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Zzyzx
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PostPosted: Mon Sep 02, 2019 9:14 pm  Ex-Christians are powerful voices against Christianity Reply with quote

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Ex-Christians are powerful voices against Christianity

Since they were once Believers (perhaps very devout), they have insider knowledge of dogma, doctrine, practices, rituals, and literature. No amount of ‘you weren’t really Christian’ can discredit what they experienced and what they say. ‘Your cult wasn’t REAL Christianity (like mine is)’ rings exceedingly hollow and self-serving.

Apostates came to realize (often after decades) that they were duped and may be angry about the time and devotion that they wasted chasing an illusion. Some may offer assistance and/or encouragement for others to question what they are told to believe – and find a way out.

Several very capable Non-Theist debaters here are prime examples of escaped Christians. Others post at www.ExChristian.net and www.ClergyProject.org. Others of us never drank the Kool-Aid but have experience dealing with Christians who attempt to push their beliefs onto others with social pressure, emotional appeals, threats, promises, and/or legislation.
Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 31: Thu Oct 31, 2019 10:11 pm
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Hi, Jack.

Maybe I came to incorrect conclusions about your original post, I don't know, but I'm not going to continue discussing that, but I do want to address this one thing:

Realworldjack wrote:

[Replying to post 23 by OnceConvinced]

Quote:
I have a failing hope that people here might be able to convince me to believe again.


DO WHAT? I'm sorry, and I am not trying to be offensive, but I cannot for the life of me understand this? Because you see, if I were to be able to choose what it is I believe, I will assure you that Christianity would not be on the list. I mean, who would want to believe it?


Seriously? You can't see how one who spends nearly 40 years of their life on something might want to believe it was true?

Here is a list of reaons I'd love to believe again:
- Knowing that I hadn't wasted all those years on a fantasy.
- The belief that you will live forever in paradise.
- Comfort in believing a god has everything under control
- Belief that there is something higher you can cast your cares upon.
- Belief that God will protect you.
- Belief that everything is part of some higher purpose, no matter what difficulties you face.
- Belief that problems are being solved because of your prayers.
- Belief that there is power in the name of Jesus
- God's grace
- God's love
- Respect and trust by other Christians.
- Being seen as somone who is knowledgeable in scripture.
- Being seen as wise by other Christians.
- Being part of a positive, caring community of like minded people. (ok I can get that one elsewhere but it was a lot of fun and I have a lot of good memories.)

All these above things I lost when I lost my faith. They'd be great to have back. Don't you think they'd be good to have?

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 32: Fri Nov 01, 2019 6:31 am
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[Replying to post 24 by Zzyzx]

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If you don’t think OC is a powerful voice


Which I never said!

Quote:
why put effort into attempting to discredit him


Which I never did!

The only thing I said concerning "Onceconvinced" was,

realworldjack wrote:
I will point out that I have not had to many conversations with "OC" but I do believe I did in fact get into some of these things with him, when I have had the opportunity.


That's it! That is all I had to say about "OC". If you took anything else I had to say as being about him, then I apologize if it was my fault, but I do not see how? What I cite above is all I intended concerning, "OC". You can take that to be the truth, or, you can call me a liar.

Quote:
and make yourself look rather small in the process?


One thing folks need to understand is, I do not intend to make myself, "look small"? But if I do, I am really not concerned with how I may look. In other words, I am not here in an attempt to impress any one? And, I really do not understand, anyone whose goal this would be? Well? Maybe I do get it, but it is not appealing to me.

Quote:
Many seem to lose sight of the fact that these debates are viewed by many people (714 visitors in the past 24 hours – and some threads receive tens of thousands of views).


And this is where the misunderstanding came in, because I never think about that. In other words, I am only thinking about the conversation I am having with the individual. In other words, I am not concerned with an audience, attempting to impress, or convince them of anything.

Quote:
Readers decide what is convincing to THEM.


Again, I am not thinking about that. However, now that you have me thinking about that, it should tell the audience something to know that we have those who are indeed, playing to the audience.

