Athiest To Christian

As a young man I was a athiest and evolutionist.  I studied various forms of science and this led me to how and what people believe.  Someone at one time challenged me to find scientific statements that can be proven false in the bible.  I went thru the Bible thoroughly to find faulty information and discovered that many of the science it used we used much later or did not take as science for thousands of years later.  I enjoy discussing the Bible with those who really want to disscuss things and not just the Bible bashers who can only use hate and poor school yard remarks.  I know everyone has questions and doubts everyone has something they do not accept or understand in the Bible and it is great to talk about them and get different perspectivies.  So for anyone who is serious about disscussing things I am always open to it.

allofus allofus
46-50, M
7 Responses Apr 26, 2010

Sorry I have been gone for a long while.<br />
hxtp: You reject something just because you do not like it. Truth is truth no matter whether we like it or not. You may not believe the Bible to be true and that is your right, but who gives you that right?<br />
You talk about personal morality but ba<x>sed on who's concepts and beliefs. You talk about things that can not be made into law or enforced. Caring, love and forgiveness. These things have to come out of a heart that has been given these things.<br />
Your last comment is funny the most mass murders are done in the name of the good of the people or to encourage the growth of human evolution.. Most wars are not fought out of religion or ideology but out of greed and power. <br />
If you hold on to your belief strong enough it becomes really no different than the ones you say you are against. Just something to think about.

No to all you say. Truth is not permanent or absolute; very often it depends on who has the biggest weapons. No one gives me the right to judge something is not true. I take that right as one of the human concepts for constructing civil society. Read and understand Rousseau and the post enlightenment philosophers, especially Dewey, Darwin, and Rourty. The development of a personal morality of caring, love, and forgiveness is an intellectual and and personal construct that does not come for the heart but the mind. It does happen that the Jesus of the New Testament talked about these concepts, but so did Buddha, Laotze, Socrates, and many others. Christian religious and the other organized monothestic religious have screwed them up through the heresies of Paul and the editing of hate into the New Testament.

War is terrible and a form of mass murder sanctioned my religions for furthering their power, wealth, and control. I think your splitting hairs when you try to remove religion from the greed, power, and control that leads to war. Each side believes it to be in the right, and religion, and cultural oppression are codependent.

Furthermore, beliefs are stronger than data. Beliefs are real. I am an atheist, and I openly declare that gods are real, as are religious of all varieties, but they lack the various criteria that I (and many scientists require): 1) the ability to falsify beliefs using data and new interpretations, 2) the process of replicability under controlled conditions, 3) observability with a variety of instruments and tools, and 4) revision when more data points another way. Beliefs close systems of thought and regulate them into acceptable realities that don't challenge the power and control of religion. I am for asking questions and continuing to discuss, but I don't accept scholastic arguments based on tradition or a privileged set of writing.

Finally, name calling is not useful in this discourse. It would seem that you will not consider my position because you do not like it. You seem unwilling to consider the complex nature of truths that have been cogently argued outside of theological circles related to issues in the construction and validation of truths, especially in light of research on complexity, fractals, systems, processes, and recursion and the amazing fallibility of logic that has been know since the ancient Greeks and Hebrews. If we narrow our scope to Christianity, I believe that you can name many wars that were fought for religious purposes sometimes disguised within political agendas.

I'm an atheist. I have read the interesting stories in the Bible, but they are just stories. I reject the strictures of the Old Testament completely as being about control and elitism; I do not believe there is any "chosen" people because that is a ethnocentric absurdity. I don't see anything that suggests otherwise except from partisans of various churches who have a strong bias in maintaining the size and power of their particular church/religion. We need to recognize that religion is failing as a moral force in the world and causing great evil. It needs to be replaced with the development of personal moral/ethical codes, no matter the religious beliefs of the individual. The beliefs in caring, love, and forgiveness are more important that any religion or deity; we need to counter hate and violence in all their forms with models of morality that use nonviolence and find common groups for caring. All debates among religions about their own "truths" seem exercises in futility to me and at worst lead to mass murder.

The Jews were "chosen" not because they're better than anybody. It's because Jesus had to be born through SOME race, and the Hebrews/Jews were chosen many, many years before it happened! That's all.

The world definitely needs more love (not religion; religions are collections of rules). Do remember, however, that according to Bible teaching God IS love! This is a fallen, sinful world... full of people with selfish agendas. We've all been there and, even a Christian, is still there to some measure. It's a lifelong process of growth until the time we see Jesus, face-to-face, and then we shall be like Him! (that's what the Bible teaches)

Can I challenge you not to give up on the Bible? It's the answer book of Life! Blessings to you.

I see the Bible as an important work of world literature on a par with scriptures of all great religions, but I do not revere it in a religious sense. It is a collection of wisdom and stories from the Neolithic Period rather than "revealed" truths. I think it's important to study such texts along with their historical and cultural contexts.

