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  1. 9 points
    As moderators, we have this entire website under our purview. This includes newly deconverted members who are still struggling, christians who are facing crises of faith, and lurkers who might be anywhere on the spectrum. When one member actively seeks to undermine our primary purpose, we have to weigh the needs of everyone against the possibility of offending the one who was deliberately running riot in several forums. If sparing further trauma to already traumatized members means seeming to disrespect the one, I'm comfortable with that. Because my purpose here is reaching out to other recovering ex-christians, not walking on eggshells for the occasional christian apologist. Thanks, TRP
  2. 6 points
    A diagnosis couldn't be done without a full evaluation, but I am a retired Psychiatric Social Worker and can pick up clues from what is posted. I PMed SV and highly suspect he has a mental disorder, but will not disclose what was discussed out of respect for his privacy. The way some people are treated on this site has bothered me previously. We expect respect from them, but at times are just as disrespectful in return. I don't know if anyone else agrees, and maybe I am just an old foggie, but the figure with head up ass is highly disrespectful. How can we demand respect if we don't show it ourselves? I would hope a site that declares to be a support group would have a little more sophistication. And I am somewhat talking to myself, as my sarcasm occasionally comes through. Overall this is a great forum, but this has been my biggest disappointment. Back to mental illness. Not everyone fits into neat categories, or is fully "ill", or fully "well". There are different degrees of mental ilnesses, and different mixtures of features. And many of us have different degrees of "quirks", but would not be classified as mentally ill. The correlation between religion and mental illness was of interest to me from the beginning of my education. As it turns out, the correlation seems to be pretty loose. I think it figures into the situations, but it is the overall family and community atmosphere, and heredity, that seems to matter more. Inconsistency is a HUGE problem, and really effects our development. Did our parents practice what they preached? Did we know what to expect from day to day? Were there deep secrets in the family? Things that were too disturbing to think about, or even admit it happened? Etc. And to complicate situations are things such as brain damage, chemical inbalances, etc. If you think about it, why would a rational thinking person come onto this site and try to bring us back into the fold? And why would they hang around after obviously hitting a brick wall? That is an obvious clue that something is wrong. Why don't they follow the command to shake the dust off their feet As they leave? And are we "using" them to get our "jollies"? To me, the respectful, humane thing to do would be to firmly escort them off the stage when we sense they are not thinking rationally, and become abusive. And sensing irrational thinking does not take a professional. Anyone living in regular society, half way educated, with ability to navigate the web, and believing the earth is flat, is very likely to not be thinking rationally.
  3. 5 points
    “The significance of our lives and our fragile planet is then determined only by our own wisdom and courage. We are the custodians of life's meaning. We long for a Parent to care for us, to forgive us our errors, to save us from our childish mistakes. But knowledge is preferable to ignorance. Better by far to embrace the hard truth than a reassuring fable. If we crave some cosmic purpose, then let us find ourselves a worthy goal.” Carl Sagan
  4. 4 points
    Hi Simone, I am with @TheRedneckProfessor , if you are feeling guilty about how you may have spoken to someone, it is never too late to apologize and explain yourself. I went through a period of my life where I had guilt about how I acted in relationships and even though it was years later, I went back and apologized for my behavior. I am not sure if you are still working in the same location, but if so, I am sure your coworkers would appreciate it if you waited for the appropriate time and tactfully stated how you believe you wronged them or made them feel uncomfortable, apologize, and explain where you mind was at the time and where you are now. Even if they do not accept your apology, which I am inclined to think most people would, you will feel a lot better about mending those relationships.
  5. 4 points
    Guilt is a very big part of the christian religion. It is one of the tools christians use to keep people in the church; and it is very powerful. It is natural to still feel guilt long after leaving the religion; because guilt becomes such a major part of your christian life. Overcoming the guilt you feel may take time; because it has become ingrained into your way of thinking. However, going directly to the people we have wronged, apologizing, and asking for the opportunity to make amends often helps out a great deal.
  6. 4 points
    Be thankful you don’t have a fear of Hell. Many other people are not so lucky. I never really had a strong belief in Hell myself, which made deconversion quite a bit easier. Roght now I’m reading Bart Ehrman’s book “Heaven and Hell”, which talks about how the concept of life after death evolved through the course of history, ancient, Jewish and Christian. It’s a good read!
