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Thread: Your view regarding Heaven

  1. -31
    phins_4_ever's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Locke View Post
    Well I don't know about the incest part, but there's a good reason my cloud will be in close vicinity to the hot lesbian cloud...
    Well, the 'incest part' was more for the OP. He kinda sounded like he wanted to be a big happy family.

    I definitely look forward to your cloud. And if ma' girl comes with me at the same time I have to fight her for a spot near the lesbian cloud.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Statler
    This is exactly what I was talking about with Hitchens, here Rob has provided a list of verses, that even if his simplistic interpretations of such verses were valid (which they’re not, the evil American styled slavery would have been forbidden in ancient Israel)
    You know of a friendly version of being enslaved?

    Quote Originally Posted by Statler
    when you examine them turn out to be completely irrelevant to the debate because he has no basis for his moral objections.
    No basis? How about the felt presence of direct experience? I’ve been around long enough to know what type of behavior makes people suffer, & what type of behavior alleviates suffering. I don’t need threats of damnation or promises of salvation to motivate me either; it’s all from the heart.

    Quote Originally Posted by Statler
    Let’s say that Christianity is true, then morality directly derives from God’s decrees and there is no room to object to any of these verses because to do so would be invoking a moral standard outside of God.

    If Rob’s atheism were true, morality would be culturally relative and subjective, which means that he has still no ground to object to any of these verses because the Hebrews were merely adopting their own form of morality.

    You see, his objections are utterly irrelevant (he knows this, it’s merely a red herring trying to tug at people’s emotions); it’s the classic case of “heads I win tails you lose.”
    We’re talking about the infallible word of God, correct? As a literalist, do you for example support the execution of gay persons? The non-trimming of your beard or hair? The non sowing of more than one type of seed in a field?

    There are plenty of good lessons to be learned from Christianity (as with many religions), but blind, literalist following of all dogma is nothing I want any part of.

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  3. -33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Locke View Post
    The wifey had a similar path. She'd be a better storyteller, but it pretty much came down to having more questions than answers, the answers that were there being unsatisfactory, and being told to drop it with the ones she couldn't get answers to. She also was/is bisexual, and was treated like a leper by her church and family when she tried dating a girl as a teen. Apparently its hard to believe in something that doesn't believe in you...
    Any pics?



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  5. -35
    Statler Waldorf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rob19 View Post
    You know of a friendly version of being enslaved?


    Yup! If I were impoverished or indebted because of drought and my only options were to either lose my land and die of starvation or to voluntarily enter into a working contract with a Hebrew land owner for a period of six years (at which point all of my debt would be forgiven and I’d be given monetary compensation to start my new life) I am going to gladly take the second option. Debt servant-hood was a necessary part of the socioeconomic structure of the Middle East, but the Israelites were given strict rules as to how they were to treat their servants (forced slavery was punishable by death) which was unlike any other society in that area. Only someone completely ignorant of history would try to compare Biblical debt servants to the slaves of antebellum slavery, quite frankly I find that offensive to those who were stolen from Africa and brought here to work for a lifetime of pain and suffering. You should find a new card to play because this one won’t ever work for you.

    No basis? How about the felt presence of direct experience? I’ve been around long enough to know what type of behavior makes people suffer, & what type of behavior alleviates suffering. I don’t need threats of damnation or promises of salvation to motivate me either; it’s all from the heart.


    Why do you define morality as the alleviation of suffering? Says who? Whose suffering? How do you measure suffering? Given your definition, the adulterer who never got caught didn’t do anything morally wrong because he didn’t cause any suffering. What if someone says that morality is defined as whatever brings the individual the most happiness? Or brings others the most pain? Why should your arbitrary definition have any more merit than theirs? You have no basis for objecting to slavery in any other culture if you are an atheist. Unlike Christians, you don’t even have a basis for objecting to the antebellum slavery of the US. Simply saying you don’t like something is nothing even close a defensible standard of morality, it’s purely your irrelevant opinion.

    We’re talking about the infallible word of God, correct? As a literalist, do you for example support the execution of gay persons?


    If I were an Israelite living under the Mosaic Covenant (which ended at the time of Jesus), I would support capital punishment for anyone who committed sins deserving of death. Israel had to have very strict social codes of conduct in order to prevent from losing their way because there were so many evil nations at that time period. They probably didn’t have much trouble with rape, incest, theft, adultery, fornication, blasphemy, and sodomy in their culture because the punishment for such crimes was so severe.

