Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

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HansKecht
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Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #1

Post by HansKecht »

I can't find a religion that makes sense to me, or that has enough proof to get me into it. Would it be wrong of me to make my own?

shnarkle
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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #81

Post by shnarkle »

Divine Insight wrote:
shnarkle wrote: Perhaps you might want to study this passage in more depth as nowhere does it state that Thomas thrust, poked, or even peered into the wounds of Jesus. Jesus simply tells Thomas to do this. I can say the same thing, it doesn't mean somebody is actually going to do this. Nowhere in the text does it state that Thomas actually thrust his fingers into the wounds. In fact, what it actually states is that Thomas is no longer remaining in unbelief. It doesn't state how he came to believe. One can just as easily assume that he came to believe, not by sight, or plunging fingers into wounds, but by faith.
[25] The other disciples therefore said unto him, We have seen the Lord. But he said unto them, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe.
Well, the story certainly suggests that Thomas would not believe until he actually did this.
No doubt that statement is meant to be seen in stark contrast to the fact that what he now see's before him no longer requires such scrutiny. The text should be reason enough to come to this conclusion as the statement isn't repeated as something that was carried out. It simply points to him dropping to his knees and professing his faith in Christ as his God.
And besides, if Jesus was resurrected as a "Ghost" then why would there need to be a missing physical body in the first place?
As I've mentioned before, I don't think this is what the narratives are portraying in the first place. There is no "ghost", but instead the realization that "where two or three are gathered" he is there present with them. Thomas understands that death cannot separate any of them from the presence of Christ, and the presence of Christ isn't about holes in wrists, feet, or sides. The physical body isn't who Christ is, therefore looking for a body will not give you Christ. Look at your reflection in a mirror. Is that who you are? Maybe it is, but for some people identifying with a body isn't enough to explain who they are.

[27] Then saith he to Thomas, reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.

This strongly suggests that Jesus is standing right in front of Thomas holding out his hands for Thomas to exam and feel.
It strongly suggests that Thomas' former ideas are no longer applicable as he now see's that the wounds of Christ aren't who he is. These things no longer define who or what it means to see Christ, or experience his real presence in their lives. This is the case of those who are experiencing persecution in their own lives. These narratives reinforce this reality for them.
Also, as I have already stated I always argue how utterly silly this story is. I would expect Jesus to say to Thomas, "Why would you expect me to have those old wounds, the Heavenly Father has raised me from the dead and has made me whole again".

I mean seriously. What sense does it even make that a God would magically raise his Son from a grave and not even bother to physical heal his body in the process?
You seem to be making my point for me.

Whether the doubting Thomas actually placed his fingers in the wounds is irrelevant. The scriptures clearly have Jesus OFFERING for Thomas to do just that.

So whether Thomas actually did it or not is irrelevant.
Circular reasoning works for some people. I'm encouraged that you can now see that Thomas actually didn't poke his fingers into any wounds. You're making progress.

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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #82

Post by Divine Insight »

shnarkle wrote: As I've mentioned before, I don't think this is what the narratives are portraying in the first place. There is no "ghost", but instead the realization that "where two or three are gathered" he is there present with them. Thomas understands that death cannot separate any of them from the presence of Christ, and the presence of Christ isn't about holes in wrists, feet, or sides. The physical body isn't who Christ is, therefore looking for a body will not give you Christ. Look at your reflection in a mirror. Is that who you are? Maybe it is, but for some people identifying with a body isn't enough to explain who they are.
How in the world you expect to twist the Biblical stories into such nonsense is beyond me. All I can say is that your arguments here are not at all convincing. To the contrary, all I see is absolute denial of what the actual stories have to say.
shnarkle wrote: It strongly suggests that Thomas' former ideas are no longer applicable as he now see's that the wounds of Christ aren't who he is. These things no longer define who or what it means to see Christ, or experience his real presence in their lives. This is the case of those who are experiencing persecution in their own lives. These narratives reinforce this reality for them.
Sorry, but once again what you are attempting to suggest here is simply not in harmony with what the actual Gospels have to say.

You'll need to write up your own fairy tale. The fairy tale that you would like for the Bible to be doesn't match up with what's actually written in the Bible.
shnarkle wrote:
Also, as I have already stated I always argue how utterly silly this story is. I would expect Jesus to say to Thomas, "Why would you expect me to have those old wounds, the Heavenly Father has raised me from the dead and has made me whole again".

