Is the Bible simply a book?

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Postby ryguy » Thu Apr 03, 2008 3:09 pm

Chorlton wrote:Nope I see someone running for an excuse


I'll try again.

Look at my first post in this forum:

Considering the sensitive nature of this subject matter, there will be much tighter controls on attacks and insensitive or derogatory remarks toward other members related to their spiritual beliefs within this forum.


If someone comes in HERE, the spirituality and religion forum, and claims that they believe they met an alien, I'd leave them alone.

You know why? Because they're admitting that it's a religious/spiritual belief.

I'm sorry you don't comprehend the difference.

P.S. - read that quote a few times before you click "reply" again.

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Postby ScaRZ » Thu Apr 03, 2008 3:28 pm

Chorlton wrote:You are, therefore YOU provide the proof he exists or consider your argument destroyed.


The thing is Chorlton I never consider my belief in God as an attempt to argue.
If you are happy in your non-belief that's up to you. It has nothing to do with me and the path I choose to walk. I don't believe you are harming me and I'm certainly not harming you.

I'm not here trying to make you believe anything. Even if I attempted such a thing,it would be impossible.

Until God draws you it is not possible to know God. I believe that every person who has ever been born into this world has had that light of God shine upon them. I myself see it as an inner voice speaking to your heart. What one chooses to do with the drawing of God has nothing to do with anyone else. Seeds can be planted by others,but whether those seeds grow is out of their hands. It still comes down to a one on one encounter.

You can place any kind of label you want on me and it will never make an ounce of difference to me. I am who I am,and will never be anyone else. You Chorlton are who you are and your path is a journey you choose.

Can I prove there is God to you Chorlton if God has not?.......No!
As scripture says,"And ye shall seek me, and find [me], when ye shall search for me with all your heart."
It's not up to me to seek out your heart anymore than you mine. You must seek out your own heart,I can't do it for you.
I again quote scripture one more time,"Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you."
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Postby Chorlton » Thu Apr 03, 2008 3:35 pm

ryguy wrote:
Chorlton wrote:Nope I see someone running for an excuse


I'll try again.

Look at my first post in this forum:

Considering the sensitive nature of this subject matter, there will be much tighter controls on attacks and insensitive or derogatory remarks toward other members related to their spiritual beliefs within this forum.


If someone comes in HERE, the spirituality and religion forum, and claims that they believe they met an alien, I'd leave them alone.
You know why? Because they're admitting that it's a religious/spiritual belief.


But surely many 'Believers' will consider what they have seen is spiritual or religious but should that totally exclude them from questioning?
I say no.
I'm sorry you don't comprehend the difference.


Oh I do. Im sorry you have a closed mind on the matter and use rules and regulations as a get out
P.S. - read that quote a few times before you click "reply" again.
-Ry

Once again you denigrate my comprehension.
I see no reason why any belief ,spiritual or religious shouldnt be questioned, especially when it is being postulated as a taken fact.

Now lets discuss that collection of David Cassidy and The Partridge Family albums that you have secreted away shall we.?
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Postby ryguy » Thu Apr 03, 2008 5:11 pm

grrr...stupid brain. Can't turn it off. I'm tired of the old, tired, gnostic charge that the apostles were "copycats" - so I spent my lunchtime to offer you this:

Click here to read the full scholar debate

"The subsequent course of scholarship has effectively dismantled many of the conclusions drawn by the History-of-Religions School. Various studies have demonstrated that there was not one coherent gnostic redeemer myth nor was there a common mystery-religion theology. We have already touched on the fact that Judaism was not the syncretistic religion that some scholars once thought that it was. Now most scholars are reluctant to assume that Gnosticism even existed during the genesis and early development of Christianity.



Sorry Gnostics.... lol

"The majority of scholars are reaffirming the essential Jewishness of the early Christian movement. The background of various Christian rites, ideas and terms is being illustrated out of the OT and Judaism, in contrast to the previous generation that pointed to gnostic texts and the mystery religions. The background of the Christian practice of baptism, for instance, is now seldom traced to the mystery initiation sacraments of Attis, Adonis or Osiris but to the OT initiation rite of circumcision and the Jewish water purification rituals.

