Pyramids

No one is more worried by the actual physical manifestation of a god than his priests; it’s like having the auditors in unexpectedly. -Terry Pratchett, “Pyramids”

Absence of Evidence

Someone requested a comment thread here to discuss Victor Stenger’s article from the Huffington Post: Absence of Evidence Is Evidence of Absence.

Note, unless you want to be condemned to the pits of hell, be sure to RTFA before commenting.

What is Faith?

There are some people in our previous thread and on Twitter who keep asserting that theists and non-theists are on equal ground because they’re both based on faith. I don’t think of myself as having faith, but maybe we just don’t agree on a definition for the word. So, what is faith? Is faith a good thing? Always? Are all objects of faith equally likely to be true? Please discuss in the comments.

Let’s get serious

This is the thread for serious dialogs. I’ll kick things off with a question: Why do believe (or not believe) that a god exists?

I Repent of My Blasphemy

God has begun to soften my heart. I made this blog and the Twitter account @almightygod because I was angry with God. I see that now. Over the last couple of years I have committed foul acts of blasphemy, defaming the name of our Lord by speaking as him and by attributing to him my own cynicism, laziness, absence and malice.

But then I saw this movie: Finger of God. Warning: Don’t watch this movie if you’re not prepared to have your life changed. It has proven to me beyond the shadow of a doubt that God is real and is acting in the world today. I always knew it deep down, but Satan had hardened my heart and blinded me to God’s love. If God can give golden teeth to these people, he can give me a golden heart.

I will begin to make amends. I intend to delete all of my blasphemous tweets and posts, but first I must go back to every person I’ve interacted with and try to undo some of the damage I’ve done. I’ll explain where I was wrong and give them my testimony about how God has changed me. This Sunday I’ll be at my local Assembly of God church praying earnestly to receive the anointing of the Holy Spirit.

I also pray that you will forgive me and that you’ll watch the movie I linked to above with an open heart and a desire to know the majesty of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. May He bless you as He’s blessed me.

1 Corinthians 1:18-19
Psalm 14:1

Oh noes, a cartoon!

Blocked

This website blocked me from posting comments: http://www.krististephens.com/2010/03/christian-book-stores-childrens-section.html

Here’s the comment I tried to post:

Won’t it be a bit traumatic to learn that I killed almost everyone on earth? Won’t it be confusing to learn that I was ok with slavery and with forcing women to marry their rapist? What lessons will they learn from 1 Samuel 15? That if your religious beliefs tell you to kill people, obey them? How old should a child be before they read Song of Solomon, with its sexual imagery? What will it do to a young girl’s self-esteem to read that women should learn in silence and submit to their husbands? I think people keep their children away from the “real” bible for a reason. Be careful.

I’m not sure why that bothered them so much. Do Christians prefer to not think about what is actually printed in their holy book?

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Check them out.

Some good questions from Google Suggest

Pastor BJ

I seem to be on the verge of having a serious discussion with Pastor Benjamin J. Short. I’m moving the discussion here so we can break free from the 140 character limit.

BJ has made several points and I would like to collect my responses to them here. Then we can continue the discussion in the comments of this post.

BJ_Short: @almightygod just visited your webpage. I’m very curious how an atheist REALLY believes we came into existance. And what happens after death

almightygod: @BJ_Short We come from our mothers. After death we rot and are gone.

BJ_Short: @almightygod where did our mothers and their mothers come from? And where does our conscience come from?

BJ_Short: @almightygod How can biological matter spontaneously develop conscience?

almightygod: @BJ_Short How do you define conscience?

BJ_Short: @almightygod our God-given knowledge of His existance and our responsibilty to keep His law. As Psalm 40:8 says “thy law is within my heart”

almightygod: @BJ_Short Well, if you define it that way then there’s no such thing.

BJ_Short: @almightygod Interesting! What about emotions? Where does love and hate, joy and sorrow come from?Even the ability to believe or not?

almightygod: @BJ_Short We don’t need magic to explain emotions. They come from our brain which evolved.

BJ_Short: @almightygod from what?

almightygod: @BJ_Short Human brains evolved from simpler brains. And you can see simpler forms of emotion and morality in animals.

BJ_Short: @almightygod I’m asking about the beginning. Where’d love come from? Where did “simpler” brains come from? Why are we even here?

BJ_Short: @almightygod Who decides what’s right and wrong?

almightygod: @BJ_Short Does a mother dog show love when she cares for and defends her puppies?

almightygod: @BJ_Short People (voters, legislators, juries, communities) decide what’s right and wrong.

almightygod: @BJ_Short Do you really think people (and animals) wouldn’t cooperate unless someone magicked it into them?

BJ_Short: @almightygod do you really think it rained on the rocks for millions of years and now magically we exist and can see and speak and even love

BJ_Short: @almightygod do you really think nothing exploded and became everything?

almightygod: @BJ_Short Are we going to discuss the moral argument? Or the cosmological? I get dizzy when you switch back and forth.

Let’s begin with the cosmological argument. Reality-based humans are willing to admit that we don’t know exactly how the universe began. It is an area of ongoing study. The cosmological argument seeks to replace that admission of ignorance and dedication to discovery with an assertion that is backed up by no evidence and does nothing to help us discover the truth. Essentially, you look at a gap in our current knowledge and say “God did it.” There’s no evidence for this. It’s more useful to say “I don’t know, let’s try to find out.” That’s my response to the cosmological argument. If you want to pick up the moral argument, then please address the responses that I’ve already made.

I look forward to our continuing discussion.