What’s Wrong with Christianity?

October 9, 2016
whats-wrong-with-christianity

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Topic Notes

You CAN love Jesus and bacon at the same time!
article: 10 Reasons Christianity is Wrong
It is Absurd: When someone comes to us with an extravagant claim the most common reason we may discount the claim is because, to put it curtly, we find it absurd. The reason why the majority of people don’t believe in Scientology, reincarnation, Mormonism, Greek Gods, etc. is not because they have extensively researched the historicity and veracity of the claims, it is because they don’t believe such things happen in the world. In other words, common sense tells us that when someone claims the absurd almost anything is more likely to be the case (i.e. they are lying, they are delusional, they are relying on misinformation) than for the absurdity to be real. Men do not miraculously heal the sick, raise the dead, cure the blind, and rise from the grave. The claims of Christianity are prima facie absurd. The burden of proof is on them.

  • Just because something seems absurd, doesn’t mean it’s untrue
  • Denver Broncos and Super Bowl wins. It’s absurd to some, yet still true.
  • The “one key” analogy (Jesus said He is the only way)
  • We have found the door that the key unlocks. There is no need to check the other doors
  • Look at the evidence before you write something off
  • Evidence, Statistical Probability, etc. all give Christianity weight.
  • What about turning it around. The thought that there is no God, seems absurd to those who believe.

Jesus Has Not Returned: For 2000 years–80 generations–a substantial number of every single generation of Christians has whole-heartedly believed that Jesus’ return was imminent. This often included exact dates that, when they came to pass, did not cause the believers to toss their erroneous ideologies aside. And this perennial incorrectness goes back to the beginning. One can only understand the earliest Christians–the generation immediately following Jesus’ death–as a group who were expecting Jesus to return at any moment (I Thess 4:15-17). Why did they believe this? Because, on more than one occasion, Jesus unequivocally said so (Mark 9:1, Matthew 26:64, Mark 13:30). Christians have proven to be resolutely imperturbable and incorrigible to their continued failures.

  • Defending against the broad brush strokes.
  • Just because Jesus hasn’t come back, doesn’t prove Christianity is false.
  • Dave’s direct deposit check
  • Jesus fulfilled an earlier promise of resurrection. There is no reason to believe He lied about His return

God Doesn’t Care: Most people believe in God. And, when asked why they believe in God, the most common answer is taken from the argument from design: the universe is too ordered and beautiful to have arisen without an intelligence behind it. Whether or not this is true, this claim has little to do with Christianity. Christianity claims that God not only created the world but also takes an active part in its management, in our moral choices, and in our fates. In other words; He cares. It is this conception of God that bends credulity to the breaking point. God as essence–that is a “first cause” God or a “higher power” God–is a far less difficult concept than God as being. First of all, according to centuries old Christian dogma, God is immutable. In other words He is a static, non-changing “being” that cannot create new beliefs, make inferences, or adjust desires. Secondly the idea of an omniscient, omnipotent “being” having desires borders on the nonsensical. If all things are known–all that ever was, is, or will be–what would be the point of desiring anything? This is not just a simple word game. Christians consistently claim that God “wants” us to believe in him and follow his commandments. However, they also claim that he knows whether we will do so or not. So, what is the point of Him wanting anything? A God as essence is palatable. A God as being is not only ridiculous but likely impossible. (P.S. This one is for the non-predestinarians. If you are a predestinarian there are other reasons you are wrong: see below. However, most Christians are not predestinarians; although, if they care about consistency [not high on the list], they should be.)

  • Jesus is proof that God loves us.
  • Jesus laid down His Godhood to be punished and put to death on our behalf.
  • God didn’t just “set it and forget it” in His dealings with the Universe.

Other Religions: For most of Christian history the problems caused by other religions were not pressing, if they were considered at all. In the enclosed world of medieval times–when most people would never travel more than 10 miles from their place of birth–people of non-Christian faiths seemed almost phantasms. However, in the modern world the pots have been poured together and the faiths now intermingle on a daily basis. This, of course, brings religious problems to the forefront. But it also should force Christians (and other faiths) to make a few realizations: first, that faiths are conveyed primarily genealogically–from parents to children–as opposed to through dialectical, later-life conversion. We can never reasonably expect everyone to become Christian. This is not because Christianity is right or wrong, but because faiths carry their own momentum that is not derived from the truth or falsity of the beliefs. Secondly, that people of other faiths can live saintly lives of intense moral rectitude that rivals any Christian saint. And third, that people are exceptionally good at perpetuating, believing in, and dying for faiths that are manifestly false (as Christians believe). In other words, as Christians must unhesitatingly accept, people are very good at making up fantastic stories about events and figures in the past and then believing in them with fervor. If Christianity was the only belief system in the world that made extravagant claims, and if its claims resembled none others in the world, then we would have more reason to believe it to be true. However, this is obviously not so. In fact, often the claims of Christianity are hopelessly derivative. Healing and resurrecting god-men have been the objects of stories for millennia (these god-men were particularly common in the Hellenized world of post-Maccabean Palestine. i.e. Apollonius of Tyana). Also, in addition to sharing many strong features with Mithraism and Zoroastrianism, many early Christians found much distaste with the idea of the virgin birth, finding it too pagan. Plutarch writes in Convivial Disputations,”The fact of the intercourse of a male god with a mortal woman is conceded by all.”

  • This argument doesn’t lend credence to the idea that Christianity is wrong.
  • Christianity is unique in its position that salvation depends on God rather than us.

There is No Soul: The inexcusable flippancy of the term “soul” abounds. And, although most people believe in it and freely use the term, they have no idea what it means. The evidence for physicalism–that the mind is the brain–has become nothing less than overwhelming. This evidence exists not only in the highest levels of research–where scientists can now point to, and manipulate, the exact location in our grey matter where essential characteristics lie–but it exists in the everyday lives of millions of people who take psychotropic drugs on a daily basis. These users will tell you drugs such as Prozac, lithium, Paxil and Ritalin don’t just give them a slight pick-me-up, they make them an entirely different person. Some of them must wonder if their “soul” is depressed or happy, anxiety filled or laid-back. Only by ignoring 200 years of medical progress can we believe that we simply inhabit our bodies–dropping by on the way to something better. It isn’t “I have a brain,” it’s “I am a brain.”

  • Our soul is our “ME”
  • Is it likely that the brain is the interface between body and soul?

Bible Contradiction

via freethoughtdebater.org

    Are all things possible through God?

  • Matthew 19:26 vs Judges 1:9

Resource

READ: 10 Reasons Why Christianity is Wrong by Trevor Burrus

Links

Listen to The Soul (What is it and Why Does it Matter?) w/ Special Guest, Dr. J.P. Moreland

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