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bigjim36

Why do people believe the bible?

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Guyver
19 hours ago, simplybill said:

I'm not a fan of 'religion' beyond what's said in the New Testament book of James:  "Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you." (James 1:27 NLT). Christianity is less about religion, and more about action.   

In defense of your friend who reads the Bible:

Consider the difference between 'What Would Jesus Do?'  as opposed to 'What did Jesus do?'. For us believers, reading about the example set by Jesus is like reading the instruction manual of your new lawnmower. It gives us a framework in which to operate.

   

 

I agree with you about Jame's assessment of pure religion.  I've seen it in practice and I respect it.  However, in regards to what Jesus would do, a student of the bible will find a mixed bag.  For the Jesus of the bible, the one who said love your enemies, is the same Jesus who said bring me my enemies and slay them before me.

He's also the same Jesus who said he would separate all people into two categories, one group gets to go to heaven and live with God in peace forever, and the other group gets to be cast into a place of fire and brimstone where they can be tortured forever.  So, yeah....that's mildly contradictory to say the least.  

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Guyver
2 minutes ago, Rlyeh said:

Yeah, that's got nothing to do with my comment.

This was your comment.

"But God is Yahweh, the god of the Bible. So they are strongly related, at least historically."

It is incorrect because you should have said God is called Yahweh.  The name itself is made up....it's not real.  But, if you were to study the character attributes of the person from the bible called Yahweh or Jehovah, as I have.....you may find it impossible to reconcile the nature of this being, with that of an infinitely capable being who has made all things (all universes which exist now, and will ever exist) and who is love by nature.  

In short, the bible calls "God" Yahweh as that's the way the name was translated, but that doesn't mean that this character is God (the maker of all things) any more than you calling me the King of France actually makes me the real King of France.  So, my point is that people calling God Yahweh or even believing that he is, and writing it down doesn't mean it's true.  It means that's what people have historically believed.  

 

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South Alabam
1 hour ago, bigjim36 said:

So getting back to my original post, I'd actually like to hear from some creationists and christian apologists who disagree with proven science and instead choose the bibles teachings. I want to know why they believe it and how can they turn a blind eye to actual physical evidence. I know you're out there. 

Scholars are finding that the Hebrew language is very complex. I read somewhere from an Israeli website that some words, and sentences within the bible, can be translated to have different meanings. Not every sentence or word however. An example given was this scripture: 

Exodus 12:29 

And it came to pass, that at midnight the LORD smote all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh that sat on his throne unto the firstborn of the captive that was in the dungeon; and all the firstborn of cattle.

The words they found within that scripture were translated a different way to read something along the lines of: "I didn't slay a single one."

 

Which leads us back to this scripture:

Deuteronomy 32:4 

He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.

 

And I am sure there are many scriptures written one way, which can translate a different way when studied in depth.

So yes, maybe everything in the Bible shouldn't be taken at face value to understand what God is really saying. However, some things aren't meant to be understood, yet.

 

 

 

 

 

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Rlyeh
31 minutes ago, Guyver said:

This was your comment.

"But God is Yahweh, the god of the Bible. So they are strongly related, at least historically."

It is incorrect because you should have said God is called Yahweh.  The name itself is made up....it's not real.

God is an English name for the Biblical deity. Yahweh is another of his names. All names are made up, including God.

 

Quote

In short, the bible calls "God" Yahweh as that's the way the name was translated, but that doesn't mean that this character is God (the maker of all things) any more than you calling me the King of France actually makes me the real King of France.  So, my point is that people calling God Yahweh or even believing that he is, and writing it down doesn't mean it's true.  It means that's what people have historically believed.  

The Bible has a character who has many names, one of these names is Yahweh. "God" is an English word originally used by Christians to mean the Biblical god. How is the statement "God is Yahweh" not true when the word "God" was made to mean Yahweh?

Edited by Rlyeh
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Truthseeker007
1 hour ago, bigjim36 said:

Where've they all gone to? There used to be loads of them on here spouting scripture as proof! Haha. 

Religion is in the decline as far as I know.