"Gunkel, Bultmann and others clearly undervalued the formative influence of the OT and Judaism for early Christianity. Neither were they sufficiently open to the possibility that the NT writers could use religious language shared by adherents of other religions without adopting the full meaning of that language, as it was understood in other religious contexts. In other words, Christian writers could use the term mystery (e.g., Rev 10:7; Ign. Magn. 9.1; Diogn. 4.6) without implying that Christianity is a mystery religion like the cults of Cybele or Mithras. John could use the image of light (1 Jn 1:5, 7; 2:8, 9, 10) without dependence on a gnostic light-darkness dualism. Both of these terms have long histories of usage in the OT that provide us with the essential conceptual framework for understanding their NT usage. Yet at the same time they are terms that would communicate in a Gentile world, albeit now with a different set of connotations.

"There is also evidence that the apostles and leaders in the early Christian movement made explicit and earnest attempts to resist the syncretistic impulses of the age.
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Postby You Can Call Me Ray » Thu Apr 03, 2008 8:57 pm

ryguy wrote:grrr...stupid brain. Can't turn it off. I'm tired of the old, tired, gnostic charge that the apostles were "copycats" - so I spent my lunchtime to offer you this:


That's fine, Ry. But I notice you still cannot (and never will be able to) refute that they WERE copycats when it came to instilling the birth of Jesus with the "virgin birth" myth. No matter how hard you try, there is NO evidence to support it and there were PLENTY of myths before Christ that had the same (fantastics) storyline.

:)
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Postby uberarcanist » Thu Apr 03, 2008 10:23 pm

Ray, you're way above "debating" like that. You, out of all people, should know that most things are impossible to prove in the negative, such as "proving that Christians didn't rip off earlier traditions".

For shame.
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Postby You Can Call Me Ray » Thu Apr 03, 2008 11:29 pm

uberarcanist wrote:Ray, you're way above "debating" like that. You, out of all people, should know that most things are impossible to prove in the negative, such as "proving that Christians didn't rip off earlier traditions".

For shame.


Please tell me exactly what you mean, as I do not see it. I have stated there is no evidence to support a claim that Christ was born of a virgin. And furthermore, I have shown historical evidence that other people (prior to the Christian era beginning) DID, in fact, tell tales of their "man-gods" having been born from virgins. (also sans-evidence)

So where, exactly, have I asked anyone to prove a negative? I was simply asking for evidence to support a Christian claim to Christ's virgin origins.

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Postby ryguy » Fri Apr 04, 2008 12:14 am

You Can Call Me Ray wrote:So where, exactly, have I asked anyone to prove a negative? I was simply asking for evidence to support a Christian claim to Christ's virgin origins.

Ray


Read at the link above - Luke's earliest testimony, for starters. And before you repeat the old arguments that other apostle's didn't write anything about it - again, read the link above as well as the never-ending ongoing debate scholars are having about it even today.

What you consider to be a cut-and-dry conclusion that the early apostles "stole" the virgin birth "mythology" is not a cut-and-dry conclusion at all.

In offering that Luke and Matthew were simply "stealing" earlier virgin birth mythology - you are demanding that I prove that they weren't stealing the story.

Did you know that the apostle Luke was originally a doctor? It's true. If anyone should know how to quantify a birth as a "virgin" one - he should....don't you think? lol

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Postby You Can Call Me Ray » Fri Apr 04, 2008 1:21 am

ryguy wrote:In offering that Luke and Matthew were simply "stealing" earlier virgin birth mythology - you are demanding that I prove that they weren't stealing the story.


Absolutely not! You are misinterpreting what I am saying. I am demanding no such thing that you prove they were not stealing the story. I am saying that this is MY conjecture, and that of many other (non-Christian) scholars. And the stories that support this conjecture are evidence that are well-documented in the myths of history that pre-date Christianity.

Rather, what I am demanding is that you provide evidence that the claim Christ was born of a virgin is true. Please don't try to mix this up. It is very clear. The Christian claim is Christ was born of a virgin. Hence, that claim must be supported by evidence. Nowhere have I asked you to prove the NT authors did NOT steal the story. Nowhere. I'm a bit insulted that you would try to pin this on me.

