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JohnKrocker
10-06-01, 08:36 PM
The question that I ask is this: Can we possibly know everything about God just from the bible?

The obvious answer is that no, we cannot possibly hope to comprehend a being that could create the universe and all that is in it.

However, the ramifications of this answer are just as obvious. If we cannot know all of God, how can we say that God could not have revealed himself in many ways to different cultures throughout history? How can we say that the word "truth" does not have multiple meanings to such a being?

Look forward to your discussion.

JK

Kathleen
10-06-01, 11:25 PM
Ooohh..I think I'll just sit back an ENJOY this one!!

God Bless 5Solas!

Andrew
10-08-01, 03:42 AM
how can we say that God could not have revealed himself in many ways to different cultures throughout history?
--------
Yes not everything abt God is contained in the Bible. Even if it were, our finite human minds wld not be able to understand everything.

BUT my immediate answer wld be that God has given us more than enough info (in the Bible) and power (Holy Spirit/faith) to know who He is, where He can be found and that He is the only way.

God bless
:D

jhamrick
10-08-01, 09:43 AM
how can we say that God could not have revealed himself in many ways to different cultures throughout history?


If we believe that God's revelation to us is the Bible then he himself said that Jesus is the only way.

Fledge
10-08-01, 09:49 AM
We can not know everything about God. As was mentioned previously, our finite minds cannot FULLY comprehend and understand an INFINITE God.

However, He has given us plenty of information to get us started. He has given us more than enough to keep us occupied for a lifetime.

As we grow in our faith and in our walk with Him, we learn and experience more and more. And when we join Him in eternity, we will fully know Him. Like any relationship, it is a process. The more we spend time with Him, the more we interact and relate to Him, the more we know.

questian
10-08-01, 12:19 PM
There is more than enough BAD information that has kept people occupied for GENERATIONS. Does this sound like the knowledge of a perfect, intelligent being?


"And these are they which ye shall have in abomination among the fowls; they shall not be eaten, they are an abomination: the eagle, and the ossifrage, and the ospray, And the vulture . . . And the stork, the heron after her kind, and the lapwing, and the bat." (Leviticus 11:13-19)

Bats are mammals, not birds.

"As he thinketh in his heart, so is he." (Proverbs 23:7)
"And Jesus, perceiving the thought of their heart, took a child, and set him by him." (Luke 9:47)
"Yea, my reins shall rejoice, when thy lips speak right things. Let not my heart envy sinners." (Proverbs 23:16-17)
"I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways." (Jeremiah 17:10)
"All the churches will know that I am he which searcheth the reins and hearts." (Revelation 2:23)

Thinking takes place in the brain, not the heart.
In biblical times, the kidneys ("reins") were the seat of the emotions. "Reins" was used roughly then as "heart" is sometimes used today.

"And, behold, one came and said unto him, Good master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? . . . Jesus said unto him, If thou wilt be perfect, go and sell that thou hast, and give to the poor; and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come and follow me." (Matthew 19:16-21)

Jesus says only the destitute will have eternal life.

"Think not that I am come to send peace on earth: I came not to send peace, but a sword." (Matthew 10:34)
"Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid." (John 14:27)

Evidently, Jesus can't decide whether he's a peacemaker or a war monger.

Just because someone says they are God does not make them so.
A king is not a ruler when he is overthrown.
Superman is not the strongest man on the planet while holding Kryptonite.
The bible is not sufficient in it's knowledge if God is infinite.

jhamrick
10-08-01, 12:45 PM
Bats are mammals, not birds.

Is this in any way a big deal? Do you think that if it was written that a bat was a mammal that the readers at that time would have understood?

Thinking takes place in the brain, not the heart.
In biblical times, the kidneys ("reins") were the seat of the emotions. "Reins" was used roughly then as "heart" is sometimes used today.

Once again, very petty. If this kind of stuff is tripping you up, it is obvious that you want to be tripped up.

Jesus says only the destitute will have eternal life.

No he doesn't. He is talking to a specific guy in a specific situation
about that guy's particular hangup. He does later say that it will be hard for the rich to be saved though.

questian
10-08-01, 01:05 PM
JH,
It sounds like you are acknowledging that the bible is not infallible and was written for a specific audience at a specific time in history. Those who claim the bible as relevant to current issues or sufficient to understanding the mind of God don't know what to do with small stuff like this and blow it off. Needless to say, there are much bigger things that have "tripped me up".

