12
   

Why do you think the Bible is factual?

 
 
BDV
 
Reply Wed 4 Jun, 2014 06:23 pm
Considering the evidence, the obvious mistranslations, the language barrier, the rewrites, the missing books, who compiled it, etc etc, how can you really portray it as a literal book of fact?
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  2  
Reply Wed 4 Jun, 2014 07:03 pm
@BDV,
Another one of these threads? Hasn't it all been said already?
rosborne979
 
  2  
Reply Wed 4 Jun, 2014 07:36 pm
@BDV,
I agree with Finn, this has all been done before. And as we've seen many many times, people who believe the bible is factual, don't do so because of evidence. They believe it because they want to believe it, and they rationalize it in whatever way is necessary to support their belief.
0 Replies
 
oralloy
 
  -2  
Reply Wed 4 Jun, 2014 09:15 pm

Which parts of the Bible? I certainly think the parts that align with history/archaeology are mostly factual.

The parts that contradict history/archaeology, not so much.
0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2014 03:37 am
@BDV,
BDV wrote:

Considering the evidence, the obvious mistranslations, the language barrier, the rewrites, the missing books, who compiled it, etc etc, how can you really portray it as a literal book of fact?


The Bible says there was a Rome...and that Rome was ruled by an emperor.

There is lots of other evidence that there was a Rome...and that it was ruled by an emperor.

What more do you want? It has to be a book of facts, right?
0 Replies
 
Debra Law
 
  3  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2014 05:08 am
There is a meme that some of my Facebook friends/family members have caused to appear on my page. The meme says:

"Yes, I am a Christian.
I believe the Bible.

I do not support homosexuality or 'homosexual marriage'.

Yes, I still love you.
Yes, we are still friends.
No, I am not judging you.
No, I am not condemning you to hell.
No, I will not let anyone bully you.

But, realize that name calling and stereotyping those of us who stand for what we believe is exactly what you don't want done to you. We have a right to speak what we believe, same as you have a right to speak what you believe."

http://www.christianfunnypictures.com/2013/07/yes-i-am-christian-i-believe-bible.html

The meme is contradictory and offensive. The message, apparently, is this: My intolerance is divinely inspired. Don't be intolerant of my intolerance.

If the quote is accurate, John Adams wrote a letter stating: "There exists, I believe, throughout the whole Christian world, a law which makes it blasphemy to deny, or to doubt the divine inspiration of all the books of the Old and New Testaments, from Genesis to Revelations."

http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/intolerance

John Adams noted, for instance, that blasphemy was punished in England by boring a hole through the tongue with a red-hot poker. He went on to say, "Books that cannot bear examination, certainly ought not to be established as divine inspiration by penal laws...."

I think we have come a very long way since Adams wrote that letter. The fact that we can discuss the factual accuracy of the Bible and question whether it was divinely inspired is a huge step forward. I look forward to the day when people can no longer rely on the antiquated books of the Bible to justify their hateful and intolerant conduct.



namdekan
 
  0  
Reply Thu 5 Jun, 2014 11:31 pm
@Debra Law,
"No, I am not a Christian.
I do not believe the Bible.

I do support homosexuality and homosexual marriage.

Yes, I still love you.
Yes, we are still friends.
No, I am not judging you.
No, I am not condemning you.
No, I will not bully you.

But, realize that name calling and stereotyping those of us who stand for what we believe is exactly what you don't want done to you. We have a right to speak what we believe, same as you have a right to speak what you believe.
0 Replies
 
rosborne979
 
  3  
Reply Fri 6 Jun, 2014 04:44 am
@Debra Law,
Much of the population (of the US) is getting tolerance confused with respect.
0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  2  
Reply Fri 6 Jun, 2014 04:10 pm
@Debra Law,
I've checked out your first link a few times searching for something I may have missed.

I'n not a Christian, and I view the Bible as a remarkable piece of literature, not the Word of God. I neither "support" nor "oppose" homosexuality and I don't have much of problem with same-sex marriages, although I appreciate why some feel that messing around with a fundamental societal tradition that's been with us for thousands of year might have a down side.

All this being said I fail to see why the message might be offensive, and I really can't see how it is contradictory.

You are offended by someone stating that they do not "support" homosexuality or "homosexual marriage?" Why.

The message isn't saying "homosexuals are abombinations" or "homosexuals should be stoned," and it doesn't say "homosexual marriages are a sin" or "homosexual marriages are the same as bestiality"

I would completely understand someone being offended by such statements, but a declaration that they do not "support" what you support?

