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Thread: Definition of Christian

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by john1565 View Post
    To me Christianity means love and sacrifice. Jesus spread love and only love. Unfortunately, churches and rulers didn't follow the path of love. Jesus sacrificed his life for his ideology and as a result he is most probably the most short-lived prophet. Even he could not went many places to spread Christianity as can be seen from his tour map on wikitour. Its astonishing how his followers have been use a path of hatred, how they tortured Galileo and other scientists!
    I dont agree at all with this characterization of Christianity. The vast majority of Christians and Christian teaching extols loving others as yourself, being charitable, reaping what you (rather than others) sow (ie personal responsibility and accountability), and generally leading an ethical, productive life. This usually results in success in life for its practioners and a resultant pleasant life for their offspring and surrounding community. A neighborhood filled with such people in any western country is a peaceful, pleasant, safe place to live. Characterizing such an overwhelmingly benevolent group of people as following "a path of hatred" is irresponsible and false.

    The evil people from the church in the past 2 thousand years, were in reality, a very tiny percentage. They were not true Christians but were evil, ambitious sociopaths who used religion and any other tool as their disposal to gain power. For example, the overall number of people actually killed during the inquisition (which was clearly wrong, but was usually done for political reasons disguised as religious reasons) over hundreds of years, added together, was but a tiny fraction of the people killed IN ONE YEAR by communists including Stalin and Pol Pot, by dictators including Hitler, by intellectuals including Robespierre during the French Revolution, by the Dictator controlled Japanese army during the Nanking massacre, or even by the Hutus in the recent conflict in Rwanda. By contrast, the overall number of people who have been helped by Christianity throughout history numbers in the billions...

    My point is Christianity and any other religion that preaches love and responsibility has a positive effect on society and should not be hated because of the bad actions of a tiny percentage of the religion. When dealing with any large group of people, their will always be a few bad apples, but remember to not throw the baby out with the bathwater.

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  3. #222
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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by jar View Post
    Unless someone presents a reasoned argument for me to waste time watching a video I will choose not to. And so far you have not presented any reasoning to encourage me to watch the video or presented any explanation of what it might have to do with the topic.
    Ha, ha... i love you too!


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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by SIR View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by jar View Post
    Unless someone presents a reasoned argument for me to waste time watching a video I will choose not to. And so far you have not presented any reasoning to encourage me to watch the video or presented any explanation of what it might have to do with the topic.
    Ha, ha... i love you too!
    Yet you still seem unable or unwilling to explain what the video has to do with the topic.
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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by jar View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by EricTheRed View Post
    I understand what you are saying JAR, and I think that even if a child at an early age, is introduced to the best version of Christianity by the most well meaning and altruistic teachers, the ability of its message and corresponding faith sticking depend on the individual receiving the message. In this optimal scenario, I think you would end up with significantly more lifetime believers than normal Christian parishes achieve, but never achieve 100% success. Faith is very individual and some will choose to believe the tenets of Christianity but others will not believe, some for selfish reasons, but others for sound, logical reasons (most certainly logical to them) due to atheism or another religion.
    But that is very reasonable and also desirable.

    There are two connected and inseparable parts involved, those things which can be tested and verified and those things which are unevidenced. The moral system, ethical system that can be tested and does effect society would fall under the first part while concepts like any post life judgement, even the afterlife itself as well as the existence of a God or of sin or a dogma such as the Trinity all fall in the latter group.

    We fail though within Christianity to teach the distinctions or necessary discrimination for the members to see and understand those facts.
    I agree with the first part of your assertion but not the second. Isnt the existence of God evidenced by the miracle of life? By its Grand design? What about all of the personal testimonies by thousands of people throughout history about their interaction with God while on earth? Do you not see the creative force behind the universe? Isn't this evidence of God's existence? Isn't the fact that you are meant to be here evidence of God's existence?

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by EricTheRed View Post
    I agree with the first part of your assertion but not the second. Isnt the existence of God evidenced by the miracle of life? By its Grand design? What about all of the personal testimonies by thousands of people throughout history about their interaction with God while on earth? Do you not see the creative force behind the universe? Isn't this evidence of God's existence? Isn't the fact that you are meant to be here evidence of God's existence?
    • The miracle of life?
    • Grand design?
    • Anecdotal and unverifiable testimonies?
    • Creative force behind the universe?
    • We're meant to be here?


