are true "acts of nature" (I won't say "acts of God" except to admit that the restraint of God allows things that we might not otherwise prefer), the things you mention are clearly stupidity of man.

I have argued for years that if you live in a serious flood plain, oceanside in the obvious hurricane paths, or 6 feet below sea level between a lake and a major river, you get either zero, or at most one crack at a hand out. Once you take a dime of disaster relief, if you go right back where you were, you are on your own. It's like sailing the Pacific Ocean in a life raft and demanding that every ocean-going ship that passes by give you a hand-out rather than letting them take you out of the ocean. If you demand the hand-out, you get one. Then you are on your own.
This is one of my pet peeves. The US builds flood walls to contain the Mississippi river. This is a stupid thing to do on many, many levels. But it does help in one respect, it makes it easier for boats to navigate the Mississippi. At the time of Mark Twain it was an extremely highly regarded skill to be able to navigate the Mississippi. This levee system is the ultimate boondoggle. Many jobs are created which Politicians take credit for. Because the Politicians hand out these jobs they get millions and millions in campaign contributions from those that look to benefit. In the end, as a result of this boondoggle you have Huge ocean going ships travelling up a river whose surface is above houses only feet away from the flood wall. It is a scary sight if you google the pictures of the 9th ward prior to the flood. Insurance companies realize what is going to go down, so those living in the 9th ward can buy their houses for cheap, they can even get some form of insurance, but they can't get flood insurance. Now this is truly the equivalent of a knife in the back by the govt who is supposed to give out building permits and zoning laws based on things like this. For them to allow the poor (who else would buy a house like this without flood insurance) to buy a house without flood insurance in a zone that clearly requires flood insurance is criminal. In the end who gets scammed? The poor schmucks who owned houses and the tax payer who pays to clean up this mess.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:22 AM   #76
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The world you are referring to is not the world that God is producing, it is the process to get to that world.

Your question is like asking, we would expect a perfect chef to produce a perfect meal, why would a perfect chef design a mess in the kitchen?

We don't judge whether the meal is perfect by how much of a mess the dishwasher has to clean up.
An omnipotent chef could say "Let there be dinner" and instantly a perfect dinner would appear. There would be no need for a long period of messiness for an omnipotent chef.

Likewise if God is omnipotent, he could have produced a perfect world without evil instantly without allowing his creatures to suffer evil. If he couldn't, then he is not omnipotent. If he could have spared us suffering of so many great evils through a long process, but he chose to let us suffer them instead, then how can we but conclude that he is malevolent?
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:24 AM   #77
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Jesus said "By their fruit ye shall know them."

Based on that principle, we would expect a perfect God to produce a perfect world and an imperfect God to produce an imperfect world.

Why would a perfect God design an imperfect world in which floods, volcanoes, and earthquakes and "stupid"[I'm quoting you] human beings were necessary?
Don't you think this line of questioning belongs on another forum, such as an agnostics, atheists, or "we got a bad God" forum?

If the moderator of LocalChurchDiscussions.com is trying to be "fair," and wants to limit the discussion of politics and other unrelated topics, shouldn't the discussion of whether there is a God or not be included?
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:26 AM   #78
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An omnipotent chef could say "Let there be dinner" and instantly a perfect dinner would appear. There would be no need for a long period of messiness for an omnipotent chef.

Likewise if God is omnipotent, he could have produced a perfect world without evil instantly without allowing his creatures to suffer evil. If he couldn't, then he is not omnipotent. If he could have spared us suffering of so many great evils through a long process, but he chose to let us suffer them instead, then how can we but conclude that he is malevolent?
A truly omnipotent God could create two perspectives of time. In His perspective, yes, He snaps his fingers and it is done. In our perspective it is a a painfully slow process in which we move from glory to glory, and this temporary suffering that we go through works out for us an eternal weight of glory. In the end we are trained and impressed by every single misstep that we could take and how important it is and how wise it is to follow God's leading and guiding.

Then not only do we get a perfect world at the snap of God's fingers, but we also get a Body of people who are trained and perfected.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:30 AM   #79
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I have argued for years that if you live in a serious flood plain, oceanside in the obvious hurricane paths, or 6 feet below sea level between a lake and a major river, you get either zero, or at most one crack at a hand out. Once you take a dime of disaster relief, if you go right back where you were, you are on your own. It's like sailing the Pacific Ocean in a life raft and demanding that every ocean-going ship that passes by give you a hand-out rather than letting them take you out of the ocean. If you demand the hand-out, you get one. Then you are on your own.
First time hand-outs become entitlements, then entitlements become rights, and rights are protected by the constitution.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:31 AM   #80
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This is one of my pet peeves. The US builds flood walls to contain the Mississippi river. This is a stupid thing to do on many, many levels. But it does help in one respect, it makes it easier for boats to navigate the Mississippi. At the time of Mark Twain it was an extremely highly regarded skill to be able to navigate the Mississippi. This levee system is the ultimate boondoggle. Many jobs are created which Politicians take credit for. Because the Politicians hand out these jobs they get millions and millions in campaign contributions from those that look to benefit. In the end, as a result of this boondoggle you have Huge ocean going ships travelling up a river whose surface is above houses only feet away from the flood wall. It is a scary sight if you google the pictures of the 9th ward prior to the flood. Insurance companies realize what is going to go down, so those living in the 9th ward can buy their houses for cheap, they can even get some form of insurance, but they can't get flood insurance. Now this is truly the equivalent of a knife in the back by the govt who is supposed to give out building permits and zoning laws based on things like this. For them to allow the poor (who else would buy a house like this without flood insurance) to buy a house without flood insurance in a zone that clearly requires flood insurance is criminal. In the end who gets scammed? The poor schmucks who owned houses and the tax payer who pays to clean up this mess.
I know that I will get grief for this, but New Orleans was a disaster waiting to happen. And since many went back, it will happen again. There is something fundamentally flawed about building houses — or anything for that matter — in what should have been a brackish lake lower than the land (and water) around it, and whose bottom was lower than the sea.

It is like jumping off the Empire State Building and cursing God for gravity.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:34 AM   #81
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First time hand-outs become entitlements, then entitlements become rights, and rights are protected by the constitution.
Actually, those kinds of rights are only protected by Congress and the Supreme Court. Unfortunately, too many equate those with the constitution.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:39 AM   #82
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I know that I will get grief for this, but New Orleans was a disaster waiting to happen. And since many went back, it will happen again. There is something fundamentally flawed about building houses — or anything for that matter — in what should have been a brackish lake lower than the land (and water) around it, and whose bottom was lower than the sea.

It is like jumping off the Empire State Building and cursing God for gravity.
After Katrina, engineers determined that New Orleans is sinking 3-4 times faster than they originally thought. Ever hear of sinking sand?

The real act of stupidity is knowing this and still rebuilding. Hollywood is to blame, jokers like Harry Connick and Brad Pitt.
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Old 08-31-2011, 11:46 AM   #83
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I know that I will get grief for this, but New Orleans was a disaster waiting to happen. And since many went back, it will happen again. There is something fundamentally flawed about building houses — or anything for that matter — in what should have been a brackish lake lower than the land (and water) around it, and whose bottom was lower than the sea.

It is like jumping off the Empire State Building and cursing God for gravity.
I already did get grief. In 2004 I was introduced to a new coworker at my firm. He said he was from New Orleans and I responded "Well, that city will be gone when the next hurricane hits". That comment was understood to mean that I didn't like him or some other nonsense. As it turns out he boasted that his father was wealthy and owned a lot of real estate, all of which was in the 9th ward. Oh well, if he had been more interested in what I was saying rather than getting offended his father might still own a lot of real estate.
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Old 08-31-2011, 12:00 PM   #84
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The problem with your dismissal of the free will argument is that it was a result of the exercise of man's free will that God chose to take restraints off of the "natural" and even off of the already existing evil in the form of Satan and his followers.
You seem to be onto something there, but there’s a problem. If evil already existed, then it existed before man exercised his free will. Therefore, such evil is not the result of free will. So the free will argument does not explain it.

Quote:
Our problem in deciphering the issues surrounding God and evil is that we constantly presume that a particular characteristic of God is overriding in all ways, especially in the ways that we would want them to be overriding.

So God is righteous, but we demand that love override it in its entirety.

It isn’t that we presume, it’s that these characteristics are “omni” ;that is, absolute, total, ultimate characteristics. So the problem doesn’t begin with our presumption. The problem begins with the very definition of God. How can you have absolute power and absolute goodness without one “over-riding the other? That’s the problem that is embedded in Epicurus’ questions.

Quote:
Yet we want God to exercise his righteousness on those we see as willfully evil.

In other words, we want God to decide everything in the way we would.


Not necessarily. The problem is still there if we want God to decide it in anyway conceivable that preserves his absolute attributes.



Quote:
It's a little like the people who holler about having to submit to searches before getting on airplanes, but will blame the government if something happens on an airplane because a terrorist made it through security. We want God to exercise the judgment he has reserved for the end times. And we want it to be the way we would have it be.

An omniscient and omnipotent security guard wouldn’t have to search people, she would know what they are carrying and could dispose of the terrorist immediately. Your analogy seems to fall apart.

Quote:
I would suggest that if we are to love our neighbor as ourselves, we don't have a very healthy love for ourselves.


I don’t see how that is relevant or true.

Quote:
You may not have spoken on any particular one of these issues. But th idea is the same. We want God in our image. We don't want a God that is beyond our comprehension. We want to both comprehend him, and somehow prove that he thinks just like we do and therefore whatever we think is right is . . . well . . . right.


I think we want a God who is better than us. I agree God is beyond our comprehension because how can we comprehend that an omnipotent and perfectly good God permits evil? That brings us back to Epicurus’ questions.

Quote:
We don't want a God who decides to exercise restraint with respect to how nature behaves. How genetics, environment, and evil work to produce poverty, sickness, and more evil. Or how the greedy manage to keep getting more while we righteous ones keep getting less. Solomon said it best. Life is what it is. There is good and evil. There is grief and happiness. Serve your God in it all.


Right, well, the existence of evil seems to be incompatible with the claims made for God that he is both omnipotent and omni-benevolent. I don't see there is a rational solution to the problem. If there is none, then an irrational a leap of faith is necessary if we are to accept God as advertized.

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Old 08-31-2011, 12:17 PM   #85
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Don't you think this line of questioning belongs on another forum, such as an agnostics, atheists, or "we got a bad God" forum?

If the moderator of LocalChurchDiscussions.com is trying to be "fair," and wants to limit the discussion of politics and other unrelated topics, shouldn't the discussion of whether there is a God or not be included?
No. I'm an ex-local churcher. That's my qualification for being here. I think these question are appropriate to a the forum theme of "O Lord where do we go from here" and the thread title "Elvis has left the building. Don't you?

I remember I was having a theological discussion when I was at a training and a brother who seemed to have a position of authority got in my face and started shouting "O Lord Jesus" at me. He wanted me to shut up. Then I stopped talking and he kept shouting "O Lord Jesus" at me. He wanted me to start calling on the Lord with so I would STOP THINKING.

That's what you would like me to do isn't it Ohio? You want to censure me so that I will stop talking, or stop thinkin or just go away. One might conclude that you want me to leave because you don't want to think about such questions yourself.

Yet I will point out in my defence that I have been polite and civil and reasonable regardless whether you agree with me or not. I have not used obscenity or profanity or called names or made accusations. So really, there is no reasonable basis for censuring my posts.
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Old 08-31-2011, 12:25 PM   #86
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A truly omnipotent God could create two perspectives of time. In His perspective, yes, He snaps his fingers and it is done. In our perspective it is a a painfully slow process in which we move from glory to glory, and this temporary suffering that we go through works out for us an eternal weight of glory. In the end we are trained and impressed by every single misstep that we could take and how important it is and how wise it is to follow God's leading and guiding.

