Original Sin?

March 12th, 2014 at 7:29:00 AM permalink
Nareed
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 316
Posts: 10799
Quote: FrGamble
We also came to realize that the Bible is indeed a book of faith that communicates truth, but as Nareed pointed out this can be done through legend, or allegory, poetry and also through verified historical narrative.


My implication is that the Bible is a collection of legends. Whatever truth and actual history percolates through, is 1) hard to discern, 2) distorted by the way it is told and 3) not as abundant as most people would like to beileve. Like the Illiad. Was there a war between Troy and Mycenean cities? Very likely so. Did the siege of Troy last a decade? No way. Was Achilles invulnerable, except for his heel? No. Did the gods actively intervene in the fight? Don't make me laugh. What was the war about? Very likely not about Helen. Did people such as Helen, Paris, Priam, Diomedes and such live? Who knows. Did three goddesses submit to the Judgement of Paris in order to claim a fourth goddess' golden apple? Hell, no. But it makes for a good story.

Finally, did Aneas trek from Troy (which is somwehere in what we now call Turkey) to Italy and eventually gave rise to the Romans? No. But it's a good pedigree to pretend to have. Associating one's people, family and/or nation to the great powers of the near past is all too common (though the Anaeid was written at the height of Roman power). So in the Bible, for example, the Hebrews tried to tie themselves to the very first cities and great powers in existence, thus claiming Abraham hailed from Mesopotamia, and later on they tried to tack on to Egypt, the greatness of which resonates down to the present day. There are British legends that Christ visited England before venturing to preach in Judea. And the Mormons have some interesting notions about even transatlantic voyages by their savior. Even the US has built up legends, though more like vignettes, about its history. Washington and the cherry tree (Mike Duncan in one podcast semi-jokingly speculates whether in the future people would claim Washington was born from a cherry tree, and even had the wooden teeth to prove it <g>), the Boston Massacre, the ride of Paul Revere, etc.

All legends. Some make for good stories.

Franklin did fly a kite into the clouds, and probably in a thunderstorm. it was something the man did several times. But Franklin was an accomplished scholar. he took precautions, such as holding on to an insulating silk cord, and took measurements by bringing a Leiden Jar to the famous key in the kite string, to see whether it would show an electric charge.

But few can be simply dismissed as legends, for these have shaped the beliefs, ideologies and histories of entire civilizations.

Perhaps developing fiction wasn't such a good idea...
If Trump where half as smart as he thinks he is, he'd be twice as smart as he really is.
March 12th, 2014 at 8:27:18 AM permalink
odiousgambit
Member since: Oct 28, 2012
Threads: 72
Posts: 1549
Quote: Wizard
Is this connection between Satan and snakes why some churches feature snake handling?


It comes more from the New Testament, I'm pretty sure.

Mark 16:18 "they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all"

http://biblehub.com/mark/16-18.htm

Acts 28:3 "Paul gathered a pile of brushwood and, as he put it on the fire, a viper, driven out by the heat, fastened itself on his hand." [and Paul was not harmed]

http://biblehub.com/acts/28-3.htm

I always liked Bible study but am quite the flawed Christian.
Mustard:You like Kipling, Miss Scarlet? Sure, I'll eat anything [from movie]
March 12th, 2014 at 12:06:24 PM permalink
FrGamble
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 44
Posts: 5047
The difficulty in believing the Bible is a bunch of made up stories is that the Illiad and other ancient legends did not change the world. The year we are currently in is not based on the birth of Achilles. Trying to make the Bible like these others stories is rather ridiculous.
March 12th, 2014 at 12:12:40 PM permalink
aceofspades
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 49
Posts: 426
Quote: FrGamble
The difficulty in believing the Bible is a bunch of made up stories is that the Illiad and other ancient legends did not change the world. The year we are currently in is not based on the birth of Achilles. Trying to make the Bible like these others stories is rather ridiculous.



Yes, but, the Bible was necessary back in the day in order to have a written history of Jewish law for all to read (i.e. taking God's name in vain was a rule for contracts - such that swearing on the name of god meant the people entering ingot eh contract were being truthful)


What I always like to pose as a question is the following:

When someone says they are the son of god today (i.e. David Koresh), he is laughed at as a fake…why is there a difference between someone claiming they are the son of god 2,000 years ago versus someone making the same claim today…?

Also, if Twitter, Facebook and cell phone cameras were available back then, there would be proof of "miracles" - but, as there weren't, we must rely on the word of a few men (who wrote the gospels many years after Jesus died)
The sophistication of society comes into play.


How do we know that, 2,000 from now, the Harry Potter books will not have started a religion as well?
March 12th, 2014 at 12:54:04 PM permalink
TheCesspit
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 23
Posts: 1929
Quote: FrGamble
The difficulty in believing the Bible is a bunch of made up stories is that the Illiad and other ancient legends did not change the world. The year we are currently in is not based on the birth of Achilles. Trying to make the Bible like these others stories is rather ridiculous.


The legitmacy of the Bible is because it changed the world, because it was legitmate?

The Illiad did change the world. And we've still heard of Achilles and the Trojan horse. And being aware of Greek's bearing gifts. We still listen to the words Confucuis "Do not do to others what you do not want done to yourself"... which some dude from Galilee also stated a few hundreds of years later in a certain parable (and remains, for me, one of the best lessons I learned from Sunday school).

