Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – my favorite dead horse to beat on: free will and predetermination

Christians often want their free will but to also claim that everything is their god’s will and that predestination is in play.  We can start off with the common definitions of both terms.

Free will: “is the ability to choose between different possible courses of action unimpeded”

Predestination:  equivalent to predeterminism: “all events are determined completely by previously existing causes”  – both definitions from Wikipedia.

One can of course try to use philosophical nonsense to try to split hairs but I find these to be quite universal.

 

Christians claim that Christians are corrupted and their version of their god is the only source of salvation.  Verses often cited for each are: 1.  Psalm 53:3; Romans 3:12; Ecclesiastes 7:29.  And 2. John 6:44; Romans 5:8; 1 John 4:19

To set the stage we need to examine these two claims.  Both types of Christians claim that humans are “corrupted” and need “saved”.   Corrupted by what or who?  Saved by what and how?

The bible has that a snake was in the garden, a garden that this god claimed was perfect.  This indicates that either the snake was considered necessary aka perfect or that this god wasn’t telling the truth.  Some Christians claim it was satan, some don’t, claiming a literal animal.  We also have Jews having their own opinions and these even nuttier folks, Noahides, which are either Jews who think that their god gave just Noah a certain set of laws or Gentiles who need an excuse feel extra special and to ignore the laws in the bible they find inconvenient but who find JC as a failure since there is no evidence for the character.  Always leave it to humans to find a smaller pond to imagine they are a big fish in.

We have this god insisting that humans not find about good or evil, threatening death on the day that they would eat the fruit.  Not death in the far future, death was, essentially, immediate.   The snake/satan countered this claim with what was evidently the truth, since neither Adam nor Eve died that day.  Eve, with the knowledge of good and evil *equivalent* to that of this god, decided that it was a good thing to give the fruit to Adam, who, having no reason to doubt her, accepted it and ate it.  Per some Christians, the knowledge of good and evil corrupted Adam and Eve in some manner.  If it didn’t corrupt this god, why would it corrupt them?

We also have the problem that this god, rather than forgiving Adam and Eve right then, starts a several millennium process of pain and misery for no reason.  It is for no reason since many, if not most, Christians, claim how forgiving their god is.

Then this god tries to correct things and fails repeatedly, an odd thing for a supposedly omniscient/omnipotent god.  It is only after millennia that this god decides it needs a blood sacrifice, like any other Bronze Age god.  It is only by a very poor attempt at “reinterpreting” the bible that we get that this god had any idea of doing this sacrifice early on.

It’s honest of some Christians that they admit that Christians don’t agree on some very basic things.  They directly contradict each other and since none of them can show that they have the one “truth”, and they cannot do what their bible promises they can do, there is no reason to accept the apologetics from either side for their supposed “truth” and attacks on each other.  All they have is baseless opinion that they all claim is supported by their god and told to them by the “holy spirit”.  This includes the vastly diverging ideas of free will and predestination.

If this god is picking and choosing which humans can accept it and then damning those it doesn’t choose for no fault of their own, then there is no free will.  A controlling force, especially an omnipotent one, eliminates free will, no matter what contradictory nonsence the bible says in other places.

Some Christians, in their attempt to make believe that these contradictory claims are not, illustrate what apologetics is all about, lying and trying to make sense out of nonsense.  It is trying to make up excuses why we shouldn’t take the bible as it is written but to try to assign some other intent that we have no evidence for.  It is built on presupposition that this god is real and *must* make sense, no matter how much the believer has to add to the mythos, and to differ from his fellow Christians.

Of course, when it is pointed out that this god damns people left and right, then the Christian claims that since the bible says that this god wants “everyone” to come to it, well, that part must be true too!  They can’t ignore one part over another since they’ve been told that *all* of the bible is their god’s word, so somehow, they have to make them work together.  They can’t accept that the bible is just a set of books by people who didn’t believe in the same things.

The verse cited from 2 Peter 3, arguing for a god that wants everyone to come to it, is problematic for our Christians, either the free will or predestination sides.  It’s a great excuse why this god hasn’t returned yet, to try to claim that this god “really” wants to give people all of the time they need to “come to repentance”.   The entire passage reads as such: “But do not ignore this one fact, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like one day. The Lord is not slow about his promise, as some think of slowness, but is patient with you,[b] not wanting any to perish, but all to come to repentance. 10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a loud noise, and the elements will be dissolved with fire, and the earth and everything that is done on it will be disclosed.”