Quote:
If a poster is not considering the readers, WHO is he addressing? Himself? His own ego? His choir?


Well? What about the other member being addressed? In other words, this is the only thing I am thinking about at the time. The person I am addressing, along with the subject matter, and even then it is not my attempt to even convince them of anything.

Quote:
How does one seek truth on an internet debate Forum about virgin birth, reanimation of corpses, talking donkeys and snakes, humanity tracing to two people – one magically made from dust and the other magically made from a rib, worldwide flood ‘to the tops of mountains’?

Those who are seeking truth would be well advised to consult actual experts in the field (read their publications) – legitimate historians rather than pretend / wannabe anonymous posters on an internet forum; actual astrophysicists rather than people speculating about origin of the universe; qualified geneticists rather than theologians and apologists when seeking information about evolution.

When seeking truth I darn sure don’t place great confidence in those who learn about the universe and its contents / processes by reading ancient texts written by people who didn’t know where the sun went at night; learn botany and zoology at the level of ignorance typical of thousands of years ago; learn Earth science from those who are convinced the Earth was poofed into existence perhaps a few thousand years ago and was flooded ‘to the tops of mountains’; learn human biology from those who think all humans descended from two people and who talk of long-dead humans coming back to life.

What ‘truth’ is to be learned from those who claim to know about invisible, undetectable, supernatural entities – among thousands proposed by and worshiped by humans – but who can provide no verifiable evidence that any of their claims and stories are anything more than products of human imagination?


GOOD GRIEF!? When I talked about, "what the truth may be" I was not talking about the answers to all the world's problems, nor any of these many other things you are bringing into the conversation now? Rather, I thought we were talking about, "ex-Christians being powerful voices against Christianity"?

Next, I am not even saying we can, "get to the truth of this matter". Rather, I am comparing those who are simply playing to an audience, as opposed to those who are unconcerned with such things, and are simply attempting to get to the truth of the matter being discussed at the time.

Quote:
I agree. Has it been determined which churches, if any, are concerned about truth rather than customers (sometimes called parishioners)? Determined by whom? On what authority?


Again, GOOD GRIEF!? You do not need an "authority" to determine if a particular Church is out attempting to recruit new members? Nor do you need an "authority" to determine if a Church is using manipulative methods such as what has been called, "the alter call" in order to play on the emotion of folks? In other words, believe it or not, there are Churches who are unconcerned as to whether they ever gain new members, and when, and if they do, they do not simply allow them to join, but rather attempt to ensure this person truly understands the decision they are making.

Quote:
I disagree. It appears as though most become Christians in childhood – before judgment and discernment have developed for them.


Agreed! Which again, makes my point, in that these folks did not use their own mind to become Christian, but rather depended on those before them, who could have very well depended on those before them, and then you have a whole lot of Christians who do not really use the mind, and since there was not a whole lot of thinking going on in order to become a Christian, it may not take a whole lot of thinking to talk them out.

Quote:
Once indoctrinated, it is difficult for people to reject what they have been convinced to believe. Discussions of the difficulty are readily available on www.ExChristian.net, www.ClergyProject.org and similar sites. Let’s not hand wave away what is said by people involved.


Right! And as I have said in a previous post, I am skeptical, when I hear the word indoctrination being used. I am sure, and in fact I know, there are Churches who use such methods, but I live in the "Bible Belt" where we have Churches on every corner, and most all the folks I know were exposed to these Churches, and a good many of these folks no longer attend Church, and they are not under the impression that they were ever expected to accept what was being taught, uncritically, and they do not, and did not suffer, with making the decision to no longer attend Church.

Again, I want to be clear, that I know there are folks who suffer these sort of things, because I have been involved in canceling some, who have been through this sort of thing, and shared tears with them, as they have shared their story with me. However, there seem to be those who are under the impression that anyone who was raised in a Church, must, and had to be, taught to accept what was being taught uncritically, and this is simply not the case.

