Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

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Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Daldianus on Tue Aug 18, 2009 3:36 pm

What do you think about this video?

I think he's onto something.

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by DeavonReye on Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:00 am

That has been my issue with anything having to do with "God", . . .because my church says that I should have "an INTIMATE personal relationship with God". I have absolutely NO idea what that even means. It really IS just "religion". A bunch of steps and rituals to make you believe that you are "okay with God". And what IS this relationship? It is YOUR ability to "have faith that your Bible reading, and prayer, is your connection/communication with God". Hardly a relationship, . . . obviously not "personal", . . .and definitely NOT at ALL "intimate"!!! Suspect
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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Daldianus on Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:05 am

DeavonReye wrote:That has been my issue with anything having to do with "God", . . .because my church says that I should have "an INTIMATE personal relationship with God". I have absolutely NO idea what that even means. It really IS just "religion". A bunch of steps and rituals to make you believe that you are "okay with God". And what IS this relationship? It is YOUR ability to "have faith that your Bible reading, and prayer, is your connection/communication with God". Hardly a relationship, . . . obviously not "personal", . . .and definitely NOT at ALL "intimate"!!! Suspect

You could have a 'personal relationship' with anything you have enough faith in I guess. Although the relationship is pretty much a one-way street Wink

Except if one labels one's subconscious and the thought it creates as 'Jesus' or whatever ...

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by DeavonReye on Wed Aug 19, 2009 10:49 am

Yeah, . . . it is labeled as "that still small voice", . . . but one can never fully know if it IS God, or just your own mind coming up with that, . . .again, a matter of faith. And it is that very thing that created the problem in my "spiritual life". Because it IS a faith thing, . . . it can never be "personal", or hardly "intimate". I could very well just be talking to myself, . . . which is just weird.
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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Daldianus on Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:13 am

DeavonReye wrote:Yeah, . . . it is labeled as "that still small voice", . . . but one can never fully know if it IS God, or just your own mind coming up with that, . . .again, a matter of faith. And it is that very thing that created the problem in my "spiritual life". Because it IS a faith thing, . . . it can never be "personal", or hardly "intimate". I could very well just be talking to myself, . . . which is just weird.

Personally I'm convinced that we, people in general, talk to ourselves. We do it all the time! We're in a constant dialogue with ourselves: should we do this or shouldn't we? etc.

And when people talk to 'God' they also talk to themselves, or rather their subconscious. Because 'God' never actually clearly responds, right? People simply attribute the 'voice in their head' to their respective God.

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by TPaine on Wed Aug 19, 2009 11:32 am

Dald, I think that video is right on the mark. IMO, Christianity, especially the fundamentalist version, is a fear based religion. If you don't have a "personal relationship" with Jesus you're going to hell. You were born a sinner and deserve to die and suffer for eternity because way back when the first couple ate fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil after God told them not to. For that all mankind was sentenced to die. The Christians added the hell part. It has never been part of Jewish belief. Personally, I question whether or not such punishment would be fair. Until they ate the forbidden fruit, they would have no way of knowing that it was wrong to disobey God. But that's for another post. To get back on topic, I've yet to talk to a proselytizer who, when I don't accept his opening argument, doesn't throw up Pascal's Wager, although I haven't met one yet that has heard of Pascal or his wager.
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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Daldianus on Wed Aug 19, 2009 12:15 pm

TPaine wrote:Dald, I think that video is right on the mark. IMO, Christianity, especially the fundamentalist version, is a fear based religion. If you don't have a "personal relationship" with Jesus you're going to hell. You were born a sinner and deserve to die and suffer for eternity because way back when the first couple ate fruit from the tree of knowledge of good and evil after God told them not to. For that all mankind was sentenced to die. The Christians added the hell part. It has never been part of Jewish belief. Personally, I question whether or not such punishment would be fair. Until they ate the forbidden fruit, they would have no way of knowing that it was wrong to disobey God. But that's for another post. To get back on topic, I've yet to talk to a proselytizer who, when I don't accept his opening argument, doesn't throw up Pascal's Wager, although I haven't met one yet that has heard of Pascal or his wager.