Penny your last line is something great about God and the Bible. God is unapologetic to who he is and what he does. He has no regrets of what he has done, he just does what is right according to him and moves on. Does God have wrath and anger towards certian things, yes he does. Is he still a loving God, yes he is. God shows himself in ways we might relate or understand, but he can not show us in His entirity we could not handle it. We barely handle him the way we know him now.

See my comments on Penny's post about the last lines. Here's how I interpret your statements: The writers, editors, translators, and interpreters of the Bible are unapologetic for the deity you revere and interpret that deity as being male and doing all sorts of things. While the apologists for that dirty claim him to be infallible, all-knowing, and perfect (and there are long lists of superlatives like these), they excuse his petulant, violent, destructive, and cruel behaviors because they claim to have the inside track on all truth and life everlasting, and after all, their deity is all-goodness and love and caring. This deity never appears but works in mysterious ways to cause everything and knows everything including evil which he created (after all he'd have to understand that stuff about free will because he created that, too). The editors even inserted aspects of this temper into Jesus in the New Testament to make sure that they could make the people fearful of the power of the collective priests who interpret the sacred truths of the book. I grant you that you (and many others) have created this fascinating mythology and believe it to be true. I understand the didactic purposes of stories and mythologies, but I see you as completely trapped in the third illusion of Descartes, the one that he couldn't dismiss, that this whole discourse of the Bible was conceived and executed by a brilliant demon (or evil genius). Why couldn't Descartes in his Meditations admit defeat and avoid reverting to ciruclar theological reasoning for the remainder of his work? Because, if he did that, he risked execution and his work would not have been widely published.

When I started to look subjectivly at the bible to find it flaws and obsurdities I also started to visit churches and talk to those of the religous faith. What I found was very few ever read the book they apsoused to be the ultimate truth and had no if any real reasoning behind what they believed. I did not become a Christian because of what someone taught me or how they lived their life. I became a Christian because of what the word of God, The Bibe, showed me about the world and how people really are. The people depicted in the bible are not usally the ones you would like to hang out with on a regualar basis. Some are ok but many are duffises to a great degree and yet God used them and lifted them up to be great men. It was not their doing but Gods intervention in their lives that made them great men of God.<br />
God never tried to start a religion like we see today. He chose a people at one time to represent him to the rest of the world and they messed up continually and often. He consistantly reached out to a world that not only rejected him but continued to mock him and those whom he had chosen. The Bible is by no means a list of mans greatest accomplishments, but of mans failures and God useing that to make what He intended despite our best efforts to mess it up. <br />
It is the only religous book I know of that shows mankind as the scheming and mistrusting creature he is and how totally dependt we our on a Saviour. The Bible shows us warts and all no other book does this. It is the only book where men have had arguments and disagreements with God and God is ok with it and answers maybe not the answers we want but answers the same. The only book that includes the line "Question all things." Everything the bible God himself but be willing to listen to the answers. It is a fascinating book one that is designed for the most simple and basic of minds and yet so reach and deep not even a life time could help you unravel all the meanings of the bible. It is unique and beyond our own comprihension and yet even a small child understands the basics of it. How could anyone truely say it was just another book written by ordinary men. One would have to lie to themselves to say such thing.

The Bible is clearly a book written by brilliant men (and possibly women). It was written by people who probably believed that they were inspired because they did hear voices telling them things -- I hear many voices in my head but I don't interpret them in this way. It is one of many such books that provide starting points for understanding various cultures, but you have to be willing to look at the other books and understand them as well. It does set out laws that are cruel and unforgiving (as to many of the other such books). It is judged as true by those who have committed themselves to being in that belief system, false by those who adhere to another system, and indeterminable by those who see deities as human constructions.

Yes, perhaps a religious debate is better left for a separate discussion!<br />
Although to comment, I do find the bible incredibly interesting. I'm more interested by the very concept I think. I think its marvelous how such a variety of people read and interpret its stories and messages differently.<br />
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As I say, I am an atheist personally, however whether or not I believe in god, is irrelevant to the importance in which I believe the bible, koran, guru granth sahib, etc, has to todays society, and the differences in culture.<br />
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Very interesting indeed!

The bible is interesting. I love reading it and learn from it every time I pick it up. I am doing bible studies now and it is amazing how much you learn when you go and start to break it down verse by verse. <br />
One question for the atheists and no offense here either. What if you are wrong? There could be no Heaven for you if you are. If you are right then you have nothing to lose. I have such a close relationship with God and the Holy Spirit for me there is no question. I know He exists!

I'm an atheist, but also find the bible interesting. I apologize if this causes offense to anyone religious who reads this post, but I find the commitment to something so vague, very interesting indeed.<br />
I've always been quite inspired by the bible, even if it should be something that I personally don't believe to be true (in terms of content). Religion itself interests me in the sense that people I live amongst in our society base their lives around it. <br />
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In actual fact, I can't say I know the bible very well at all, although I am always happy to read from it - from a mere non-religious, spectators point of view.

Are you sure you're not a poorly programmed robot? You dodge questions pretty good!