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RWGR
09-18-2013, 06:40 PM
The press is full of accounts that, once again, claim that Pope Francis has said you donít need to believe in God to go to heaven.

Even atheists can go there, according to these reports.

Whatís the real story here? Whatís going on? And why canít the press get this kind of thing right?
Here are 9 things to know and share . . .


Read more: http://www.ncregister.com/blog/jimmy-akin/did-pope-francis-say-atheists-dont-need-to-believe-in-god-to-be-saved-9-thi#ixzz2fIZo0Yrg

KDawg
09-18-2013, 08:19 PM
4) What did Pope Francis actually say about atheists and salvation?
Here is the passage:
First of all, you ask if the God of the Christians forgives those who do not believe and do not seek faith.
Given that—and this is fundamental—God's mercy has no limits if he who asks for mercy does so in contrition and with a sincere heart, the issue for those who do not believe in God is in obeying their own conscience.
In fact, listening and obeying it, means deciding about what is perceived to be good or to be evil.
The goodness or the wickedness of our behavior depends on this decision.
Pope Francis actually referred to God as "God of the Christians," not God.

That too is weird because his implication is obvious.

Bluesky
09-20-2013, 09:07 AM
Umm, no. That impies only that many non-Christians have other gods.

Aristotle
09-22-2013, 12:08 PM
Pope Francis actually referred to God as "God of the Christians," not God.

That too is weird because his implication is obvious.

You are totally incapable of seeing anything but controversy every time the Pope opens his mouth. That is a serious flaw, my friend.

The Berean
01-19-2014, 12:09 AM
".."...the issue for those who do not believe in God is in obeying their own conscience."

Is Francis saying that following ones own conscience is good enough for God??

The Left Sock
01-20-2014, 08:31 PM
I am stepping beyond my own boundaries, but if I may, I'll take a stab at what I think the Pope meant by that statement.

"...the issue for those who do not believe in God is in obeying their own conscience."

I think that what he is suggesting is, that God will still speak to those who do not believe in Him, and do so through their own conscience. In other words, God speaks to everyone, and anyone can still hear Him, if they try.

hobo
01-20-2014, 08:46 PM
This is nothing new.

DOGMATIC CONSTITUTION ON THE CHURCH
LUMEN GENTIUM
SOLEMNLY PROMULGATED BY HIS HOLINESS
POPE PAUL VI
ON NOVEMBER 21, 1964

".........126) But the plan of salvation also includes those who acknowledge the Creator. In the first place amongst these there are the Muslims, who, professing to hold the faith of Abraham, along with us adore the one and merciful God, who on the last day will judge mankind. Nor is God far distant from those who in shadows and images seek the unknown God, for it is He who gives to all men life and breath and all things,(127) and as Saviour wills that all men be saved.(128) Those also can attain to salvation who through no fault of their own do not know the Gospel of Christ or His Church, yet sincerely seek God and moved by grace strive by their deeds to do His will as it is known to them through the dictates of conscience.(19*) Nor does Divine Providence deny the helps necessary for salvation to those who, without blame on their part, have not yet arrived at an explicit knowledge of God and with His grace strive to live a good life........."

hobo
01-20-2014, 08:50 PM
Forgot to post the link.
Lumen Gentium

http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_const_19641121_lumen-gentium_en.html

The Berean
01-20-2014, 10:00 PM
I am stepping beyond my own boundaries, but if I may, I'll take a stab at what I think the Pope meant by that statement.

"...the issue for those who do not believe in God is in obeying their own conscience."

I think that what he is suggesting is, that God will still speak to those who do not believe in Him, and do so through their own conscience. In other words, God speaks to everyone, and anyone can still hear Him, if they try.

I can agree with that. But I still believe that those who deny Him, that is, His very existance, will be denied by Him on Judgement Day.

The Left Sock
01-20-2014, 10:13 PM
Denying someone is a deliberate act. If someone simply doesn't know, it doesn't mean denial.

It's just ignorance, not defiance.

The Berean
01-20-2014, 10:25 PM
Denying someone is a deliberate act. If someone simply doesn't know, it doesn't mean denial.