Questian

jhamrick
10-08-01, 01:12 PM
The truths of the Bible are infallible.

questian
10-08-01, 01:27 PM
So are the truths of every other religion/philosophy of the world.
Are the falsehoods of the bible also infallible? Does science need to revise it's data concerning bats and hearts to align with what nomadic people wrote thousands of years ago who had no knowledge of modern biology?

jhamrick
10-08-01, 01:44 PM
So are the truths of every other religion/philosophy of the world.

No they aren't. I can go further if you'd like, but I think you can think that one through.

If the point declared in these passages had anything to do with bats or what organ does the thinking, then yes, scientists should change their thinking on these two things. However, that was not the point being made. The speakers were speaking to certain people on their level in these particular passages, but that still doesn't mean that there isn't truth inherant for us today.
Much of the Bible is universally adaptable.

You can take apart any words if you are nit-picky enough and make them seem untrue or irrelevant.

questian
10-08-01, 02:03 PM
Much of the Bible is universally adaptable.

Much does not equal all. Adaptability means able to change to suit the environment. What you are saying in effect is that the bible has EVOLVED!:eek:

jhamrick
10-08-01, 02:11 PM
Nice twisting of words, and a nice argument tactic. But, I didn't say, nor did I mean that.

Let's change the word adaptable(not what I meant) to applicable(what Imeant to say).

Some of the Bible was not meant to be universally applicable, some was written to very specific audience.

questian
10-08-01, 02:18 PM
Again, some does not equal all, which means that not all of the bible is universally applicable.

Would you like to try again?:)

jhamrick
10-08-01, 02:31 PM
Read the last sentence of my last post. When I say that all of the Bible was meant to be universally applicable, then you may argue with me over it.

Andrew
10-09-01, 12:09 AM
questian,

You are not here to seek God or come to know him. Your main aim seems to be just to debate, argue and find fault.

You probably have already heard the Jesus Christ is the Son of God and that sinners like you need to repent and receive his free gift of forgiveness of sins and righteousness. No one can be reconciled to God except thru his Son Jesus Christ, exept thru the finished work on calvary, except thru the blood of Christ.

You've prob heard it all. Yet if you continue to reject this till the day you die, you will surely perish in hell. There is no more scarifice if u still reject.

I'm not impressed by your witty comments and smart talk or your theology. you can never find God that way. I wld advise you to humble yourself and repent for your own sake.

Those who have tried to reach you and convince you have prob tried hard. And are thus innocent of your blood. I thank God for their patience. But there will come a time when they will shake the dust of their feet and move on. Then you'll be on your own, unless God in his grace sends someone else.

The more you reject the more your heart hardens. Humble and hear. Dont harden your heart any further.

questian
10-09-01, 08:16 AM
Andrew,
You are correct, I am not here to seek God per se, rather demand proof of his existence. I am here to debate as this is a SKEPTICS DEBATE board. I am not here to be drawn into emotional arguments, but I do find fault with the rationale people use to justify belief in God. I am an EX-Christian so I am very familiar with all the pleas and emotional hooks that are used to persuade non-believers. The position I have taken is not in defiance of truth, my aim is the complete revealing of truth in a reasonable and logical debate of facts and evidence. When there is no evidence to be found, I naturally reject appeals to faith and eternal condemnation. If you are offended by what is said here, please feel free to leave, but if you stay your ego will certainly take a beating. I leave no stone unturned and no sacred cows saved from slaughter. Is your faith and your God up to the challenge?

Questian

Twonky
10-09-01, 09:14 AM
Questian,

So, basically, you want proof when you know the kind of proof you want is no where to be found?

You want God to come down and speak to you verbally, I wanted that too. You want him to make everything clear to you, I wanted that too.

You're expecting God (or in your case, a fictional being!) to answer to you instead of you answering to him.

It's not gonna happen. So who is wasting their time here?

questian
10-09-01, 09:26 AM
Twonky,
What happened that made you stop waiting for God to reveal himself to you? You say he did nothing so did you find him? What did you find?

