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Proof Of God II: Electric Boogaloo

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@reepicheep

 

Christianity is a descendant of Judaism, but the difference between them is that God is a Divine being that harshly judges those who disobey the teachings of the Old Testament, and the New Testament is that which Christians base their beliefs around, saying that God loved us enough that gave his Son so that we could be forgiven.

 

"Even besides the religions you mentioned, there are plenty of others with loving gods. Also, Jesus didn't fix our problems, he taught us what to do to be better people and he died on the cross to save us."

 

My point.

 

Also, what other major religions have a loving God to worship?

Yes, but, unless you belong to the minority (which would render this debate fairly useless but which I have nothing against), you probably believe that the God from the old testament is one and the same as the God from the new testament, which means that you suggest that the God that Jewish people is the same as the God you worship but also different. That is my issue with what you're saying there.

As for whether there are loving Gods in other religions, there are several problems with this. I would argue that there are, but love is not just one thing. You could argue that in the time of the old testament, God was not as close to His people as he is now, and that he had stricter laws, but that doesn't mean he is not loving. You could probably also argue that the Christian God is evil. It is extremely subjective.

 

To be quite honest, I find it distasteful and wrong that you would suggest that Christianity is the only religion with a loving God, because it's simply true and very, very difficult to argue. I mean no offense by this, but you can't make sweeping statements like that unless you have some hard evidence (which in this case is hard to get given the very subjective nature of love) for said statement.

 

What I was trying to say earlier is that the God of Judaism and the God of Christianity is different, despite the differences in behavior, as the God the Judaism seems less "loving."

 

"You could probably also argue that the Christian God is evil."

 

Howso?

 

Also, my argument is that all religions state that humanity itself has a problem, and then they each have a different way of fixing that problem. However, I've encountered no religion that says their god/God loved the people of earth enough to save them.

 

What other religions have a loving God?

 

@Anthem

 

If we know that all parts of the universe follow the laws of physics, (by observation) then why is the universe itself not considered to follow the laws of physics? This may be going in circles, but I don't understand. For example, if the law of entropy is true for all parts of the universe, does the universe not follow the law of entropy? I'm asking this because the laws of physics are not quantitative (not measured by numbers), but measured by their qualities.

And, like I said, the fact that God was perhaps more distant and strict in the old testament doesn't mean he was more loving. You can have a distant father who loves you very much, you may just not notice it. See what I'm saying?

As for arguments for God being evil (note that I don't agree with any of these, but they're examples of how you can argue that God is evil), here and here. Love and hate, good and evil, are incredibly subjective. You could say that while the consensus is that (Godwin's law!) Hitler is evil, but he may have perceived his acts as good. This also leads me to my next answer; yes, there are other religions with loving gods, since, as I just pointed out, love is very subjective. I think that you can argue that the Islamic god is loving to his people. You can argue the same for other religions, just as you can argue that the Christian God is evil.

 

Boy 0.0 those sources were full of fallacies and gaps.

 

I'm not disagreeing with you; I'm saying that Christianity (Judaism) is the only religion where there is a loving relationship between God and man. In the Islam religion very few people actually have a relationship with Allah and are more centered around getting to heaven. I'm sorry if I offend anyone, that is my knowledge of Islam and it is rather limited.

 

A Muslim's relationship with Allah is supposed to be quite strong. That's why they have the Five Pillars of Islam, including the apparently difficult Pilgrimage to Mecca (Hajj). Having said that, I don't think it's a very positive relationship; quite oppressive, actually (though one could argue that for any divine authority, as Hitchens did). I bought my self a copy of the Koran, and so far I have to say that I'm not at all struggling to see where extremists get their views from. In fact, to be a peaceful, "moderate" Muslim, you have to be dodging a lot of garbage that's in that "holy" book.

 

From what I've encountered, Muslims aren't really supposed to read the Koran. In my experience, it was similar to the corrupt Cathlic church: do as the religious leaders say and don't read the Bible.

 

Not quite. They're not supposed to question what they read. Children are often taught from a very early age to memorise the Koran at length (in many cases, the entire text). The rules may also be relative to the particular "school" of Islam (Shia, Sufi, Sunni).

Edited by Sykelig

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@reepicheep

 

Christianity is a descendant of Judaism, but the difference between them is that God is a Divine being that harshly judges those who disobey the teachings of the Old Testament, and the New Testament is that which Christians base their beliefs around, saying that God loved us enough that gave his Son so that we could be forgiven.

 

"Even besides the religions you mentioned, there are plenty of others with loving gods. Also, Jesus didn't fix our problems, he taught us what to do to be better people and he died on the cross to save us."

 

My point.

 

Also, what other major religions have a loving God to worship?

Yes, but, unless you belong to the minority (which would render this debate fairly useless but which I have nothing against), you probably believe that the God from the old testament is one and the same as the God from the new testament, which means that you suggest that the God that Jewish people is the same as the God you worship but also different. That is my issue with what you're saying there.

As for whether there are loving Gods in other religions, there are several problems with this. I would argue that there are, but love is not just one thing. You could argue that in the time of the old testament, God was not as close to His people as he is now, and that he had stricter laws, but that doesn't mean he is not loving. You could probably also argue that the Christian God is evil. It is extremely subjective.

 

To be quite honest, I find it distasteful and wrong that you would suggest that Christianity is the only religion with a loving God, because it's simply true and very, very difficult to argue. I mean no offense by this, but you can't make sweeping statements like that unless you have some hard evidence (which in this case is hard to get given the very subjective nature of love) for said statement.

 

What I was trying to say earlier is that the God of Judaism and the God of Christianity is different, despite the differences in behavior, as the God the Judaism seems less "loving."

 

"You could probably also argue that the Christian God is evil."

 

Howso?

 

Also, my argument is that all religions state that humanity itself has a problem, and then they each have a different way of fixing that problem. However, I've encountered no religion that says their god/God loved the people of earth enough to save them.

 

What other religions have a loving God?

 

@Anthem

 

If we know that all parts of the universe follow the laws of physics, (by observation) then why is the universe itself not considered to follow the laws of physics? This may be going in circles, but I don't understand. For example, if the law of entropy is true for all parts of the universe, does the universe not follow the law of entropy? I'm asking this because the laws of physics are not quantitative (not measured by numbers), but measured by their qualities.

And, like I said, the fact that God was perhaps more distant and strict in the old testament doesn't mean he was more loving. You can have a distant father who loves you very much, you may just not notice it. See what I'm saying?

As for arguments for God being evil (note that I don't agree with any of these, but they're examples of how you can argue that God is evil), here and here. Love and hate, good and evil, are incredibly subjective. You could say that while the consensus is that (Godwin's law!) Hitler is evil, but he may have perceived his acts as good. This also leads me to my next answer; yes, there are other religions with loving gods, since, as I just pointed out, love is very subjective. I think that you can argue that the Islamic god is loving to his people. You can argue the same for other religions, just as you can argue that the Christian God is evil.

 

Boy 0.0 those sources were full of fallacies and gaps.

 

I'm not disagreeing with you; I'm saying that Christianity (Judaism) is the only religion where there is a loving relationship between God and man. In the Islam religion very few people actually have a relationship with Allah and are more centered around getting to heaven. I'm sorry if I offend anyone, that is my knowledge of Islam and it is rather limited.

 

A Muslim's relationship with Allah is supposed to be quite strong. That's why they have the Five Pillars of Islam, including the apparently difficult Pilgrimage to Mecca (Hajj). Having said that, I don't think it's a very positive relationship; quite oppressive, actually (though one could argue that for any divine authority, as Hitchens did). I bought my self a copy of the Koran, and so far I have to say that I'm not at all struggling to see where extremists get their views from. In fact, to be a peaceful, "moderate" Muslim, you have to be dodging a lot of garbage that's in that "holy" book.