  7. 3 points
    As you can see, ex christians are very used to this sort of thing. The great disappointment of 1844, yeah, William Miller was a blood relative of my through the paternal side. Predicted the end of the world in 1843 and 1844, before it was finally given up on and is now known as the "Great Disappointment." My Millerite relatives splintered into the SDA church. From then to today, the end times are always right around the corner like a carrot-on-a-stick. Except that it never is the "end times." And they've been wrong every time. What you have to understand is that Revelation was never referring to the distant future. It was referring to contemporary people about contemporary times. What it was about was thinking that the end was near back then, as if the world was on the brink of collapse in the writers time. Take this in if you will: This is compelling evidence. And fits with everything else we know about the book of Revelation. What we're looking at is a situation where the bible, all of it, and especially Revelation, is referring to things contemporary to the now remote PAST. This isn't obvious when you're sitting in a church pew. And it may not be obvious even after you break away. But the deeper you investigate these things, the more obvious it will become if you pay attention to the trail of evidence. Pandemics have come and gone. We happen to have another one in a long line of others taking place now. What they all have in common is that none of them were (1) what was mentioned in Revelation or (2) ushering in the end times as described in the book of Revelation. Politics? That goes without saying. That's even more of a stretch. You have to be careful listening to christians because they will twist and manipulate any information they can get a hold of to try and use as confirmation bias. Yes, there is a political uprising with youth professing social marxism. But christians are trying to use this as confirmation bias when it really isn't anything of the sort. There's nothing in Revelation about Carl Marx, btw, or these social marxists now. And trying to claim that there is, is a huge stretch by anyone trying to do it. I see the videos going around, many of which are dead wrong in demonstrable ways. Post whatever it is that bothers you and I pretty much guarantee it will be debunked.
  8. 3 points
    Welcome to the world of ex christianity spirituality!!! It doesn't have to be anything in particular. An interconnection to all things, the earth and universe abroad, is just the base level for pretty much all spirituality. From there it can take off into some organized form of it, or not. Some prefer to just leave it be in it's natural, base level form. And live independently spiritual minded. You don't have to believe in gods. You don't have to believe in just about anything. You can just feel it. Live it.
  9. 3 points
    ( flings the door open) Mooom! daaad! I’m hoooome! ( studio audience applause) OMG it’s been 6 years since I last visited the ExC Forums! i see some old faces: Margee, Florduh, Redneck Professor! You guys were part of the ExC generation that raised me. Seriously, I started here in like 2007 as a terrified young adult who had just left Bible college and could barely find my vagina with both hands! You guys were with me through awkward virginity losing and coming out to the family and my 4-year “ let’s date a Christian” phase. I took a long break because I was in a really healthy place, comfortable with life as an atheist and just didn’t need the extra support anymore. now I’m returning at age 33 because I’m in a weird place spiritually. Atheism was perfectly fine for 14-ish years and it gave me a great life but I’m moving into more of a non-Christian spirituality now. I’m planning to hang out in the ExChristian Spirituality forum. Join me if you want to talk weird stuff!
  10. 3 points
    Guilt or embarrassment? Hey, we all got sucked into that garbage and did some stuff we regret - so don't' feel alone or stupid or too uncomfortable. The others gave some good advise and I'm sure that when you speak with those you proselytized to and explain that you were under the effects of the indoctrination you will all have a good laugh. I think people generally understand how powerful mind-control techniques can be - especially when they have been refined for years and years. - MOHO (Mind Of His Own)
  11. 3 points
    I'm a fan of Tucker Max and he's been vocal about how much MDMA has helped him in addition to psychotherapy. Tim Ferris is a huge fan of psychedelics for their benefits for PTSD sufferers. In fact, he's pouring a lot of money into research happening in the US, I think. Back in April, I started visiting the little chapel we have at work (hospital) to be alone in silence. I started talking aloud about how stressed and angry and sad I was about COVID and being an essential worker and how I felt like I was barely hanging on. When I had gotten everything off my chest, I started spontaneously talking to myself in the most compassionate, accepting way. I've never done this before. I was saying "It's okay to be scared. It's okay to be upset. Everyone is having a hard time right now. You are so important to me and I'm going to take care of you. I love you and I've got you." And I kept going back to the chapel and doing this every day. Being open about how I felt and giving myself compassion. And I started feeling unconditional love for myself to a degree I've never felt before. Tucker Max describes MDMA as having a huge dose of dopamine dumped into his brain. Just complete safety and unconditional love. And in those moments, I would think "This is what Tucker was describing."
  12. 3 points
    Keep in mind thay your only responsibility here is acknowledging your wrong and apologizing for it. Should they choose not to accept your apology, then you have done everything you can do and you bear no further responsibility.