Then not only do we get a perfect world at the snap of God's fingers, but we also get a Body of people who are trained and perfected.
So, is the evil we experience from our perspective an illusion? Because if it isn't then the perfectly good God is allowing evil when he didn't have to because he could have prevented it with his omnipotence. There are horrendous evils in this world, and the slightest evil is a contradiction to an absolutely perfect God.

If what we think is evil is really good, then there is no evil. If that's true then why did Christ have to die to save us from our sins?
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:27 PM   #87
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The world we live in is not the best possible world, but it is the best way to the best possible world. In other words, the lessons learned in this world will eventually produce a world of a quality which could not exist otherwise.

I.e.
  1. Without free will love is meaningless, therefore free will is necessary for the best possible world.
  2. Free will by definition can be abused, producing something less than the best possible world.
  3. Through God's patient guidance, and by experiencing first hand the consequences of sin, free-willed creatures will learn to never again choose sin.
  4. The best possible world, where free will and sinlessness coexist, will be attained.
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:30 PM   #88
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No. I'm an ex-local churcher. That's my qualification for being here. I think these question are appropriate to a the forum theme of "O Lord where do we go from here" and the thread title "Elvis has left the building> Don't you.

I remember i was having a theological discussion when I was at a training and a brother got in my face and started shouting "O Lord Jesus" at me. He wanted me to shut up. Then I stopped talking and he kept shouting "O Lord Jesus" at me. He wanted me to start calling on the Lord with so I would STOP THINKING.

That's what you would like me to do isn't it Ohio? You want to censure me so that I will stop talking, or stop thinkin or just go away. One might conclude that you want me to leave because you don't want to think about such questions yourself.

Yet I will point out in my defense that I have been polite and civil and reasonable regardless whether you agree with me or not. I have not used obscentiy or profanity or called names or made accusations. So really, there is no reasonable basis for censuring my posts.
Dear Zeek, why would you needle and provoke a brother to that point? What were you saying that so infuriated him? This seems to say more about you than that poor brother in the LC. Perhaps he did not want you to "stop thinking," but to start believing in Jesus, start listening to and trusting the Lord, start reading and obeying His word, and stop your unbelief, stop your doubting, stop your railing.

I'm not censuring anybody. I'm an ex-LCer also and last month I had trouble with my Hot Water Heater, so I went to a HWH forum to discuss it. That was the right place. The same is the case here. You seem to have issues with God and His behavior, rather than the Recovery and its behavior. I feel that forums are the greatest thing about the internet, but you have to find the right forum for your questions.

Let me be the first to inform you that you will never get a satisfactory answer for your complaints about God. The Lord commands us to believe, and it's as simple as that. I didn't make the rules, He did. The Bible makes it clear that faith alone in Christ alone is necessary for our salvation.
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:44 PM   #89
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So, is the evil we experience from our perspective an illusion? Because if it isn't then the perfectly good God is allowing evil when he didn't have to because he could have prevented it with his omnipotence. There are horrendous evils in this world, and the slightest evil is a contradiction to an absolutely perfect God.

If what we think is evil is really good, then there is no evil. If that's true then why did Christ have to die to save us from our sins?
I have already shared about the two perspectives. From our perspective it has been 6,000 years since Adam. Once the Lord returns it is another 1,000 years for the millenial kingdom. All told it is over 7,000 years. I rounded up to 10,000 years to eliminate any trivial arguments over the total length of time. I then compared that to the age of the Universe.

I then compared the age of the Universe to the time spent building the Irving meeting hall. A time frame that from our perspective we can understand. 10,000 years is to the age of the universe as 37 seconds is to the time spent building the Irving meeting hall. That is assuming that the work proceeded 24 hours a day which is the most advantageous view.

My point is, what to you appears to be a long time is to God an instant in time. Those are the two perspectives. Neither is an illusion. Just like time lapse photography or super slow motion.

How do you come to the conclusion that the slightest evil is a contradiction to God. Is foolishness a contradiction to wisdom? Is rebellion a contradiction to authority? OBW pointed out that much of what you call evil is actually the result of man exercising his free will. If the only possible choice was the one God ordained, then you could argue that "free will" is an illusion, much like an election where there is only one candidate, or an election where you want to vote for the one that isn't a corporate shill, but both candidates are merely corporate puppets.

This is similar to saying that if God is a Chess Grandmaster, and He creates Chess, that there cannot be any idiot chess players because it is a contradiction of some sort?
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Old 08-31-2011, 01:50 PM   #90
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I believe that, ultimately, God's greatest accomplishment will be to achieve a world where free will truly exists, but no one sins. Ironically, all the bad things that happen now are working to make that possible.

Will that be worth it all? Apparently God thinks so, or he would have not for a second allowed it to happen.
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Old 08-31-2011, 04:42 PM   #91
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So, is the evil we experience from our perspective an illusion? Because if it isn't then the perfectly good God is allowing evil when he didn't have to because he could have prevented it with his omnipotence. There are horrendous evils in this world, and the slightest evil is a contradiction to an absolutely perfect God.

If what we think is evil is really good, then there is no evil. If that's true then why did Christ have to die to save us from our sins?
Zeek,

The premise Evil exists therefore God cannot exist has been bounced around for centuries. I firmly believe that logically it is no longer a valid argument. However emotionally I can see one holding onto that when they have suffered greatly and have not seen from their perspective intervention or have been alleviated from their suffering.

God has a morally sufficient reason to permit evil. The fact that evil exists and God exists is a logically coherent statement.

Your statement is that their is soo much evil in the world, how can God permit it. That is the objection you are struggling with now. I tried to offer reasons of explaining it and of course I didnt do a good job of it.

I recommend reading the following books.

C.S Lewis - Problem of Pain
William Lane Craig - Reasonable Faith

Or listening to this.
William Lane Craig - Problem of Evil
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EPqSrnR6VtI

I encourage you to use the internet, there is ALOT of information ant material you can get your hands on. This is your belief and salvation at stake here. If God does exist certainly you would want to be on the right side.

Just remember, when I made a statement that I could grow my hand into a knife in an alternate universe or in another universe the worst thing that can happen is a paper cut. What I was trying to establish is that Evil, Pain is relative. How do we know that God didnt already limit certain evils? We already know from the bible God locked away certain demons. So when you say the evilest evil, what does that mean???

From what I understand the problem of evil has been largely intellectually refuted. Emotional dislike or opinionated objections where God permits suffering is another entirely different argument.

What I want to offer is words of encouragement is that Christianity actually addresses evil and suffering. Many other belief systems do not.

Ex. Atheism. What we see is what exists. So the mentally and physically disabled child will never ever have a chance at a good life. Thats what you get and we have no answers. Suffering is just their so deal with it. Some are more lucky some are not. Your meager existence doesnt matter anyways. Their is no soul no spirit. Just a complex chemical reaction. Their is no love or beauty, just science. That is all.
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Old 08-31-2011, 06:44 PM   #92
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You seem to be onto something there, but there’s a problem. If evil already existed, then it existed before man exercised his free will. Therefore, such evil is not the result of free will. So the free will argument does not explain it.
I didn't say that free will caused the evil. I said that free will chose the evil. And the consequences were not put only upon the one who first chose. As with some of my other comments, the judgment is not mine to determine. And the fact that I don't like the judgment does not make God arbitrary. It makes me ignorant of the facts.

And the one choice affected us as a species, and as a cosmos. Again, I might rather it was done differently. But then I do not have all the facts. I/we can only presume to know anything about this.

A funny little aside. Someone read me a few of the opening lines of the Tao. If you replace "Tao" with "God" you get an interesting thought. In so many words, when we are concerned about God, he becomes a collection of things according to our thought. When we accept God, he is infinite and the source of everything. (Not a very good recitation, but you might get the idea. In other words, even the ancient Chinese sought God although they could only describe it/him as a "way.")

Enough on this.
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Old 08-31-2011, 06:45 PM   #93
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The premise Evil exists therefore God cannot exist has been bounced around for centuries. I firmly believe that logically it is no longer a valid argument. However emotionally I can see one holding onto that when they have suffered greatly and have not seen from their perspective intervention or have been alleviated from their suffering.

God has a morally sufficient reason to permit evil. The fact that evil exists and God exists is a logically coherent statement.
It is only our demand that God do right in our eyes that makes it incoherent.
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Old 09-01-2011, 08:06 AM   #94
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I gotta stop spelling their as there lol.
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Old 09-01-2011, 08:24 AM   #95
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So, is the evil we experience from our perspective an illusion? Because if it isn't then the perfectly good God is allowing evil when he didn't have to because he could have prevented it with his omnipotence. There are horrendous evils in this world, and the slightest evil is a contradiction to an absolutely perfect God.

If what we think is evil is really good, then there is no evil. If that's true then why did Christ have to die to save us from our sins?
I asked you a question in post #57 which you still haven't answered. The first floor of the Irving hall is concrete poured onto cardboard boxes. Those boxes have long since disintegrated. Why would you build a foundation on such a flimsy substance as a cardboard box? Yet that cardboard plays a key role in making the structure more sound. In the same way God may be using evil to make his finished product more sound.
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Old 09-01-2011, 08:37 AM   #96
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Dear Zeek, why would you needle and provoke a brother to that point? What were you saying that so infuriated him? This seems to say more about you than that poor brother in the LC. Perhaps he did not want you to "stop thinking," but to start believing in Jesus, start listening to and trusting the Lord, start reading and obeying His word, and stop your unbelief, stop your doubting, stop your railing.


That I needled or provoked him is your unwarranted assumption. He wasn't angry. If he wanted me to start believing in Jesus, etc. he could have said so, of course that assumes that I had stopped believing in Jesus which I had not.



Quote:
I'm not censuring anybody. I'm an ex-LCer also and last month I had trouble with my Hot Water Heater, so I went to a HWH forum to discuss it. That was the right place. The same is the case here. You seem to have issues with God and His behavior, rather than the Recovery and its behavior. I feel that forums are the greatest thing about the internet, but you have to find the right forum for your questions.
In the opening post aron stated "The only things I can see to slavishly imitate is to love God, love our neighbor, try to follow the Spirit. Forgive one another as God has forgiven us." Thus, he raised the issue of God which is the issue I am discussing. A fundamental issue pertaining to the so called Lord's Recovery, is whether it's teaching and practices are grounded in reality. In other words, are they true and do they work. Now, we can skate on the surface of the issue, or we can get to the heart of it. Asking the deep theological questions is an attempt to get to the heart of it.

We were discouraged from asking questions in the LC. Questions were of the devil who appears in the shape of a question mark. Do you still believe that? We were discouraged from thinking for ourselves. We were instructed to learn WL's teachings by rote and to chant them. That was supposed to magically work them into our being. The idea seemed to be to bypass rational, critical thought. Is that what you want me to do?

Quote:
Let me be the first to inform you that you will never get a satisfactory answer for your complaints about God. The Lord commands us to believe, and it's as simple as that. I didn't make the rules, He did. The Bible makes it clear that faith alone in Christ alone is necessary for our salvation.
Is that what they are--complaints? They are questions. I am perplexed how an all-powerful, all-good God could allow evil. Augustine gave an answer that goes some way toward justifying God. God gave us free will so that we could realize a greater good. Natural calamities could also be given to test us and call us to the realization of greater goods like courage and faith. How would courage ever be produced if there were no evils in the world? I can see that. But what of the innocent and the incapacitated who must suffer without comprehending? What greater good is accomplished by allowing a child to suffer pain who is too young to understand or summon faith?

So, you have faith for your salvation. You are taken care of. What about those that don’t and can’t? Does God have a provision for them?

I think it’s interesting the way you put it. “The Lord commands us to believe, and it's as simple as that.” So belief to you is a good work. Obedience to a commandment. We are not saved by grace but by the good work of believing. God doesn’t give grace, he commands us to give faith.


You didn’t make the rules. God is a God of rules or laws. The rules used to be thou shalt not this and thou shalt not that. But now the rule is just do this one thing, believe this one thing and thou shalt be saved.