 

From what I've encountered, Muslims aren't really supposed to read the Koran. In my experience, it was similar to the corrupt Cathlic church: do as the religious leaders say and don't read the Bible.

 

Not quite. They're not supposed to question what they read. Children are often taught from a very early age to memorise the Koran at length (in many cases, the entire text). The rules may also be relative to the particular "school" of Islam (Shia, Sufi, Sunni).

<unsourced>

 

(This goes for the past few posts as well. I wish you all would expand your arguments, because it seems you're contradicting a lot of what I've learned, either through religious studies classes or through my own reading. I think you all may be suffering from a drastically short-sighted viewpoint. Furthurmore, the Koran is a very different text from the Bible, and if you go into it blind you're going to interpret it wrong. Make sure you know your background before digging any deeper... What bothers me the most though is how you present these "facts" about Islam as though they're different than any other religion. Children are taught to believe in God, Children are taught to memorize Bible verses, each sect as different policies and beliefs, the Bible is full of violence- much more so than the Koran. You may have unintentionally implied Islam is different than other religions, but it's really not...)

 

I think these are worth reading:

http://www.usislam.o...te_violence.htm

http://www.peacewith...had/jihad02.htm

 

Forgive me if I am mistaken, but I don't see how any of your comment could be directed at me. I made two comments on Islam:

1. "A Muslim's relationship with Allah is supposed to be quite strong. That's why they have the Five Pillars of Islam, including the apparently difficult Pilgrimage to Mecca (Hajj). Having said that, I don't think it's a very positive relationship; quite oppressive, actually (though one could argue that for any divine authority, as Hitchens did). I bought my self a copy of the Koran, and so far I have to say that I'm not at all struggling to see where extremists get their views from. In fact, to be a peaceful, "moderate" Muslim, you have to be dodging a lot of garbage that's in that "holy" book."

 

2. "Not quite. They're not supposed to question what they read. Children are often taught from a very early age to memorise the Koran at length (in many cases, the entire text). The rules may also be relative to the particular "school" of Islam (Shia, Sufi, Sunni)."

 

I also take religious studies classes, and all of the above (with the exception of my argument that belief in Allah is oppressive and the Koran is garbage and violent) is considered general knowledge (e.g. the Five Pillars stuff). I said, as you said, that children are taught the fundamentals of monotheistic religion. I partly agree that Islam is not all that different; I mean, all things considered, it is borrowed from Jewish and Christian myths anyway.

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Boy 0.0 those sources were full of fallacies and gaps.

 

I'm not disagreeing with you; I'm saying that Christianity (Judaism) is the only religion where there is a loving relationship between God and man. In the Islam religion very few people actually have a relationship with Allah and are more centered around getting to heaven. I'm sorry if I offend anyone, that is my knowledge of Islam and it is rather limited.

And the same could be said about most arguments for God being good; I'm not saying that the sources are right, but I'm just suggesting that not everything is black and white.

 

As for your second bit, the issue is not that you are wrong per se, but that you are judging the Islamic religion with limited knowledge of it. If you are going to argue that Muslims don't have a loving relationship with their god, be sure that you can back it up in some way.

From what I've encountered, Muslims aren't really supposed to read the Koran. In my experience, it was similar to the corrupt Cathlic church: do as the religious leaders say and don't read the Bible.

But there's a difference between a religion and its followers. I've encountered many Muslims who are very moderate and rarely read the Koran. That says nothing about Islam itself, just its followers. The same goes for Catholicism, and I think you're oversimplifying the issue the Catholic (and most churches) church has to deal with. That's a different debate though.

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@Anthem

 

If we know that all parts of the universe follow the laws of physics, (by observation) then why is the universe itself not considered to follow the laws of physics? This may be going in circles, but I don't understand. For example, if the law of entropy is true for all parts of the universe, does the universe not follow the law of entropy? I'm asking this because the laws of physics are not quantitative (not measured by numbers), but measured by their qualities.

 

It's not so much that the universe doesn't follow the laws of physics. It's that your attempt to justify the claim that anything outside of our reality follows the laws of physics is completely unfounded. You would need other supporting evidence because engaging in the fallacy of composition is faulty reasoning. It's not that I'm stating that your conclusion about the qualities of the universe (that it was created) is false, but rather that the way that you reached that conclusion is inherently flawed. You will need to provide more evidence (which likely cannot be done since we don't have access outside of our reality--assuming, of course, that "outside of our reality" exists).

 

With regard to the discussion about whether or not God is good: we have no epistemic access to the qualities of God. We merely have an idea formulated by a book (which was possibly constructed merely by humans who wished to create a fiction to support their religion) that the Christian God is good. We cannot make a claim about the goodness or badness of God, so one is equally justified (or perhaps, unjustified would be more accurate) in asserting that God is good or that God is evil.

 

It appears that this topic has gotten sidetracked again. Let us try to move forward on discussing the nature of proof for the existence (or non-existence) of God (or gods).

 

Considering the fact that our language (and all other languages) capture only those words which are adequately expressible in terms of the human notion of possibility (as is observable within our reality), does this not fundamentally limit us in understanding (or, at least, expressing) concepts that are beyond our understanding and imagination? For all we know, proving the existence of God could be a futile endeavor resulting from our inability to comprehend the feature of God (call it F) that allows him/her/it to act as the creator of the universe without needing to adhere to the same laws of nature that are observed within our reality. In other words, if God has feature F, God may not subject to the restrictions of existence and non-existence as we conceive of them in our reality. And in that case, is it really possible to prove that God exists? If we assume that God does have this feature F, why would he/she/it not have expressed it to us through the supposed medium of communication between God and humanity (the Bible, Quran, etc.)? In other words, why did he/she/it limit the communication of concepts that are outside of the realm of possibility and imagination to humans by administering his/her/its word through a language that is comprehensible by humans? If, as Christians (fundamentalist, at least) often express, the Bible is to be regarded as the literal interpretation of the word of God, and God has feature F that causes him/her/it not to adhere to our humanly concepts of existence and non-existence, then why did God not express this when he/she/it supposedly had the chance?

 

The essence of what I am trying to communicate is that we don't have epistemic access to God, and for all we know God could be a super-exister (being a concept that is fundamentally beyond our comprehension that is the same as existence but outside of our reality). When given the chance to communicate with us through a holy text (the Bible, Quran, etc.), he/she/it then communicates with us very humanistically (via a language that was developed by humans) without much reference to anything outside of the realm of imagination. These details seem to point at the fact that so-called holy texts are actually created by humankind.

 

Thus, if we discover that the holy texts are either man-made or false, does this cause us to reject the notion of God that was expressed by the religion? If, as many religious people do, we are to consider these texts as the proof for the existence of God (or gods), then does the rejection of the authenticity of these texts result in the rejection of God (or gods)?

 

Also, I wish to see whether anyone else has more to say on something I brought up earlier:

 

If we claim that God did not express the fact that he/she/it has feature F in his/her/its respective holy text, then a probable conclusion is that God intended for religious belief to be based upon faith (and that proof for the existence of God should not be required). However, in the event that proof for the existence of God is discovered, would that not undermine any religious beliefs based upon faith? How can a religion based upon faith and not proof reconcile the discovery of proof for the existence of God? To be a religion based upon faith (merely to avoid the necessity of gathering proof) and then to be faced with actual proof that God (or gods) exists is a contradiction that undermines religion based on faith.

 

Thoughts?

 

Edit: Replaced 'symbol Phi' with 'F'.

Edited by Anthem

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If we claim that God did not express the fact that he/she/it has feature ϕ in his/her/its respective holy text, then a probable conclusion is that God intended for religious belief to be based upon faith (and that proof for the existence of God should not be required). However, in the event that proof for the existence of God is discovered, would that not undermine any religious beliefs based upon faith? How can a religion based upon faith and not proof reconcile the discovery of proof for the existence of God? To be a religion based upon faith (merely to avoid the necessity of gathering proof) and then to be faced with actual proof that God (or gods) exists is a contradiction that undermines religion based on faith.

