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Why create the damned?

dockeen

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I started a thread on this in the old forum, but it was not taken up. Being stupid, I will try again.

Many Xtians would tell you that there are the elect, and everybody else. The everybody else are doomed to suffer eternal damnation.
Now, here is my question. It the damned are here for a purpose, to serve an important role in the salvation of the elect, then why
use "real" souls to fulfill the role of the damned creatures. Use avatars, agents, whatever you want to call them to play out the
right role. Now, you no longer have the elect and the damned, but the elect and disposable props, that do not require eternal
damnation?
 

DBT

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Doesn't the Bible say that the damned were, basically, created by God in order to 'make His power known' and to 'Glorify the 'elect,' the 'vessels of mercy?

“Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? What if God, willing to show his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,” - Romans 9:21-23
 

dockeen

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Doesn't the Bible say that the damned were, basically, created by God in order to 'make His power known' and to 'Glorify the 'elect,' the 'vessels of mercy?

“Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honour, and another unto dishonour? What if God, willing to show his wrath, and to make his power known, endured with much longsuffering the vessels of wrath fitted to destruction: And that he might make known the riches of his glory on the vessels of mercy, which he had afore prepared unto glory,” - Romans 9:21-23

i.e. there is a role in the grand play. There is no reason that I can see why there has to be a "real" person in that role.
 

rousseau

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Because hell was created as an instrument of fear to prop up the church and had absolutely no real logic behind it.
 

dockeen

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There seems to be a theme in those xtians that I can get to address this question that goes like this:

You can only have real winners, if you have real losers.
 

James Brown

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Another oft-given answer is that Earth is a sort of training ground, intended to weed out those not truly committed to a life of ease in Paradise. If God pre-selected who's going to Heaven and gave only them a soul, then there's nothing to test. If you've made it this far and you have a soul--and nearly everyone feels that they do--then you're in. No more worrying about your eternal fate; thus, no more incentive to live a moral life.

No answer that I've seen from any Christian can seem to improve on what would be the ideal solution with the least amount of suffering--God should just create the people he wants in Heaven with him to begin with, and forget all these intermediate stages that result in some percentage of living people suffering and dying. That's what an omnipotent and benevolent God would do.
 

dockeen

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Note that there is a definite difference between a training ground, and a testing ground. If life is a training ground, then it definitely seems that real souls playing the roles of the damned are unnecessary.

If it is a testing ground, and god needs for the wheat to sort itself from the chaff, then that has very definitive implications for omniscience, and, arguably, omni-benevolence.

ETA: If god does not know in advance who the winners and losers are, then god does not know for example whether all will be losers, and require eternal torment. Now, if this sort of "shot in the dark" creation does not bother one, well...
 

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Maybe GOD is omniscient, but Satan isn't, and God is forced to play all this out so that Satan will see God was right, 151,600 times per day.

Oh. Wait. 'Forced.' That has implications for omnipotence, doesn't it?

Nasty snarl....
 

dockeen

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Maybe GOD is omniscient, but Satan isn't, and God is forced to play all this out so that Satan will see God was right, 151,600 times per day.

Oh. Wait. 'Forced.' That has implications for omnipotence, doesn't it?

Nasty snarl....

Does make one wonder who is working for whom.
 

credoconsolans

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I started a thread on this in the old forum, but it was not taken up. Being stupid, I will try again.

Many Xtians would tell you that there are the elect, and everybody else. The everybody else are doomed to suffer eternal damnation.
Now, here is my question. It the damned are here for a purpose, to serve an important role in the salvation of the elect, then why
use "real" souls to fulfill the role of the damned creatures. Use avatars, agents, whatever you want to call them to play out the
right role. Now, you no longer have the elect and the damned, but the elect and disposable props, that do not require eternal
damnation?

Some religious people do think that those who are not 'with them' are soulless.

We don't want to encourage that kind of thinking. You see what many of them already do to their fellow humans even when they DO think they have a soul.
 

T.G.G. Moogly

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Because hell was created as an instrument of fear to prop up the church and had absolutely no real logic behind it.
It's religion evolving. People will hold onto what works. Whodda thunk a dead guy nailed to boards would have caught on? But it came along with not having to kill animals anymore or venerate countless other gods. Cleaned things up nicely and made religious life simpler.

The hell part is still being hashed out.
 

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I started a thread on this in the old forum, but it was not taken up. Being stupid, I will try again.