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Truthseeker007
26 minutes ago, South Alabam said:

So yes, maybe everything in the Bible shouldn't be taken at face value to understand what God is really saying. However, some things aren't meant to be understood, yet.

What things aren't meant to be understood?

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Truthseeker007
22 hours ago, Podo said:

People believe in the literal word of the bible because adhering to an instruction manual is far, far easier than thinking for yourself. By following a literal word of the bible, it frees people from such pesky things as personal responsibility and accountability.

The absurdity of anyone taking an English translation of the bible literally is also hilarious to me. Even if the bible was delivered to us from a deity, the English translation sure as heck wouldn't be the correct version to adhere to literally.

One way for the church is to get around that is telling the congregation that they shouldn't ask questions and if it is gods will it will be done. They also say to stay away from non believers. So most of the time growing up you are told by the authority not to ask questions. So I am not surprised that people believe the Bible word for word. It is like Plato's Allegory of the Cave.

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Guyver
38 minutes ago, Rlyeh said:

The Bible has a character who has many names, one of these names is Yahweh. "God" is an English word originally used by Christians to mean the Biblical god. How is the statement "God is Yahweh" not true when the word "God" was made to mean Yahweh?

I'm not disagreeing that Yahweh is a term used in reference to God, as many other terms or names are used in the bible in reference to God and that they are in fact called names of God - as claimed by the bible.  I'm disagreeing that the person called Yahweh is actually God - that is....as I understand the term and as the bible claims God's nature is.  I'm a little surprised you don't understand the distinction I'm making here as I gave you an analogy.  Calling me the King of France, even believing that I am the King of France and writing it down in a book that you call sacred truth; does not make me the King of France.

The bible claims many things about God's nature and attributes.  Aside from all the terms in the Old Testament such as Jehovah Jireh, or Nissi which have meaning associated with God's name,  God is said to be omnipresent, omnicient, and omnipotent.  The New Testament claims not only that God knows all things, but that his nature is love.  It claims, "God is love."  2 Corinthians chapter 13 describes what love is, and it's not physical attraction.  

In comparing these attributes of God as claimed in the New Testament, as well as some references in the Old Testament such as Psalms, the being described as Yahweh in the Old Testament has a contradictory nature.  In short, it is my opinion that it would be impossible for the "Omni" God of Love described in the New Testament to be this being called Yahweh as the natures of the two are distinct and irreconcilable.   I could go into complete detail, but I don't know what good it would do.  It is true that the writers of the bible seem to believe your statement that Yahweh is God, and that many people in the world believe it to be a fact.  

I hope that explains my opinions more completely.  

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South Alabam
33 minutes ago, Truthseeker007 said:

What things aren't meant to be understood?

Basically the whole Bible. In it, we see a war that destroys pretty much all mankind within the prophecies. We see the Antichrist, beast, 666, all these things that men have tried to find the answers and meanings to. If all of these hidden things were known, it becomes hard to change the forthcoming destruction. So you hide these answers to be revealed at some later time, which would bring about peace, instead of utter destruction, killing all upon the face of the earth.

Isaiah 45:18 

For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.

 

 

Even Jesus spoke in proverbs to hide the truth.      

John 16:25 

These things have I spoken unto you in proverbs: but the time cometh, when I shall no more speak unto you in proverbs, but I shall shew you plainly of the Father.

Matthew 11:25 

At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes.

 

 

 

 

Edited by South Alabam

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bigjim36
4 hours ago, Truthseeker007 said:

Religion is in the decline as far as I know.

And yet the so called christian right rule the west. I say so called because their actions are far removed from Jesus' teachings, however they are in line with the christians behaviour during the dark ages! 

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Mr Walker
5 hours ago, Truthseeker007 said:

Religion is in the decline as far as I know.

While this is true in america and some western nations it is not true globally or as a percentage of the human population.

 

For years, the percentage of Americans who do not identify with any religion has been rising, a trend similar to what has been happening in much of Europe (including the United Kingdom). Despite this, in coming decades, the global share of religiously unaffiliated people is actually expected to fall, according to Pew Research Center’s new study on the future of world religions.