It's just ignorance, not defiance.

Yes, that's my point. Defiance, ignorance, willful ignorance, who knows?? Well, I believe God knows the heart, and He will judge properly.

The Left Sock
01-20-2014, 10:29 PM
Well, how is a Pygmy supposed to get into Heaven, if ignorance alone will cancel your ticket?

There has to be a 'gee, never heard of you' exemption card in the mix, or the whole system breaks down, in my opinion.

If all humans can get to Heaven, then it stands to reason that not all of them have to have access to knowledge about Christianity, in order to make the trip.

The Berean
01-20-2014, 10:35 PM
Well, how is a Pygmy supposed to get into Heaven, if ignorance alone will cancel your ticket?

There has to be a 'gee, never heard of you' exemption card in the mix, or the whole system breaks down, in my opinion.

If all humans can get to Heaven, then it stands to reason that not all of them have to have access to knowledge about Christianity, in order to make the trip.

I'm sorry for not being clear.

I did NOT mean that ignorance alone will keep one out of heaven. After all, what does even the best educated Christian scholar know about the totallity of Christian knowledge??

It's the heart that God looks at. The knowledge we gain going through life will HELP us in our Christian walk, but it won't save us.

I think I'm still not clear. Hmmm.

The Left Sock
01-21-2014, 09:34 AM
This is the area where I get into trouble with the whole Christianity thing. And I don't mean to be a pain in the butt about it, I sincerely have a hard time wrapping my mind around all the 'pushes and pulls' in Christian thought, that makes it all seem like a muddled mess to me.

Bluesky
01-21-2014, 11:04 AM
OK, the Bible actually tells us (not unambiguously, Berean) that people are not lost due to their ignorance, they are lost due to their sin. The first few chapters of Romans makes that pretty clear.

It is also clear about the fact that God is not unjust, and that no one will be able to legitimately say to God, "That's not fair". Everyone has a conscience, and how they respond to their conscience is critical. Unfortunately, many people suppress the voice of conscience. And thus, when suppressed enough, it becomes mute. But they are responsible for the suppression.

Hans
01-21-2014, 05:24 PM
Out of curiosity, how many chapters are in the Bible?

The Berean
01-21-2014, 05:38 PM
Out of curiosity, how many chapters are in the Bible?

There are 66 books. Chapters and verses were a later change, to aid study.

Hans
01-21-2014, 05:42 PM
Just wondering why a few chapters of Romans would make this very clear. No information that pertains to this issue in any other chapters?

The Berean
01-21-2014, 10:19 PM
OK, the Bible actually tells us (not unambiguously, Berean) that people are not lost due to their ignorance, they are lost due to their sin. The first few chapters of Romans makes that pretty clear.

It is also clear about the fact that God is not unjust, and that no one will be able to legitimately say to God, "That's not fair". Everyone has a conscience, and how they respond to their conscience is critical. Unfortunately, many people suppress the voice of conscience. And thus, when suppressed enough, it becomes mute. But they are responsible for the suppression.

Then I am lost, because I remain a sinner. Is that it? All have sinned?? Or are Christians perfect after being saved?

Bluesky
01-22-2014, 07:41 AM
No Christian is perfect. And we are not saved due to any lack of sinning, or due to the degree of our righteous acts. We are saved because our sins are atoned for and we trust the Lord to keep His word when He says, "Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them." Jn 3:36

Belief here means a lot more than mental assent or an intellectual theoretical agreement. It is more existential than that. It is more like reliance. I believe that He will do what He says, and that belief transforms me on the inside. It changes how I see things. I see things from His point of view. This is what the Scriptures also say " 17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new." 2 Cor 5:17

The Left Sock
01-22-2014, 07:43 AM
So, in other words, you don't agree with the Pope that those ignorant of God can still be granted access to Heaven, right?

Because in order to have 'reliance' in something, you must first have knowledge of it.

Bluesky
01-22-2014, 10:02 AM
Absolutely.
We have no warrant to say things that the Bible doesn't say. Not even the Pope.
The Bible tells us that those without the law (read ignorant of) will be judged without the law. But they will be judged by the natural law that exists in each man's heart.