 

Thoughts?

If the bible is to be believed (I think it is), then God has shown himself to His people several times. In that sense, just because there are people who are faced with proof of God's existence doesn't mean they suddenly have issues believing, because the religion isn't necessarily based on faith. Why would knowing that God exists undermine a religion?

Another problem is that proof is a little bit subjective in this case. I can look at the beauty of nature and feel like it is proof for God, but other people may see proof for God elsewhere, or not at all. How can one conclusively prove God without Him actually showing up in 'person'?

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If we claim that God did not express the fact that he/she/it has feature ϕ in his/her/its respective holy text, then a probable conclusion is that God intended for religious belief to be based upon faith (and that proof for the existence of God should not be required). However, in the event that proof for the existence of God is discovered, would that not undermine any religious beliefs based upon faith? How can a religion based upon faith and not proof reconcile the discovery of proof for the existence of God? To be a religion based upon faith (merely to avoid the necessity of gathering proof) and then to be faced with actual proof that God (or gods) exists is a contradiction that undermines religion based on faith.

 

Thoughts?

If the bible is to be believed (I think it is), then God has shown himself to His people several times. In that sense, just because there are people who are faced with proof of God's existence doesn't mean they suddenly have issues believing, because the religion isn't necessarily based on faith. Why would knowing that God exists undermine a religion?

Another problem is that proof is a little bit subjective in this case. I can look at the beauty of nature and feel like it is proof for God, but other people may see proof for God elsewhere, or not at all. How can one conclusively prove God without Him actually showing up in 'person'?

 

By claiming that you think that the bible is to be believed you are telling me that your belief is based upon faith unless you have other evidence for believing that the bible ought to be believed. Thus, if presented with undeniable proof for the existence of God, it would be contradiction to claim that your religious belief is based upon faith and also to accept the undeniable proof for the existence of God. In other words, you can't have your cake and eat it too. You need to choose either proof or faith. It seems that you want to choose proof, but you have not proven that the bible ought to be believed.

 

Regardless, the reason why I brought up the bible is because God's communication with humankind took the form of a human language -- a decision that seems unfit for a deity. This is a small point, however, and slightly tangential.

 

I am agnostic with regard to God's existence. I think knowing whether or not God exists is impossible. If you agree with me on this point then you must also agree that religious belief is necessarily based upon faith (since proof is impossible).

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If we claim that God did not express the fact that he/she/it has feature ϕ in his/her/its respective holy text, then a probable conclusion is that God intended for religious belief to be based upon faith (and that proof for the existence of God should not be required). However, in the event that proof for the existence of God is discovered, would that not undermine any religious beliefs based upon faith? How can a religion based upon faith and not proof reconcile the discovery of proof for the existence of God? To be a religion based upon faith (merely to avoid the necessity of gathering proof) and then to be faced with actual proof that God (or gods) exists is a contradiction that undermines religion based on faith.

 

Thoughts?

If the bible is to be believed (I think it is), then God has shown himself to His people several times. In that sense, just because there are people who are faced with proof of God's existence doesn't mean they suddenly have issues believing, because the religion isn't necessarily based on faith. Why would knowing that God exists undermine a religion?

Another problem is that proof is a little bit subjective in this case. I can look at the beauty of nature and feel like it is proof for God, but other people may see proof for God elsewhere, or not at all. How can one conclusively prove God without Him actually showing up in 'person'?

 

By claiming that you think that the bible is to be believed you are telling me that your belief is based upon faith unless you have other evidence for believing that the bible ought to be believed. Thus, if presented with undeniable proof for the existence of God, it would be contradiction to claim that your religious belief is based upon faith and also to accept the undeniable proof for the existence of God. In other words, you can't have your cake and eat it too. You need to choose either proof or faith. It seems that you want to choose proof, but you have not proven that the bible ought to be believed.

 

Regardless, the reason why I brought up the bible is because God's communication with humankind took the form of a human language -- a decision that seems unfit for a deity. This is a small point, however, and slightly tangential.

 

I am agnostic with regard to God's existence. I think knowing whether or not God exists is impossible. If you agree with me on this point then you must also agree that religious belief is necessarily based upon faith (since proof is impossible).

Call me an idiot but I'm not seeing how being presented with proof would contradict your faith? Claiming that religious belief is based upon faith doesn't mean that once you have proof it's suddenly all null and void. Take religion to be a hypothesis, albeit one that requires more faith than science might. God appearing would only prove that hypothesis.

 

Also, why would written language be unfit for a deity? If a god would make itself known to us, it would only make sense that it uses a medium that is timeless, not to mention really the only good way of transferring it a few thousand years ago.

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Im supprised no one has brought up anything written by Rene Descartes, He basicly invent the basis for Western philosophy, and if you read about his six meditations, a lot of interesting ideas came to me after reading that. though it is kinda flawwed from being around 350 years old some of the key point sare really enlightening.

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Im supprised no one has brought up anything written by Rene Descartes, He basicly invent the basis for Western philosophy, and if you read about his six meditations, a lot of interesting ideas came to me after reading that. though it is kinda flawwed from being around 350 years old some of the key point sare really enlightening.

But what exactly do you want to add to the debate by that? I'm afraid I don't have the time to read Rene Descartes, and not every forumer will. What points are you trying to make?

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he

Im supprised no one has brought up anything written by Rene Descartes, He basicly invent the basis for Western philosophy, and if you read about his six meditations, a lot of interesting ideas came to me after reading that. though it is kinda flawwed from being around 350 years old some of the key point sare really enlightening.

But what exactly do you want to add to the debate by that? I'm afraid I don't have the time to read Rene Descartes, and not every forumer will. What points are you trying to make?

Rene approaches the thought of god using logic instead of dong the traditional "look in the bible, thats how god exists." i wish i could explain better, but even just the main points would take me a long time. You can find a quick summary on the wiki though.

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he

Im supprised no one has brought up anything written by Rene Descartes, He basicly invent the basis for Western philosophy, and if you read about his six meditations, a lot of interesting ideas came to me after reading that. though it is kinda flawwed from being around 350 years old some of the key point sare really enlightening.

But what exactly do you want to add to the debate by that? I'm afraid I don't have the time to read Rene Descartes, and not every forumer will. What points are you trying to make?

Rene approaches the thought of god using logic instead of dong the traditional "look in the bible, thats how god exists." i wish i could explain better, but even just the main points would take me a long time. You can find a quick summary on the wiki though.

 

René Descartes' meditations on philosophy essentially parrot a lot of what was said in the Medieval period by St. Augustine and St. Anselm. He provides two proofs for the existence of god (one being the all too familiar ontological argument and the other being a sort of cosmological/creation argument) that are both problematic and very characteristic of his time. To say the least they are dated and based upon axioms that most wouldn't be willing to accept.

 

@reepicheep

 

It's not so much that being presented with infallible proof contradicts one's faith. It's more that one whose position is based upon faith fundamentally approaches religion differently from one who bases his or her position on evidence. As it stands, religion has no basis in evidence. One ought not to accept this position as his or her religion would be completely unsupported. This woould be like trying to accept astrology as a science--it doesn't work. Instead, one seems to be restricted to accepting that religion is based upon faith because there doesn't seem to be evidence (at least, not in this thread) that such a god exists. If a proof for the existence of god came along that was irrefutable (if such a thing is even possible), then one would have to abandon the tradition that is already manifest within his or her religion to accept this proof. In other words, religion based on faith cannot prove that god exists. If god is proven to exist, then religion based on faith ceases to exist. Therefore, the current state of religion religion (based on faith) is valueless. I feel like I may be strawmanning religion or engaging in a false dichotomy here. I'm really just toying with some ideas here.

