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Richard Dawkins: A Gift From God

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  • seer
    replied
    Originally posted by JimL View Post
    Because its a silly argument seer. To argue that any action taken in the natural world is unnatural is just silly. Your argument is not about what is unnatural, it is about what is immoral. The Christian argument, your argument, is that we inherited a sinful nature, or unnatural nature if you like, because our ancient parents, i.e. A+E, sinned, or acted unnaturally. Correct? Well if that be the case, then please explain what was it that caused A+E to sin, or act unnaturally?
    It is not a silly argument according to my worldview Jim. And when I see Adam, I will personally ask for you, why he so misused his gift of freedom. But the main point is that there are unnatural acts, acts that violate what we were created for.


    No, you can throw religion into the mix as well. Their so called wickedness was that they were of a different religion, worshiped a different God, and occupied land and property that the terrorists wanted for themselves.
    First you simply do not know your history. Take the Amalekites, they attacked the Hebrews from day one after crossing of the Sea of Reeds. They were a deeply wicked people, they would even sacrifice their own children.

    By that reasoning we would be justified, according to your sense of morality, in exterminating a whole people, men, women and children because of the tribe, or nation, or culture they were born to and live under. Besides that, your religion argues that we are all wicked. Remember, we inherited a sin nature. So how can you justify the singling out one certain group for extermination when we are all sinners
    We actually I think it would be perfectly just to kill all the members of Isis - don't you agree? When groups like the Amalekites or Isis wantonly attack the innocent, then yes, like a cancer they need to be cut out.


    Of course, so long as you attribute it to God you can justify that which you would otherwise consider to be immoral.
    There you go again. Considered immoral by whom? You? You are joking - right?


    I would argue that survival is really the only thing that matters from the religious perspective. If God and a promised afterlife didn't exist, the God worshipers sense of morality goes right out the window.

    There is nothing special about the religious view regarding evil. People, including atheists have a moral sense of right and wrong, and find something really wrong with evil acts just as do you seer. But again, the Christian view is that both good and bad are in keeping with our nature. Remember we inherited it from A+E. Where they inherited it from I can't say!
    We are back to the big picture Jim. If your worldview is correct then nothing, even killing in the name of religion is unnatural. And it would only be subjectively wrong - not objectively wrong. If I am correct there really is something wrong in the world, something unnatural, something that violates the purpose for which we were created.

    Leave a comment:


  • JimL
    replied
    Originally posted by seer View Post
    What does that have to do with my answer?
    Because its a silly argument seer. To argue that any action taken in the natural world is unnatural is just silly. Your argument is not about what is unnatural, it is about what is immoral. The Christian argument, your argument, is that we inherited a sinful nature, or unnatural nature if you like, because our ancient parents, i.e. A+E, sinned, or acted unnaturally. Correct? Well if that be the case, then please explain what was it that caused A+E to sin, or act unnaturally?




    Well then what happened in scripture was not genocide by your definition since the destruction of those peoples was not based on race or nationality, but on their deeply wicked acts.
    No, you can throw religion into the mix as well. Their so called wickedness was that they were of a different religion, worshiped a different God, and occupied land and property that the terrorists wanted for themselves.
    By that reasoning we would be justified, according to your sense of morality, in exterminating a whole people, men, women and children because of the tribe, or nation, or culture they were born to and live under. Besides that, your religion argues that we are all wicked. Remember, we inherited a sin nature. So how can you justify the singling out one certain group for extermination when we are all sinners

    No Jim, you don't understand Scripture. It was their wickedness that brought the wrath of God down on their heads. And if God did order these actions then they were lawful.
    Of course, so long as you attribute it to God you can justify that which you would otherwise consider to be immoral.

    And that is my point, if men were not wicked and cruel these judgments of God would not have been necessary. God created men to love Him and their neighbors and when we deviate from that purpose we get into trouble. In your world the evolutionary process created us to be both cruel and kind. Both are perfectly natural, the only thing that matters is survival - no matter how you get there.
    I would argue that survival is really the only thing that matters from the religious perspective. If God and a promised afterlife didn't exist, the God worshipers sense of morality goes right out the window.
    The bottom line Jim, is that in your worldview everything that man does, both good and bad are in keeping with their nature. Just animals doing what animals do. In my worldview there is something really wrong with evils acts - they violate the purpose for which we were created.
    There is nothing special about the religious view regarding evil. People, including atheists have a moral sense of right and wrong, and find something really wrong with evil acts just as do you seer. But again, the Christian view is that both good and bad are in keeping with our nature. Remember we inherited it from A+E. Where they inherited it from I can't say!