As I’ve pointed out before, Christians usually only cite verse 9 and do their darndest to ignore the rest, intentionally leaving out the important context.  This causes all sorts of issues with how Christians want to claim the bible is literal in some parts but not in others.  How does this match up with the Genesis claims of a seven-day week of creation?  How does this work with JC’s claim that he’ll be back within the lives of people he is speaking to?  Well, it doesn’t since it flatly contradicts those claims.  This god should have been back long ago if days are literally 24 hours periods, but as we know, Christians don’t agree on that either.  If this god counts a millennium as a day in its experience, then seven days would have been 7,000 years, and if JC meant he’d be back in the number of millennia that the days of a human generation would be (around 20-30 years) that would be, conservatively, 7,300 days or 7,300 millennia aka 7,300,000 years.   This is the very silly number one gets when apologists want to pick and choose what they want words to mean.

Another common verse used as an excuse is from John 12, which causes more problems with its gnostic claims of a “ruler of the earth” which directly contradicts with Christians who claim that everything is their god’s will here on earth.  Either this god is responsible for everything or not.  Christians can’t cherry pick their way to having their cake and eating it too.

So, having established this background, we go on to the claim that predestination and free will can work together.

If this god is responsible for everything *and* wants every person to be saved, then an omnipotent being can have anything it wants.  If this god needs this, it can have everything it needs by definition.  If this god picks and chooses, then this god has what it wants and needs.  Free will has no place in the bible.  A god would have no reason to deny itself.  Indeed, it kills people repeatedly because it wants it to happen because an omnipotent god would not need anything.  It literally can’t fail at a task unless it chooses to.

There are a couple of verses in the bible that contradict completely free will.  They are in Romans 9 and Matthew 13.  Both state that this god prevents some people from accepting it before we were even born.  Full stop.  No exceptions at all.  Some Christians accept these verses as stated, some try to claim they mean something else than what is literally written.  JC and Paul, if they existed, say that this god needs to show off, so it damns some people so it has something to hurt as an example to the people it chose to allow to accept it.  Which makes sense how?  Why would anyone need an example made of others if it was so obvious about this god?

The Christians who don’t like such an authoritarian god try to add things to their bible so they can invent a god that is more in their image.  They insist that the context is “incomplete”, which is rather embarrassing for a “perfect” god and its supposed words.  They insist on ignoring the parts of the bible that don’t work with their new god. The parts about election and predestination are suddenly declared not true, though no where in the bible does it say that somehow those parts are null and void if you just don’t happen to like them.  All it has is contradictory verses that each Christian picks and chooses to determine their very own “truth”.

We have the following which says that predestination, not free will is what goes:

11 In Christ we have also obtained an inheritance, having been destined according to the purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to his counsel and will, 12 so that we, who were the first to set our hope on Christ, might live for the praise of his glory. 13 In him you also, when you had heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, and had believed in him, were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit; 14 this] is the pledge of our inheritance toward redemption as God’s own people, to the praise of his glory.” – Ephesians (predestined/predetermined to accept/praise this god)

15 For he says to Moses,“I will have mercy on whom I have mercy, and I will have compassion on whom I have compassion.”16 So it depends not on human will or exertion, but on God who shows mercy. 17 For the scripture says to Pharaoh, “I have raised you up for the very purpose of showing my power in you, so that my name may be proclaimed in all the earth.” 18 So then he has mercy on whomever he chooses, and he hardens the heart of whomever he chooses.

19 You will say to me then, “Why then does he still find fault? For who can resist his will?” 20 But who indeed are you, a human being, to argue with God? Will what is molded say to the one who molds it, “Why have you made me like this?” 21 Has the potter no right over the clay, to make out of the same lump one object for special use and another for ordinary use? 22 What if God, desiring to show his wrath and to make known his power, has endured with much patience the objects of wrath that are made for destruction; 23 and what if he has done so in order to make known the riches of his glory for the objects of mercy, which he has prepared beforehand for glory— 24 including us whom he has called, not from the Jews only but also from the Gentiles?) Romans 9  (the classic might equals right morality, that no one can question this god for abusing others to impress those he chose from their creation).

This god does not allow people to do what they want and then accept them for what they’ve done, it chooses them before they’ve done anything.  And this choice, commonly called “grace” by Christians, isn’t something that people earn.  Thus there is no free will, no action that will determine what will happen.  And when we go back to the definitions of free will and predestination at the top, we see that there is no free will allowed “all events are determined completely by previously existing causes”  aka this god.

Some Christians try their hardest to pretend that if their god knows who we will become out of free will, then his choice of us to allow us to accept him is free will.  However, this doesn’t work as soon as this god interferes in what we do.  As we see, this god made the choice before we existed to make choices, not the other way around, that this god made his choice after we existed.  That would be free will, and this god’s choice being dependent on *whatever* we did with no interference.

Again, predestination: all events are determined completely by previously existing causes. Free will: is the ability to choose between different possible courses of action unimpeded

The argument of the Christian only works if the bible is full of lies and this god never interferes.

“I believe that predestination and free will work together in ways that are both glorious and mysterious.”

Unsurprisingly, the Christian will claim that it’s “mysterious” at the end of it all. This is the default excuse when Christian fails.