 

With regard to language, it just seems to convenient that a God would talk only about things that are within the conception of human understanding and disappear before relating anything else to us. It really just makes me skeptical, and this is honestly a small point in the big picture of things.

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the only disproof you need for Christianity is that today there are many active religions and not everyone is either a Christian or an atheist. If God exists and if God is just, then God would have made sure to make the only variables be Christian or non-Christian with no religious affiliation as this would be the logical decision if God is good (assuming God is the model of perfect logic). Otherwise you have people going to hell after they were raised Muslim/Hindu/Buddhist/atheist/etc and after being introduced to Christianity did not believe it simply due to their upbringing. That's a ton of people going to hell (billions) for not doing anything wrong, just not believing in Christianity. If God is good and logical, then God would have seen this problem and eliminated it somehow.

 

Or maybe not believing in Christianity isn't a ticket into hell, but then that brings up another problem as there is little point in believing in something without evidence that will result in no consequence for disbelief.

Edited by Clavius

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the only disproof you need for Christianity is that today there are many active religions and not everyone is either a Christian or an atheist. If God exists and if God is just, then God would have made sure to make the only variables be Christian or non-Christian with no religious affiliation as this would be the logical decision if God is good (assuming God is the model of perfect logic). Otherwise you have people going to hell after they were raised Muslim/Hindu/Buddhist/atheist/etc and after being introduced to Christianity did not believe it simply due to their upbringing. That's a ton of people going to hell for not doing anything wrong, just not believing in Christianity. If God is good and logical, then God would have seen this problem and eliminated it somehow.

One could say you just don't understand his logic. There have been many arguments made towards that point.

there are only two options that are logical for a good God, and I pointed them both out. both of them signify that there is little to no point in believing in Christianity.

 

option #1: God makes sure the only possible options are Christian/atheist (which is not the case)

 

option #2: People don't go to hell for disbelief (which results in little to no reason for belief without evidence)

 

I know someone might respond "but there is a third possible option", I haven't identified a third possible one after thinking about this topic a decent amount and I'm rather sure that one does not exist with our current status. If someone wants to present a third option, be my guest. Otherwise there is no third option at the moment. Also, unfalsifiable claims without evidence are not logical.

Edited by Clavius

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the only disproof you need for Christianity is that today there are many active religions and not everyone is either a Christian or an atheist. If God exists and if God is just, then God would have made sure to make the only variables be Christian or non-Christian with no religious affiliation as this would be the logical decision if God is good (assuming God is the model of perfect logic). Otherwise you have people going to hell after they were raised Muslim/Hindu/Buddhist/atheist/etc and after being introduced to Christianity did not believe it simply due to their upbringing. That's a ton of people going to hell for not doing anything wrong, just not believing in Christianity. If God is good and logical, then God would have seen this problem and eliminated it somehow.

One could say you just don't understand his logic. There have been many arguments made towards that point.

there are only two options that are logical for a good God, and I pointed them both out. both of them signify that there is little to no point in believing in Christianity.

 

option #1: God makes sure the only possible options are Christian/atheist (which is not the case)

 

option #2: People don't go to hell for disbelief (which results in little to no reason for belief without evidence)

 

I know someone might respond "but there is a third possible option", I haven't identified a third possible one after thinking about this topic a decent amount and I'm rather sure that one does not exist with our current status. If someone wants to present a third option, be my guest. Otherwise there is no third option at the moment. Also, unfalsifiable claims without evidence are not logical.

If you truly believe in what you say here, then your entire post is essentially useless because the very existence of God is an unfalsifiable claim without evidence. I realise you're not directly saying that it's wrong, but I'm assuming that by not logical you also mean not worth mentioning?

 

A third possible option is that you are looking at this far to simplistically; if there is a God as he is in the bible, then he is complex and his actions are far beyond mortal understanding. Just as a note concerning the going to hell part; it depends on the Christian you ask. Many are of the opinion that hell does not exist and is merely metaphorical. Beyond that, you shouldn't forget that (unless I remember incorrectly), there isn't anybody saying you are automatically going to hell by not believing in God; God decides such things.

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the only disproof you need for Christianity is that today there are many active religions and not everyone is either a Christian or an atheist. If God exists and if God is just, then God would have made sure to make the only variables be Christian or non-Christian with no religious affiliation as this would be the logical decision if God is good (assuming God is the model of perfect logic). Otherwise you have people going to hell after they were raised Muslim/Hindu/Buddhist/atheist/etc and after being introduced to Christianity did not believe it simply due to their upbringing. That's a ton of people going to hell for not doing anything wrong, just not believing in Christianity. If God is good and logical, then God would have seen this problem and eliminated it somehow.

One could say you just don't understand his logic. There have been many arguments made towards that point.

there are only two options that are logical for a good God, and I pointed them both out. both of them signify that there is little to no point in believing in Christianity.

 

option #1: God makes sure the only possible options are Christian/atheist (which is not the case)

 

option #2: People don't go to hell for disbelief (which results in little to no reason for belief without evidence)

 

I know someone might respond "but there is a third possible option", I haven't identified a third possible one after thinking about this topic a decent amount and I'm rather sure that one does not exist with our current status. If someone wants to present a third option, be my guest. Otherwise there is no third option at the moment. Also, unfalsifiable claims without evidence are not logical.

If you truly believe in what you say here, then your entire post is essentially useless because the very existence of God is an unfalsifiable claim without evidence. I realise you're not directly saying that it's wrong, but I'm assuming that by not logical you also mean not worth mentioning?

 

A third possible option is that you are looking at this far to simplistically; if there is a God as he is in the bible, then he is complex and his actions are far beyond mortal understanding. Just as a note concerning the going to hell part; it depends on the Christian you ask. Many are of the opinion that hell does not exist and is merely metaphorical. Beyond that, you shouldn't forget that (unless I remember incorrectly), there isn't anybody saying you are automatically going to hell by not believing in God; God decides such things.

People who are Christians don't say that belief in God is an unfalsifiable claim without evidence obviously, otherwise they wouldn't be Christians unless they want to believe in things that they think aren't true for some odd reason. By saying not logical I mean not valid, as a valid claim requires some kind of logical basis/premise which unfalsifiable claims without evidence are devoid of. they are just statements without any logic behind them.

 

God's actions being far beyond my understanding is using a variant of the god of the gaps fallacy, as you are saying that I cannot understand something so it must be true which is fallacious (a form of the argument from ignorance). You can say this for anything, but for other things it actually sounds absurd as it should, ex. "the man in the moon created the sky by methods far beyond your scientific comprehension, therefore his creating of the sky is logical".

 

I know that some Christians believe in no hell or even no purgatory, but most Christians should believe in hell if they really belong to the denominations that they say they belong in (Catholics, Evangelicals, more fundamental Protestant sects, etc). Disbelief in God with knowledge of Christianity is usually not stated by sects of Christianity as a way to go to hell, but is rather heavily emphasized by all of them to be true.

Edited by Clavius

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the only disproof you need for Christianity is that today there are many active religions and not everyone is either a Christian or an atheist. If God exists and if God is just, then God would have made sure to make the only variables be Christian or non-Christian with no religious affiliation as this would be the logical decision if God is good (assuming God is the model of perfect logic). Otherwise you have people going to hell after they were raised Muslim/Hindu/Buddhist/atheist/etc and after being introduced to Christianity did not believe it simply due to their upbringing. That's a ton of people going to hell for not doing anything wrong, just not believing in Christianity. If God is good and logical, then God would have seen this problem and eliminated it somehow.

One could say you just don't understand his logic. There have been many arguments made towards that point.

there are only two options that are logical for a good God, and I pointed them both out. both of them signify that there is little to no point in believing in Christianity.