    None of this is evidence, but rather only your preferred interpretation (for whatever personal reasons you hold).

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by Empty_of_Clouds View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by EricTheRed View Post
    I agree with the first part of your assertion but not the second. Isnt the existence of God evidenced by the miracle of life? By its Grand design? What about all of the personal testimonies by thousands of people throughout history about their interaction with God while on earth? Do you not see the creative force behind the universe? Isn't this evidence of God's existence? Isn't the fact that you are meant to be here evidence of God's existence?
    • The miracle of life?
    • Grand design?
    • Anecdotal and unverifiable testimonies?
    • Creative force behind the universe?
    • We're meant to be here?


    None of this is evidence, but rather only your preferred interpretation (for whatever personal reasons you hold).
    EOC, the obviousness of these pieces of evidence is incontrovertible to any logical person. You may not subjectively find this evidence personally compelling, but you must admit it is evidence that must be considered. Please do not let your preconceived ideas and logic be at odds. See where truth lies and actively join me in its pursuit. I am also curious why you ignored the evidence of the personal testimony of thousands of people throughout history and their interactions with God? Rather than join those pseudo intellectuals who ignore compelling evidence and believe they are too intelligent to believe in God, I invite you to join beliefs with true geniuses such as Albert Einstein who famously said "we all dance to a mysterious tune, intoned in the distance by an invisible player."

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Sorry, I'm going to have to be blunt. It appears that you are misunderstanding what the term 'evidence' actually means. There is no testable, repeatable or verifiable evidence for the existence of any kind of supreme being. While I fully accept that absence of evidence is not evidence of absence, you cannot have it both ways.

    If you want to harbour a belief in a supreme being, that's your prerogative and I can accept that this is your choice, but please don't try to support it by citing the term "evidence" when no actual evidence can be found.

    That there are mysteries to our Universe goes without saying. However, assuming Divine intervention in light of our own ignorance of how these mysteries work is a classic example of medieval thinking. Kind of like believing Apollo dragged the Sun up into the sky each day, before discovering planetary bodies and motions.

    Note: I am not knoking your right to your beliefs or faith or whatever you want to call it, just the hollow nature of your argument.

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Ha, so you characterize a powerful evidentiary argument as hollow and by inference accuse Albert Einstein of medieval thinking! The aim of this discussion is not victory, but progress. I wish you well.

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    There is no evidential part to your argument, that is precisely why it is hollow. Einstein is well-known for wondering at the things we do not yet know. Your argument invoking his genius is an appeal to authority - a common logical fallacy.

    In general, the last thing religion wants is a rigorous examination. It cannot function effectively under that kind of pressure.

    I'm not seeking victory. That implies that there is some kind of gain. How do I profit from this?
    Last edited by Empty_of_Clouds; April 6th, 2018 at 07:43 AM.

  11. #230
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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by EricTheRed View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by jar View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by EricTheRed View Post
    I understand what you are saying JAR, and I think that even if a child at an early age, is introduced to the best version of Christianity by the most well meaning and altruistic teachers, the ability of its message and corresponding faith sticking depend on the individual receiving the message. In this optimal scenario, I think you would end up with significantly more lifetime believers than normal Christian parishes achieve, but never achieve 100% success. Faith is very individual and some will choose to believe the tenets of Christianity but others will not believe, some for selfish reasons, but others for sound, logical reasons (most certainly logical to them) due to atheism or another religion.
    But that is very reasonable and also desirable.

    There are two connected and inseparable parts involved, those things which can be tested and verified and those things which are unevidenced. The moral system, ethical system that can be tested and does effect society would fall under the first part while concepts like any post life judgement, even the afterlife itself as well as the existence of a God or of sin or a dogma such as the Trinity all fall in the latter group.