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – an bit of a reminiscence and more good TrueChristian(tm) claims

A couple of years ago, I had a good time showing just how poorly a Christian named Lyle Duell was an apologist and TrueChristian(tm).  You can see that original post here.   Unsurprisingly, Lyle failed to support his claims and ran away.  So much for his “open” letter, eh?

I found yet another one of his posts about atheists and how he is the one TrueChristian(tm) and entertained myself by pointing out how he fails again.  He may thank me again for the publicity again, but given that no one follows his blog, I’m sure he is needing attention.  He’s still trying so very hard to convince people that only his version of his religion is the right one.   And his arguments are as poor as ever, he goes from claiming that it is okay that Christians don’t agree, to that Christians that don’t agree with him are cultists, a very silly analogy, and then this:

“The question arises then, which point of view could be called the truth?  The one based on sight, the one based on science or mathematical probability, the one based on personal experience (inhaling the air in the room) or touch?  It would be an interesting exercise to figure out which of the forms of knowledge would best reflect the human condition and best serve that condition.”

Hmmm, so we have hundreds of versions (conservatively) of Christianity which are all based on the same point of view, each Christian assumes that the good ol’ Holy Spirit tells them the one truth”.   None has any evidence of this.   Each Christian disbelieves the point of view of the others.

So the “interesting exercise” is answered that Christians have no knowledge and thus do not best serve any condition since it is all baseless opinion.

Not So Polite Dinner Conservation – more tasty conservative Christian stupidity

Well, we have “Red”, a complete idiot from somewhere around Tucson, Arizona.  He/she (I’ll default to he since most idiots like this are guys) appears to be one more ignorant conservative Christian who quotes G.K. Chesterton and does so incompetently thanks to the image that “Red” uses in their gravatar.

On this post, Red commented and wrote: “Was Hitler a tool of God? Yep. God let him crush apostate and atheistic nations. Then the US came in with prayer and sacrifice. then his dreams died, but he sent a half-million SS and Gestapo into the world. Most notably, the USSR took in close to half, and white Muslim nations many of the rest.

https://conservativecolloquium.wordpress.com/2008/12/14/hitlers-war-on-christianity-quotes/ shows his bigotry against Christianity. Private quotes on Mein Kamph shows he thought people who actually think he believed what he wrote are morons. Today, we have much antisemitism in liberal groups in the US.”

of course this is one of the stupidest things I’ve read in a while.  Red’s points are:

1.  Hitler was a tool…. I mean “tool” of Red’s version of the Christian god.

2.  Hitler was allowed by this god to “crush apostate and atheistic nations”.

3.  The US somehow defeated Nazi Germany by “prayer and sacrifice”.

4.  Somehow Hitler sent a half a million “SS and Gestapo into the world”

5. The USSR took in a lot of these and “white Muslim nations” took in many of the rest.

6.  Hitler hated Christianity.

7.  There are “private notes” that somehow disagree with all of what Mein Kampf says.

8.  No one is right about Hitler except Red.

9. Liberals in the US are anti-semitic.

So, to look through this idiocy, let’s consider each claim:

  1. Per Red, this god used Hitler to cause genocide against the Jews, homosexuals, the disabled, Roma, etc. But Red tries to accuse people for being anti-Semitic.  Exactly how is this god not anti-semitic?  Poor Red, too stupid to make a coherent argument.
  2. Hitler failed entirely in crushing anyone. And any country he invaded wasn’t an atheistic or apostate nation.  The closest one was the Soviet Union and they kicked Adolph’s ass.  I’m sure that poor Red would be horrified that the Night Witches, female pilots, helped.
  3. Many nations worked together to end Nazi Germany, more than the US. Poor Red has to lie to make himself feel special.  Sacrifice, and not prayer, is what worked.  Red is a pathetic liar.
  4. No evidence of this at all. And the US took a lot of Nazi rocket scientists in, so if Red wants to brag about not accepting Nazis, he’s a liar again.
  5. What the heck is a “white muslim nation”? it seems that Red is being stupid again, lying with no evidence to support him.
  6. Hitler was a Roman Catholic Christian. He repeatedly stated how he was this and how he hated the Jews because they killed Christ.  For his quotes about this, here you go.
  7. Poor Red, the website that he gave is a private one of a coward who doesn’t’ allow anyone to see his lies unless he approves. “This site is marked private by its owner. If you would like to view it, you’ll need permission from the site owner. Request an invite and we’ll send your username to the site owner for their approval.”
  8. Red must lie and fail just like so many other conservative Christians. He depends on lies that can be shown to be wrong.  Poor dear.
  9. No evidence for Red’s lies for this either. In fact, reality shows that Red is an incompetent liar since liberals are very much against anti-Semites like Trump’s “fine people”  g. wannabee nazis and confederates.

One more idiot in the conservative Christian ranks shown for what he is.  He’s done such a great job in showing that Christianity is crap.

