A Message To Religious People

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Joshua Thanopoulos's picture
1. "impossible to tell you

1. "impossible to tell you the influence $$ within the bible" - Can you at least give me a couple. Or just general themes or ideas
2. "They can a little bit, but they support atheism at least 10 to 1, probably more like 100 to 1 or 1000 to 1" - Debatable
3. Yeah typo. Thanks for the clarification. I don't deny unity, I deny population growth, but I will look again now. Again thanks for the clarification.
4. "So when a wonderful little girl dies horribly of some agonizing disease over 5 years, how do they explain that?" - Romans 3:23 "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God" Basically, if you have sinful nature by falling short of the glory of God, you deserve to suffer, as falling short is a crime and suffering is justice for that. If this go on further debate, the idea of the 'Divine Command Theory' comes into play. (I am going to get roasted because of that!)
5. "I look at books and sites that confound the bible versus evidence that supports the bible in both real world and in reasoning." - We both do the same thing, we just arrive and different conclusions.
6. I am basically saying that a lie is a lie, even when everybody believes it. A truth is truth, even if no one believes it.
7. Welcome :)

LogicFTW's picture
1. In general once you view

1. In general once you view the bible as just a book, it is pretty easy to see the agenda $$ behind it. I said "$$" originally to keep a longer thought short. More of an agenda to build up followers in a faith and keep the ones in it. More followers = more power, more tithes more soldiers for more spoils of war. You need a strong religion to convince people to go to war, which was almost always a death sentence back then.
http://www.newsweek.com/2015/01/02/thats-not-what-bible-says-294018.html
encapsulates lots of it much better than I could. It is also well known how incredibly wealthy the top religious figures are, even in this period of overall religious decline.

2. ---Evidence of your god versus evidence pointing to no god---
How to encapsulate this in a few sentences. Will have to greatly generalize which leaves me open to unsubstantiated points, but knowing that, here goes:
-Zero repeat testable evidence of your god as depicted by your particular religion's holy book.
-Evidence to the contrary of what the bible says. A short list: http://rationalwiki.org/wiki/Biblical_scientific_errors
-Evidence science got it right. The computer you are reading this on. Science points to no god.
-a few logical arguments, cosmological, ontological etc. versus the thousands of logic flaws pointed out in the bible, reasoning flaws, contradictions, etc.
I do concede I am not going to make an exhaustive list And get back to you with a conclusive list. Maybe I can find a website where someone else has made the vast list. If you want to claim victory on this point on the fact I do not substantiate my claim that is fine, doing all the heavy research/
It also seems to be all the logical reasoning arguments for your gods existence are complex and hard to understand and all the ones for no god are so simple a child could understand.
3. Yep both sides can pretty easily manipulate numbers and stats to say what they want them to say.
4. Yeah, roasted. Everything bad that happens to people happens because they have sinned? How did the 5 year old little girl sin so badly she gets to die a horrible painful lingering death? Where awful nazi concentration camp officers have lived long lives in hiding with their ill gotten goods never have awful things happen to them?
I am not current on the divine command theory.
5. We also count them differently. To me, my list is far far longer and more obvious.
6. Yep. Course we both think this should apply to the person we are arguing to, to open their eyes.

It really comes down to: I demand real world evidence that I can interact with my senses, that I can test myself in a system that sees real world results.

I think I ended up setting myself up to do all the work in this argument, how did I do that? Oh well. I suppose I could stick to sound bytes and instead, and make the theist have to do the work to defend their view.

Joshua Thanopoulos's picture
1. "More followers = more

1. "More followers = more power, more tithes more soldiers for more spoils of war." - When you war, I am going to assume Old Testament. Your first point implies that Christianity/Judaism was made up to be visually appealing. But several points. The laws in Deuteronomy, Leviticus, Exodus etc. were not meant for people outside of the Jews, but for the Jews. These laws were enforced of those who were part of it. The laws were incredibly harsh and not visually appealing. Plus you were not forced to stay. You could leave.