I mean seriously. What sense does it even make that a God would magically raise his Son from a grave and not even bother to physical heal his body in the process?
You seem to be making my point for me.
Oh really? So you agree that the Gospels are indeed silly as they are actually written?

I'm always pleased when people agree with me in these debates. :D
shnarkle wrote:
Whether the doubting Thomas actually placed his fingers in the wounds is irrelevant. The scriptures clearly have Jesus OFFERING for Thomas to do just that.

So whether Thomas actually did it or not is irrelevant.
Circular reasoning works for some people. I'm encouraged that you can now see that Thomas actually didn't poke his fingers into any wounds. You're making progress.
And what's your point again? There there never was any actual Christ telling Thomas to places his fingers into his wounds?

You don't have any reasoning at all to back up your scenario. In fact, you're not even making any sense at all.

Here are my questions to you:

1. Was Jesus actually resurrected at all, or was that just a metaphor for something else?
2. If it was just a metaphor, then are you saying there never was any actual missing body from any actual tomb?
3. How about an actual Jesus? Are you suggesting that the character "Jesus" himself never actually existed and was never anything more than a fairy tale or metaphor?
4. If you claim there was an actual Jesus, and an actual missing body, and an actual "resurrection", then is it your claim that Jesus rose in a physical body, or as a spiritual ghost?
5. If he rose as a spiritual ghost, then why the need for the missing physical body?
6. If he rose as a physical body, then how can you not see that everything you've been arguing for fails?

It seems to me that you have a very long way to go to get your story to match up with what the Bible actually claims happened.
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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #83

Post by shnarkle »

Divine Insight wrote:
shnarkle wrote: As I've mentioned before, I don't think this is what the narratives are portraying in the first place. There is no "ghost", but instead the realization that "where two or three are gathered" he is there present with them. Thomas understands that death cannot separate any of them from the presence of Christ, and the presence of Christ isn't about holes in wrists, feet, or sides. The physical body isn't who Christ is, therefore looking for a body will not give you Christ. Look at your reflection in a mirror. Is that who you are? Maybe it is, but for some people identifying with a body isn't enough to explain who they are.
How in the world you expect to twist the Biblical stories into such nonsense is beyond me. All I can say is that your arguments here are not at all convincing. To the contrary, all I see is absolute denial of what the actual stories have to say.
shnarkle wrote: It strongly suggests that Thomas' former ideas are no longer applicable as he now see's that the wounds of Christ aren't who he is. These things no longer define who or what it means to see Christ, or experience his real presence in their lives. This is the case of those who are experiencing persecution in their own lives. These narratives reinforce this reality for them.
Sorry, but once again what you are attempting to suggest here is simply not in harmony with what the actual Gospels have to say.

You'll need to write up your own fairy tale. The fairy tale that you would like for the Bible to be doesn't match up with what's actually written in the Bible.
shnarkle wrote:
Also, as I have already stated I always argue how utterly silly this story is. I would expect Jesus to say to Thomas, "Why would you expect me to have those old wounds, the Heavenly Father has raised me from the dead and has made me whole again".

I mean seriously. What sense does it even make that a God would magically raise his Son from a grave and not even bother to physical heal his body in the process?
You seem to be making my point for me.
Oh really? So you agree that the Gospels are indeed silly as they are actually written?

I'm always pleased when people agree with me in these debates. :D
shnarkle wrote:
Whether the doubting Thomas actually placed his fingers in the wounds is irrelevant. The scriptures clearly have Jesus OFFERING for Thomas to do just that.

So whether Thomas actually did it or not is irrelevant.
Circular reasoning works for some people. I'm encouraged that you can now see that Thomas actually didn't poke his fingers into any wounds. You're making progress.
And what's your point again? There there never was any actual Christ telling Thomas to places his fingers into his wounds?

You don't have any reasoning at all to back up your scenario. In fact, you're not even making any sense at all.

Here are my questions to you:

1. Was Jesus actually resurrected at all, or was that just a metaphor for something else?
2. If it was just a metaphor, then are you saying there never was any actual missing body from any actual tomb?
3. How about an actual Jesus? Are you suggesting that the character "Jesus" himself never actually existed and was never anything more than a fairy tale or metaphor?
4. If you claim there was an actual Jesus, and an actual missing body, and an actual "resurrection", then is it your claim that Jesus rose in a physical body, or as a spiritual ghost?
5. If he rose as a spiritual ghost, then why the need for the missing physical body?
6. If he rose as a physical body, then how can you not see that everything you've been arguing for fails?