What the Boss Likes – whomever made this wins the internet: Ivanka, the beans and They Live

This is the perfect take on the Ivanka with beans meme.  Don’t know who did it, but thank you!


This imagery is from They Live, a John Carpenter movie from 1988.  It is about an anyman, played by Roddy Piper (yes the wrestler), and him dealing with aliens who are corrupting humanity.   Considering how inhumane the Trumps are, thinking that they are aliens isn’t the most strange thing.

It’s really a good movie.  Give it a watch.

And get a copper scrubby to stick in your hat.

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – free will not working out well

I’ve been chatting with a pastor here.  It’s about free will and this is a good succinct discussion showing how free will fails pretty quickly for Christians. I’m expecting this all to vanish on his blog.

Here’s how things have been going (the pastor’s quotes are in italics):

“exactly how is it just to kill a child for the actions of its parents?”

“Isaiah 55:8-9
New King James Version
8 “For(A) My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” says the Lord.
9 “For(B) as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts.”

“I thought you might try that one. There is a problem with it. If good and evil are objective, and Christians claim that their morals are objective and come directly from this god, how is it that a human killing a child for no fault of their own is evil and a god doing it is good?

It seems you have a morality based on what something is and not the action. I’ve seen that in a lot of Christians, that they claim that this god can do anything it wants with its creations. That is no more than might equals right.”

God has a purpose for everything He does.

“that’s an excuse, Aldtric. How does free will for David’s son work when your god’s “purpose” eliminates it? Your claim of free will doesn’t work if your god can always deny it.

Add that to the fact that your god doesn’t support free will and it seems you’ve invented your own version of Christianity.”

His purpose doesn’t eliminate it. We still have to chose to pursue it. OUR God doesn’t force us to do anything. God knows what we will chose, but the choice is always ours. God used Judas for His purpose because of his choice to betray Yeshua.

“It does eliminate it. how does a dead child pursue its free will?

Your god has removed any choice at all from this dead child. Your god repeatedly forces people to do things. Joshua 11 is a great example. Shall I quote it again? “20 For it was the Lord’s doing to harden their hearts so that they would come against Israel in battle, in order that they might be utterly destroyed, and might receive no mercy, but be exterminated, just as the Lord had commanded Moses.” No choice or free will there.

Your god worked with Satan to get its plan to work per Luke. How does working with evil reflect on a supposedly good being? No blood sacrifice, no salvation.”

“Their hardened hearts were due to their unbelief. They chose not to believe in Him and He used that for His purpose. It’s no different than someone who decides they aren’t going to follow the rules on their job. That is a choice. Because of their choice their boss intervenes and fires them. Even though it wasn’t their ‘will’ to lose their job, their choice resulted in losing it. Or, if you have a child that refuses to take out the trash on their own, but after a while you force them to do it even though they don’t want to. They still had a choice to do it on their own.”

That’s quite a lie, Aldtrick since the bible says that this god hardened their hearts, not what you tried to claim.

Not a lie. He intervened and ‘hardened their hearts’ because of their ‘choice’ of unbelief. God is sovereign. He is free to intervene for His purpose at anytime. He also hardened Pharaoh’s heart, but it was because of his unbelief. He allowed Satan to enter into the heart of Judas because of his attitude, but it was still Judas’s choice.

and more lies. Nothing is said about this. You’ve made it up to excuse your god. Nice to see your claim for free will disintergrate, Aldtrick. If this god can intervene anytime, then there is no free will.

Also nice to see you admit your god had to work with satan.

I’m going to make it short and simple. Our vertical relationship with God is the same as our horizontal relationships with one another. God has given us free will to chose or reject Him. As we go about our lives, He intervenes from time-to-time based on that decision for His divine purpose. As parents our children have free will. Children make choices on their on, but sometimes parents intervene based on their choice to obey them.

Again, still no evidence of free will at all with a god that can negate it at any time. You try very hard to try to claim human relationships are the “same” as a relationship with a god. That’s very silly, Aldtric.

when you intervene with a child you limit their free will. If they cannot do what they want, then there is no free will. Just like if your god prevents people from doing what they want.

You are digging yourself in deeper.

One last comment…1 Corinthians 2:13-14
New King James Version
13 These things we also speak, not in words which man’s wisdom teaches but which the [a]Holy Spirit teaches, comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

and still more failure. Every Christian claims that the holy spirit tells them the “truth” and insists that any other Christian who claims the same thing is lying because they have no evidence.

You are again trying to claim that no one can “really” understand except you. That’s false. We see that all Christians do this since your claims don’t match.

addendum 7/16 at 7:57 PM EDT:

So much for a “last comment”

1 Corinthians 2:14
New King James Version
14 (A)But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

Yes, so you’ve said. And repeating verses from a failed set of books is not impressive. Paul failed, Aldtric. He lied and claimed that JC would be back soon, e.g. during Paul’s life. It’s always good to see a Christian following a false prophet.

