Parallels

Author: RoderickSpode ,

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  • RoderickSpode
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    The irony of the "God is evil" franchise threads emanating from this forum, is that whatever the accusation of barbarity is, our society actually practices the same. I'll hit on two major ones.

    Eternal Punishment.

    There are different views on what this means, whether or not punishment is temporal, involves fire, endless black darkness, etc. Ethan made an interesting comment on it that I'd like to hear more of once he (hopefully) returns. But for now, we'll go with the common view that the after life extends eternally, either in the presence of God, or separated.

    Our society understands justice. We understand that certain actions our society considers a threat to the well-being of others should be met with penalties that hopefully will deter the criminal from repeating the infraction again, and warn others against doing the same. So I don't think anyone should be too shocked to find the creator of the universe has a similar sense of justice. That infractions have consequences both in this dimension, and the next.


    Should anyone deserve to be punished eternally?

    Imagine if humans lived eternally on earth (And figured out a way to handle over-population). That the only way a human could die was by unnatural means (natural disaster, fatal accidents, murder, etc.). Other than that our bodies would just continue on. Our hearts would never stop beating.

    What do you think the penalty for murder would be?


    It might be relatively similar to how it is now, but probably more severe. If someone murders someone, they're not taking a life that was already physically dying.


    They would have taken a life that would under normal circumstances, just continued on. Now that never-ending life has just come to an abrupt, and complete end, never to come back again. I think there would be less courtroom shenanigans, and far more scrutinizing to make sure the guilty are properly punished, and the innocent (falsely accused) set free. The obvious penalties would be execution, and quite possibly (eternal) life imprisonment. To some, the latter might be considered worse. The problem with temporary confinement in prison would be that no matter how long the sentence, once the incarcerated is set free, he has all of eternity to make up for time lost. To some, that might making killing someone they hate worth it. And as I stated, the idea behind punishment is not just aimed at the offender, but to everyone else as a hopeful preventative. So, is God at fault for implementing justice within His creation, seeing we do the same?

    And.....it's not that much different in our temporal society. We still end the life of someone when implementing execution. And sentencing some people to life imprisonment, never to see civilian life again.



    Genocide/Infanticide

    One of the common statements made in the various God is evil franchise threads is that God did something aweful for no reason at all (fill in the blank with accusation). And fauxlaw often points out that there was a reason. Which is true. No matter the allegation, there was always a reason. And a valid reason at that.

    In every situation where God commanded the destruction of an entire nation as a for instance, there was plenty of warning ahead of time. We're talking in some cases centuries of warning. We're talking about nations that intended to wipe the Israelite nation off the face of the planet. If a nation has a nuclear bomb pointed right at us, leaving us with only 2 choices to either retaliate which unfortunately means killing women and children, or letting them kill all of us, what would be the better choice?




  • Stephen
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    --> @RoderickSpode
     whatever the accusation of barbarity is, our society actually practices the same. 
    That may have much to do with being created in their image : "Let US make mankind in our image, in our likeness," Gen I;26


    Eternal Punishment [..........................................] involves fire, endless black darkness,[...............]

     Didn't Jesus die to save us from the hell fire and blackness of eternal death?   Didn't god send his only begotten son to suffer a vile and vicious beating and to be hung on a cross by nails driven through his hands and feet to save us from these fires that you mention   Yes, here we are: "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life".   But of course I have to believe in god to get this reward. 

    Christians are haughty people. They believe that  they have the monopoly on morals and integrity and social values simply because they believe in a god. They wouldn't entertain the idea that an atheist can posses any of  these things. 



    Should anyone deserve to be punished eternally?
    See above.




    Genocide/Infanticide

    One of the common statements made in the various God is evil franchise threads is that God did something aweful for no reason at all (fill in the blank with accusation). And fauxlaw often points out that there was a reason. Which is true. No matter the allegation, there was always a reason. And a valid reason at that.


    There can never be a "valid reason" for killing innocent people, no matter how much you scrape the biblical barrel for one. And the whole of your post simply reeks of apologetics and  this is even before one might want scrutinise  the contradictions in your post. I won't bother. 

    And while you are banging on about executions and life imprisonment for murderers et al, keep in mind that the first murderer was given the whole of the planet to wonder and find a new life as his punishment. <<< yet another biblical story that contradicts itself.