2. I am going to attempt to answer to arguments made by Rational Wiki:
a. Insect Anatomy. Leviticus 11:20-23. "All flying insects that walk on all fours are to be detestable to you. There are, however, some winged creatures that walk on all fours that you may eat: those that have jointed legs for hopping on the ground. Of these you may eat any kind of locust, katydid, cricket or grasshopper. But all other winged creatures that have four legs you are to detest." - The Hebrew word used for "insects' is 'sherets', which suggest 'swarming things' or 'swarmers'. Gordon J. Wenham writes that "Going on all fours is (used as) the opposite of walking uprightly: the number of legs is irrelevant". Everything that swarms is detestable because they have no clear-cut motion peculiar to their sphere of life. Birds have two wings to fly, two legs for walking, fish have scales and fins, land animals have four legs, but swarmers swarm no matter where they are. Mary Douglas in her book 'Purity and Danger' writes that "The case of the locusts is...consistent. The test of whether it is a clean and therefore edible kind i how it moves on the earth. If it crawls it is unclean. If it hops it is clean."
b. The smallest seed. This website answers the question by saying it is the smallest seed, not by size, but by value.
c. Pi. 1 Kings 7: 23-26 "And he made a molten sea [cauldron], ten cubits from the one brim to the other: it was round all about, and his height was five cubits: and a line of thirty cubits did compass it round about." There are several answers to the Pi objection. One is that the meaning of the word cubit, and how it would have been used in measuring the vessel. A cubit was the length of a man’s forearm from the elbow to the extended fingertips. The Hebrew cubit was about 45 centimetres (18 inches). It is obvious that a man’ forearm does not readily lend itself to the measurement of fractions of a forearm. In the Bible half a cubit is mentioned several times, but there is no mention of a third part of a cubit or a fourth part of a cubit, even though these fractions of ‘a third part’ and ‘a fourth part’ were used in volume and weight measurements.2 It therefore seems highly probable that any measurement of more than half a cubit would have been counted as a full cubit, and any measurement of less than half a cubit would have been rounded down to the nearest full cubit. The second is that the decimal point wasn't written back then. Three we have a greater expectation of accuracy then them.
d. Firmament. The passages that contain 'firmament' is the creation story in Genesis 1 and in Psalm. Both of which were not written to be taken literally.
e. Illumination. Although the moon omits no light of its own, it reflects light and shows light. It is lesser light. Plus it is in Genesis 1. Not literal.
f. Stars. The website answers this question itself. "However, other verses in the book of Revelation clearly use "stars" in a figurative sense (for example, see Rev. 9:1 and Rev. 12:3, 4), so it is possible that the writer did not intend to make a statement about literal celestial bodies in 8:10 either. Indeed, given the highly allegorical and symbolic nature of apocalyptic literature in general, any literal understanding of Revelation is generally ill-advised"
g. Planetary Formation. Its Genesis 1. Not literal. Again, the website answers this by stating, "The creation of the sun, moon, and stars on day four is meant to be a theological point, rather than a scientific one."
h. Rotation of Earth. Just because the bible says that the sun goes up and down, doesn't mean it is wrong. Whether something goes up or down is subjective in relation to something else. The author is just observing the sun going up and down.
i. Bat classification. Website answers this by saying that the Jews had a "rather crude system lumping together any animal with any type of wing" and that they the crude system put organisms together "by appearance and function, not by biology."

3. Punishment should fit the crime. The crime of having a sinful nature has the punishment of hell for eternity.

4. The Divine Command theory is basically what God says goes.

5. "To me, my list is far far longer and more obvious." - And to me, mine is.

I do apologise about the length.

jamiebgood1's picture
Yes, I love your quote

Yes, I love your quote because it doesn't make sense to so many. But many people are silent and afraid to be deemed crazy. And it is a brilliant way to control the masses. Its kind of amazing that it still is being used for all sorts of agendas, according to interpretation of course. Read a story about young teen brothers that were beaten so badly for hours by parents and pastors that one died and one was severely injured.Their interpretation of the Bible was deadly to their kids. Insane!
http://www.christianpost.com/news/19-y-o-killed-brother-injured-new-york...

