I don't care what religion you are, this is disgusting. Many thanks to whoever decided to protect the young boy and shame the pedophile.
We're posting this in the name of justice. Human beings tend to ignore problems in their community until these problems are exposed. For instance, Muslim countries are being called to account for stonings, marriages to child-brides, abuse of women, etc., and we're seeing a positive result. We call on Muslims to deal with the man in this video, and to defend boys from predators.
*****UPDATE***** For some reason, this video starts playing whenever someone comes to Answering Muslims (instead of playing when someone clicks "Play"), and we've gotten some complaints as a result. So I'm replacing the embedded video with a link to it. You can watch the video here.
poor kid...that's disgusting
Come on now.. Acts 17 demagogues at it again.
1. im sure there are pedophiles in the Muslim community, a lot of which probably goes unreported.
2. That was a little weird
3. but if i got a photo of you kissing your daughter. I could tell people that you were a pedophile too. That could have been his grandson, but only God knows. You dont know what that was all about..
I like how you add your own captions. It is kind of like other things that you write your own narrative to. why didnt the camera man call the cops?
if you care to, you should check out this link. its food for thought regarding the park 51 facility in Ny.
Is Hezballah more tolerant than Americans?
I am truly shocked that you are trying to justify this man's actions!!! Are you seriously implying that kissing your daughter is in some way equivalent to a "grandfather" touching this boy the way he did???
"You don't know what that was all about..."
Um...touching a boy in that manner is no excuse!
"Why didn't the camera man call the cops?"
How do you know he didn't? Besides towards the end of the video, another person approached the pedophile.
I do not think thate placing this evidence here, where so many muslim friends off ours came and exult thate islam is the most moral religion in the World since no problems thate are founde in the West is found in it, muste be confronted withe the disgusting reallity thate others prefer not to see... just an example: only 0,1% of the catholic priestes commited paedophilicus acts and the media were on the catholics like woolfs uppon sheeps; but the BBC portraited in 2004 (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/south_asia/4084951.stm) thate this kind off actions is banal in madrassas in Pakistan (and in other places of the muslim world) and, off course, the child brides, following the example of muhammad's marriage withe poor baby Aisha, in muslim communities is as commun as drinking fresh water, but the media do prefer to ignor this things...
you see: some people, not following the teachings off Jesus, make disgusting things and everyone talks aboutt thate; many people, following the example off muhammad, commits this disgusting things and no one seams to care...
That video did not stay up long. I wonder if You Tube would have been so quick if it had been a Catholiv Priest or a Baptist Pastor. But the real question is is this tyoe of behavior sanctioned by either the Qur'an or the Haddith?
That video did not stay up long. I wonder if You Tube would have been so quick if it had been a Catholiv Priest or a Baptist Pastor. But the real question is is this tyoe of behavior sanctioned by either the Qur'an or the Haddith?
And it's Ramadan! The time of year when Shaytan goes away or is locked up or something like that. Although, I suppose the video could be from any other month, too.
Video has been removed by Youtube... Can you publish the same on a diff website such as Vimeo, etc...
David, I think it's better to keep it factual in this blog rather than emotional. Truly, who cares! They have pedophiles for sure and it happens in Mosques, but I don't come to this blog to find this sort of information. You guys inspire me with your ministry. I don't find this blog post relevant to your ministry to Muslims. Thanks.
Yeah, because we know Christian clergy NEVER commit these kinds of crimes. Ever hear of the catholic priest sex scandal? why don't you visit the website. http://stopbaptistpredators.org/index.htm
Abuse, sexually, physically or any kind is ALWAYS wrong, but don't give the impression that it never happens in the Christian world.
It seemed suspicious to me but even if it there was nothing to it how can you say Acts17 is doing demagogy again?Of course not,Acts17 is a serious blog.From my experience few non-Muslims know the very negative aspects of Islam and the media says nothing out of fear or lack of intelligence.In the meantime if one day Muslims become the majority in your country they will treat you as a second-class person,like they do in Malaysia,Indonesia,Pakistan,etc.
The ordinary Muslim can not bring himself to reject Islam for emotional reasons,it is hard to admit your identity is rotten inside,that your people are dummies in that sense.It is too much to their pride.
Did not I acknowledge such despicalble acts happen in the Christian community.? But almost every Muslin is in a state of denial about what happens in the Muslim community. These includes stonings,bombings, honour killings and female mutaltion. Now all these things is that these are condemned by bible and the teachings of Chriat. Are condemned by the Qur'an the Haddith and the example of Mohammed?
Hi Mike... are you a.k.a. mike? maybe you can read whate I wrotte to mike if you, Mike, are not a.k.a. mike... see: the problem we have here is, perhaps, explainned in 2 allineas:
a) Christianity do aknowledge the problem off paedophilhia thate some nominal christians have; islam does not;
b) western media do attack Christianity on paedophilia cases; they do not do the same when the problem is islam;
a problem cannot be soolved unless it is recognized as such... butt the deepest problem is thate muslims do not are hable to see this problem because they habe to say, as the qur'an does, that muhammad -- that had some strange sexual behaviours with 8 years old babys -- is the perfect example...
This is an OLD video. I've seen the link to it posted in many Arabic speaking rooms.
No, Fernando. Mike is a self-avowed apostate from Christianity and mike (let's call him "Ike" to help us keep track) is a follower of Muhammad. The interesting thing is that Mike and Ike, for all their apparent differences, which merely comes down to a matter of taste, have no ojective way to account for their belief that pedophilia is, as Mike said and Ike assumed, "always wrong". That's why you shouldn't let your kids around Mike and Ike (or the like); it could be bad for their teeth (or worse).
Anthony, can you clarify what you are saying? Are you saying that non-Christians like myself are the equivalent of child molesters? If so, that's quite a ridiculous statement considering all the sexual abuse that happens in religious circles and communities. And your standard for morality, The Bible, often contradicts its own standards. And one of the many reasons that I still acknowledge the strong possibility that a higher power exists is because I do believe in moral absolutes. However, within those moral absolutes are a lot of gray areas.