If I believed the Christian myth and was afraid I would also wish to hear Jesus' voice in my head. And I sure would at some point. The power of the subconscious (coupled with fear) is amazing.

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by DeavonReye on Wed Aug 19, 2009 12:44 pm

So true. If they never had the "fear of death", . . . would they even BE a christian? I would bet the majority only show up and "do the right things" because of Christianities claim that "those who are lost, burn for all eternity". If that wasn't the theology, I doubt that very many of them would hear the voice in their head as anything other than their own thoughts.
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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by TPaine on Wed Aug 19, 2009 2:23 pm

A rather long quote from Part 1 of Thomas Paine's Age of Reason expresses my view of Christianity better than I can.
"It is upon this plain narrative of facts, together with another case I am going to mention, that the Christian mythologists, calling themselves the Christian Church, have erected their fable, which for absurdity and extravagance is not exceeded by anything that is to be found in the mythology of the ancients.

"The ancient mythologists tell us that the race of Giants made war against Jupiter, and that one of them threw a hundred rocks against him at one throw; that Jupiter defeated him with thunder, and confined him afterwards under Mount Etna; and that every time the Giant turns himself, Mount Etna belches fire. It is here easy to see that the circumstance of the mountain, that of its being a volcano, suggested the idea of the fable; and that the fable is made to fit and wind itself up with that circumstance.

"The Christian mythologists tell that their Satan made war against the Almighty, who defeated him, and confined him afterwards, not under a mountain, but in a pit. It is here easy to see that the first fable suggested the idea of the second; for the fable of Jupiter and the Giants was told many hundred years before that of Satan.

"Thus far the ancient and the Christian mythologists differ very little from each other. But the latter have contrived to carry the matter much farther. They have contrived to connect the fabulous part of the story of Jesus Christ with the fable originating from Mount Etna; and, in order to make all the parts of the story tie together, they have taken to their aid the traditions of the Jews; for the Christian mythology is made up partly from the ancient mythology, and partly from the Jewish traditions.

"The Christian mythologists, after having confined Satan in a pit, were obliged to let him out again to bring on the sequel of the fable. He is then introduced into the garden of Eden in the shape of a snake, or a serpent, and in that shape he enters into familiar conversation with Eve, who is no ways surprised to hear a snake talk; and the issue of this tête-à-tête is, that he persuades her to eat an apple, and the eating of that apple damns all mankind.

"After giving Satan this triumph over the whole creation, one would have supposed that the church mythologists would have been kind enough to send him back again to the pit, or, if they had not done this, that they would have put a mountain upon him, (for they say that their faith can remove a mountain) or have put him under a mountain, as the former mythologists had done, to prevent his getting again among the women, and doing more mischief. But instead of this, they leave him at large, without even obliging him to give his parole. The secret of which is, that they could not do without him; and after being at the trouble of making him, they bribed him to stay. They promised him ALL the Jews, ALL the Turks by anticipation, nine-tenths of the world beside, and Mahomet into the bargain. After this, who can doubt the bountifulness of the Christian Mythology?

"Having thus made an insurrection and a battle in heaven, in which none of the combatants could be either killed or wounded --put Satan into the pit--let him out again--given him a triumph over the whole creation--damned all mankind by the eating of an apple, there Christian mythologists bring the two ends of their fable together. They represent this virtuous and amiable man, Jesus Christ, to be at once both God and man, and also the Son of God, celestially begotten, on purpose to be sacrificed, because they say that Eve in her longing had eaten an apple.

"Putting aside everything that might excite laughter by its absurdity, or detestation by its profaneness, and confining ourselves merely to an examination of the parts, it is impossible to conceive a story more derogatory to the Almighty, more inconsistent with his wisdom, more contradictory to his power, than this story is.

