Did the Christian god create evil?

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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by john5180 on Tue Jan 26, 2010 12:00 am

[quote="P_Synthesis"]
john5180 wrote:
P_Synthesis wrote:
I can think of at least two, and a goddess too boot. scratch Let's see now.... scratch There is the war god Yahweh, and there's Lucifer who has been promoted to god-like status by Christians; (by that, I mean he has just as much power as Yahweh affraid ). Then there's the goddess Sophia, (Wisdom, or Chokmah depending on the translation.) Wink If you doubt the existence of Wisdom, grab a Catholic bible and you'll find the Book of Wisdom in their Old Testament version. It goes into pretty good detail how she was there from the creation of the world. Protestants (who believe the bible is completely unaltered and error free) managed to conveniently omit that book from their version of the Holy Writ. Rolling Eyes

John I think we're a little at cross-purposes here. I'm trying to solve the conundrum in the OP. I know very well there are various goddesses in the old testament, from Asherah forward, and yes, lots of other kinds of divinity could be said to be recognized by various Christian schools.

But dash it, you can't get away from the fact that, if you're a believing Christian, 'God' must have created all the other divinities. That leaves the original question unanswered.

If people really want to use 'religious beliefs' and 'logic puzzles' to solve questions like this, you can't get away from it: Believing that a) God created everything in existence, and b) Evil exists, it follows that c) God created evil. He can't 'withdraw and leave evil' because he can only withdraw from something he's created -- there is nothing else. Same with Lucifer, et al.

I agree in principle, as long as we can agree that religion and logic is a contradiction in terms; just the same as using military and intelligence in the same sentence.

Considering the vicarious twists and turns within the frame work of Christianity, and the fact that the bible has been edited and reworded to suit the needs of various early Christian leaders, the authenticity of the Christian scripture is in serious doubt ( in my mind at least.) I see us more in agreement on the subject than in disagreement. I am also very aware that in Judiac belief, Satan is an agent of the Hebrew God. Call him a snitch, or call him the prosecutor, his job is to rat out their god's creation. Not seduce. This new theory composed by Christians gives Satan the same power and authority as their god...... they just fixed it so that in the end, their god comes out on top.

Personally, I don't buy into the belief that the original man sinned, and that this Christian god took it out on every generation that followed.
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by john5180 on Tue Jan 26, 2010 12:13 am

DeavonReye wrote:Yes, I have heard that too. The very story [ficticious story, that is] of Job is an example of this for sure. It is as if god and Satan are playing games with humans and there doesn't seem to be any "can't abide with evil/iniquity" in that story at all. If Satan IS "evil", and "any evil is destroyed in the presence of god", then it would only make sense that Satan wasn't evil. . . . .

Of course, the story [again] is not a real occurance.

The story may be a work of fiction, but it's very telling also, Deavon. In this piece of O/T literature, Satan hasn't been tossed out of heaven with his followers after a fierce battle there, but given succinct authority by the big boss himself to wonder the earth, and report back to him. In business, he would be called the hatchet man. It's at odds with the working principle Christians have used since Paul's ministry. So even if one looks at the Book of Job as a good read, and a moralistic fantasy, at the end of the day, the mission of Satan in the O/T is strikingly different than that given by Christianity.
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by P_Synthesis on Tue Jan 26, 2010 5:52 am

I agree in principle, as long as we can agree that religion and logic is a contradiction in terms; just the same as using military and intelligence in the same sentence.

Oh we're not disagreeing at all... I think your viewpoint is very sensible. All I was saying was, the OP does indeed talk about religion in terms of logic: "Cold is absence of heat so evil is absence of God so therefore..." etc. etc. No, personally I think it doesn't work that way either.

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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by john5180 on Tue Jan 26, 2010 6:57 am

[quote="P_Synthesis"]
I agree in principle, as long as we can agree that religion and logic is a contradiction in terms; just the same as using military and intelligence in the same sentence.

P_Synthesis wrote:Oh we're not disagreeing at all... I think your viewpoint is very sensible.

Thank you.


P_Synthesis wrote:All I was saying was, the OP does indeed talk about religion in terms of logic: "Cold is absence of heat so evil is absence of God so therefore..." etc. etc. No, personally I think it doesn't work that way either.