  13. 3 points
    Something similar happened to me. Similar; but not exact. I suddenly opened up to the desire to become a better person purely for the benefit of being a better person. This, in turn, opened me up to meditation (a practice I had publicly scorned prior) as a means of staying in touch with myself, as I tend to lose myself in work and family. I won't say I feel some sense of overwhelming love for everything and everyone; but I do feel slightly less repulsed by people, places, and things. Joking, of course. I feel more compassion and empathy. In this regard, I think @Weezer might be on to something. I was a very compassionate child before life started kicking my teeth in. Now that I have gotten comfortable with the idea that I am in control of life and life doesn't control me, I can start to express that sensitive little kid who has always been there. He's missed the sun and the smell of freshly plowed fields. Also, he has really weird tastes in music, so fuck him.
  14. 3 points
    I wasn't here when you started, but here's hoping that your homecoming is pleasant and beneficial. Talk of the weird can be good; the very phenomenon of existence can be the weirdest thing of all to contemplate.
  15. 3 points
    Two things about SV... He clearly wanted to fight Satan, but since the guy is rather elusive, he figured we were the closest he could get. It looked like he was commenting on various threads with the goal of getting them moved to the Lions Den. A kind of hack of our forums.
  16. 3 points
    Do you make decisions? Do you pray before each one? I guess my thinking is that God doesn't really have a plan for my life. And if he does but doesnt tell me what that plan is, then his plan don't mean diddly squat to me. Might as well call his plan 'random occurrence' if he isn't going to share that info. I like RNP's view: There is no right or wrong choice. We make a choice and have to live with the result. Walter also has some wisdom: We learn the right choice (or better choice) from our prior mistakes. When someone prays to Jesus for an answer I feel that the person creates his own answer and stamps Jesus' name on it. (Of course we disagree)
  17. 3 points
    Ah. Craniorectal impaction. Difficult condition to treat.
  18. 3 points
    Let me tell the reading audience in general what growing up in the Seventh Day Adventist church was like. It was exactly where your mind is right now. Everything is satan!!! All of it!!! All of science, all secularism, the whole of scholarship and academia and even to the extent of all non-SDA christians are under the deceptive influence of satan!!!!!! The entire world is deceived. Only the chosen few, set aside by jesus going into the last days, have the special ability to read and interpret the bible correctly. And I questioned every bit of the claim. I found it lacking through and through, from beginning to end. It's some of the most ill founded subjective thinking that exists in the world. Objectivity being it's mortal enemy. The problem is that the bible itself doesn't have a leg to stand on. Let alone fast forwarding through centuries and centuries of mythological evolution looking for correct, true, and objective answers. There's no frame of reference to prove it's truth. Not from Genesis. It starts out as contradictory creation myth from the "beginning." Which, doesn't gel with any objective reality. Not the geological and fossil records, not cosmological observation and inquiry, not any of it. So, I realized that on the one hand we have some crack pots claiming the entire world is deceived by an evil entity fallen from heaven, and everything is a conspiracy. When challenged they have no leg to stand on, because they try and stand on the bible, which, folds immediately. And doesn't provide a firm foundation to stand on. On the other hand, we have academic speculation based on many objective evidences that have been discovered and observed. The crack pots say, 'no, that's all just satan.' But they (the same said crack pots) can not substantiate (1) the truth of the bible from the outset or (2) that the very satan they are referring to didn't evolve as a mythical character over many centuries - like a comic book character starting out one away and then growing in detail and depth as people add more and more to the stories. This is the sort of thing that inquisitive christians and questioner's need to start examining if truth is actually their primary concern. An honest devotion to truth seeking and it's path requires working for it. It doesn't just fall in your lap. It's a tough path requiring work on your part! Who is right or wrong? And how can someone try and find out for themselves? They have to study with an objective mind, in depth, and take in all of the relevant information available. If not, then they are up against taking someone at their word. You can take the apologist at his word, and you can equally take me at my word. But I'd advise studying this out all the way through for yourselves. And then revisit the question of who is correct about the bible and about satan, in the first place. Someone here is incorrect. And not just a little incorrect, out of the ball park incorrect........
  19. 3 points
    Debunking never affects True Believers. Peter Popoff is still running his con. Jim Bakker is still selling fake cures. People still think we didn't go to the moon. Even dumber people think the planet is flat. Facts just don't matter to them and no meaningful dialog is possible.