"In order to make for it a foundation to rise upon, the inventors were under the necessity of giving to the being whom they call Satan a power equally as great, if not greater, than they attribute to the Almighty. They have not only given him the power of liberating himself from the pit, after what they call his fall, but they have made that power increase afterwards to infinity. Before this fall they represent him only as an angel of limited existence, as they represent the rest. After his fall, he becomes, by their account, omnipresent. He exists everywhere, and at the same time. He occupies the whole immensity of space.

"Not content with this deification of Satan, they represent him as defeating by stratagem, in the shape of an animal of the creation, all the power and wisdom of the Almighty. They represent him as having compelled the Almighty to the direct necessity either of surrendering the whole of the creation to the government and sovereignty of this Satan, or of capitulating for its redemption by coming down upon earth, and exhibiting himself upon a cross in the shape of a man.

"Had the inventors of this story told it the contrary way, that is, had they represented the Almighty as compelling Satan to exhibit himself on a cross in the shape of a snake, as a punishment for his new transgression, the story would have been less absurd, less contradictory. But, instead of this they make the transgressor triumph, and the Almighty fall.

"That many good men have believed this strange fable, and lived very good lives under that belief (for credulity is not a crime) is what I have no doubt of. In the first place, they were educated to believe it, and they would have believed anything else in the same manner. There are also many who have been so enthusiastically enraptured by what they conceived to be the infinite love of God to man, in making a sacrifice of himself, that the vehemence of the idea has forbidden and deterred them from examining into the absurdity and profaneness of the story. The more unnatural anything is, the more is it capable of becoming the object of dismal admiration.
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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Wed Aug 19, 2009 6:32 pm



Well I guess if Jesus was hot, you can consider a personal relationship.

Then you have the cult called "The Family", who have to masturbate or have sex imagining vaginal/anal sex with Jesus so you can be his bride.

Too personal for my tastes. Smile

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Guest on Wed Aug 19, 2009 6:33 pm

It has always been my understanding that in order to have a personal relationship with anything, it had to be just that.... in person. For the sake of argument, our conversations here constitutes a relationship. However, we could quite easily pass one another on the street, and having never met in person, we would not realize it.

No one who believes that in order to be "saved he must have this relationship", has ever been able to reasonably explain to me how one goes about having a personal relationship with a spiritual being such as Jesus. I can buy the concept of getting to know the teachings of the man; or even following the dogma based wholly upon some man's interpretation of their religious texts. But none of this constitutes a personal relationship.

I can say that I have personal relationships with others of my particular belief through association with them. And regarding this personal relationship, it goes deeper than just discussing spiritual philosophy, we are a community of sorts who band together to support each other in all aspects of our lives. Because Christianity began as a communal type of order, I often wonder if this isn't some throwback to that sort of existence they are referring to. It sorta stands to reason in a way; association with non Christians is not only frowned upon, but in a lot of cases, people fear those who do not follow their path. People are advised against becoming "unequally yoked" where marriage is concerned. It's as if they still lived in segregated communities, and want to expand it even more.

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Daldianus on Thu Aug 20, 2009 3:29 am

TPaine wrote:A rather long quote from Part 1 of Thomas Paine's Age of Reason expresses my view of Christianity better than I can.
"It is upon this plain narrative of facts, together with another case I am going to mention, that the Christian mythologists, calling themselves the Christian Church, have erected their fable, which for absurdity and extravagance is not exceeded by anything that is to be found in the mythology of the ancients.

"The ancient mythologists tell us that the race of Giants made war against Jupiter, and that one of them threw a hundred rocks against him at one throw; that Jupiter defeated him with thunder, and confined him afterwards under Mount Etna; and that every time the Giant turns himself, Mount Etna belches fire. It is here easy to see that the circumstance of the mountain, that of its being a volcano, suggested the idea of the fable; and that the fable is made to fit and wind itself up with that circumstance.