It seems to me that you have a very long way to go to get your story to match up with what the Bible actually claims happened.
First you insist that Thomas poked his fingers into wounds, then when I point out that you are mistaken you decide that it is irrelevant whether he did or not.

I've already addressed your questions repeatedly. In a nutshell, those who prefer to look at these narratives as historical literal facts, or fairy tales are welcome to that interpretation. Some people are incapable of seeing anything more than a fundamentalist perspective, while others prefer this perspective because it has no explanatory power. I don't see much point in arguing with a perspective that has no explanatory power. From what you've presented so far, this seems to be your perspective. I would have to agree that it is silly to discuss it from that perspective. You aren't advancing the discussion, much less an argument that I can see, except to propose that as a topic of discussion it is pointless. I think this may be the only thing you have ever presented that made perfect sense.

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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #84

Post by Divine Insight »

shnarkle wrote: First you insist that Thomas poked his fingers into wounds, then when I point out that you are mistaken you decide that it is irrelevant whether he did or not.
False. I showed that the Gospels stories proclaim that he did. After all, he claimed he would not believe until he did it. And then Jesus instructs him to do it. Why should YOU then proclaim that he didn't actually do it?

Who are you to REWRITE the Biblical stories? :-k

shnarkle wrote: I've already addressed your questions repeatedly. In a nutshell, those who prefer to look at these narratives as historical literal facts, or fairy tales are welcome to that interpretation. Some people are incapable of seeing anything more than a fundamentalist perspective, while others prefer this perspective because it has no explanatory power. I don't see much point in arguing with a perspective that has no explanatory power. From what you've presented so far, this seems to be your perspective. I would have to agree that it is silly to discuss it from that perspective. You aren't advancing the discussion, much less an argument that I can see, except to propose that as a topic of discussion it is pointless. I think this may be the only thing you have ever presented that made perfect sense.
So then are you openly confessing that you are "Creating your own religion" here as this thread suggests? :-k

And no, I' don't see where you have answered my questions UNLESS you do indeed hold the following to be true:

1. Jesus was never anything more than a metaphor in a story.
2. There was no actual, living, crucified, dead, or resurrected Jesus.
3. There was no actual dead body or tomb. And therefore no body was actually missing.
4. Thomas never saw any actual "risen" Jesus, either physically, or as a ghost. He simply came to realize that his buddies are just imagining Jesus to exist in their minds as a metaphor.
5. Or perhaps you are holding that there never was any actual Thomas either and the Thomas character was just yet another metaphorical part of the whole fable?

Do I have your position correct?

If not, please clarify.
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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #85

Post by Hector Barbosa »

[Replying to post 75 by shnarkle]
I only assumed you had a rudimentary familiarity with the texts under consideration. You had mentioned more than a passing exposure to Buddhism, the bible, etc. My statement was an allusion to a concept that they all refer to, e.g. "let God be true and all men liars"; "the Tao that is spoken is not the Tao"; "he that knows says nothing, he that speaks knows nothing:, etc. I was quite literally saying that I misspoke, therefore what I said was a lie.
Sure, but being familiar with a text is not the same as agreeing with its contents.
I do not consider myself a theist or atheist as I have pointed out, so I do not agree with a lot of the concepts made to argue either position, that is what I was saying and I thought you would understand that theist or atheist reasoning do not apply to me if I am not a theist or atheist.

I don't reason like they do, in fact I find their reasoning bias and contradictory which is why I am not convinced by either, and is 100% sure I am neither.
Having said this, I do think that when people take offence to statements that literally have nothing to do with them, but everything to do with my own mistakes, then it is time to move on. I'm not labelling you in any way. I have never made any assumptions as to anything in your background. I point of fact, I have no interest in your background. My only interest is in the validity of your arguments.
I agree with you completely on the reasoning, and that was exactly why I asked the question about if you were calling me a liar or not, to speed up a debate I could see where it was heading :)

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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #86

Post by shnarkle »

Divine Insight wrote:
shnarkle wrote: First you insist that Thomas poked his fingers into wounds, then when I point out that you are mistaken you decide that it is irrelevant whether he did or not.
False.
Sorry, but you plainly claimed that it was irrelevant whether he poked his fingers into wounds. Here's what you said "Whether the doubting Thomas actually placed his fingers in the wounds is irrelevant. The scriptures clearly have Jesus OFFERING for Thomas to do just that.