I think I mentioned that... not as an absence of, but rather the opposite side of the same coin. And even there, it's a relative term. For instance; I am from southwest Louisiana. My summer time mean temp ranges in the 100's, and it a muggy humid heat. A normal cold winter temp for us is diving down into the 40's at night. I was a recruiter for the Army stationed in New Hampshire in the early 80's arriving there from El Paso, TX (we don't need to get into the hot climes there), and quite literally froze my unacclimatized ass off the first winter. My last summer there, my parents came up from Louisiana for a vacation that was supposed to last for a month. They arrived on my birthday... in mid June. They dressed for a Louisiana June, not a New Hampshire one, where at 9:00 in the morning it was still 45 degrees. Unlikely as it seems, the vacation was cut to only a week and a half.

Now... compare this analogy to "sin". What is sinful, or evil to a Christian may not be to another belief system. As a matter of fact, as Gilly pointed out, even the definition of sin ought to be fully explained, and parameters discussed. Certain religious groups define the act of drinking alcohol as a sinful act. Others can point to the bible and state that over indulgence to the point of drunkenness is where sin begins. Taking this into account, someone who is over weight is a sinner, because from an observer's point of view, the obese person is sinning by over eating, where as there could damn well be an underlying cause; metabolic comes racing to mind immediately. In some Christian sects, even being legitimately ill is a sign of sin. One isn't relying on their god for good health strongly enough.

I view evil as an opposite of good. But even then, there can be underlying root causes of what the normal definition of evil might be. There is no doubt that mental dysfunctions can create an evil atmosphere. I seriously doubt anyone would disagree that despots such as Hitler, or Stalin were not in some way mentally off balance. And there are quite a few medical conditions that can cause abhorrent behavior. One not as serious as a psychopath would be Turret's Syndrome. Where the person utters swear words seemingly at random.

To try to confine the parameters of sin, or if it's actually allowed, created or condoned by anyone's god is to narrow the scope of discussion to the point that it isn't even worth the bother.
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by P_Synthesis on Tue Jan 26, 2010 7:24 am

To try to confine the parameters of sin, or if it's actually allowed, created or condoned by anyone's god is to narrow the scope of discussion to the point that it isn't even worth the bother.

That might well be true... only trying to stay on topic!

Yes I agree with you about the two sides of same coin thing, that's why in my first post on the thread I mentioned that cold has to exist if you think temperature exists.... I guess that means that you can rate the moral value of human behaviour in some way. But I agree that human beings themselves are really the measure of this pretty much. Largely a question of conscience.

What I meant with all my qualifications was that I personally don't believe in any of it. That is to say, I don't have any particular belief in God or 'his' manner of creation, nor christ, nor the devil, nor a definite, divinely-mandated and given morality that could be expressed in words. So I was answering this question more as a thought exercise, trying to show (like you I think) that the question itself is basically invalid IME.

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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by john5180 on Tue Jan 26, 2010 8:50 am

To try to confine the parameters of sin, or if it's actually allowed, created or condoned by anyone's god is to narrow the scope of discussion to the point that it isn't even worth the bother.

P_Synthesis wrote:That might well be true... only trying to stay on topic!

That may prove to be difficult what with the varying conceptions of what "sin" is, or even if such a thing exists. I believe we agree on the notion that the concept of evil is opposite of good, and not particularly a god inspired act, or even one that if not inspired, at least condoned. That being said however, you will probably find some here who believe that man is totally at fault through some unknown disobedience to the Christian god, and will try to narrow the playing field to their advantage.

P_Synthesis wrote:Yes I agree with you about the two sides of same coin thing, that's why in my first post on the thread I mentioned that cold has to exist if you think temperature exists.... I guess that means that you can rate the moral value of human behavior in some way. But I agree that human beings themselves are really the measure of this pretty much. Largely a question of conscience.

Understood.

P_Synthesis wrote:What I meant with all my qualifications was that I personally don't believe in any of it. That is to say, I don't have any particular belief in God or 'his' manner of creation, nor christ, nor the devil, nor a definite, divinely-mandated and given morality that could be expressed in words.

