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3 hours ago, ag_NO_stic said:

Have y'all been reading the thread on his forums? He IS reading our testimonies and he IS trying to understand. More than one person has said they had not heard our side presented this way before and that they feel they are learning from us. Many have sincerely apologized for the ways we've suffered. Yes, we have real and serious wounds from our old faith. But there was a time when we were believers and we did and thought the same things to/about people.  I'm not sure I agree with y'all's assessment on this one, he's asking you politely to consider how you're acting. 

 

William and his group are good people. They just believe differently than we do. I think they are happy in their belief like we are happy in our non-belief.

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15 minutes ago, midniterider said:

 

William and his group are good people. They just believe differently than we do. I think they are happy in their belief like we are happy in our non-belief.

 

I agree.  I was fascinated by some of the dialog between our @Joshpantera and him.  Two guys who are alike in many ways who have ended up on opposite teams, so to speak.  It’s good to see the respect between members of these teams though. Your own input helped with that over there, by the way.  Just goes to show though how religion can really divide people who might otherwise be friends and allies. 

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Excellent posts, all of you! Very well stated. 

 

@Christforums

 

I told you that the issue would be dealt with. And as you can see there are members here interested in having civil dialogue with you and you're audience if they wish to stop by. We're not the bad guys and gals, even though it may have looked as though it was going that way. Ex-christianity can be about going buck wild, and / or pursing pure evil. There's no ex-christian dogma, it could mean almost anything as long as it's ex-christian.  

 

But more often than not, that isn't the case. These are mostly stand up individuals who do their best live good lives and do the right thing, helping others. That's why we're here as a matter of fact, to try and help others - each in our own respective ways. People volunteer their time to answer questions, welcome new members, talk through emotional struggles and try and apply sound logic and reason to any given situation. Thank you for reading through our testimonies section and making the effort to try and understand what's behind some of the sore feelings and aggression. I appreciate you taking the time and effort to try and better understand what's going on. 

 

 

 

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6 hours ago, midniterider said:

 

William and his group are good people. They just believe differently than we do. I think they are happy in their belief like we are happy in our non-belief.

There are many, many Christians who are good people. I try to keep in mind that it's not them that cause harm, so much as their beliefs, and very often, the behaviour that this belief results in ("go ye therefore and teach all nations")

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On 1/19/2019 at 3:21 AM, Christforums said:

 

I am not an apologist.

 

Question for you both, do you think people sometimes become the very thing they hate in others?

 

 

You may not consider yourself an apologist, but you are defending/preaching a form of christianity.  I don't see a big difference.  I am agnostic, so I don't deny there might be some force, energy, spirit, etc out there we have yet to understand, but after over 60 years of study I haven't found it in the Bible.  Or in other organized religions.  I don't see that any of them have a base to build a supernatural, supersticious religion on.  And that is what you, and all religions with infallible deities and holy spirits are doing.  When you look at the big picture of ALL RELIGIONS, and God's, and look at their histories, and how they changed and evolved through the years, just like the Christian God, the arguments for them just dissolve.  At least they did for me.  And I began by sincerely praying for God to help me discern truth.  I don't see that your faith has a foundation to rest on.

 

From my understanding, the form of Christianity you are proposing, has, for lack of a better word, a magical quality about it.  That a force, energy, or spirit outside of self can work on a person, to change a person, along with your help.  Is this true, or not?

 

As to your question, I wouldn't necessarily call it hate.  I believe people sometimes rant and rave, or obsess about things, or characteristics they see in others that they fear in themselves.  It may not at the time be a conscious fear, but is lying underneath their conscious mind.  It is called denial.  Like the married preacher who rants against extramarital sex, but later on is caught with a prostitute.  Or like the person who comes here convinced they can bring us back to the "fold", or to a different and better fold.  If you hang arond here very long, I predict you will become one of us.  Will that be the work of the Holy spirit?

 

 

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6 hours ago, TruthSeeker0 said:

There are many, many Christians who are good people. I try to keep in mind that it's not them that cause harm, so much as their beliefs, and very often, the behaviour that this belief results in ("go ye therefore and teach all nations")

 

I think a lot of times new disciples are overly zealous. They haven't been or graduated from "discipleship" and set out in "Evangelism". Along the way they think, hey, the Holy Spirit will give some matrix style download of information immediately, and when my mouth is opened the Spirit speaks. Such people have no problem blaming the Holy Spirit for horrible interpretation.