 

option #1: God makes sure the only possible options are Christian/atheist (which is not the case)

 

option #2: People don't go to hell for disbelief (which results in little to no reason for belief without evidence)

 

I know someone might respond "but there is a third possible option", I haven't identified a third possible one after thinking about this topic a decent amount and I'm rather sure that one does not exist with our current status. If someone wants to present a third option, be my guest. Otherwise there is no third option at the moment. Also, unfalsifiable claims without evidence are not logical.

If you truly believe in what you say here, then your entire post is essentially useless because the very existence of God is an unfalsifiable claim without evidence. I realise you're not directly saying that it's wrong, but I'm assuming that by not logical you also mean not worth mentioning?

 

A third possible option is that you are looking at this far to simplistically; if there is a God as he is in the bible, then he is complex and his actions are far beyond mortal understanding. Just as a note concerning the going to hell part; it depends on the Christian you ask. Many are of the opinion that hell does not exist and is merely metaphorical. Beyond that, you shouldn't forget that (unless I remember incorrectly), there isn't anybody saying you are automatically going to hell by not believing in God; God decides such things.

People who are Christians don't say that belief in God is an unfalsifiable claim without evidence obviously, otherwise they wouldn't be Christians unless they want to believe in things that they think aren't true for some odd reason. By saying not logical I mean not valid, as a valid claim requires some kind of logical basis/premise which unfalsifiable claims without evidence are devoid of. they are just statements without any logic behind them.

 

God's actions being far beyond my understanding is using a variant of the god of the gaps fallacy, as you are saying that I cannot understand something so it must be true which is fallacious (a form of the argument from ignorance). You can say this for anything, but for other things it actually sounds absurd as it should, ex. "the man in the moon created the sky by methods far beyond your scientific comprehension, therefore his creating of the sky is logical".

 

I know that some Christians believe in no hell or even no purgatory, but most Christians should believe in hell if they really belong to the denominations that they say they belong in (Catholics, Evangelicals, more fundamental Protestant sects, etc). Disbelief in God with knowledge of Christianity is usually not stated by sects of Christianity as a way to go to hell, but is rather heavily emphasized by all of them to be true.

Hi, I'm a Christian, nice to meet you. (Sorry) Childish pokes aside, I'm a Christian and I don't see any issue in admitting that the existence of God is unfalsifiable and based on non-scientific claims; just because there's no evidence for it doesn't mean it's not true.

 

What I mean by saying that God is complex and his actions are beyond mortal understanding is that his reasoning is beyond it. You can try to apply logic to a deity, but wouldn't a deity generally be above logic?

 

As for saying that Christians should believe in something if they belong to a certain denomination, on the one hand I would agree with you, but here's the thing. These denominations are groups of mostly like-minded individuals. But because they're only mostly like-minded, they disagree on many things. I think that Catholicism is a good example of this, because a group as large as they are could not possibly all have the same opinion. Taking myself as an example, I identify myself as a member of the Liberated Reformed Church of the Netherlands, but I disagree with their stances on several things (mainly gay marriage, but also other things). If I wanted to join a church that had exactly the same ideas as I did I'd have to start my own church (the Christian Congregation of Bronies, I'd call it)

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the only disproof you need for Christianity is that today there are many active religions and not everyone is either a Christian or an atheist. If God exists and if God is just, then God would have made sure to make the only variables be Christian or non-Christian with no religious affiliation as this would be the logical decision if God is good (assuming God is the model of perfect logic). Otherwise you have people going to hell after they were raised Muslim/Hindu/Buddhist/atheist/etc and after being introduced to Christianity did not believe it simply due to their upbringing. That's a ton of people going to hell for not doing anything wrong, just not believing in Christianity. If God is good and logical, then God would have seen this problem and eliminated it somehow.

One could say you just don't understand his logic. There have been many arguments made towards that point.

there are only two options that are logical for a good God, and I pointed them both out. both of them signify that there is little to no point in believing in Christianity.

 

option #1: God makes sure the only possible options are Christian/atheist (which is not the case)

 

option #2: People don't go to hell for disbelief (which results in little to no reason for belief without evidence)

 

I know someone might respond "but there is a third possible option", I haven't identified a third possible one after thinking about this topic a decent amount and I'm rather sure that one does not exist with our current status. If someone wants to present a third option, be my guest. Otherwise there is no third option at the moment. Also, unfalsifiable claims without evidence are not logical.

If you truly believe in what you say here, then your entire post is essentially useless because the very existence of God is an unfalsifiable claim without evidence. I realise you're not directly saying that it's wrong, but I'm assuming that by not logical you also mean not worth mentioning?

 

A third possible option is that you are looking at this far to simplistically; if there is a God as he is in the bible, then he is complex and his actions are far beyond mortal understanding. Just as a note concerning the going to hell part; it depends on the Christian you ask. Many are of the opinion that hell does not exist and is merely metaphorical. Beyond that, you shouldn't forget that (unless I remember incorrectly), there isn't anybody saying you are automatically going to hell by not believing in God; God decides such things.

People who are Christians don't say that belief in God is an unfalsifiable claim without evidence obviously, otherwise they wouldn't be Christians unless they want to believe in things that they think aren't true for some odd reason. By saying not logical I mean not valid, as a valid claim requires some kind of logical basis/premise which unfalsifiable claims without evidence are devoid of. they are just statements without any logic behind them.

 

God's actions being far beyond my understanding is using a variant of the god of the gaps fallacy, as you are saying that I cannot understand something so it must be true which is fallacious (a form of the argument from ignorance). You can say this for anything, but for other things it actually sounds absurd as it should, ex. "the man in the moon created the sky by methods far beyond your scientific comprehension, therefore his creating of the sky is logical".

 

I know that some Christians believe in no hell or even no purgatory, but most Christians should believe in hell if they really belong to the denominations that they say they belong in (Catholics, Evangelicals, more fundamental Protestant sects, etc). Disbelief in God with knowledge of Christianity is usually not stated by sects of Christianity as a way to go to hell, but is rather heavily emphasized by all of them to be true.

Hi, I'm a Christian, nice to meet you. (Sorry) Childish pokes aside, I'm a Christian and I don't see any issue in admitting that the existence of God is unfalsifiable and based on non-scientific claims; just because there's no evidence for it doesn't mean it's not true.

 

What I mean by saying that God is complex and his actions are beyond mortal understanding is that his reasoning is beyond it. You can try to apply logic to a deity, but wouldn't a deity generally be above logic?

 

As for saying that Christians should believe in something if they belong to a certain denomination, on the one hand I would agree with you, but here's the thing. These denominations are groups of mostly like-minded individuals. But because they're only mostly like-minded, they disagree on many things. I think that Catholicism is a good example of this, because a group as large as they are could not possibly all have the same opinion. Taking myself as an example, I identify myself as a member of the Liberated Reformed Church of the Netherlands, but I disagree with their stances on several things (mainly gay marriage, but also other things). If I wanted to join a church that had exactly the same ideas as I did I'd have to start my own church (the Christian Congregation of Bronies, I'd call it)

I don't want to get away from the argument but something cannot be sound (logical) unless there is a reason why it is true. The theory of evolution is sound because it has a ton of evidence behind it. If Christianity doesn't have any backing or evidence, I don't see why it should be considered more than a hypothesis which is valid but unsound to believe in as believing in something without evidence is illogical (I would never believe that a teapot is located on one of Saturn's rings unless there is evidence that it does actually exist).

 

I've often been told that God is the model of perfect logic, so I don't see why I shouldn't apply logic to God's actions if everything God does is supposed to be without error and logical.