    Leave a comment:


  • Sparko
    replied
    Come on guys! You are not being fair to JimL! You are using 3rd Grade Logic on someone who has clearly not moved beyond the pre-school level.

    Leave a comment:


  • jpholding
    replied
    Originally posted by rogue06 View Post
    A bit about the Nazi's and Christianity especially wrt Hitler
    Mostly correct. If I may...

    Hitler had contempt for Christianity but that did not stop him from trying to use it to support his wicked agenda. like many politicians both past and present Hitler spoke out of both sides of his mouth and invoked God's name in order to gain support.
    Definitely the latter but not as much the former (both sides of his mouth). By adhering to Positive Christianity he was able to make those professions genuinely; the problem was more that he purposely left out a lot about what he believed in his public speeches. But Gill is absolutely correct about his goals with the churches. That's why Positive Christianity ignored doctrine.

    In the same year he is supposed to have told Hermann Rauschnig that he intended "to stamp out Christianity root and branch."
    Probably not. Rauschning is an extremely unreliable source. Historians reject him almost universally. Speer's quote is more likely to be genuine; he's not entirely trusted, but is more trusted when what he says isn't self-serving.

    "I'll make these damned parsons feel the power of the state in a way they would have never believed possible. For the moment, I am just keeping my eye upon them: if I ever have the slightest suspicion that they are getting dangerous, I will shoot the lot of them. This filthy reptile raises its head whenever there is a sign of weakness in the State, and therefore it must be stamped on. We have no sort of use for a fairy story invented by the Jews."
    Actually from Table Talk, it seems, not Bullock. You noted TT can be unreliable, and indeed it should be used with caution, for several reasons; among them is that that they reflect a time after Hitler had had his fill of trying to bring the churches into line. It would not necessarily have reflected the vehemence of what he believed earlier. (On the side it's not unreliable for the reasons Carrier thinks it is. )
    You might find this, The Nazi Master Plan: The Persecution of the Christian Churches put together by the Office of Strategic Services (OSS), the predecessor of the CIA, an interesting read.
    Yes, an excellent source. I would recommend Holy Reich by Steigmann-Gall, Aryan Jesus by Heschel, and Twisted Cross by Doris Bergen.

    Leave a comment:


  • seer
    replied
    Originally posted by JimL View Post
    What it says is that the only things that we can know to be true are those things which have been proven to be true by science.
    Can you prove your above belief is true using science?

    Leave a comment:


  • seer
    replied
    Originally posted by JimL View Post
    Then free will, according to your hypothesis is unnatural?
    What does that have to do with my answer?



    You are confusing genocide with war. Genocide is simply the systematic extermination of a people because of their race or nationality. But as a Christian, and as you have admitted in the your quote below, you can not categorically object to genocide, I do.
    Well then what happened in scripture was not genocide by your definition since the destruction of those peoples was not based on race or nationality, but on their deeply wicked acts.

    If you agree with the cases of genocide as presented in the Bible, then you believe that genocide, so long as it is your genocide, is natural. Btw, the israelites were killing for their own selfish ends even though they did it in the name of God. You can not call what is good bad and what is bad good or what is natural unnatural and what is unnatural natural. Your argument is that what is a good or natural act or a bad and unnatural act is dependent upon whether God commands you to carry it out or not. In other words killing is unnatural, unless God commands you to do it wherein it becomes natural, genocide is wrong and unnatural, unless God commands you to do it wherein it becomes natural.
    No Jim, you don't understand Scripture. It was their wickedness that brought the wrath of God down on their heads. And if God did order these actions then they were lawful. And that is my point, if men were not wicked and cruel these judgments of God would not have been necessary. God created men to love Him and their neighbors and when we deviate from that purpose we get into trouble. In your world the evolutionary process created us to be both cruel and kind. Both are perfectly natural, the only thing that matters is survival - no matter how you get there.

    The bottom line Jim, is that in your worldview everything that man does, both good and bad are in keeping with their nature. Just animals doing what animals do. In my worldview there is something really wrong with evils acts - they violate the purpose for which we were created.
    Last edited by seer; 09-02-2014, 07:19 AM.

