Is Christianity redeemable?

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Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby mitchellmckain » Mon Feb 02, 2015 2:10 pm

Definitely a mixed history. It is has inspired a lot good. On the other hand, it has been an excuse for, or at the very least somewhat compatible with, a great deal of evil. I don't see any improvement in modern times either. My first impulse is to say what disgusting mess. And I am not talking about its diversity since I would consider that one of its better and most promising features. It is that diversity which motivated the ideals of religious freedom which it supported.

My inclination is to say that it is always better to work for the improvement of what we have, because starting over will just be a repeat of all the same mistakes. It is not like atheists are the first to become totally disgusted with Christianity as it is. That has been happening constantly from its very beginning up until modern times where we see new religious movements and people both re-inventing Christianity and starting whole new religions all the time. So I cannot see how an elimination of Christianity can have any good result.

Thus it seems far far more rational to me to find what is good and valuable in Christianity and fight against those things we can definitely do without.
Last edited by mitchellmckain on Thu Feb 05, 2015 5:25 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby Moonwood the Hare » Mon Feb 02, 2015 3:59 pm

Christianity is always adapting itself into something which can be believed

T S Eliot
All shall be well, and all shall be well, and all manner of thing shall be well.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby David Petch » Mon Feb 02, 2015 9:30 pm

Religion always adapts to the culture of present. Women were allowed to vote only in 1914 and in some Middle Eastern countries, a fucking donkey has more rights. Recent surveys have shown that Atheists in general have higher IQ's than those of religious faith.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby tirtlegrrl » Tue Feb 03, 2015 5:11 am

mitchellmckain wrote:Definitely a mixed history. It is has inspired a lot good.
Speaking as an artist, I agree with you completely. J.S. Bach is the MAN. And Handel's "Messiah" makes my hair stand on end.


On the other hand, it has been an excuse or at the very least somewhat compatible with a great deal of evil. I don't see any improvement in modern time either. My first impulse is to say what disgusting mess. And I am not talking about its diversity since I would consider that one of its better and most promising features. It is that diversity which motivated the ideals of religious freedom which it supported.
I see within Christian practice two opposing spirits (as it were): the one that is open and generous and loving toward one's neighbor, and the one that says "you must expel the immoral brother" and that light can have no fellowship with darkness. The inclusive is at war with the divisive and judgmental. However I don't see this as a problem exclusive to Christianity but rather as an issue inherent to human societies. Err too far toward permissiveness and the whole thing falls apart; too far toward the other side and you get oppression and either collapse or violent revolution.



My inclination is to say that it is always better to work for the improvement of what we have because starting over will just be a repeat of all the same mistakes. It is not like atheists are the first to become totally disgusted with Christianity as it is. That has been happening constantly from its very beginning up until modern times where we see new religious movements and people both re-inventing Christianity and starting whole new religions all the time. So I cannot see how an elimination of Christianity can have any good result. Thus it seems far far more rational to me to find what what is good and valuable in Christianity and fight against those things we can definitely do without.
One of the principles that actually led to my deconversion was the injunction of the Bible to seek wisdom, and to "test everything, and hold on to the good." I don't see that this principle is bogus just because I was taught it from the Bible, or that "love your neighbor" only applies if Jesus was born of a virgin and suffered under Pontius Pilate. In this way I think the Buddhists have it right when they say that the wisdom of the teaching is more important than whether it came from the Buddha or not. I care more about the means by which people hold on to God-belief and what kind of God they believe in, than whether they are theists per se. I was a non-fundamentalist LONG before I decided I was comfortable calling myself an atheist.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby Moonwood the Hare » Tue Feb 03, 2015 5:40 am

David Petch wrote:Religion always adapts to the culture of present.

But that's a good thing right?
Women were allowed to vote only in 1914 and in some Middle Eastern countries, a fucking donkey has more rights.

Would you see Christianity playing any part in the emergence of a rights based culture - clue: it stems from the Christian adoption of Stoic natural law theory.
Recent surveys have shown that Atheists in general have higher IQ's than those of religious faith.

What do surveys say about the IQ of people who believe in the objective reality of IQs? My old sociology tutor wrote a good paper on the social contruction of IQ.
By the way do we alow abusive cultural imperialism in this lounge?
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby Chapabel » Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:23 am

I believe what is needed in Christianity is a return to sound Biblical doctrines and practices. Too many people calling themselves "Christian" have rejected the Bible and replaced its teaching with creeds and doctrines of man. The best way to begin this is to establish a relationship with the Author of the Bible and allow Him to teach us how to rightly divide the word of truth.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby tirtlegrrl » Tue Feb 03, 2015 7:30 am

Chapabel wrote:I believe what is needed in Christianity is a return to sound Biblical doctrines and practices. Too many people calling themselves "Christian" have rejected the Bible and replaced its teaching with creeds and doctrines of man. The best way to begin this is to establish a relationship with the Author of the Bible and allow Him to teach us how to rightly divide the word of truth.