Many Xtians would tell you that there are the elect, and everybody else. The everybody else are doomed to suffer eternal damnation.
Now, here is my question. It the damned are here for a purpose, to serve an important role in the salvation of the elect, then why
use "real" souls to fulfill the role of the damned creatures. Use avatars, agents, whatever you want to call them to play out the
right role. Now, you no longer have the elect and the damned, but the elect and disposable props, that do not require eternal
damnation?

The weird part of the Christian NT theology is that God decides who is elect and who is reprobate and damned with admittedly no reason for his choice. Why not make all elect? This theology in the end is incoherent and senseless. Islam is just as bad. Why create Jane elect and John not elect, Jane good and John evil from the beginning of time? I know of no theologian that has an answer. Nor can Christians deal with this in any adequate way. The best they can do is point to divine command or God's incomprehensibility. But both answers reject God as essentially good, not merciful, compassionate fair and so on. That is not good.

It appears to me that the entire concept of God is incoherent, and the Bible writers simply dug themselves over time, a deep hole. There is so much wrong with the God concept in this manner it is hard to even list all the impossible problems.

This God in the end is bad tempered, childish, peevish and evil. We are no better than toys for his idiosyncratic games. It dismays me that few seem to recognize all of this for the illogical farce it is.Hell makes no sense since God decides who will do evil from the beginning, predestining all that happens. Why not predestining all are to be good and be elect and saved? To impress us? Makes no sense. After all, from the beginning he decides who will be impressed and who won't.

In the end theology posits this is all a surreal dadaist Universe created by a bad tempered, foolish God.
 

dockeen

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As I (and others) have noted, many xtians react with visceral hatred to any suggestion that the paradise of heaven does not have a partner that features eternal torment. You can't have winners if you don't have losers.
 

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So, if I have this right, Lucifer and His crew (one third of the host of Heaven), were created to be Heavenly Beings residing in Heaven. Yet these 'Heavenly Creatures' rebelled while still residing in Paradise and consequently were Damned Eternally by their Omniscient Creator. Which places Authorship of Damnation firmly at the feet of......
 

dockeen

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Lucifer! ;)

Xtians Axiom: No matter how it looks, it is NEVER god's fault, or "god's bad". If god creates a being that goes rogue (and even if god knew in advance it would do so), any damage that being does is the being's fault, with none of the blame on god.

If the result is god, glory to god. If it's bad, it's someone else's fault. What a leader!
 

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I suspect hell is there to provide clerical work for the saved. Like the meticulous record-keeping that went on in the Nazi extermination camps.
 

James Brown

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So, if I have this right, Lucifer and His crew (one third of the host of Heaven), were created to be Heavenly Beings residing in Heaven. Yet these 'Heavenly Creatures' rebelled while still residing in Paradise and consequently were Damned Eternally by their Omniscient Creator. Which places Authorship of Damnation firmly at the feet of......

Yes. Twice (Pre-creation heaven and the Garden of Eden) God has created a paradise peopled with free-willed beings, and in both cases the experiment was a failure. But if you act fast, I can guarantee you a spot in the third instance of a paradise peopled with free-willed beings, and this time there won't be any foul-ups.

Honest!
 

Kharakov

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I personally guarantee it's not God trolling to trick us into learning various things.
 

another1

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Ironic that many Nazi scientists worked for the United States during and after the "fall" of the Nazi party. Ironic that the meticulousness of those scientists makes for a more pleasant visit at the dentist for me today. That isn't some messed up little allusion for damnation avatars and whatever they're talking about. Godless and odd people they are but fun read. I'm a Baptist taught that it is a sin to tell someone that they are damned. I don't think someone with decent values is damned even if they are too stupid or too smart to accept the love of God. Maybe they just replay a Godless life like an echo after they die. Maybe try praying next time deja vu hits. I don't know and would care very little if I did. The eternal ten seconds after a huge Morphine shot awaits me man.
 

WAB

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Ah, The Hell With It


A play in one scene°, by WilliamB


Characters—

GOD, ineffably* [et al]

WilliamB, a guy
DBT, a guest
fromderinside, a guest


Act One. Scene one°. Arizona desert. An apartment. A room. A desk, with an end-table on either side. A bed. Piles of books. WilliamB sits at desk, a bowl of cheesy poofs on end-table beside him, a cigarette burning in an ashtray on end-table to his left. God appears* to WilliamB.



GOD: WilliamB, I have a proposal for you.

WilliamB: (shakily) Okay, Lord.