FT_17.04.05_projectionsUpdate_unaffilPopTo be clear, the total number of religiously unaffiliated people (which includes atheists, agnostics and those who do not identify with any religion in particular) is expected to rise in absolute terms, from 1.17 billion in 2015 to 1.20 billion in 2060. But this growth is projected to occur at the same time that other religious groups – and the global population overall – are growing even faster.

These projections, which take into account demographic factors such as fertility, age composition and life expectancy, forecast that people with no religion will make up about 13% of the world’s population in 2060, down from roughly 16% as of 2015.

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/04/07/why-people-with-no-religion-are-projected-to-decline-as-a-share-of-the-worlds-population/

In any scenario, the Percentage of self identified atheists and non believers among humans, remains very low. 

 

There may be two reasons religious  people, and especially fundamentalists/creationists,    do not appear much on UM.

First the y are driven away by the  antagonism   ridicule, and personal attacks on them by some posters, but also the increase in religious belief is occurring in china, Africa and non western societies and these people are not represented on Um much, if a t all.

  Then of course, creationists are only a small percentage  of religious believers, at least within Christianity,  and have been for almost a century, as modern, science -based education has become almost universal in the  west. 

Edited by Mr Walker
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Rlyeh
13 hours ago, Guyver said:

I'm not disagreeing that Yahweh is a term used in reference to God, as many other terms or names are used in the bible in reference to God and that they are in fact called names of God - as claimed by the bible.  I'm disagreeing that the person called Yahweh is actually God - that is....as I understand the term and as the bible claims God's nature is.  I'm a little surprised you don't understand the distinction I'm making here as I gave you an analogy.  Calling me the King of France, even believing that I am the King of France and writing it down in a book that you call sacred truth; does not make me the King of France.

I understand your analogy but it's inaccurate, I'm talking about the meanings and use of words. Historically the word God was defined as Yahweh.

The first ever mention of the King of France was never speaking about you. However the earliest mention of the word God was speaking of Yahweh.

 

13 hours ago, Guyver said:

The bible claims many things about God's nature and attributes.  Aside from all the terms in the Old Testament such as Jehovah Jireh, or Nissi which have meaning associated with God's name,  God is said to be omnipresent, omnicient, and omnipotent.  The New Testament claims not only that God knows all things, but that his nature is love.  It claims, "God is love."  2 Corinthians chapter 13 describes what love is, and it's not physical attraction.  

In comparing these attributes of God as claimed in the New Testament, as well as some references in the Old Testament such as Psalms, the being described as Yahweh in the Old Testament has a contradictory nature.  In short, it is my opinion that it would be impossible for the "Omni" God of Love described in the New Testament to be this being called Yahweh as the natures of the two are distinct and irreconcilable.   I could go into complete detail, but I don't know what good it would do.  It is true that the writers of the bible seem to believe your statement that Yahweh is God, and that many people in the world believe it to be a fact.  

I hope that explains my opinions more completely.  

I don't disagree. God/Yahweh/Jehovah etc., has contradictory attributes and actions.

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Truthseeker007
13 hours ago, Mr Walker said:

While this is true in america and some western nations it is not true globally or as a percentage of the human population.

 

For years, the percentage of Americans who do not identify with any religion has been rising, a trend similar to what has been happening in much of Europe (including the United Kingdom). Despite this, in coming decades, the global share of religiously unaffiliated people is actually expected to fall, according to Pew Research Center’s new study on the future of world religions.

FT_17.04.05_projectionsUpdate_unaffilPopTo be clear, the total number of religiously unaffiliated people (which includes atheists, agnostics and those who do not identify with any religion in particular) is expected to rise in absolute terms, from 1.17 billion in 2015 to 1.20 billion in 2060. But this growth is projected to occur at the same time that other religious groups – and the global population overall – are growing even faster.

These projections, which take into account demographic factors such as fertility, age composition and life expectancy, forecast that people with no religion will make up about 13% of the world’s population in 2060, down from roughly 16% as of 2015.

http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2017/04/07/why-people-with-no-religion-are-projected-to-decline-as-a-share-of-the-worlds-population/

In any scenario, the Percentage of self identified atheists and non believers among humans, remains very low. 