How is it that a God who is immutable, always the same, changed his covenant from keep the whole OT law to keep this one law? Did he break his contract with the Jews? The work of faith in Christ is all we need to be saved. Is that your graceless Gospel, Ohio.

Why does God, the creator of a universe so vast that it exhausts our imagination, care so much about the belief we carry between our ears Ohio?
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Old 09-01-2011, 08:41 AM   #97
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It is only our demand that God do right in our eyes that makes it incoherent.
Incoherence is not the problem. It's rather that if according to human standards God is a tyrant we can't love Him with an innocent heart. Fear Him maybe, but not love Him.
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Old 09-01-2011, 08:47 AM   #98
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I asked you a question in post #57 which you still haven't answered. The first floor of the Irving hall is concrete poured onto cardboard boxes. Those boxes have long since disintegrated. Why would you build a foundation on such a flimsy substance as a cardboard box? Yet that cardboard plays a key role in making the structure more sound. In the same way God may be using evil to make his finished product more sound.
What if the first floor of Irving Hall were concrete poured onto the flesh of babies screaming in pain. Would that be a justifiable way for the builder to make the structure more sound?
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Old 09-01-2011, 09:18 AM   #99
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The premise Evil exists therefore God cannot exist has been bounced around for centuries. I firmly believe that logically it is no longer a valid argument. However emotionally I can see one holding onto that when they have suffered greatly and have not seen from their perspective intervention or have been alleviated from their suffering.

Show me how it is invalid then.


Quote:
God has a morally sufficient reason to permit evil. The fact that evil exists and God exists is a logically coherent statement.

Those are unsupported statements.


Quote:
I recommend reading the following books.

C.S Lewis - Problem of Pain
William Lane Craig - Reasonable Faith

Or listening to this.
William Lane Craig - Problem of Evil
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EPqSrnR6VtI

Thanks I might check them out.

Quote:
I encourage you to use the internet, there is ALOT of information ant material you can get your hands on. This is your belief and salvation at stake here. If God does exist certainly you would want to be on the right side.


If God’s salvation is by grace, I don’t need to worry about it do I ?

Quote:
Just remember, when I made a statement that I could grow my hand into a knife in an alternate universe or in another universe the worst thing that can happen is a paper cut. What I was trying to establish is that Evil, Pain is relative. How do we know that God didnt already limit certain evils? We already know from the bible God locked away certain demons. So when you say the evilest evil, what does that mean???
If God has another universe where there is no evil, how does that compensate for the evil in this universe? How can an all powerful holy, righteous God allow evil to exist anywhere? Isn’t evil incompatible with his being?

Quote:
From what I understand the problem of evil has been largely intellectually refuted. Emotional dislike or opinionated objections where God permits suffering is another entirely different argument.


Refuted by whom and for whom and how? It has not been refuted by anyone here as far as I can understand. All ethics, morality and compassion may be nothing more than emotionalism in which case should we stop objecting to rape, murder, and torture and just get jiggy with it?

Quote:
What I want to offer is words of encouragement is that Christianity actually addresses evil and suffering. Many other belief systems do not.


Thanks

Quote:
Ex. Atheism. What we see is what exists. So the mentally and physically disabled child will never ever have a chance at a good life. Thats what you get and we have no answers. Suffering is just their so deal with it. Some are more lucky some are not. Your meager existence doesnt matter anyways. Their is no soul no spirit. Just a complex chemical reaction. Their is no love or beauty, just science. That is all.

If the truth is that there are answers then it would be reasonable for us to believe them. If the truth is that there are no answers, then it would be reasonable to accept that.
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Old 09-01-2011, 09:26 AM   #100
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Quote:
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You seem to be onto something there, but there’s a problem. If evil already existed, then it existed before man exercised his free will. Therefore, such evil is not the result of free will. So the free will argument does not explain it.

I didn't say that free will caused the evil. I said that free will chose the evil. And the consequences were not put only upon the one who first chose. As with some of my other comments, the judgment is not mine to determine. And the fact that I don't like the judgment does not make God arbitrary. It makes me ignorant of the facts.

Right. We could be ignorant of the necessary facts. We could be ignorant of anything necessary to make any pronouncement whatsoever regarding ultimate reality


Quote:
And the one choice affected us as a species, and as a cosmos. Again, I might rather it was done differently. But then I do not have all the facts. I/we can only presume to know anything about this.
Yup.

Quote:
A funny little aside. Someone read me a few of the opening lines of the Tao. If you replace "Tao" with "God" you get an interesting thought. In so many words, when we are concerned about God, he becomes a collection of things according to our thought. When we accept God, he is infinite and the source of everything. (Not a very good recitation, but you might get the idea. In other words, even the ancient Chinese sought God although they could only describe it/him as a "way.")


I strongly agree, OBW.
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Old 09-01-2011, 09:30 AM   #101
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What if the first floor of Irving Hall were concrete poured onto the flesh of babies screaming in pain. Would that be a justifiable way for the builder to make the structure more sound?
This is how you answer ZNP's question?

No wonder you can't get answers from others, both God and man.
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Old 09-01-2011, 09:31 AM   #102
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Show me how it is invalid then.
I already have. For free will to be possible, evil must be possible. For God to completely restrict evil would be for him to restrict meaningful free will.

God plainly feels that the dangers of evil are an acceptable risk for having free will.
  1. Man is sufficiently intelligent to recognize evil.
  2. God is sufficiently powerful to aid man in avoiding evil.
  3. God is intelligent and wise enough to judge each person.
  4. In the end, God will wipe away every tear from the eyes of his people. Which means no lingering suffering from experiencing evil will remain.
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Old 09-01-2011, 09:43 AM   #103
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Zeek,

We have given you supporting evidences through logic as to why God can permit evil and still be the three Omni.

You just dont like those logical reasons. Therefore would you admit that your struggle is atleast emotional and not based on logic?

God can permit evil. "No". We provide an answer and you say no I cant accept that answer. If you re-read your comments it has a general tone of no its too evil. Hes perfect he didnt make perfect so its logically incoherent. But we gave you a logically sound reason as to why his perfect creation became imperfect.

We are not longer in the logic now since we are trying to convince you that God could be perfect and have an imperfect creation. Its plausible at the very least not impossible. And once its possible then the premise is no longer.

The statement "God exists evil cannot exist" should be at the VERY least modified to, "Evil exists so its improbable that God exists." not impossible.

Do you agree Zeek?

If we can agree to that statement I think we can move forward.

You said it yourself under my atheist comments. We are in the search for a world view that is true and not necessarily convenient.
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Old 09-01-2011, 10:22 AM   #104
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Zeek,

We have given you supporting evidences through logic as to why God can permit evil and still be the three Omni.

You just dont like those logical reasons. Therefore would you admit that your struggle is atleast emotional and not based on logic?

God can permit evil. "No". We provide an answer and you say no I cant accept that answer. If you re-read your comments it has a general tone of no its too evil. Hes perfect he didnt make perfect so its logically incoherent. But we gave you a logically sound reason as to why his perfect creation became imperfect.

We are not longer in the logic now since we are trying to convince you that God could be perfect and have an imperfect creation. Its plausible at the very least not impossible. And once its possible then the premise is no longer.

The statement "God exists evil cannot exist" should be at the VERY least modified to, "Evil exists so its improbable that God exists." not impossible.

Do you agree Zeek?

If we can agree to that statement I think we can move forward.

You said it yourself under my atheist comments. We are in the search for a world view that is true and not necessarily convenient.
This logic is so cross-wired it heats up my cognitive machinery....

Making premises to support premises does not make logic.

Zeek's point is that a perfect God would not be able to produce something imperfect...

If so it's the fault of the manufacturer....and there should have been a recall.
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Old 09-01-2011, 10:48 AM   #105
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This is how you answer ZNP's question?
No wonder you can't get answers from others, both God and man.
ZNP was using cardboard boxes as a metaphor for the suffering of senscient beings, so I entered senscient beings in place of the cardboard boxes. That's what we're talking about here, Ohio--the suffering of flesh and blood human beings. And it's not just me that isn't getting answers. You don't have any answers either which is probably why you are so uncomfortable talking about it.
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:07 AM   #106
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I already have. For free will to be possible, evil must be possible. For God to completely restrict evil would be for him to restrict meaningful free will.

God plainly feels that the dangers of evil are an acceptable risk for having free will.
OK so just God considers it acceptable for an innocent child to suffer.
  1. Quote:
    Man is sufficiently intelligent to recognize evil.
Some are, some aren't. All suffer regardless.
Quote:
2. God is sufficiently powerful to aid man in avoiding evil.
God is sufficiently powerful to prevent evil entirely but chooses not to.

Quote:
3. God is intelligent and wise enough to judge each person.
OK

Quote:
4. In the end, God will wipe away every tear from the eyes of his people. Which means no lingering suffering from experiencing evil will remain.
Right. It's a beautiful image. This is the answer of faith without evidence. It is necessitated by the reality of suffering in the observable world. How long has God endured the suffering of senscient beings? How much longer until the wiping away of tears envisioned by John of Patmos?
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:07 AM   #107
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ZNP was using cardboard boxes as a metaphor for the suffering of senscient beings, so I entered senscient beings in place of the cardboard boxes. That's what we're talking about here, Ohio--the suffering of flesh and blood human beings. And it's not just me that isn't getting answers. You don't have any answers either which is probably why you are so uncomfortable talking about it.
I have answers. It's you that has no answers.

I am more than comfortable talking about these difficult questions, that is, until someone proves I am wasting my time.
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:10 AM   #108
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[QUOTE=zeek;14186]
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OK so just God considers it acceptable for an innocent child to suffer.
  1. So are, some aren't. All suffer.
God is suffiiently powerful to prevent evil entirely but chooses not to.
OK
Right. It's a beautiful image. This is the answer of faith without evidence. It is necessitated by the reality of suffering in the observable world. How long has God endured the suffering of senscient beings? How much longer until the wiping away of tears envisioned by John of Patmos?
So every parent is evil or a bad parent. No parent should allow their children to learn themselves. Protect them from everything right?
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:12 AM   #109
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Infact, if I the "perfect parent" has allowed my son/daughter to experience an ounce of pain due to their own choices I am no longer a perfect parent.

I could not imagine what kind of monstrosity of a kid would grow to be if it never experience any pain. Probably have some kind of invincibility complex with the "perfect" parent being at their side every living second.

That totally makes sense

Infact even better. If I let my son or daughter experience pain, then I dont love them.
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:15 AM   #110
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If so it's the fault of the manufacturer....and there should have been a recall.
When the roll is recalled up yonder we'll be there!
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:16 AM   #111
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I have answers. It's you that has no answers.

I am more than comfortable talking about these difficult questions, that is, until someone proves I am wasting my time.
OK what are the answers?
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:23 AM   #112
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[quote=Leomon;14188]
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So every parent is evil or a bad parent. No parent should allow their children to learn themselves. Protect them from everything right?
Well see there is already evil in the world. No parent can protect a child from all evil. To prevent a child from realizing his or her potential for self sufficiency would be an evil in itself. So no that's wrong. You protect them from evil when they are too young to avoid it and you teach them n to avoid evil and do good as they grow and mature. That's the best you can do.

The analogy breaks down because we are not omnipotent.
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:32 AM   #113
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OK so just God considers it acceptable for an innocent child to suffer.
Temporal suffering cannot compare to eternal bliss.

What you are saying is like saying that no one should be allowed to drive cars because someone might get hurt. Or kids shouldn't be allowed to play with marbles because someone might catch one in the eye. Or people shouldn't be allowed to get out of bed because they might fall down.

What kind of world do you want? One where everyone walks around in padded suits and eats predigested mush with rubber spoons so that they don't accidentally bite their lips? There is a way to totally eliminate suffering immediately, but you wouldn't like the result because you'd find that you'd become a robot.

A world without potential for mistakes is a world without potential for lessons. Without having the choice to reject God we cannot experience the joy of choosing him.

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Some are, some aren't. All suffer regardless.
None need suffer eternally.