Thanks for adding to the discussion. I expected your responses as much as you expected mine. I will be praying that God INTERVENES and softens your heart and give increase to any good seed that’s been planted in you and kill the bad. Seeds of faith in Him through Yeshua the Messiah, Seeds of repentance. Seeds of salvation and seeds of a lifetime of real relationship with Him and much good fruit. Be BLESSTIFIED

It’s always amusing to see Christians trying to pretend that their version is better with the attempts to use “Yeshua” rather than Joshua or Jesus.  If you really want cred, then use the Hebrew.

It’s great to see you trying again to try to pretend that your god’s interference with free will isn’t exactly that.  Intervene also means “ to interfere (come into collision or be in opposition) with the outcome or course especially of a condition or process”  You want your god to mind control me and surprise, that won’t happen.  Your prayers fail.  So, Aldtric, why would this be?  That your god loves an honest atheist?  That you aren’t a Christian? Or that your god doesn’t exist.  Your silly attempt to try to make a brand out of your religion is hilarious. Really, “blesstified”? Ii guess you don’t think that being blessed is enough.

God bless you 😀

And the failed attempt at a Parthian shot.

Which isn’t a parthian shot.

6 “Do not give dogs what is holy, and do not throw your pearls before pigs, lest they trample them underfoot and turn to attack you.

yep, and another excuse given when supposed omnipotent beings fail. Again, nice “One last comment…” Aldtric. Such a quote from JC, who speaks like any charlatan who fails. Like any pyschic or theist, your god suddenly is powerless: “5 And he could do no deed of power there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and cured them.” – Mark 6

Why is god so limited by disbelief?

Well, hopefully that is it (I did get a few more bible verses copy and pasted at me).  We’re back to Christians trying to be insulting.  But still no evidence for their claims.

Addendum 7/18/2020 7:23 EDT

I’m posting because you aren’t the only one who thinks this way. I want my blog to be a forum for discussion. However, I’m not going to keep going back and forth. I will leave you to your reasoning. However, I won’t continue to entertain you blasphemous comments. I have had God answer more prayers than I can count. I won’t begin to tell you about them because you will have another explanation. I do appreciate the fact that you have given me another person to lift up in prayer. I love you and want you to come to know the one and only LIVING GOD, Yah, Adonai, The Lord God of Israel from Eternity Past to Eternity Future, through our Lord and Savior Yeshua, the Messiah, the Lamb of God, the Son of God, the Living Word. I will be praying for you. I only ask that when you are converted, that you strengthen someone else. BE BLESSTIFIED!

I know you won’t keep going back and forth, Aldtric, since you have realized you have nothing.

You try to hide behind claims of “blasphemous comments”, when you can’t show your god exists to be upset. And your god seems to have no problem with what I say, having not smited me yet.

If it is true and you’ve had your version of your god “answer more prayers than you can count”, you are quite a selfish man since you’ve never prayed for anyone to be helped. We have kids with cancer, vets who suffered terrible amputations and brain injuries and surprise, Aldtric couldn’t be bothered to pray for them or this god to heal them.

Yep, you claim you are praying for me. Nothing happens and you failed, Aldtric. How about you pray for people who need it? But of course you won’t since you know that nothing will happen.

Not converted, and you are a false prophet when you claim something will happen. I assume you do know what your god thinks about people who lie and claim that they speak for him, right

 

I’ll keep updating to see just where this goes.  (well, I would but he collapsed in failure).

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – churches got covid bailout money showing that they are no more than frauds

Unsurprisingly, Christians lined up to get covid money for their churches. The Friendly Atheist has a good article on it here.   Now, it’ll be interesting to see if one sect will whine about the others that they hate getting money.  I’m guessing other religions also got the same money, so it’ll also be interesting if a mosque or a synagogue got any and if the conservative Christians will take a hissy fit.

They likely won’t, since they all are pigs at the same trough.  They do a great job of showing that their god does nothing at all and is indeed the imaginary sky fairy that it is.

The hypocrisy is of course apparent.  They don’t want to pay taxes, they don’t want gov’t interference but they want to legislate their lies into law and get money to help them when their god didn’t.

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – I think this bizarre Christian claim deserves a post of its own

My adversary on Kaleidoscope has come out with this curious thing as an answer to my comment “It is, of course, no surprise at all that our author here won’t answer these questions either: “For some reason this god wanted to keep humans ignorant of what good and evil are. Why? Your god wanted Hitler to do what he did, since Christians claim that *everything* is their god’s will. This god repeatedly uses horrible means to do what *it* wants, a completely selfish being. This god works with evil repeatedly, intentionally releasing Satan to corrupt the christians left after this god kills everyone else (Revelation 19-21). Is this a good act? one would hope you would say not.””

