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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 1: Sun Nov 11, 2018 9:45 pm
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Christians are Revolting - Sean Lauren

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This thread will debate the book Christians are Revolting: An Infidel's Progress, by Sean Lauren.

We will go through the book one chapter at a time and discuss the contents of each chapter. I anticipate we'll spend several days on each chapter and then move on to the next one. Please avoid jumping ahead, but you're free to discuss previous chapters (for those that join late). We'll end the debate with each person giving a general overview of the book. The thread will then be closed.

If you'd like to participate, sign up here.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 2: Mon Nov 12, 2018 4:47 pm
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Ch. 1 - Are most Christians filled with hate and bloodlust?

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The author stated in Chapter 1, paragraph 6: "So many Christians are filled with hate, malice, bloodlust, lies, deceit, racism, sexism, and a plethora of other nasty words that leave other Christians scratching their heads."

I think this kind of condemnation against "most Christians" goes beyond the pale and I wonder how he came to that conclusion against most Christians. He offers nothing to back up such claims. Especially disturbing is "malice and bloodlust." This kind of attack without evidence should not go unchallenged.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 3: Mon Nov 12, 2018 6:57 pm
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Re: Ch. 1 - Are most Christians filled with hate and bloodlu

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[Replying to post 2 by amortalman]

That opens up a HUGE can of worms right off the bat Smile. "So many" is not equivalent to "most". I know plenty of good Christians, but even still, "most Christians I know" (not to say most in general, but perhaps) are the very ones who promote war (bloodlust), are intolerant of sexual disposition or gender identity despite the science behind it (which is very hateful whether they realize it or not), will not recognize the plight of the downtrodden (minorities and women), and straight up lie to themselves and others to continue holding their views or to strip followers of their cash. Not all Christians hold all of these characteristics, but I find that "most people" are "Christian" and yet so many are rude as freaking heck and that our country is polarized more than ever with love being a distant unknown concept. Which righty loves the lefty anymore? It fails the other way as well, of course, but that doesn't negate the point that many Christians are so far from the mark of Christ's call to love that it leaves one wondering what the heck happened to his message. This is not a truly Christian country despite the percentage of people claiming it. As a Christian, I believed most Christians were false and that our country was mostly non-Christian because so few actually took up the true calling of Christ.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 4: Mon Nov 12, 2018 8:35 pm
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Ch. 1 - An Infidel's Progress

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The book is an autobiography detailing the author's journey to Christianty and to atheism. He notes the primary audience of the book is for Christians.

"I write this mostly for Christians since it is their faith which has been corrupted and which I wish to see restored."

I suspect though more atheists would read the book than Christians.

"At the risk of reducing my credibility to Christians and sounding even more like a heretic, I must reveal that I became an atheist before I could finish this book."

Not too many Christians will read a book from a "heretic" and one who denies the faith. However, atheists would enjoy reading a book to affirm their negative opinions of Christianity.

It seems the primary thesis of the book is this:

"I believed it then and I believe it now that Christianity has lost what made it most beautiful and has traded it in for a disunified mess of opinions and the blind followings of Molech, Baal, and Mammon."

I would not disagree with this, even as a Christian. Like many religions, Christianity has become more a cultural religion and is far from its original intent.

This is an interesting situation: "I became an outcast via the pure intention of being a devoted follower of Christ." The first part of the book will detail his devotion.

"The main purpose of the early chapters is to show my heart-felt investment, my collaboration with Christian groups, my seeking God throughout, and to provide a background of where I have been."

BTW, in the table of contents, it would've been nice if the chapter numbers were included in the print version. The Kindle version however does have them.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 5: Mon Nov 12, 2018 8:47 pm
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Re: Ch. 1 - Are most Christians filled with hate and bloodlu

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amortalman wrote:

The author stated in Chapter 1, paragraph 6: "So many Christians are filled with hate, malice, bloodlust, lies, deceit, racism, sexism, and a plethora of other nasty words that leave other Christians scratching their heads."

I think this kind of condemnation against "most Christians" goes beyond the pale and I wonder how he came to that conclusion against most Christians. He offers nothing to back up such claims. Especially disturbing is "malice and bloodlust." This kind of attack without evidence should not go unchallenged.