 

No doubt the good news is to reach all tribes, tongues, and nations. But how has the Gospel message been twisted in legalism, in works righteousness or performance based salvation? If anyone has "tried" to display faith and failed, you'll probably by experience testify that faith cannot be faked. Faith alone does not save Christians. Faith in the object of faith, if defined as an act of the believer does not save either as that is a work of man. It is the object of faith (Jesus Christ) that saves. Faith is actually a gift and fruit of the Holy Spirit (regeneration). Without this regeneration and apart from God then faith is a work of man.

 

What is harmful? Serious question from a societal approach. Some say religion, and I think false religion is very harmful. But here's the rub, many of the testimonies here have evidenced that they haven't actually rejected Jesus Christ. They've rejected their personal or mental projection on God. They've rejected cults, false Christ, false Prophets, and false Teachers. Back on what is harmful, likewise, and I'm using this as an example, how has society come to terms with supporting a delusion where someone may pretend to be something else. I've seen one article on a man that is cosmetically transforming himself to a parrot. Another that has transformed herself into a living Barbie and had ribs removed to shape her. Let alone the T in the LGBT, should we support such a delusion which may result in physical castration or chemical castration on children?

 

Well certain states think so and current legislation is making its way up where it is illegal to speak out against it through various media. How badly does anyone want to destroy or abolish the teachings of Jesus Christ? Morality is not the prime objective of Christianity, but it may very well be a secondary benefit to a nation.

 

Open to anyone's thoughts and questions.

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29 minutes ago, Weezer said:

I don't see that your faith has a foundation to rest on.

 

Perhaps not for anyone else outside of myself. The gift of faith may well be given only to me and it was only enough to result in justification from Jesus Christ.

 

As I already stated, man may try to emulate regeneration and what is necessary for salvation. But if so, are we not doing exactly what others have been victimized by? The works of man rather than God?

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You still are not getting the drift of what we are saying. Whether you consider yoursef an apologist or not, go to the "Lions Den", and the topic, "Questions for Christian Apologist."  Until you are willing to answer those questions, we likely have little to talk about.  

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20 minutes ago, Weezer said:

You still are not getting the drift of what we are saying. Whether you consider yoursef an apologist or not, go to the "Lions Den", and the topic, "Questions for Christian Apologist."  Until you are willing to answer those questions, we likely have little to talk about.  

 

I'm convinced that nobody understood the question as intended by the author. Instead of asking the actual author of the question for clarification everyone else wants the author to understand their drift after the time of the author's departure. I'm already going against what I stated only because a moderator has enticed me to come back.

 

When I reflect on Scripture, I note that people failed to understand even Jesus Christ. Why would I think that everyone understands me? And you say that I don't get the drift of what you're saying? Frankly, I don't have enough interest because you're too busy trying to send me to the Lion's den. That is the first obstacle in our communication. Is that the place Daniel was sent, or is that the historical place where Christians were mauled in the early centuries? Or is that simply an original place with no allusion to anything else other than for a group to pile up on a believer and be insulted and called every name in the book as has been demonstrated? You're a person of evidence, right? What does the evidence point to?

Just curious, do you realize I'm a real person, a human behind a keyboard and monitor? I'm someone with life experiences, a father of 5, and someone that struggles as much from Christian persecution as you experienced from the hardships of a religion.

 

You'll have to excuse me if I don't drag other threads into this topic. This was meant as nothing more than an introduction and a friendly invite.

 

I'm open to questions and your thoughts.

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2 minutes ago, Weezer said:

 Until you are willing to answer those questions, we likely have little to talk about.  

 

Perhaps  I spoke too soon.  I understand your attraction to Jesus.  In a way I consider myself a "Jesus-ite."  Not that I consider him divine, but that if he existed, he was a wise person who probably had some influence of eastern thinking.  A humanitarian who saw that the thing needed to save humans from other humans, was to love neighbor as self.  He was a bold man who faced up to the legalism of the Jews.  He honestly believed he was the savior because that was was he was told from birth.  If he was an actual person, I believe the Catholics, who determined what went into the New Testament, embellished the story.  And his message of love was not original.  But it is a great "mind set" to latch onto.