 

There may be two reasons religious  people, and especially fundamentalists/creationists,    do not appear much on UM.

First the y are driven away by the  antagonism   ridicule, and personal attacks on them by some posters, but also the increase in religious belief is occurring in china, Africa and non western societies and these people are not represented on Um much, if a t all.

  Then of course, creationists are only a small percentage  of religious believers, at least within Christianity,  and have been for almost a century, as modern, science -based education has become almost universal in the  west. 

All very Interesting Mr.Walker! Thanks for your time in putting that together. I wonder why religious belief is starting to occur in China? I know in at least Africa a lot of missionaries go there spreading propaganda.

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Truthseeker007
18 hours ago, South Alabam said:

Basically the whole Bible. In it, we see a war that destroys pretty much all mankind within the prophecies. We see the Antichrist, beast, 666, all these things that men have tried to find the answers and meanings to. If all of these hidden things were known, it becomes hard to change the forthcoming destruction. So you hide these answers to be revealed at some later time, which would bring about peace, instead of utter destruction, killing all upon the face of the earth.

Isaiah 45:18 

For thus saith the LORD that created the heavens; God himself that formed the earth and made it; he hath established it, he created it not in vain, he formed it to be inhabited: I am the LORD; and there is none else.

 

 

Even Jesus spoke in proverbs to hide the truth.      

John 16:25 

These things have I spoken unto you in proverbs: but the time cometh, when I shall no more speak unto you in proverbs, but I shall shew you plainly of the Father.

Matthew 11:25 

At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes.

 

 

 

 

I only see the Bible as a book of symbols, analogies and stories. I guess what I am saying is I only think of the Bible as just another book among the millions of other books. I don't make the Bible my reality but it is an interesting book to say the least.

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Guyver
10 hours ago, Truthseeker007 said:

I only see the Bible as a book of symbols, analogies and stories. I guess what I am saying is I only think of the Bible as just another book among the millions of other books. I don't make the Bible my reality but it is an interesting book to say the least.

Right, but many people don’t.  They see the Bible as literal and they believe it.  And there are those who see the Bible as symbolic but still believe it as truth.  I think this is what the OP was getting at.  

Like anything else, people believe the Bible like that because it makes them feel good.  Or perhaps they were conditioned that way.  Thinking of the Mormons.....why are there so many?  It is because they were raised that way.  Childhood conditioning is the fabric of a persons being.  I’m sure there are other reasons....but these came immediately to mind.

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XenoFish
6 minutes ago, Guyver said:

Like anything else, people believe the Bible like that because it makes them feel good.  Or perhaps they were conditioned that way.  Thinking of the Mormons.....why are there so many?  It is because they were raised that way.  Childhood conditioning is the fabric of a persons being.  I’m sure there are other reasons....but these came immediately to mind.

Read your scripture, say your prayers, attend your religious temple of choice, ad infinitium.

 

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Scudbuster

 

Now here's a priest with a very good take on everything:

 

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Mr Walker
18 hours ago, Truthseeker007 said:

All very Interesting Mr.Walker! Thanks for your time in putting that together. I wonder why religious belief is starting to occur in China? I know in at least Africa a lot of missionaries go there spreading propaganda.

The Chinese have always been a very spiritual peole but mainly with traditional beliefs.  This was repressed for a long time by the communists,  but while still strongly controlled,  the authorities are now allowing a form of state Christianity 

 People denied their spiritual side are often hungry for a renewal of it, and china has one of the fastest growing christian populations in the world 

 

China on course to become 'world's most Christian nation' within 15 years  (from 2015)

The number of Christians in Communist China is growing so steadily that it by 2030 it could have more churchgoers than America

China's Protestant community, which had just one million members in 1949, has already overtaken those of countries more commonly associated with an evangelical boom. In 2010 there were more than 58 million Protestants in China compared to 40 million in Brazil and 36 million in South Africa, according to the Pew Research Centre's Forum on Religion and Public Life.