    The non-trimming of your beard or hair? The non sowing of more than one type of seed in a field?


    These statutes do not serve the same purpose as the Moral and Judicial laws above, if you took the time to listen to anyone other than Watts and McKenna you’d already know that. The laws handed down to the Israelites in this portion of Leviticus are known as “hukkim”, they are merely ceremonial laws the Jews were instructed to follow in order to distinguish themselves from the Gentiles. However, since Christ united Jews and Gentiles and “Israel” now encompasses both following these laws is no longer required. So if I were an Israelite living in the time prior to Christ I would follow such ceremonial laws, but not today.

    There are plenty of good lessons to be learned from Christianity (as with many religions), but blind, literalist following of all dogma is nothing I want any part of.


    You don’t understand what Biblical literalism is. As for whether you want any part of it or not, well that too is irrelevant.
    Last edited by Statler Waldorf; 02-21-2013 at 06:42 PM. Reason: Typographic error
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  6. -36
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    Quote Originally Posted by Statler
    Yup! If I were impoverished or indebted because of drought and my only options were to either lose my land and die of starvation or to voluntarily enter into a working contract with a Hebrew land owner for a period of six years (at which point all of my debt would be forgiven and I’d be given monetary compensation to start my new life) I am going to gladly take the second option. Debt servant-hood was a necessary part of the socioeconomic structure of the Middle East, but the Israelites were given strict rules as to how they were to treat their servants (forced slavery was punishable by death) which was unlike any other society in that area. Only someone completely ignorant of history would try to compare Biblical debt servants to the slaves of antebellum slavery, quite frankly I find that offensive to those who were stolen from Africa and brought here to work for a lifetime of pain and suffering. You should find a new card to play because this one won’t ever work for you.
    That’s an indentured servant or a serf, not a slave. By definition, slaves are held without choice; not voluntarily.

    Quote Originally Posted by Statler
    Why do you define morality as the alleviation of suffering? Says who? Whose suffering? How do you measure suffering? Given your definition, the adulterer who never got caught didn’t do anything morally wrong because he didn’t cause any suffering. What if someone says that morality is defined as whatever brings the individual the most happiness? Or brings others the most pain? Why should your arbitrary definition have any more merit than theirs? You have no basis for objecting to slavery in any other culture if you are an atheist. Unlike Christians, you don’t even have a basis for objecting to the antebellum slavery of the US. Simply saying you don’t like something is nothing even close a defensible standard of morality, it’s purely your irrelevant opinion.
    Christian morality is as arbitrarily defined as anyone else’s.

    Quote Originally Posted by Statler
    If I were an Israelite living under the Mosaic Covenant (which ended at the time of Jesus), I would support capital punishment for anyone who committed sins deserving of death. Israel had to have very strict social codes of conduct in order to prevent from losing their way because there were so many evil nations at that time period. They probably didn’t have much trouble with rape, incest, theft, adultery, fornication, blasphemy, and sodomy in their culture because the punishment for such crimes was so severe.

    These statutes do not serve the same purpose as the Moral and Judicial laws above, if you took the time to listen to anyone other than Watts and McKenna you’d already know that. The laws handed down to the Israelites in this portion of Leviticus are known as “hukkim”, they are merely ceremonial laws the Jews were instructed to follow in order to distinguish themselves from the Gentiles. However, since Christ united Jews and Gentiles and “Israel” now encompasses both following these laws is no longer required. So if I were an Israelite living in the time prior to Christ I would follow such ceremonial laws, but not today.
    So the execution of gay people was permitted by God two-thousand years ago & is something you support, but not anymore. Got it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by rob19 View Post
    That’s an indentured servant or a serf, not a slave. By definition, slaves are held without choice; not voluntarily.

    Bingo! So then what the Bible is describing is not slavery! Your whole argument just blew up in your face because the Bible is quite clear that the “slaves” entered into the contract voluntarily and were mandatorily set free after six years with their debts forgiven and monetary compensation. This is why newer translations translate the term as “bond servant” and not “slave” at all, the Bible wasn’t originally written in English and some English translations are less accurate than others. A little bit of reading on your part in the good book (rather than pulling these verses out of context from some 3rd party site) would have saved us both the time and effort.

    Christian morality is as arbitrarily defined as anyone else’s.
    No, morality deriving from God’s unchanging character is by definition objective, not arbitrary at all. Morality derived by men is by definition subjective and therefore meaningless. You dodged my questions by the way.