Quote:
See above. Readers decide.


And again, I will say, "if that is what you are into, go right ahead". The audience is all yours!

Quote:
I truly appreciate Apologists who are unconcerned about how their posts are perceived – while professing to search for ‘truth’ but whose posts demonstrate attempts to justify their own beliefs while denigrating opponents.

Carry on


My friend, all we were doing was to discuss as to whether "ex-Christians would be powerful voices against Christianity", and all I did was to say, I would like to ask these ex-Christians a few questions before I decide? I guess I was expected to accept this as a fact, uncritically? Or, it is just that it is what the audience perceives which counts, because it is the audience who decides if the argument is convincing to them.

And you see, this is where I became confused, because I was under the impression we were talking about if the actual arguments would indeed be legitimate. But it seems as though I am wrong, and all we are concerned about is what the audience may think, and with this being the case, I am simply not interested in such things.

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 33: Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:11 am
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Tcg wrote:

OnceConvinced wrote:


It seems you don't understand how indoctrination works and how difficult it is to break free from that indoctrination.



You are right of course. Only those who have broken away permanently can understand it. Taking a brief vacation from one's indoctrination and then running back to it like a child to its security blanket doesn't qualify.


Tcg




And here is that word, "indoctrination" again? And I wonder if it is being used loosely? In other words, what do you mean by, "indoctrination"? Do you mean, being taught to accept things uncritically? If so, then I was not "indoctrinated". Do you mean something like, "brainwashing"? Then, I was not "indoctrinated". If however you mean, being taught about Christianity, then I would have been "indoctrinated".

But here are some things you are failing to consider. First, I have rejected the theology I was exposed to as a child, and that "security blanket" has been gone for years.

Next, I have not darkened the door of a Church in years. So then, what sort of "security blanket" do I really have?

You see, there are those who are under the impression that when, and if they discover that anything they may have been taught as a child would be false, they then throw the whole thing out, while there are others who attempt to "weed through the garbage".

The fact of the matter is, you are not really dealing with the facts, by simply assuming, why I hold the position I have, and it seems to be a way in which to shelter oneself from having to actually think about the facts. In other words, "I have my "security blanket" of assuming that everyone would think, and act as I do, did, or have, which causes me to "FEEL" much better about what I have rejected, and I really do not have to get involved in a whole lot of thinking about it".

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 34: Fri Nov 01, 2019 10:01 am
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OnceConvinced wrote:

Hi, Jack.

Maybe I came to incorrect conclusions about your original post, I don't know, but I'm not going to continue discussing that, but I do want to address this one thing:

Realworldjack wrote:

[Replying to post 23 by OnceConvinced]

Quote:
I have a failing hope that people here might be able to convince me to believe again.


DO WHAT? I'm sorry, and I am not trying to be offensive, but I cannot for the life of me understand this? Because you see, if I were to be able to choose what it is I believe, I will assure you that Christianity would not be on the list. I mean, who would want to believe it?


Seriously? You can't see how one who spends nearly 40 years of their life on something might want to believe it was true?

Here is a list of reaons I'd love to believe again:
- Knowing that I hadn't wasted all those years on a fantasy.
- The belief that you will live forever in paradise.
- Comfort in believing a god has everything under control
- Belief that there is something higher you can cast your cares upon.
- Belief that God will protect you.
- Belief that everything is part of some higher purpose, no matter what difficulties you face.
- Belief that problems are being solved because of your prayers.
- Belief that there is power in the name of Jesus
- God's grace
- God's love
- Respect and trust by other Christians.
- Being seen as somone who is knowledgeable in scripture.
- Being seen as wise by other Christians.
- Being part of a positive, caring community of like minded people. (ok I can get that one elsewhere but it was a lot of fun and I have a lot of good memories.)

All these above things I lost when I lost my faith. They'd be great to have back. Don't you think they'd be good to have?