We cannot take things we wish were true and by wishing, make them true.

Will there be mercy on those who are ignorant? We Christians must let God be the judge. as mentioned before, no one will (in His presence) say That's not fair.

The Berean
01-22-2014, 10:39 AM
.....Because in order to have 'reliance' in something, you must first have knowledge of it.

I believe it possible that salvation occurs when the human soul relaizes there is something (or Someone) greater that it should seek out. God know the heart.

As for me, I trust in God. My knowledge helps me grow in Christ, but it will never save me.

The Left Sock
01-22-2014, 07:39 PM
"The Bible tells us that those without the law (read ignorant of) will be judged without the law. But they will be judged by the natural law that exists in each man's heart."

That sounds like those who are ignorant of God still have a way into Heaven.

The Berean
01-22-2014, 08:55 PM
"The Bible tells us that those without the law (read ignorant of) will be judged without the law. But they will be judged by the natural law that exists in each man's heart."

That sounds like those who are ignorant of God still have a way into Heaven.

Yes, I believe it does. And I trust God to determine that.

Bluesky
01-23-2014, 09:10 AM
Actually not. Because the Bible goes on to say that every single person will be found guilty, because they have all broken their own rules (natural law) even though ignorant of God's laws. And frankly, there is probably not that big a difference between natural law and God's law..

The Berean
01-23-2014, 09:26 AM
Actually not. Because the Bible goes on to say that every single person will be found guilty, because they have all broken their own rules (natural law) even though ignorant of God's laws. And frankly, there is probably not that big a difference between natural law and God's law..

We ALL break God's and natural laws. You seem to be saying the one, ignorant of God's laws, has no way to be saved.

Or is it possible that God will judge the heart?

Bluesky
01-23-2014, 11:10 AM
No, that is not what I am saying. I am answering the question, Why are people lost? People are lost because of their sin.
People are saved because Jesus Christ atoned for their sin.

Yes, God will judge the heart.
The question becomes, what does the Bible say about the criteria by which he judges?

The Left Sock
01-23-2014, 04:50 PM
Again, this is where the push and pull of Christian ideology gets my head spinning.

- People who are ignorant of God will be judged without the law.

- But all those without the law will be found guilty of breaking their own law.

So, back to square one. The pygmies are screwed. Pope Francis is wrong.

Not trying to be inflammatory, just trying to keep up with things. Have I got that right?

So, we are all sinners, even if we never heard of God, and the only remedy to our failed selves is to ask for forgiveness to a God we may or may not have known about?

If I may be perfectly honest here, this kind of thing has always been my largest bone of contention with Christianity. It's all like a Chinese finger-trap to me. You can put your fingers in it, but you can't get them out, if you don't know the secret. Someone else controls the secret, and you will be dazzled when they decide to share the secret with you. Then you are in the club, and can dazzle the next guy that comes along.

So many twists and turns. So many open doors, with trap doors under them.

In all honesty, when I look at the whole Christianity thing from a wide perspective, it just looks like a whole lot of mortal men, vying for control over each other; quibbling, fighting, destroying each other over who has the best finger-trap, and who can hold onto the secret the longest. I don't see any Higher Power, running any of it.

I'm not saying there isn't a unifying force out there, something greater than ourselves, some thing that is guiding or assisting us as we hurtle through space on this big blue marble, but if there is a Being at the center of the mystery, I'm quite comfortable in accepting the idea that they aren't overly concerned with the petty squabbles of spiritual infants, fighting in the sandbox over who controls the toys, or who gets access to the sandbox.

The Berean
01-23-2014, 05:50 PM
No, that is not what I am saying. I am answering the question, Why are people lost? People are lost because of their sin.
People are saved because Jesus Christ atoned for their sin.

Yes, God will judge the heart.
The question becomes, what does the Bible say about the criteria by which he judges?

I KNOW Jesus atoned for their sin (and mine). Because we are all sinners.

So what does the bible say??