  20. 3 points
    Your personal beliefs are not their business. That you 'owe them your private knowledge or personal feelings' is Christian cultural nonsense. So, you're not being dishonest. You are being self-protective and that is perfectly valid. You have a right to personal privacy. You figure there will be a mess if you tell them so you are holding off. One of the unwritten dysfunctional concepts in Christianity is that you are responsible for other's emotions. Well, you arent. You won't break their hearts, their dysfunctional Christian programming will cause their own emotional distress. Of course, either way you will probably have to deal with their bullshit, emotional pleading, tears, sending you Jesus messages, etc etc ... but you sure wont have to pretend anymore, or feel owned by them.
  21. 2 points
    The Jewish version (Chabad) translate it "expanse." In Genesis 1:20 and Ezekiel 1:22 they also translate it "expanse." I don't know if I'd equate this with "atmosphere." It seems different to "firmament" as well. An expanse can be pretty much anything that is "spread out" over a large area. It could be something like land, air or sea. Josephus claims that there was a sort of crystalline dome(?) placed around the earth at creation. He claims that his knowledge of Greek was limited (as it was frowned upon in his society at the time so he learned other languages later on) so the assumption would be he gathered this from his reading of the texts as a priests as well as whatever traditions may have been floating about. It was probably influenced by whatever ideas about cosmology were in existence but when they came to exist and how they came to influence him aren't something we will probably get to know. What we can learn from this is people are taking our own knowledge of cosmology and doing this same thing. mwc
  22. 2 points
    If we are taking a literal interpretation of Genesis, then the general language, and especially the windows of the firmament opening to release water implies a cosmology such as this:
  23. 2 points
    This stuff is all such bullshit to me. The words that were put into Jesus's mouth regarding his second coming clearly state that some from his generation would still be alive when he returned to earth. Nothing in the bible makes a similarly clear reference to Jesus returning thousands of years in the future. It's a testament to human's ability to use cognitive dissonance to keep moving that time frame forward to whatever the present time is. In fact I think it is critical to making christianity work that the time frame always be at hand even though nothing in the bible makes a compelling case for this.
  24. 2 points
    Even as a Christian I began to think the cannonizers made a mistake by putting the book of Revelations in the Bible. It seemed like it was written by someone taking drugs. It, like the Old Testament, was seldom referenced by the Church of Christ.
  25. 2 points
    Sounds like mob mentality is as old as civilization itself. At least at that time they had an excuse in their need for the metal in the statue. Today, they're just revelling in destruction.
  26. 2 points
    Sounds like you need to fix this at your present company, @Simone, so you'll have a favorable reputation if you find yourself in the job market. Here in the states companies are only supposed to validate employment dates now. This can be gotten around, however. I know because I do this on a regular basis hiring techs and coders for my department. I manage to get to the employee's former direct report (manager) and even some co-workers. If I really feel I will value a perspective employee and there was bad blood with a former company I will confront the applicant and ask them how they feel about the criticism. If they are sorry and understand how their behavior impacted their old company then I'm good. If they bitch and moan and blame blame blame then we're NOT good. I really feel you can fix this and that your boss will appreciate the effort.
  27. 2 points
    You are mistaken, in large part. Study hard.
  28. 2 points
    You know Simone the really important thing is that you figured out you were being tricked and manipulated and were able to get out. Congratulations and good for you! That christian community (cult) you were in used tried and proven mind control methods including guilt and fear to get you out there evangelizing. Getting free of that was no easy task and luckily for everyone you will meet going forward you are no longer recruiting for your cult. That method of recruiting is mostly always ineffective when used on relatively stable personalities meaning the coworkers you witnessed to were probably more anxious to get away from a crazy person than actually harmed by your conversion spiel. If you see someone you know you previously "witnessed" to I'm pretty sure they will be very happy to hear that you have since recognized that you were in a christian cult and are embarrassed that you had become a recruiter for them and that you are now apologetic for attempting to push your beliefs onto them and many others. I'm sorry this whole thing happened to you but you sound like a very kind sensitive person that your coworkers will be fortunate to be able to get to know and spend time with.
  29. 2 points
    Hi. Welcome back! It's nice to meet you.
  30. 2 points
    Hey, welcome back. A lot of the old gang are still around; plus some new ones. I, too, have recently begun to adopt a post-christian spirituality, though it's not as yet very well defined.
  31. 2 points
    Yes; but god's ways are not man's ways. Because he's mysterious and shit.