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Right. It's a beautiful image. This is the answer of faith without evidence. It is necessitated by the reality of suffering in the observable world. How long has God endured the suffering of senscient beings? How much longer until the wiping away of tears envisioned by John of Patmos?
Why don't you ask him? Peter said that God is giving people time to repent. The LRC believed he was waiting for the church to be built. The bottom line is he is waiting for us, we're not waiting for him.
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Old 09-01-2011, 11:54 AM   #114
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I recently watched an old Twilight Zone episode. It was about this small time hoodlum who died and went to the afterlife. He found himself in a place where all his tastes were satisfied. He had plenty of food and alcohol, beautiful women, banks to rob, and his own casino to gamble in all day long. Attending to his every whim was his own personal valet (played marvelously by Sebastian Cabot).

At first he was thrilled. But as time went on he became frustrated. What was the point of gambling if he couldn't lose? Or of robbing banks if he couldn't get caught? What was the point of being with a beautiful woman when it was obvious she was programmed to say and do whatever he wanted? In short, what was the point of success if there was no potential for failure?

All along he had wondered how he rated getting into heaven. Now he told the valet, "I don't belong in heaven. I want to go to the other place!" To which the valet replied, "Heaven?! What ever gave you the idea you were in heaven? This is the other place!"

Bwahahahahaha!

Without the possibility of making a bad choices, there is really no choice at all. Choosing is what gives life meaning.
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:13 PM   #115
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Well see there is already evil in the world. No parent can protect a child from all evil. To prevent a child from realizing his or her potential for self sufficiency would be an evil in itself. So no that's wrong. You protect them from evil when they are too young to avoid it and you teach them n to avoid evil and do good as they grow and mature. That's the best you can do.

The analogy breaks down because we are not omnipotent.
Being the three omni's doesnt have anything to do about it.

Say there is a perfect parent, who is ominpotent
Creates a child.

The parent decided to give this child choice. So that it would be sentient, a moral being, a person who could think and have their own free will. A child in his image. Beautiful.

Now the child is growing up nicely, and the child is obedient and is following and learning many of the things the parent teaches.

One day due to their own free will it decides to defy the parent. It being a child it did not know of the consequences. Now this Child has fallen short.

Couple of questions.

Could this have been prevented.
Well if an omniscient god knows everything it should be able to prevent the child from dis-obedience.

True. But by doing that, is God really giving us free will or the illusion of free will. If God wants us to love him and follow him, but then he changes history repeatedly to ensure we do. Is that really love, did we really choose him?

Why doesnt he just create a bunch of machines?

By all means he could but he chooses not too.

I think coupled by the free will argument, subjective evil & suffering and the morally sufficient reason, I think this is a very good logical evidence for the statement God exists evil exists.

However all this time Zeek, you have only stated the following.

God is all three omni's so because evil exists this is contradictory.

You have not shown us why other than your own subjective objections along the lines of.

Its too evil.

Like we talked about before and especially from Awareness side where he lost a son. Words escape me as to why this happened. Logic cannot provide you with emotional answers or encouragement. Logic cannot give you a hand when your down or give you joy and peace. This is where God comes in if we let him. Dont get hung up on the evils of this world. The bible is full of atrocities and evil and Christianity isnt a stranger to pain and suffering. Christianity welcomes pain and suffering with open arms. Talk to those Christians who have lost and suffered alot but remained strong believers. The answers of logic will not satisfy you I guarantee it. Whats funny is that Jesus came for sinners, and Christianity is MORE well received by those who DO suffer.

The last thing a widow or a rape victim would want to hear is that god has a morally sufficient reason for permitting evil. They would want to know that God loves them and has an answer and a resolution to their suffering. All wrongs will be right and you will be made anew. A new Heaven and Earth free full of Gods life. Eternal Joy and Peace, that is what we have to hope for. Once we see this and once we truly understand the message of the gospels we will be able to look at evil with a new pair of eyes.

And only then will these logical arguments further reinforce our knowledge of God. Why? Because its consistent and everything ties in together.

We could go along all day, but by faith alone we are saved. If those who have intellectual or historical objections those can be provided as well. Christianity isnt some magical genius of a fairy tale. The earliest known manuscripts go back to 1000 BC. Preserved works and manuscripts far outnumber any other historical work available. And whats amazing is the lack of inconsistencies.

We could go into topics of historical accuracy, manuscript analysis, analysis of Jesus, geographical timeline issues, carbon dating, creation vs evolution, monotheism vs polytheism, Judaism vs Christianity, dinosaurs, the list goes on.

But I tell you now even if all of them were answered there would be many that would be defiant. What we have to realize is that nothing in this world is 100% nothing will add up 100%. Take a leap of faith, if you have logical emotional doubts let it be. Come to Christianity and experience it. And I pray that you will find all your answers when you couple it with your obedience, faith and love.
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:23 PM   #116
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I asked you a question in post #57 which you still haven't answered. The first floor of the Irving hall is concrete poured onto cardboard boxes. Those boxes have long since disintegrated. Why would you build a foundation on such a flimsy substance as a cardboard box? Yet that cardboard plays a key role in making the structure more sound. In the same way God may be using evil to make his finished product more sound.
I understand what you are trying to do with this example, but I feel that it is misapplied. I just can't see the comparison between the ability to do something that the natural mind doesn't understand (unless it has sufficient training in physics), and evil. The fact that the outcome might be good and desirable does not make the two parallel enough to be meaningful.

Have you seen a water bed set up on top of a series of paper cups? Surely if you exert some lateral pressure the cups will collapse. But with only vertical pressure of gravity and the weight of the water above, the cups are very capable of holding the bed in place, and even someone getting on it and sleeping. It is more the ignorance of the average person as to the strength of a slightly conical paper cup and the math that reduces the weight of water held by any one cup to quite a small amount that makes it work.

The structure of those cardboard boxes was much the same. I recall walking on them. Besides the ever-so light notice of lateral movement, the could hold a lot. For the smallest structural portion of those boxes, my weight was probably as much as the cement they would hold. I could probably stand briefly on the heel of one foot and exert much more pressure than they would receive from the cement, but with no evidence of failure of the boxes. But get the entire structure soaking wet and they would fail. Even the pouring of the cement did not involve enough moisture to damage the top surface. And once the cement dries, it is held up by a series of deep cement piers, and connected to those piers by a web of steel encased within the cement. The cardboard was irrelevant within no more than a few hours. And it probably took the effects of some significant rain over a significant amount of time to get under the foundation and start the rotting process.

How do we make a comparison of this to evil? I sure don't see it as giving a reason for there to be evil.

Yes God uses everything for our benefit. (We may fight him on it, but he is working anyway.) I just don't see it as an argument for the coexistence of God and evil. Oh, they coexist. And well. But the fact that God can use evil is not an argument for or against its existence, or for or against the existence of God. It simply doesn't make a statement. It leaves any possibility as plausible — both sides.
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:26 PM   #117
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Dear Zeek, why would you needle and provoke a brother to that point? What were you saying that so infuriated him? This seems to say more about you than that poor brother in the LC. Perhaps he did not want you to "stop thinking," but to start believing in Jesus, start listening to and trusting the Lord, start reading and obeying His word, and stop your unbelief, stop your doubting, stop your railing.
Wow! Where do you get off, Ohio, sticking this crap on other posters?
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:35 PM   #118
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Nice to see ZNP coming to the defense of zeek's "right to freedom of speech"!
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:41 PM   #119
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In my opinion the equation is simple. God could have created a universe worth creating or not. In order to create one worth creating he had to include free will. Free will includes the potential for suffering. People who argue against God allowing suffering are really arguing against God creating at all.

The LRC had a warped view of how suffering benefits us. They would say it "bakes" us, or "works God into us." But what it really does is teach us to depend on God. That is a lesson worth learning. And if the only way to learn that lesson is to suffer, then suffering is worthwhile. Because the only other alternative is to not have been created at all.
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Old 09-01-2011, 12:42 PM   #120
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To be honest, the discussion of the existence of God in the presence of evil is a difficult discussion. I attended a 10 week course at a seminary on the subject and while I would say that it did the topic well, the arguments made by the various philosophers and others over the centuries against God are not well crafted. But they are seen by many people as well crafted. So one of this biggest problems is the demand by people that a god — any god worth the designation — should and must do everything that he can do that is consistent with any particular assertion about him(her). (Since I said "god" and not "God" I have that liberty. And at the same time, I note that our God which we give a male understanding, has many very feminine characteristics. It might be more correct to say that God is without gender as we know it.)

So if God says he is "not willing that any should perish," it is demanded that this be interpreted as a statement about what he desires and intends, and since he is described as all-powerful and all-knowing, he could simply make it so. Yet that would go against a declaration made about him long before that one. One in which he said that disobedience to the one command resulted in death.

We want to love our children. And we want to love all of mankind. But sometimes there are reasons for punishment. And in the ultimate context, outside of our purview, there may be a righteous requirement for the ultimate punishment. That does not mean that God cannot simultaneously desire that things not be that way even while allowing it to remain so.

But in the final analysis, if there is a god — and it is the God that we follow — we can yell at him all we want and despise him for the way things are. And the consequences are on our heads, not on his.

And it is this need to argue away God that makes it seem all the more clear that he does exist. If he really doesn't exist, then why bother arguing about it. Why even bother arguing against those who believe anyway. Nothing will change for it. We will all simply die and it will be over.

But inside we have knowledge of something different. We may not like it. But we sense it. And we want to yell in its face and say it isn't there. But it doesn't work. When we go to bed at night, we know better. So we have to keep arguing — looking for the argument that will convince even our own belief that there is nothing to believe in.
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Old 09-01-2011, 01:07 PM   #121
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I would agree.

That fact there is love ,beauty, mercy, empathy, conscience, hate, anger supports an idea of God.

We behave like there is order, that human beings do matter, were more than just a mash up oxygen, carbon, hydrogen and water. We pretend that there are human rights, that suffering and pain matter, that you have feelings and we have a moral duty to so and so.

But where does this come from? In the belief and pursuit of science? Hardly. Because society functions better when we cooperate?

None of this has come from atheism from my understanding. If God didnt exist I wonder why everyone isn't trying to grab as much as they get. I mean after all to them we only got this life and nothing else.
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Old 09-01-2011, 01:15 PM   #122
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I understand what you are trying to do with this example, but I feel that it is misapplied...
The question comes from the book of Job. In this book there are many complaints about the way God has behaved, his response is that He is building a man and then asks those that contend with him simple questions about building the Earth. They are clueless about building something so simple as the Earth yet feel they are qualified to critique God's building a man. God's point is "who is this that darkens counsel without knowledge". I have asked a simple question of Zeek which proves he is clueless about how to build a simple building. The purpose was simply to demonstrate that he is darkening counsel without knowledge.

The question is simple, and the point is simple: if you don't know the simplest thing about building a building, who are you to tell God how to make the universe?
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Old 09-01-2011, 01:32 PM   #123
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In this book there are many complaints about the way God has behaved, his response is that He is building a man
Okay I'll bite. Educated me, where does God respond that he's building a man?
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Old 09-01-2011, 01:46 PM   #124
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I have asked a simple question of Zeek which proves he is clueless about how to build a simple building.
Maybe, but I know when I'm beating my head against a brick wall.
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Old 09-01-2011, 02:23 PM   #125
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And it is this need to argue away God that makes it seem all the more clear that he does exist. If he really doesn't exist, then why bother arguing about it. Why even bother arguing against those who believe anyway. Nothing will change for it. We will all simply die and it will be over.

But inside we have knowledge of something different. We may not like it. But we sense it. And we want to yell in its face and say it isn't there. But it doesn't work. When we go to bed at night, we know better. So we have to keep arguing — looking for the argument that will convince even our own belief that there is nothing to believe in.
I am not trying to argue away God. Why would I want to do that? Eternal void is unattractive to me. I deny that I am a reprobate infidel who "says in his heart there is no God" or wishes to "say it isn't there" to quote you. I deny that I am "looking for the argument that will convince even our own belief that there is nothing to believe in." It might be comforting to you to suppose that these questions arise only from a God hater. That is not my case.