  • Marko
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    RoderickSpode:....... whatever the accusation of barbarity is, our society actually practices the same.
    _____________________________________________________________________________________

    One of the primary reasons why many of us would retrospectively view many of God’s actions as seemingly ‘evil’ simply has to do with our gradual movement away from the punishment strategies that were used during biblical times. 
    I would argue that, of all the punishment strategies humans have created and concocted, the biblical punishment strategy couldn’t be much more different to the strategies and conclusions applied in our judicial systems today (which could be a discussion in its own right). 
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________

    RoderickSpode: Our society understands justice. We understand that certain actions our society considers a threat to the well-being of others should be met with penalties that hopefully will deter the criminal from repeating the infraction again, and warn others against doing the same. So I don't think anyone should be too shocked to find the creator of the universe has a similar sense of justice. That infractions have consequences both in this dimension, and the next.
    _________________________________________________________________________________________

    Deterrence is just one of 5 objectives in the concept of punishment. The other four are denunciation, incapacitation, retribution and rehabilitation. Separate punishment systems will place a specific value of importance to each of these punishment objectives, or may even decide to eliminate one or more of them altogether.
    One of the most glaring differences I can see between punishment in biblical times and now is the strong role of retribution in deciding outcomes, in the bible. In contrast, our ‘modern’ judicial system places more importance on things like incapacitation and rehabilitation—while deterrence is a currently debated issue and arguably inefficacious. 
    And so, I disagree that the ’creator of the universe has a similar sense of justice’ to ours. 
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________

    RoderickSpode: Imagine if humans lived eternally on earth (And figured out a way to handle over-population). That the only way a human could die was by unnatural means (natural disaster, fatal accidents, murder, etc.). Other than that our bodies would just continue on. Our hearts would never stop beating.
    What do you think the penalty for murder would be?
    It might be relatively similar to how it is now, but probably more severe. If someone murders someone, they're not taking a life that was already physically dying. 
    _______________________________________________________________________________________________

    While the idea is an interesting one, it doesn’t serve your ultimate attack on the idea that ‘God is evil’. Visibly, the judicial system operates within a temporal framework, but even if it didn’t, you would be hard pressed to prove that any new, atemporal system would have an identical or similar punishment-objective value to those attributed to God. 
    ___________________________________________________________________________________________________

    RoderickSpade:.....the idea behind punishment is not just aimed at the offender, but to everyone else as a hopeful preventative.

    ______________________________________________________________________________________________

    Yes, it is ‘hopeful’ at best. The concept of deterrence has within it the false assumption that humans behave in a rational manner, and that they consider the consequences of their behavior before deciding to commit a crime. This is largely false. 
    _________________________________________________________________________________________________
  • Tyran_Ohrex
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    So I don't think anyone should be too shocked to find the creator of the universe has a similar sense of justice. That infractions have consequences both in this dimension, and the next.
    I think it is not so much a sense of justice.

    We are talking about an invisible master who is completely obscure, unresolved and ambiguous and has only allegedly vaguely and anecdotally communicated with a handful of people more than two thousand years ago.

    And the one infraction that (supposedly) attracts the ultimate penalty of eternal damnation is failing to believe in such a master.

    Why should it be an injustice for somebody to be a pillar of society yet reasonably, rationally and intelligently not believe in God?

    Yet, oh blow me down, if a Christian commits heinous crimes all his life (and, yes it does happen) he gets to go to Heaven so long as he closes his eyes and prays for forgiveness.

    Justice alright!
    Not.
  • Tyran_Ohrex
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    --> @Stephen
    Christians are haughty people. They believe that  they have the monopoly on morals and integrity and social values simply because they believe in a god. They wouldn't entertain the idea that an atheist can posses any of  these things. 
    I thoroughly agree. Where did the Bible get its morals?
    From the societal, cultural and family values of the day when it was written of course just as an atheist or secular society sets morals in tune with the times.

    As society and civilisation (presumably) move forward with the zeitgeist of time so do morals change and the problem with Christianity is that it still adheres to many morals that were valid in a more barbaric and primitive society.
  • fauxlaw
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    Thank you for the mention and reference. Yes, there is purpose in all that God does. And that purpose is not, as Stephen continuously proposes [without pointing to any evidence except that which clearly disputes his claim that God's purpose is the slaughter of innocents]. Here is God's purpose, as He told Moses: "This is my work, and my glory, to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man." [Pearl of Great Price, Moses 1: 39]

    Eternal punishment is not the traditional view of fire and brimstone. It's a popular story, but eternal punishment is far more subtle than that, and described by Death [aka Joe Black, played by Brad Pitt] in the 1998 movie, "Meet Joe Black." It's better than I've ever heard in few words: Joe Black said that punishment "is a room with no doors." A very elegant description, denied of everything, where the real punishment is applied by its resident for the eternal lack of what might have been. We are so cruel to ourselves, I can think of no greater punishment than that. Simple regret, grown into a mind maelstrom of such proportion, the body cannot sustain the overwhelming grief, simply for ignoring that obedience to God, by thinking and acting by His plan of happiness, always was the intended plan for the glorious immortality that is promised and was revealed to Moses.