  32. 2 points
    Thank you! I always thought about this as a believer. How much do I have to give; what does Christianity in the 21st century look like; how much do I have to forgive, and what does that really mean; am I supposed to follow the law as in Matthew; should I follow OT dietary laws; should I really give everything to those who ask; what does that homeless person need: money, food, physical care, mental care? Just endless amount of unknown questions and your potential eternal fate is on the line. Good grief. It is enough to give anyone a stroke who takes it seriously.
  33. 2 points
    SV was informed from the very beginning that preaching, quoting scripture, proselytizing, and such were only allowed in the Den. Several of his posts had to be deleted, due to their content. The very thread you're currently using to plead his case had to be moved into the Den as a direct result of SV's scripture quoting; this thread was originally in the Got Questions forum. I gave SV several warnings, myself, before taking any direct action. He was shown every respect and his case was handled as diplomatically as it could be. Our rules exist to protect those still struggling with deconversion. When the rules are not followed, we have to protect them. If @SilentVoice has any complaints, he's welcome to come back and make his case himself.
  34. 2 points
    The simplicity of the point is lost on so many people.
  35. 2 points
    This isn't meant for anyone in particular, just a general announcement about free speech and this website. This is a privately owned and operated website. The moderation here is extremely liberal in terms of letting people say what they want. Even though, at the end of the day, it is a privately owned and operated website. It's best to think of this website as a group meeting taking place on private property. Everything should be pretty clear in that context as far as where free speech fits into the equation. Carry on.....
  36. 2 points
    @webmdave, PMFJI but I think you may be reading too much into an offhand comment from @Weezer. Maybe 2020 is getting to ya, the same way it’s getting to a lot of us! Weezer and I and many others show our appreciation for this community and your role in it by being financial supporters. Money talks...
  37. 2 points
    Hell is an illusion. It lurks in the shadows. Once you shine a light on it you can see there's nothing there. When I was really young we lived next to some apartments with this old tree. In the day it was fine but at night it was an "evil" tree. My siblings and I would make it a point to avoid this tree, or if we couldn't, we'd get ready and then sprint past it. There was no rhyme nor reason that I was aware of as to why it was an "evil" tree. It just was. Probably because of some kids story we had read or watched. I don't know. We moved away but I visited when I was older and the tree was still there but it wasn't evil anymore. I knew it was the "evil" tree but I had grown old enough to know that trees aren't evil. They're just trees. It was all in my mind. Nothing more. That's hell. It's all in the mind. There's nothing there. You just have to confront and accept it so that it no longer holds power over you. mwc
  38. 2 points
    I really appreciate your perspective, Weezer. That gives me food for thought. Just like mental health is on a continuum, so too (IMHO) is the rationality of Christian belief, especially in the face of so much contradictory (or lacking) evidence. I imagine for some Christians, the mental gymnastics that rational, logical, mentally healthy people have to do in order to maintain their beliefs creates such an internal struggle that it is bound to turn into some form of mental illness until or unless that struggle is resolved. Thus begins a path of either suppressing those thoughts and doubts or exploring them. Both are painful paths. But if God gave us a brain, he should expect us to use it. Furthermore, anything or anyone that demands our full devotion and submission should be able to stand up to scrutiny. Its no wonder some Christians come here angry, defensive, or attacking. Ultimately, its a belief system that seems designed to cause suffering, rather than alleviate it.
  39. 2 points
    Edgarcito, When it comes to this simple plan, the prime flaw in your thinking is this. You are confusing things which you subjectively believe to be true with things that are objectively true, whether you believe they are or not. https://www.aa.com.tr/en/africa/burundis-president-died-from-covid-19-reports/1878252 Pierre Nkurunziza made the same error and paid the price for it. He subjectively believed that god had cleared the covid-19 virus from Burundi's skies. Things that are objectively real, like the covid-19 virus, don't care about anyone's subjective beliefs. Please consider reassessing your thinking. Thank you. Walter.
  40. 2 points
  41. 2 points
    When it comes to Teleological thinking creationists, science-deniers and conspiracy theorists haven't cornered the market. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fine-tuned_universe Those Christians who do accept science often appeal to the Fine-Tuned universe argument in their apologetics. (See section 6 of this Wiki page.) Which just goes to show that, even if you accept or deny science, teleological thinking is deeply-ingrained in your psyche. And it seems to be present very early on in our development, as opposed to being an acquired characteristic. https://psycnet.apa.org/record/2004-19055-003 http://nm.cms-devl.bu.edu/cdl/files/2013/08/1999_Kelemen_Scope.pdf http://cognitionandculture.net/wp-content/uploads/1999_Kelemen_FunctionsGoalsIntentions.pdf https://psycnet.apa.org/record/1999-01076-008 https://www.grin.com/document/356506 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5296364/ I'd hazard (without any kind of expertise) that in adults, who are aware of their mortality, it's a kind comfort-seeking policy of terror management. Better to believe that reality and your life has meaning, rather than face up to the possibility that you and everything else actually mean nothing. But quite why it seems to be something we are born with, I don't know. One thing I do know, however, is that both a science-denying creationist and a science-embracing Christian would give the same reason as to why children think teleologically. God did it. Thank you. Walter.