 

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2 minutes ago, Weezer said:

 

Perhaps  I spoke too soon.  I understand your attraction to Jesus.  In a way I consider myself a "Jesus-ite."  Not that I consider him divine, but that if he existed, he was a wise person who probably had some influence of eastern thinking.  A humanitarian who saw that the thing needed to save humans from other humans, was to love neighbor as self.  He was a bold man who faced up to the legalism of the Jews.  He honestly believed he was the savior because that was was he was told from birth.  If he was an actual person, I believe the Catholics, who determined what went into the New Testament, embellished the story.  And his message of love was not original.  But it is a great "mind set" to latch onto.

 

 

I acknowledge what you believe, and I thank you for clarifying yourself.

 

Enjoy,

William

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21 minutes ago, Christforums said:

 

I'm open to questions and your thoughts.

 

 

The questions and thoughts I have for you are in the Lions Den.   I originally wrote the Questions for Apologist and put them in the Questions section, but a moderator put them there.  If you would rather not go there, then I think I understand.  

 

If you want to carry this any further, it will need to wait.  It is late, and I am about to fall asleep.

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6 hours ago, Christforums said:

When I reflect on Scripture, I note that people failed to understand even Jesus Christ.

 

Alan Watt's certainly agrees with that sentiment, William. But in a way that I don't know if you properly understand yet: 

 

 

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6 hours ago, Christforums said:

Just curious, do you realize I'm a real person, a human behind a keyboard and monitor? I'm someone with life experiences, a father of 5, and someone that struggles as much from Christian persecution as you experienced from the hardships of a religion.

When you look closely you’ll always find it; victim mentality. You’re no victim. 

 

Is that the place Daniel was sent, or is that the historical place where Christians were mauled in the early centuries? Or is that simply an original place with no allusion to anything else other than for a group to pile up on a believer and be insulted and called every name in the book as has beendemonstrated?“

 

Here it is again. Victim mentality. This guy has no respect at all. I know I said I’d be chill and allow debate but I’m pretty much done with it. If the Jesus isn’t allowed on here this guy certainly shouldn’t be either. 

 

You’ve been asked to go to the Lion’s Den out of respect for people who don’t want to be sneaky evangelized. We don’t give a rats ass whether you want to go there or not. 

 

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Just throwing my $.02 cent into the pot. Religion is based on emotion not intellect. And emotion has proven to be far more powerful than education for many people. Religion is all about “beliefs” aka faith, not evidence, science, logic, or reason. Religion teaches belief without evidence is a desirable virtue, even though Thomas required proof. 

 

Anytime people are told to take anything on faith, rather than evidence, that should send up red flags. 

 

 

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12 hours ago, Christforums said:

Instead of asking the actual author of the question for clarification everyone else wants the author to understand their drift after the time of the author's departure.

This is false.  @ag_NO_stic asked you for clarification and even called you out for seeming to ignore her.  I, and several other members, told you that your question was improperly framed and needed to be rephrased.  You were given the opportunity to clarify.  You opted not to.

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9 hours ago, Christforums said:

 

I'm open to questions and your thoughts.

 

Good morning.  Please answer this question.  What do you think will be accomplished by participating on this forum?

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9 hours ago, Christforums said:

and someone that struggles as much from Christian persecution as you experienced from the hardships of a religion

 

Been on both sides of this fence.  

 

Um, no.  No way.  There is sooooo little real actual Christian persecution.  Get back to me when your child gets fired for being gay, when you are immediately disqualified from being elected to major office when being open about one's non faith, your child is not respected for marrying the one they love simply because they are the same sex, and when you experience most all of one's lifetime social relationships shun you and your kids for your lack of belief.

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4 hours ago, TheRedneckProfessor said:

This is false.  @ag_NO_stic asked you for clarification and even called you out for seeming to ignore her.  I, and several other members told you that your question was improperly framed and needed to be rephrased.  You were given the opportunity to clarify.  You opted not to.

 

This is true lol

 

1 hour ago, ConsiderTheSource said:

 

Been on both sides of this fence.  

 

Um, no.  No way.  There is sooooo little real actual Christian persecution.  Get back to me when your child gets fired for being gay, when you are immediately disqualified from being elected to major office when being open about one's non faith, your child is not respected for marrying the one they love simply because they are the same sex, and when you experience most all of one's lifetime social relationships shun you and your kids for your lack of belief.