Joshua Thanopoulos's picture
Horrible story that is. Now I

Horrible story that is. Now I am assuming that your problem is the biblical interpretation, am I correct?

Joshua Thanopoulos's picture
1. There are two options.

1. There are two options. Either (a) where Cain has incest with a sister, or (b) where Cain finds another woman. Problems with option (a) are that the bible mentions the offspring of Adam and Eve, but the bible doesn't mention that Cain had incest. The bible doesn't fade away from people doing bad stuff, but here it doesn't mention anything. Option (b) is what I believe. With (b), although it doesn't say that God created other people, it is implied.
2. I'm assuming you mean Josephus.
3. "I can prove it". Then please do so. I have never heard of the idea that the Gospels were written in the third century. 1st and 2nd century, but not third.
4."all in Greek". Well Greek was pretty much one of the, if not the, main language spoken at that time and place. Plus the Epistles were written to places were Greek was the dominant language.
P.S. The main problem that I have with the dating of the New Testament.

SBMontero's picture
1.- Genesis neither says

1.- Genesis neither says anything about option b, that's the question, but there're more options, the simplest and likely is that Genesis be a chinese tale, like the rest of the old and the new testament.
2.- You're assuming right. Have you read Jewish Antiquities?
3.4.- I'm sorry, the dating of the documents is what it's, there're no previous documents, although we know that the apocalypse introduced in what was then called the Gospel of John is older because it's adapted from a document in Aramaic that was included In the Vulgate, and of which there's also copy in ancient Hebrew, but the rest is distributed by the third century. These documents - I have exposed the image of you, but there are many more - are exposed in the British Library and its authentication isn't debatable.

P.S.
The use of greek in the Roman Empire was reduced to Greece and Eastern Europe, from Armenia to the northwest, let us not speak of those who were able to write it, for obvious reasons much less than those who would speak and write in latin with fluency, beginning with Josephus himself.

Joshua Thanopoulos's picture
1. My point is, is that the

1. My point is, is that the bible mentions offspring of Adam but doesn't mention the wife of Cain as one of them. It's implied that the wife is from another place.
2. Let's assume that the entire passage describing Jesus is made up. Josephus also mentions Jesus as the brother of James. Tacitus also mentions him, as well as Pliny the Younger and Elder, and Suetonius. I will admit to the idea that they only mentioned Jesus because that who the Christians say they worshiped.
3. "adapted from a document in Aramaic that was included In the Vulgate" - Proof. When I say proof I don't mean a 3rd century historian saying that it was "adapted", I am asking what evidence/proof points you towards that conclusion.
4. When was the use of Greek reduced?
5. I will get back to you on the historicity of the Adam and Eve story.
6. I apologise you I seem an arrogant Christian. I am genuinely trying to find evidence on both sides of the bible historicity argument.

Sky Pilot's picture
SBMontero,

SBMontero,

The fairy tale clearly says that there were other civilizations all around the Garden of Eden. These included Assyria, Arabia, Ethiopia, Persia. When Cain hit the road he went to the land of Nod on the east of Eden, had a family, and built a city. So in order to have a city there had to have been more than three people in the area.

SBMontero's picture
@Diotrephes: No, the fairy

@Diotrephes: No, the fairy tale doesn't speak about other people than Adam and Eve in paradise, the fairy tale says Adam and Eve, the only humans in paradise, after Cain and Abel born out of paradise, and again, the fairy tale doesn't speak about other people create by god and anywhere says that god created anyone else... but, If you know the verse of Genesis where something appears about, please, go ahead.

The problem of the fairy tale, especially about Genesis, is that whoever reads it should take it for granted that it happened, because how you call it, it's a fairy tale addressed to children who, of course, don't ask themselves about details like those. The problem of Cain's offspring hasn't even a response from Bible scholars and if you ask a theologian will tell you that the Bible is only inspired by god, but written by men and men are fallible Ôo)-~

It's as simple as writing on Google "the theological problem of Cain's offspring", I find 994,000 results only in Christian pages. Do you still believe that the subject is very clear, even for Christians? They don't think so.