Bluesky
01-24-2014, 06:59 AM
Berean- read Rom 2 from verse 12 onward


12 For all who have sinned without the law will also perish without the law, and all who have sinned under the law will be judged by the law. 13 For it is not the hearers of the law who are righteous before God, but the doers of the law who will be justified. 14 For when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law. 15 They show that the work of the law is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness, and their conflicting thoughts accuse or even excuse them 16 on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.

17 But if you call yourself a Jew and rely on the law and boast in God 18 and know his will and approve what is excellent, because you are instructed from the law; 19 and if you are sure that you yourself are a guide to the blind, a light to those who are in darkness, 20 an instructor of the foolish, a teacher of children, having in the law the embodiment of knowledge and truth— 21 you then who teach others, do you not teach yourself? While you preach against stealing, do you steal? 22 You who say that one must not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? 23 You who boast in the law dishonor God by breaking the law. 24 For, as it is written, “The name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you.”

Paul here is speaking theoretically,dealing with the question of how God will judge those who were given no laws (Gentiles and perhaps those living before Moses) and those who were given the Law (Moses)

He continues to develop this theme where it almost sounds like a person can be justified by his own righteous works, but he culminates this theme by concluding -
“None is righteous, no, not one;
11 no one understands;
no one seeks for God.
12 All have turned aside; together they have become worthless;
no one does good,
not even one.”

And then he says towards the end of chapter 3

For there is no distinction: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and are justified by his grace as a gift, through the redemption that is in Christ Jesus, 25 whom God put forward as a propitiation by his blood, to be received by faith. This was to show God's righteousness, because in his divine forbearance he had passed over former sins. 26 It was to show his righteousness at the present time, so that he might be just and the justifier of the one who has faith in Jesus.

The Berean
01-24-2014, 07:13 AM
I see nothing there to counter what I said.

What's your take on it?

Bluesky
01-24-2014, 07:14 AM
I enjoy your writing ability, Soc. You have a way with words.

OK, so about the dilemma that you pose. We Christians have disagreements about secondary issues; and this is one of them. But most Christians will agree on how to get your finger out of the finger trap. If you refuse to extricate yourself from the finger trap because you cannot believe that there are others who don't get the message of how to release the finger.. well, that seems somehow absurdly illogical.

It must be that you find the main message of the gospel somehow unbelievable for more fundamental reasons..

Bluesky
01-24-2014, 07:15 AM
I see nothing there to counter what I said.

What's your take on it?

OK, I am not sure what we are arguing about :)

It seemed to me you were arguing for a more inclusivist position.

The Berean
01-24-2014, 07:30 AM
OK, I am not sure what we are arguing about :)

It seemed to me you were arguing for a more inclusivist position.

I probably am.

You appear to be saying that one MUST know Jesus to be saved. Is that correct?

Bluesky
01-24-2014, 09:21 AM
*Lengthy post warning*

So first of all for context, here is a broad brush spectrum of the positions that are held by different ones.

pluralism - all paths are valid and true

universalists - God will save everyone eventually regardless of their belief or lack thereof.

inclusivists - people who believe that God will include some sincere believers of various religions. Inclusivists believe that all people who are saved will be saved through Jesus Christ, and that He is the only way to eternal life, but they do not believe that the one being saved must be consciously be aware of Jesus Christ or the gospel.

It's easy for Christians to be drawn to these various beliefs, because they want to follow their heart, and priority is given to their own sense of what is fair rather than objectively determining what Scripture actually says. I certainly feel that tug.

So let me set this up.

The Bible says that God is good, gracious, merciful, fair and right concerning everything He does.

The LORD is gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made. (Ps 145.8f)

Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be sons of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your brothers, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect. (Matt 5.44ff)

Shall not the God of all the earth do right? (Gen 18.25)

God is also Just and holy.


He is the Rock, his works are perfect, and all his ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is he. (Deut 32.4)
He will judge the world in righteousness and the peoples with equity. (Ps 98.9)

We cannot cherry pick God's attributes and pull out just the attributes of compassion and mercy and love in order to support our point of view. Mercy, love and compassion must go hand in hand with holiness and justice and God's wrath towards sin.

Ultimately we know that there will be no one who will be able to say to God, "That's not fair.'

So does the Bible say anything about the fate of those who have not heard?

