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13 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

 

As did I. His OP was about a debate so I thought this one was confident and had good arguments. Sadly it wasn't so. Seemed to be a lot of presuppositions and assumptions and not much meat to back it up.

If I had to guess, I'd say it's likely christforums recently listened to a sermon, or watched a YouTube video concerning the evil nature of man and the claim was put forth that "atheists" (to include all manner of non-believers) have no other option but to reject god because sin.  The video, or sermon came complete with this little parlor trick where, if the questions are phrased just right, the "atheists" will end up damning themselves through their own answers.

 

The problem christforums had was that we didn't play along like the actors in the video, or the imaginary "atheists" described in the sermon.  christforums' frustration could be seen as early as his second response to me when he remarked, "the only problem I see is in not addressing the question."  His frustration only grew thereafter; because few of us would give him the kind of responses he needed for his parlor trick to work.

 

Looking back over the thread, it is clear that he was angling toward the topic of man's evil nature from the very beginning.  But he wanted to lead us into it by asking us to consider why rejecting god was our only option (a "fact" he seemed profoundly convinced of).  Without the correct responses from us, though, he was left essentially trying to herd cats into a stable.

 

I'm not sure how well he'd have fared had he hung around a bit longer; but it seems clear to me that whatever confidence he had was not in god, or in his own ability to debate; rather, it was in nothing more than a slight-of-hand magic show that depended too heavily on audience participation.

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3 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

 

Yes, unless there were mitigating factors (E.g. an audience was watching/listening and would possibly benefit from the exchange.) I think it was Hitchen's who said that he didn't debate Christians with the hope of changing the interlocutors mind, but that maybe just one person in the audience would question their beliefs. However if the goal is to get to the truth of something and one party is not willing to budge then conversation is pointless as you can't get to truth if you already presuppose you are right.

 

What are your thoughts?

 

I was referring to a potential budget meeting. Where one party may say up front that they're unwilling to budge and the other party gets up and walks out. 🤣 Just for a funny aside....

 

 

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When William first posted and asked for debater's I thought he was the debating type. I didn't think he'd fold so easily. I literally suggested he go to the Den in the morning and when I returned home from work he was gone. But he did say that he happened across this site on a google search and hasn't had interaction with people like this before. It's possible that he actually didn't see any of this coming and hasn't any experience with going head to head with atheists and the usual outcomes.

 

 

 

 

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10 minutes ago, Joshpantera said:

When William first posted and asked for debater's I thought he was the debating type. I didn't think he'd fold so easily. I literally suggested he go to the Den in the morning and when I returned home from work he was gone. But he did say that he happened across this site on a google search and hasn't had interaction with people like this before. It's possible that he actually didn't see any of this coming and hasn't any experience with going head to head with atheists and the usual outcomes.

 

 

 

 

If we're lucky, maybe he'll come back after he's licked his wounds for a while.  Hopefully, he'll be better prepared next time.  Hell, if we're really lucky, he'll bring along some of his friends from his website.

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1 hour ago, TheRedneckProfessor said:

If I had to guess, I'd say it's likely christforums recently listened to a sermon, or watched a YouTube video concerning the evil nature of man and the claim was put forth that "atheists" (to include all manner of non-believers) have no other option but to reject god because sin.  The video, or sermon came complete with this little parlor trick where, if the questions are phrased just right, the "atheists" will end up damning themselves through their own answers.

 

The problem christforums had was that we didn't play along like the actors in the video, or the imaginary "atheists" described in the sermon.  christforums' frustration could be seen as early as his second response to me when he remarked, "the only problem I see is in not addressing the question."  His frustration only grew thereafter; because few of us would give him the kind of responses he needed for his parlor trick to work.

 

Looking back over the thread, it is clear that he was angling toward the topic of man's evil nature from the very beginning.  But he wanted to lead us into it by asking us to consider why rejecting god was our only option (a "fact" he seemed profoundly convinced of).  Without the correct responses from us, though, he was left essentially trying to herd cats into a stable.

 

I'm not sure how well he'd have fared had he hung around a bit longer; but it seems clear to me that whatever confidence he had was not in god, or in his own ability to debate; rather, it was in nothing more than a slight-of-hand magic show that depended too heavily on audience participation.