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  • Apologiaphoenix
    replied
    Originally posted by JimL View Post
    Science says nothing of the kind. What it says is that the only things that we can know to be true are those things which have been proven to be true by science.
    No. Science says nothing like this. Some people say science says this, but this is something science has not established and cannot establish.

    Science is the only means to proof. In other words you can claim or believe certain things to be true, but you can not prove it without science.
    Can you prove this with science?

    I don't think this even makes sense.
    I'm not surprised....

    Leave a comment:


  • JimL
    replied
    Originally posted by Apologiaphoenix View Post
    Scientism says the only things that are true are those that are determined by science.
    Science says nothing of the kind. What it says is that the only things that we can know to be true are those things which have been proven to be true by science.
    To say science is the only means to truth is scientism and an insult to science.
    Science is the only means to proof. In other words you can claim or believe certain things to be true, but you can not prove it without science.
    Evolution doesn't matter a bit to it. You can deny scientism and be an evolutionist. It's not a problem. Scientism is more of a philosophical and metaphysical position.
    I don't think this even makes sense.

    Leave a comment:


  • JimL
    replied
    Originally posted by seer View Post
    Than you Jim, that is the exact position the atheist must take. The Christian however doesn't since we believe that we were created for a purpose, our natural state as image bearers of God requires a different set of behaviors. Of course sin and willful rebellion has marred that natural state so we only see a faint glimpse of the love and goodness we should be displaying.
    Then free will, according to your hypothesis is unnatural?



    That is just silly. What the Europeans did to the Native Americans may well in fact have served the interests of humanity by creating the most innovated country in the history of man. But the thing is, you could never see down the road - you could never know if a particular behavior well have future good effects or bad. You can not categorically object to genocide.
    You are confusing genocide with war. Genocide is simply the systematic extermination of a people because of their race or nationality. But as a Christian, and as you have admitted in the your quote below, you can not categorically object to genocide, I do.


    That is false. Christian do not think that genocide is good. In the two or three cases in the Old Testament where God wiped out a people group that certainly was good, those groups were extremely wicked. And God offered an extreme response. That was a righteous judgment, completely unlike what men do, who kill for their own selfish ends.
    If you agree with the cases of genocide as presented in the Bible, then you believe that genocide, so long as it is your genocide, is natural. Btw, the israelites were killing for their own selfish ends even though they did it in the name of God. You can not call what is good bad and what is bad good or what is natural unnatural and what is unnatural natural. Your argument is that what is a good or natural act or a bad and unnatural act is dependent upon whether God commands you to carry it out or not. In other words killing is unnatural, unless God commands you to do it wherein it becomes natural, genocide is wrong and unnatural, unless God commands you to do it wherein it becomes natural.

    Leave a comment:


  • Apologiaphoenix
    replied
    Scientism says the only things that are true are those that are determined by science. To say science is the only means to truth is scientism and an insult to science.

    Evolution doesn't matter a bit to it. You can deny scientism and be an evolutionist. It's not a problem. Scientism is more of a philosophical and metaphysical position.

    Leave a comment:


  • seer
    replied
    Originally posted by JimL View Post
    Anything that we have the ability to do, and do, is natural seer, if it weren't we would not have the ability to do it. Immoral acts are no less natural than moral act.
    Than you Jim, that is the exact position the atheist must take. The Christian however doesn't since we believe that we were created for a purpose, our natural state as image bearers of God requires a different set of behaviors. Of course sin and willful rebellion has marred that natural state so we only see a faint glimpse of the love and goodness we should be displaying.


    If that included genocide yes, but it does not so that is a moot point. The murder of innocent civilians which is what genocide amounts to doesn't serve the interests of humanity.
    That is just silly. What the Europeans did to the Native Americans may well in fact have served the interests of humanity by creating the most innovated country in the history of man. But the thing is, you could never see down the road - you could never know if a particular behavior well have future good effects or bad. You can not categorically object to genocide.

    Actually the Christian position, in defense of their actions in obedience to their God, is that genocide is good. Thats not my position, it is yours!
    That is false. Christian do not think that genocide is good. In the two or three cases in the Old Testament where God wiped out a people group that certainly was good, those groups were extremely wicked. And God offered an extreme response. That was a righteous judgment, completely unlike what men do, who kill for their own selfish ends.