You know Anthony, I just reread your post. It's one thing to disagree with me, but to resort to implying that i'm a sex offender really is despicable and shows your true colors. How hypocritical of you. You know, for people who claim to be filled with the holy spirit, Christians sure do tend to consistently be the biggest jerks I know and Anthony's post only confirms this.
By the way, the polls by Barna (an evangelical himself) reveal that there is no difference in the behavior and conduct of evangelical Christians when compared to "the world." In some cases, such as divorce, Christians have a higher rate. Way to confirm Barna's poll, Anthony! And again why don't you work on fixing the sex abuse problems in your circle before you start throwing stones at others.
His right hand should be chopped off and all in all he should be put to death - sorry for this approach but in those cases I am for the death penality. King Davi/John Rambo Style.
@Mike: your arguments, attacks and explanations indicate that you need a lot to learn.
Of course I don't see this video as: Ah that's islam you see, they are all pedophiles... - for me, it just shows that the claims of islam, being the SUPERDUPA religion, caliming to be perfect in any sense - can never be taken seriously.
Mike, quit whining. Your nebulous "higher power" and "gray areas" leave you with no basis on which to call me a jerk or even to condemn me even if I am a jerk.
Of course I wasn't seriously calling you a child molester, but your denial of Christianity leaves you with no sure basis on which to condemn such behavior. I was just pointing that out in a colorful way. Pardon me if you are color blind and can only see in shades of gray.
Anthony, well, excuuuuusse me for taking offense at your stupid statement. But then again maybe I shouldn't have been offended considering the source.
Again, your statement that because I don't believe the Bible is the inerrant, inspired word of God , I have no standard for morality is quite ridiculous considering the morality in the Bible is quite unclear in several instances. That being said, I no longer take the attitude towards the Bible that says, "either it's all true or none of it is true" as I think truth can be found in the Bible. On the other hand, I think there are things in the bible that are completely wrong.
But, this conversation isn't going anywhere, and I'm done here. I'll let you have the last word. A word of advice for you though, Anthony. You seem to be one of those internet tough guys, running your mouth and antagonizing people behind the keyboard. I wonder if you have the guts to talk to people in real life the way you do to people on the internet. If you do talk that way to others, hopefully you know how to put up your dukes and fight for real.
Hello David, I dont know if you will post my comment (as you have failed to do so in the past....but I'm compelled to write). Please, for the love of the, "All Mighty,"
take this video down....it's sick!, disgusting!, perverted!, and inexcusable. You are only perpuating this act by keeping it up.....it really benefits no one..
Any type of offense against children regardless of: religion, ethnic background, culture, and/or society...should be dealt with swiftly and decisively...
So please, I appeal to your humanity remove this filth...think about the feelings, humiliation, embarrasement, and the psychological trauma of the child and his parents......
As I posted before a person in your position has great responsibility...
Apostates and others who are proud of their infidelity love to pretend they reject(ed) Christianity because they are "tough-minded", but as Mike illustrates, when push comes to shove, they are less confident in their ability to resolve questions of truth by what they can pound out on a keyboard then they are in the jihad approach, where truth is decided by duking it out on the streets.
Of course Mike may not like me portaying his approach as a form of "might makes right" and may say that this isn't what he meant at all, but in such a case I would simply ask him again, "By what standard do you object to someone doing this sort of thing?"
The fact is, by his own admission, his amorphous god, whom he says may or may not exist, has not spoken a non-garbled word in history (assuming he would even allege that his "god" has spoken at all), and thus he is bereft of any clear and objective standard by which to pour contempt on such a practice (or anything else he believes is "always wrong", for that matter).
And just so it isn't overlooked, pedophilia usually involves one person imposing his (or her) will on another person. If might makes right isn't his view, where has his "god" clearly said otherwise?
By the way, notice the self-defeating contradiction lurking in Mike's remarks: on the one hand, he asserts that the bible, into which he is evidently reading the character of his "god", is an unclear and ambiguous book; on the other hand, he asserts that the Bible contradicts itself. But if the Bible is not clear, how does he know the statements are actually and not just apparently contradictory?
With reasoning like this, Mike's apostasy is far from surprising.
Well, Shoot. Anthony, your last post lured me back here to make at least one more post. Rest assured, I was not physically threatening you. I was just saying that I suspect that several people act a certain way on the internet that they wouldn't dare act in real life, and if they do act this antagonistically, they better be prepared to physically defend themselves. I will give you the benefit of the doubt and suspect that if you and I were having a rational conversation in real life, you would act much more courteous and less mocking despite our strong disagreements. And if you did act this way in real life towards me, I would not physically harm you. I would just walk away.
To address your last statement, I would have to disagree that my remarks are self-defeating. One of MANY reasons I find the Bible unclear and ambiguous in several places is BECAUSE of the many contradictions that I see in the book(s).
"But if the Bible is not clear, how does he know the statements are actually and not just apparently contradictory?"
That's a fair question and that's why I still like to study the Bible and other religious texts, but I no longer go into studying any "Holy" book with the premise that it is the word of god that cannot have errors in it.
So, just out of curiosity, Anthony,would you say that you understand and obey ALL of the Bible and that all of it is completely clear to you? The strongest evangelical/fundamentalist Christians I know wouldn't make such a claim. If your answer to my question is yes, you must really be a super saint!
Oh, and Anthony, I would hope your objection to crime, no matter what kind it is, would certainly have more substance than "X and /or Y is wrong because the Bible says it is wrong."
Also, you seem to imply that non-Christians, because they doubt the Bible is the ultimate authority on life and spiritual matters, are more likely to commit criminal acts than Christians. Am I understanding you right? Please correct me if I'm wrong. If I am reading you correctly, that's interesting reasoning considering statistics consistently show that there is no real difference in the behavior of Christians when compared to non-Christians. When I was a believer, I used to do jail ministry. It was my experience that the jails were filled with people who believed the Bible was the inerrant inspired word of God. Just some pastries for thought.