 

Lemme just say this, I really agree with this assessment and I think we all picked up on it really, really quickly. It was very disingenuous, in my opinion. I actually think he was less tolerable than usual, because he was acting more smug than average. Sorry if I'm the one @ThereAndBackAgain is referring to, I certainly didn't mean to come across as hostile. I just can't stand when people come in, shit all over our experience, tell me I was never a christian, act like they're better because they "hung on longer," and then act like we're attacking them, playing victim, or being unreasonable for refusing to play the game.

 

WHY do they all do the same thing? "I'm not going to thump my bible at you, [insert some joke about not biting or being that bad]" *proceeds to go to Lion's den instead of some other place to talk about their faith lol, where they talk about what their bible says about our hateful rebellion and sin*, *finds some reason, like god calling them away or being persecuted, tuck tail and leave*

 

This one was fast for sure.

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12 minutes ago, TheRedneckProfessor said:

If we're lucky, maybe he'll come back after he's licked his wounds for a while.  Hopefully, he'll be better prepared next time.  Hell, if we're really lucky, he'll bring along some of his friends from his website.

 

Yes indeed. Below is what I told him: 

 

We can see what the others think about it. But you're always free to start up a topic here and link your audience to it. You're also free to have your audience join here. The only rule about that is that proselytizing oriented discussions are to be held in the Lion's Den. We have people who are recovering from awful christian experiences and we don't allow christians to just run wild proselytizing or annoying people across the board. If anyone does that we'll move the topic or post to the Lion's Den and it will show as moved.

 

I don't know if he linked the discussion or not. If he did then the offer still stands for his audience to come and interact here, whether for proselytizing or otherwise. 

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13 minutes ago, ag_NO_stic said:

This one was fast for sure.

We have had a few really decent christians over the years.  Ironhorse, End3... there was a guy named Gus several years ago who didn't stay around for more than a week or so; but I thoroughly enjoyed my interactions with him.  He was very genuine and sincere and kept his comments strictly to the points being made, without judgement, smugness, or condescension. 

 

Unfortunately, most christians follow the same pattern.  We saw it with Miriam, and again with christforums.  If one had a mind to, one could go back through the years to revisit the interactions we've had with thumbelina, funguyrye, stevebennett, and others; the same pattern emerges every time.

 

Sad, really.  They're supposed to be embued with power from an omniscient, omnipotent god; but they R-U-N-N-O-F-T any time the questions get too hard.

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15 minutes ago, Joshpantera said:

 

Yes indeed. Below is what I told him: 

 

 

 

 

I don't know if he linked the discussion or not. If he did then the offer still stands for his audience to come and interact here, whether for proselytizing or otherwise. 

I glanced over his website yesterday evening to see if he referenced his experience with us anywhere on it.  I didn't see anything at the time; but maybe he's just waiting until he can get his story spun the right way.  Live in hope, right?

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1 hour ago, Joshpantera said:

 

I was referring to a potential budget meeting. Where one party may say up front that they're unwilling to budge and the other party gets up and walks out. 🤣 Just for a funny aside....

 

 

 

Ohhh haha. In that case it's both sides not willing to budge. 🤣

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13 minutes ago, LogicalFallacy said:

 

Ohhh haha. In that case it's both sides not willing to budge. 🤣

That's why they call it a budge-t meeting.

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yep.JPG

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Christians seem to have a difficult time relating to people outside their religious environment. Their environment demands likemindedness and obedience. When they venture out into the real world where their beliefs are challenged, or worse ridiculed, they don’t seem to know how to handle that.

 

That, and the fact many of them consider non-believers to be immoral and evil, and that puts them on edge and makes them defensive. There are two distinctive worlds on our planet. One is the reality of the secular world as it actually exist and the other one is the religious world where gods, angels, and demons exist. Those two worlds are incompatible. 