Words and ideas, stories, allegories, fables, truisms and half-truths have always changed the world, and the influence of ideas continues down the ages. Sometimes we can see the root of them, sometimes not. Sometimes one document is held up as the root, but in the end, the Bible is still influenced by documents and traditions that came before it.

I think it's high honour to consider the Bible as a worthwhile book of stories, truism and ideas from the past. Some of these are relevant today, some aren't (see: mixed cloths, and sacrificing pigeons and ancient ways of dealing with mildew). But that's not to say it is without value, or to say it is of some greater sprititual source. It's just a book, but that in no way lessens it's impact or demeans it.
It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die.... it's called Life
March 12th, 2014 at 1:48:01 PM permalink
Nareed
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 316
Posts: 10799
Quote: FrGamble
The difficulty in believing the Bible is a bunch of made up stories is that the Illiad and other ancient legends did not change the world.


The Bible dind't change the world. the church, working in hand with the state, did. had Constantine I not adopted Christianity, you'd be singing a different tune (literally, too).

Nor could the Illiad change the world in any major way. It's an epic poem, recounting the deeds of Heroes and gods in a war. It does not concern itself with ethics, politics, or even military tactics. A story is a poor way to control people. A manual on ethics heavy on politics, complete with comandments (major and minor) and even laws, goes much, much farther in helping to impose the will of the rulers on the ruled.

If you must compare the Bible with something, try the Koran.

Quote:
The year we are currently in is not based on the birth of Achilles.


I forget what the year is from the Founding of Rome... ;)

But speaking of books, do you consider Dante's "Divine Comedy" to be theologically valid? Larry Niven calls it the world's first hard science fiction story, which I guess is so if one considers theology a science. He then wrote two novels about a Dante-like Hell along with a colalborator (I forget the name).
If Trump where half as smart as he thinks he is, he'd be twice as smart as he really is.
March 12th, 2014 at 5:13:54 PM permalink
FrGamble
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 44
Posts: 5047
Quote: aceofspades



What I always like to pose as a question is the following:

When someone says they are the son of god today (i.e. David Koresh), he is laughed at as a fake…why is there a difference between someone claiming they are the son of god 2,000 years ago versus someone making the same claim today…?


There really is a quite simply and logical answer to that question - the difference is Jesus actually was the Son of God.

Quote:
Also, if Twitter, Facebook and cell phone cameras were available back then, there would be proof of "miracles" - but, as there weren't, we must rely on the word of a few men (who wrote the gospels many years after Jesus died)
The sophistication of society comes into play.


You can actually rely on the most attested to work of the ancient world written only decades after Jesus died at a time where the oral tradition of history was by far the most important way of passing on true stories about events and people. You can also rely on thousands and thousands of people who saw Jesus' miracles who would have been quick to squash any rumors of false miracles that supposedly took place or were written down by a few people. Finally, you might want to rely on the millions upon millions of men and women throughout history and still today who believe in Jesus and have seen and felt His miraculous presence and love in their lives.
March 12th, 2014 at 6:08:50 PM permalink
TheCesspit
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 23
Posts: 1929
When was the first book the new Testament written?
It is said that your life flashes before your eyes just before you die.... it's called Life
March 12th, 2014 at 6:33:28 PM permalink
aceofspades
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 49
Posts: 426
Quote: FrGamble
There really is a quite simply and logical answer to that question - the difference is Jesus actually was the Son of God.


See…when an argument like that is made…it ends the argument…because there is no rational way to discuss that other than for me to say he was not the son of god as there is no god. And then, we are back to square one.



Quote: FrGamble
You can actually rely on the most attested to work of the ancient world written only decades after Jesus died at a time where the oral tradition of history was by far the most important way of passing on true stories about events and people. You can also rely on thousands and thousands of people who saw Jesus' miracles who would have been quick to squash any rumors of false miracles that supposedly took place or were written down by a few people. Finally, you might want to rely on the millions upon millions of men and women throughout history and still today who believe in Jesus and have seen and felt His miraculous presence and love in their lives.



So merely because someone believe in it that makes it true?

Circular logic - Jesus is the Son of God because the Bible says so. The Bible says so because Jesus said he is the son of God.
March 12th, 2014 at 7:02:56 PM permalink
FrGamble
Member since: Oct 24, 2012
Threads: 44
Posts: 5047
Quote: aceofspades
See…when an argument like that is made…it ends the argument…because there is no rational way to discuss that other than for me to say he was not the son of god as there is no god. And then, we are back to square one.


You are exactly wrong, I am saying he is the Son of God because He was the most influential person in human history, who countless people believe in and have a personal experience of and relationship with God through, with, and in Him. Miracles galore have been attributed to His name, power, and love. An institution He founded made up of sinful human beings has existed for some 2,000 years despite its own best attempts to discredit and destroy itself. We could go on and on as to other reasons why Jesus of Nazareth is the Christ, Son of the Living God. It is you who want to stop the argument by trying to fool yourself into believing this is only a matter of opinion between us, each lacking or having equally valid proof and evidence on our side. I believe strongly in my evidence and I don't think you have anything but your own opinion and a desire to not talk about it truthfully.