“Vel:

I’ll answer that last question. You throw so much out that it’s hard to answer it all. God wanted to keep humans “ignorant” of good and evil so he could become their good and evil. But in deciding to “become like God,” they can now make their own decisions about good and evil. Unfortunately, they do that with their limited understanding, and someone like Hitler arises, disobeying God’s commands at every turn, threatening the world, and still you blame God for what he did because God didn’t stop him. It is not selfish: it’s God allowing you and me and Hitler to have free will.

And I affirm that all God’s acts are good. He has warned us about the end of the world. It’s our choice to obey or not. Yes, I know. You don’t believe the God of the Bible allows us to have a choice. Another topic on which you and I disagree.

Have a nice day, Vel.”

This, in the most curious nutshell, is why I stand against religion, the acceptance of tyranny, harm and the spread of lies that it engenders.  The above claim is weirdly like Christian Gnosticism but from Bizarro World.

This was my response

Then answer what questions you want to answer, author.  I see you are trying yet more excuses. 

So, you say that “God wanted to keep humans “ignorant” of good and evil so he could become their good and evil.”
So, the good and evil that the fruit would give knowledge about isn’t the same as the actions of this god which wants to be a good and evil unto itself?   that’s what your claim means.  Wow.  And your god is evil too.  that’s interesting to know. 
Per your invented story, this god knows a good and evil that is not what he wants humans to know.  There is a good and evil beyond your god and humans now have the truth and we can see that your god isn’t quite what it claims.
I know the history of Hitler pretty well.  If you compare it to the actions of this god described in the bible, Hitler does what this god does and what this god wants.  Hitler was a Christian, author.  He cites the bible when this god claims that the Jews deserve death for not accepting this messiah. Per your bible, Jesus Christ says that anyone who doesn’t want him as king should be brought before him and killed (Luke 19).  yes, that’s part of a parable, and the parable is about Jesus being the king of kings.  You can offer another interpretation if you can come up with one. 
Again, no free will in the bible.  “20 For it was the Lord’s doing to harden their hearts so that they would come against Israel in battle, in order that they might be utterly destroyed, and might receive no mercy, but be exterminated, just as the Lord had commanded Moses.” – Joshua 11  another good example.  We don’t just disagree, author, you intentionally lie about what your bible says and I can support my position with chapter and verse. 
You claim you confirm that all of this god’s acts are good.  Your opinion is meaningless, coming from someone who would accept any action from this god.  If your claim is right, I know good and evil and I know your god is evil; I don’t accept its attempts to insist it is a good and evil separate from the good and evil from the tree. 

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – the continued failure of apologetics

I follow this particular Christian’s blog, The Kaleidoscope of Culture, which is a rather curious mix of apologetics and other things.  The author does occasionally write a reply to my comments but he consistently never actually replies to me in the comments, only putting his response in a separate comment. Thus, his replies go unanswered if I’m not actively looking for them.  it seems most curious that he chooses to try to obscure himself this way.

He recently had this post, The Limits of Apologetics, which is in effect an excuse why apologetics fail constantly.  As usual, excuses are given and questions are ignored by the apologist.  Here is my rebuttal of the original post  and then below, an rebuttal of the further excuses given.  As usual, the excuses given by a Christian dig them in deeper in to the morass of their contradictory nonsense.  One knows that as soon as a Christian mentions Hitler, it won’t end well for them.

So, to my questions: “We have claims of miracles, but funny how this god never does them where anyone but a believer can see. This god never allows a Christian to heal like the bible promises, no Christian goes to a pediatric cancer ward and clears it out. Why? Selfishness? Doubt?”

you answer “Neither of course, though perhaps doubt is one. But you know your Bible well enough that you should know the answer isn’t that simple. (Luke 4: 20 – 30; Mark 6: 1 – 6; Romans 8: 18 – 24; 2 Kings 13: 14; 1 Timothy 5: 23; 2 Cor 12: 9, John 16: 1 -33). As I said earlier, I wish I knew how best to help you.”

We have you “wishing” you could “help” me, but you have failed so far. Your bible has that this god will answer any request from one of its believers, so why does your “wish” aka prayer go unfulfilled? You say “neither” but you have no answer at all on what the reason supposedly is.

As for the answers, they are indeed that simple as we’ll see in the very verses you indicate, especially John 16. Nothing about why Christians like you fail to be able to do what the bible promises all baptized believes in christ can do. There are some pretty fine human excuses like the ones you use.