Although I have a belief system complete with gods and goddesses, and a creation myth as well, I understand your point of view. I even agree with a large portion of it.

P_Synthesis wrote: So I was answering this question more as a thought exercise, trying to show (like you I think) that the question itself is basically invalid IME.

Just be careful of the mine fields. They can be treacherous.
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by P_Synthesis on Tue Jan 26, 2010 8:55 am

I believe we agree on the notion that the concept of evil is opposite of good, and not particularly a god inspired act, or even one that if not inspired, at least condoned.

Well sorta... to the extent that I personally have any view of this at all, which to be honest, isn't a great extent.

There ought to be a system, when talking about beliefs, which shows you how important the belief is on a scale of 1 to 10. The problem of the existence of evil, for me, is pretty much a 2.

But I can understand that to a Christian it might be very different, so I was trying to think myself into that mindset to see what happened, if you like.

That being said however, you will probably find some here who believe that man is totally at fault through some unknown disobedience to the Christian god, and will try to narrow the playing field to their advantage.

Oh I'm sure you're right, but I don't think I mind so much. Everyone's different after all.


Just be careful of the mine fields. They can be treacherous.

That's interesting! What minefields do you have mind?

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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by DeavonReye on Tue Jan 26, 2010 11:49 am

john5180 wrote:
The story may be a work of fiction, but it's very telling also, Deavon. In this piece of O/T literature, Satan hasn't been tossed out of heaven with his followers after a fierce battle there, but given succinct authority by the big boss himself to wonder the earth, and report back to him. In business, he would be called the hatchet man. It's at odds with the working principle Christians have used since Paul's ministry. So even if one looks at the Book of Job as a good read, and a moralistic fantasy, at the end of the day, the mission of Satan in the O/T is strikingly different than that given by Christianity.

There does seem to be a disconnect in christianity and the role of Satan. It seems as though Satan is "on the payroll".

As for "the moralistic Job story", . . . I used to think of it as moral. . . and the actions of a "loving god", . . . but after listening to a few viewpoints, I realize that such ideals are far from the truth.
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by sacrificialgoddess on Tue Jan 26, 2010 9:31 pm

You know, I would like to get Dave's opinion on this one. He could probably give us a really good idea of the fundamentalist ideas of this topic.

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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Jan 27, 2010 1:23 am

which part? God allowing free choice as proof of His creating evil?

my position on this is that God allowed for the possibility of evil as (pardon the pun) a necessary evil in allowing free choice

or the evolution of the adversary from being God's prosecutor to being God's enemy?

thats more about the evolution of thinking than it is about God
ancient man attributed all things good and bad to the unknown or unseen

If God was in charge than Ha-Satan must work for him
the nobel but doomed rebel of Ebon's faith wasn't really on the radar; though he was foreshadowed in many places from Nimrod to Prometheius
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by DeavonReye on Wed Jan 27, 2010 12:22 pm

Dave, . . . why did god make the same mistake with humans as he did with the angels? They already had "free will". . . . though I use the term loosely.
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Jan 27, 2010 1:19 pm

the concept is that the Angels did not; some left anyway and so are damned eternally with no way back

Man was different: was offered a choice and is offered a choice back

the mystery is WHY?
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by DeavonReye on Wed Jan 27, 2010 2:25 pm

I'm not sure if I am following you as per the angels. Are you saying that the angels did NOT have free will?
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Jan 27, 2010 2:41 pm

they were not given it- they took it by force
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by sacrificialgoddess on Wed Jan 27, 2010 2:47 pm

Okay, Dave. That seriously messes with my head logically. I mean if they didn't have free will, the ability to choose to do what they want when they want, then if they took it by force, would have have been pre-ordained?

Can you see my problem, or are you using the phrase free will differently than I am?

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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Jan 27, 2010 3:47 pm

sacrificialgoddess wrote:Okay, Dave. That seriously messes with my head logically. I mean if they didn't have free will, the ability to choose to do what they want when they want, then if they took it by force, would have have been pre-ordained?