Sky Pilot's picture
SBMontero,

SBMontero,

The fairy tale clearly states in Genesis 2:10-13 (KJV) = 10 And a river went out of Eden to water the garden; and from thence it was parted, and became into four heads.

11 The name of the first is Pison: that is it which compasseth the whole land of Havilah, where there is gold;

12 And the gold of that land is good: there is bdellium and the onyx stone.

13 And the name of the second river is Gihon: the same is it that compasseth the whole land of Ethiopia.

14 And the name of the third river is Hiddekel: that is it which goeth toward the east of Assyria. And the fourth river is Euphrates.

In the TLB version it reads:
10 A river from the land of Eden flowed through the garden to water it; afterwards the river divided into four branches. 11-12 One of these was named the Pishon; it winds across the entire length of the land of Havilah,[a] where nuggets of pure gold are found, also beautiful bdellium and even lapis lazuli. 13 The second branch is called the Gihon, crossing the entire length of the land of Cush. 14 The third branch is the Tigris, which flows to the east of the city of Asher. And the fourth is the Euphrates.

Footnotes:

Genesis 2:11 the land of Havilah, located along the border of Babylonia.

The books of Isaiah, Ezekiel, and Joel also have references to the Garden of Eden. In Ezekiel the reference is to the king of Tyre, who was kicked out because he ticked off the Emperor, probably for collaborating with the Egyptian Pharaoh (the talking serpent).
BibleGateway - : garden of eden
https://www.biblegateway.com/quicksearch/?qs_version=KJV%3BAMP%3BCJB%3BJ...

BibleGateway - : garden of eden
https://www.biblegateway.com/quicksearch/?qs_version=KJV%3BAMP%3BCJB%3BJ...

BibleGateway - : garden of eden
https://www.biblegateway.com/quicksearch/?qs_version=KJV%3BAMP%3BCJB%3BJ...

The Garden of Eden could refer to the Egyptian Empire, which included the areas described in Genesis 2:10-14.
Egypt, ancient: empire during the rule of Thutmose III, about 1479 BCE -- Kids Encyclopedia | Children's Homework Help | Kids Online Dictionary | Britannica
http://kids.britannica.com/comptons/art-143572/During-the-New-Kingdom-pe...

In any case, the passage clearly names Assyria and Ethiopia and we know that they were populated.

While almost everyone might have a Bible very few people read it. Most of them are completely clueless as to what's in it and get their info from movies and preachers. Some claim to study it but they don't know such basic things as to what the real Ten Commandments are and that all of the biblical stories are based on them.

SBMontero's picture
@Diotrephes: Yes, we know

@Diotrephes: Yes, we know that Assyria and Ethiopia were populated, because we know of history, archeology and paleontology, but that isn't what Genesis says, what Genesis says is that god creates Adam and Eve, they're expelled from paradise, they have two sons, Abel and Cain, Cain kills Abel and this one has offspring with... With whom? Because nowhere in Genesis does say anything that god made more people... I repeat, or do you know of any verse in Genesis where says anything about it?

But, to clarify, Are you saying that the garden of Eden existed? Really? Ôo)-~

Sky Pilot's picture
SBMontero,

SBMontero,

You're starting to become dense.

In Genesis 1:26-28 (CEV) = 26 God said, “Now we will make humans, and they will be like us. We will let them rule the fish, the birds, and all other living creatures.”

27 So God created humans to be like himself; he made men and women. 28 God gave them his blessing and said:

Have a lot of children! Fill the earth with people and bring it under your control. Rule over the fish in the ocean, the birds in the sky, and every animal on the earth."

The Adam & Eve story is about the progenitors of the Israelites/Hebrews/Jews. It's a completely different story. Adam was the first Adam (or son of God) and Jesus was the last Adam (son of God). The difference between them was that Adam was made from dirt with Eve created from his rib while Jesus was made from woman. And Abel was the first prophet.