So whether Thomas actually did it or not is irrelevant."

To some degree I could almost agree, and the fact that nowhere does the text claim that he actually did poke into any wounds seems to reinforce that idea. You are simply reading this into the text based solely on his claim that he wouldn't believe unless he did. The text indicates that simply seeing Jesus and hearing his voice was enough for Thomas to drop to his knees. This is what is explicitly stated, and this is what the author is pointing out to the reader (e.g. "blessed are those who believe without seeing...etc.") The text doesn't state: "blessed are those who believe without poking their fingers into open wounds...etc." That's something you're reading into the text. Again, you're perfectly welcome to read whatever you want into the text to suit your purposes which at this point aren't exactly clear.

I showed that the Gospels stories proclaim that he did.
No, you didn't. What you have shown is that you believe this to be irrelevant. I agree. When someone is adamant about the text claiming this poking took place while also holding that whether it took place or not it is irrelevant, then you are clearly arguing with yourself. Arguing both sides of some point that you have repeatedly stated is nothing more than a fairy tale and basically insane isn't much of a point, much less an argument. What point are we supposed to arrive at here, other than the fact that you are literally arguing with yourself about something that you clearly see is an insane fairy tale? I don't agree with your premises. If I did, I wouldn't be bothering with this discussion in the first place. At this point, the only excuse I have is boredom. I have better things to do, I'm just too lazy to do them right now.
After all, he claimed he would not believe until he did it. And then Jesus instructs him to do it. Why should YOU then proclaim that he didn't actually do it?
Quite simply because nowhere in the text does it state that he poked into any wounds. You posted the text yourself for all to see. Anyone can see that the text is silent on whether he poked into any wounds. You have assumed that he must have done this based on his claim. You're welcome to your assumptions. Assumptions prove nothing. I make a number of assumptions as well, they also don't prove a thing.
Who are you to REWRITE the Biblical stories? :-k
Frankly, I can rewrite the biblical stories any way I choose. For purposes of this discussion, I have gone with the same text you posted, and proven that there is nothing to suggest that Thomas needed to poke into any wounds. Whatever he saw, it was plainly enough for him to drop to his knees and worship.

shnarkle wrote: I've already addressed your questions repeatedly. In a nutshell, those who prefer to look at these narratives as historical literal facts, or fairy tales are welcome to that interpretation. Some people are incapable of seeing anything more than a fundamentalist perspective, while others prefer this perspective because it has no explanatory power. I don't see much point in arguing with a perspective that has no explanatory power. From what you've presented so far, this seems to be your perspective. I would have to agree that it is silly to discuss it from that perspective. You aren't advancing the discussion, much less an argument that I can see, except to propose that as a topic of discussion it is pointless. I think this may be the only thing you have ever presented that made perfect sense.
So then are you openly confessing that you are "Creating your own religion" here as this thread suggests? :-k
No, although I don't see any problem with people creating their own religions as I've already pointed out. Evidently, you have forgotten what my position is in the first place. What I have pointed out is that religions do serve a number of purposes, and some are able to fit in with those purposes. I see religion as a mediator to question my own assumptions; my own myths. I also see that I can question their myths as well. My interest is in seeing reality through reality, and when I present my view, this is my testimony, my confession. In some ways, what I see has similarities to what others have claimed as well, it corresponds to the confessions of others that are now presented as doctrines and dogmas of the church. Mine may vary in some particulars, which if these variations were to catch on, could possibly become the birth of a new church or religion. This is how new religions or denominations begin. Not that this is my aim or goal. I'm not interested in starting a new religion. I think this is probably more in line with what I would recommend for the person who started this thread, i.e. that they look at reality as they see it and testify to what they see, rather than what they've been told.
And no, I' don't see where you have answered my questions UNLESS you do indeed hold the following to be true:
I don't see your questions having any relevance to this thread. I've made my views clear, and you don't seem to be able to comprehend them. I'm not saying you're stupid. I'm not always able to communicate my point to everyone; some people get it while others don't. My previous posts answer all of these questions. I'm not interested in repeating myself, and frankly, whether you understand me correctly or not is not something I'm all that concerned with anymore. I'm not speaking cryptically, so I have no idea why you are unable to understand what I'm saying. The best way to clarify your questions would be for you to reread what I've already posted, or perhaps to ask someone else to explain it to you. Someone else may be better able to help you understand if it's really that important to you in the first place.