Twonky
10-09-01, 09:44 AM
Originally posted by questian
What happened that made you stop waiting for God to reveal himself to you?

I realized he had been revealing himself all along, I just refused to open my eyes and see it.


You say he did nothing so did you find him?

I never said he did nothing.


What did you find?

A whole lot of peace.

jhamrick
10-09-01, 09:50 AM
That's true Twonky, God has given us more than enough proof of his existance. Besides, if he is the creator of the universe, why does he have to prove anything to us.

questian, you seem to have a lot of anger and hostility, has something happened to you in the past?

questian
10-09-01, 09:56 AM
Twonky,
So what does God look like?

Twonky
10-09-01, 09:59 AM
Originally posted by questian
So what does God look like?

How would I know that?

questian
10-09-01, 10:03 AM
Twonky,
You said God had been revealing himself to you all along. So what did you see other than birds and trees?

jhamrick
10-09-01, 10:05 AM
He's really bright.

Twonky
10-09-01, 10:26 AM
Originally posted by questian
Twonky,
You said God had been revealing himself to you all along. So what did you see other than birds and trees?

So the only way to have something revealed to you is by seeing it?

questian
10-09-01, 10:39 AM
JH,


He's really bright.

Not necessarily.

He made darkness his covering, his canopy around him-- the dark rain clouds of the sky. (Psalm 18:11)

Then spake Solomon, The LORD said that he would dwell in the thick darkness. (1 Kings 8:12)

He has made me dwell in darkness like those long dead. (Lamentations 3:6)


Nitzsche was right.

jhamrick
10-09-01, 10:39 AM
He's really bright.


I just realized that probably looked like a sarcastic slant towards questian.

It was in answer to the question, What does GOd look like?

Answer: He is really bright.

jhamrick
10-09-01, 10:41 AM
Any time in the Bible where someone reports actually seeing God, there is a very bright light. The verses you posted were somewhat metaphorical, keep reading though, and I think you'll see what I mean.

questian
10-09-01, 10:42 AM
Twonky,

There are five senses we know of. Whatever exists in the universe comes to us through them. If you can't see, hear, smell, taste, or touch it, you don't know it's there. All else is an illusion.

questian
10-09-01, 10:44 AM
JH,
Why isn't seeing a bright light also considered metaphorical?

jhamrick
10-09-01, 10:50 AM
because the scriptures you named are not accounts of people actually seeing God. When people actually saw him, mostly in the old testament, then in Acts with Paul, they reported seeing a bright light.

Keep reading, you'll see what I'm talking about.

universe
10-09-01, 10:52 AM
Just because Questian or Smugg or even I have not found the kind of comprehensible proof that we are looking for does not mean that it is not out there. You all claim to trust in God and have great faith in Him; put some of that faith in His ability to reveal Himself to each person in the way that person can accept it.

This is much more than a mere debate to me. I am having the same questions and conflicts that Q and S are, I just have not thrown God out. And I cannot even give you a good rational reason why I have not done that yet. So instead of bickering with each other, help me find the answers I need. I have at least a tiny grain of faith, but I need more to get me through. The anger and defensiveness I hear is not coming from our resident skeptics, they are quite good at remaining calm most of the time, it is coming from us when they don't accept our answers.

Sorry to get emotional, but this is important to me. And maybe it is important to others who visit this board. "Just the facts, ma'am."

jhamrick
10-09-01, 10:59 AM
I would assume that we all if we are honest have questions and doubts, we can all work through them together.


As far as prior conversation on this board,...well it is a debate board. Smugg and Questian have both stated that they are not neccessarrilly looking for answers, therfore, if noone were here to debate with them they would have no reason to be here.

I do hope that my words haven't seemed angry or rude, they weren't meant in that way. It is very hard to express emotion through written text.

universe
10-09-01, 11:29 AM
On the second page, people were questioning why someone who is a skeptic is here at all, absolving themselves of Q and S's blood, asking who was wasting their time, and suggesting that one debaters issues stem from their past. This is not debating the issues, it is getting personal. Thus the reason for my last post and for the quote I posted, "Just the facts, Ma'am."