    We fail though within Christianity to teach the distinctions or necessary discrimination for the members to see and understand those facts.
    I agree with the first part of your assertion but not the second. Isnt the existence of God evidenced by the miracle of life? By its Grand design? What about all of the personal testimonies by thousands of people throughout history about their interaction with God while on earth? Do you not see the creative force behind the universe? Isn't this evidence of God's existence? Isn't the fact that you are meant to be here evidence of God's existence?
    Nope. The existence of life is evidence that life exists. Personal testimony is evidence of what people claim to believe. No, I do not see the creative force behind the universe and no one has ever presented any evidence of a creative force behind the universe. And there is absolutely no evidence that I am meant to be here.
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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by EricTheRed View Post
    I am also curious why you ignored the evidence of the personal testimony of thousands of people throughout history and their interactions with God?
    People are easily deceived, and many people have been known to easily resort to the deception of others in pursuit of their own objectives.

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    I don't really know why you are debating this topic, you all (including me) have an unshakeable view as to what you believe to be correct and none of you have the evidence - other than Faith or lack of it - that what you believe is correct.

    And an absence of evidence does not validate the result.

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    Cool Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by jar View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by SIR View Post
    Ha, ha... i love you too!
    Yet you still seem unable or unwilling to explain what the video has to do with the topic.
    The way I see it, obviously with my limited perspective and knowledge, Soviet Communism would've not been without Marxism, Marxism would've not been without transcendentalism, and transcendentalism would not have been without Calvinism. The video shows a town which grew up after the fall of Czarist feudalism, and as stated already it gives very little note or even intrigue towards spiritual observance. The townsfolk, and in particular the professional trappers, show conspicuous regard for nature and the cycles of natural cause and effect. The film is called 'Happy People', they are 'poor' financially by so-called 'first world' standards but the nature of their community and existence seems to show more respect for the world/universe on a daily basis than most 'godly' people show in their short and tiny moments of individual greatness.
    Last edited by SIR; April 6th, 2018 at 04:07 PM.

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by jar View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by checkrail View Post
    That is not exactly what I was meant. In terms of their professed doctrine those bodies believe that a Trinitarian belief and belief in the divinity of Jesus are essential characteristics of Christianity.
    But there are non-Trinitarians who also believe that the Trinitarians have it wrong.

    What makes one group correct?
    That's easy. If a group's beliefs corresponded to objective reality, that would make it correct.
    How to determine whether or not a belief corresponds to objective reality (i. e., is true) is another discussion, however, and when the subject matter of the belief relates to something that no one this side of the grave can have first-hand knowledge of is yet another.
    Last edited by calamum; April 17th, 2018 at 05:41 PM.

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    It, in my opinion, doesn't make you anything except that you believe in god. You're ok.....


    Quote Originally Posted by RNHC View Post
    I was raised a Catholic but I haven't been to a church in a long while. As I read and learn, I started to question and I no longer believe in divinity of Jesus. I still believe in God. What does that make me?

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    “People who want to share their religious views with you almost never want you to share yours with them.”

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by Empty_of_Clouds View Post
    “People who want to share their religious views with you almost never want you to share yours with them.”
    You are not the first one to notice this phenomenon of human nature EOC:

    "If one were to offer men to choose out of all the customs in the world such as seemed to them the best, they would examine the whole number, and end by preferring their own." Herodotus - 5BC

    I have come to believe that all ideas under religious discussion, in the end, must be judged by their ability to help us live well in the long term, as a society.

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Two observations about the current Jeremy Corbyn furore...

    People really don't understand what a 'Semite' is - how can he be anti-Semitic when he is apparently very pally with the Palestinians, who are as much Semites as any one from any of the so-called tribes of Israel?!

    And... why the surprise that a fervent communist, if not actual Marxist, is anti-Zionist? As a 'good' communist he will be, of course, anti-religious - and by extension will naturally be anti the Jewish religion and anti the belief that any one 'race' is chosen by 'god' above all others and has a right to live in a particular place.



    Religion is clearly a class issue - all religions have generally escalated at one point or another to the idea that they are superior to others, and within any religion there are always clear hierarchies of authority and subservience. To paraphrase Marx - religion is a psychological tool used to coerce, control, and subjugate.

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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Now that’s funny, considering almost everyone in the communist party with any power worth mentioning in USSR was jewish.

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  23. #240
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    Default Re: Definition of Christian

    Quote Originally Posted by adhoc View Post
    Now that’s funny, considering almost everyone in the communist party with any power worth mentioning in USSR was jewish.
    You are talking pre-Stalin, of course?

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