  42. 2 points
    I found a documentary that does a really good job explaining the origins of Christianity and some of the theories going around in scholarly circles. It is clean, entertaining, and chock full of good information: https://deepdivedocumentaries.com/ You can stream the documentary on the website as a 72-hour rental at $4.99, or buy it for $24.99. Enjoy!
  43. 2 points
    I'm just a layman, but it appears that he has his head up his ass.
  44. 2 points
    Relevant, much? https://www.gotquestions.org/morning-star.html https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucifer
  45. 2 points
    Butterflies are the means by which caterpillars can transport themselves over great distances. This enables, for example, monarch butterflies to spend the winter in Mexico but come to my garden in Manitoba in June and July to eat from milkweed plants. And the butterflies just have to live long enough to lay eggs. That's it. That's all.
  46. 2 points
    Science draws closer to the truth by admitting its mistakes and adopting new theories. Religion claims to already have the truth and refuses to admit its errors.
  47. 2 points
    Just curious, SV . . .do you trust medical science (which is also ever-changing)? Are you the sort of Christian who only believes certain sciences are to be trusted or do you shun science altogether because all if it is ever-changing as new discoveries are made?
  48. 2 points
    "Satan everywhere" was very popular with several people in the Pentecostal church I attended in the 90s. People talked a lot about being a "Prayer Warrior" which came with Ephesians 6 putting on the armor of God bullshit. One lady in particular had us praying against "The Enemy" and his "principalities" often. I think the pastor who didnt want people to be fearful and uncomfortable in his church, one day, as a sidenote to his sermon said something like, "I've heard that some people think we are in some kind of epic battle of good vs evil, or that Satan is as powerful as Jesus. Well, that's false. Jesus is all powerful and Satan is not. Jesus already has the victory, blah blah blah." It was sweet that he basically shut this nutcase up with her Satan fear. One facebook friend a while back mentioned "The Enemy" so apparently that nonsense is still being propagated by fundyland. They mentioned the Deep State as well but I didnt ask them about flat earth. lol. It seems that if Jesus is looking out for his sheep then he would not let his sheep be harmed by "The Enemy." You wouldn't have to concern yourself with "The Enemy." And if God allows Satan to wreak havoc in your life so you will 'turn to God' then God is "The Enemy." But I dont think any of the characters of the bible are real so this is all hypothetical imo. Kind of like talking about what Spiderman should do.
  49. 2 points
    You have demonstrated time and again you are unwilling to listen. I studied Jewish Satanic apologetics? Have you completely lost your mind....well, based on your BS, probably. You can quote mine the Bible all you want, but as I have stated before, you are ignorant to the history of the Bible, who wrote it, how the canon was developed, or the demonstrable changing of ideas and theology throughout the whole collection of writing. I am not going to say this again, I think it can be argued that Satan, as modern day Christians define him, is foreign to the earliest theology in the Old Testament. Satan's introduction in the Old Testament was one who tested people and brought their shortcomings before God. He was not in charge of anything! It was not until later theology was being worked out, by humans, to where he got the status he does today. Last I am going to say on it.
  50. 2 points
    I’m way late to this conversation... haven’t been on the site at all lately. I really think that if my wife weren’t so afraid of Hell she might have deconverted right along with me 8 years ago, or 3 years ago when I was outed and ended up agreeing to an online study with a preacher. The preacher’s answers to my questions were inadequate, and she could see that. It really scared her that she could see that there wasn’t a good reason to believe! Belief in Hell kept her in, and led her to come up with mental tricks to re-convince herself about the Bible. Fortunately for me, I never had that problem. I believed in Heaven and Hell because the New Testament talked about them. (But the OT doesn’t! That’s why the Sadducees didn’t believe in them.) It was just mental assent, though — I never imagined what it would be like. I never looked forward to Heaven even though I believed I would go there. I don’t get excited about going to real places, either! I might be a happier person if I looked forward to doing this or that, going here or there — I don’t know. But at least being this was made deconvert8ng easy.

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