Can you see my problem, or are you using the phrase free will differently than I am?

prolly only slightly

Man was given options
do anything you want except A

Angels were given no options-made their own choices and so were banned from Heaven and called fallen

IOW, failure was implicit in the programming of Humanity-if you do-you will surely die

with the Angels, they acted without instruction that such action would have consequences
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by P_Synthesis on Wed Jan 27, 2010 4:23 pm

I'm starting to agree with sacrificialgoddess here... I don't quite get it now.


Angels were given no options-made their own choices and so were banned from Heaven and called fallen

Yeah but who gave them the ability to make their own choices?

If a God wanted them not to do something, he could have taken away their ability to do it. And if he gave them that ability, being omniscient, must he not have known how they would use it?

Or are you saying that he deliberately did all of that because it was the only way to get fallen angels, which for some reason were needed?

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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by DeavonReye on Wed Jan 27, 2010 5:13 pm

I, TOO, . . . am wondering that, because it either gives us a "god who didn't know the outcome", or a "god who did so on purpose".
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Jan 27, 2010 5:38 pm

P_Synthesis wrote:I'm starting to agree with sacrificialgoddess here... I don't quite get it now.


Angels were given no options-made their own choices and so were banned from Heaven and called fallen

Yeah but who gave them the ability to make their own choices?

If a God wanted them not to do something, he could have taken away their ability to do it. And if he gave them that ability, being omniscient, must he not have known how they would use it?

Or are you saying that he deliberately did all of that because it was the only way to get fallen angels, which for some reason were needed?

I don't think God can prevent choices other than by obscuring the information

and I don't think God is much omni-scient as omni-prescient; He knows all possible choices and lobbies hard to get His choices chosen; but is either self-limited or limited by the time continuing he subjected Himself to
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Jan 27, 2010 5:41 pm

DeavonReye wrote:I, TOO, . . . am wondering that, because it either gives us a "god who didn't know the outcome", or a "god who did so on purpose".

or God who knew all possible outcomes... but either wouldn't or couldn't act beyond a certain point

what I'm trying resolve is why scripture protrays God as lobbying all the time to get His will done

an autocrat doesn't have to whine and beg
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by P_Synthesis on Wed Jan 27, 2010 6:27 pm

and I don't think God is much omni-scient as omni-prescient; He knows all possible choices and lobbies hard to get His choices chosen;

Well it's still interesting to hear a strong Christian say their God might not be omniscient and is not omnipotent. I'm not that experienced with this stuff but I thought the whole idea was that he was both. What do I know... Whistling

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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by DeavonReye on Wed Jan 27, 2010 6:30 pm

I don't know the answer to that, Dave. Any ponderings that you have had about this?

It seems that "free will" is just a product of a sentient being, . . . and a god who doesn't necessarily know future events.
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Jan 27, 2010 6:32 pm

DeavonReye wrote:I don't know the answer to that, Dave. Any ponderings that you have had about this?

It seems that "free will" is just a product of a sentient being, . . . and a god who doesn't necessarily know future events.

like I said I think He knows all possible outcomes; but doesn't know which one we will choose ...hence all the politicking

edit//
or maybe I just read too much Science Fiction


Last edited by Davelaw on Wed Jan 27, 2010 6:33 pm; edited 1 time in total (Reason for editing : clarity)
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by Davelaw on Wed Jan 27, 2010 6:39 pm

P_Synthesis wrote:
and I don't think God is much omni-scient as omni-prescient; He knows all possible choices and lobbies hard to get His choices chosen;

Well it's still interesting to hear a strong Christian say their God might not be omniscient and is not omnipotent. I'm not that experienced with this stuff but I thought the whole idea was that he was both. What do I know... Whistling

triple OMNI is the current state of Christian doctrine; but I'm not aware of scripture that actually states those things the verses used to support triple OMNI could have other interpretations-such as David Psalm about if I go to Heaven you are there/ If I descend to the Grave you are there... it is used as a proof of omni-presence

but He could be saying-God is within/wherever I go/ He goes too besides I'm not a big believer in deriving doctrine from poetry or Chronology
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Re: Did the Christian god create evil?

Post by P_Synthesis on Wed Jan 27, 2010 6:43 pm

Interesting. So why is triple OMNI the doctrine then?

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