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1 hour ago, ag_NO_stic said:

 

Lemme just say this, I really agree with this assessment and I think we all picked up on it really, really quickly. It was very disingenuous, in my opinion. I actually think he was less tolerable than usual, because he was acting more smug than average. Sorry if I'm the one @ThereAndBackAgain is referring to, I certainly didn't mean to come across as hostile. I just can't stand when people come in, shit all over our experience, tell me I was never a christian, act like they're better because they "hung on longer," and then act like we're attacking them, playing victim, or being unreasonable for refusing to play the game.

 

WHY do they all do the same thing? "I'm not going to thump my bible at you, [insert some joke about not biting or being that bad]" *proceeds to go to Lion's den instead of some other place to talk about their faith lol, where they talk about what their bible says about our hateful rebellion and sin*, *finds some reason, like god calling them away or being persecuted, tuck tail and leave*

 

This one was fast for sure.

Tbh I wasn't surprised that he folded. People who come in here with a high confidence in their beliefs and a smugness sort of reveal that they don't actually have a questioning or open mind, and I think most of them are completely unprepared for what they're about to get....after his intro I actually started to feel a bit of pity for him because I thought if he headed to the Lion's Den he likely didn't have much preparation at all. If you're questioning or open minded usually you show a bit more humility and you don't include presuppositions in your statements that already reveal your position.

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I'm not really a skilled debater, so I didn't chime in. But what you guys did was fun to watch. :lmao:

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15 hours ago, TheRedneckProfessor said:

Unfortunately, I was divorced and remarried, which, according to the assemblies of god, means I cannot lead ministry.  I knew I should have murdered when I had the chance.  They'd have forgiven me for that; but, woe unto the man who's had two wives.

Apparently, king Solomon had a huge harem--and god rewarded him with riches and wisdom. Hmmmmm...wonder if that still works? :D

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12 hours ago, ThereAndBackAgain said:

 What I did do as a Christian was listen to debates between Christians and atheists.  After starting out rooting for the Christians I found myself - to my chagrin - agreeing with the atheists more often than not.  And eventually I joined their ranks.  

That's what happened to me...I bumped into this sight , IDK, 10-12 years ago, something like that. From time to time when searching for topics this sight would be in the search results and I would pop in again and read some stuff...at first it made me angry or uncomfortable or ..other not positive emotions. Some of it hurt my feelings. But then I started saying, Oh yeah, you know I question, think, feel that too. Or wow that makes me nervous or scares me. But I kept reading anyway! And , well here I am deconverting.

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12 hours ago, LogicalFallacy said:

My first question with a debate is are you willing to change your mind, and is there anything that would? If the answer is no then debate is pointless.

 

I don't think this quite exhausts the list of reasons why one might choose to debate. I might debate a topic even when I expect that neither myself nor my interlocutors are likely to change our minds, if...

 

- I think I might learn something new (even if it doesn't change my overall perspective).

- I'm interested in understanding better how other people think about the topic, or in trying to understand more precisely where I think they are wrong

- I'm interested in refining my ability to present a particular type of argument, or in figuring out better ways to communicate my view on the topic

- I'm interested in presenting information which others might find useful (not necessarily the people debating)

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17 minutes ago, Derek said:

Apparently, king Solomon had a huge harem--and god rewarded him with riches and wisdom. Hmmmmm...wonder if that still works? :D

Given that I have neither riches nor wisdom, I have my doubts.

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I see no purpose in debates. I’ve never heard of a debate changing anyone’s mind. Debates tend to enforce what people already believe and both sides always seem to think their side won. 

 

The Church of Christ loved to debate representatives from denominations. And they always believed they won those debates, mostly because they only heard what they wanted to hear. 

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I tend to prefer discussions to debates but the same ideas probably apply, except maybe the expectation that it's about changing people's minds? But I also suppose my criteria for participation is whether or not I find something interesting and not whether I think it fulfills some other purpose :P I would definitely have given up on internet message boards a long time ago if I thought the goal was to change people's minds on anything.

 

I think it's clear though that people do change their minds about all kinds of things, it's just that it usually happens slowly over time rather than some eureka moment as the result of a single interaction. So maybe I should say "if the goal was to change people's minds in an immediately visible way".