    As for earthly punishment, i.e., murder, genocide and infanitcide, acts conducted by the wicked, this is adequately spelled out: Genocide is just murder intensified by quantity. Infanticide is murder of children. But murder is an act of preventing the ongoing life of "innocent" victims; innocent only in the sense that they, themselves, are not as evil as their murderers, who have no authority to take life in an attitude of superiority, because they did not give it in the first place. But no one is sinless, i.e., ultimately innocent. God's destruction of the very wicked is not murder in the sense that God is the giver of life, and therefore does not sin in its removal. Rather, it is actually an act of love towards those who are sacrificed by loss of life because in their death, they are prevented from committing the ultimate sin, which is against the Holy Ghost; denial of God when He is face-to-face; denial of the sun shining in one's face, as it were. This is because even seeing God is not a sure knowledge He exists; it is the testimony of the Holy Ghost, burning within one's breast that it is God being seen, and who should be heard. That is the ultimate sin that is unforgivable in this life and the next. Yes, those who have died by such divine intervention, though some are innocent enough to a degree as to be taken while yet in a state of relative innocence compared to the wicked, only lose their mortal lives, but not their eternal lives. Physical death is no longer a barrier; Jesus saw to that. All who die, all who have lived, are guaranteed a resurrection, as did Christ. Even those who sin against the Holy Ghost, denying the face of God, will resurrect. In that, they will ultimately have superiority over Satan and his minions, who will never be so redeemed.
  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @Stephen

     Didn't Jesus die to save us from the hell fire and blackness of eternal death?   Didn't god send his only begotten son to suffer a vile and vicious beating and to be hung on a cross by nails driven through his hands and feet to save us from these fires that you mention   Yes, here we are: "For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life".   But of course I have to believe in god to get this reward. 

    Christians are haughty people. They believe that  they have the monopoly on morals and integrity and social values simply because they believe in a god. They wouldn't entertain the idea that an atheist can posses any of  these things. 

    An atheist can be more moral than a Christian. Jesus' followers consisted of sinners. Jesus actually died that horrible death you referred to for sinners.


    There can never be a "valid reason" for killing innocent people, no matter how much you scrape the biblical barrel for one. And the whole of your post simply reeks of apologetics and  this is even before one might want scrutinise  the contradictions in your post. I won't bother. 


    And while you are banging on about executions and life imprisonment for murderers et al, keep in mind that the first murderer was given the whole of the planet to wonder and
    find a new life as his punishment. <<< yet another biblical story that contradicts itself.

    Are you referring to this person?


    3But Cain said to the LORD, “My punishment is greater than I can bear. 14Behold, this day You have driven me from the face of the earth, and from Your face I will be hidden; I will be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.”…

  • Melcharaz
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    Actually, an athiest cannot be more moral than God's elect. For one thing, morality is based on God, another thing, an athiest cannot abide in truth. 
  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @Marko

    One of the primary reasons why many of us would retrospectively view many of God’s actions as seemingly ‘evil’ simply has to do with our gradual movement away from the punishment strategies that were used during biblical times. 
    I would argue that, of all the punishment strategies humans have created and concocted, the biblical punishment strategy couldn’t be much more different to the strategies and conclusions applied in our judicial systems today (which could be a discussion in its own right). 

    Which punishment strategies during biblical times are you referring to? And what are the biblical punishment strategies you're referring to? I'm asking because I'm not sure if you're talking about Ancient Near East punishment in general, ancient Israelite laws and punishment, or punishment addressed directly from God (Yahweh, Jesus).


    Deterrence is just one of 5 objectives in the concept of punishment. The other four are denunciation, incapacitation, retribution and
    rehabilitation. Separate punishment systems will place a specific value of importance to each of these punishment objectives, or may even decide to eliminate one or more of them altogether.
    One of the most glaring differences I can see between punishment in biblical times and now is the strong role of retribution in deciding outcomes, in the bible. In contrast, our ‘modern’ judicial system places more importance on things like incapacitation and rehabilitation—while deterrence is a currently debated issue and arguably inefficacious. 
    And so, I disagree that the ’creator of the universe has a similar sense of justice’ to ours. 