"The Christian mythologists tell that their Satan made war against the Almighty, who defeated him, and confined him afterwards, not under a mountain, but in a pit. It is here easy to see that the first fable suggested the idea of the second; for the fable of Jupiter and the Giants was told many hundred years before that of Satan.

"Thus far the ancient and the Christian mythologists differ very little from each other. But the latter have contrived to carry the matter much farther. They have contrived to connect the fabulous part of the story of Jesus Christ with the fable originating from Mount Etna; and, in order to make all the parts of the story tie together, they have taken to their aid the traditions of the Jews; for the Christian mythology is made up partly from the ancient mythology, and partly from the Jewish traditions.

"The Christian mythologists, after having confined Satan in a pit, were obliged to let him out again to bring on the sequel of the fable. He is then introduced into the garden of Eden in the shape of a snake, or a serpent, and in that shape he enters into familiar conversation with Eve, who is no ways surprised to hear a snake talk; and the issue of this tête-à-tête is, that he persuades her to eat an apple, and the eating of that apple damns all mankind.

"After giving Satan this triumph over the whole creation, one would have supposed that the church mythologists would have been kind enough to send him back again to the pit, or, if they had not done this, that they would have put a mountain upon him, (for they say that their faith can remove a mountain) or have put him under a mountain, as the former mythologists had done, to prevent his getting again among the women, and doing more mischief. But instead of this, they leave him at large, without even obliging him to give his parole. The secret of which is, that they could not do without him; and after being at the trouble of making him, they bribed him to stay. They promised him ALL the Jews, ALL the Turks by anticipation, nine-tenths of the world beside, and Mahomet into the bargain. After this, who can doubt the bountifulness of the Christian Mythology?

"Having thus made an insurrection and a battle in heaven, in which none of the combatants could be either killed or wounded --put Satan into the pit--let him out again--given him a triumph over the whole creation--damned all mankind by the eating of an apple, there Christian mythologists bring the two ends of their fable together. They represent this virtuous and amiable man, Jesus Christ, to be at once both God and man, and also the Son of God, celestially begotten, on purpose to be sacrificed, because they say that Eve in her longing had eaten an apple.

"Putting aside everything that might excite laughter by its absurdity, or detestation by its profaneness, and confining ourselves merely to an examination of the parts, it is impossible to conceive a story more derogatory to the Almighty, more inconsistent with his wisdom, more contradictory to his power, than this story is.

"In order to make for it a foundation to rise upon, the inventors were under the necessity of giving to the being whom they call Satan a power equally as great, if not greater, than they attribute to the Almighty. They have not only given him the power of liberating himself from the pit, after what they call his fall, but they have made that power increase afterwards to infinity. Before this fall they represent him only as an angel of limited existence, as they represent the rest. After his fall, he becomes, by their account, omnipresent. He exists everywhere, and at the same time. He occupies the whole immensity of space.

"Not content with this deification of Satan, they represent him as defeating by stratagem, in the shape of an animal of the creation, all the power and wisdom of the Almighty. They represent him as having compelled the Almighty to the direct necessity either of surrendering the whole of the creation to the government and sovereignty of this Satan, or of capitulating for its redemption by coming down upon earth, and exhibiting himself upon a cross in the shape of a man.

"Had the inventors of this story told it the contrary way, that is, had they represented the Almighty as compelling Satan to exhibit himself on a cross in the shape of a snake, as a punishment for his new transgression, the story would have been less absurd, less contradictory. But, instead of this they make the transgressor triumph, and the Almighty fall.

"That many good men have believed this strange fable, and lived very good lives under that belief (for credulity is not a crime) is what I have no doubt of. In the first place, they were educated to believe it, and they would have believed anything else in the same manner. There are also many who have been so enthusiastically enraptured by what they conceived to be the infinite love of God to man, in making a sacrifice of himself, that the vehemence of the idea has forbidden and deterred them from examining into the absurdity and profaneness of the story. The more unnatural anything is, the more is it capable of becoming the object of dismal admiration.