Hello David, I have no doubt, you are a coward and use this forum to promote your hate. Your refusal to post my comments doesn't bother me..it's your refusal to acknowdlege your hatred for peoples of other faiths.......and your need to continue to perpuate hate.......surely not fruits of the All Mighty.......may G-D judge according to your deeds...
"You are of your father the devil, and you want to do the desires of your father. He was a murderer from the beginning, and does not stand in the truth because there is no truth in him. Whenever he speaks a lie, he speaks from his own nature, for he is a liar and the father of lies.
ps...once again I appeal to your sense of humanity, you being a father yourself and not fearing
G-D (evident from your actions).....think of the psychological damage to the child and his parents......
Since you returned, you should have addressed my original contention, one that I have repeated three times now. Instead you continue to engage in more bellyaching, as if I am to blame any time a thin-skinned covenant-breaker with an axe to grind against Christianity comes on a Christian blog and repeatedly takes shots at the Bible and doesn't like it when someone returns fire. But it goes with the territory, and if you don’t like it, then you should find something else to do with your life. If Christianity is false, then go build mud castles at the beach. (And when the tide comes in and washes all your work away, or at least blurs the clearly defined lines and barriers and edifices you have built on sand, creating a great big gray area, don’t get upset with the ocean for reminding you of the futility of your life without Christ.)
As for your attempt to resurrect your ambiguity/contradictions claim, you have either proven my point or you have changed your argument (or perhaps your original argument was just ambiguous).
Originally you appeared to be claiming that the texts of the Bible are unclear, but in saying that MANY individual statements contradict MANY other statements, you are necessarily assuming that you have a clear understanding of what those statements mean in themselves, otherwise you can't claim they are actually contradictory.
What you now appear to be asserting is not that the texts in themselves are ambiguous, but that the attempt to systematize them into a coherent overall message is not possible given that what is clearly said in certain verses contradicts what is clearly said in other verses.
In response to this, a response that also answers your question about whether I understand everything in the Bible, I would maintain that the Bible is basically clear but that doesn't mean that everything in the Bible is equally clear or that it is equally clear unto all. Some things are harder to understand than others, and ignorant and unstable people have been known to shirk the task of responsible exegesis when approaching such passages and have either come up with false doctrines or have charged the Bible with contradictions. I certainly don't deny that it takes work to understand some things that are said in the Bible, but to me the proper response to this is not apostasy to an ephemeral and mute "Heavenly Watchamacallit" or "Higher Power", but faithfulness to the God who is there and has not been silent. Resolution on such matters does not come by turning to the unintelligible rattling and humming of a Heavenly Power Plant, but by putting your ear closer to the Word of the Living God.
The wisdom of such an approach is seen in this: the Psalmist said that those who worship worthless idols that can neither hear nor talk will end up like them. We can see this clearly in your case. When asked to account for your assertion that some things are “always wrong”, you just rattle and hum and start prattling about something else, such as whether believers live comparably better lives than unbelievers. But not only does this claim do nothing to address the question of how you can justify or account for your assumption that there are absolute moral standards that permit you to say with confidence that things like pedophilia are wrong, but it rests on other assumptions that I simply don’t agree with, such as the idea that just because somebody walks into a church and announces that they are a Christian then they must be a Christian. But this makes about as much sense as walking into a McDonald’s and declaring that you are a Big Mac. Moreover, and more importantly, the Bible itself clearly denies this assumption. Jesus said, “If you continue in my word, then you are truly my disciple”. For you to assume otherwise and argue against Christianity on such a basis is simply to engage in question begging.
And so when all is said and done, while some of your statements might be attractive to other unbelievers, there is a big difference between putting on your daisy dukes and putting up your intellectual dukes.
Anthony, I will do my best to answer the assertion that you say I'm avoiding. My motivation for not doing wrong actions is that I don't want to hurt others. It's not because a "holy" book tells me what I should or shouldn't do, and as I said earlier, I think the morality in the Bible can be awfully ambiguous, so I don't think it's always the best standard for morality. Murder, theft, physical and sexual abuse of others and other wrong acts hurt others. That is why I do not want to do those actions. And i applaud the Bible and any other "holy" book when it condemns these actions. As I said earlier, I don't take the attitude towards the bible that says "either it's all true or none of it is true." Just because I no longer believe the Bible to be the inerrant inspired word of God, doesn't mean that I can't get anything meaningful and beneficial to my life from it.
Also, isn't it true that there are other books and writings that are considered "holy writ" that condemn harming others, dishonesty and other wrong actions? It seems to me, Anthony, that you are saying that one can only have an objective sense of right and wrong if they believe the Bible, and only The Bible, to be the inerrant and inspired word of God. But what about other "holy" books that condemn wrong actions?
Hopefully I answered the question that you say I'm avoiding to your satisfaction. If not, let me know, and I'll try again. Sometimes communication electronically can be hard. If you want to, you can send me an email and I'll give you my number and perhaps talking over the phone will clarify things. I'll give you the benefit of the doubt that you are not a stalker. :-)
Oh, and I know many people will accuse me of picking and choosing what I want to believe from the Bible. And you know what? You're right! I do pick and choose what I want to believe from the Bible. But you know what I learned as an evangelical/fundamentalist Christian for over a decade? Even the most conservative Christian who claims that the Bible is the word of God without error picks and chooses what he wants to believe from the Bible. In fact, it's impossible not to do this. Why? The Bible was written thousands of years ago in different places in different cultures that are entirely foreign to the culture we live in today. But don't worry. I'm not singling out the Bible. I believe the same thing about the Koran and probably other "holy" books.
You are right to worry that someone might charge you with being arbitrary, but there is an equally serious charge that is also relevant in light of your repeated (and unjustified) criticism of the Bible: ambiguity.