    Can you give me an example of a punishment in biblical times where retribution decides an outcome?


    While the idea is an interesting one, it doesn’t serve your ultimate attack on the idea that ‘God is evil’. Visibly, the judicial system operates within a temporal framework, but even if it didn’t, you would be hard pressed to prove that any new, atemporal system would have an identical or similar punishment-objective value to those attributed to God. 

    I don't think I've been implying that it's identical. That certainly was not my purpose anyway. One of the factors is that even in an earthly atemporal judicial system, our human knowledge will still have it's limitations in contrast to God's knowledge.

    Let's say a man has a physically beautiful wife, and a very good male best friend whom he often invites over. And their friendship runs continuously as smooth as silk. But let's say the man with the beautiful wife one day is hit by a lightening bolt, which somehow gave him the ability to read people's thoughts. He thus finds out that his best male friend has been entertaining sexual fantasies with his wife. Would you agree this new development could have an impact on their friendship?








  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @Melcharaz
    I understand. I met this more on human terms. The bible refers sometimes to people, even non Jews, as being good, or upstanding. But we know this to be relative to human standards as everyone is a sinner.
  • Tyronnne_Rex
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    --> @Melcharaz
    Actually, an athiest cannot be more moral than God's elect. For one thing, morality is based on God, another thing, an athiest cannot abide in truth. 
    Whilst I can understand that anyone making such an extreme and an invalid statement is doing so out of frustration and attention-seeking, you may wish to descend from your high cloud and accept the fact that religious groups do not hold copyright on morals. Morals are and always have been set by societal standards and family values and change as society moves ahead.

    Many of the "morals based on God"  are nowadays considered barbaric, cruel and highly immoral. For example, the vilification of Gays, anti-abortion, anti-unmarried mothers, and anti-euthanasia. 

    You might want to get your own house (Church) in order next time you decide to take an unwarranted sideswipe at atheists. Oh, and it certainly would help you to do a bit more spelling revision before being allowed to graduate second grade.
  • Melcharaz
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    --> @Tyronnne_Rex
    It seems to me you dont know scripture. Its not arrogance to proclaim truth. But you dont abide in Christ, so what i say means nothing to you. Why waste your words on someone you think is an arrogant fool? Live in your world of lies and do what you want. But we will all be judged for every word and deed. 
  • Melcharaz
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    Ah. I understand. Did you know that the scriptures called certain people good?
    Jesus
    John 7:12 mark 10:18
    Barnabas
    Acts 11:22-24

    Idk if there is another.

  • Tyronnne_Rex
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    --> @Melcharaz
    It seems to me you dont know scripture. Its not arrogance to proclaim truth. But you dont abide in Christ, so what i say means nothing to you. Why waste your words on someone you think is an arrogant fool? Live in your world of lies and do what you want. But we will all be judged for every word and deed. 

    It is arrogant to proclaim "truth"  when one's idea of "the truth" is far removed from reality.

    Nevertheless, your comment was "an athiest cannot abide in truth" which is not only arrogant, it is insolent, insulting and completely without reason.

    I have given you sound advice about getting your own house in order (including basic language skills) before hurling vile vitriol against others.
  • Marko
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    RoderickSpode: Which punishment strategies during biblical times are you referring to? And what are the biblical punishment strategies you're referring to? I'm asking because I'm not sure if you're talking about Ancient Near East punishment in general, ancient Israelite laws and punishment, or punishment addressed directly from God (Yahweh, Jesus).
    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    You specifically alluded towards some similarity between ‘the creator’s sense of justice’ and ours, and I argued that it wasn’t similar, and so God’s punishment strategy is the topic we were both referring to. However, in the interest of the conversation, it could be argued that God’s punishment strategy isn’t completely separate to ‘Israelite law’ practices.  Some might view God’s actions and judgements as precedent—a case that establishes a principle or rule. 
    _______________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    RoderickSpode: Can you give me an example of a punishment in biblical times where retribution decides an outcome?
    _____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Yes I can. But again, I’ll be clear in saying that this is all about God’s devine retribution. 

    Genesis 6 to 9 is a story all about God’s retribution on humanity (apart from Noah and his family/animals). I could also point to the Tower of Babel, the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, the Ten Plagues in Egypt, etc.....