He does say that this leaves other Christians scratching their heads. So I don't understand why anyone would consider this to be an "attack" against Christians unless they consider themselves to be in the former group rather than the latter.

What troubles me is why the Christians who object to this type of behavior held up in the name of Christianity aren't calling out their fellow Christians and Evangelists who do support those types of hatred.

I agree with Sean that this is far removed from the teachings of Jesus. However, I do have to disagree with Sean that Christianity was ever based solely on the teachings of Jesus. There are plenty of scriptures that support the hatred and malice exhibited by many Christians. I even often point out Matthew 5:18 myself that has Jesus supporting every jot and tittle of the Old Testament writings. That's where most of the hatred and malice comes from anyway. In fact, as a Christian I had my fair share of other Christians shoving Matthew 5:18 in my face to justify every jot and tittle of the Old Testament. So I know this is used to justify anything in the Old Testament.

In defense of the Christians who do use Christianity for hatred and malice I can certainly understand how they can justify this behavior using the overall Biblical Canon of Christianity. This of course, doesn't mean that I condone such behavior, I disavow the whole religion actually. None the less I can see how the Biblical Canon can be used to support such ignorance.

Unlike Sean, I see Christianity as being about far more than Christ. In fact, I hold that Christ is actually nothing if not the Son of Yahweh, and therefore to believe in Christ is to believe in Yahweh, and that's where most of the ignorance comes from.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 6: Mon Nov 12, 2018 9:36 pm
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Re: Ch. 1 - Are most Christians filled with hate and bloodlu

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ElCodeMonkey wrote:

[Replying to post 2 by amortalman]

Quote:
That opens up a HUGE can of worms right off the bat Smile. "So many" is not equivalent to "most".


My mistake. I failed to quote the whole paragraph (I can't copy and paste from my Kindle).

The passage goes on to say: "They remember Jesus preaching a message of love, peace, and support for the downtrodden yet most Christians, who primarily support Trump for president, are focused on just the opposite." (emphasis mine)

So if I am now understanding you correctly what you're saying is that most Christians are focused on the opposite of love, peace, and support for the downtrodden? My question was and is, do you have verifiable evidence that most Christians feel that way? Not trying to be critical on this point, I would just like to know.

Quote:
I know plenty of good Christians, but even still, "most Christians I know" (not to say most in general, but perhaps) are the very ones who promote war (bloodlust),


I can't argue with your assertion that "most Christians (you) know" are, in your opinion, terrible. I do take issue with the assertion that most Christians are like that. That was certainly not my experience during my years as a Christian.

Why am I defending them when I'm no longer a believer? A noble answer is that I'm interested in the truth of the matter, and that's partly true. But since there is so much division in America right now I'm just sick of all the hateful comments being thrown around on both sides. You blast Christians for their hate but you turn around and expose your own hatred for them. You stir up even more division with such hateful comments about Christians being bloodthirsty and "promoting" war. That's nonsense. Did you also think our country's entry into WW II was caused by being bloodthirsty? There are often good reasons for going to war where, unfortunately, blood will flow. I think ISIS is a group which fits your label of bloodthirsty.

Quote:
...are intolerant of sexual disposition or gender identity despite the science behind it (which is very hateful whether they realize it or not),...


It is just as intolerant for those on the opposite side to denigrate people who have different beliefs.

Quote:
will not recognize the plight of the downtrodden (minorities and women),


I think the majority of women in America would be shocked to be called downtrodden. And I think minorities in this country no longer fit the "downtrodden" label either. All the evangelical churches I was a part of cared deeply for the poor. They all had some kind of ministry to those less fortunate providing clothes and food and counseling. Time and resources, and many prayers were given. Hardly a group who didn't recognize their plight.

Quote:
...and straight up lie to themselves and others to continue holding their views or to strip followers of their cash.


WOW! Such hateful remarks. I think you would be hard pressed to show that this is the rule rather than the exception.

Quote:
Not all Christians hold all of these characteristics, but I find that "most people" are "Christian" and yet so many are rude as freaking heck and that our country is polarized more than ever with love being a distant unknown concept...


I assume that when you said "Christian" instead of Christian without the quotation marks you meant that they only call themselves Christian. they are Christian in name only, they are false Christians as you say below. So you can't blame what non-Christians do on genuine Christians. And I'm not saying that the so-called carnal Christians don't behave badly also.