Yes, inside there is something different. Call it God, conscience, moral compass or a sense of a moral absolute. The problem is, not only do I not measure up to standard of the inner God, but even less does the world that the outer God has created. Why did a moral God create such a world? Perhaps the only answer is the answer of faith. In the words of the old hymn, "We will understand it better by and by", which implies that in the here and now there is no answer at all.
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Old 09-01-2011, 02:50 PM   #126
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Okay I'll bite. Educated me, where does God respond that he's building a man?
In Job 38:1 it says "Then the Lord answered Job out of the whirlwind". Before we look at the answer we first have to know what the question was. Although Job asks a lot of questions, it appears that his question that is directed to God is in 3 parts:

1. What is the point to life?

Job 3:11 Job asks why he didn’t die in the womb. And then in Job 7:17 Job asks what is man that thou shouldst magnify him?

He has lost everything that he has worked for, all of his kids have died, the question is simple, what is the point of life? Was there a point to having gone through this whole life? It seems like one big sick joke.

2. Who is the one that can judge the wicked and where is he?

Job 9:24 Job asks “The Earth is given into the hands of the wicked; he covereth the faces of the judges thereof, if not, where, and who is he?

The question is simple, who is the one that can judge the wicked and where is he?

Job 10: 4 “hast thou eyes of flesh, or seest thou as a man seest?”

He feels that he is being judged by an unfair standard. Therefore he feels that to judge the wicked you must have eyes of flesh.

3. What is my sin?

Job 13:24 Wherefore hidest thou thy face and holdest me for thine enemy?

He is asking God to explain to him what his sin is and is complaining that God is not responding. By ignoring Job God is treating him like an enemy.

Job 21:7 Wherefore do the wicked live, grow old, yea and are mighty in power?

The book begins with God praising Job for being upright and righteous. So why is it that the wicked are able to grow old and be mighty in power? How does a righteous God create such a mixed up world? Job goes into great detail on this question. This is the heart of this book, is Job being judged for sin? If not, why has God brought all this evil upon him?

Now according to Job 38:1 these are the questions that the Lord answers.
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Old 09-01-2011, 02:55 PM   #127
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Weak so far. But I'll give you the benefit of the doubt. Please go on ...
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Old 09-01-2011, 03:12 PM   #128
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1. Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge?

Clearly, to have a productive discussion requires some basic knowledge. You need to know certain things.

2. Where were you when I laid the foundation of the Earth?

The Lord asks Job a number of questions about the details of how the Foundation of the Earth was laid. According to the context, this is the Lord’s answer to Job’s question. So for part 1, what is the point to life, the Lord could respond that this was the laying of the foundation for Job’s life. If you read the rest of the story that would be consistent. For part 2 you could say that God is building a man that can judge the wicked, and what he has been doing is to lay the foundation for this man. For part 3 you could say that the Lord is laying a foundation, not punishing Job for sins. This also is consistent with the beginning of the story. Clearly, the evil that came upon Job was not a response to sin.

3. Job 40:1 “moreover the Lord answered Job and said, shall he that contends with the Almighty instruct Him?”

God is saying ‘Ok, you instruct me, you don’t like what I am doing, even though I have created the entire universe and done many marvelous works that you are completely clueless about, fine, instruct me, how do I build a man?’ To say that these questions are an answer to Job require that you use the context of the preceding 37 chapters.

4. Job 40:9 “Hast thou an arm like God? Or canst thou thunder with a voice like Him?”

Again, this is the Lord answering Job’s question. 1. What is the point of human life? Well, it is to express God, we were made in the image and likeness of God. Therefore we should have an arm like God and a voice like God. 2. Who and where is the man that will judge the wicked? He is a man that is made in the image and likeness of God. This is the point of the book of Job. God is making Job into His image and likeness. All of the complaints were about the process, God says ‘look you don’t even know how to make the Earth, why are you complaining about how I make a man in my image?’ 3. What is my sin? Your sin is that you have fallen short of the glory of God. You think that it is good enough to be righteous, but what God wants is a man that expresses him. God wants a man that has an arm like His and a voice like His.
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Old 09-01-2011, 03:31 PM   #129
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Still weak. Tell us about the man god is makin. Quote those verses. And where is the verse in Job that says the purpose of man is to express God?

Please go on...
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Old 09-01-2011, 03:56 PM   #130
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The question comes from the book of Job. In this book there are many complaints about the way God has behaved, his response is that He is building a man and then asks those that contend with him simple questions about building the Earth. They are clueless about building something so simple as the Earth yet feel they are qualified to critique God's building a man. God's point is "who is this that darkens counsel without knowledge". I have asked a simple question of Zeek which proves he is clueless about how to build a simple building. The purpose was simply to demonstrate that he is darkening counsel without knowledge.

The question is simple, and the point is simple: if you don't know the simplest thing about building a building, who are you to tell God how to make the universe?
I can agree with that. My comment was more to whether discussing cardboard boxes as temporary building material is meaningful to the discussion of the existence of evil and God at the same time.

Of course, I will admit that sometimes the argument that we think is the most ridiculous actually convinces someone.
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Old 09-01-2011, 04:13 PM   #131
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The question comes from the book of Job. In this book there are many complaints about the way God has behaved, his response is that He is building a man and then asks those that contend with him simple questions about building the Earth. They are clueless about building something so simple as the Earth yet feel they are qualified to critique God's building a man. God's point is "who is this that darkens counsel without knowledge". I have asked a simple question of Zeek which proves he is clueless about how to build a simple building. The purpose was simply to demonstrate that he is darkening counsel without knowledge.

The question is simple, and the point is simple: if you don't know the simplest thing about building a building, who are you to tell God how to make the universe?
And now, an alternate take on this post.

I'm not sure that God is making a statement about "building a man." He is making a statement about the fact that he made it. Period. All of it. The way he wanted. Not the way we wanted or would hope.

I posted this little bit that someone read from what I believe was the beginning of the Tao. While that is just a man's view of things, it still is a little profound.

To restate (heavily) in terms of this discussion:
Quote:
When we focus on the minutia, God is a collection of features and is seen in terms of our realm. But when we focus just on God, we see beyond our sphere to where he created it all. Where we accept that we are merely clay that a potter is playing with — masterfully, but still play relative to anything that we mortals can comprehend.
The Chinese mystics may have simply had a "go with the flow" kind of approach to things. But there is spiritual sanity in accepting God, and the circumstances of the day, as what they are. I believe in the examined life. But too much examination and you don't go forward. And I believe in having goals and knowing where you are going. But too much of it and you are constantly spending now worrying about tomorrow. And if we are caught up in both, we spend all out time reconsidering the past or fretting about tomorrow until we find that we lived a life in which we were never "alive in the moment." We have no todays to look back on tomorrow and no base from which to move to tomorrow.

Yeah, there's got to be some flaw in that kind of nearly circular insanity. But while true logic cannot be circular, the mind of man can go circular because it does not comprehend.
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Old 09-01-2011, 04:24 PM   #132
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And where is the verse in Job that says the purpose of man is to express God?
Outside of the general statement that we are made in the image of God, and then the NT references to the church as the body of Christ, I do not believe that there are verses anywhere that simply say the purpose of man is to express God.

I'm not even sure that there is any verse (or verses) that says anything like "the chief end of man is to enjoy God." (I'm sure I miss quoted it. But even if you quote it right, I don't find it.)

I don't think it is a bad thing to say that it is important to enjoy God. And not finding any verses that support such an oft-quoted portion of a major catechism is not grounds for distrusting all things Christian. Or suggesting that God and evil are incompatible.

I can assure you that I have read through most of the arguments claiming that they are not compatible and all I can say is that some brilliant people checked their minds at the door before they came up with them. I'm constantly blown over by the amount of air rushing through their supposedly solid arguments.
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Old 09-01-2011, 04:34 PM   #133
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I will address your comments surrounding Job by speaking to this specific point.
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4. Job 40:9 “Hast thou an arm like God? Or canst thou thunder with a voice like Him?”

Again, this is the Lord answering Job’s question. 1. What is the point of human life? Well, it is to express God, we were made in the image and likeness of God. Therefore we should have an arm like God and a voice like God.
We should have and arm and a voice like God? I hope you are saying that with a "yeah, right" sarcasm because otherwise you are suggesting that God said this because he intends that we should actually have such an arm or such a voice.

If that is what you are saying, then I must strongly disagree. God is making it clear that we are ignorant of the creation. That we are powerless. That we have no sound of authority. God did it his way. He did not take counsel from even one of us. (This despite Bill Cosby's Noah suggesting that God just send rain for 40 days and nights until the sewers back up rather than the ridiculously large number God originally said. "Right!!")

How anything transpires on the earth is not ours to make demands concerning. We did not create it. We did not ordain the laws under which things work. We didn't even get to make suggestions. God is not suggesting that we are in the process of getting there. We cannot demand that it all change because we have no say in it either way. On what basis can you read this any other way?
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Old 09-01-2011, 05:45 PM   #134
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Great posts Obi-won (OBW). Thanks. But I was hoping to hear more from brother Z. He's the one with the god building a man exegesis of Job. He's a smart brother, he must have his reasons, sound or not.

And BTW, I think I've mentioned this before but, when Logos is translated into Chinese, it becomes "Tao."

Having read the Tao De Ching prolly 20 times I'd have to agree. I think Lao-Tzu stumbled upon the Logos (it's a real force) didn't know what to call it, so labeled it The Tao.
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Old 09-02-2011, 12:55 AM   #135
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Still weak. Tell us about the man god is makin. Quote those verses. And where is the verse in Job that says the purpose of man is to express God?

Please go on...
The man that God is makin is in the NT, Ephesians refers to him as "The New Man", 1Cor refers to him as "The New Creation". Jesus is a man that meets this standard, He is the image of the invisible God, we are being made into his image. This is revealed in the NT, Job is the introduction to this revelation. Anyone who cannot see the direct parallel in the account of Job to Jesus is willfully closing their eyes.

Of course I suppose it is comforting that someone who would say the following disagrees with my understanding.

Post #64
Awareness: "rotflmao ... And you are right. I stand corrected. The book of Job is a comedic/tragedy.

I could elaborate ... if you like. But you and others prolly won't like it.

After my son died I was drawn to read the book of Job. So I read it over and over again, until it hit me, and I busted out laughing. The book has never been the same since to me. It really makes God, and the devil, buffoons."
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Old 09-02-2011, 01:01 AM   #136
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I will address your comments surrounding Job by speaking to this specific point.
We should have and arm and a voice like God? I hope you are saying that with a "yeah, right" sarcasm because otherwise you are suggesting that God said this because he intends that we should actually have such an arm or such a voice.
Yes, that is precisely what I am saying. Jesus is such a man. The church as the One New Man mentioned in Ephesians will also be such a man. Jesus is Lord. Therefore God has made Him the judge of the wicked. Jesus has eyes of flesh. Likewise, the Church as the One New Man will also be given authority and thrones. From the book of Genesis to the book of Revelation, God building this new man has been a major theme.

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If that is what you are saying, then I must strongly disagree. God is making it clear that we are ignorant of the creation. That we are powerless. That we have no sound of authority. God did it his way. He did not take counsel from even one of us. (This despite Bill Cosby's Noah suggesting that God just send rain for 40 days and nights until the sewers back up rather than the ridiculously large number God originally said. "Right!!")