Do you mean they've rejected the Bible itself (which I don't see that many Christians have, not even the really liberal ones), or that they've rejected the doctrine of Biblical inerrancy? Or that they reject a specific hermeneutic approach?
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby Chapabel » Tue Feb 03, 2015 7:54 am

I see many Christians rejecting specific Biblical doctrines that they don't like. People have a tendency to cherry pick the doctrines they want to observe. For instance many Christians reject the Biblical account of a six day creation and Noah's flood. Many reject the Bible's teaching regarding the sinfulness of homosexuality; of women in ministry; of separation from sin; etc...Many Christians claim there are errors and contradictions in the Bible. When folks begin doubting the authority of God's word they open themselves up to false doctrines.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby tirtlegrrl » Tue Feb 03, 2015 9:12 am

Chapabel wrote:I see many Christians rejecting specific Biblical doctrines that they don't like. People have a tendency to cherry pick the doctrines they want to observe. For instance many Christians reject the Biblical account of a six day creation and Noah's flood.
Those aren't doctrines, though; those are stories. The doctrine is the teaching or principle that is derived from the story. You don't have to interpret a creation myth literally in order for it to still convey something that's true. I think stories and their authors are done a horrible disservice if one accepts or rejects them based purely on whether they show a wooden fidelity to specific historical events. There's basically nothing about Genesis that tells me it should be read like a science text.



Many reject the Bible's teaching regarding the sinfulness of homosexuality; of women in ministry; of separation from sin; etc...Many Christians claim there are errors and contradictions in the Bible. When folks begin doubting the authority of God's word they open themselves up to false doctrines.
Don't you agree that two people can believe that the Bible is authoritative and still disagree on how it should be read and interpreted? Everyone brings their own set of assumptions to the text. The issue isn't necessarily that one person cares about the Bible and the other one doesn't; it's that the Bible doesn't come with a user's manual.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby Chapabel » Tue Feb 03, 2015 9:32 am

Those aren't doctrines, though; those are stories. The doctrine is the teaching or principle that is derived from the story. You don't have to interpret a creation myth literally in order for it to still convey something that's true. I think stories and their authors are done a horrible disservice if one accepts or rejects them based purely on whether they show a wooden fidelity to specific historical events. There's basically nothing about Genesis that tells me it should be read like a science text.

Actually they are doctrines: The Doctrine of Creation and the Doctrine of Salvation by Faith.

Don't you agree that two people can believe that the Bible is authoritative and still disagree on how it should be read and interpreted? Everyone brings their own set of assumptions to the text. The issue isn't necessarily that one person cares about the Bible and the other one doesn't; it's that the Bible doesn't come with a user's manual.

Absolutely. But there is a difference in "interpretation" and flat out rejection.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby Moonwood the Hare » Tue Feb 03, 2015 10:43 am

Chapabel wrote:
Those aren't doctrines, though; those are stories. The doctrine is the teaching or principle that is derived from the story. You don't have to interpret a creation myth literally in order for it to still convey something that's true. I think stories and their authors are done a horrible disservice if one accepts or rejects them based purely on whether they show a wooden fidelity to specific historical events. There's basically nothing about Genesis that tells me it should be read like a science text.

Actually they are doctrines: The Doctrine of Creation and the Doctrine of Salvation by Faith.

Surely the doctrine of creation teaches that the cosmos depends on God for its existence, it is not a doctrine about how long it took for God to do the creating; it describes a relationship not a process. And a belief in slavation by faith does not seem to me to depend on a literal interpretation of the flood.
Don't you agree that two people can believe that the Bible is authoritative and still disagree on how it should be read and interpreted? Everyone brings their own set of assumptions to the text. The issue isn't necessarily that one person cares about the Bible and the other one doesn't; it's that the Bible doesn't come with a user's manual.

Absolutely. But there is a difference in "interpretation" and flat out rejection.

I like the saying I think by Neibhur that we should take it seriously but not literally.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby Chapabel » Tue Feb 03, 2015 5:33 pm

Well, when God inspired Moses to write the book of Genesis, He told him it only took Him 6 days to create the universe. I see no need for God to lie about it.

The flood does indeed teach salvation by faith. Noah built the ark because, by faith, he believed God when He said He would flood the earth. Noah and his family were saved because they responded to God's promise by faith.

You are entitled to refuse to accept the literal interpretation of the Bible. But it makes your faith tough to defend. Good luck with that.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby mitchellmckain » Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:04 pm

Moonwood the Hare wrote: And a belief in slavation by faith does not seem to me to depend on a literal interpretation of the flood.

I found the phrase "slavation by faith" quite amusing, though I realize it was probably a typo. If we're to take it seriously then we probably say the opposite that a slavation by faith (i.e. blind faith) requires literal interpretations of everything.
Last edited by mitchellmckain on Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:31 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Is Christianity redeemable?

Postby Rian » Tue Feb 03, 2015 6:08 pm

LOL! Yes, typos are often very funny!

Chapabel, what do you mean by "it makes your faith tough to defend"? Are you talking about what is sometimes called a saving faith? IOW, do you think that people that don't think that the world was created in 6 days will go to hell?
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