    ____________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    RoderickSpode: don't think I've been implying that it's identical. That certainly was not my purpose anyway. One of the factors is that even in an earthly atemporal judicial system, our human knowledge will still have it's limitations in contrast to God's knowledge.
    __________________________________________________________________________________________________________________

    Right. You implied that it was similar. I argued that it wasn’t close to similar (or identical ofc).
    Yes, I agree that human knowledge will always have its limitations. However, the claim that God’s knowledge has no limitation (which is a topic slightly tangent to the core discussion) is just a claim. Your faith that this claim is correct is insufficient to make this claim so. Furthermore, and if we assumed that your claim is correct, and that it was true that God has limitless knowledge, his knowledge is very limited and restrictive in practice, because God works through man to get his retribution translated into action (man, an entity we both agree is limited and filled with pre-existing biases and inconsistencies).
    In sum, both cases have Man as the limiting factor. 


  • Stephen
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    --> @RoderickSpode

    Jesus actually died that horrible death you referred to for sinners.

    yes and sent by his own Father too.  And this is why your post makes no sense. You see we are all sinners are we not? We inherited sin, did we not? Or are you also  going to deny now millennia of  the church doctrine  AND the bible:

    Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned—Romans 5:12


    Are you referring to this person?
    3But Cain said to the LORD, “My punishment is greater than I can bear. 14Behold, this day You have driven me from the face of the earth, and from Your face I will be hidden; I will be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.”…

    The very same. the worlds first murderer.   I would hardly call giving someone the whole of the earth to roam about and build a new life  on with a wife and living to well over 700 years  an "unbearable punishment". It is not hanging, or life in a 6 x 8 cell is it?

    And who was going to kill him? There were only Cain, Adam and Eve on the planet.  And where did he get his wife? 

  • fauxlaw
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    --> @Stephen
    There were only Cain, Adam and Eve on the planet.  And where did he get his wife? 
    Where do you think. Contrary to your attitude, God does not tell us everything when the consequences tell us well enough where a wife for Cain came from; like an unmentioned sister, cousin, etc. How many generations of children can be born in 700 years? Two or three that are not mentioned.
  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @fauxlaw
    Where do you think. Contrary to your attitude, God does not tell us everything when the consequences tell us well enough where a wife for Cain came from; like an unmentioned sister, cousin, etc. How many generations of children can be born in 700 years? Two or three that are not mentioned.
    The irony is that this makes sense even in a natural evolution scenario.

    But Stephen won't accept your answer, and (probably) will pull the incest card, as an objection.
  • fauxlaw
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    Yes, ironic is the word for it. I happen to believe in a concept of creation/evolution as a continuation of the creative process. After the seventh day, I just don't buy the argument that God retired. He went back to work, and is still working today.

    As for Stephen, it is what it is. He and I, and likely he and you, will never agree, but he'll keep poking.
  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @fauxlaw
    Very true.
  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @Melcharaz
    A couple of others that come to mind are Job, and Cornelius the Roman Centurion. And the parabolic reference to a good Samaritan.
  • RoderickSpode
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    --> @Marko

    Right. You implied that it was similar. I argued that it wasn’t close to similar (or identical ofc).
    Yes, I agree that human knowledge will always have its limitations. However, the claim that God’s knowledge has no limitation (which is a topic slightly tangent to the core discussion) is just a claim. Your faith that this claim is correct is insufficient to make this claim so. Furthermore, and if we assumed that your claim is correct, and that it was true that God has limitless knowledge, his knowledge is very limited and restrictive in practice, because God works through man to get his retribution translated into action (man, an entity we both agree is limited and filled with pre-existing biases and inconsistencies).
    In sum, both cases have Man as the limiting factor. 
    Well, the claim of God having no limitation is biblical. So even if you don't believe in God, or the God of the Bible (and thus the Bible), the allegations made and I'm defending against are not really dependent on whether or not God exists as far as a skeptic is concern.

    Why wouldn't eternal punishment as described in the Bible be similar to life imprisonment? The latter term only presents a time limitation because we have no ultimate control over life and death. However, we do try. The medics try and keep humans alive as much as possible. The judicial system tries to prevent the convicted from taking their own life.

    The intensity of God's punishment is going to logically be more intense. The other extreme is that God's mercy/pardon is more profound.

    For the record, there was a question posed to make a point that you didn't see, or are not inclined to answer.