 

After growing up Catholic, I can definitely tell you that Catholicism requires you to believe in all of their main dogmas (the existence of hell being one of them). This is evidenced in multiple ways, the most obvious being that the Apostles Creed states that Jesus after his death "descended into hell". So that's 1.196 billion Christians who have to believe in hell or they aren't really Catholics. I'm sure Protestants have kind of the same thing, as Protestants have a deep history of belief in heaven and hell.

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the only disproof you need for Christianity is that today there are many active religions and not everyone is either a Christian or an atheist. If God exists and if God is just, then God would have made sure to make the only variables be Christian or non-Christian with no religious affiliation as this would be the logical decision if God is good (assuming God is the model of perfect logic). Otherwise you have people going to hell after they were raised Muslim/Hindu/Buddhist/atheist/etc and after being introduced to Christianity did not believe it simply due to their upbringing. That's a ton of people going to hell for not doing anything wrong, just not believing in Christianity. If God is good and logical, then God would have seen this problem and eliminated it somehow.

One could say you just don't understand his logic. There have been many arguments made towards that point.

there are only two options that are logical for a good God, and I pointed them both out. both of them signify that there is little to no point in believing in Christianity.

 

option #1: God makes sure the only possible options are Christian/atheist (which is not the case)

 

option #2: People don't go to hell for disbelief (which results in little to no reason for belief without evidence)

 

I know someone might respond "but there is a third possible option", I haven't identified a third possible one after thinking about this topic a decent amount and I'm rather sure that one does not exist with our current status. If someone wants to present a third option, be my guest. Otherwise there is no third option at the moment. Also, unfalsifiable claims without evidence are not logical.

If you truly believe in what you say here, then your entire post is essentially useless because the very existence of God is an unfalsifiable claim without evidence. I realise you're not directly saying that it's wrong, but I'm assuming that by not logical you also mean not worth mentioning?

 

A third possible option is that you are looking at this far to simplistically; if there is a God as he is in the bible, then he is complex and his actions are far beyond mortal understanding. Just as a note concerning the going to hell part; it depends on the Christian you ask. Many are of the opinion that hell does not exist and is merely metaphorical. Beyond that, you shouldn't forget that (unless I remember incorrectly), there isn't anybody saying you are automatically going to hell by not believing in God; God decides such things.

People who are Christians don't say that belief in God is an unfalsifiable claim without evidence obviously, otherwise they wouldn't be Christians unless they want to believe in things that they think aren't true for some odd reason. By saying not logical I mean not valid, as a valid claim requires some kind of logical basis/premise which unfalsifiable claims without evidence are devoid of. they are just statements without any logic behind them.

 

God's actions being far beyond my understanding is using a variant of the god of the gaps fallacy, as you are saying that I cannot understand something so it must be true which is fallacious (a form of the argument from ignorance). You can say this for anything, but for other things it actually sounds absurd as it should, ex. "the man in the moon created the sky by methods far beyond your scientific comprehension, therefore his creating of the sky is logical".

 

I know that some Christians believe in no hell or even no purgatory, but most Christians should believe in hell if they really belong to the denominations that they say they belong in (Catholics, Evangelicals, more fundamental Protestant sects, etc). Disbelief in God with knowledge of Christianity is usually not stated by sects of Christianity as a way to go to hell, but is rather heavily emphasized by all of them to be true.

Hi, I'm a Christian, nice to meet you. (Sorry) Childish pokes aside, I'm a Christian and I don't see any issue in admitting that the existence of God is unfalsifiable and based on non-scientific claims; just because there's no evidence for it doesn't mean it's not true.

 

What I mean by saying that God is complex and his actions are beyond mortal understanding is that his reasoning is beyond it. You can try to apply logic to a deity, but wouldn't a deity generally be above logic?

 

As for saying that Christians should believe in something if they belong to a certain denomination, on the one hand I would agree with you, but here's the thing. These denominations are groups of mostly like-minded individuals. But because they're only mostly like-minded, they disagree on many things. I think that Catholicism is a good example of this, because a group as large as they are could not possibly all have the same opinion. Taking myself as an example, I identify myself as a member of the Liberated Reformed Church of the Netherlands, but I disagree with their stances on several things (mainly gay marriage, but also other things). If I wanted to join a church that had exactly the same ideas as I did I'd have to start my own church (the Christian Congregation of Bronies, I'd call it)

I don't want to get away from the argument but something cannot be sound (logical) unless there is a reason why it is true. The theory of evolution is sound because it has a ton of evidence behind it. If Christianity doesn't have any backing or evidence, I don't see why it should be considered more than a hypothesis which is valid but unsound to believe in as believing in something without evidence is illogical (I would never believe that a teapot is located on one of Saturn's rings unless there is evidence that it does actually exist).

 

I've often been told that God is the model of perfect logic, so I don't see why I shouldn't apply logic to God's actions if everything God does is supposed to be without error and logical.

 

After growing up Catholic, I can definitely tell you that Catholicism requires you to believe in all of their main dogmas (the existence of hell being one of them). This is evidenced in multiple ways, the most obvious being that the Apostles Creed states that Jesus after his death "descended into hell". So that's 1.196 billion Christians who have to believe in hell or they aren't really Catholics. I'm sure Protestants have kind of the same thing, as Protestants have a deep history of belief in heaven and hell.

Actually, that is far from true. In a recent census, it turned out that there are actually a fairly high amount of people (who are protestant) who don't believe in hell. I don't remember exact figures, but I do remember they were high. If I weren't lazy I'd look them up :P

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After growing up Catholic, I can definitely tell you that Catholicism requires you to believe in all of their main dogmas (the existence of hell being one of them). This is evidenced in multiple ways, the most obvious being that the Apostles Creed states that Jesus after his death "descended into hell". So that's 1.196 billion Christians who have to believe in hell or they aren't really Catholics. I'm sure Protestants have kind of the same thing, as Protestants have a deep history of belief in heaven and hell.

Dogma and practice are two different things entirely.

how do you practice belief in hell?

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After growing up Catholic, I can definitely tell you that Catholicism requires you to believe in all of their main dogmas (the existence of hell being one of them). This is evidenced in multiple ways, the most obvious being that the Apostles Creed states that Jesus after his death "descended into hell". So that's 1.196 billion Christians who have to believe in hell or they aren't really Catholics. I'm sure Protestants have kind of the same thing, as Protestants have a deep history of belief in heaven and hell.

Dogma and practice are two different things entirely.

how do you practice belief in hell?

It's a colloquialism paraphrasing what Reepicheep and I have been saying for the past few posts.

 

Just because people don't believe everything that Catholic dogma states doesn't mean they're not Catholic: that is an oversimplification of belief. This is common in Christianity and all belief models. Most Christians do not agree with 100% of the dogma of their sect; that does not mean they don't believe in their sect's values and beliefs. Just because someone thinks premarital sex is okay doesn't mean they're not a Catholic. It only means they don't agree with 100% of Catholic doctrine.

 

Another example (though somewhat tenuous, admittedly): you can be a patriotic American and disapprove of the wars in the Middle East.

that is different and actually is a large part of Catholic teachings and their importance. There are 3 levels of importance for Catholic teachings. The first is divinely revealed truth, which is infallible and regarded as a must for all Catholics to believe (the Holy Trinity, Jesus's Resurrection, etc). The second is infallible Church teaching, which is also infallible but instead of being divinely revealed the teachings were created by the Magisterium/Pope (all true Roman Catholics should agree with these things, examples are being against abortion/euthanasia, priests only being males, etc). The third category is teachings on faith and morals, which are fallible however the Church takes formal positions on these things (open to self judgement more, some things like this are prayer of the rosary every week, service to others being required, etc). I can't remember if hell is divinely revealed or infallible based on being set up by councils/popes, but it definitely is infallible and a part of being a Catholic.