Let me first address the problem of your arbitrariness. I asked you by what clear and objective standard you determine that something is “always wrong”, and also how you account for such a standard given your rejection of the Triune God in favor of some celestial tapioca.
When you say in response that your motivation for not doing certain things is that you don’t want to hurt anyone, you are addressing an entirely different question then the one I asked, a fact that indicates your apostasy took place in the absence of any clear understanding of the salient issues, at least as touching on this matter. Motivation is certainly relevant to the question of one’s overall ethical perspective and what constitutes a good act, and Christians of course have a definite view of what the proper motive of a good act is – i.e., faith working by love – but that isn’t the question I asked you. I asked you by what standard you judge an act to be good, and also how you account for such a standard given your denial of the Biblical God who has revealed Himself in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments and above all in His incarnate Son, the Lord Jesus Christ.
Even if you meant to say that the standard of morality is not hurting people, you still have a number of problems, not the least of which is that there are many times when, as I am sure you would agree but just haven’t thought through, it is not wrong to hurt someone. Surely you don’t wish to tell us that dentists are evil, do you? If not, then how does your ethical theory distinguish between good acts that hurt people and good acts that don’t? In other words, by what standard do you judge one act of hurting a person to be evil, let us say the act of murdering a person, from another act of hurting someone that you would deem to be good, such as pulling an abscess tooth?
Many other problems plague your response on this score, but I will pass over that for now in favor of dealing with the problem that puts the very quandary you suggest the Bible has – a problem I have addressed, mind you, and without any attempted reply on your part – squarely in your own lap. Given that you are not settled on the existence or non-existence of a god, even though of course you wouldn’t identify this god who may exist with the Lord Jesus Christ since it was His blood that you trampled underfoot when you left the faith, I assume you are equally uncertain on the nature of this god. If you do not know if such a god exists, then you also do not know what kind of nature or character he/she/it has. Furthermore, you also would not be in a position to say if this god has revealed itself or what pleases or displeases it. This simply follows from your diffidence on whether a god even exists. And without any concrete revelation of this god, you can’t tell us who and what man is in relation to this being. Were we made in his or her or its image? If so, what does that mean if we don’t have any clear idea of who or what he is? How are we as the image bearers of this unknown god supposed to reflect or image him in our behavior?
To boil down what I am driving at here, given the above, it is unclear on your approach why you believe it is wrong to hurt people. What is man that we should be mindful of him or be concerned about hurting him?
In the end, your attempt to leave Christianity and take bits and pieces of it with you, such as the idea that some things are always wrong, lands you in arbitrariness and ambiguity, the very things you suggest warranted your apostasy.
Anthony, standards....motivations..... Are you sure we're not arguing over semantics here? I don't think there's much of a difference, at least in my opinion.
I'll try to answer your main objection, but you write so much that it's hard to address everything you state in one post. I'm on vacation from work, but that ends Wednesday, so while I have the time, I'll do my best to answer you.
Regarding a dentist, or a doctor or chiropractors (if you consider those legitimate health workers :-) )yes, they do have to hurt people, but the reason for their hurting people is for a greater good. Also, they usually do this with the patient's permission, at least I hope so! The patient can choose not to undergo surgery or whatever the procedure is. Physical and/or sexual abuse of anyone, murder and other wrong actions produce no greater good for the victim and the victim doesn't have a choice. Also, what a health practitioner does is legal. A crime is illegal. That's a big difference too, don't you think?
I know I haven't answered your main question, but I'm getting to that. One's belief that a God exists or doesn't exist is based on faith. I don't think anyone can prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that a God exists or doesn't exist. I think there is evidence that there is a Creator/God/Higher power, but evidence isn't the same thing as proof beyond a shadow of a doubt. Now, I believe that much of creation is too complex to say it just came together randomly. I also believe in moral absolutes. These are two things that I see as evidence that a God/Higher Power/Creator exists. However, it doesn't necessarily mean the Christian God or Allah Or the God of mormonism exists. It's just evidence that some kind of creator exists. And as I said, many of these moral absolutes are contained in various "holy" books.
So, why do I believe it's wrong to hurt people? Well, I want to treat people as I want to be treated (That's Biblical!) I also generally just want to help others and do my part in making the world a better place. Murdering, sexually and/or physically abusing people and other wrong actions do not make the world a better place and do not help my fellow man or woman. By the way, I don't want to give the impression that I'm some great humanitarian. I'm not, but I try to do what I can when I can. And I don't do these things because I think it will earn me a spot in heaven or rewards in heaven.
I guess if I had to label myself, it would be an agnostic theist or deist. I do think there is strong evidence that there is a God/creator/Higher power, but I strongly doubt that he is actively involved in the affairs of this world and our everyday lives. But in no way, can I call myself a Christian. Doing so would be dishonest and misleading.
I hope this clearly answered your question, Anthony. But no matter what I say, I'm starting to doubt that I can answer it to your satisfaction. The reason for this is because you are operating from the premise that unless one believes that The Bible is 100% God-Breathed and 100% error-free, then that person cannot have a clear sense of right and wrong. But I shouldn't be surprised. After all, that view is consistent with a fundamentalist worldview. In fundamentalism, pretty much EVERYTHING is a black and white issue. There's never grey areas in this mindset. I'm not saying this to reflect negatively on you. I'm just saying it shows the major difference in how you and I think. And in no way, am I a better thinker or more intelligent than you. It's just that through my own studies and personal experiences, I can't see the world in the fundamentalist box that I used to see it in.If you can, great! I can respect that. But I'm not there anymore.
I didn't know we were arguing about the difference between the motivation for doing something and the standard by which we determine whether what we are doing is good or bad. I simply mentioned that you conflated these two very different things and assumed that you wouldn't have any difficulty seeing the difference once I pointed it out to you. But if that isn't clear to you, then that is fine, although I can't be expected to labor under the same confusion in my response to you. So throughout what I have to say I will continue to maintain what all philosopers do, i.e. there is a distinction between the motivation one has to do something and the criteria or standard by which that action is evaluated to be either good or bad.