    Let's say a man has a physically beautiful wife, and a very good male best friend whom he often invites over. And their friendship runs continuously as smooth as silk. But let's say the man with the beautiful wife one day is hit by a lightening bolt, which somehow gave him the ability to read people's thoughts. He thus finds out that his best male friend has been entertaining sexual fantasies with his wife. Would you agree this new development could have an impact on their friendship?

    And if you'd rather not answer, that's fine.
  • Stephen
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    @ FAUXLAW





    There were only Cain, Adam and Eve on the planet.  And where did he get his wife? And who was going to kill him?
    Where do you think. God does not tell us everything  God does not tell us everything when the consequences tell us well enough where a wife for Cain came from; like an unmentioned sister, cousin, etc. How many generations of children can be born in 700 years? Two or three that are not mentioned.

    So you want to throw into the mix what god or the bible doesn't say.  


    And you really should read what is actually being said in that verse.  TRY AGAIN!


    14Behold, this day You have driven me from the face of the earth, and from Your face I will be hidden; I will be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.”…

    Now slowly take in what is being said and when it is being said. Let me know when the penny drops..... if it ever does.

  • RoderickSpode
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    RoderickSpode
    --> @Stephen
    So you want to throw into the mix what god or the bible doesn't say.  


    And you really should read what is actually being said in that verse.  TRY AGAIN!


    14Behold, this day You have driven me from the face of the earth, and from Your face I will be hidden; I will be a fugitive and a wanderer on the earth, and whoever finds me will kill me.”…

    Now slowly take in what is being said and when it is being said. Let me know when the penny drops..... if it ever does.

    There's no reason to read anything here slowly. We know what you're getting at.

    So tell me, why do you think Adam and Eve could not have had children before they had Seth?

    In a fictional story, you could expect every child chronologically to be mentioned in it's story line. The Walton's are not going to sneak a new kid on you without you knowing it. The accounts in Genesis were not written by people trying to cover all bases because someone in the 21st Century named Stephen might read their testimony as they would a fiction.
  • Marko
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    --> @RoderickSpode
    RoderickSpode: Well, the claim of God having no limitation is biblical. So even if you don't believe in God, or the God of the Bible (and thus the Bible), the allegations made and I'm defending against are not really dependent on whether or not God exists as far as a skeptic is concern.
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    That is perfectly acceptable—and I can live with a more historical, secular and possibly theological perspective on the topic.....and I actually encourage it, seeing that almost all discussions that interpret the text directly, between believers and non-believers, ultimately end up in the same place.
    Having said that, I also played the Devil’s Advocate and pointed out  that God’s punishment regime (aided by his limitless knowledge) was hindered and made limited due to Man’s role in the process. 
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    RoderickSpode: why wouldn't eternal punishment as described in the Bible be similar to life imprisonment? The latter term only presents a time limitation because we have no ultimate control over life and death. However, we do try. The medics try and keep humans alive as much as possible. The judicial system tries to prevent the convicted from taking their own life.
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    For starters, the imagery and perception of eternal punishment in the bible is completely different to the reality of life imprisonment in general. Regardless of whether we live in a society where humans can live eternally or not.
    But for the sake of argument, let’s temporarily omit all the differences except the notion of time (because you used the perception of time as a potential marker for similarity).
    In your initial thought experiment, did you assume everyone was an atheist? Because if you didn’t, the notion of eternal vs life imprisonment is different, and life imprisonment for an after-life proponent becomes, regardless of whether he has an ability to live forever or not,  a momentary occurrence. In my defence, your scenario alluded to the possibility of death (killing) and therefore this opens up the concept of after-death, which is itself the primary raison d’etre of religious beliefs. 
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    RoderickSpode: The intensity of God's punishment is going to logically be more intense. The other extreme is that God's mercy/pardon is more profound.
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    Yes. More intense and of a different kind, I would add. 
    For the second part, and to be fair to you, that sounds more like our system, where life imprisonment isn’t necessarily life imprisonment (eternal isn’t necessarily eternal, dependant on the sinners’ subsequent remorse, pardon, etc....).

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    RoderickSpode:: For the record, there was a question posed to make a point that you didn't see, or are not inclined to answer.
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    I understood the point, but I felt that the question would lead down the rabbit road of ultimately arguing whether God literally has unlimited knowledge or not (or even, and god forbid the discussion leads to that, whether he exists or not). But I could equally argue that, in many instances, having an unlimited data on everything could be to the detriment of those that wield it.
    My points still stands that, because God requires his knowledge to be handed down to man (at some point in the process), and that man is inherently fallible, God’s punishment regime must also be fallible.