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God's Moral Authority


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I'd like to jump into this argument with a few replies to some points that were brought up earlier:

Consider a prisoner tied to a chair in front of you. In order to get him to confess, you threaten him to be tortured for a very long time. You scare him with what you're going to do with him if he doesn't confess. You then tell him that he will be free and available to many women if he does confess. A glimmer of hope shines in the prisoner's eye. He confesses (whether he did the crime or not). Now, can you say that this man confessed of his own free will?

Consider another example. You find your son taking a cookie out of the bag of cookies. You find the nearest knife and loom over him with it angled towards him. You tell him to put it back or else you'll cut him into pieces and feed him to the dog. The kid puts the cookie back in the bag promptly (and suffers considerable trauma later, but that's besides the point). Can you say that your son put the cookie back of his own free will?

My argument is that when heavy consequences (such as ETERNAL damnation) weigh your decision to do something, it is nearly forcing you to make the decision towards avoiding the consequences. You can't help but make the decision.

And yet, as is plainly obvious, large numbers of people choose to disobey God anyway, despite the threat of eternal damnation. Why is that? Why do you disobey God? Because you do not believe He exists.

That is the flaw in your argument and your examples: The prisoner is certain he will be tortured for a long time. The boy is certain his father will kill him. But God doesn't give you such certainties. His threats and promises do not infringe on your free will because you have the luxury of believing that they are not real.

A woman goes to work by walking every day, crossing a couple streets on her way. One morning, she takes her usual route with an urge to begin her day fresh. She steps out to cross the street - BAM! A bus from out of nowhere hits her and she lays on the ground for ten very long minutes before eventually dying due to shock and trauma. How does free will factor into this suffering?

The free will of the bus driver.

On that note, regarding the free will versus omniscience argument: Where exactly does the Bible define omniscience? To my knowledge, the Bible does not give us a clear list of the attributes of God. Omniscience, omnipotence, and all the other "omni's" are ideas created by medieval philosophers. Yes, the Bible does mention that God knows "everything", but "everything" is not well defined. My own personal view is that God knows all possible timelines and all possible futures - He knows all the possible decisions we could make - but He does not know exactly which of those decisions we will make. If you are not satisfied with this version of God, that's too bad, but it is perfectly compatible with what we know about the Christian God (medieval speculation notwithstanding).

I have a similar answer to any argument based on God's "perfection". Where does the Bible say that God is perfect and how does it define "perfection"?

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I'd like to jump into this argument with a few replies to some points that were brought up earlier:

And yet, as is plainly obvious, large numbers of people choose to disobey God anyway, despite the threat of eternal damnation. Why is that? Why do you disobey God? Because you do not believe He exists.

That is the flaw in your argument and your examples: The prisoner is certain he will be tortured for a long time. The boy is certain his father will kill him. But God doesn't give you such certainties. His threats and promises do not infringe on your free will because you have the luxury of believing that they are not real.

Well, like in my examples with the gun, in this case I an atheist do not have a gun to my face. I have a guy sticking something out of his jacket to make a pointed object but not entirely sure it's a gun. You, a Christian, very well believe that there is a gun and it might as well be in your face. You lose your free will. As soon as you believe that there is a Hell, your free will is no longer free. As for me, I supposedly still have free will in this aspect, but again I've discussed that since God knows what I am going to do millenia before I do it, I really do not have free will.
The free will of the bus driver.
So the woman lost her free will? The bus driver willed to smash her with his bus? No, sorry. That doesn't cut it.
On that note, regarding the free will versus omniscience argument: Where exactly does the Bible define omniscience? To my knowledge, the Bible does not give us a clear list of the attributes of God. Omniscience, omnipotence, and all the other "omni's" are ideas created by medieval philosophers.
I have a couple answers for you: 1) many Christians, especially southern (from my perspective being in Florida), already proclaim that God knows all and all those other omni's you want to tack on. Any argument in response to God's omniscience/omni- whatever is in response to the Christians who proclaim it already. 2) The Bible says there is no end to what God can do, and what is argued here is that omnipotence implies omniscience.
Yes, the Bible does mention that God knows "everything", but "everything" is not well defined. My own personal view is that God knows all possible timelines and all possible futures - He knows all the possible decisions we could make - but He does not know exactly which of those decisions we will make. If you are not satisfied with this version of God, that's too bad, but it is perfectly compatible with what we know about the Christian God (medieval speculation notwithstanding).
Then he does not know everything. True, "everything" is not well-defined, but there is no reason to think that God does not know everything so it's safe to assume "everything" actually means, everything. Anyway, this is merely further defining God to make sense. Like my pet dragon on my shoulder. Oh, you can't see him? Well, that's because he's invisible. You can't smell him? Well, that's because he's free of any pheromones. You can't feel him? Well, that's because he can switch shoulders at the speed of light when you try to pet him. How do I know he exists? Oh, it's in this book I found. How do I know this dragon is on my shoulder? because the book declares it so. Etc ad infinitum.
I have a similar answer to any argument based on God's "perfection". Where does the Bible say that God is perfect and how does it define "perfection"?