Yes it does. .


Romans 1:18
The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness,

People are condemned for acting against the knowledge of God who says they have suppressed that knowledge by their wicked actions.

In other words, by virtue of the evidence of a creator all around them, they know intuitively that there is a God. But they reject that knowledge because they want to continue to live in their self-centred willful ways.

So this is the first way that the truth of God has been revealed to "those who haven't heard" Through the mysteries of creation. That mystery that Soc talks about? That is what he is picking up on. There has GOT to be Someone there who started all of this, and the Bible makes the assumption that that intuitive knowledge also carries with it an intuitive sense of obligation and accountability.

Then
See verse 12.
All who sin apart from the law will also perish apart from the law, and all who sin under the law will be judged by the law

In other words... both sets of people will perish (Jews and Gentiles) . Not because they haven't heard, but because

1. They were obligated to God's moral law
2. They did not take even the first step in the right direction

So, everyone apart from the law has a conscience, and although it is a fallen conscience, we by nature know enough about moral law to know when we are rebelling against it and we feel guilty about it.

Once again, it's the sin and the lawlessness that is condemned, not man's ignorance of the gospel.

Now let us look at this from another angle.

Why did He give us the Great commission, which commands us to proclaim the gospel to every creature?

It does not make sense to make someone aware of the gospel and risk that they reject it, because then they are really screwed. If this were true, that sincere people of every religion are okay by God, the gospel message should then be, "Live as good as life as you can. Be sincere in what you believe and you will be okay!"


Rom 10:13
13 “For "everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." 14 But how are they to call on him in whom they have not believed? And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard? And how are they to hear without someone preaching? 15 And how are they to preach unless they are sent? …. 17 So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ.”

Another text that speaks directly to those who have not heard:


ROM 15:20-21
It has always been my ambition to preach the gospel where Christ was not known, so that I would not be building on someone else’s foundation. 21 Rather, as it is written:
“Those who were not told about him will see, and those who have not heard will understand"

So you see, Paul did not sit around on his couch and philosophize over the question, "What is God going to do to those who haven't heard?" He mobilized and became the greatest missionary and church planter the world has ever known.

There is ONE passage in the Bible that helps me in dealing with this question. The Lord indicates in his Word that there are degrees of judgment, just as there are degrees of reward in heaven. So we have verses like Matt 10:15

Read the chapter for context - Jesus is talking about those towns that reject the disciples' message, and he says in Matt 11


15 I tell you the truth, it will be more bearable for Sodom and Gomorrah on the day of judgment than for that town.

20 Then Jesus began to denounce the cities in which most of his miracles had been performed, because they did not repent. 21 “Woe to you, Korazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 But I tell you, it will be more bearable for Tyre and Sidon on the day of judgment than for you. 23 And you, Capernaum, will you be lifted up to the skies? No, you will go down to the depths.a If the miracles that were performed in you had been performed in Sodom, it would have remained to this day. 24 But I tell you that it will be more bearable for Sodom on the day of judgment than for you.”


So judgment will not be a One size fits all approach. God will be very fair in judgment, and give to each according to their guilt.
Now I know that some of you are still thinking.. "I'm still not satisfied. That's still not fair."
It offends your sense of justice. So let's think about justice.
You think that God's standard of justice should satisfy and match your sense of justice?

Let's think about God's standard of justice. What does God's justice call for?

Doesn't the Bible say, "The soul that sins, it shall die?" Doesn't it say, "An eye for an eye, tooth for tooth?" Lex talionis?

Justice is measuring out to everyone what they deserve, not giving to everyone equally something they have not deserved or earned. And you are demanding not JUSTICE, and when you object and say "That's not fair" what you really want to see is mercy and grace and pardon, not justice.

And of course, you know where we need to go for grace, mercy and pardon. :)

*kudos if you've read this far.*

The Left Sock
01-24-2014, 11:24 AM
Well if there really is a God, and there really is a judgment, I'll be willing to take my licks, and I won't be asking for a pardon.

What I'm not willing to do, is join in the fray of mortal men killing each other over which version of God they think is more correct.