Paine really seems to have been a very interesting and wise man.

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Daldianus on Thu Aug 20, 2009 3:30 am

TigersEyeDowsing wrote:

Well I guess if Jesus was hot, you can consider a personal relationship.

Then you have the cult called "The Family", who have to masturbate or have sex imagining vaginal/anal sex with Jesus so you can be his bride.

Too personal for my tastes. Smile

I've heard about 'The Family' but not about these details ... are you sure about that?

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by MaineCaptain on Thu Aug 20, 2009 3:01 pm

TigersEyeDowsing wrote:

Well I guess if Jesus was hot, you can consider a personal relationship.

Then you have the cult called "The Family", who have to masturbate or have sex imagining vaginal/anal sex with Jesus so you can be his bride.

Too personal for my tastes. Smile
eeewwwww

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by TPaine on Thu Aug 20, 2009 3:50 pm

TigersEyeDowsing wrote:

Well I guess if Jesus was hot, you can consider a personal relationship.

Then you have the cult called "The Family", who have to masturbate or have sex imagining vaginal/anal sex with Jesus so you can be his bride.

Too personal for my tastes. Smile

TED, I assume this is NOT The Family, the Christian Group, headed by Doug Coe that includes many politicians and corporate leaders that has several residences in Northern Virginia and DC such as the C Street House, where such icons of morality as Mark Sanford, Chip Pickering, and John Ensign live or in Sanford's case often visited while a member of Congress.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Family_%28Christian_political_organization%29
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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Daldianus on Thu Aug 20, 2009 3:56 pm

I was wondering the same ... The C-Street Christian 'Family' admires Hitler and Stalin but I don't think they make you masturbate to thoughts about Jesus?

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by TPaine on Thu Aug 20, 2009 7:36 pm

Celsus wrote:I was wondering the same ... The C-Street Christian 'Family' admires Hitler and Stalin but I don't think they make you masturbate to thoughts about Jesus?
Not just Hitler and Stalin, Dald, but Genghis Khan, Mao, and Pol Pot. Doug Coe would be just another Christian Reich wingnut if it weren't for all the politicians that follow his Theocratic message. I suggest you read Jeff Sharlet's book.
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=106115324
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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Thu Aug 20, 2009 8:13 pm

I don't know about them.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Children_of_God_%28cult%29

Loving Jesus


This is a term that TFI members use to describe their intimate, sexual relationship with Jesus. TFI describes the "Loving Jesus" teachings as a radical form of bridal theology.
It is their understanding of the Bible that the followers of Christ are
his bride, called to love and serve him with the fervor of a wife. They
take bridal theology further than mainstream Christians by encouraging
members to imagine that Jesus is having sex with them during sexual intercourse and masturbation.
Male members are encouraged to visualize themselves as women, in order
to avoid a homosexual relationship with Jesus. Additionally, TFI
publications frequently liken prophecy from Jesus to receiving Jesus'
semen, or "golden seeds," as a result of oral or vaginal intercourse.See also: http://www.exfamily.org/index.htm - One of the first large anti-cult movements in the US, brought about by ex members of The Family.

In 1974, David Berg introduced a new proselytization method called
Flirty Fishing (or FFing), in which members were encouraged to initiate
sexual relations with non-members in order to win converts, supporters,
and influential friends. FFing was first practiced by members of Berg's
inner circle starting in 1973 and later introduced to the general
membership. As many members who found these and other practices
questionable left, the movement was purged—those who remained were
expected to endorse FFing. By 1978, due to Berg's success at using the
RNR (see below) to implement FFing, it was widely practiced by female e
members of the group.

Many female members began working for escort agencies
to meet people and this often led to sex being sold to generate sizable
incomes. According to The Family, from 1974 until 1987, members had
sexual contact with 223,989 people while practicing Flirty Fishing.
Flirty Fishing also resulted in the birth of many children, including
Karen Zerby's son, Davidito (a.k.a. Rick Rodriguez). Children born as
result of Flirty Fishing were referred to as "Jesus Babies". According
to data by The Family, by 1981, over 300 "Jesus Babies" had been born.