GOD: How about I give you another son? Only this one'll be a real bastard. He'll be so bad, you'll have to tie him up, blindfold him, and stick him in the closet until he's eighteen.

WilliamB: (worriedly) Lord, that doesn't sound so good. Will I get a chance to work on him with love, like I did my other boys?

GOD: No.

WilliamB: (tremblingly): Um, Lord, am I allowed to decline this propo...

GOD: (loudly and authoritatively [and sounding remarkably like GOD Who did a cameo in Monty Python's 'Holy Grail'; also ineffably, see*]) Of course not!


(There is a knock at the front door of the apartment. WilliamB rises, walks down the corridor, through the living room, and opens the door. DBT and fromderinside, dressed as angels, are standing on the step. DBT is holding a can of Foster's®; fromderinside looks bored.)


DBT: (holds out the can of beer cheerfully) Here ya go, mate. Yer gonna need it! (flies off, wings beating rapidly)

GOD:(literary-allusionly) Admit them! Admit them!

fromderinside: (wryly) There's no 'them'. Gabriel buggered off.

GOD: Is that you, Michael?

fromderinside: (aside) Mr. Know-it-all...

(curtain)
 

dockeen

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Ironic that many Nazi scientists worked for the United States during and after the "fall" of the Nazi party. Ironic that the meticulousness of those scientists makes for a more pleasant visit at the dentist for me today. That isn't some messed up little allusion for damnation avatars and whatever they're talking about. Godless and odd people they are but fun read. I'm a Baptist taught that it is a sin to tell someone that they are damned. I don't think someone with decent values is damned even if they are too stupid or too smart to accept the love of God. Maybe they just replay a Godless life like an echo after they die. Maybe try praying next time deja vu hits. I don't know and would care very little if I did. The eternal ten seconds after a huge Morphine shot awaits me man.

You might want to ponder the purpose of witness before posting,
 

dockeen

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I have to ask...how can you possibly guarantee that?

Say things with certainty!

I think he is trying to avoid the issue by minimizing the spiritual growth and learning side of the equation, and painting life as a proving ground,
 

Keith&Co.

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Ironic that many Nazi scientists worked for the United States during and after the "fall" of the Nazi party.
Um...where's the irony? Experts in their field got work in their field?
And why the quotes around fall?
Do you think the Nazi party (and the entire nation, army, etc.) didn't really fall? What are you trying to say?
Ironic that the meticulousness of those scientists makes for a more pleasant visit at the dentist for me today.
Scientists aren't supposed to be meticulous? Or only Nazi scientists were meticulous?
I'm confused.
That isn't some messed up little allusion for damnation avatars and whatever they're talking about. Godless and odd people they are but fun read.
Um...okay. Nazis tended to think they were doing God's work, but whatever.
I'm a Baptist taught that it is a sin to tell someone that they are damned.
Do you mean that pointing it out is a sin? Or is it arrogance to assume that you, as a mortal, can identify how God is going to decide on a soul-by-soul basis?
Because a lot of Baptists i've known won't hesitate to identify hell-bent behavior, though they do footnote it a lot.
I don't think someone with decent values is damned even if they are too stupid or too smart to accept the love of God. Maybe they just replay a Godless life like an echo after they die.
So, we don't go to Hell, we just keep repeating the life that didn't get us into heaven the first time? And this is part of God's plan to keep us out of hell by....um. What?
Maybe try praying next time deja vu hits. I don't know and would care very little if I did. The eternal ten seconds after a huge Morphine shot awaits me man.
Are you....on...something?
 

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I have pondered. I do think Morphine and an orgasm simultaneously for eternity is pretty much Heaven to me. I left out cocaine. A lot of cocaine. God made it - can't hate it. Nonbelievers on the internet are better witnesses than I, so let them witness. I'll just make myself laugh and learn a little. That post was a response to ideology hunter but I forgot to quote btw
 

Kharakov

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Never give a sucker an even break?


Speaking of suckers, got a question about gravity over here in the natural science subforum

 

WAB

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How's your Quiche Lorraine?

It's excellent, and stop calling me Lorraine.

^I actually had this exchange once in a chat room, many years ago. I lied to some lady I was flirting with and told her I was a chef, when all I was was a cook. An institutional cook, no less. But I did make a mean quiche. Not Lorraine. I've never made a Lorraine. I've never known a Lorraine.

I want you all to call me Loretta.
 