Did you know that the apostle Luke was originally a doctor? It's true. If anyone should know how to quantify a birth as a "virgin" one - he should....don't you think? lol


Red herring...unless you are also claiming that Luke was the doctor who examined and verified Mary's virginity. I don't think you are claiming that, are you? Therefore, if you cannot show that Luke was the attending physician for Mary, Luke's statement in his book of the NT becomes nothing more than his opinion. It cannot be used as evidence, and I think you should know that Ryan, because such a tactic has been used against you, me, and others by UFO nutters.

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Postby uberarcanist » Fri Apr 04, 2008 3:37 am

You Can Call Me Ray wrote: But I notice you still cannot (and never will be able to) refute that they WERE copycats when it came to instilling the birth of Jesus with the "virgin birth" myth.
Ray


Pretty hard to lie about not asking someone to prove something in the negative when I can quote your words as easy as that, is it?
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Postby Access Denied » Fri Apr 04, 2008 4:04 am

OK folks, I moved this debate out of ScaRZ’s thread since it was off-topic…

ryguy wrote:Look at my first post in this forum:

Considering the sensitive nature of this subject matter, there will be much tighter controls on attacks and insensitive or derogatory remarks toward other members related to their spiritual beliefs within this forum.

If someone comes in HERE, the spirituality and religion forum, and claims that they believe they met an alien, I'd leave them alone.

You know why? Because they're admitting that it's a religious/spiritual belief.

I'm sorry you don't comprehend the difference.

P.S. - read that quote a few times before you click "reply" again.

I think we could all use a little more clarification on this Ryan, are you saying if someone admits something is only a belief (or speculation) then they shouldn’t be questioned?

I just want to make sure we’re not discouraging anyone from engaging others in a healthy and open debate on these topics.
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Postby You Can Call Me Ray » Fri Apr 04, 2008 4:33 am

uberarcanist wrote:
You Can Call Me Ray wrote: But I notice you still cannot (and never will be able to) refute that they WERE copycats when it came to instilling the birth of Jesus with the "virgin birth" myth.
Ray


Pretty hard to lie about not asking someone to prove something in the negative when I can quote your words as easy as that, is it?


Fair enough. I retract that request. (However, I should point out the irony that the Christian scholar references that Ryan provided are, indeed, TRYING to prove a negative! As such, how much creedance should those scholars be given?) But my request for evidence of the virgin birth claim remains. So now that I have owned-up to my shortcomings, will you guys admit there is absolutely no proof to this claim of Christianity?

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Postby uberarcanist » Fri Apr 04, 2008 5:14 am

I appreciate your humility Ray, perhaps you can teach me something yet. 8) Well, anyways, I do not think the virgin birth is or will ever be provable, I take it as a matter of faith, nevertheless I believe the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ are more important, and are provable in light of the fact that the Jews could have easily debunked this theory had it been fable, as the Gospels were produced in a very narrow time frame after the events they depicted, nonetheless the Jews never did such a thing.
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Re: Is the Bible simply a book?

Postby torbjon » Fri Apr 04, 2008 12:57 pm

Chorlton wrote:Sorry but to me the Bible is simply a book, to base any assumptions or beliefs on a book is to me total lunacy. To also consider that millions if not billions of people lead their lives by that book I also find alarming.

Its simply a book with no more credibility in it than a book by, say Von Daniken

Sorry its my opinion.


oooo, forbidden topic *drools* he hee heee, I'm in heaven...

okay, keeping in mind that I ignored Everything between the OPs statement quoted above and here, (only glanced and did not see the answer to the question I'm about to pose, which I'm sure is yes but I must pose it anyway)

Chorlton; Did you actually Read the thing? Actually, scratch that... Did you read Both of them? (the bible and the von daniken thing?)

NOT touching on the spiritual mystical philosophical mumbo jumbo here, not me, no way, uh - uh.

no

it was the statement:

"Its simply a book with no more credibility in it than a book by, say Von Daniken"

that sucked me in.

BOTH books got some crap in them, no doubts...

BOTH books got some verified facts in them, too...

like, the first time ever heard about the Nazca lines was in VDs nutty crunchy book... okay, so, he's a nut job *shrugs* the Lines are Real... (not talking about any conclusions anyone anywhere may have about them, just the physical existence of them)

same with the bible... sure there's a lotta freeky philosophy and politics there, but there's some rather interesting historical stuff there, too... stuff that has been vetted by archaeologists... In fact, if my understanding of the subject is correct, some of the archaeological discoveries made in the last 100 years were due to clues found in biblical writings...

