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10 COMMENTS

  1. The answer I give to the “what would it take to believe?” question is that, “I don’t know what evidence I would need, but your God would.” I left my faith after several devout decades, but I await His knock at my heart’s door with a more-than-open invitation for him to drop by.

    I USE IT IN THE SAME WAY ATHEIST MIGHT APPEAL TO THE TEACHINGS OF SAM HARRIS, RICHARD DAWKINS OR MANY OTHER FOREFATHERS OF MODERN ATHEISM IN ARGUING AGAINST RELIGION.

    No atheist does this. There is no atheistic authority. No source of truth. Harris and Dawkins are becoming increasingly irrelevant to atheists, as their out-of-scope shenanigans are seen by many to be rejectable. If you want to put the Bible in the sometimes-useful-sometimes-not as-determined-by-the-reader category, then maybe.

    IT IS THE SAME WAY A BIOLOGIST APPEALS TO A MICROSCOPE TO CONCLUDE HIS FINDINGS ON EVOLUTION.

    A microscope is not authoritative. It’s not even a source. It’s a tool by which evidence can be viewed. It is never evidence. And anyone can look into a microscope for themselves. It requires no faith. Scientists do not take other scientists’ word for it.

    THE POINT IS SIMPLE, FINDING SUPPORT IN BIBLICAL TEXT TO SUPPORT A BIBLICAL GOD IS NOT IN VIOLATION OF THE REQUEST FOR GOD TO DO SOMETHING.

    God answers prayer because God says so in the Bible is not evidence, any more than Kim Jong Un’s divinity is affirmed by his claims about himself.

    PRAYER, AS IT RELATES TO THE FORGIVENESS OF SIN, IS 100% EFFECTIVE.

    You haven’t even shown that sin exists.

    • Hi Paul. Thanks for bringing these points to my attention. I have some responses below, and at the bottom I have a follow up question for you.

      “I await His knock at my heart’s door with a more-than-open invitation for him to drop by”

      Your answer seems to fit more in my 3rd post (not published yet, this is the first). But to give some highlights, I will likely be appealing to Rom 1:20, “For since the creation of the world his invisible qualities…have been clearly seen…so that none are without excuse.” There will be substantially more in the post, but I mention it because you seem to assume God has not showed you what you are looking for. I would ask, if you don’t know what you are looking for, how will you know when it is presented? If God appeared, standing in front of you (maybe you saw a bush on fire but the bush was not burning like Moses), what is to assume you would not later dismiss it as a dream or hallucination? One of the points I tried to express is that if God were subjugated to our demands (whether that is answer my prayer or appear to me so I cannot reject you), then he is not a God worth serving. If God answered every request, we would hold the power not God.

      “There is no atheist authority”

      You are right, those prominent atheists aren’t “authority” but they do present arguments regurgitated by many atheists. I’m not saying you do, only that it happens.

      “A microscope is a tool”

      So is prayer. Anyone can pray (look through the microscope). I hope Christians are resting in their own relationship and not just taking other Christians’ word. Though, like scientist, collaboration does help.

      “God answers prayer because God says so in the Bible…”

      That circular reasoning is the opposite of my intent. Thanks for bringing it to my attention. What I was trying to say is that the premise was wrong by the definition. For example, if I said, “The horse jumped under the fence.” That may be true, but you would likely appeal to a dictionary to argue a ‘jumping’ upward direction wouldn’t produce a downward ‘under’ result. I used the Bible as a dictionary to define the term through example. That is, if prayer is going to be evaluated for a tangible result, then let’s make sure prayer is doing what it is supposed to. As we learn from the Bible, prayer is not a magic healing want, but rather a communication device to the healer. Therefore, it’s not ‘because the Bible says so’ that means prayer works, rather prayer works because God (to whom the atheist made his appeal) exists. The conclusion relies on the premise.

      “You haven’t shown that sin exists”

      Great point. Sin was not the focus here. The focus was on the purpose of prayer. If we only consider prayer a means of physical healing, we will never have assurance of its affect. It’s like using a fork to eat soup.

      With all that said, I have one follow up question for you. Will you continue reading my posts through this series–to keep me honest. You caught some good points and allowed me a chance to clarify thoughts others may be confused on. Anyway, I really think my later conclusions are going to appeal to you more as I will be moving away from biblical examples and into God as living and active. I plan to have more current references.

      Either way, thanks for engaging. I hope this proves helpful in showing God is the supplier of all.

      • I WILL LIKELY BE APPEALING TO ROM 1:20, “FOR SINCE THE CREATION OF THE WORLD HIS INVISIBLE QUALITIES…HAVE BEEN CLEARLY SEEN…SO THAT NONE ARE WITHOUT EXCUSE.”

        If God has decided the level of proof that he is willing to give, but created my brain to require more, then I guess I’m predestined to hell. I do not clearly see invisible qualities, despite my once-desperate, and still on-going, search. When you post part three, I’d encourage you to describe what a non-created world would look like, so as to make this claim a falsifiable one. (see below)

        IF GOD APPEARED, STANDING IN FRONT OF YOU (MAYBE YOU SAW A BUSH ON FIRE BUT THE BUSH WAS NOT BURNING LIKE MOSES), WHAT IS TO ASSUME YOU WOULD NOT LATER DISMISS IT AS A DREAM OR HALLUCINATION?

        It is true. I would want corroborating physical evidence, as dreams and hallucinations are well understood and would be a far more likely explanation than a visit with a deity. Maybe God would pose with me for a selfie? Or let me record the conversation? Or leave divine residue on the floor? Or tell me something that no human yet knows, but can be unambiguously verified?

        YOU ARE RIGHT, THOSE PROMINENT ATHEISTS AREN’T “AUTHORITY” BUT THEY DO PRESENT ARGUMENTS REGURGITATED BY MANY ATHEISTS. I’M NOT SAYING YOU DO, ONLY THAT IT HAPPENS.

        Just like theists tend to recycle popular arguments. (Please, please don’t break out the cosmological argument.) But we now agree that there are no atheist authorities analogous to Biblical authority. Unfortunately, I think that negates some of your rationale.

        SO IS PRAYER. ANYONE CAN PRAY (LOOK THROUGH THE MICROSCOPE).

        You first compared Biblical authority to microscope authority. Sounds like you retract that analogy, so I’ll drop it.

        IF PRAYER IS GOING TO BE EVALUATED FOR A TANGIBLE RESULT, THEN LET’S MAKE SURE PRAYER IS DOING WHAT IT IS SUPPOSED TO. AS WE LEARN FROM THE BIBLE, PRAYER IS NOT A MAGIC HEALING WANT, BUT RATHER A COMMUNICATION DEVICE TO THE HEALER.

        You understand that no claim can be evaluated if the claim cannot be negated / falsified, right? Under what outcome would a prayer be shown to not work, by your definition? I encourage you to look up Karl Popper’s Basic Scientific Principle. If a theory cannot be falsified, there is no point in even examining the evidence.

        WILL YOU CONTINUE READING MY POSTS THROUGH THIS SERIES–TO KEEP ME HONEST. YOU CAUGHT SOME GOOD POINTS AND ALLOWED ME A CHANCE TO CLARIFY THOUGHTS OTHERS MAY BE CONFUSED ON.

        Sure. Are you willing to do the same? https://chromosometwo.wordpress.com/category/atheism/

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