In fact, just to mention one way that should hopefully make this distinction easy for you to see, not only can we ask whether an action is good or bad, i.e. good or bad as determined by its conformity to a certain standard, but we can also ask if a person's motive for doing something is good or bad.
Putting that aside, your last response shows that you now (sort of) realize that your original attempt to provide a standard (i.e. "motiation" in your terminology) was not a "good" one. Now you want to say, contrary to the idea that it is always wrong to hurt people, that it can be okay to hurt people provided it is for the greater good. But this of course doesn't provide us with a standard either. By what standard do we determine if an action, whether hurtful or not, is for the greater good? Your answer does not tell us.
Moreover, it simply isn't true that it is only okay to hurt someone when we have their permission. Not only do we do things all the time to "hurt" our children that they don't want us to do, such as choking down that nasty tasting medicine when they are sick, but we also hurt people without their permission when it isn't for their good at all. For example, if a criminal is trying to murder someone else, the police can use lethal force to stop them. This might be for the good of the intended victim, but it isn't for the good of the would-be perpetrator.
At this point you might be tempted to say, getting further from your "it is never okay to hurt someone" approach, that an action is good not based on whether or not it is for that person's greater good but whether it is for the greater good of society. Rather than respond to this, I will simply wait and see if that is the route you want to take.
In the end I think it is already more than clear that you have no idea how your "non-fundamentalist" worldview can provide you with the warrant for calling anything good or evil. And there is a very good reason for this. You worship an unknown god, a god thought of along deistic lines. A god in “a box”, if you will, shut out of his own creation. Since your god is not actively involved in the world, not only can you not point to any clear and objective standard by which to call anything evil, but you also cannot claim that this god even cares whether we hurt people or not. You also cannot say whether or not “he” cares if we hurt people for the greater good.
The very fact that you continue to insist on the existence of moral absolutes even though your anti-Christian philosophy militates against it shows that the god you worship as unknown is more actively involved with you then you would like to believe. Your whole life is conditioned by Him. He is the one who determined the history that led up to your existence; when, where, and to whom you would be born; and has continually revealed Himself to you, both inwardly, through your very constitution as His image bearer, and outwardly, by His continuing providence, whereby he upholds and governs the world.
As much as you want to suppress the truth about Him, you simply can't escape what you are, i.e. His image bearer, and you can't escape His world. That is why you continue to insist on identifying some things as good and other things as evil even though your truth suppressing philosophy leaves you no way to account for it.
"22Paul then stood up in the meeting of the Areopagus and said: "Men of Athens! I see that in every way you are very religious. 23For as I walked around and looked carefully at your objects of worship, I even found an altar with this inscription: TO AN UNKNOWN GOD. Now what you worship as something unknown I am going to proclaim to you.
24"The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. 25And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else. 26From one man he made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live. 27God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. 28'For in him we live and move and have our being.' As some of your own poets have said, 'We are his offspring.'
29"Therefore since we are God's offspring, we should not think that the divine being is like gold or silver or stone—an image made by man's design and skill. 30In the past God overlooked such ignorance, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent. 31For he has set a day when he will judge the world with justice by the man he has appointed. He has given proof of this to all men by raising him from the dead." (Acts 17:22-31)
Hello Anthony, I guess I could I could answer your objections, but before I do can I ask you a question? But just so I can be clear where you stand, can I just make sure I understand where you are coming from?
Are you of the opinion that non-Christians, whether they are agnostics, atheists, muslims ,hindus or whatever, cannot have an absolute sense of right and wrong because they do not believe the Bible to be inerrant and the 100% inspired word of God? Am I summing up your view accurately? Please correct me if I'm wrong. Also, do you believe the Bible is without error and is literally the word of God? Again, I'm not asking this to try and set you up for something. I just want to know for sure where you stand.
And yes, if I sound like I don't have all the answers, it is because it is true. I don't have all the answers. There are a lot of things I don't know the answer to and I have no problem admitting this. I will admit right now that I am ignorant about a lot of things. But I'm also learning a lot more and rest assured that I have read plenty of Christian apologetics. Despite my admission that there is so much that I do not know, the more I learn and the more experiences I have in this complicated world, I can no longer embrace the evangelical/fundamentalist Christian worldview and this is for several reasons. Those reasons are a discussion for a another time.
I will finish this response by saying this. There are times when I miss the days when I was entrenched solidly in Christian fundamentalism. Why? I'm a man who hates uncertainty and being in limbo. Fundamentalism provides certainty and leads one to believe that they have all the answers or almost all of the answers. Of course, I now see many of those answers as shallow and spiritually, and intellectually unfulfilling, but of course there was a time when I embraced those answers and they gave me peace. Now...not so much.
Anthony, one other question. Weren't at least a few of the founding fathers of this nation deists? Do you not believe they had an absolute sense of right and wrong?
Oh, and other thing (sorry). You're right. God is unknown to me. I don't see how I can "know" someone or something that won't talk to me, I can't see, and I can't hear, or experience with any of the five senses.
As a friend of mine once said, "God and I aren't on speaking terms. He doesn't talk to me, and so I don't talk to him." :-(
I believe the Bible in the original autographs is theopneustos, God-breathed.
I would say that atheists, agnostics, Muslims, and others, have an absolute sense of right and wrong, but that isn't the same as to say they can account for absolute standards of morality. God has revealed Himself to all men, and because all men inescapably know Him they can't escape having a sense of right and wrong. However, because they suppress the truth about Him, a truth they at least know through creation and conscience if not also through God's redemptive revelation in the Scriptures, they are not able to account for the sense of right and wrong that they have. If you want an example of someone who has a sense of right and wrong and yet is not be able to account for it in terms of what they espouse, review our previous discussion.
When you say you don't know everything I am afraid you are missing the point. It isn't just that you know some things but don't know others. I maintain that in principle, because of your denial of God, you don't know anything. Those who deny God are not simply smart people with gaps in their knowledge that need to be filled in, whether with God or something else; rather, unbelievers are fools who need to exercise repentance unto a knowledge of the truth. The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom, but fools despise wisdom and instruction. And in Christ are deposited all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge.