The practice of Flirty Fishing was officially abandoned in 1987 in fear
of the AIDS epidemic. There is at least one known case of a female
member of the group contracting HIV from a blood transfusion and
eventually dying of AIDS.

The only way to get free of (the devil) and his lies and his
prohibitions and guilt complexes about sex is to get rid of his lies
and his lying propaganda, his anti-sex propaganda, and believe the Lord
and his word and his creation and God's love and his freedom! - that
there is nothing in the world at all wrong with sex as long as it's
practised in love, whatever it is or whoever it's with, no matter who
or what age or what relative or what manner -- and you don't hardly
dare even say these words in private. If the law ever got a hold of
this, they would try to string me up! They would probably lynch me
before I got to the jail! When Paul said "All things are lawful unto
me, but all things are not expedient" (1 COR 6: 12), he was as good as
saying, "I can indulge in any kind of sex I want to, but I've got to
watch out for the System because it's against the law!" (Maria/Zerby:
At least not let'em find out if you do it!)... We are free in privacy,
and that's about all, and we mightn't be free if they discovered what
we do in private!... There are no relationship restrictions or age
limitations in his law of love.... If you hate sex you are one of the
devil's crowd! If you think it's evil, then God and love are evil, for
he created it! Come on, let's love and enjoy it like God does! He loves
it.!
- From "The Devil Hates Sex -- But God Loves It!" by founder David Berg

And so on and so on. :p

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by sacrificialgoddess on Thu Aug 20, 2009 9:31 pm

freaky.

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by MaineCaptain on Thu Aug 20, 2009 9:34 pm

and to add
creepy

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by TPaine on Fri Aug 21, 2009 12:26 am

The idea of masturbating on Jesus, or some guy dressed up as Jesus leaves me totally cold. The Idea of someone in the room with me having sex with young girls makes me want to throw up, then either beat the living crap out of the guy doing it, or taser him right in the stones.
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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Daldianus on Fri Aug 21, 2009 2:44 am

TPaine wrote:
Celsus wrote:I was wondering the same ... The C-Street Christian 'Family' admires Hitler and Stalin but I don't think they make you masturbate to thoughts about Jesus?
Not just Hitler and Stalin, Dald, but Genghis Khan, Mao, and Pol Pot. Doug Coe would be just another Christian Reich wingnut if it weren't for all the politicians that follow his Theocratic message. I suggest you read Jeff Sharlet's book.
http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=106115324

Yeah, I saw interviews with Sharlet on The Daily Show and the Colbert Report. That sounds like a seriously creepy organization ...

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by Daldianus on Fri Aug 21, 2009 2:45 am

TPaine wrote:The idea of masturbating on Jesus, or some guy dressed up as Jesus leaves me totally cold. The Idea of someone in the room with me having sex with young girls makes me want to throw up, then either beat the living crap out of the guy doing it, or taser him right in the stones.

Agreed. They might masturbate to whatever fantasy they want ... as long as they don't make them real and hurt people. And Jesus, unlike little girls, would be able to defend himself with some GodFu I guess?

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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by DeavonReye on Fri Aug 21, 2009 10:40 am

Truly chilling, . . . . and nauseating!!

I can't believe that, with all those emoticons, there isn't ONE of them doing the "throwup" thing! That would have been highly useful for this recent addition to this thread.
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Re: Christianity not a religion but a relationship?

Post by TigersEyeDowsing on Fri Aug 21, 2009 12:05 pm

Haha. The Family is currently popular in Britain, it's sort of had its heyday here in the US.

X-Family has archived all the kiddyporn publications they ran, (with private parts blurred out). As well as hate material and other tripped-out documentation. The Family...they're a lovely bunch.

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