 

the disapproval of the wars in the Middle East would be more like disagreeing with a fallible teaching of the Catholic church, while protesting against the wars and being arrested for this would be like disagreeing with an infallible teaching of the Catholic Church (metaphorically speaking of course).

 

Actually, that is far from true. In a recent census, it turned out that there are actually a fairly high amount of people (who are protestant) who don't believe in hell. I don't remember exact figures, but I do remember they were high. If I weren't lazy I'd look them up :P

by saying more fundamentalist protestant sects I mean Calvinists, Anabaptists, and other related groups (classical Protestants I guess you can say). I know there is a large percentage of modern Protestants who don't believe in hell Edited by Clavius

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After growing up Catholic, I can definitely tell you that Catholicism requires you to believe in all of their main dogmas (the existence of hell being one of them). This is evidenced in multiple ways, the most obvious being that the Apostles Creed states that Jesus after his death "descended into hell". So that's 1.196 billion Christians who have to believe in hell or they aren't really Catholics. I'm sure Protestants have kind of the same thing, as Protestants have a deep history of belief in heaven and hell.

Dogma and practice are two different things entirely.

how do you practice belief in hell?

It's a colloquialism paraphrasing what Reepicheep and I have been saying for the past few posts.

 

Just because people don't believe everything that Catholic dogma states doesn't mean they're not Catholic: that is an oversimplification of belief. This is common in Christianity and all belief models. Most Christians do not agree with 100% of the dogma of their sect; that does not mean they don't believe in their sect's values and beliefs. Just because someone thinks premarital sex is okay doesn't mean they're not a Catholic. It only means they don't agree with 100% of Catholic doctrine.

 

Another example (though somewhat tenuous, admittedly): you can be a patriotic American and disapprove of the wars in the Middle East.

that is different and actually is a large part of Catholic teachings and their importance. There are 3 levels of importance for Catholic teachings. The first is divinely revealed truth, which is infallible and regarded as a must for all Catholics to believe (the Holy Trinity, Jesus's Resurrection, etc). The second is infallible Church teaching, which is also infallible but instead of being divinely revealed the teachings were created by the Magisterium/Pope (all true Roman Catholics should agree with these things, examples are being against abortion/euthanasia, priests only being males, etc). The third category is teachings on faith and morals, which are fallible however the Church takes formal positions on these things (open to self judgement more, some things like this are prayer of the rosary every week, service to others being required, etc). I can't remember if hell is divinely revealed or infallible based on being set up by councils/popes, but it definitely is infallible and a part of being a Catholic.

 

the disapproval of the wars in the Middle East would be more like disagreeing with a fallible teaching of the Catholic church, while protesting against the wars and being arrested for this would be like disagreeing with an infallible teaching of the Catholic Church (metaphorically speaking of course).

 

Actually, that is far from true. In a recent census, it turned out that there are actually a fairly high amount of people (who are protestant) who don't believe in hell. I don't remember exact figures, but I do remember they were high. If I weren't lazy I'd look them up :P

by saying more fundamentalist protestant sects I mean Calvinists, Anabaptists, and other related groups (classical Protestants I guess you can say). I know there is a large percentage of modern Protestants who don't believe in hell

 

And yet Catholics that don't believe in every single one of those things is still a Catholic.

The same goes for modern Protestants. My denomination has plenty of stances on plenty of things, and I disagree with many of them. That doesn't mean I'm not part of that denomination.

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After growing up Catholic, I can definitely tell you that Catholicism requires you to believe in all of their main dogmas (the existence of hell being one of them). This is evidenced in multiple ways, the most obvious being that the Apostles Creed states that Jesus after his death "descended into hell". So that's 1.196 billion Christians who have to believe in hell or they aren't really Catholics. I'm sure Protestants have kind of the same thing, as Protestants have a deep history of belief in heaven and hell.

Dogma and practice are two different things entirely.

how do you practice belief in hell?

It's a colloquialism paraphrasing what Reepicheep and I have been saying for the past few posts.

 

Just because people don't believe everything that Catholic dogma states doesn't mean they're not Catholic: that is an oversimplification of belief. This is common in Christianity and all belief models. Most Christians do not agree with 100% of the dogma of their sect; that does not mean they don't believe in their sect's values and beliefs. Just because someone thinks premarital sex is okay doesn't mean they're not a Catholic. It only means they don't agree with 100% of Catholic doctrine.

 

Another example (though somewhat tenuous, admittedly): you can be a patriotic American and disapprove of the wars in the Middle East.

that is different and actually is a large part of Catholic teachings and their importance. There are 3 levels of importance for Catholic teachings. The first is divinely revealed truth, which is infallible and regarded as a must for all Catholics to believe (the Holy Trinity, Jesus's Resurrection, etc). The second is infallible Church teaching, which is also infallible but instead of being divinely revealed the teachings were created by the Magisterium/Pope (all true Roman Catholics should agree with these things, examples are being against abortion/euthanasia, priests only being males, etc). The third category is teachings on faith and morals, which are fallible however the Church takes formal positions on these things (open to self judgement more, some things like this are prayer of the rosary every week, service to others being required, etc). I can't remember if hell is divinely revealed or infallible based on being set up by councils/popes, but it definitely is infallible and a part of being a Catholic.

 

the disapproval of the wars in the Middle East would be more like disagreeing with a fallible teaching of the Catholic church, while protesting against the wars and being arrested for this would be like disagreeing with an infallible teaching of the Catholic Church (metaphorically speaking of course).

 

Actually, that is far from true. In a recent census, it turned out that there are actually a fairly high amount of people (who are protestant) who don't believe in hell. I don't remember exact figures, but I do remember they were high. If I weren't lazy I'd look them up :P

by saying more fundamentalist protestant sects I mean Calvinists, Anabaptists, and other related groups (classical Protestants I guess you can say). I know there is a large percentage of modern Protestants who don't believe in hell

I know what Catholic doctrine states, and it doesn't matter. If you identify as Catholic, you are Catholic. Maybe a better example would be someone who was born in Germany but immigrated to the United States and gets dual citizenship. If they identify as American, then they're American. If they identify as German, they're German.

yes, but again you brought up a big distinction. You can be a Patriotic American (Catholic Christian) or you can just be an American (Christian). Catholic Christians are only Catholic Christians if they agree with Catholic beliefs, just like Patriotic Americans are only nationalistic if they agree with American positions and laws. If someone has a problem with hell existing, then this person won't be a Catholic Christian just as if someone has a problem with official stances on wars in the middle east this person won't be a patriotic American.

 

There are some people who just take the title of Catholic because it makes them happy or fit in, but these people really aren't Catholics. I know that there are a good amount of these people, but I seriously doubt that they make up even the majority of Catholic adherents. So you still have hundreds of millions of people who believe in hell that are Catholics alone.

 

I recognize that my point only works for Christians who believe in hell, but it still invalidates their religious beliefs. Again, for people who don't believe in hell, why should anyone bother believing in Christianity if there is no consequence against it and you can't demonstrate it as true?

Edited by Clavius

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After growing up Catholic, I can definitely tell you that Catholicism requires you to believe in all of their main dogmas (the existence of hell being one of them). This is evidenced in multiple ways, the most obvious being that the Apostles Creed states that Jesus after his death "descended into hell". So that's 1.196 billion Christians who have to believe in hell or they aren't really Catholics. I'm sure Protestants have kind of the same thing, as Protestants have a deep history of belief in heaven and hell.

Dogma and practice are two different things entirely.

how do you practice belief in hell?

It's a colloquialism paraphrasing what Reepicheep and I have been saying for the past few posts.

 

Just because people don't believe everything that Catholic dogma states doesn't mean they're not Catholic: that is an oversimplification of belief. This is common in Christianity and all belief models. Most Christians do not agree with 100% of the dogma of their sect; that does not mean they don't believe in their sect's values and beliefs. Just because someone thinks premarital sex is okay doesn't mean they're not a Catholic. It only means they don't agree with 100% of Catholic doctrine.