Prof Yang, a leading expert on religion in China, believes that number will swell to around 160 million by 2025. That would likely put China ahead even of the United States, which had around 159 million Protestants in 2010 but whose congregations are in decline.

By 2030, China's total Christian population, including Catholics, would exceed 247 million, placing it above Mexico, Brazil and the United States as the largest Christian congregation in the world, he predicted.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/china/10776023/China-on-course-to-become-worlds-most-Christian-nation-within-15-years.html

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GoldenWolf
On 1/6/2018 at 1:57 PM, bigjim36 said:

And yet the so called christian right rule the west. I say so called because their actions are far removed from Jesus' teachings, however they are in line with the christians behaviour during the dark ages! 

Sounds like the god of the old testament (which is the god of the new testament).

quote-the-god-of-the-old-testament-is-ar

Edited by Mystic Crusader
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Stubbly_Dooright
On 1/5/2018 at 11:56 AM, ChaosRose said:

I always get a kick out of the "let me use these quotes from the bible to explain why I believe the bible" folks. 

That usually loses me. Mostly so, because the quotes themselves seem to have to be translated to show what they are suppose to mean. I can't seem to see any sense in them, if it's just the quotes themselves. But, that's just me, and why I go to the next. 

On 1/5/2018 at 2:05 PM, bigjim36 said:

Does god have to figure into it at all? I'm an atheist but was born and raised catholic, it took me a long time to realise how indoctrined I was and an even longer time to become an athiest. I do not believe there is any type of god/supreme being/creator, none whatsoever. I do however believe in life after death, NOT heaven and hell I must stress but rather a continuance of energy. God has no part in it.

I think or believe this as well. And anything, my secular upbringing, I feel, has led me to be a spiritual believe, even in God, it it's the case, but material things, like the bible, I don't believe should be depended upon. I didn't say despised or ignored, just not as essential. 

I have some across varyin g degrees of written work, fiction and non-fiction, that seem to resonate with me, with the bible quotes, if I happen to come across them, just having a guess as to what it means. How can one, I feel from my personal observation, take bible quotes and get something universal from it? I can really understand how it might resonate personal to those, but over all, it always seem to have to have translations, and thus ambiguous in one might read it and understand it. 

On 1/6/2018 at 5:55 AM, XenoFish said:

People have forgotten the wisdom of pessimism. They'd rather have rose tinted spiritual goggles on.

Oh good. I'm glad I'm not the only one who sees the wisdom of pessimism. :D  Seriously, I do believe in this. 

Granted, most of the customer, when I say I'm not that fine, (when they ask) and I like it that way, laugh and pretty much understand and agree with me. One lady, didn't like it, and wanted to push the idea of me pushing my feelings to being ignorantly happy. That p***ed me off, and pretty much kind of nosy really. (she ended up insisting I took one of her religious business cards. ( Well, I ripped that puppy up and threw it in the trash right away. Sometimes, being down, gives a whole perspective and keeps one grounded, well, that is how I see it and will defend my right to think it. :yes: 

On 1/6/2018 at 10:54 AM, Guyver said:

I think I may be able to offer you a close second as I was once one of the people who would use scripture to prove these points, and used to believe as the people you wish to hear from.

It goes back to the basic belief that the bible is "God's book."  There are variations in this belief, many people believe that God actually wrote it....via the agency of the Holy Spirit.  That is, "holy men" were moved by God's Spirit to write the words down, and these words have been maintained flawlessly through the years to provide us the information about God we need......Jesus being the pinnacle of God's plan.  For Christian people, the entire Jewish HIstory with the OT as the forerunner was intended to allow us to believe in Christ when he was finally revealed.  

Other people believe that God actually breathed the words of the bible, as that's how they interpret the Greek word meaning for the term inspired.  So, basically since the bible is "God's book" and it represents the ultimate and only real truth, everything else is secondary, inferior or flawed.  This goes for the reasonings of man and even science itself.