So, here's an interesting question: Which offence do you think is worse?

- staying away from participating in organized religion (thereby missing knowledge of God) because of the damage men cause while chasing it, or

- participating in a religion (thereby having knowledge of God), and in doing so, pitting yourself against other men who also are trying to find their way to God?

My beliefs are centered on the fact that life is suffering, and the road to enlightenment involves a reduction of suffering. I see no reduction of suffering coming from mankind's organized attempts at finding God. I do see the reduction of suffering as being perfectly in line with what Jesus taught, and spent most of his time here on earth, trying to accomplish.

I guess it comes down to which thing you find most important; being right, or doing right.

Those who focus on works may do good things, but may miss out on the Holy aspect.

Those who focus on being Holy may have the law on their side, but may miss out on making the world a better place.

I guess I'm just one of those people who would rather be judged on my actions, than on what I believe about them. For me, the proof is in the pudding, and I'll take whatever comes my way, as a result of that.

Bluesky
01-24-2014, 12:48 PM
You have created a false dillemma.

The Left Sock
01-24-2014, 01:36 PM
The history of religion in this world would suggest otherwise.

The Voice
01-24-2014, 02:36 PM
You have created a false dillemma.

How so?

The Voice
01-24-2014, 02:36 PM
The history of religion in this world would suggest otherwise.

How so?

The Left Sock
01-24-2014, 02:43 PM
Cling to being right, or cling to doing good. As far as Christianity goes, I don't see these things as compatible.

Countless people I have encountered, who claim to be Christians, are completely obsessed with believing they are right, that others are wrong, and that everyone else should believe as they do. They are consumed by it, surrounding themselves with others who are like-minded, and comforting themselves with the feeling they have it all figured out, while the world burns.

It's both a disease and a tragedy, because there are good people in the world, living out their lives in peace, doing whatever is in their power to make the world a better place, and using their Christianity as a basis for what motivates them. But you don't get to see those people very often; they aren't driven by a thirst for power or control, they are doing the actual work that resembles the way Jesus lived.

What you do see, are a whole lot of people, chasing wealth and power, polluting the air waves with a constant attempt to further their sphere of influence, while subtly denigrating every other belief around them, in some big-picture enterprise to own the world. And every once in a while, a large enough group gains enough power, to convince entire governments to act out this delusion of power, and entire countries go up in flames, all in the name of the Prince of Peace.

It's really sad, and it makes me sad to think about it.

The Voice
01-24-2014, 02:50 PM
Cling to being right, or cling to doing good. As far as Christianity goes, I don't see these things as compatible.

Countless people I have encountered, who claim to be Christians, are completely obsessed with believing they are right, that others are wrong, and that everyone else should believe as they do. They are consumed by it, surrounding themselves with others who are like-minded, and comforting themselves with the feeling they have it all figured out, while the world burns.

It's both a disease and a tragedy, because there are good people in the world, living out their lives in peace, doing whatever is in their power to make the world a better place, and using their Christianity as a basis for what motivates them. But you don't get to see those people very often; they aren't driven by a thirst for power or control, they are doing the actual work that resembles the way Jesus lived.

What you do see, are a whole lot of people, chasing wealth and power, polluting the air waves with a constant attempt to further their sphere of influence, while subtly denigrating every other belief around them, in some big-picture enterprise to own the world. And every once in a while, a large enough group gains enough power, to convince entire governments to act out this delusion of power, and entire countries go up in flames, all in the name of the Prince of Peace.

It's really sad, and it makes me sad to think about it.

Hear! Hear!

The Berean
01-24-2014, 04:25 PM
Hear! Hear!

Ho, ho!!!

Sock, I know people who are obsessed with being right. Here in the Sault, however, I have seen MANY churches led by people like that come and go. Those individuals who obsess lose their children, and their obsession dies with them.

Successful local churches are led by those who are more concerned with spreading the gospel than being right all the time.

You may recall that the only one I agree with on everything is the one I see in the mirror each morning.

Bluesky
01-25-2014, 01:44 PM
How so?