 

Another example (though somewhat tenuous, admittedly): you can be a patriotic American and disapprove of the wars in the Middle East.

that is different and actually is a large part of Catholic teachings and their importance. There are 3 levels of importance for Catholic teachings. The first is divinely revealed truth, which is infallible and regarded as a must for all Catholics to believe (the Holy Trinity, Jesus's Resurrection, etc). The second is infallible Church teaching, which is also infallible but instead of being divinely revealed the teachings were created by the Magisterium/Pope (all true Roman Catholics should agree with these things, examples are being against abortion/euthanasia, priests only being males, etc). The third category is teachings on faith and morals, which are fallible however the Church takes formal positions on these things (open to self judgement more, some things like this are prayer of the rosary every week, service to others being required, etc). I can't remember if hell is divinely revealed or infallible based on being set up by councils/popes, but it definitely is infallible and a part of being a Catholic.

 

the disapproval of the wars in the Middle East would be more like disagreeing with a fallible teaching of the Catholic church, while protesting against the wars and being arrested for this would be like disagreeing with an infallible teaching of the Catholic Church (metaphorically speaking of course).

 

Actually, that is far from true. In a recent census, it turned out that there are actually a fairly high amount of people (who are protestant) who don't believe in hell. I don't remember exact figures, but I do remember they were high. If I weren't lazy I'd look them up :P

by saying more fundamentalist protestant sects I mean Calvinists, Anabaptists, and other related groups (classical Protestants I guess you can say). I know there is a large percentage of modern Protestants who don't believe in hell

I know what Catholic doctrine states, and it doesn't matter. If you identify as Catholic, you are Catholic. Maybe a better example would be someone who was born in Germany but immigrated to the United States and gets dual citizenship. If they identify as American, then they're American. If they identify as German, they're German.

yes, but again you brought up a big distinction. You can be a Patriotic American (Catholic Christian) or you can just be an American (Christian). Catholic Christians are only Catholic Christians if they agree with Catholic beliefs, just like Patriotic Americans are only nationalistic if they agree with American positions and laws. If someone has a problem with hell existing, then this person won't be a Catholic Christian just as if someone has a problem with official stances on wars in the middle east this person won't be a patriotic American.

 

There are some people who just take the title of Catholic because it makes them happy or fit in, but these people really aren't Catholics. I know that there are a good amount of these people, but I seriously doubt that they make up the majority of Catholic adherents. So you still have hundreds of millions of people who believe in hell that are Catholics alone.

 

I know that my point only works for Christians who believe in hell, but it still invalidates their religious beliefs. Again, for people who don't believe in hell, why should anyone bother believing in Christianity if there is no consequence against it and you can't demonstrate it as true?

We're just going in circles here.

 

Anyway, I think that the entire patriotism comparison is inherently flawed because you have to actually define patriotism. Why aren't you patriotic if you're against the war because the war is bad for America?

 

I would agree that Christians who are only Christians in name are technically not Christians, but it's completely irrelevant to this debate because whether or not you believe in hell, you're a Christian. I think that you'd find that if you took a survey of all people who identified themselves as Catholics and actually practiced it, you'd find a very wide range of opinions on everything.

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After growing up Catholic, I can definitely tell you that Catholicism requires you to believe in all of their main dogmas (the existence of hell being one of them). This is evidenced in multiple ways, the most obvious being that the Apostles Creed states that Jesus after his death "descended into hell". So that's 1.196 billion Christians who have to believe in hell or they aren't really Catholics. I'm sure Protestants have kind of the same thing, as Protestants have a deep history of belief in heaven and hell.

Dogma and practice are two different things entirely.

how do you practice belief in hell?

It's a colloquialism paraphrasing what Reepicheep and I have been saying for the past few posts.

 

Just because people don't believe everything that Catholic dogma states doesn't mean they're not Catholic: that is an oversimplification of belief. This is common in Christianity and all belief models. Most Christians do not agree with 100% of the dogma of their sect; that does not mean they don't believe in their sect's values and beliefs. Just because someone thinks premarital sex is okay doesn't mean they're not a Catholic. It only means they don't agree with 100% of Catholic doctrine.

 

Another example (though somewhat tenuous, admittedly): you can be a patriotic American and disapprove of the wars in the Middle East.

that is different and actually is a large part of Catholic teachings and their importance. There are 3 levels of importance for Catholic teachings. The first is divinely revealed truth, which is infallible and regarded as a must for all Catholics to believe (the Holy Trinity, Jesus's Resurrection, etc). The second is infallible Church teaching, which is also infallible but instead of being divinely revealed the teachings were created by the Magisterium/Pope (all true Roman Catholics should agree with these things, examples are being against abortion/euthanasia, priests only being males, etc). The third category is teachings on faith and morals, which are fallible however the Church takes formal positions on these things (open to self judgement more, some things like this are prayer of the rosary every week, service to others being required, etc). I can't remember if hell is divinely revealed or infallible based on being set up by councils/popes, but it definitely is infallible and a part of being a Catholic.

 

the disapproval of the wars in the Middle East would be more like disagreeing with a fallible teaching of the Catholic church, while protesting against the wars and being arrested for this would be like disagreeing with an infallible teaching of the Catholic Church (metaphorically speaking of course).

 

Actually, that is far from true. In a recent census, it turned out that there are actually a fairly high amount of people (who are protestant) who don't believe in hell. I don't remember exact figures, but I do remember they were high. If I weren't lazy I'd look them up :P

by saying more fundamentalist protestant sects I mean Calvinists, Anabaptists, and other related groups (classical Protestants I guess you can say). I know there is a large percentage of modern Protestants who don't believe in hell

I know what Catholic doctrine states, and it doesn't matter. If you identify as Catholic, you are Catholic. Maybe a better example would be someone who was born in Germany but immigrated to the United States and gets dual citizenship. If they identify as American, then they're American. If they identify as German, they're German.

yes, but again you brought up a big distinction. You can be a Patriotic American (Catholic Christian) or you can just be an American (Christian). Catholic Christians are only Catholic Christians if they agree with Catholic beliefs, just like Patriotic Americans are only nationalistic if they agree with American positions and laws. If someone has a problem with hell existing, then this person won't be a Catholic Christian just as if someone has a problem with official stances on wars in the middle east this person won't be a patriotic American.

 

There are some people who just take the title of Catholic because it makes them happy or fit in, but these people really aren't Catholics. I know that there are a good amount of these people, but I seriously doubt that they make up the majority of Catholic adherents. So you still have hundreds of millions of people who believe in hell that are Catholics alone.

 

I know that my point only works for Christians who believe in hell, but it still invalidates their religious beliefs. Again, for people who don't believe in hell, why should anyone bother believing in Christianity if there is no consequence against it and you can't demonstrate it as true?

We're just going in circles here.

 

Anyway, I think that the entire patriotism comparison is inherently flawed because you have to actually define patriotism. Why aren't you patriotic if you're against the war because the war is bad for America?

 

I would agree that Christians who are only Christians in name are technically not Christians, but it's completely irrelevant to this debate because whether or not you believe in hell, you're a Christian. I think that you'd find that if you took a survey of all people who identified themselves as Catholics and actually practiced it, you'd find a very wide range of opinions on everything.

says we are going in circles then proceeds to go back to original points whilst ignoring mine...

 

you aren't patriotic/a nationalist if you don't support the actions of leaders/government, that is what I am saying. it is kind of a bad analogy because there is only one possible thing to be patriotic for as there is only one government, but ignoring this it kind of makes sense I suppose. I really don't think you would classify someone who was against the Vietnam war at the time as a patriotic American, the same goes for the prior example.

Edited by Clavius

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