JH, this isn't an emotion board, it is a debate board, unless we are debating emotions now. ;) :) ;) :) ;)

questian
10-09-01, 11:47 AM
If the Vulcans in Star Trek have anything to teach us, it's that emotions need not be eliminated, but must be mastered, especially when it comes to decision making. They are a poor judge of reality and dangerous in times of crisis. The best Christians I've met are the ones who empathize for those in need and don't take their religion too seriously.

Universe,
I'm trying to get everyone to look past all the feel-good stuff they think God is about and take a critical look at why they believe a certain way. Why can't God submit to a logical test as well as an emotional faith test? If God is infinite, his being should permeate not only the sacred but the profane as well, don't you agree?

JH,
Tell me what YOU see. Is yours a bright light?

Twonky
10-09-01, 11:57 AM
Originally posted by questian
There are five senses we know of. Whatever exists in the universe comes to us through them. If you can't see, hear, smell, taste, or touch it, you don't know it's there. All else is an illusion.

Do you love anyone? How do you know people love you? Is it because what your 5 senses tell you about them? If so, what needs to happen for you to feel love from someone?

You're limiting yourself when you judge all around you by what you can see, hear, smell, taste or touch. I love my children with all my heart, that is definately NOT an illusion and I definately feel love from them as well.

Twonky
10-09-01, 12:01 PM
Originally posted by questian
Why can't God submit to a logical test as well as an emotional faith test?

I'm sure he can. What kind of test did you have in mind?

jhamrick
10-09-01, 12:30 PM
Universe said:
On the second page, people were questioning why someone who is a skeptic is here at all, absolving themselves of Q and S's blood, asking who was wasting their time, and suggesting that one debaters issues stem from their past. This is not debating the issues, it is getting personal. Thus the reason for my last post and for the quote I posted, "Just the facts, Ma'am."


woops. My adolescent egocentrism was coming back to haunt me, I thought you were talking about me. I looked back and you were right, some people had made some comments To Q and S that shouldn't have been said. I enjoy their company here on the board.


Questian asked:
JH,
Tell me what YOU see. Is yours a bright light?

Nah, I saw my dad stop drinking after 30 years of hardcore addiction. He had been in and out of jail, lost everything. He did AA, detox, everything he could, but he couldn't quit. One day he went to church and came back saying God had healed him. I thought he was full of crap, as I had saw him quit 1000 times, and didn't believe in God anyway. Well, 10 years later, and he hasn't touched a drop. I realized at that point that something of power was out there. Thus, my search began.

questian
10-09-01, 01:19 PM
Twonky,
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but what you consider love is only your interpretation of composite actions and observed behavior. Love is an abstract concept and not one that can be quantified. I cannot hold a love-detector device between you and your children and measure the love waves traveling back and forth or tell you what "love" looks or feels like. If you give one child a gift and another a beating, the child receiving the gift will interpret your action as love while the other will interpret your action as something other than love. It is all in the perception of the individual. This is the kind of logical test I am talking about.

JH,
Not to minimize your situation, but people recover from addiction all the time without any sort of religious experience. Did he engage in any sort of treatment program in the meantime that might also be a factor in his turnaround or did he quit cold-turkey one day? This may be a substance abuse success story, but this is no picture of God you are presenting. Also take into account the traumatic emotional life yours has been and consider whether you would be a Muslim today if he had recovered in a mosque instead of a church.

jhamrick
10-09-01, 01:36 PM
No recovery program at the time. As said before, he was in AA and all for years before this, but had given up on all that years prior to his experience. Cold-turkey. That is from drinking a fifth of vodka EVERY day up until I was sixteen to never touching it again in one day. Pretty impressive.

The deal was though, I didn't go to church immediately. I think it kind of scared me that I had lived my life totally for myself and then had to face that there was something larger. But I did begin searching. I went through all the major religions, and a lot of the side ones. Rastafari was actually my choice for a couple of years. The more I searched, though, the more I realized that Christianity was the real deal and there was nothing else like it. On top of that, I found out that it wasn't even a religion, which I was happy about because I had so many hang-ups with organized religion.

You can say that is not a picture of God if you like, but you asked what I saw, and I told you. Keep your eyes open. God is revealling himself everywhere but too often we have our eyes closed.