    So the execution of gay people was permitted by God two-thousand years ago & is something you support, but not anymore. Got it.
    No, the execution of anyone committing a sin deserving of death as decreed by God was moral under the Mosaic Covenant. It has nothing to do with “gay people” and everything to do with a man sodomizing another man. A straight man having sex with another man in prison would have been deserving of stoning just as much as two gay men having sex, it’s about the act, not the person doing the act. Nice try at muddying the waters though.
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  8. -38
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    Quote Originally Posted by Statler
    Bingo! So then what the Bible is describing is not slavery! Your whole argument just blew up in your face because the Bible is quite clear that the “slaves” entered into the contract voluntarily and were mandatorily set free after six years with their debts forgiven and monetary compensation. This is why newer translations translate the term as “bond servant” and not “slave” at all, the Bible wasn’t originally written in English and some English translations are less accurate than others. A little bit of reading on your part in the good book (rather than pulling these verses out of context from some 3rd party site) would have saved us both the time and effort.
    However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way. (Leviticus 25:44-46 NLT)

    If you buy a Hebrew slave, he is to serve for only six years. Set him free in the seventh year, and he will owe you nothing for his freedom. If he was single when he became your slave and then married afterward, only he will go free in the seventh year. But if he was married before he became a slave, then his wife will be freed with him. If his master gave him a wife while he was a slave, and they had sons or daughters, then the man will be free in the seventh year, but his wife and children will still belong to his master. But the slave may plainly declare, 'I love my master, my wife, and my children. I would rather not go free.' If he does this, his master must present him before God. Then his master must take him to the door and publicly pierce his ear with an awl. After that, the slave will belong to his master forever. (Exodus 21:2-6 NLT)

    When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl's owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment. (Exodus 21:7-11 NLT)

    When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. (Exodus 21:20-21 NAB)

    Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. (Ephesians 6:5 NLT)

    Christians who are slaves should give their masters full respect so that the name of God and his teaching will not be shamed. If your master is a Christian, that is no excuse for being disrespectful. You should work all the harder because you are helping another believer by your efforts. Teach these truths, Timothy, and encourage everyone to obey them. (1 Timothy 6:1-2 NLT)

    The servant will be severely punished, for though he knew his duty, he refused to do it. "But people who are not aware that they are doing wrong will be punished only lightly. Much is required from those to whom much is given, and much more is required from those to whom much more is given." (Luke 12:47-48 NLT)

    The lolz.

    Quote Originally Posted by Statler
    No, morality deriving from God’s unchanging character is by definition objective, not arbitrary at all. Morality derived by men is by definition subjective and therefore meaningless. You dodged my questions by the way.


    So as long as I attribute my morality to a God it's not subjective. Got it. Is Hindu morality objective? Or is only Christian morality objective? What about the different sects of Christianity? Are the other branches objective as well, or just the one you happen to believe in?

    Quote Originally Posted by Statler
    No, the execution of anyone committing a sin deserving of death as decreed by God was moral under the Mosaic Covenant. It has nothing to do with “gay people” and everything to do with a man sodomizing another man. A straight man having sex with another man in prison would have been deserving of stoning just as much as two gay men having sex, it’s about the act, not the person doing the act. Nice try at muddying the waters though.


    That's kind of what gay guys do. So again, you & God condone the execution of men who like to fornicate with other men.
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  9. -39
    Statler Waldorf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rob19 View Post
    However, you may purchase male or female slaves from among the foreigners who live among you. You may also purchase the children of such resident foreigners, including those who have been born in your land. You may treat them as your property, passing them on to your children as a permanent inheritance. You may treat your slaves like this, but the people of Israel, your relatives, must never be treated this way. (Leviticus 25:44-46 NLT)


    Yup, but the same ethical laws concerning how servants were to be treated applied to Hebrew and foreign servants alike. In fact, Israel is the only ancient nation to have laws preventing master’s from disfiguring or killing their slaves, all other nations only prevented masters from harming or killing someone else’s slaves; so even given your definition of morality, a person buying a foreign slave and giving them a better life than they would have had in a pagan nation as a slave (alleviating their suffering) is a morally good action. These are people who would have starved to death if they were not servants because food was tied to land ownership. According to your definition of morality there was nothing immoral about this verse, and according to my definition of morality there was nothing immoral about this verse, so I guess this verse is irrelevant to the conversation.