Of course, to remind you of something I said a moment ago, unbelievers do know things, such as that pedophilia is wrong, but they don't know this in terms of their God-denying approach to things. They know this because, contrary to what they tell themselves, they do know God.
Let me illustrate this a different way. Suppose there was a person who said air does not exist. Suppose further that we were having a debate with such a person and we told him that he wouldn't be able to breathe if what he is saying were true. What would you say if the person replied, "Are you saying I am not breathing?"
If you are like me, you would say: "Well, if what you are saying is true, i.e. if there really is no air, then breathing would be impossible. The fact that you still continue to breathe even though you say you don't believe in the existence of air gives the lie to your claim that air does not exist."
You are like the above man. You believe there are moral absolutes, but you deny the preconditions that are necessary for this claim. Your very ability to breathe, i.e. your ability to make moral judgments which presuppose standards of morality that all men know, depends upon what you deny. God is the very atmosphere that makes it possible for you to breathe, morally speaking. In God we live and move and have our being. The god of deism who is away on a vacation or on the toilet does not provide the preconditions that are necessary for your belief that their is such a thing as absolute standards of morality that we can know and that we are obligated to live up to.
By the way, thanks for your little testimonial above. I, too, can testify that in Christ there is certainty and peace, and that those who do not know Him are without hope and without God in the world. By the grace of God I am very grateful that I don't have to say I miss the days of knowing Him and the certainty and peace that comes from the same. I lament that you can no longer say this.
Terrible event for the young boy. I hope justice is done to that man.
Also, a comment on this "Are you of the opinion that non-Christians, whether they are agnostics, atheists, muslims ,hindus or whatever, cannot have an absolute sense of right and wrong because they do not believe the Bible to be inerrant and the 100% inspired word of God? Am I summing up your view accurately? Please correct me if I'm wrong. Also, do you believe the Bible is without error and is literally the word of God?"
First, whether someone believes the Bible is without error or literally the Word of God, is secondary to the objective fact that it is (or as the skeptic would say, or is not). Belief does not make something true. Nor is it true because Christians believe it. It is true, therefore Christians believe it.
Secondly, unbelievers may certainly have some sense of right and wrong. That this is the case seems plainly evident. It is also plainly evident that those without Christ have this righteousness marred by the corruptions of their own heart. There is a complete and total affect of sin upon the whole man. Man is not necessarily as evil as he/she can be, but there is not an area of the whole person that is left unaffected and uncorrupted by sin.
Hello Anthony, thank you for answering my questions. You believe (correct me if I'm summing up what you said incorrectly) that the Bible is the word of God and is completely without error; All unbelievers, whether they are a muslim, atheist, agnostic deist, or whatever cannot account for absolute standards of morality due to the fact that they deny that the Bible is the inerrant word of God; and all non-Christians are fools.
These are all beliefs of faith, and therefore any attempt to show my standards/motivation for morality using reasoning and arguments apart from the idea that only the Bible is the absolute standard for morality and spiritual matters, will not satisfy you.
I'm sorry that my attempts to show why I try to live a moral life have failed to satisfy you, but in the end, it is ultimately me who is responsible for how I live and my reasons for attempting to live a moral life have kept me on the right side of the law and out of jail, at least so far! LOL! But obviously, I want to live a moral life for much better reasons than to stay out of jail.:-)
Also, I'm sure you would agree with me that even if I took the approach that said something to the effect of, "there is no absolute right and wrong. All Morality is relative. I can do whatever I want" (rest assured that I don't take this approach) there is something called the law and consequences of breaking the law including prison time and possible execution, that are in place to prevent people from doing whatever they want.
Interesting illustration using air. But aren't you leaving something out, though? Don't you mean to say it is specifically the Christian God who is responsible for the air I breathe and everything else you said he is responsible for? If so, that's a belief by faith. The Muslim could say it is allah who is responsible for that. The mormons, zoroastrians and hindus could say the same thing about their god(s). Again, These kinds of beliefs are beliefs by faith, and they can't be proven or disproven.
I think what it comes down to is this. if I believed that the Bible is absolutely without error and completely god-breathed, I would believe exactly like you and we wouldn't be having this discussion. But the fact is I don't believe the Bible is a divine book without error. I've read plenty of material from both sides of the debate, and I have several doubts about the Bible and its 100% reliability. Until I see the Bible as you do, and I can't see that happening, we're obviously not going to see eye to eye on many things. All that being said, please know that I have considered and will strongly consider what you have said.
U know what Mike, i would have really appreciated it if u hadn't commented on this post.
U sicken and disgust me! How u can take what is happening to a boy and then quickly blame shift is sickening!
How dare u compare what muslim do to their boys w/ Christians.......remember Catholics are NOT CHRISTIANS! And u know that in ur heart.
Even if a Christian was to do that, u know very well that Jesus condemns that! U know very well what Jesus said abt someone who leads or torchers children.......It is better for him that a mill was tied around his neck and him drowned!
Instead of condemning it u blame shift, shame on you, shame, shame, shame! Mike just think abt what islam has done to u, just think. It has completely destroyed u like it does w/ millions who follow it, just sickening!
May the one true God Jesus Christ forgive ur sins before it drags u to hell where 100 trillion years will seem like a day hasn't gone by!
Again, Catholics are not Christians! just because someone says they are Christians doesn't make them so......Jesus said u will know a tree by it's fruit.
Yes, Muslims, Hindus, et al., can make the same claim you once made about being able to provide the preconditions for morality. Nevertheless, I don't believe they can pull it off, and I have yet to meet the Muslim, the Hindu, or anyone else who can provide a defeater for what I have argued against you. In any event, even if they could do as you say, that doesn't help you any, so it looks more than a little bit desperate for you to fall back on this.
