Nothing magic, it’s just that his technology is a bit more than we can get our heads around. Like creating the universe and the earth’s ‘magic’ moon.
Everything you say is an “analogy”
Jesus had no technology. And no money. Just a drifter preacher.
Anything you say.
Dale, you’re having the same trouble here that I run into constantly. Let me encourage you to continue as you may.
Calling it a “mental block” is about the politest thing I can say about the responses you’re mostly getting.
It would seem as though the only thing we can do is to let the Scriptures speak for themselves:
“Brethren, sons of Abraham’s family, and those among you who fear God, to us the message of this salvation has been sent. For those who live in Jerusalem, and their rulers, recognizing neither Him nor the utterances of the prophets which are read every Sabbath, fulfilled these by condemning Him. And though they found no ground for putting Him to death, they asked Pilate that He be executed. When they had carried out all that was written concerning Him, they took Him down from the cross and laid Him in a tomb. But God raised Him from the dead; and for many days He appeared to those who came up with Him from Galilee to Jerusalem, the very ones who are now His witnesses to the people. And we preach to you the good news of the promise made to the fathers, that God has fulfilled this promise to our children in that He raised up Jesus, as it is also written in the second Psalm, ‘ You are My Son; today i have begotten You.’ As for the fact that He raised Him up from the dead, no longer to return to decay, He has spoken in this way: ‘I will give you the holy and sure blessings of David.’ Therefore He also says in another Psalm, ‘You will not allow Your Holy One to undergo decay .’ For David, after he had served the purpose of God in his own generation, fell asleep, and was laid among his fathers and underwent decay; but He whom God raised did not undergo decay. Therefore let it be known to you, brethren, that through Him forgiveness of sins is proclaimed to you, and through Him everyone who believes is freed from all things, from which you could not be freed through the Law of Moses. Therefore take heed, so that the thing spoken of in the Prophets may not come upon you:
‘Behold, you scoffers, and marvel, and perish; For I am accomplishing a work in your days, A work which you will never believe, though someone should describe it to you .’” - Acts 13:26-41 NASB
You and I both know this same willful disdain has been going on for millenia, even among those who should have known better:
“The Lord, the God of their fathers, sent word to them again and again by His messengers, because He had compassion on His people and on His dwelling place; but they continually mocked the messengers of God, despised His words and scoffed at His prophets, until the wrath of the Lord arose against His people, until there was no remedy.” – 2 Chronicles 36:15-16 NASB
Longsuffering love is so far beyond most people’s ken these days, and it is still an amazement to me at just how long God lets it go on before finally acting, out of mercy.
I’m getting tired of reading this gibberish about mental blocks. I believe the Bible contains some passage about removing beams from your own eyes before pointing to specks in others.
Yes, it does. Good to know you’re willing to read it.
I’ve read it cover to cover three times in my life. Though I always had doubts, I was a Christian until my mid twenties.
Doubts are the essential bedrock of real belief. I started attending church in high school, and quickly had questions my youth pastor couldn’t answer. Did a lot of private study and searching. Bumped headlong into the historical veracity of the resurrection, like Josh, and only then was willing to explore the “religious angle” positively.
I’ve been astounded by the available resources for life-long skeptics ever since --but, it does involve being willing to discover the “uncomfortable” things, as well.
Good to know our paths have so much in common.
And some people don’t get over those doubts for all manner of reasons. Do we have to go straight to “willful disdain”, “love beyond one’s ken” and the like from there? It’s possible for people to have different and honest outlooks about things.
The “willful disdain” is about a person’s setting their mind to mock the faith of others, not just to have doubts. That goes far beyond mere honest disagreement.
“Seek and ye shall find.”
But, you knew that already. Thanks for not being mocking about it.
As for “love beyond ken,” that is about God’s love for us, and it truly is astounding, for the believer and unbeliever alike.
Dale’s original point is that God is subtle enough to allow room for people to make a choice.
He rewards the faith of those who choose Him, but refuses to do “magic tricks” on command, because He knows that such does NOT create true faith.
The whole thing is encapsulated in less than three paragraphs here:
"In those days, when there was again a large crowd and they had nothing to eat, Jesus called His disciples and *said to them, ‘I feel compassion for the people because they have remained with Me now three days and have nothing to eat. If I send them away hungry to their homes, they will faint on the way; and some of them have come from a great distance.’ …And He directed the people to sit down on the ground; and taking the seven loaves, He gave thanks and broke them, and started giving them to His disciples to serve to them, and they served them to the people. And they ate and were satisfied; and they picked up seven large baskets full of what was left over of the broken pieces. About four thousand were there; and He sent them away. And immediately He entered the boat with His disciples and came to the district of Dalmanutha.