How anything transpires on the earth is not ours to make demands concerning. We did not create it. We did not ordain the laws under which things work. We didn't even get to make suggestions. God is not suggesting that we are in the process of getting there. We cannot demand that it all change because we have no say in it either way. On what basis can you read this any other way?
On what basis? Are you serious? If you truly are asking for the Basis on how I could say that God created man in His image and after His likeness, and on what Basis that I am saying that Jesus is the image of the invisible God, or that the church is the New Creation, or that Jesus is the Last Adam, or that the Church is the One New Man, or that Jesus is Lord. Then I suggest you start a new thread.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:05 AM   #137
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The man that God is makin is in the NT, Ephesians refers to him as "The New Man", 1Cor refers to him as "The New Creation". Jesus is a man that meets this standard
Please show in the NT where the book of Job is referenced as regards the New Man.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:08 AM   #138
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Yes, that is precisely what I am saying. Jesus is such a man. The church as the One New Man mentioned in Ephesians will also be such a man. Jesus is Lord. Therefore God has made Him the judge of the wicked. Jesus has eyes of flesh. Likewise, the Church as the One New Man will also be given authority and thrones. From the book of Genesis to the book of Revelation, God building this new man has been a major theme.



On what basis? Are you serious? If you truly are asking for the Basis on how I could say that God created man in His image and after His likeness, and on what Basis that I am saying that Jesus is the image of the invisible God, or that the church is the New Creation, or that Jesus is the Last Adam, or that the Church is the One New Man, or that Jesus is Lord. Then I suggest you start a new thread.
So you've gotten out of Lee's movement, but haven't got Lee's movement out of you?
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:11 AM   #139
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Yes, that is precisely what I am saying. Jesus is such a man. The church as the One New Man mentioned in Ephesians will also be such a man. Jesus is Lord. Therefore God has made Him the judge of the wicked. Jesus has eyes of flesh. Likewise, the Church as the One New Man will also be given authority and thrones. From the book of Genesis to the book of Revelation, God building this new man has been a major theme.
And there has been no effort to establish how this response to the four (five?) who were sitting around bemoaning Job's condition and suggesting that they knew what God was doing with it all has to do with the "one new man." The challenges are, on their face, not about Jesus or the one new man. They are putting these men, including Job, in their place as mortals who are clearly not the ones who have such an arm of strength or voice of power.
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On what basis? Are you serious? If you truly are asking for the Basis on how I could say that God created man in His image and after His likeness, and on what Basis that I am saying that Jesus is the image of the invisible God, or that the church is the New Creation, or that Jesus is the Last Adam, or that the Church is the One New Man, or that Jesus is Lord. Then I suggest you start a new thread.
I absolutely did not ask how you can say that man is created in the image of God. I said nothing about Jesus being or not being the image of the invisible God.

And if there is anything in what I said that suggested this, I would like to hear it. Otherwise, you have created a strawman. Job is not about Jesus. It is not about man being made in the image of God. But that fact does not suggest that those are not true statements. It simply is not talking about them.

And this is what I find continually lacking in these kinds of arguments. The mere fact that you can discuss the attributes of Jesus in these terms does not make this book about it. And the fact that the ultimate "power" of the church may compare, at least in a sort of parallel, does not cause this book to be talking about that.

I can buy a comparison of the mighty God with mortal man, then return to comment on the fact that another man, Jesus, will actually be both that mighty God and man. Or that in a sense the church will grow toward having the strength of God. But even this last one is not true in the sense in which this challenge to Job and his friends is laid down. Show me, in terms that man will see, that the church wields the kind of power that God speaks of here.

And, like the disagreement concerning scriptural statements (not existing) about Jesse teaching David any particular thing, this book does not actually say any of what you are saying. And simply saying it is there and going on like I'm some kind of fool to not see it makes your argument so entirely foolish. I know you wont like this, but this kind of argument is very Lee-esque. Find a theme that can be brought to the current passage through a common word and then insist that things not said in the current passages are simply true about them anyway.

You see, Sarah and Hagar, even when the account is recorded in Genesis, comment on the promise that God made to Abraham. From the beginning it was true that "man leaves his mother . . . and the two become one flesh." Yet Abraham first tired to simply substitute a servant for the never-expected-to-be son from his own flesh — the joined flesh of himself and his wife. Then he tried to substitute a son born from his side union with another servant. Again not from that joined flesh. The promise was not to Abraham and his concubine. It was to Abraham. So Sarah and Hagar were not written-up based on some overlay as miraculously describing the covenant (the promise) and something else. It really was that.

But in Job, God is putting Job and his friends in their place. He is not providing imagery about what Jesus will be. Or what the church metaphorically might be. God is not challenging Job to rise up and have the "arm of strength" that God does. He is declaring that he never has and never will have it. He is making it clear that all of our ruminations about why bad things happen to good people are just flights of fancy from people who have no clue what is really going on.

This is the kind of word that set Job to silence. To realize that no matter how it came to be, that he was not able to demand a different outcome or to lay blame. Or to insist that the fact that it happened lowered the status of God. But instead you answer the question about why or how evil and God can coexist with nonsense about God suggesting that we should actually have an arm of strength.

Question. If we really should have it — even if only as the church — should we be able to wield it in such a fashion that we simply order that evil cease and desist? If not, then how is this a response to zeek about God v evil. If so, then why haven't we done it?
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:22 AM   #140
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I will address your comments surrounding Job by speaking to this specific point.
We should have and arm and a voice like God? I hope you are saying that with a "yeah, right" sarcasm because otherwise you are suggesting that God said this because he intends that we should actually have such an arm or such a voice.

If that is what you are saying, then I must strongly disagree. God is making it clear that we are ignorant of the creation. That we are powerless. That we have no sound of authority. God did it his way. He did not take counsel from even one of us. (This despite Bill Cosby's Noah suggesting that God just send rain for 40 days and nights until the sewers back up rather than the ridiculously large number God originally said. "Right!!")

How anything transpires on the earth is not ours to make demands concerning. We did not create it. We did not ordain the laws under which things work. We didn't even get to make suggestions. God is not suggesting that we are in the process of getting there. We cannot demand that it all change because we have no say in it either way. On what basis can you read this any other way?
According to the context God has answered Job's question by asking Do you have an arm like God, do you have a voice like God?

Job's question directed to God, though lengthy and somewhat difficult to piece together is in three parts:

1. What was the purpose of my life?
2. Who and where is the one who can judge the wicked? Also, to be fair, this judge should have eyes of flesh.
3. What was my sin that you have caused me this sin?

I read your response and it is not an answer to these questions. How is your reading of what the Lord said and answer to Job's question?
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:23 AM   #141
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Please show in the NT where the book of Job is referenced as regards the New Man.
Sure, once you show the reference that God and Satan are portrayed as Buffoons. Until then I can't take you or your ideas seriously.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:24 AM   #142
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So you've gotten out of Lee's movement, but haven't got Lee's movement out of you?
Typical. You said my response was weak, this is lame.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:31 AM   #143
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And there has been no effort to establish how this response to the four (five?) who were sitting around bemoaning Job's condition and suggesting that they knew what God was doing with it all has to do with the "one new man." The challenges are, on their face, not about Jesus or the one new man. They are putting these men, including Job, in their place as mortals who are clearly not the ones who have such an arm of strength or voice of power.
The context is that the Lord is answering Job's question. Your response does not do that, it ignores his question. Show me how your interpretation is an answer to Job's question and we will have something to discuss. According to the context the book of Job states clearly that the Lord's response is an answer to the question, it states clearly that Job perceives that it is, and that he is quite satisfied with that answer.

Now granted, Job asks many questions, some are directed to the other men, some are rhetorical, some are asked in parables that he gives. However, it does appear that his question directed towards God is in three parts and I have laid that out briefly.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:41 AM   #144
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Sure, once you show the reference that God and Satan are portrayed as Buffoons. Until then I can't take you or your ideas seriously.
That's a dodge. So what if I think betting with God is ridiculous, since God knows the outcome beforehand ... at, I might add, the expense of Job and his family.

The issue at hand is your statement that the book of Job speaks of God building a new man. So again, please show me where the NT uses the book of Job in regards the building of a new man. Else I'm gonna conclude you are seeing things that aren't there....
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:41 AM   #145
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According to the context God has answered Job's question by asking Do you have an arm like God, do you have a voice like God?

Job's question directed to God, though lengthy and somewhat difficult to piece together is in three parts:

1. What was the purpose of my life?
2. Who and where is the one who can judge the wicked? Also, to be fair, this judge should have eyes of flesh.
3. What was my sin that you have caused me this sin?

I read your response and it is not an answer to these questions. How is your reading of what the Lord said and answer to Job's question?
You didn't ask these questions. But I will humor you since Job did.

God answered those questions by saying that Job asked the questions from a position of ignorance. And he asked it as if he should be able to demand a satisfactory answer within his understanding. But God asserts that he (Job) does not have the standing to understand. He does not have the counsel to ordain the very fabric of the universe. He does not have the power to make it so. Yet he challenges the only one who does as if a created being has the standing to challenge the creator over how things were made.

This book is the early discussion about the coexistence of God and evil. It is not a prophetic book about Jesus or the church. Since it is written within the framework of the righteousness of the God who created it all and who keeps it all going, you can find parallels of truth in it. If God really made it all, then there will be the signs of that truth in everything. But that does not make everything a comment on everything else.

The answer to the three questions is/was: I am God. I am the one who created you. It is not about you.

The answer was not: You should have this arm of power. Jesus will come and be both God and man. And if you happened to be alive in the age after Jesus, you could be part of the "corporate man" that will have such an arm of power.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:41 AM   #146
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I will address your comments surrounding Job by speaking to this specific point.
We should have and arm and a voice like God? I hope you are saying that with a "yeah, right" sarcasm because otherwise you are suggesting that God said this because he intends that we should actually have such an arm or such a voice.

If that is what you are saying, then I must strongly disagree. God is making it clear that we are ignorant of the creation. That we are powerless. That we have no sound of authority. God did it his way. He did not take counsel from even one of us. (This despite Bill Cosby's Noah suggesting that God just send rain for 40 days and nights until the sewers back up rather than the ridiculously large number God originally said. "Right!!")

How anything transpires on the earth is not ours to make demands concerning. We did not create it. We did not ordain the laws under which things work. We didn't even get to make suggestions. God is not suggesting that we are in the process of getting there. We cannot demand that it all change because we have no say in it either way. On what basis can you read this any other way?
Your question and the complete post is here, you asked on what basis can you read this any other way than the way you presented, which is that God is the all powerful creator and we know nothing and can do nothing.

How is that an answer to Job's question?
If that is in fact the Lord's answer, then what was the point of Job's life? Who and where is the man that will judge the wicked? What was Job's sin that God has dealt with him thus?

You are saying that God has answered Job's question with a non sequitor, and that everyone is happy with that.

My basis for understanding God is the context of everything God has said and done in the Bible. How is Genesis, which says "God created man in His image and after His likeness" not relevant here? Chapter 1 says "the Earth became waste and void", in the Prophets the Lord said "I didn't create the Earth waste and void". The point is very clear, you can't read Genesis without looking at the other books of the Bible. Every book is important in understanding the Bible.

How could the entire record of Jesus Christ not be relevant here? Clearly, if we are going to talk about a Man that God would boast of being upright, that surely would apply to Jesus. If we are going to talk about a man that was attacked by Satan unrighteously that would certainly apply to Jesus.

How can anyone say that these verses don't apply to Jesus?
Job 40:9 Hast thou an arm like God? or canst thou thunder with a voice like him?
40:10 Deck thyself now with majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty.
40:11 Cast abroad the rage of thy wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him.
40:12 Look on every one that is proud, and bring him low; and tread down the wicked in their place.
40:13 Hide them in the dust together; and bind their faces in secret.
40:14 Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee.

How is it that you can read the Bible and you don't see Jesus?

This whole "this is lee esque" is pathetic. The Bible talks about Jesus. That is not WL doctrine, that is fact.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:44 AM   #147
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That's a dodge. So what if I think betting with God is ridiculous, since God knows the outcome beforehand ... at, I might add, the expense of Job and his family.

The issue at hand is your statement that the book of Job speaks of God building a new man. So again, please show me where the NT uses the book of Job in regards the building of a new man.
Sure, show me where Job bet with God and we can begin our discussion there.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:49 AM   #148
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And this is what I find continually lacking in these kinds of arguments...
This is what I find totally lacking in your argument.