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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #87

Post by Divine Insight »

shnarkle wrote: Frankly, I can rewrite the biblical stories any way I choose.
Well, there you go.

No one is stopping you from doing that. :D

However, you shouldn't expect anyone to take your views as serious biblical theology when you do that. Especially in terms of reflecting what the Bible original had to say.

As I have already pointed out, anything less than Christ being resurrected in an actual physical body that was missing from a tomb would require a major rewriting of the Bible. If you are willing to do that, then more power to you. But then what you are presenting is not Biblical theology, but rather what you are presenting is your own personal dream of how you wish the Bible had actually been written.

We can all do that. ;)

But when we do that we need to realize that our new story is not the Biblical story.

That's all.
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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #88

Post by shnarkle »

Divine Insight wrote:
shnarkle wrote: Frankly, I can rewrite the biblical stories any way I choose.
Well, there you go.

No one is stopping you from doing that. :D

However, you shouldn't expect anyone to take your views as serious biblical theology when you do that. Especially in terms of reflecting what the Bible original had to say.
I don't have any expectations, but ironically there are plenty of people who not only take what I'm saying seriously, they agree with what I've presented. This is not to say that they necessarily would confess this as their own perspective, but that they could easily accept it as something they see as logically consistent with not just the biblical text, but reality itself. There are also theologians who hold similar positions to mine; albeit not in all particulars. In terms of the what the bible says, there are no reputable theologians that hold your position, e.g. "insane fairy tales" so my views are considerably closer to serious biblical theology; not that I'm attempting to align my views with serious theologians, it just works out that way sometimes. This case being a prime example.
As I have already pointed out, anything less than Christ being resurrected in an actual physical body that was missing from a tomb would require a major rewriting of the Bible.
Hardly, as I've just presented plenty of evidence that requires no rewriting whatsoever, especially given the historical context within the liturgies of the early church. Your own example of the serpent in the garden is proof enough. The word used in the Hebrew is "nachash" and means "shining one; burning one" and is used of snakes because of the burning caused by their bite. In other words, the origin of the word has nothing to do with serpents. Moreover, biblical writers confirm that this nachash is none other than the celestial being satan. So there is no need to rewrite the text at all to see that what some see as a snake is really Lucifer "a shining one".

When Moses is asked to construct a "seraph", the text states that he built a "nachash of bronze" showing that they are synonymous terms. Again, no rewriting is necessary. The definitions of the words are enough to convey the true meanings. For those who prefer to look at the story from a child's perspective, I see no problem with that either. To each his own. It still has some explanatory power as some quaint reason for the absence of limbs on snakes. I'm not a big fan of snakes either so I can relate.

Again, the example of Thomas is also proof enough that no rewrite is necessary as the text plainly states that Thomas fell to his knees at the sight and words of Christ. There is no mention of "blessed are those who believe without having to poke their fingers into wounds", so your theory is without merit.


These biblical stories are introduced at a young age by observant Jews and Christians and they are not meant to be viewed with an exhaustive understanding at that age. For example, when the text says that Adam "knew" his wife, parents aren't going to go into any significant details as to what this actually is referring to. The meaning of this word will grow as the child grows into maturity. As a child grows into an adult they see what the other meanings of this word are, and then understand that Adam had carnal knowledge of Eve. Some prefer to see it just simply as Adam and Eve getting to know each other. This is fine, and no rewrite is necessary for each to see it according to their own understanding or preference of these terms.

To then conclude that the text is relying on only one definition is to ignore not only the usage of words, but literally thousands of years of in depth scholarship and theology from the Sages of Judaism as well as the Fathers of Christianity. You can ignore that if you choose, but then you're just sparring with your own shadow.

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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #89

Post by Divine Insight »

shnarkle wrote: In terms of the what the bible says, there are no reputable theologians that hold your position, e.g. "insane fairy tales" so my views are considerably closer to serious biblical theology; not that I'm attempting to align my views with serious theologians, it just works out that way sometimes. This case being a prime example.
You aren't being realistic, and you are also falsely misrepresenting my position. My opinion that the Bible is a collection of mostly insane fairy tales is just my way of describing the final observation.

You are wrong to say that there are no reputable theologians that hold my position. To the contrary, my position is that the Bible does indeed describe a physical body being missing from an actual tomb and that the Gospels do indeed describe Jesus physically raising from the dead. And the vast majority of reputable theologians will agree that this is indeed the Biblical story.

What they may not agree with is that this particular story is an "insane fairy tale". But that's totally irrelevant.