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Underseer

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I started a thread on this in the old forum, but it was not taken up. Being stupid, I will try again.

Many Xtians would tell you that there are the elect, and everybody else. The everybody else are doomed to suffer eternal damnation.
Now, here is my question. It the damned are here for a purpose, to serve an important role in the salvation of the elect, then why
use "real" souls to fulfill the role of the damned creatures. Use avatars, agents, whatever you want to call them to play out the
right role. Now, you no longer have the elect and the damned, but the elect and disposable props, that do not require eternal
damnation?

The whole business about "the elect" is more or less exclusive to Calvinists, isn't it? I know that covers a number of denominations, but still, I don't think it's fair to paint all Christians with this broad brush.
 

dockeen

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I started a thread on this in the old forum, but it was not taken up. Being stupid, I will try again.

Many Xtians would tell you that there are the elect, and everybody else. The everybody else are doomed to suffer eternal damnation.
Now, here is my question. It the damned are here for a purpose, to serve an important role in the salvation of the elect, then why
use "real" souls to fulfill the role of the damned creatures. Use avatars, agents, whatever you want to call them to play out the
right role. Now, you no longer have the elect and the damned, but the elect and disposable props, that do not require eternal
damnation?

The whole business about "the elect" is more or less exclusive to Calvinists, isn't it? I know that covers a number of denominations, but still, I don't think it's fair to paint all Christians with this broad brush.

Actually, if one believes in a temporally omniscient god, god already knows who the "winners and losers" are. All that has to be done then is to replace the losers with agents who play the role the losers would have played.
 

WAB

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I started a thread on this in the old forum, but it was not taken up. Being stupid, I will try again.

Many Xtians would tell you that there are the elect, and everybody else. The everybody else are doomed to suffer eternal damnation.
Now, here is my question. It the damned are here for a purpose, to serve an important role in the salvation of the elect, then why
use "real" souls to fulfill the role of the damned creatures. Use avatars, agents, whatever you want to call them to play out the
right role. Now, you no longer have the elect and the damned, but the elect and disposable props, that do not require eternal
damnation?

The whole business about "the elect" is more or less exclusive to Calvinists, isn't it? I know that covers a number of denominations, but still, I don't think it's fair to paint all Christians with this broad brush.

The 'elect' isn't exclusive to Calvinists, I believe it was a biggy with Luther as well. It does have some Biblical support, but then again, just about any theological proposition can have Biblical support. Shakespeare: 'The devil can cite scripture to his purpose.' (I paraphrase from memory, but that's pretty close.)

In my opinion (Sorry God, if I'm wrong!) is that the concept of 'the elect' makes religion, faith, the whole Judeo-Christian tradition, completely pointless.

If I tie a man's legs together, and then expect him to win a race with a man whose legs are NOT tied together, how can I damn him to eternity, since I tied his legs together?

It's nonsense. And a huge insult to God. If I'm wrong, then I guess I'm going to hell. But, like I've said, I consider it my duty as a follower of Christ to WANT to go to hell rather than spend Eternity knowing that millions of souls are suffering and I can't do anything about it.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bodhisattva

Maybe I've got it all wrong and I'm supposed to be a Buddhist?

(Just kidding, Lord)

:joy:
 

Keith&Co.

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Heh, good one.
You're worried about an insult to a god that solves the problem of grown men being taunted by children with sending bears to tare them up.

But being unfair is somehow beneath him...
 

Cheerful Charlie

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I started a thread on this in the old forum, but it was not taken up. Being stupid, I will try again.

Many Xtians would tell you that there are the elect, and everybody else. The everybody else are doomed to suffer eternal damnation.
Now, here is my question. It the damned are here for a purpose, to serve an important role in the salvation of the elect, then why
use "real" souls to fulfill the role of the damned creatures. Use avatars, agents, whatever you want to call them to play out the
right role. Now, you no longer have the elect and the damned, but the elect and disposable props, that do not require eternal
damnation?

The whole business about "the elect" is more or less exclusive to Calvinists, isn't it? I know that covers a number of denominations, but still, I don't think it's fair to paint all Christians with this broad brush.

No. Martin Luther was explicit. Free will is impossible. See his book "Bondage of the will". As were a lot of theologians following Luther/Calvin. Arminians believe in free will. Methodists follow Arminianism.
 

WAB

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The whole business about "the elect" is more or less exclusive to Calvinists, isn't it? I know that covers a number of denominations, but still, I don't think it's fair to paint all Christians with this broad brush.