1. The Bible says that the Lord's response was an answer to Job's question. Your interpretation doesn't answer his question.
2. The Bible says that Job received this response as an answer, whereas those the Lord rebuked gave an interpretation similar to you, God is almighty, if He wants to do this, tough. Job rejected that response.
3. The bible repeatedly requires you to read the Bible to understand other parts of the Bible. I gave the example in Gen 1, Peter even says that no verse is of its own interpretation, yet your rule is that every verse must be of its own interpretation. You violate Biblical principles and common sense in your interpretation.
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Old 09-02-2011, 05:55 AM   #149
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But in Job, God is putting Job and his friends in their place.
God is putting Job in his place? Where do get this. The record is very clear that this is not the case.

Job1:1 There was a man in the land of Uz, whose name was Job; and that man was perfect and upright, and one that feared God, and eschewed evil.

1:8 And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil?

1:22 In all this Job sinned not, nor charged God foolishly.

2:3 And the LORD said unto Satan, Hast thou considered my servant Job, that there is none like him in the earth, a perfect and an upright man, one that feareth God, and escheweth evil? and still he holdeth fast his integrity, although thou movedst me against him, to destroy him without cause.

42:7 And it was so, that after the LORD had spoken these words unto Job, the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, My wrath is kindled against thee, and against thy two friends: for ye have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job hath.
42:8 Therefore take unto you now seven bullocks and seven rams, and go to my servant Job, and offer up for yourselves a burnt offering; and my servant Job shall pray for you: for him will I accept: lest I deal with you after your folly, in that ye have not spoken of me the thing which is right, like my servant Job.
42:9 So Eliphaz the Temanite and Bildad the Shuhite and Zophar the Naamathite went, and did according as the LORD commanded them: the LORD also accepted Job.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:02 AM   #150
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Question. If we really should have it — even if only as the church — should we be able to wield it in such a fashion that we simply order that evil cease and desist? If not, then how is this a response to zeek about God v evil. If so, then why haven't we done it?
In the book of Revelation it shows that Satan is cast into a pit and ultimately judged. It also shows that the New Jerusalem descends to the Earth. The nations walk in the light. Also the NT shows that the saints will reign, with Jesus, on this earth.

I also have previously answered the question about why we haven't done it yet. First, there is a process in which the church, as the One New Man, matures. This is taking time. According to the record of the Bible the total time is about 10,000 years. The Bible makes it clear that our perspective of time is different from God's, so in our time frame this may seem quite long, in God's time frame it is similar to a week. Of course I used the analogy of building the Irving hall and in that time frame it took 37 seconds.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:04 AM   #151
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Sure, show me where Job bet with God and we can begin our discussion there.
You know I can't show where Job made a bet with God.

That would be the devil. Who was such a buffoon that he didn't know better than to bet with God. The humor comes in because doing so makes the devil a laughingstock.....

Now back to the NT using the book of Job to speak of God building a new man. And if you are seeing things that aren't there.

Your proof so far is very weak and unconvincing, bro Z. I'm hoping you surprise me and redeem yourself of this, so far, ridiculous claim.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:14 AM   #152
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Typical. You said my response was weak, this is lame.
Actually, I have the same thoughts. It is not weak. It is a short post with a rather profound observation. You can't just dismiss it because the one making it is so often found to make crazy statements.

You splice unrelated things together through the existence of a common word. Or the fact that it is about God. Or about man. I've hardly heard this kind of nonsense outside of Nee and Lee. You may not like them. Or want to be associated with them. But you practice their ways with gusto.

You don't answer my questions concerning the alleged links between Job and the One New Man or concerning claims that there is proof that Jesse taught David anything. You just say that because you can make generalities not recorded anywhere, it must be so. And carry on as if it qualifies as a preponderance of evidence.

I sort of want to misquote a John Houseman line and say "Mister ZNP, here is a dime. Take it, call your mother, and tell her there is serious doubt about you ever becoming a teacher of the Bible." Oh, there are still a few people who will be overwhelmed by the faux spirituality that is exuded by the kind of arguments you make here. They continue to ensnare a number of people to the teachings of Lee. But if there is any real meaning to the charge to "come, let us reason," then this kind of nonsense will be cast aside very quickly.

It is easier to deal with the nonsense of those "I write it so it is scripture" guys. Everyone sees through their ignorance. And despite the number of people who don't want to put up with the nonsense of 11of101, his can be seen through. But these kinds of nonsense arguments are entirely more insidious because they drip with a wet veneer of spirituality and more closely use the words of scripture to say things that simply are not true. Or are not true with respect to the passages being discussed.

As I have said over and over, it is one thing to openly take one passage and springboard to something else. But to declare that the first passage is about that something else is to obliterate the meaning of the first and make it subservient to the second. This is something that is undertaken way to often by Lee. And now it seems way too often by you. Job is not about the One New Man. Even if you can find a springboard for that unrelated discussion. You mock the very discussion of God and evil by saying it is so.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:14 AM   #153
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You didn't ask these questions. But I will humor you since Job did.

God answered those questions by saying that Job asked the questions from a position of ignorance. And he asked it as if he should be able to demand a satisfactory answer within his understanding. But God asserts that he (Job) does not have the standing to understand. He does not have the counsel to ordain the very fabric of the universe. He does not have the power to make it so. Yet he challenges the only one who does as if a created being has the standing to challenge the creator over how things were made.
Wow, that is some gospel. Basically Job wanted a satisfactory answer and God said he doesn't have the standing to understand! Sweet.

Unfortunately for this interpretation, it is false. We have learned quite a bit about how the Earth was formed. We have also learned quite a bit about the "foundation" of the Earth.

1. Our foundation is completely related to having a liquid outer core and a solid inner core. As a result we have a magnetic field that shields us from deadly solar radiation. And yes, we are well able to peer into the core of the earth using seismic waves and established physical principles.
2. Our foundation is also completely tied into our moon, which is unlike any other moon in this solar system. Our moon is the result of a collision with a planet that was similar in size to Mars. As a result we do not wobble on our axis of rotation. If we did, like the other planets do, climate change would be so extreme that we would constantly have major extinctions on this planet.
3. Our foundation is also completely tied into the fact that the core of the Earth is generating tremendous heat from radioactive decay. As a result we have plate tectonics, without which we would not have life on this planet as we now know it, Perhaps the only thing that would be able to survive would be bacteria.

Now what is interesting is that once you realize the key components of the Earth's foundation that set the stage for life you also realize that they all took place when the Moon collided with the Earth. The most catastrophic collision in all of Earth's history. So it has a very nice relevance to the catastrophes that have befallen Job.

I also object to the idea that we cannot understand the fabric of the universe.

The NT says "be imitators of God". God is a creator. Imitating the creator helps us learn about and then use the creation. Computers, telecommunications, space ships and satellites, electricity, etc. These are all examples of how imitating God can open our understanding.

We also learn, as we understand how the universe and our world works, how to live in it without being subject to natural catastrophes like earthquakes, volcanoes and hurricanes.

So I find your interpretation to be completely untrue.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:16 AM   #154
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In the book of Revelation it shows that Satan is cast into a pit and ultimately judged. It also shows that the New Jerusalem descends to the Earth. The nations walk in the light. Also the NT shows that the saints will reign, with Jesus, on this earth.
All irrelevant to Job. Not recorded there. Not part of the discussion.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:18 AM   #155
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You know I can't show where Job made a bet with God.

That would be the devil. Who was such a buffoon that he didn't know better than to bet with God. The humor comes in because doing so makes the devil a laughingstock.....

Now back to the NT using the book of Job to speak of God building a new man. And if you are seeing things that aren't there.

Your proof so far is very weak and unconvincing, bro Z. I'm hoping you surprise me and redeem yourself of this, so far, ridiculous claim.
Whoa! Portraying the Devil as a buffoon is quite a bit different from what you said, which is that the book of Job portrays both God and the Devil as buffoons. Did you misspeak?
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:20 AM   #156
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All irrelevant to Job. Not recorded there. Not part of the discussion.
You are mistaken.

Job 40:11 Cast abroad the rage of thy wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him.
40:12 Look on every one that is proud, and bring him low; and tread down the wicked in their place.
40:13 Hide them in the dust together; and bind their faces in secret.
40:14 Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee.

Surely these verses refer to Satan who fell due to his pride and is the wicked one.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:23 AM   #157
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Whoa! Portraying the Devil as a buffoon is quite a bit different from what you said, which is that the book of Job portrays both God and the Devil as buffoons. Did you misspeak?
I'm not done yet ... and neither are you. Please surprise me bro Z. Connect the dots that I can't see and, show me where the NT references the book of Job in regards God building a new man.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:23 AM   #158
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Actually, I have the same thoughts. It is not weak. It is a short post with a rather profound observation. You can't just dismiss it because the one making it is so often found to make crazy statements.
Not true. If you lose your credibility it is a waste of time and foolish to entertain foolish questions. He said that the book of Job portrays God as a buffoon. I do not need to be entangled in that malarkey unless he backs it up.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:27 AM   #159
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You splice unrelated things together through the existence of a common word. Or the fact that it is about God. Or about man. I've hardly heard this kind of nonsense outside of Nee and Lee. You may not like them. Or want to be associated with them. But you practice their ways with gusto.

You don't answer my questions concerning the alleged links between Job and the One New Man or concerning claims that there is proof that Jesse taught David anything. You just say that because you can make generalities not recorded anywhere, it must be so. And carry on as if it qualifies as a preponderance of evidence.
Nonsense refers to your interpretation that we cannot understand the universe that God has created and therefore have no standing to discuss righteousness with Him or to ask why He has treated us this way.

Nonsense refers to you saying that the book of Job is about God putting Job in his place.

Nonsense is saying that the conclusion to this book is the pathetic answer you say that the Lord gives to Job, basically you can't understand so tough.

Nonsense is the idea that you cannot refer to the rest of the Bible to understand a verse, even though Peter says this is the only way you can understand it.

Nonsense is reading the Book of Job and not seeing that it is about Jesus.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:31 AM   #160
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I sort of want to misquote a John Houseman line and say "Mister ZNP, here is a dime. Take it, call your mother, and tell her there is serious doubt about you ever becoming a teacher of the Bible."
OBi Wan has spoken and turns out that John Houseman is also a Jedi knight? Is this what the guys at the Star Wars conventions dream about, being a teacher of the Bible?
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:47 AM   #161
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Wow, that is some gospel. Basically Job wanted a satisfactory answer and God said he doesn't have the standing to understand! Sweet.

Unfortunately for this interpretation, it is false. We have learned quite a bit about how the Earth was formed. We have also learned quite a bit about the "foundation" of the Earth.

1. Our foundation is completely related to having a liquid outer core and a solid inner core. As a result we have a magnetic field that shields us from deadly solar radiation. And yes, we are well able to peer into the core of the earth using seismic waves and established physical principles.
2. Our foundation is also completely tied into our moon, which is unlike any other moon in this solar system. Our moon is the result of a collision with a planet that was similar in size to Mars. As a result we do not wobble on our axis of rotation. If we did, like the other planets do, climate change would be so extreme that we would constantly have major extinctions on this planet.
3. Our foundation is also completely tied into the fact that the core of the Earth is generating tremendous heat from radioactive decay. As a result we have plate tectonics, without which we would not have life on this planet as we now know it, Perhaps the only thing that would be able to survive would be bacteria.

I also object to the idea that we cannot understand the fabric of the universe.

The NT says "be imitators of God". God is a creator. Imitating the creator helps us learn about and then use the creation. Computers, telecommunications, space ships and satellites, electricity, etc. These are all examples of how imitating God can open our understanding.

We also learn, as we understand how the universe and our world works, how to live in it without being subject to natural catastrophes like earthquakes, volcanoes and hurricanes.

So I find your interpretation to be completely untrue.
???

What kind of answer is this? Some kind of spiritual philosophy?

Who ever called Job the "gospel"?

