Hey 'Uncle', put down your firey sword for a minute and answer me this: First off I don't believe in god. (this is not a choice and I'm not interested in hearing from people who are not intelligent enough to unerstand the nature of observable reality, much less that which we cannot observe) I am just as incapable of believng in god as I am beliveing that I am god. The evidence does not support it and I cannot disregard what I know and can prove to be true. Still I was given a fair chance I was raised Catholic and did, for most of my childhood, believe what I had been taught regarding that religion. I am not an immoral or intolerant person though, and for my own reaosons, I keep similar values o those of most Christians. So assuming that I lived an ideal Christian life, in comparison to a Cristian man who was welcomed into paradise, that I was worthy in every action and every thought excepting faith, would you say that god would condemn me where he was accepted for that?
#1. Actually, what I meant was...will a member of some African tribe for instance go to hell because his religion does not include Jesus Christ and God ? After all...people keep telling me that those who do not believe in God or Jesus will end up in hell.
#2 You say God decided what was right, but that's because you believe in that God. What I meant was : there are so many religions on this world and not all of them include God and Jesus Christ. Now how do we as people determine who's right ? And why do people follow a religion without questioning the relevancy of that religion, since there are so many others religions ? I mean...if I claim to be able to prepare the best steak in the world and so does my neighbor, shouldn't we both question our own opinion on our steak preparing qualities ?
#3 : I find it strange to believe in something many others say is not true. I would feel uncomfortable believing in it.
#4 : there is no indication whatsoever that hell exists,
....or heaven, for that matter. After you and I die, I can't tell you "I told you so" and neither can you. We'll be dead.
The fact that people claim the existance of heaven and hell is the result of the promises that are being made by religion.
To me, you believing you'll go to heaven if you do the right thing(s) is exactly the same as an Al Quaeda member believing good things await him if he flies a plane into the WTC. It's promises, based on what people want to believe in.
My belief promises nothing.
I recognize myself too.
w8in: Ive asked Protestant Christians the "Will Hindus go to hell?" question many times. From what I've been TOLD, they will not, because one has to have been taught the Word of God first.
I have asked Catholic Christians, who say yes, because we are born with original sin, and must repent before death.
I have asked Jehovah's Witnesses and they have another story: If one does not accept Jesus into their heart as Savior, then they do, in fact, go to hell.
So, if the Christians cant decide, then why is it they dont know? You would think that different religions worshipping the same God from the same Bible would have the same answer, but no.
My best guess is that none of them know for sure.
I don't think they know for sure either and this is kind of sad, if you think of it.
I would like to convert everyone to my "religion" : today is today and tomorrow is tomorrow. Be a good person and get as much out of life as you can. It could be over before you know it. No promises or guarantees whatsoever. Results may vary.
Okay, one at a time, starting with Misophist. I believe that faith is a choice. Period. I believed as a kid, chose not to as a young adult, and chose again to believe as a less young adult. So we can't even agree on that nature of belief.
Putting that aside, however, I'm not God and can't tell you what He'll decide. Scripture says you have to believe in God. Your actions should align themselves with that faith, but it is faith that matters, and if that isn't behind "good" deeds, they aren't really that good. So doing something that a Christian might do, but not out of the most important thing- faith- is worth nothing. That is what the scriptures and most interpretations of it say.
Personally, while God doesn't just accept any and everything, as Reborn would have us believe, He *is* love, and as such, I suspect He is pretty forgiving and tolerant and might see past some scriptural rule that addresses a single group of people.
Another thing, Misophist, while you may have been joking with the "fiery sword" thing, some fool will be citing it soon enough as evidence for why he or she doesn't like Christians, so I must comment.
I'm not a fiery sword fundamentalist, and there are very few Christians who are; they just get lots of press. My perceived fieriness is, in this case, exasparation.
1. Like I said, either God *has* given such isolated tribes the opportunity to know Him, or He will have a back-up plan.
2. No Earthly examples really fit perfectly, but I'll go with your steak analogy on the condition that there is a quantifiable "best" steak. God is not opinion, so that must be a caveat of continuing with your steak analogy. In that case, people will still disagree about it, but one side will be right, and they must be impressed upon witht he arguments in favor of one steak, and accept them. Oh man, is this getting ridiculous.
4. I provided for all the various possibilities about Heaven and Hell. I didn't push my personal opinion.
omegavolt, have you ever heard of *people* who disagree? Why should Christians be any different? I find it ironic that although non-believers reject the Christian notion of God and look down their noses at us as though we are a bunch of gullible sheep, they still expect Christians to be above so many human failings, as evidenced when you two, omegavolt and w8in, point to intra-Christian differences as a sign of weakness. Well, duh! We *are* weak, just like everyone else. Would it be okay for Christians to answer certain questions by saying, "I don't know; it's up to God"? Experience here tells me no, that they would then be called mindless sheep.
1. You believe so. Personally I think it's a guess and you're believing in your guess.
2. Based upon the diversity of religions, it still strikes me as unbelievable (no pun intended) that so little people question their faith. How can you make the right decision about what you believe in when you have only heard about one belief or set of beliefs ?
If I see the biggest rabbit I've ever seen, how can I claim it's the biggest rabbit ever ?
4. No, you didn't. I never said you did.
1. And you don't. Stalemate here.
2. I know very few people who don't question their faith. It's kind of like that W.C. Fields thing: "I never knew a man I didn't like." What if you didn't like someone? You didn't know him. I'll admit that I have questioned my faith, and continue to do so, but to what extent I will discuss that depends on who I am talking to. If the person is like some shark that simply smells blood in the water when I admit such, chances are I'm going to put up a pretty stoic front.
2b. I can make my decision based on what I have heard and learned just as easily as you can. Unless you are interested in converting, I don't really understand why you need to know and understand my beliefs so badly. You've already rejected them. Don't feign interest in me if all you really want to do is argue.
2c. Rabbit schmabbit.
You can reject something, yet still be intrigued by it.
I reject Jeffrey Dahmer's actions, yet I still think they're very interesting and would like to know how his mind worked...what went through him, etc.
9 Sep 1998, the Pope delivered a Wednesday address in St. Peter's Square:
"Through the practice of what is good in their own religious traditions, and following the dictates of their consciences, members of other religions positively respond to God's invitation and receive salvation in Jesus Christ, even though they may not recognize Him as their Savior."
Placing people in Hell because they have not heard the Gospel (and thus have not accepted it), I would say is profoundly immoral.
It's nice of the Pope to say that, neon, and I hope he is right, but without any proof of it in scripture, his opinion is worth no more to me than the church friends I respect.
w8in, the barbs I toss at your marriage, as explained earlier in a post you clearly didn't understand, are merely to illustrate your hypocrisy with regard to how you choosae to address religion here, not literal statements about your marriage. If you don't like hearing them, as you clearly do not as evidenced by your harping on them, consider how you might reframe the statements you make about religion.
It is this tone, w8in, that causes me to suspect your motives. You say things against religion, which I can respectfully disagree with in principle, but you say them with rudeness. Why shouldn't that affect my opinion of you and what your real goal is when you then question me about my faith?
Oh, and I see wolf boy is here, too.