You are also missing a big part of the story. Guess what it is? In Genesis chapter 1 God creates humans on the sixth day as his crowning achievement. In Genesis chapter 2 God creates Adam but before it had ever rained or before he had made any plants or animals.

The Garden of Eden is a metaphor for one of the ancient empires, probably the Egyptian one. Remember the "Land of the Rising Sun"?

SBMontero's picture
Nop...

Nop...

26. God said "Now we will make man (MAN, not human, NOT, and man, NOT men, NOT, man, ONE man, Adam) in our image and likeness: let him (HIM, not them, HIM"

But if you know the term "human" in Aramaic, or ancient Hebrew, please don't hesitate to put it in the reply to this comment. Ahead.

And for the genesis is a metaphor of... I'm sorry, it's anything that doesn't belong to who Cain married and that Genesis doesn't clarify, although if you're saying that @UnKnown made reference the same as you, it's going to be not.

Sky Pilot's picture
SBMontero,

SBMontero,

So God made men and women but he made women out of the men's ribs (Genesis 1.27). And he did that before it had even rained and before plants and animals existed. Thanks for clearing that up. It all makes sense now. Maybe God made Cain's wife from one of Cain's toe nail clippings or from Cain's fruit salad? After all, he made man before he made plants and animals, didn't he?

SBMontero's picture
Nop...

Nop...

Genesis 1:27

27 So God created man in his own image,
in the image of God he created him;
male and female he created them.

Should I re-emphasize it in bold, or...? Did you already find what is called "human" in Aramaic or ancient Hebrew?

That's the garden of Eden existed and god created something... just one more question, What kind of atheist are you? Light? Decaffeinated? Metaphorical?

Sky Pilot's picture
In the Bible and in the

In the Bible and in the Jewish Babylonian Talmud the word "man" only refers to Jews, it does not refer to Gentiles because they are considered animals. In the biblical story Adam is the progenitor of the Israelites/Hebrews/Jews. Jesus is the last Adam. Abel was the first prophet.

SBMontero's picture
And you're absolutely right..

And you're absolutely right... but that has a damn shit to do with what Genesis says what it says and the Christians are still spinning around with whatever the fuck Cain married, because they don't interpret the bible, especially the Old Testament, from the ancient Hebrew point of view, it's more, I'm gong to say that the Hebrews don't either.

When I ask a Christian believer who quotes the scriptures for Cain's wife, he always comes out by peteneras, which is what you have just done, but from the pseudo historical metaphorical interpretation of Genesis. You've your merit, I don't take you away.

Sky Pilot's picture
SBMontero,

SBMontero,

I know you've read the story but you are failing to think about it and to use your knowledge and experience. The story clearly says that the Garden of Eden was down the road from Assyria, Ethiopia, Arabia, and Persia and that it was bound by four rivers. Now, looking at an area map you can see where the Euphrates River is so you know that's the northern border. You can see where Ethiopia (Cush/Sudan) is. That's the southern border. So what's the big country between them that's not named? It's Egypt!! Egypt plays just as much of a major role in the fairy tale as Canaan does.

So how do you get Egypt up to the Euphrates River? You read world history. What you discover is that the Egyptian Pharaoh Tutmosis III extended the Egyptian Empire to the Euphrates River. He had gold mines in Nubia (Havilah). Egypt's Golden Empire . New Kingdom . Overview | PBS
http://www.pbs.org/empires/egypt/newkingdom/index.html

As is the usual practice people like to keep the location of their gold mines secret so you will have trouble finding where Havilah is in the Bible. That's where knowing world history comes in handy.

Egypt's Golden Empire . New Kingdom . Tuthmosis III | PBS
http://www.pbs.org/empires/egypt/newkingdom/tuthmosis3.html

Thutmose III | king of Egypt | Britannica.com
https://www.britannica.com/biography/Thutmose-III

So, based on the biblical description of the Garden of Eden a case can be made that Pharaoh Tutmosis' empire was the Garden of Eden and that he was the talking serpent, associated with the serpent on his crown.