The message specifically says that the person is not condemning anyone to hell. I suppose you could argue that a refusal to support implies having made a judgment, but clearly the world "judge" is used in a different context here: I am not judging you to be an abomination, damned etc.

Part of the difference of opinion in terms of "support" may be a difference of opinion in terms of the origin of homosexuality.

If one believes that homosexuality is a choice rather a genetic instruction, then the issue of support has relevance, and it is not contradictory to say I love you, or you are my friend but I don't support your sexual choices. Surely you don't believe that you are required to "support" all of the choices of your friends and those you love, do you?

Or are you making the assumption that the statement "I do not support homosexuality" is code for "I hate homosexuals and think they are depraved abominations"? This would certainly be a case of passing judgment based on prejudice as opposed to evidence.

At the same time, if one believes there is no choice in sexual orientation that what is the relevance of supporting it? Do you say you support blonde hair or brown eyes?

I imagine that you are dead certain that sexual orientation is not a choice. You may be right. In most cases I would agree, and when it is, it's as pointless for me to talk about whether or not I support it as it would be about gender. What sense would there be in saying I supporting being a woman or I don't support being a man? However in those cases where I believe a choice is being made (in the case of so-called bisexuality for example) I feel it is entirely relevant and acceptable for me consider whether or not I "support" it.

Your reaction to the statement actually supports a charge that you are stereo-typing the people who make it. Comparing them to people who use red hot pokers on blasphemers is ridiculous, as is insinuating the sentiment of the message is hateful and intolerant.

Tolerance doesn't mean agreement with or acceptance as true. It doesn't mean that you are required to "support" that with which you don't agree or take issue with. It means accepting these things within the context of the right to exist free of your persecution or assault. It certainly doesn't mean you have to love everyone or even be their friend and this message says that the person can feel love for a homosexual and/or have a friendship and rather than persecuting them the person will protect them from such persecution.

It does seem fairly clear that there is a connection between the statement of support and the statement of religious belief, but I don't think it's necessarily a given. I notice you're not giving credit to Christianity for the clearly positive sentiments expressed in this message as well. Is this because you assume they are insincere?

In any case what really is the big deal about someone connecting their lack of "support" for homosexuality and homosexual marriage with their religion and would you have had a similar reaction to the message if the first two lines were absent?

As I've already noted I don't see the statement concerning "support" to be an expression of intolerance, but are you also looking forward to the day when people will not rely on the antiquated books of the Bible to instruct and inspire them in loving and caring for their fellow humans.

There are so many more obvious and accurate examples of connecting religion and hatred that I am really surprised you chose this one.
0 Replies
 
Setanta
 
  3  
Reply Fri 6 Jun, 2014 04:25 pm
Someone who says they believe the bible, but that they don't condemn homosexuals, that they don't think of them as abomination has a serious problem with cognitive dissonance. In the King James Version, Leviticus, Chapter 20, Verse 13:

If a man also lie with mankind, as he lieth with a woman, both of them have committed an abomination: they shall surely be put to death; their blood shall be upon them.

Either they do not in fact believe in the bible, and are treating it like the stereotypic Chinese menu, picking some parts here and other parts over there--or they are hypocrites who do believe the bible, but want to claim that they don't condemn people whom they clearly do concemn if they believe the bible.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Fri 6 Jun, 2014 05:34 pm
If a person supposes that the Bible tells us there is a GOD...and tells us what the GOD is like...and tells us what pleases and offends the GOD...

...and still thinks that homosexual activity is moral and does not offend the GOD...

...that person is being a hypocrite...or is delusional.


Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Fri 6 Jun, 2014 10:37 pm
@Setanta,
Well, I suppose it depends upon what is meant by "believing in the Bible."

It certainly can mean believing every word written in the Bible to be the Word of God, but it can also mean believing that many of the stories told in the Bible are true, that Moses lived, freed the Jews from bondage in Egypt and received the 10 Commandments from God. That Jesus lived, that he performed miracles, and that after his crucifixion, rose from the Dead. I certainly know people like this. By saying they believe in the Bible they mean they believe in the Judeo/Christian mythos it contains(although I'm sure they wouldn't describe it as such).

Declaring a "belief" in the Bible and not condemning homosexuals can just as easily be explained by a definition of "believing in the Bible," as I have described, as attributing it to cognitive dissonance. Maybe they do view the Bible like an old Chinese menu and are selecting the parts they want to believe, the parts that make sense to them and skipping over the rest. So what? I would think that choosing to believe in the Gospel's message of love and rejecting or ignoring the condemnation of Leviticus would be appreciated rather than mocked.