They believe that evolution is one of the prime deceptions that keep people from believing in God - that we were not descended from apelike ancestors, but instead were intentionally created by God as we are right now.  Many accept the Genesis stories as literal or the symbolic expression of literal truth.  So, for many science is a form of evil - or deception - or the devil's work.  Their theology allows for "God's Opposite" in a real sense, a higher order being who exists as God's enemy, the enemy of the church, and really the ruler of this world who hates God, all the people in the world, and would like to cause us all to burn in firey hell.  FWIW.  

So now, I have a question. As a bookseller, I noticed many different versions of the bible, and varying translations of it. So, are they still the same? Are the points in it, the same, nearly word for word? 

I have seen bibles for Babtists, Catholics, and so on and so on. If it's the same, when the different versions. And with the different versions, which one is more correct over the other one? 

 

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XenoFish

Good to see you back mama bear.

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Stubbly_Dooright
1 hour ago, XenoFish said:

Good to see you back mama bear.

Glad to be back, my son. :) Though, a little bit at a time. But, I'm trying. :D  

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eight bits

Howdy, Stubbly

So now, I have a question. As a bookseller, I noticed many different versions of the bible, 
and varying translations of it. So, are they still the same? 
Are the points in it, the same, nearly word for word?

No. Not that close. Plus there are the deuterocanonicals aka apocrypha that are included in some (but not included in other) "Protestant" Bibles and in all full "Catholic" ones.

And with the different versions, which one is more correct over the other one?

That's very difficult to say, difficult even to say what "correct" means. In the original language in ancient times, there were different versions of the "same" book. Maybe more than one of them is "correct" (e.g. different "editions" by the same or closely related authors).

Translation? It's hopeless. Here are the "correct" translations I can think of off-hand for the first sentence of the earliest canonical Gospel, Mark:

As Isaiah wrote, ...

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ; as Isaiah wrote...

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, son of God; as Isaiah wrote...

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God; as Isaiah wrote...

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ; as the prophets wrote...

The beginning of the gospel of Jesus Christ was, as the prophets wrote, ...

and so on. "Gospel" itself is a coined word in the original language, maybe it should be translated "good news." Then again, maybe not (gospel might be a specific kind of good news). We're still on just the first sentence, and we haven't got the correct version yet (or we do, but we don't which one).

Hopeless.

Somewhere on your shelves, there are Bibles that are labeled "study Bibles." Those offer footnotes with the important known variations, as well as "cross linking" (lots of Jewish Bible material appears in the New Testament, for example). Also, there are Bibles like the (Catholic) New American Bible and its recent revised edition that are pretty much study Bibles, but for whatever reason don't label themselves that way (at least not that I remember).

Edited by eight bits
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Truthseeker007
 

The Chinese have always been a very spiritual peole but mainly with traditional beliefs.  This was repressed for a long time by the communists,  but while still strongly controlled,  the authorities are now allowing a form of state Christianity 

 People denied their spiritual side are often hungry for a renewal of it, and china has one of the fastest growing christian populations in the world 

 

China on course to become 'world's most Christian nation' within 15 years  (from 2015)

The number of Christians in Communist China is growing so steadily that it by 2030 it could have more churchgoers than America

China's Protestant community, which had just one million members in 1949, has already overtaken those of countries more commonly associated with an evangelical boom. In 2010 there were more than 58 million Protestants in China compared to 40 million in Brazil and 36 million in South Africa, according to the Pew Research Centre's Forum on Religion and Public Life.

Prof Yang, a leading expert on religion in China, believes that number will swell to around 160 million by 2025. That would likely put China ahead even of the United States, which had around 159 million Protestants in 2010 but whose congregations are in decline.

By 2030, China's total Christian population, including Catholics, would exceed 247 million, placing it above Mexico, Brazil and the United States as the largest Christian congregation in the world, he predicted.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/asia/china/10776023/China-on-course-to-become-worlds-most-Christian-nation-within-15-years.html

Oh boy just what the world needs.....Chinese Christians.:blink:

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XenoFish
22 minutes ago, Truthseeker007 said:

Oh boy just what the world needs.....Chinese Christians.:blink:

Choose your poison: Christianty or Islam.

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