That's gotta be a good thing, yes?

Everything has value.... you, me, stupid books (even lame flame wars between geeky forums *laughs*)

Everything.

It's up to us to find that value and put it to good use.

Or not *shrugs*

I go now
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Postby You Can Call Me Ray » Fri Apr 04, 2008 4:43 pm

Uber,

Thanks for at least coming clean about the virgin birth. I respect your right to faith and do not question that, even tho I would demand evidence of anyone who claims that event was fact, rather than myth.

uberarcanist wrote: nevertheless I believe the death, burial, and resurrection of Christ are more important, and are provable in light of the fact that the Jews could have easily debunked this theory had it been fable, as the Gospels were produced in a very narrow time frame after the events they depicted, nonetheless the Jews never did such a thing.


I would like to review any evidence that anyone thinks supports this claim. Just like in dissecting UFO claims, we can often look at the eyewitness accounts and find elements of those accounts that can support an alternate conclusion. Towhit:

No on argues that the record shows that Jesus Christ began his passion and allegedly died on the cross all in the same day. And yet, the typical story of anyone who was crucified by the Romans tells us that these people would actually live up there on the cross for days, in agony. Indeed, when one examines the "engineering" of crucifixtion by Rome, it was devised specifically for this purpose. It would thusly serve as a "message" to any passers-by that were thinking of challenging Roman rule.

So the question becomes: If the average person lasted for more than one day, why did Christ "die" in a matter of hours? Isn't is POSSIBLE that he was not, in fact, dead when his body was removed from the cross? And then we have an account of a soldier offering Jesus gaul in a sponge on a stick. Isn't it POSSIBLE that there was a drug in that gaul that rendered him unconscious?

The following is a URL which explores a lot of these (more plausible) explanations for what is reported in eyewitness accounts:

http://www.no-god.com/article/jesusdie.html

The Gospel writers disagree on many points, such as the hour of the crucifixion, who arrived at the tomb, when they arrived, whether it was dark or light, and so forth. One point of agreement is the time of Jesus' "death". In Matthew 27.48-51, Jesus dies, or passes out, almost immediately after taking a drink from a soaked sponge. Mark 15.36 tells us that Jesus gave up a loud cry, and died, after taking a drink from a sponge. John 19.30 also verifies this.

Was the sponge soaked with vinegar, as the gospels report? Vinegar would have had a stimulating effect. It would have woke him up, rather than rendered him unconscious. The sponge was not soaked with vinegar.

Was there a drug, readily available, with which Jesus could have simulated death?

The Drug: Opium.

All sorts of drugs were available to the ancients, including opium. Opium is mentioned in the first century A.D., by Dioscorides in De Materia Medica. Assyrian writings mention opium. Opium was well-known in the first century A.D., and the poppy flower(Papaver Somniferum) was commonly available in the first century Israel, as it grew wild all over the Mesopotamian region. Jesus, therefore, had the opportunity, if he desired, to acquire Opium.

Opium is a source of various natural narcotics including morphine. Opium is a particularly good choice of a drug for one wishing to simulate his own death. The narcotic effect on the central nervous system would have caused respiratory depression. Jesus would have appeared not to be breathing. Actually, his breath would have been very slow. The depressive effects would have lowered his heart rate, slowing that, also. His heart would not have appeared to be beating. The cumulative depressive effects would have lead to unconsciousness. Jesus would have appeared dead, but would have been merely asleep.


My point here has been pretty consistent (IMO): We must apply the SAME process to extraordinary claims of the life and death of Jesus that we apply to UFOs. Rather than simply "having faith" that the more extraordinary claim is the actual truth, it is more instructive to examine the more plausible explanations...and see if there is enough traction to believe these as truth in the absence of solid evidence to prove the more extraordinary claims.

If we follow this process for UFOs, and we chastise those who believe the extraordinary claims in the face of more mundane explanations, how does it look if we abandon this process just because one of OUR beliefs is the one being scrutinized?

This is the logic that I began to move through in my high school years. It is the logic that caused me to renounce my Catholicism, BUT NOT MY BELIEF IN A GOD. Instead, I turned to scientific investigations and my ultimate focus on complex systems engineering as a "path towards a proof of a Creator". Myths and stories no longer hold any traction in my mind, for the very fact that they HAVE been used to control people and influence what they believe.

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