You think that because we know more about the universe than they did in Job's time that we should be able to demand an answer from God? You would find that the answer is still the same. You (and the rest of us) are clueless. We may be able to claim great understanding of what now is. But we have no understanding of what was in God's mind as he put it in place. As he made the laws that we "understand" work the way they do. Our knowledge is limited to grasping at a weak understanding of what was made to be so — and at the exclusion of alternate ways it could have been put together.

And any claim that we now have such a great understanding of the universe, coupled with these kinds of fanciful skips through the Bible on the link of a few common words makes me fear that you are talking about a God that you can figure out. A God that we can become (even if not in deity). Not a God that declares that we do not have his strength or authority. Or that created everything we see without so much as a single consult of us.

This kind of talk undermines the very fabric of a forum like this. It is packaged in a way that cannot simply be ignored. But it is busy ignoring the very real things that God has said in a rush to make it all about us. All about us becoming the One New Man. Or some other overarching construct that is used to reinterpret virtually every scripture.

And, once again, this is very Lee-esque. You don't have to like the comparison. But it is real.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:51 AM   #162
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OBi Wan has spoken and turns out that John Houseman is also a Jedi knight? Is this what the guys at the Star Wars conventions dream about, being a teacher of the Bible?
"OBW" has nothing to do with Star Wars. So your pathetic jab missed.
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Old 09-02-2011, 06:53 AM   #163
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OBi Wan has spoken and turns out that John Houseman is also a Jedi knight? Is this what the guys at the Star Wars conventions dream about, being a teacher of the Bible?
[Z's Jedi mind trick, with wave of hand] : "The book of Job is about God building a New Man."
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:12 AM   #164
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God answered those questions by saying that Job asked the questions from a position of ignorance. And he asked it as if he should be able to demand a satisfactory answer within his understanding. But God asserts that he (Job) does not have the standing to understand. He does not have the counsel to ordain the very fabric of the universe. He does not have the power to make it so. Yet he challenges the only one who does as if a created being has the standing to challenge the creator over how things were made.
42:7 And it was so, that after the LORD had spoken these words unto Job, the LORD said to Eliphaz the Temanite, My wrath is kindled against thee, and against thy two friends: for ye have not spoken of me the thing that is right, as my servant Job hath.

What is it that Eliphaz and the two friends spoke that kindled God’s wrath?

Zophar, one of the friends --
11:7 Canst thou by searching find out God? canst thou find out the Almighty unto perfection?
11:8 It is as high as heaven; what canst thou do? deeper than hell; what canst thou know?
11:9 The measure thereof is longer than the earth, and broader than the sea.

This is what OBW said – “God answered those questions by saying that Job asked the questions from a position of ignorance.”
And OBW – “But God asserts that he (Job) does not have the standing to understand.”


Eliphaz says “Will He enter with thee into judgment?”

This is what OBW said -- “Yet he challenges the only one who does as if a created being has the standing to challenge the creator over how things were made.”

Eliphaz says 5:17 “Behold, happy is the man whom God correcteth: therefore despise not thou the chastening of the Almighty:”

This is what OBW said -- the book of Job is about “God putting Job in his place”
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:20 AM   #165
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???What kind of answer is this? Some kind of spiritual philosophy? Who ever called Job the "gospel"?
I used lower case g for gospel, not "The Gospel" but gospel as in good news. It is "good news" to read a book that basically asks a lot of questions that many ask, including Zeek and only to learn "hey you are too stupid to understand so forget it."

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You think that because we know more about the universe than they did in Job's time that we should be able to demand an answer from God?
I think that because we can know how God laid the foundation of the Earth it is incorrect to say that God is saying that we can't understand. Which is what you said and which I have quoted in numerous posts.

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You would find that the answer is still the same. You (and the rest of us) are clueless. We may be able to claim great understanding of what now is. But we have no understanding of what was in God's mind as he put it in place. As he made the laws that we "understand" work the way they do. Our knowledge is limited to grasping at a weak understanding of what was made to be so — and at the exclusion of alternate ways it could have been put together.

And any claim that we now have such a great understanding of the universe, coupled with these kinds of fanciful skips through the Bible on the link of a few common words makes me fear that you are talking about a God that you can figure out. A God that we can become (even if not in deity). Not a God that declares that we do not have his strength or authority. Or that created everything we see without so much as a single consult of us.
You said that God asserts that Job does not have the standing to understand. That is false. We have come to understand much more than we ever did and we will continue to learn more. I am asserting that this is not what God is saying, rather that God is saying it is foolish to complain about the way He is laying the foundation in a man if you have no knowledge of how God laid the foundation of the Earth. Sure enough, if you study the Earth you realize the foundation for life was laid in a cataclysmic event. That is very much relevant to Zeek's question, and to Job's question. That is relevant to answering Job's questions.

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This kind of talk undermines the very fabric of a forum like this. It is packaged in a way that cannot simply be ignored. But it is busy ignoring the very real things that God has said in a rush to make it all about us. All about us becoming the One New Man. Or some other overarching construct that is used to reinterpret virtually every scripture.

And, once again, this is very Lee-esque. You don't have to like the comparison. But it is real.
If this is so Lee esque, why don't you quote what Lee shared on the book of Job. Lee never shared any of this. This is a genuine straw man argument that you have not provided the least bit of evidence to support. Provide one quote from WL that he interpreted Job this way, because I never saw it.
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:23 AM   #166
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"OBW" has nothing to do with Star Wars. So your pathetic jab missed.
This post was a direct referral to Post #134, if you take offense to this why didn't you say that to Awareness? Why do you wait 26 posts to all of a sudden take issue? This is hypocrisy.
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:24 AM   #167
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How can anyone say that these verses don't apply to Jesus?
Job 40:9 Hast thou an arm like God? or canst thou thunder with a voice like him?
40:10 Deck thyself now with majesty and excellency; and array thyself with glory and beauty.
40:11 Cast abroad the rage of thy wrath: and behold every one that is proud, and abase him.
40:12 Look on every one that is proud, and bring him low; and tread down the wicked in their place.
40:13 Hide them in the dust together; and bind their faces in secret.
40:14 Then will I also confess unto thee that thine own right hand can save thee.

How is it that you can read the Bible and you don't see Jesus?

If ,as we used to sing "Everything is in Christ and Christ is everything" how can we argue with ZNP's interpretation? The NT authors saw the Christ narrative in the Hebrew Bible in passages where it was far from obvious or necessary. So ZNP and WN and WL arguably follow a long practiced method of Christian hermeneutics. On the other hand, the practice may involve projection, reading into the passage what is not there, or creative misreading.

In 40:14 it should be noted that Jesus' right hand did not save him. God's hand or the Father's hand was required for that. Of course, one could reply that Jesus could have saved himself but chose not to in deference to the father's will, which argument is already made in the Gospels.

Nevertheless, none of this answers the problem of evil in anything like a parsimonious way. Evil has a pivotal role in the Christian interpretation of the Biblical narrative. Theoretically, as far as we know, God could have spared his creation the existence of evil, but for reasons of his own which are perhaps intimated but never explicitly stated or explained in the Bible, chose not to. He allowed evil in order that history would express his glory which includes a greater good than would be realized by a simply perfect but static creation. Still, we must recognize, that this is a theodicy which is by no means self evident in the empirical world. It is thoroughly and completely the answer of faith "the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:27 AM   #168
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This kind of talk undermines the very fabric of a forum like this. It is packaged in a way that cannot simply be ignored. But it is busy ignoring the very real things that God has said in a rush to make it all about us. All about us becoming the One New Man. Or some other overarching construct that is used to reinterpret virtually every scripture.

And, once again, this is very Lee-esque. You don't have to like the comparison. But it is real.
ZNP has continually quoted scriptures to support his views, but OBW and awareness do not. Sounds to me like OBW's "kind of forum" is based on sarcasm and natural reasoning. awareness's kind of forum is based on unbelief, portraying God as a buffoon.

Since OBW cannot respond to ZNP's understanding of the scriptures, he resorts to the ultimate "cheap shot" -- calling ZNP "Lee-esque" by his quoting of scripture.

It's quite interesting how the God-basher and the Lee-hater have corroborated together to oppose the Bible-quoter.
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:28 AM   #169
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If ,as we used to sing "Everything is in Christ and Christ is everything" how can we argue with ZNP's interpretation? The NT authors saw the Christ narrative in the Hebrew Bible in passages where it was far from obvious or necessary. So ZNP and WN and WL arguably follow a long practiced method of Christian hermeneutics. On the other hand, the practice may involve projection, reading into the passage what is not there, or creative misreading.

In 40:14 it should be noted that Jesus' right hand did not save him. God's hand or the Father's hand was required for that. Of course, one could reply that Jesus could have saved himself but chose not to in deference to the father's will, which argument is already made in the Gospels.

Nevertheless, none of this answers the problem of evil in anything like a parsimonious way. Evil has a pivotal role in the Christian interpretation of the Biblical narrative. Theoretically, as far as we know, God could have spared his creation the existence of evil, but for reasons of his own which are perhaps intimated but never explicitly stated or explained in the Bible, chose not to. He allowed evil in order that history would express his glory which includes a greater good than would be realized by a simply perfect but static creation. Still, we must recognize, that this is a theodicy which is by no means self evident in the empircal world. It is thoroughly and completely the answer of faith "the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen."
If you accept that the trial, false accusations, conviction and crucifixion of Jesus were evil, and that the crucifixion of Jesus is the foundation of our salvation, then evil was used to lay the foundation of our salvation.
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:31 AM   #170
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ZNP has continually quoted scriptures to support his views, but OBW and awareness do not. Sounds to me like OBW's "kind of forum" is based on sarcasm and natural reasoning. awareness's kind of forum is based on unbelief, portraying God as a buffoon.

Since OBW cannot respond to ZNP's understanding of the scriptures, he resorts to the ultimate "cheap shot" -- calling ZNP "Lee-esque" by his quoting of scripture.

It's quite interesting how the God-basher and the Lee-hater have corroborated together to oppose the Bible-quoter.
Wow, did you actually read through all that?
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:39 AM   #171
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The book of Job is about God building a New Man.
I had to clean it up for you a little, but now you got it.
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:45 AM   #172
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This post was a direct referral to Post #134, if you take offense to this why didn't you say that to Awareness? Why do you wait 26 posts to all of a sudden take issue? This is hypocrisy.
Because awareness did not mock me in the process.
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Old 09-02-2011, 07:52 AM   #173
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Because awareness did not mock me in the process.
Refer to post #152 by OBW "I sort of want to misquote a John Houseman line and say "Mister ZNP, here is a dime. Take it, call your mother, and tell her there is serious doubt about you ever becoming a teacher of the Bible."

You mock me. Now you are complaining that someone is mocking you as a response?:verysad:

As I said, hypocrisy.
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Old 09-02-2011, 08:18 AM   #174
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Refer to post #152 by OBW "I sort of want to misquote a John Houseman line and say "Mister ZNP, here is a dime. Take it, call your mother, and tell her there is serious doubt about you ever becoming a teacher of the Bible."

You mock me. Now you are complaining that someone is mocking you as a response?:verysad:

As I said, hypocrisy.
But know this -- that in the the last days, mockers will come with mocking, going on and on and on and on according to their own lusts, saying where is the proof of His coming? ... but, these things are hidden from them because of their own willfulness!

How bad I am, sounding like Lee and quoting scripture.
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Old 09-02-2011, 08:25 AM   #175
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Default Re: The Lord's answer to Job

Quote:
Originally Posted by zeek View Post
In 40:14 it should be noted that Jesus' right hand did not save him. God's hand or the Father's hand was required for that. Of course, one could reply that Jesus could have saved himself but chose not to in deference to the father's will, which argument is already made in the Gospels.
Finally, they quote scripture. Too bad they use a verse that seems to indicate that Jesus was not omnipotent or impotent in some way.

Jesus also said, “For this reason the Father loves Me, because I lay down My life so that I may take it again. No one has taken it away from Me, but I lay it down on My own initiative. I have authority to lay it down, and I have authority to take it up again. This commandment I received from My Father.
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