 

This is also true. As a Christian, I believed I was "persecuted" because other people were like "You believe god killed himself to repay himself to save you from things he could just decide don't bug him? weird. Yeah, not gonna believe that." Now that I've left, I can see clearly how little people who aren't believers care about the Christian faith.  We're not persecuting you just because you want the whole country run with the rules that you apply to your own life. We're not persecuting you by not converting or agreeing. Just don't get all up in our face about it with your faith, you know? 

 

_____

 

William ( @Christforums ), you were not actively persecuted here for your faith, you sought us out on our forum and made comments about "some" having "third grade level education on Christianity" without having any idea what some of us have been through. You can't come in, make comments like that, throw in a "God Bless" knowing how we'd probably feel about it, and then behave as though we've just victimized you without having done anything wrong.  

 

Just consider our side if only for a moment. It's easy, from your perspective, to say that you came in and gave a friendly invitation and "that's all" and we "just attacked you" for "no reason" which is not really what happened. We have this forum for ex-christians, one of which you are not; people to find healing and community among other people with similar paths and wounds. We also made a subforum for proselytizing, instead of banning you, because we don't want to be those kind of people. So we direct believers who wish to interact with us to the lion's den where some of our comfortably deconverted will tackle the "same ole, same ole" material. Very often, our refusal to "play along" turns into "an attack." But, we aren't seeking these people out to just bully or persecute them for their faith, we are defending our own beliefs and how we got there from "friendly greetings" that are often "you'll burn forever" messages wrapped up with an "I'm better than you" bow. We receive regular "friendly greetings" from people who "aren't here to evangelize" (nearly indistinguishable from your initial one) and then, after we ask questions that can be difficult to answer or give unexpected responses, our guests are "called away by God" (with or without some kind of warning about eternal torment). It starts to look really disingenuous in our eyes. With your greeting specifically, there was a condescending tone that we could not have known you meant as friendly until we interacted more with you. 

 

This really does appear to be miscommunication all around. Can't we just all agree to set aside some of the aggressiveness, put down the fists and dialogue?

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6 hours ago, Geezer said:

 

Anytime people are told to take anything on faith, rather than evidence, that should send up red flags. 

 

 

There are many red flags here.  I believe rational dialogue with William is futile at this point, and further attempts will only bring more frustration.

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1 hour ago, Weezer said:

There are many red flags here.  I believe rational dialogue with William is futile at this point, and further attempts will only bring more frustration.

 

Least we forget how we viewed the world when we were Christians. Our Christian world revolved around Jesus, God, and Paul. They were the truth, everything else was of Satan. Atheists were agents of the Devil and they spewed nothing from their mouths but lies, falsehoods, and immorally. The physical world was Evil and ruled by Satan, the master of lies and deceit, and his Demons.

 

The Spiritual world, ruled by God and his angels, was our promised home,  but only if we remained faithful. The real truth terrifies Christians so they are not about to listen to anything we have to day. 

 

We can provide all the evidence in the world, and thousands of testimonies that relate the horors of religion, but it will fall on the deaf ears of Christians because they fear us, because they believe we are agents of Satan Himself.

 

Make no mistake about it William’s goal is to bring some lost sheep back into the fold. He isn’t here to learn anything, because he’s on a mission. 

 

 

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38 minutes ago, Geezer said:

 

Make no mistake about it William’s goal is to bring some lost sheep back into the fold. He isn’t here to learn anything, because he’s on a mission. 

 

 

But I am not sure he understands how to navigate his mission. 

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3 hours ago, Geezer said:

Make no mistake about it William’s goal is to bring some lost sheep back into the fold. He isn’t here to learn anything, because he’s on a mission. 

 

Possibly. But he's said that salvation is basically determined by god and carried out by the holy spirit. Hence no interest in apologetic's or arguing. Aside from simply interacting and leaving everything up to the holy spirit, I don't know exactly what to make of it. William mentioned to me that after reading around he sees a lot of problems with apologist's and the directions they have taken - suggesting that the whole thing needs to be reconsidered. 

 

Indeed, there's myriad reasons as to why apologetic's needs to be completely reconsidered.

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2 hours ago, Joshpantera said:

 

But he's said that salvation is basically determined by god and carried out by the holy spirit.

 

 

I never really studied the predestination theories.  Does his have a little different twist to it?  It always seemed crazy to me.  If you believe in a system like that, it's a guessing game as to whether you will be saved.  Sounds like a system to drive insecure people crazy.  Or am I missing something?

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Calvinist wannabes are creepy.

 

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