The Pharisees came out and began to argue with Him, seeking from Him a sign from heaven, to test Him. Sighing deeply in His spirit, He said, ‘Why does this generation seek for a sign? Truly I say to you, no sign will be given to this generation.’ Leaving them, He again embarked and went away to the other side. - Mark 8:1-3,6,8-13 NASB
Literally, the entire cosmos is the visible proof of God!
If you want even more proof, look deeply into the message and identity of the man whom God raised from the dead, “by many convincing proofs.”
The reference is here:
“The first account I composed, Theophilus, about all that Jesus began to do and teach,until the day when He was taken up to heaven, after He had by the Holy Spirit given orders to the apostles whom He had chosen. To these He also presented Himself alive after His suffering, by many convincing proofs, appearing to them over a period of forty days and speaking of the things concerning the kingdom of God.” - Acts 1:1-3 NASB
@Guy_Coe must be one of those annoying materialists that we hear people complaining about.
“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation. For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities— all things have been created through Him and for Him. He is before all things, and in Him all things hold together.” – Colossians 1:13-17 NASB
I’m glad you are subtle enough to understand Dale’s original point. But that point makes no sense.
First, this subtlety is a fairly recent development if you believe the bible. He used to manifest himself regularly in spectacular ways, once upon a time.
Second, this subtlety is most convenient, as it’s just what we would see if God didn’t exist or had no interest in the world, so it prevents anyone from examining those hypotheses with evidence.
Third, the justification for this subtlety makes little sense. You say that presenting evidence of his existence would not allow people to make a choice, yet you also say that there is proof of his existence that should be compelling to anyone. Those are mutually contradictory assertions. Anyway, none of the “proof” is compelling unless you already desperately want to believe it. That’s not a healthy way to approach data.
I’m sorry to have to tell you, but I don’t find bible-quotes persuasive. I’m sure they hold great value to people who already believe, that makes sense to me. But if you seek to persuade nonbelievers, trust me, mindlessly regurgitating scripture just makes our eyes glaze over.
You are witnessing or preaching much more than you are explaining or arguing, and there’s a very big difference between those two. The former is what you do to the choir, the latter is how you engage and persuade. Bible-thumping just makes me close my browser and start playing video games.
What do you expect from a site dedicated to the goals you already know?
The “mental blocks” just keep coming… Jesus used to refer to them as “foolishness to the Greeks…”
Where have I ever said anything remotely like there being no evidence for God?
From where would you get the idea that God is benign towards those who deny He exists?
What absolute lunacy, to expect to not be exposed to the Bible on a site like this.
–So Paul stood in the midst of the Areopagus and said, “Men of Athens, I observe that you are very religious in all respects. For while I was passing through and examining the objects of your worship, I also found an altar with this inscription, ‘TO AN UNKNOWN GOD.’ Therefore what you worship in ignorance, this I proclaim to you. The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands; nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things; and He made from one man every nation of mankind to live on all the face of the earth, having determined their appointed times and the boundaries of their habitation, that they would seek God, if perhaps they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us;for in Him we live and move and exist, as even some of your own poets have said, ‘For we also are His children.’ Being then the children of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, an image formed by the art and thought of man. Therefore having overlooked the times of ignorance, God is now declaring to men that all people everywhere should repent, because He has fixed a day in which He will judge the world in righteousness through a Man whom He has appointed, having furnished proof to all men by raising Him from the dead. ”Now when they heard of the resurrection of the dead, some began to sneer, but others said, “We shall hear you again concerning this.” - Acts 17:22-32 NASB
Let’s be completely clear about the obligation of Christians to keep bringing the issues back to both what the Bible says, and to the Person of Jesus. It’s an obligation which @swamidass himself keenly feels, and the whole raison de’etere of Peaceful Science.
What would you accept as visible proof for God? A cosmic mattress tag?
Ask yourself why your eyes glaze over at the text of the Bible. As “ancient literature,” it should be at least interesting in its own right.
This isn’t a site made for proselytizing.
It most certainly is, but not at the sectarian level.
–And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing, in whose case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelieving so that they might not see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God.For we do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “ Light shall shine out of darkness,” is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ. - 2 Corinthians 4:3-6 NASB
Why do I currently have the same urge?