    Leave a comment:


  • shunyadragon
    replied
    I am curious how one distinguishes friend 'Science' from the enemy 'Scientism.' The following ' tongue and cheek' from the reference is sort of a 'mine field' not clearly separating 'Science form 'Scientism'

    Source: [url

    http://deeperwaters.wordpress.com/20...gift-from-god/][/url] None of this is to knock science. No one should want to. Science is our friend. Scientism is our enemy. The putting of science in the supreme place as the supreme guide to knowledge is also our enemy. It is no desire to belittle scientific knowledge, or any knowledge for that matter. It is a desire instead to deal with the practical worship of science.

    © Copyright Original Source



    Methodological Naturalism is the foundation of science, and Philosophical Naturalism represents the metaphysical atheist belief. As far as the actual science, there is no difference between Methodological and Philosophical Naturalism. From the reference I can only conclude that the question is in the area of application of science and not science itself, but there are other problems with making this distinction among Christians.

    How does the Theory of Evolution come into play concerning the accusation of the evils of Scientism? Many, about 40%+ Christians consider ToE false and Scientism, and even equate it with the evil of Dawkins and atheism.

    Bottom line question: Is the accusation of 'Scientism' a criticism of the application of science, or something wrong with nature of science itself?
    Last edited by shunyadragon; 09-01-2014, 09:11 AM.

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  • JimL
    replied
    Originally posted by seer View Post
    No Jim, I meant what I said. They are not natural - it is not natural for man to act this way. We were not created or intended to do these things.
    Anything that we have the ability to do, and do, is natural seer, if it weren't we would not have the ability to do it. Immoral acts are no less natural than moral act.


    And if that includes genocide then that is perfectly natural, and good, if it is in the best interest of the survival of our group.
    If that included genocide yes, but it does not so that is a moot point. The murder of innocent civilians which is what genocide amounts to doesn't serve the interests of humanity.


    The only thing that is moral or immoral in your world is what is good or bad for survival. So if genocide helps your group to survive then it is good.
    Actually the Christian position, in defense of their actions in obedience to their God, is that genocide is good. Thats not my position, it is yours!

    Leave a comment:


  • seer
    replied
    Originally posted by JimL View Post
    Well actually they are perfectly natural acts whether God exists or not. I'm assuming that what you meant to say is that without God they are not what we would call immoral acts, and that because morality is purely subjective. But God is not necessary for moral objectivity, the enviroment determines moral objectivity with regards to our survival not us, so morality is objective in that sense. Thats why we see a difference between murder and killing, the former being immoral, the latter not necessarily so.
    No Jim, I meant what I said. They are not natural - it is not natural for man to act this way. We were not created or intended to do these things.

    No, we are acting according to the laws that we have discovered through evolution to be in our best overall interests for survival.
    And if that includes genocide then that is perfectly natural, and good, if it is in the best interest of the survival of our group.

    They are perfectly natural, yes, they are not perfectly moral which term defines what is in our own best interests as a species for survival. Morality has to do with survival and peace in this world not ultimate justice in the next. If there were no God or next world, we would still develop a moral code by which to better survive and live in peace in this world.
    The only thing that is moral or immoral in your world is what is good or bad for survival. So if genocide helps your group to survive then it is good.

    Leave a comment:


  • JimL
    replied
    Originally posted by seer View Post
    No Jim, it is that and more. If there is no God then things like murder, rape, genocide, etc... are perfectly natural acts.
    Well actually they are perfectly natural acts whether God exists or not. I'm assuming that what you meant to say is that without God they are not what we would call immoral acts, and that because morality is purely subjective. But God is not necessary for moral objectivity, the enviroment determines moral objectivity with regards to our survival not us, so morality is objective in that sense. Thats why we see a difference between murder and killing, the former being immoral, the latter not necessarily so.

    We are just acting as the evolutionary process created us to act (like when chimpanzees murder each other).
    No, we are acting according to the laws that we have discovered through evolution to be in our best overall interests for survival.
    Not so in the Christian worldview. We were never intended or created to act this way, as a matter of fact it violates our nature as God's image bearers. This is what sin does. There is a serious deviation in man's nature, in your world these evils are perfectly natural.
    They are perfectly natural, yes, they are not perfectly moral which term defines what is in our own best interests as a species for survival. Morality has to do with survival and peace in this world not ultimate justice in the next. If there were no God or next world, we would still develop a moral code by which to better survive and live in peace in this world.
    Last edited by JimL; 08-31-2014, 07:03 AM.

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