Twonky
10-09-01, 01:40 PM
Originally posted by questian
Twonky,
I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but what you consider love is only your interpretation of composite actions and observed behavior.

No bad news here. I understand the logical assessment of love. Would you care to answer the questions though?


I cannot hold a love-detector device between you and your children and measure the love waves traveling back and forth or tell you what "love" looks or feels like. If you give one child a gift and another a beating, the child receiving the gift will interpret your action as love while the other will interpret your action as something other than love. It is all in the perception of the individual. This is the kind of logical test I am talking about.

Yes very logical. So are you saying that by receiving a gift you are loved and by getting punished you aren't loved?

Do you feel that your parents didn't love you when you were being punished?

questian
10-09-01, 02:43 PM
Twonky,
You seem really stuck on my childhood, my past, or anything else to explain why I think this way. Mine was a normal, church-going, small-town family with nothing in the way of abuse or disfunction. I was active in the church up until last year when I really started investigating all that Christianity claims to be and have rejected most of what I was indoctrinated with.

What I consider "love" is as I stated, an interpretation of observed behavior. If my wife kisses me, I feel love. If she were to kiss another man, I would most likely feel jealousy, betrayal or anger. Her behavior does not change, only how I interpret it. The same thing applies with other abstract concepts that cannot be directly observed or measured; such is God.

jhamrick
10-09-01, 02:52 PM
Maybe you lost me here, but you talked about her kissing you, and then kissing another man and called that the same behavior?

Nevermind, I don't even get the point of the argument taking place right now.

Twonky
10-09-01, 03:30 PM
Originally posted by questian
Twonky,
You seem really stuck on my childhood, my past, or anything else to explain why I think this way.

I was simply using the parent/child relationship as an example, I wasn't intending to address YOUR specific situation.

I definately don't subscribe to the 'avoid the question by focusing on the past' tactic, so if it looks like that, I apologize.

JesusFreak2K1
10-09-01, 05:23 PM
Are we really debating love? Love is the intangible evidence of anothers action. But love begins in the heart. I believe it to be a spiritual experience based on interpretation. You can't hold a tri-corder up to a person's face and measure it. I have thought I was loved by a man who was not only cheating on me, but telling her he loved her and wanted to get rid of me, but when I was with him, he told me and showed me how much he "loved" me!! No one can ever really know the truth in a person's heart. The divorce rate can attest to that!! Even stalkers can show and express love!

But God is knowable......to a certain degree. In as much as He is willing to be revealed. No different than any one of us. I have more than one side to my personality.....in my professional life, I act, speak and think in a professional manner. I am still me, but I am different with close friends and family. While in the company of close friends and family, I may be more relaxed. I'm not so worried if there is spinach in my teeth, or if my hair is not exactly perfect, I may not even wear make-up!

God revealed himself to me in His own time. I asked Him to show me how a God (the father) is different from the father I knew. The father I knew was weak, a liar, a child exploiter and finally....non-existing. He didn't care about me or my siblings. But God showed me that things with Him were different. I have to admit, I had a hard time calling God,Father, after all...the father I had was scary and I hated him! He didn't reveal himself to me all in one day, and I'm still learning about the nature of God. He is knowable, you just have to search him out!

I have since re-established a new relationship with my father, based on forgiveness. He is no longer the man I knew as a child. Forgiving him was the literal key to my sanity. God helped me to do that. Jesus Christ helped me to do that. God even used my husband to help me do that.

Keep searching gentlemen....it's worth the journey!!!!!!!

smugg
10-09-01, 08:00 PM
Originally posted by JesusFreak2K1
Are we really debating love? Love is the intangible evidence of anothers action. But love begins in the heart.

The heart is a hollow, pumplike organ of blood circulation, composed mainly of rhythmically contractile smooth muscle, located in the chest between the lungs and slightly to the left and consisting of four chambers: a right atrium that receives blood returning from the body via the superior and inferior vena cavae, a right ventricle that pumps the blood through the pulmonary artery to the lungs for oxygenation, a left atrium that receives the oxygenated blood via the pulmonary veins and passes it through the mitral valve, and a left ventricle that pumps the oxygenated blood, via the aorta, throughout the body.

Let's be clear here: love starts in the brain.