 

That's probably especially true dealing with something like religious belief, where it involves really fundamental aspects of a person's worldview, the kind that we tend to take for granted. Christians may have trouble communicating with non-Christians not just because they're socialized into obedience and conformity but also because those conversations involve challenging ideas we tend to take as a given. Christforums described belief in the existence of God as axiomatic, for example. I think the belief functions that way for a lot of people, it's just something that seems self-evident given their socialization. Maybe the difference between "obedience" and "socialization" is like six of one and half dozen of another but I think it's worth remembering that those socialization processes are inescapable for all of us. It's not really some special failing of Christians that they have unchallenged or naive beliefs which they take mostly for granted. That's kind of the default state.

 

One of the fun things about having discussions with people with very different beliefs is that those conversations make those assumptions stand out more, providing opportunities to actually interrogate them and think about them more deeply. If you take broadening of intellectual horizons as a humanist goal then this is pretty useful, so much so that you could call it another potentially useful purpose for debate. Notwithstanding the fact that people are often bad at taking advantage of the opportunity

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13 minutes ago, midniterider said:

christforums' response:

 

 

"Hello ExChristian,

 

It stands to reason that if God does in fact miraculously heal today then God heals all manners of illness including severed limbs. Unfortunately, faith healers are rampant on various Christian publications claiming one healing after another. I've even seen one grow out a limb that was shorter than another!

 

Now the problem with this reasoning is that it supposes miraculous healing continue today. And to compound the issue there are Christians that claim it not only does but there are those in the church today that possess such ability. However, certain signs such as healing were used in Biblical times to authenticate offices such as Prophet, Christ and Apostle. Since those offices are no longer open today such signs are not given to authenticate the person claiming to hold such office. Offices such as Prophet, Christ, and Apostle were responsible for the revelatory process which developed Scripture.

 

We are told to beware of false Christs and Prophets and unfortunately Christianity has no shortage today. These very same people when faced with proving ones claim by using a sign which in essence was to actually prove or authenticate an office pass it off as lack of faith or works on part of the sick. This has caused all kinds of frustrations, doubts, etc by the sick which are not healed. Many are under the false impression that God would never ordain sickness etc to fall upon people. God wants you to be healthy and to prosper! A familiar message from the Prosperity Gospel which has plagued Christendom.

 

So does this mean that God does not heal? No, what this means is that God may not authenticate certain offices by gifting them with supernatural means to perform miraculous healings today though God uses ordinary means. That is, gifting us with the ability, reason, knowledge, and wisdom to fulfill one of the first universal commandments to mankind which was to subdue the earth (to fight disease, combat pollution etc.).

 

God bless,

William"

 

Essentially, god doesn't heal anymore; but when he does, he uses people.

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I joined the Christforums to add my 2 cents to God's thread. Come on over!

 

edit: I just shared the Pente's belief on that thread. Not going to any drop anti-Christian bombs on his site. I'll behave. At worst I'll get bored and disappear when nobody agrees with me. lol

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18 hours ago, Margee said:
19 hours ago, NeverHealed52Years said:

526317870_28_2_101.gif.42d13679a299f5046c04da6f0e03177b.gif  And here we go again ..... around and around and around we go...god never speaks, never shows up in any tangible way...ever...but we are supposed to believe anyway ...it is all our fault never the no show god...blame the victim...we try harder...numb out more thoughts and feelings ...more blind faith, more self blaming  and still no show, no speak, no tangible anything from god ,,,,so we repent and change and change and change and improve and improve....and still nothing ...and it is still us thinking, believing, doing something incorrectly....we didn't believe the right thing, about the right god, at exactly the right time, in exactly the right way, on the 5th Tuesday, of the sixth month, during the correct leap year, on the correct solstice, while only wearing the exact required shade of blue, when it is a waning (not waxing) crescent moon ..what exactly is that method, formula, belief, perception, understanding, teaching and feeling to please god we didn't get right so he will actually be real? wheeeeeee, around and around and around we go!!!! 

1

 

YOU, get the trophy for this answer!!! You go, girl! Wonderful! :woohoo:

 

                     Blush, Blush                   :blush:

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5 minutes ago, midniterider said:

I joined the Christforums to add my 2 cents to God's thread. Come on over!

 

Good on you, man!  This should be fun...

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