A false dilemma is a type of informal fallacy that involves a situation in which limited alternatives are considered, when in fact there is at least one additional option. -wikipedia

Bluesky
01-25-2014, 01:47 PM
Herein lies the false dilemma;

Cling to being right, or cling to doing good. As far as Christianity goes, I don't see these things as compatible.

Black and white thinking.

The Left Sock
01-25-2014, 02:11 PM
Since human energy is finite, it isn't black and white at all. You spend a lot of energy trying to 'be right', you have less time to 'do right'.

Unless, of course, you think that by spending all your time trying to spread and defend Christianity, you think you are actually doing the right thing. I don't look at that as the same thing at all.

The Left Sock
01-25-2014, 02:15 PM
Eaxmples:

Mother Teresa - A Christian who spends most of her time doing right.

Pat Robertson - A Christian who spends most of his time being right.

I see a whole lot of Pat Robertson types in the world. Very few Mother Teresa types.

That should make the case nicely.

Bluesky
01-25-2014, 02:20 PM
Subjective. I can easily say the opposite, probably because I see it from within.

You insist that "being right" and "doing right" are on opposite ends of the stick. If that is the case, you have posted far more here lately than I have attempting to "be right". Thus you are hoisted on your own petard. So to speak.

But anytime you want to take an inside tour of my world, I would be happy to introduce you to a whole lot of Mother Theresa types.

The Left Sock
01-25-2014, 03:32 PM
I was talking about Christians. I'm not a Christian, so your point is mute. Or moot - take your pick!

Bluesky
01-25-2014, 03:58 PM
Sorry, I do not follow. I too thought you were talking about Christians.
Oh, I get it.
So a Buddhist can spend time "being right" rather than "doing right". Gotcha.
But not a Christian.

Well, the whole argument is moot/mute because it's not valid. The real problem is that you selectively use someone whose efforts to be right are plain wrong, and then make it the polar opposite of doing right. In reality doing right is being right, and being right will lead to doing right.

Orthodoxy leads to orthopraxy every time.

The Left Sock
01-26-2014, 03:42 AM
You slice and dice it any way you have to, to get by.

As far as I'm concerned, spreading Christianity and defending Christianity takes away time and energy from being one.

That's just my opinion.

The Berean
01-26-2014, 08:47 AM
You slice and dice it any way you have to, to get by.
As far as I'm concerned, spreading Christianity and defending Christianity takes away time and energy from being one.
That's just my opinion.

Here's MY opinion. On what the bible says about it.

Eph 4:11-12
11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;
12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:

Apostles are leaders, and helping others BE Christians, as are prophets and pastor teachers. Evangelists are specifically going out to spread the gospel, as we are told to do by Christ,

Mark 16:15
15 And he said unto them, Go ye into all the world, and preach the gospel to every creature.

..and prophets and pastors do that too, as should all Christians.

We have to seek a balance, to be spreading, defending and being.

The Left Sock
01-26-2014, 01:16 PM
See, I guess the difference lies in the fact that I have a different belief system.

Buddhists don't spread their message. And because of that, we don't have to spend any time defending it.

Historically, this system has led to a lot less conflict throughout the world. At least where Buddhists are concerned.

The Berean
01-26-2014, 01:21 PM
If there is no belief in the afterlife, it makes perfect sense.

As to the conflict, I doubt there's a direct correlation. And Buddhists DO get into battle now and again.

The Left Sock
01-26-2014, 02:20 PM
So, it is acceptable for human beings to destroy each other, entirely based on a speculative afterlife?

As for conflicts originated by Buddhists, you will need some sharp Google skills to enumerate them.

Instead of worrying about whether or not atheists need to believe in God in order to be saved, perhaps a deeper question would be preferable: at what price, are you willing to get the message out?

Bluesky
01-26-2014, 02:25 PM
That's just my opinion.
On this we agree.

The Left Sock
01-26-2014, 02:31 PM
Not really. You think you are bound and sanctioned by an almighty deity, so are your opinions really your own?

The Berean
01-26-2014, 07:01 PM
So, it is acceptable for human beings to destroy each other, entirely based on a speculative afterlife?

As for conflicts originated by Buddhists, you will need some sharp Google skills to enumerate them.