I don't think there are too many reputable theologians who would agree with your claim that the Gospels do not have Jesus physically raising from the dead. They would need to reject the empty tomb story which most theologians aren't prepared to toss out.
shnarkle wrote: Hardly, as I've just presented plenty of evidence that requires no rewriting whatsoever, especially given the historical context within the liturgies of the early church. Your own example of the serpent in the garden is proof enough.
Now you are changing the focus. We were originally talking about whether or not Jesus rose from a grave in physical form or just as a spirit. As far as the "serpent" in the garden of Eden is concerned, I make not claims about what that serpent was. However, the Book of Revelations makes it pretty clear that the serpent in the garden of Eden and "Satan" are one in the same.

My main point on the story of Adam and Eve is that the story has a totally innocent Eve supposedly being "beguiled" by a serpent. What the serpent is make not different. The self-contradiction here is that an innocent Eve that had been beguiled would not be responsible for the fall anyway. So that story fails no matter what you imagine the serpent to be.
shnarkle wrote: Again, the example of Thomas is also proof enough that no rewrite is necessary as the text plainly states that Thomas fell to his knees at the sight and words of Christ. There is no mention of "blessed are those who believe without having to poke their fingers into wounds", so your theory is without merit.
You are ignoring the facts. Jesus instructed Thomas to feel his wounds. Therefore it doesn't matter whether Thomas actually did it or not.

John 20:
[27] Then saith he to Thomas, reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.


Why would you think that Thomas did not do what Jesus asked of him?

And why do you think Jesus would even bother to ask him to do this if Jesus was just some sort of ghost that has no physical body to be touched?

Your arguments don't hold water.
shnarkle wrote: These biblical stories are introduced at a young age by observant Jews and Christians and they are not meant to be viewed with an exhaustive understanding at that age. For example, when the text says that Adam "knew" his wife, parents aren't going to go into any significant details as to what this actually is referring to.
This doesn't help your case at all. Even a child can see that Jesus was confirming his physical resurrection to Thomas.

And besides, you need to toss out the hold empty tomb story to make a case for your ideas anyway. Far more than any child would do to be sure. In fact, even a child would probably ask you why there needed to be an empty tomb and a missing body if Jesus didn't actually rise from the dead?

Children often catch these kinds of details themselves. :D
shnarkle wrote: To then conclude that the text is relying on only one definition is to ignore not only the usage of words, but literally thousands of years of in depth scholarship and theology from the Sages of Judaism as well as the Fathers of Christianity. You can ignore that if you choose, but then you're just sparring with your own shadow.
You are the one who is ignoring the entire empty tomb story.

Every accusation you have made against me is absolute nonsense. In fact, the vast majority of Christian theologians would reject you claim that Jesus did not raise from the dead in a physical body that was missing from the tomb.

Why would there even be a story about a missing body at the tomb if the story was going to be that Jesus only rose from the dead as a ghost? No missing physical body would be required for that.

In fact, I have often argued that the story would have made more sense if Jesus actually returned as a ghost. But that's clearly NOT the Biblical story.

And since we can't go back and rewrite it, we're stuck with a physically resurrected Jesus to argue for or again, whether we like it or not.

You seem to be in total denial of the empty tomb and missing body story. How can you just sweep that under the carpet and pretend that Christian theologians are going to be in agreement with your views?

You're not being reasonable at all. But in this particular thread you are permitted to create your own religion. :D

It's just not going to fly in any real discussions of Christian theology.
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shnarkle
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Re: Do you think it's wrong for people to create a religion?

Post #90

Post by shnarkle »