Love is a much debated concept: Schopenhauer felt that romantic love was just two people recognizing in each other the ability to produce healthy offspring. At the very least, love might just be an attempt by people to rationalize their desire to keep a particular person in their life because of their desirable qualities.

There are other types of love, of course: we say we love our children, but many species of animal exhibit protectiveness of their offspring and are they truly expressing love?

Andrew
10-09-01, 10:18 PM
Ex-Christian?

questian, you were never born again to begin with. And yes, i will leave this thread becos it's just a waste of time. You have already made it clear that you are not here to seek God but just to nit-pick the Bible and give smart-alex rebuttals and circular reasoning. I can tolerate skeptics that want to truly seek the truth but you are just not one of those. The spirit of the anti-Christ speaks thru you.

Anyway, Paul never bothered to debate with the thorn in his flesh.

smugg
10-09-01, 10:33 PM
Originally posted by Andrew
Ex-Christian?

questian, you were never born again to begin with.

In other words, not a real Christian.


And yes, i will leave this thread becos it's just a waste of time. You have already made it clear that you are not here to seek God but just to nit-pick the Bible and give smart-alex rebuttals and circular reasoning. I can tolerate skeptics that want to truly seek the truth but you are just not one of those.

Apparently, you're not a real skeptic, either. Brother Andrew has high standards, I think.


The spirit of the anti-Christ speaks thru you.

Sure, but is it a real anti-Christ?


Anyway, Paul never bothered to debate with the thorn in his flesh.

universe
10-09-01, 10:43 PM
Point. Game. Match. To the skeptics.
ROTFL :D ;) :) :D

JesusFreak2K1
10-10-01, 04:30 AM
Smugg- I feel sorry for you. Love is all in your head. You seem to need tangible proof for everything. How sad!
When you meet Jesus in heaven and you will, you will be humbled. You will realize in an instant how trivial you have been. It will be like an arrow piercing through your heart, and it will be too late.
Let me ask you this.......If you were planning on taking a trip to a foreign country, would you plan ahead? Would you study the culture? Learn about the local laws?
I wish I could plea with you to search with all your heart AND your mind. It is my prayer for you that God will reveal Himself to you, in a way that will be unmistakeable.
He DOES love you. Jesus died for you. Even if you were the only one here. I love you too. I just want to help, but I don't know how. Any way....that's my 2 cents.

Brandan
10-10-01, 06:21 AM
Andrew, why get upset because a skeptic doesn't see things your way. I'm convinced the only way people will come to know and understand God is to see Him in our lives, not in our words.

As you all know, I don't spend much time on the skeptic debate board. I don't think it's a waste of time, it's just that it's not at the top of my priorities...

Smugg and questian have done nothing wrong here, and I think it is wrong to say they AREN'T seeking. We don't know what is going on in a man's heart, irregardless of the words that might be formed through their keyboard.

Smugg, questian, and all you other lurker skeptics, I urge you to stick around, read what we have to say, and be patient with Christians who are judgemental and frustrated with you. A good chunk of the time, people who represent Christianity don't understand enough of their faith to truly represent it. I have met Atheists who understood the flow and the teachings of the Bible much better than those who profess to be born again.

There are different theologies within the realm of Christianity. I think you might learn a lot about the differences in Christian philosophy if you stick around...

Also, if you ever have any questions, or comments, feel free to contact me privately or publicly, and I'll be happy to address your concerns.

Thanks for sticking around guys, your perspective on life and it's events is much appreciated.

Brandan

questian
10-10-01, 07:38 AM
"THE hymn had engaged my attention; when it was over I had time to take stock of the congregation. They were chiefly farmers- fat, very well-to-do folk, who had come some of them with their wives and children from outlying farms two and three miles away; haters of popery and of anything which anyone might choose to say was popish; good, sensible fellows who detested theory of any kind, whose ideal was the maintenance of the status quo with perhaps a loving reminiscence of old war times, and a sense of wrong that the weather was not more completely under their control, who desired higher prices and cheaper wages, but otherwise were most contented when things were changing least; tolerators, if not lovers, of all that was familiar, haters of all that was unfamiliar; they would have been equally horrified at hearing the Christian religion doubted, and at seeing it practised."

- Samuel Butler, Way of All Flesh