Instead of worrying about whether or not atheists need to believe in God in order to be saved, perhaps a deeper question would be preferable: at what price, are you willing to get the message out?

I'm pretty sure that humans destroying each other would be against the basic tenets of the bible, as in Jesus words, "Love your neighbors as yourself". So they are obviously not doing it for God, perhaps SAYING they are, but obviously wrong.

I've seen some news about Buddhists fighting. It's not like it never happens.

At what price to get the message out?? Many Christians over the centuries have paid the ultimate price, because they believed that God wants the whole world to know.

The Berean
01-26-2014, 07:03 PM
Not really. You think you are bound and sanctioned by an almighty deity, so are your opinions really your own?

If He's an almighty diety, who sent His own Son to pay for my sin, why should I trust my own opinion??

The Left Sock
01-26-2014, 07:29 PM
The point is, if you have fully embraced someone else's doctrine for truth, if you have stopped questioning the validity of what you believe, even in the face of evidence which suggests that your beliefs are impossible, then;

- how can you be sure you have any real opinions on anything at all?

Formulating an opinion is qualified by first examining information with an open mind, then drawing your own conclusion on what you think about it. If you have bought an entire package of truth, and made it your own, then you have ceased having the ability to have an opinion (in my opinion, that is).

So, before someone gives smug comments about other peoples' opinions, I would recommend they take a look at whether or not they are even capable of the same, before submitting flippant responses.

The Berean
01-26-2014, 07:47 PM
Flippant means off the cuff, untrue, apathetic, don't give a damn, right??

I often question the validity of my beliefs, and the doctrine of my denomination, believe it or not. But I have never thrown the baby out with the bathwater!! We all have "real" opinions. But that's all they are. And when it comes to discussing the infinite, I for one am willing to admit my inadequacy.

So let's neither of us be smug.

BTW, "evidence which suggests that your beliefs are impossible" sounds like an interesting discussion. Because I sure ain't seen any!!!

The Left Sock
01-26-2014, 08:02 PM
Well, I wasn't referring to you re: flippant responses.

Some people get a defensive snark on, when their beliefs are placed under the microscope, as opposed to a place of ambivalence above it.

The Left Sock
01-26-2014, 08:09 PM
Church leaders and Popes normally have the same problem Michael Jackson had, with many of the same parallel consequences.

When you have immense wealth and power, and you are surrounded by people who suck up to you and gratify your every whim, there tends to be a lot of victims in the fallout.

This new Pope appears to be something different, something very refreshing and hopeful. A lot of other church leaders would do well to reflect on his example, rather than retreating into their bubbles of supporters, and getting indignant every time they get real questions from real people.

Bluesky
01-26-2014, 08:23 PM
Not really. You think you are bound and sanctioned by an almighty deity, so are your opinions really your own?

I made no claims about my opinion. I just agreed that what you said was your opinion. I agreed, It's your opinion.
C'mon man, don't quibble about everything I say in your efforts to be right!

The Left Sock
01-26-2014, 08:31 PM
You think being right so often is fun? You should try it sometime!

The pressure, the constant disappointment in others. It's like a waking nightmare, with a huge ball and chain of truth dragging around my neck all day, in a world full of simpletons oblivious to my plight. No one to help carry the burden!

But hey, enough about me. Please go back to your sarcastic witty retorts. I just needed a moment to vent!

Bluesky
01-27-2014, 07:56 AM
Oh no!! You're starting to sound like your nemesis, Winger!

Igor
01-27-2014, 08:25 AM
Oh no!! You're starting to sound like your nemesis, Winger!

Be careful. That's an insult. :) :) :)

The Left Sock
01-27-2014, 03:35 PM
The term nemesis would suggest a pitted match between opponents - I see no such dynamic at play.

Bluesky
01-27-2014, 04:17 PM
Alright. Enough chit chat.

The Left Sock
01-27-2014, 04:24 PM
An awkward silence ensues....

Igor
01-27-2014, 04:35 PM
Silence is golden.

Bluesky
01-28-2014, 09:07 AM
Why awkward? I am quite comfortable in silence. But then I am rather introvertish.