Many folks think that I am "unfeeling" because I simply say what is on my mind, without attempting to tone it down. But this is not the case. I simply choose not to tone it down, in order to ensure that I am not "watering it down", so as to not be misunderstood. I say this to begin with, because what I am about to say, could be taken as being offensive, but this is not intended.

No, I am sorry, I do not understand what you are saying, and I really cannot wrap my mind around it, because I cannot get my mind to think in this way. None of the things on your list, would make any difference at all, if Christianity would be false. Moreover, none of the things on your list, would be worth believing the many other things about Christianity, that I cannot imagine anyone wanting to believe?

I guess what I am saying is, if I were going to wish those things on your list, I would go ahead and wish the other things away that I would rather not believe, and come up with my own, "wish list"? In other words, simply wishing those things on your list, is not really equivalent to, really wishing Christianity could be true, but rather only certain parts of it.

If you are truly convinced Christianity is false, then go ahead an embrace it. If you are convinced, dive straight in, and do not look back, hoping, and wishing for something you can no longer believe.

If you are not convinced Christianity is false, then you need to admit this to yourself. The thing is, you may not have rejected Christianity at all, but have simply rejected what you were exposed to? There is, a tremendous difference!

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Post BBCode URL - Right click and save to clipboard to use later in post Post 35: Fri Nov 01, 2019 11:48 am
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[Replying to post 26 by JJ50]

Why sure I do.

The story of the Garden of Eden is very, very short. But it is filled with information. It covers man's birth, how he can fail and what to expect if he fails

It shows God giving humans a command.
It also shows humans disobeying God - WILLINGLY
Yes, Eve didn't forget. The serpent proved Eve sinned willingly.
The first thing the serpent said was to remind Eve in the form of a question what
Gods law was. "Has God said not to....? Eve replied by saying what God said they could
eat and what they couldn't eat. She also stated the consequences if she disobeyed.
She proved to God that she sinned willingly

This story shows how the adversary works to get people to sin
This story also shows how people in turn cause other people to sin

Eve's mistake was listening to another voice
Adams mistake was not examining what he was being fed

We also get to witness judgement day. AND...
It shows us that we can't sin and hide it from God.
That trying to hide your sins only serves to prove you knew right from wrong but chose to do what Gid said not to do
It shows people Blaming everyone blaming everyone but themself. Even blaming God
Adam said the woman YOU GAVE ME, she gave it to me
Eve said the serpent beguiled her
As soon as they knew they did wrong they tried to hide it from God. Adam said he covered himself because he was naked. Adam was ashamed. So Gid asked:. How did you know you were naked? Plipl paraphrase:. How do you know you have sinned? Who told you this? It was the adversary. The serpent did.
HAD THE ADVERSAY NOT DONE WHAT HE DID THEY WOULD NOT HAVE BEEN GUILTY OF SINNING WILLFULLY.
THIS STORY TELLS US HOW MAN WILL DO ON JUDGEMENT DAY IF HE THINKS HE CAN ACKNOWLEDGE GODS LAW AND NOT ABIDE BY IT. HOW YOU CANT HIDE BEHIND ANYTHING. AND IF YOU TRY TO HIDE YOU CONDEMN YOURSELF

Christians know the laws of God. They are attached to their new testament. Christians carry around the Hebrew Scriptures and willfully ignore the laws. They sin willingly and like Eve know theur are consequences. Yet they disobey anyway and hide behind Jesus so that Gid won't see their sins. We can see how this will work. God will ask why they Jesus be is between them. Why are they hiding behind Jesus? Because they KNOW they have done wrong. AND WHO TOLD THEM THEY WERE WRONG?

(PAY CLOSE ATTENTION HERE). Who got Christians to tell God they willingly sinned? Jesus didn't save them. He gave them no excuse for their sins. By believing in Jesus you admit the law stands

Here ..listen to Jesus...he'll tell you all about it:

I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloke for their sin. He that hateth me hateth my Father also. If I had not done among them the works which none other man did, they had not had sin: but now have they both seen and hated both me and my Father

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