As for your attempt to dismiss what I have said as some kind of fideism, if casting my argument that way helps you sleep better at night, then have at it. Tell yourself whatever it takes.
The fact is, my remarks were not motivated by an attempt to convert you, so if you misunderstand them, it is no skin off my back. By your own admission you are an apostate. As such, I have no expectation that I can do anything to convert you. If you can be believed about once knowing what Christianity really teaches, and that you once professed to believe in Christ, were baptized, and numbered yourself among God's people, then it may be that you have seared your own conscience and are beyond recovery.
"4It is impossible for those who have once been enlightened, who have tasted the heavenly gift, who have shared in the Holy Spirit, 5who have tasted the goodness of the word of God and the powers of the coming age, 6if they fall away, to be brought back to repentance, because to their loss they are crucifying the Son of God all over again and subjecting him to public disgrace.
7Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and that produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessing of God. 8But land that produces thorns and thistles is worthless and is in danger of being cursed. In the end it will be burned." (Hebrews 6)
"26If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, 27but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God. 28Anyone who rejected the law of Moses died without mercy on the testimony of two or three witnesses. 29How much more severely do you think a man deserves to be punished who has trampled the Son of God under foot, who has treated as an unholy thing the blood of the covenant that sanctified him, and who has insulted the Spirit of grace? 30For we know him who said, "It is mine to avenge; I will repay," and again, "The Lord will judge his people." 31It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God." (Hebrews 10)
Tizita, you misunderstand my post. Of course, the man in the video is responsible for his actions and I hope he is prosecuted. The point of my original post was to draw attention that it is not only the muslim community that has a problem. I don't see how you could possibly could have interpreted my original post as saying that the perpetrator is not responsible for the crime baffles me.
Anthony, I have to go to work. I should be able to respond later, though.
In my humble view I think there are some Catholics who are real Christians(they have a personal relationhip with Jesus) but unfortunately it is true that in general the 1 billion plus Catholics,when they say "I am Christian"only mean "I was baptized as a baby."
I know what I am talking about because I was there,all my friends,everybody in my city,if somebody had asked me if I was a Christian I would have said "Yes" and we always just meant that we remembered being baptized and that ritual had made us Christian,a technically.But I (like my friends and the others)almost NEVER talked about God,read the Bible,knew the mere basics(and did NOT give it any importance at all,it was like knowing the basics of Hinduism).
But I remembered being impressed by FRANCIS of ASSISI,and to a lesser extent by saint DON BOSCO(very famous in Italy,amazing man),Catherine of Siena(fascinating woman who died at only 33).Their love for Jesus(even though they had doctrinal ideas that we disagree with) was so great I am sure that their wrong ideas were just due to being born in such a place at such a time and that God saw their hearts and they were saved.By the way did you know that the CRECHE or NATIVITY set up a Christmas was invented by Francis of Assisi around 1220?
"yes, Muslims, Hindus, et al., can make the same claim you once made about being able to provide the preconditions for morality. Nevertheless, I don't believe they can pull it off, and I have yet to meet the Muslim, the Hindu, or anyone else who can provide a defeater for what I have argued against you. In any event, even if they could do as you say, that doesn't help you any, so it looks more than a little bit desperate for you to fall back on this."
I'm not trying to make an argument out of desperation nor am I trying to "defeat" you. I was just making sure I understand what you are saying. Why do you interpret everything as having to be a debate/argument?
"As for your attempt to dismiss what I have said as some kind of fideism, if casting my argument that way helps you sleep better at night, then have at it. Tell yourself whatever it takes. "
No, I'm not trying to dismiss it as fideism, as I don't think people of faith, no matter what faith that is, are stupid. I'm just stating that your many of your conclusions are based on faith and adherence to a certain worldview. This isn't necessarily a bad thing. Certainly the Bible doesn't talk negatively about accepting things by faith and not by sight (2nd Corinthians 5, Romans 8, Hebrews 11) By the way, I think atheists are people of faith, just as much as Christians.
"The fact is, my remarks were not motivated by an attempt to convert you, so if you misunderstand them, it is no skin off my back. By your own admission you are an apostate. As such, I have no expectation that I can do anything to convert you. If you can be believed about once knowing what Christianity really teaches, and that you once professed to believe in Christ, were baptized, and numbered yourself among God's people, then it may be that you have seared your own conscience and are beyond recovery."
That you are trying to convert me is obvious and you say some thought-provoking things. But at this time, due to my own personal study and reading and personal experiences, I cannot embrace the Bible as the 100% inerrant word of God and I can no longer embrace evangelical/fundamentalist Christianity.
I'm very familiar with that verse in Hebrews. It seems that there are tons of different interpretations of it, depending on the denomination.
By the way, just out of curiosity, do you happen to be a Calvinist?
I slept OK. Thanks for your concern. :-)
Mike, just curious..
In what way do you mean inerrant?
1 - That there's no error in copying all throughout history?
2 - That there's no contradictions within the current bible in the English translation?
3 - That there's only one 'version' of the bible?
4 - Others, please explain.
I rather you answer 4.. Haha.
Oops! My mistake, Anthony. I misread your post. You said your post was NOT motivated by trying to convert me. It was really early in the morning when I read your post, so I wasn't fully awake. :-)
Still, you do seem pretty evangelistic, which isn't a bad thing. After all, I'm on a Christian apologetics website and you're only obeying Matthew 28, right?
Zack, by inerrant, I mean the idea that everything in the Bible is correct and actually happened. In addition to that, I guess it is also the idea that all moral guidelines in the Bible are completely perfect and are how we should live our lives today. I'm sure there's more to the definition of biblical inerrancy but that's all I can think of now. If there's an official definition of Biblical inerrancy, please share it, as I'd be interested in reading it.
Mike said: "I'm not trying to make an argument out of desperation nor am I trying to "defeat" you. I was just making sure I understand what you are saying. Why do you interpret everything as having to be a debate/argument?