    j If you buy a Hebrew slave, he is to serve for only six years. Set him free in the seventh year, and he will owe you nothing for his freedom. If he was single when he became your slave and then married afterward, only he will go free in the seventh year. But if he was married before he became a slave, then his wife will be freed with him. If his master gave him a wife while he was a slave, and they had sons or daughters, then the man will be free in the seventh year, but his wife and children will still belong to his master. But the slave may plainly declare, 'I love my master, my wife, and my children. I would rather not go free.' If he does this, his master must present him before God. Then his master must take him to the door and publicly pierce his ear with an awl. After that, the slave will belong to his master forever. (Exodus 21:2-6 NLT)


    Several points about this verse…
    1. Hebrew case law is not gender specific, so if a female servant had married a male servant and her six years were over she would be free to go but he would have to stay and finish his contract.
    2. The freed servant could also reimburse the land owner and his wife and children would be able to go free with him because their contracts were paid for.
    3. This same reasoning is even used today in America, if a man is fulfilling a term of military service and he marries a woman whose term is nearly up, he is not allowed to leave the military simply because her contract is up, he must stay and fulfill his contract.
    4. I really don’t see any issue with this verse; it’s designed to prevent servants from marrying one another simply to not fulfill their six year contracts.
    5. If this was truly brutal slavery akin to American slavery, who in their right mind would volunteer for a lifelong contract rather than just waiting for his wife and children to fulfill their six year contracts? The historical truth of the matter is that Hebrew servitude was a system that provided many people with food and shelter (the servants lived in the master’s home with him) and was nothing like our Western understanding of “slavery”.

    When a man sells his daughter as a slave, she will not be freed at the end of six years as the men are. If she does not please the man who bought her, he may allow her to be bought back again. But he is not allowed to sell her to foreigners, since he is the one who broke the contract with her. And if the slave girl's owner arranges for her to marry his son, he may no longer treat her as a slave girl, but he must treat her as his daughter. If he himself marries her and then takes another wife, he may not reduce her food or clothing or fail to sleep with her as his wife. If he fails in any of these three ways, she may leave as a free woman without making any payment. (Exodus 21:7-11 NLT)


    Huh? This verse is dealing with how the master had to obey the contract of servitude and how the terms were voided, not really sure why you posted it. None of these terms were true of antebellum slavery, so you are really only proving that ancient Israel was far more humane that even America, that is not really a good way of effectively making your case.


    When a man strikes his male or female slave with a rod so hard that the slave dies under his hand, he shall be punished. If, however, the slave survives for a day or two, he is not to be punished, since the slave is his own property. (Exodus 21:20-21 NAB)

    There is something a bit fishy about you posting this verse, and that is that it came from a different translation than the one you had been using (the NLT), let’s look at what the NLT says and see if there is a reason you changed translations…

    “If a man beats his male or female slave with a club and the slave dies as a result, the owner must be punished. 21 But if the slave recovers within a day or two, then the owner shall not be punished, since the slave is his property.”

    Surprise! Surprise! Now I see why you changed translations, the NLT’s translation says “recovers” instead of “survives”; cherry-picking the translations that best serve your point is not fair, but you already knew that.

    Anyways, there is a good explanation for the verse regardless of whether you translate it as survives or recovers. The word translated here as “punished” in Hebrew is “naqam”, which is the word always used for capital crimes; so the verse is clearly talking about intent. If an owner beats his servant so hard that the servant dies the Hebrews would kill the master for “murder”, if the master is disciplining his servant and the servant dies a few days later (or recovers a few days later as the NLT renders it), it is obvious it was not the master’s intent to kill the slave and the judges would give him the benefit of the doubt and not give him the death penalty, however it was well within their rights to still punish him for the accidental death.


    Slaves, obey your earthly masters with deep respect and fear. Serve them sincerely as you would serve Christ. (Ephesians 6:5 NLT)


    I don’t see an issue with this verse, what is Paul supposed to say? “Christian slaves revolt!! Anarchy!!!! Stick it to the man!!!!” Lol. The point is that Christians are not living for the things of this life, it’s all temporal.