Let’s look at these various bible verses you want me to look at:

“20 And he rolled up the scroll, gave it back to the attendant, and sat down. The eyes of all in the synagogue were fixed on him. 21 Then he began to say to them, “Today this scripture has been fulfilled in your hearing.” 22 All spoke well of him and were amazed at the gracious words that came from his mouth. They said, “Is not this Joseph’s son?” 23 He said to them, “Doubtless you will quote to me this proverb, ‘Doctor, cure yourself!’ And you will say, ‘Do here also in your hometown the things that we have heard you did at Capernaum.’” 24 And he said, “Truly I tell you, no prophet is accepted in the prophet’s hometown. 25 But the truth is, there were many widows in Israel in the time of Elijah, when the heaven was shut up three years and six months, and there was a severe famine over all the land; 26 yet Elijah was sent to none of them except to a widow at Zarephath in Sidon. 27 There were also many lepers in Israel in the time of the prophet Elisha, and none of them was cleansed except Naaman the Syrian.” 28 When they heard this, all in the synagogue were filled with rage. 29 They got up, drove him out of the town, and led him to the brow of the hill on which their town was built, so that they might hurl him off the cliff. 30 But he passed through the midst of them and went on his way.” Luke 4: 20-30

This is such a classic excuse for a charlatan. That a charlatan can’t get away with lies to those who know them is obvious. Why does JC has to use such a classic excuse for why he fails? This doesn’t work very well with the common Christian claim that “everyone” knows about him and this god from Romans 1 and JC’s supposed own comments that his miracles are to be why people should believe in him. You can’t have it both ways. Either the miracles are believable or they aren’t. Your god, by default of its supposed attributes, can always make a believable miracle, being omnipotent and all. That it can’t and Christians are stuck with blaming humans and evidently the all-powerful strength of their disbelief, is telling.

“6 He left that place and came to his hometown, and his disciples followed him. 2 On the sabbath he began to teach in the synagogue, and many who heard him were astounded. They said, “Where did this man get all this? What is this wisdom that has been given to him? What deeds of power are being done by his hands! 3 Is not this the carpenter, the son of Mary and brother of James and Joses and Judas and Simon, and are not his sisters here with us?” And they took offense at him. 4 Then Jesus said to them, “Prophets are not without honor, except in their hometown, and among their own kin, and in their own house.” 5 And he could do no deed of power there, except that he laid his hands on a few sick people and cured them. 6 And he was amazed at their unbelief.” Mark 6

Same story, same nonsense. However, in this one, JC *can’t* do anything, just like a psychic who claims that they can read minds and offers the excuse that they can’t work in the presence of doubters. How convenient and how silly when JC and Christians claim that this god is omnipotent.

“18 I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us.” – Romans 8

Typical excuse of any charlatan who wants people to pay them now when they know nothing will happen and they have to get out of town. Paul was certain that JC would be back during his lifetime (Romans 8 “about to be revealed”, 1 Thessalonians 4 “that we who are alive, who are left until the coming of the Lord”), and Romans 13 “the day is at hand”). Paul died a false prophet. Christians now of course try to claim that ‘near’ doesn’t *really* mean near and ‘we’ doesn’t really mean ‘we’.

14 Now when Elisha had fallen sick with the illness of which he was to die, King Joash of Israel went down to him, and wept before him, crying, “My father, my father! The chariots of Israel and its horsemen!”” – 2 Kings 13

So, author, where does the OT have that believers in JC can do healing? Always interesting when a Christian runs to the OT that they ignore when convenient.

23 No longer drink only water, but take a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments.” – 1 Timothy 5

Paul showing that he has no idea he is supposed to be able to do miracles. It’s as if, hmmm, he has no idea what the gospels actually said or Acts or what the book of james claimed. Now, how could that be unless he never read the gospels? This would make sense since he knows precious little about JC’s supposed life.

but he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.”” – 2 Corinthians

Interesting for a man who supposedly did miracles per Acts saying this. It’s another classic excuse, that somehow that the lack of ability to do anything now has to be claimed as evidence of the ability to do something. This kind Christian has listed all of the times Jesus and Paul disagree: http://www.voiceofjesus.org/paulvsjesus.html

16 “I have said these things to you to keep you from stumbling. They will put you out of the synagogues. Indeed, an hour is coming when those who kill you will think that by doing so they are offering worship to God. And they will do this because they have not known the Father or me. But I have said these things to you so that when their hour comes you may remember that I told you about them.

“I did not say these things to you from the beginning, because I was with you. But now I am going to him who sent me; yet none of you asks me, ‘Where are you going?’ But because I have said these things to you, sorrow has filled your hearts. Nevertheless I tell you the truth: it is to your advantage that I go away, for if I do not go away, the Advocate] will not come to you; but if I go, I will send him to you. And when he comes, he will prove the world wrong about sin and righteousness and judgment: about sin, because they do not believe in me; 10 about righteousness, because I am going to the Father and you will see me no longer; 11 about judgment, because the ruler of this world has been condemned.

12 “I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. 13 When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own, but will speak whatever he hears, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. 14 He will glorify me, because he will take what is mine and declare it to you. 15 All that the Father has is mine. For this reason I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.