First, the desperation charge stems from the fact that you are neither a Muslim nor a Hindu nor an adherent of any of the other religions you listed, so appealing to the supposed ability of some other religion to do the trick your philosophy can't is what I was referring to as desparate. It would be like if you told someone to put up their dukes, but after you got clocked a few times, you then said, "Well, I know a guy down the block whose older brother's best friend's cousin can hold his own with you."
Second, the word "defeater" does not mean what you understood it to mean. It is a philosophical term and refers to a belief that contradicts another belief, requiring the person to abandon his previously held but now contradicted belief unless he has a "defeater-defeater".
Mike said: "No, I'm not trying to dismiss it as fideism, as I don't think people of faith, no matter what faith that is, are stupid. I'm just stating that your [sic] many of your conclusions are based on faith and adherence to a certain worldview. This isn't necessarily a bad thing. Certainly the Bible doesn't talk negatively about accepting things by faith and not by sight (2nd Corinthians 5, Romans 8, Hebrews 11) By the way, I think atheists are people of faith, just as much as Christians."
I certainly do reason in terms of the Christian worldview, but what I have been pointing out is that you are relying upon that worldview as well when you try to reason about morality (and everything else for that matter). You have been trying to argue that there is no air, but all your huffing and puffing is only possible because of what you deny. Morality depends upon God even as breathing depends upon air. God is the precondition of morality (as well as logic, mathematics, language, science, etc.), and that means you necessarily presuppose and depend upon God in everything you do, even when you try to argue against Him or apart from Him. You wish you were autonomous, but I have shown that your attempt at autonomy makes it impossible for you to account for something as simple as condemning pedophilia, which you agree is "always wrong". Hence, the reason Scripture calls you a fool.
Mike said: "That you are trying to convert me is obvious and you say some thought-provoking things. But at this time, due to my own personal study and reading and personal experiences, I cannot embrace the Bible as the 100% inerrant word of God and I can no longer embrace evangelical/fundamentalist Christianity."
That is a non-sequitur. There is more than one possible reason a person can respond to or refute another person other than seeking their conversion.
Mike said: "I'm very familiar with that verse in Hebrews. It seems that there are tons of different interpretations of it, depending on the denomination."
Great. Then all you have to do to refute my interpretation of the texts I supplied is draw upon your vast knowledge of how Christians have understood them differently, show me the supporting exegesis, and I will change my mind. Until then, I will maintain that the plain teaching of those texts is that it is impossible for you to be brought back to repentance (provided you meet all the conditions of an apostate listed in the texts I cited).
Mike said: "I slept OK. Thanks for your concern. :-)"
I am sure you did sleep OK; that goes with having a seared conscience. :p
Mike "I mean the idea that everything in the Bible is correct and actually happened."
That sounds more like historical authenticity, rather than inerrancy..
I came across this site recently... might help regarding biblical archaeology..
There are plenty of evidence to show that the biblical account of history is accurate or at least true; e.g. locations, names, etc. Both OT and NT accounts.
Mike "I guess it is also the idea that all moral guidelines in the Bible are completely perfect and are how we should live our lives today."
And this sounds to me more like a question of whether the Christian God is the true god or not, because even you would agree that moral absolutes come from the God of this universe (whoever or whatever He/She/It is).
So, the matter of whether the bible's moral guidelines are 'completely perfect (etc)' depends on whether the God of the Bible is indeed the true God.
And I submit to you that He is indeed; e.g. fulfilled prophecies, undeniable mentions about science of nature/universe that were only discovered within the last few centuries (e.g. springs in the deep, paths in the sea), and others.
I know 'inerrant' can't mean that the bible will be copied all throughout time without 1 single error... since even now we have all sorts of bible translations and distortions, let alone thousands of years ago (e.g. copyist errors due to human limitations).
So that means being 'inerrant' has nothing to do with the actual physical nature of the bible. (Even Muslims will have to admit that their Quran is not inerrant in this sense as well)
My understanding of 'inerrancy of the scriptures' refers to the doctrines that it holds and teaches (the spiritual nature of the Scripture). Is it reliable as a mean that God used to communicate with us lowly humans; not only about how we should live, but also to tell us about who/what God is and what He's done for us?
This I submit to you, Mike, is where the bible will prove to be inerrant for the bible (the OT AND the NT) we have now teaches us the exact same doctrines that was taught to the early Christians/Jews, despite thousands of years since the time the 5 Book of the Torah were first written.
The doctrine of salvation through the sacrifice of Jesus Christ should prove inerrant, as it is taught throughout the generations, from the Jews (through their sacrificial practices to cover their sins) to the Christians (salvation through grace by faith in Jesus Christ).
Anthony, I guess I could continue this conversation, but your mocking and personal attacks make it very hard to continue to have a discussion with you. In the past, I've had discussions with Christians on here and with the exception of a few, they have been respectful and kind, despite our disagreements. Perhaps you think your approach brings glory to God, but I can't continue to engage in a discussion with someone who acts as antagonistic as you.
If my initial comment on this thread was offensive to you and was the initial inspiration for the tone of your posts, I'm truly sorry. I was just trying to make the point that sexual abuse happens unfortunately all over, and not just in the islamic community.
If it makes you feel better to interpret this note as your victory, go ahead, but I don't want to put myself in a situation where I repsond to you in an unhealthy manner, so I'm going to step away. If you want to discuss this topic in a much more civil tone on here, let me know, or you can email me.
Since I have trampled his name underfoot and treated it as an unholy thing, it appears Mike wants the other half of his heart necklace back and no longer wants to be BFF's. It is a terrible thing to fall into the hands of an angry sinner.
Even though mike acts like he thinks he’s a god, and it appears that he yearns to look in the mirror and find a subject that has the authority and wisdom to direct the lives of others, nonetheless, he is a fault-filled man with obvious intellectual frailties. mike issues his groundless moral laws which demand reverence for his (mike’s) name all the while his stature of being lacks the attributes necessary to justify such commandments
Another Mike enters the fray. I think I like this one.
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