Anyone who believes homosexuals should be condemned but denies that they do is more a liar than a hypocrite, but either way I would hardly bother to defend them.




0 Replies
 
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Fri 6 Jun, 2014 10:45 pm
@Frank Apisa,
But this message doesn't tell us any more than the person is a Christian and believes in the Bible and doesn't support homosexuality, but doesn't condemn them.

There is a third, alternative conclusion to your hypothetical: that person doesn't believe that every word written in the Bible tells us what God likes or what pleases or offends him. As indicated in my prior post, I know a great many people who look at the Bible in this way. A belief that the Bible contains the word of God is not the same as believing it is the Word of God. Everyone who holds the Bible to be sacred isn't a literalist.
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Sat 7 Jun, 2014 03:38 am
@Finn dAbuzz,
Finn dAbuzz wrote:

But this message doesn't tell us any more than the person is a Christian and believes in the Bible and doesn't support homosexuality, but doesn't condemn them.

There is a third, alternative conclusion to your hypothetical: that person doesn't believe that every word written in the Bible tells us what God likes or what pleases or offends him. As indicated in my prior post, I know a great many people who look at the Bible in this way. A belief that the Bible contains the word of God is not the same as believing it is the Word of God. Everyone who holds the Bible to be sacred isn't a literalist.


I agree with you completely on this, Finn. And my wording above does not go against what you have proposed.

I was saying that anyone who "supposes that the Bible tells us there is a GOD...and tells us what the GOD is like...and tells us what pleases and offends the GOD"...but who still thinks that homosexual activity is moral and does not offend the GOD...is off base. Way off base.

The people who treat the book as a Chinese menu are not part of that.

But for those people, I would ask about the reasons for "accepting" or "choosing" the parts that say there is a GOD at all...and that the GOD became incarnate to "die for our sins."

The homosexual part is minor league compared with those things.

Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Sat 7 Jun, 2014 03:02 pm
@Frank Apisa,
I believe there is a God because it makes sense to me; the most sense of all the possibilities. I'm not trying to be antagonistic here but if that wouldn't satisfy your question, I wouldn't really care. By belief in God neither requires you to share that belief nor sanction it. I do expect, if you wish to be considered a rational part of society, that you tolerate my belief, which is to say don't persecute me for it, and don't deny me any generally accepted rights based upon it. It would also be nice if you didn't hector me to explain my belief to your satisfaction (which is not to say you engage in this behavior).

I've no problem with your being curious as to why someone might believe in any particular part of the Bible such as Jesus died for humanity's sins. It's perfectly reasonable to ask someone if they would share the reasons for their beliefs, but it is rude to do so if your only interest is to create an opportunity for mocking them for their belief, or if they decline and you persist.

Perhaps one day you will receive an answer you've never heard before and that will be interesting, and I suppose it's always possible that you might even receive an answer that convinces you of their belief. I very much doubt both the former or the latter, but there's no harm in asking in good faith.

If, on the other hand, one of these people engages in proselytizing, "answering" questions never asked, and attempts to convert you, then I don't think it's wrong to tell them you think they are talking nonsense and are not interested. If they persist, I think a certain amount of rudeness is justified too.

The statement with which Debra apparently has such a problem, cannot be considered proselytizing, but it's not exactly invited either (although I suppose one could argue that if you found it, you were essentially inviting it) and I see nothing wrong with expressing the opinion that it doesn't make sense to you. There's also nothing wrong with expressing the opinion that you find it offensive and contradictory since we do have free speech, but I for one would hold you in higher regard if the source of offense was obvious to the so-called "reasonable man," or you at least tried to explain it.

I can appreciate that people find religion to be superstitious nonsense and that its acceptance can in some way harm the individual or even society, but the degree to which such harm is inflicted or whether or not any harm is actually generated is obviously based what makes up a person's religion.

If someone believes that every first born son should be sacrificed to their God, the harm inflicted is quite obvious. If, instead, they believe that they should love their fellow humans and strive to do good needs, because their Gods wants them to, I don't see any harm at all; quite the contrary.

If you believe that the earth is 5,000 years old, that humanity co-existed with dinosaurs and/or that every person who has ever lived or will live is the direct descendant of a male and female homo-sapien; instantaneously brought into being as adults, then, in my opinion, you are ignorant and/or self-deluded, and if there is any harm inflicted by these beliefs, it is minimal and isolated to you. I am not going to seek opportunities to disabuse you of or mock you for these beliefs. I'm not going to ask you to explain how you these beliefs can be true, because they cannot be. However if you choose to get in my face with these beliefs I will tell you that you are ignorant, and if you try and force them on other people I will resist your efforts.