16 “A little while, and you will no longer see me, and again a little while, and you will see me.” 17 Then some of his disciples said to one another, “What does he mean by saying to us, ‘A little while, and you will no longer see me, and again a little while, and you will see me’; and ‘Because I am going to the Father’?” 18 They said, “What does he mean by this ‘a little while’? We do not know what he is talking about.” 19 Jesus knew that they wanted to ask him, so he said to them, “Are you discussing among yourselves what I meant when I said, ‘A little while, and you will no longer see me, and again a little while, and you will see me’? 20 Very truly, I tell you, you will weep and mourn, but the world will rejoice; you will have pain, but your pain will turn into joy. 21 When a woman is in labor, she has pain, because her hour has come. But when her child is born, she no longer remembers the anguish because of the joy of having brought a human being into the world. 22 So you have pain now; but I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy from you. 23 On that day you will ask nothing of me. Very truly, I tell you, if you ask anything of the Father in my name, he will give it to you. 24 Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete.

25 “I have said these things to you in figures of speech. The hour is coming when I will no longer speak to you in figures, but will tell you plainly of the Father. 26 On that day you will ask in my name. I do not say to you that I will ask the Father on your behalf; 27 for the Father himself loves you, because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God. 28 I came from the Father and have come into the world; again, I am leaving the world and am going to the Father.”

29 His disciples said, “Yes, now you are speaking plainly, not in any figure of speech! 30 Now we know that you know all things, and do not need to have anyone question you; by this we believe that you came from God.” 31 Jesus answered them, “Do you now believe? 32 The hour is coming, indeed it has come, when you will be scattered, each one to his home, and you will leave me alone. Yet I am not alone because the Father is with me. 33 I have said this to you, so that in me you may have peace. In the world you face persecution. But take courage; I have conquered the world!” – John 16

So here we have JC saying that anything asked for in his name will be given, no exceptions. Christians get upset with this part since they know that despite their prayers and asking for things in JC’s name, nothing happens. They must claim that this god has exceptions, which is based in nothing but their admission that the bible must be wrong. They must claim that there is some “greater” reason why they don’t get what they pray for when again, that has no basis in their bible. The apostles said this was plain to them as literally stated, no apologetics needed.

But modern Christian insist that their interpretations are what is right, not a literal reading.

It is, of course, no surprise at all that our author here won’t answer these questions either: “For some reason this god wanted to keep humans ignorant of what good and evil are. Why? Your god wanted Hitler to do what he did, since Christians claim that *everything* is their god’s will. This god repeatedly uses horrible means to do what *it* wants, a completely selfish being. This god works with evil repeatedly, intentionally releasing Satan to corrupt the christians left after this god kills everyone else (Revelation 19-21). Is this a good act? one would hope you would say not.”

These are the questions that Christians won’t answer.

Addendum:  Our author is evidently afraid of me since he claims that his family tells him to never meet me (I never asked).  I had to ask:

“I’m sorry you are so frightened of me that you had to make up things to tell your family so they would be frightened too. So exactly how many atheist women have done anything violent, and how many conservative Christians have? That your have no trust in your god is evident. What loving caring god would allow someone to harm its chosen? That’s a direct question, author. Will you answer it? You could have said to your son (“Dad, you don’t really know. She could be anyone!”) any of these things from your bible: https://www.openbible.info/topics/protection

Not So Polite Dinner Conversation – frustration and futility

I dreamt about dead crows last night.   I was in a parking lot where there was a crow that was black, red and blue. A child kicked it and I tried to help it but it died. Then I was back in my garden where there were more dead and dying crows.   My parents laughed at me for trying to help them.

Then Athena, one of our cats, decided that she needed to wake me up, chirping and nearly rolling off the bed.

Per some dream websites, dead crows are a sign of an enemy won over, but I love crows/ravens, pretty much as I love snow leopards. My husband, who has a talent at interpreting symbolism, says it could be that the crows were people of color and I was frustrated that I couldn’t help them.

I like this video

To a point, anyway. I don’t believe we were ever “great”.   At points, the country, in general, was better than it is now.

However…..

Americans committed atrocities repeatedly against the native humans here and in colonization attempts. The US gov’t ignores the treaties it agreed to. That still happens, witness the Standing Rock protests about water.

Slavery was accepted and a good part of the country decided that murdering their fellows for the “right” to own a human being was just a wonderful idea. And there are STILL have Americans who think this is fine.

Women weren’t recognized as human beings with their own rights for more than a hundred years. And there is still have no Equal Rights Amendment to the Constitution.

Many Americans just wanted to appease Hitler and other dictators as long as they weren’t bothered. Isolationists were rampant. A ridiculous number of Americans were Nazis and had summer camps about that crap in the US. So much for the “greatest generation” that had to be largely dragged into caring about the events around the world.

The police in the country default to violence in many situations because they aren’t taught any better and hiring is for those who follow orders, not those who think.

The willful ignorance and arrogance that drives the idea of exceptionalism, aka the “chosen people” is a poison. We advocate, we donate. And I wonder what’s the point sometimes? The dreams of frustration still plague me every night.