We also know from the fairy tale that the king of Tyre lived in the Garden of Eden until he got kicked out by the Emperor. But that's another story.

As an educated adult do you really believe that Cain couldn't find a woman in that large area to marry? And is the detail about Cain's wife really what the story is about anyway? It's not, so it's silly to obsess over it. Remember what Jesus said in Luke 11:51 (CEB) = "This includes the murder of every prophet—from Abel to Zechariah—who was killed between the altar and the holy place. Yes, I’m telling you, this generation will be charged with it."

SBMontero's picture
@Diotrephes: And you tell me

@Diotrephes: And you tell me all this like a Christian, or like an interpreter of the Hebrew metaphor? Because I'm interested in knowing what all this is about Christians being unable to answer the simple question of who Cain married... really. Any comments about?

Sky Pilot's picture
SBMontero,

SBMontero,

The story about Cain's marriage illustrates a violation of the First Commandment in Exodus 34:11-16. Cain moved to another land and fraternized with the enemy, taking a foreign wife. That was was major no-no in a lot of other stories, although at other times a lot of big wigs did it. And remember, Cain killed the first prophet, Abel. The God character didn't punish him for that. However, Jesus accused his listeners of killing all of the prophets from Abel to Zechariah. He said that they would pay for that.

Joshua Thanopoulos's picture
Christians are unable to

Christians are unable to answer who he married because it doesn't say her name. If Cain committed incest, it would have been written, both that Cain committed incest and that Adam and Eve had another child. But it doesn't. It says Cain left to a place called Nod, and he made love to his wife there. Since there is no mention of incest or other children of Adam and Eve for Cain to have incest, it is assumed that Cain did not commit incest.

SBMontero's picture
@UnKnown: Do you know what's

@UnKnown: Do you know what's the problem? Atheists don't need to question the bible, we know when was written, we know who wrote it, we know where was written and we know why was written, so that isn't the point. The existence of god, or gods nor is the point, we know it doesn't exist, there's no reason for it. The question is why anyone is supposed to need a religion.

Why do you need a religion?

Wilfrid Masgnaux's picture
Okay, what is right about God

Okay, what is right about God purging most of Mankind during the flood?

Sky Pilot's picture
Stu. K., what do you want

Stu. K., what do you want religion to do for you? It sounds as if you were trying to adopt the ethnocentric Middle Eastern Jewish religious fairy tale as your own. That's very hard to do if you don't have the cultural and ethnic ties. It's like an Eskimo trying to become a muslim and adopting the ethnocentric Middle Eastern Arabian religious fairy tale. It just won't make sense.

Stu. K.'s picture
I was trying to live as the

I was trying to live as the Bible says which I thought was a requirement at the time. So yeah..

Sky Pilot's picture
Stu. K.,

Stu. K.,

If you try to live as the Bible says you will end up in an asylum for the criminally insane or shot to death in a manhunt because of your criminal activities.

Stu. K.'s picture
Which is why I'm very happy

Which is why I'm very happy to have had the heart to cherry pick the bad parts out :b

bigbill's picture
you know there are strong

you know there are strong arguments for the existence of God, Including Jesus life, I use to randomly pick at verses that I thought didn`t add up or were contradictory if you will.I would read or hear from a liberal scholar of myth like robert m, price. who would state that the Jesus figure was a myth, Then I would read or listen to ben Witherington a conservative scholar and I would get so confused, They both make interesting points,with the enlightenment of the 18th century there came this study of textual criticism by Bultman and others and Robert strauss who didn`t believe in large segments of the new testament.I disagree with charlies premise above that you either wake up or you don`t in the next life, what he feels to understand and a lot of the non-believers like himis this world and life is a proving ground for the next life, What you do in this life counts toward the next one if your a Christian, The fact as he stated above is that he just doesn`t know one way or the other.

Sky Pilot's picture
Just remember: If the Bible

Just remember: If the Bible is true and if you are a Gentile you will be one of a Jew's 2,800 slaves for eternity.

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