    Christians who are slaves should give their masters full respect so that the name of God and his teaching will not be shamed. If your master is a Christian, that is no excuse for being disrespectful. You should work all the harder because you are helping another believer by your efforts. Teach these truths, Timothy, and encourage everyone to obey them. (1 Timothy 6:1-2 NLT)


    Same thing, I have no issues with this verse. If respecting and working hard for my master means that life will be easier for other Christian servants because of our good reputation, then that is exactly what I will do. Can you imagine if scripture told Christians to rebel against their masters? You’d have people refusing to pay their taxes or obey simple civil laws because they were a “slave to big government and the Bible teaches us to rebel against our masters!” It’d be total chaos.

    The servant will be severely punished, for though he knew his duty, he refused to do it. "But people who are not aware that they are doing wrong will be punished only lightly. Much is required from those to whom much is given, and much more is required from those to whom much more is given." (Luke 12:47-48 NLT)


    This verse isn’t making a point about slavery but a point about willfully being immoral, it’s an analogy to make a point, no issue here.

    Some facts atheists never seem to bring up (I wonder why!); the Old Testament also teaches that Israel was to give runaway slaves from other nations save harbor (Deut 23), they were also forbidden from capturing and selling slaves in the slave market, which was a crime punishable by death (Exodus 21, Deut 24). Slaves that were injured by their masters were set free (Exodus 21).

    Let’s look at a few verses you didn’t include!

    “If I have rejected the cause of my manservant or my maidservant,
    when they brought a complaint against me,
    14 what then shall I do when God rises up?
    When he makes inquiry, what shall I answer him?
    15 Did not he who made me in the womb make him?
    And did not one fashion us in the womb?” Job 31:13-15 (ESV)

    In the eyes of God both servant and master are equals.
    “Then God said, “Let us make man[h] in our image, after our likeness. And let them have dominion over the fish of the sea and over the birds of the heavens and over the livestock and over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.”

    27 So God created man in his own image,
    in the image of God he created him;
    male and female he created them.” Genesis 1:26-27 (ESV)

    All humans, regardless of race and gender are made in the image of God. There is a transcendent dignity to mankind that is impossible to derive from simple naturalism (where it is believed humans are just complex animals).

    “But now that faith has come, we are no longer under a guardian, 26 for in Christ Jesus you are all sons of God, through faith. 27 For as many of you as were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free, there is no male and female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. 29 And if you are Christ's, then you are Abraham's offspring, heirs according to promise.” Gal 3:26-29 (ESV)

    Beautiful verse speaking of how God’s covenant is valid for everyone who is saved, regardless of ethnicity, social standing, or gender; to think that a verse like this was written 2,000 years ago really is amazing, America didn’t get to this point until the late 1960s. I think I’ll leave it with that verse.

    So as long as I attribute my morality to a God it's not subjective. Got it. Is Hindu morality objective? Or is only Christian morality objective? What about the different sects of Christianity? Are the other branches objective as well, or just the one you happen to believe in?


    Standards of morality tied to transcendent law givers are by definition objective; although other religious concepts of morality all have fatal flaws. However, I am not going to let you toss out a red herring by bringing up other religions (you would object if every time you had an objection to Christianity I started defending other religions rather than the one we are talking about). You are an atheist, you objected to slavery upon atheistic grounds; however, your subjective standard of morality that you proposed would not render slavery in ancient times immoral. Now you either have to change your definition of morality or concede that you have no grounds to morally object to what scripture teaches about servitude and slavery.

    That's kind of what gay guys do. So again, you & God condone the execution of men who like to fornicate with other men.


    That’s what gay guys do? What kind of argument is that? It’s obvious you are confounding the inclination or predisposition towards a particular sin with acting upon that inclination (which is a version of the naturalistic fallacy). Hebrews put homosexuals to death not for having the inclination towards sodomizing other men, but for acting upon that inclination and actually sodomizing other men.

    Let’s look and see if your reasoning actually stands…

    “Gay men like to sodomize other men; therefore gay men have the moral right to sodomize other men.”

    “Pedophiles like to molest little children; therefore, pedophiles have the moral right to molest little children.”

    “Husbands are inclined to have sex with other women; therefore, husbands have the moral right to commit adultery.”

    “Humans as predators are inclined to kill others; therefore humans have the moral right to kill others.”

    “Thieves are inclined to steal property; therefore, thieves have the moral right to steal other property.”

    Obviously your reasoning is flawed. If a gay person never acted on their inclination to have sexual relations they would not have ever been charged with a capital crime in Israel.
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    Justifying slavery...?


    If I could take your pain and frame it, and hang it on my wall,
    maybe you would never have to hurt again...

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    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 03-12-2006, 11:36 AM

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