[Replying to post 88 by Divine Insight]
Divine Insight wrote:
shnarkle wrote: In terms of the what the bible says, there are no reputable theologians that hold your position, e.g. "insane fairy tales" so my views are considerably closer to serious biblical theology; not that I'm attempting to align my views with serious theologians, it just works out that way sometimes. This case being a prime example.
You aren't being realistic,...
You're presenting situations that aren't realistic in the first place. The fact that I'm responding to them is unrealistic, and goes without saying. However, I also can see how pointing out the obvious to oneself can be beneficial in helping one to get a grasp on reality.
... and you are also falsely misrepresenting my position.
You are presenting mutually exclusive opposing views and arguing both positions. You don't even seem to know what you're position is in the first place. Thomas poked his fingers into wounds....it is irrelevant whether he poked fingers into wounds or not. You keep bouncing back and forth from one to the other. I'm having no problems following both of your positions. I can also see that they don't make any sense whatsoever. They're quite simple, and simply incoherent.
My opinion that the Bible is a collection of mostly insane fairy tales is just my way of describing the final observation.
A distinction with no effective difference, especially to what I pointed out.
You are wrong to say that there are no reputable theologians that hold my position.
You don't count as a reputable theologian.
To the contrary, my position is that the Bible does indeed describe a physical body being missing from an actual tomb...
Sorry, but fairy tales or myths don't describe actual bodies or tombs. Make up your mind. Is it a myth, a fairy tale, or what? Pick one, and stick with it. Then when you've decided which you would like to retain you can work on developing an argument.
and that the Gospels do indeed describe Jesus physically raising from the dead.
I think you may be imagining things again. There is no description of Jesus raising. The narratives simply present a "risen" Jesus. This is actually something that I've never considered until this moment. This seems to be actually reinforcing what I'm suggesting, i.e. the author isn't presenting an actual raising of Jesus from the dead. This is literally true. You just inadvertently pointed out what's really going on, again.
And the vast majority of reputable theologians will agree that this is indeed the Biblical story.
Again, I don't deny the numerous interpretations of scripture; I'll even go along with your fragmented perspectives just for fun, but no reputable theologian holds schizophrenic views of the text.
What they may not agree with is that this particular story is an "insane fairy tale". But that's totally irrelevant.
The fact that you hold two completely opposing views simultaneously, e.g. "insane fairy tales/literal body and tomb" is precisely why you can't possibly be taken seriously by any reputable theologian.
I don't think there are too many reputable theologians who would agree with your claim that the Gospels do not have Jesus physically raising from the dead.
The bibliographies of numerous books would provide a wall of text. Visit any half way decent library if you don't believe me.
They would need to reject the empty tomb story which most theologians aren't prepared to toss out.
And I'm not suggesting that they need to toss any of it out. I'm simply presenting a view that provides a different priority. I don't have to deny the physical resurrection. I simply point out that there are themes that transcend mere historical events. I've listed a number of examples from the text to illustrate this.
shnarkle wrote: Hardly, as I've just presented plenty of evidence that requires no rewriting whatsoever, especially given the historical context within the liturgies of the early church. Your own example of the serpent in the garden is proof enough.
Now you are changing the focus.
No, I'm going with the flow of the numerous changes that you continually introduce into the discussion. There really is no focus as you can't seem to focus on one single position in the first place, nor can you remember my position, even with regards to the OP.
We were originally talking about whether or not Jesus rose from a grave in physical form or just as a spirit.
No, this is just one of many items that you have chosen to bring up.
As far as the "serpent" in the garden of Eden is concerned, I make not claims about what that serpent was.
You presented it as a serpent.
However, the Book of Revelations makes it pretty clear that the serpent in the garden of Eden and "Satan" are one in the same.
And yet you chose to ignore that in your repeated examples.
My main point on the story of Adam and Eve is that the story has a totally innocent Eve supposedly being "beguiled" by a serpent.
Yeah, we got that, again.
What the serpent is make not different.
Perhaps it might be getting a little late? What you say make not different.
The self-contradiction here is that an innocent Eve that had been beguiled would not be responsible for the fall anyway.
So this assertion is somehow supposed to be self evident I presume. How about elaborating on what you mean by "self-contradiction"? How about letting us all in on this theory that innocent people who are deceived into breaking laws are not responsible for their actions? This is what is known in debating circles as presenting an argument.
So that story fails no matter what you imagine the serpent to be.
Well, I'd just as soon see an argument before making that determination. The only thing imagined here is that you presented an argument; and it wasn't a very imaginative argument either.
shnarkle wrote: Again, the example of Thomas is also proof enough that no rewrite is necessary as the text plainly states that Thomas fell to his knees at the sight and words of Christ. There is no mention of "blessed are those who believe without having to poke their fingers into wounds", so your theory is without merit.
You are ignoring the facts. Jesus instructed Thomas to feel his wounds.
I haven't ignored that simple fact from the beginning. In fact, I've pointed out that Jesus' instruction is not an act by Thomas. The two are two completely different things. One is a statement by Jesus, and the other is an action by Thomas. The first is explicitly stated while the latter is in no way presented anywhere in any of the texts. See the difference? The instructions by Christ are instructions by Christ. Instructions by Christ are not actions by Thomas. Instructions by one person are not actions by another. Just because one could follow from the other doesn't mean one did follow from the other, especially given that the text makes no mention of this action following from the other. What is explicitly stated is "belief".
Therefore it doesn't matter whether Thomas actually did it or not.
Great, your back to pointing out that your whole position is irrelevant again. I wholeheartedly agree.