Quote:
...Which righty loves the lefty anymore?


Is that a reference to political liberals?

It fails the other way as well, of course, but that doesn't negate the point that many Christians are so far from the mark of Christ's call to love that it leaves one wondering what the heck happened to his message. This is not a truly Christian country despite the percentage of people claiming it. As a Christian, I believed most Christians were false and that our country was mostly non-Christian because so few actually took up the true calling of Christ.


Look, I agree with what you just said. But in the paragraph that I quoted, you made no distinction between genuine Christians and false Christians. Maybe you feel that most genuine Christians fit the descriptions you gave. I certainly hope not. And I would hate for your book and this discussion to turn political.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 7: Mon Nov 12, 2018 9:38 pm
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Re: Ch. 1 - An Infidel's Progress

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otseng wrote:

Not too many Christians will read a book from a "heretic" and one who denies the faith. However, atheists would enjoy reading a book to affirm their negative opinions of Christianity.


I agree. Not only this, but Sean is focusing solely on how Jesus taught people to behave. Christianity is not based on how Jesus taught people to behave. Chrsitianity is based on the idea that Jesus was the "lamb of God" who supposedly died to pay the wages of sin for anyone who accepts Jesus as their "Savior".

That's a far cry from just being about how Jesus taught people to behave. It also seems to totally ignore the fact that the entire Old Testament is part of this religion as well, and none of that can be ignored especially in light of Matthew 5:18 where Jesus supports every jot and tittle of it.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 8: Mon Nov 12, 2018 9:50 pm
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Re: Ch. 1 - Are most Christians filled with hate and bloodlu

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amortalman wrote:

And I would hate for your book and this discussion to turn political.


It's already political. He's already suggested that supporting Donald Trump is "anti_Christian", in his view. I don't think he said it in those words, but he certainly seemed to be implying it.

I wholeheartedly agree with this point as well. IMHO, Trump's views and politics are about as anti-Christ as they can be. I can't understand how any Christian can support Trump. And I'm not sure if that's a separate topic since it in this book.

From the book:
Quote:
More and more, especially with the unintended help of Donald Trump, Christians are beginning to realize that their faith is broken.


and,...
Quote:
They remember Jesus preaching a message of love, peace, and support for the down-trodden yet most Christians, who primarily support Trump for president, are focused on just the opposite.


So it appears to me that he's already taken a political position that supporting Trump's policies is "anti-Christian".

Again, I agree. Very Happy

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 9: Mon Nov 12, 2018 11:27 pm
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"I will walk you through my own life, how I came to my conclusions, and I will show myself to have been seeking God truly and with all my strength."

"I did not seek my own way and I did not desire to be different-- it just so happened that I became an outcast via the pure intention of being a devoted follower of Christ. If indeed such pursuit of God is as powerful and useful as often professed, then surely my conclusions must count for something. If a similar striving leads others to different conclusions, then what good is seeking? It would then seem more likely that our conclusions are derived from our own imaginings guiding our biases."

---

I have nothing to debate just yet. I posted these quotes because they stuck out to me as something to examine as the book progresses. I think Otseng did a good job outlining the key message the book aims to give.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 10: Tue Nov 13, 2018 8:26 am
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Re: Ch. 1 - Are most Christians filled with hate and bloodlu

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[Replying to post 6 by amortalman]

I think you make a fair point that my verbage is too encompassing, not distinguished enough, and stronger word-choice than necessary. I intended for it to be an intriguing introduction to engender a desire to understand these viewpoint from what follows, but it instead likely puts people off without knowing which camp of "Christian" they belong to "in my eyes." I will likely correct for this in a future revision.

I would like to clarify, however, that the book is not intended to denigrate Christians even if it might seem I do from lack of controlled linguistics. The true intent of the story is to reveal a Christianity that is indeed beautiful and worth following which I found via the attacks and brutality of current Christianity. I have found it hard to separate "look at this potential greatness" from "look at this currenty atrocity." With greater experience now, I would attempt to focus on the former far more than the latter, but I'm still not sure how easy it is to recognize a need for the fixes without recognizing what's broken. That's the dilemma which I believe is getting lost in the first chapter, but maybe I should leave that up to the story to demonstrate rather than simply spouting it early on.

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