I still cannot see how the statement "I do not support homosexuality or homosexual marriage" can be considered offensive by the reasonable man. If someone says they do not condemn homosexuals, can love and befriend homosexuals and will seek to protect them from persecution, my first thought isn't that they are crazy, liars, or hypocrites because they also say they are a Christian and believe in the Bible. It seems to me that the people for whom this is their first thought are guilty of rampant generalization or the very bigotry the ascribe to the people making the statement. As they feel the need to point out bigotry when they see it, so do I.

I particularly dislike when people distort the concept of tolerance to bolster what they personally believe. In our current society, for good or bad, "tolerance" has become an almost sacred value, and few people are comfortable being perceived, rightly or wrongly, as intolerant. This is a good thing in that the true concept of tolerance should be a fundamental value of our society, but it is a bad thing because intellectually dishonest bullies are very happy and all too quick to distort it for attacks against those who do not share their beliefs.
BDV
 
  1  
Reply Sat 7 Jun, 2014 05:52 pm
@Finn dAbuzz,
it may have been said, but i do think it needs repeated
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Sat 7 Jun, 2014 08:20 pm
@BDV,
Why?

Because the people to whom you are directing this question and your implied opinion of their beliefs have never heard it before, and once they do they will see the light?

Because the people who agree with you need a morale boost while they fight the good fight against ignorance?

Because there is a great body of people who are on the fence about this issue and need to see how stupid fundamentalism is so they don't slip over to the dark side?

Because statements like the one Debra finds so offensive are prompting the lynching of gays around the country and must be stopped?

If anything associated with this issue needs to given attention and discussed it is:

a) The degree to which fundamentalist beliefs about the creation of the universe, the earth and mankind are being presented to children as a feasible theories or worse, fact. People should be free to believe what they wish and as much as it may prove unfortunate for their children, they should be free to teach their children what they believe. They should not be free, however, to impose ignorance on other children in their community. We have enough trouble teaching kids actual facts without teaching them nonsense.

b) The true nature and importance of tolerance and the issue of those clamoring the loudest about intolerance being among the leading practitioners of it.
BDV
 
  1  
Reply Sun 8 Jun, 2014 02:54 pm
@Finn dAbuzz,
This isn't about religion, its about a book, a book that many believe is factual, a piece of work that many portray as the actual words of a higher being, the source of many dogmas, the basis of many laws, rules and ideas that the christian world lives by, yet it is riddled with errors, and its history more full of myth than facts, nevermind the fact that many believe it was written in "Ye olde english".

Discussing a God's existence in this thread is not the point of it, its the discussion of the man written book and why so many believe it is factual and why the ignore the problems with it
Finn dAbuzz
 
  1  
Reply Sun 8 Jun, 2014 04:17 pm
@BDV,
If it's about the Bible or any other sacred text and whether or not people believe what is contained within it is literally true, then of course it is about religion.

In any case, the discussion hasn't wandered afar into whether or not God exists. It has been fairly focused on the belief that the Bible is factual because it contains the Word of God. Certainly my comments directed to you haven't raised the question of whether or not God exists, and if those directed to others have touched upon it, so what?

I agree with you that many believe the Bible is factual and it is the foundation of their religion (there's that pesky word again). I also agree with you enough to say that it probably contains as much or more myth than fact.(I'm not sure what all these errors are that riddle it. Is there a more definitive or better recognized source of Judeo/Christian myth?). This is something that has been presented and "discussed" ad nauseum in this forum. Regardless, the comment you made and to which I responded was

Quote:
it may have been said, but i do think it needs repeated


Putting aside that this certainly implies that your original “question” was at best disingenuous, and notwithstanding your expressed problem with any discussion of “religion” or “God’s existence,” you still haven’t answered my question as to why “it” needs repeating?

You’ve told me what “it” is:

Quote:
...many believe (the Bible) is factual, a piece of work that many portray as the actual words of a higher being, the source of many dogmas, the basis of many laws, rules and ideas that the christian world lives by, yet it is riddled with errors, and its history more full of myth than facts, nevermind the fact that many believe it was written in "Ye olde english".


But you haven’t told me why “it” needs repeating...or are you the only one who gets to ask questions in this thread?

0 Replies
 
Frank Apisa
 
  1  
Reply Sun 8 Jun, 2014 05:46 pm
@Finn dAbuzz,
Quote:
I still cannot see how the statement "I do not support homosexuality or homosexual marriage" can be considered offensive by the reasonable man.


Neither can I, Finn.

But of course, that is not what I was saying. I think we both realize that.
 

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