John 20:
[27] Then saith he to Thomas, reach hither thy finger, and behold my hands; and reach hither thy hand, and thrust it into my side: and be not faithless, but believing.

Why would you think that Thomas did not do what Jesus asked of him?
Let me guess, because it doesn't matter whether Thomas actually did it or not? Yep, that's your position.
And why do you think Jesus would even bother to ask him to do this if Jesus was just some sort of ghost that has no physical body to be touched?
Oh, I know this one too. Because this is just an insane fairy tale, right? It isn't difficult to keep up with your opposing positions; it's just pointless.
Your arguments don't hold water.
They're not my arguments, they're yours.
shnarkle wrote: These biblical stories are introduced at a young age by observant Jews and Christians and they are not meant to be viewed with an exhaustive understanding at that age. For example, when the text says that Adam "knew" his wife, parents aren't going to go into any significant details as to what this actually is referring to.
This doesn't help your case at all. Even a child can see that Jesus was confirming his physical resurrection to Thomas.
You've failed to follow my argument. I don't deny they could see that. I seriously doubt they would have any trouble following my argument as well; which doesn't negate their position.
And besides, you need to toss out the hold empty tomb story to make a case for your ideas anyway.
The "hold empty tomb story"? Okay, so what are you talking about now?
Far more than any child would do to be sure.
Evidently your positions are so self evident to you that complete thoughts have become redundant.
In fact, even a child would probably ask you why there needed to be an empty tomb and a missing body if Jesus didn't actually rise from the dead?
And a child would be able to understand my response as well.
Children often catch these kinds of details themselves. :D
So true! Children are pretty sharp these days. They're pretty good at following arguments as well; it's the old timers that have trouble keeping up. They just can't seem to see past their own preconceived ideas; or in this case, sets of opposing ideas.
shnarkle wrote: To then conclude that the text is relying on only one definition is to ignore not only the usage of words, but literally thousands of years of in depth scholarship and theology from the Sages of Judaism as well as the Fathers of Christianity. You can ignore that if you choose, but then you're just sparring with your own shadow.
You are the one who is ignoring the entire empty tomb story.
If you were able to follow my argument you would see that I'm pointing directly to the story of the empty tomb.
Every accusation you have made against me is absolute nonsense.
No doubt accusations are not only nonsense, but a waste of time. Actually now that I think of it, you actually aren't arguing with yourself as you aren't presenting arguments to begin with; you're just making assertions and then making contradictory assertions, e.g. Thomas pokes fingers into wounds/ it's irrelevant whether he did or not; literal body raised/fairy tales etc. These aren't accusations; they're quite accurate observations.
In fact, the vast majority of Christian theologians would reject you claim that Jesus did not raise from the dead in a physical body that was missing from the tomb.
Yeah, you already said that. I think it might have even been in this post.
Why would there even be a story about a missing body at the tomb if the story was going to be that Jesus only rose from the dead as a ghost?
Cause it's a fairy tale, remember? Yep, you are repeating yourself, again.
No missing physical body would be required for that.
Makes a better story though. The story is so good that it's been with us for over two thousand years, and people are still reading it. In fact, it's so awesome that people who think it's just silly nonsense can't stop talking about it. Stories that drive people to compulsively rant about how silly they are, are stories that demand to be reckoned with.
In fact, I have often argued that the story would have made more sense if Jesus actually returned as a ghost. But that's clearly NOT the Biblical story.
Perhaps. It works either way.

You seem to be in total denial of the empty tomb and missing body story.
You seem to be in total denial of the many posts which I've posted to the contrary.
How can you just sweep that under the carpet and pretend that Christian theologians are going to be in agreement with your views?
How can you continue to ignore what I've already posted which is in complete agreement with Christian theology?
You're not being reasonable at all. But in this particular thread you are permitted to create your own religion. :D

It's just not going to fly in any real discussions of Christian theology.
Fortunately, real discussions of Christian theology have proven the flight worthiness of my position repeatedly. Moreover, my position flies even better against those who aren't sure what their positions are to begin with. or perhaps more accurately; which mutually exclusive position is more attractive at any given moment.

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