Actually, if one believes in a temporally omniscient god, god already knows who the "winners and losers" are. All that has to be done then is to replace the losers with agents who play the role the losers would have played.

This is actually an interesting theory, which has been talked about for years: Maybe we're in a super-advanced game or program, and the 'suffering masses' are just sprites that haven't really suffered, we just think they have, from our perspective.

Of course, this is a grave and colossal insult to the millions of real individuals who have suffered throughout humanity's ugly history. If this is a game, I would sure like to know it. I won't treat it as a game unless and until I wake up in a vat somewhere, and KNOW I'm in a vat.
 

WAB

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Heh, good one.
You're worried about an insult to a god that solves the problem of grown men being taunted by children with sending bears to tare them up.

But being unfair is somehow beneath him...

Of course I'm worried! Who wouldn't be! What if the universe actually IS run by a sadistic super being? I don't think that's the case, as I've been careful to point out.

'Heh' is one of the more annoying cliches on the Internet. It's close to 'um', and 'erm' in sheer lack of creativity and communicative power.
 

Keith&Co.

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Heh, good one.
You're worried about an insult to a god that solves the problem of grown men being taunted by children with sending bears to tare them up.

But being unfair is somehow beneath him...

Of course I'm worried! Who wouldn't be! What if the universe actually IS run by a sadistic super being?
Then that worry would be completely separate from a worry about whether or not he could be insulted by pointing out that he's been exhibiting dickish behavior.
I don't think that's the case, as I've been careful to point out.
Yes, you have. It's just funny how anyone could read The Books and decide that the guy who considers genocide 'plan B' is someone they want to admire.
'Heh' is one of the more annoying cliches on the Internet. It's close to 'um', and 'erm' in sheer lack of creativity and communicative power.
It doesn't communicate that i laughed lightly at your post? I mean, it's a word, with a meaning. "used typically to indicate interrogation and often to express scorn, amusement, or surprise."
How odd that i used the word i wanted to express my intended meaning, well within the parameters of scholarly definition, and you view it as a 'cliche.'

Maybe i should take the cheap internet apologist route and just start using random words, and then get upset when you don't grok or you mistake my banana in conversation?
That's more of a 'cliche,' in my humble autocollimator.
 

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If an Omniscient/Omnipotent Being created the World, the World and its events unfold in precisely the way it was intended. Each and every act that an agent makes was known by the OOB long before the act of creation, in fact it must always have been known, a condition that makes any reference or use of the term 'free will' absurd.
 
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Kharakov

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The whole business about "the elect" is more or less exclusive to Calvinists, isn't it? I know that covers a number of denominations, but still, I don't think it's fair to paint all Christians with this broad brush.

No. Martin Luther was explicit. Free will is impossible. See his book "Bondage of the will". As were a lot of theologians following Luther/Calvin. Arminians believe in free will. Methodists follow Arminianism.
Yeah dummy. Free will has nothing to do with will that is formed by experience- which your will is. No excuse except idiocy when one does evil. Free will is constrained by knowledge- have you had a good time at any point in your life? You've learned how to act in some small situation.
 

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''Free will'' constrained by 'knowledge,' determinism, environment, unchosen genetic conditions, neural architecture, shaped by social and cultural conditioning and life events, looks more like....
 

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Heh, good one.
You're worried about an insult to a god that solves the problem of grown men being taunted by children with sending bears to tare them up.

But being unfair is somehow beneath him...

Of course I'm worried! Who wouldn't be! What if the universe actually IS run by a sadistic super being? I don't think that's the case, as I've been careful to point out.

'Heh' is one of the more annoying cliches on the Internet. It's close to 'um', and 'erm' in sheer lack of creativity and communicative power.

If the universe is being run by an evil being, well, let's face it, odds are you are screwed.

I would submit that a god who is worried about any insults I might throw in his direction has definite security issues. :)
 

Keith&Co.

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I would submit that a god who is worried about any insults I might throw in his direction has definite security issues. :)

Not at all. I was all set to burn out a Red Ant hill in my back yard this one time, but i heard a little black ant say i was being a dick, so i dumped the entire can of gasoline on HIS hill and it burned for fourteen minutes. Got bit by red ants three times while i was watching the fire, but i sure showed that little fucker! I laughed all the way to the store. to buy more gas and some lotion for ant bites.

Now, does 'laughed all the way to the store' sound like someone with security issues? I think NOT!
 
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