I don't know, you're the believer. Usually, I'm just going off of what you tell me. Is he perfect? If not, then say so and we'll go from there. It's the Christian who declares God to be perfect.
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Well, like in my examples with the gun, in this case I an atheist do not have a gun to my face. I have a guy sticking something out of his jacket to make a pointed object but not entirely sure it's a gun. You, a Christian, very well believe that there is a gun and it might as well be in your face. You lose your free will. As soon as you believe that there is a Hell, your free will is no longer free. As for me, I supposedly still have free will in this aspect, but again I've discussed that since God knows what I am going to do millenia before I do it, I really do not have free will.

The important part is that you have the free will to choose between atheism and Christianity. Perhaps my free will is more limited now that I am a Christian, but that doesn't matter; the point is that I chose to be a Christian back when I wasn't yet sure if there was a gun.

So the woman lost her free will? The bus driver willed to smash her with his bus? No, sorry. That doesn't cut it.

If there is any free will at all, it is inevitable that the free will of some will clash with the free will of others. Yes, the woman lost her free will - and her life - because of the free will of another. Why is that a problem?

I have a couple answers for you: 1) many Christians, especially southern (from my perspective being in Florida), already proclaim that God knows all and all those other omni's you want to tack on. Any argument in response to God's omniscience/omni- whatever is in response to the Christians who proclaim it already. 2) The Bible says there is no end to what God can do, and what is argued here is that omnipotence implies omniscience.

1) I have a very low opinion of Christians in the American South and I have no intention of defending their beliefs.

2) "No end to what God can do" is pretty vague as far as the omni's are concerned. The point, of course, is that God is really, really powerful and can manipulate the laws of physics with a mere thought. There is no practical reason for us to worry about the question of exactly how powerful He is. "The most powerful being in the universe" should be enough. The question of God's omnipotence may be interesting philosophically, but it is so unimportant in practice that it should be no wonder the Bible doesn't talk about it very much.

Then he does not know everything. True, "everything" is not well-defined, but there is no reason to think that God does not know everything so it's safe to assume "everything" actually means, everything. Anyway, this is merely further defining God to make sense. Like my pet dragon on my shoulder. Oh, you can't see him? Well, that's because he's invisible. You can't smell him? Well, that's because he's free of any pheromones. You can't feel him? Well, that's because he can switch shoulders at the speed of light when you try to pet him. How do I know he exists? Oh, it's in this book I found. How do I know this dragon is on my shoulder? because the book declares it so. Etc ad infinitum.

We are dealing with an aspect of God that is not well defined. Yes, I am intentionally defining it so as to make sense, but you are also guilty of intentionally defining it so as to not make sense. Of course, we could both admit that we don't really know and stop trying to use this argument against the other side. I would be fine with that. The point is that you cannot use God's presumed omniscience as a logical argument against His existence when the Bible does not claim that God is necessarily omniscient in the way you assume Him to be.

Your example with the dragon is completely out of place because I am not trying to prove to you that the dragon exists. We are assuming that it exists, for the sake of the argument, and trying to guess some of its attributes. You are saying "the dragon cannot logically exist because it cannot be invisible and green at the same time", and I am asking "who said that the dragon must be green or that it always stays invisible?"

I don't know, you're the believer. Usually, I'm just going off of what you tell me. Is he perfect? If not, then say so and we'll go from there. It's the Christian who declares God to be perfect.

"Perfect", in this context, is a word with no meaning. That is my view. You might as well say that God is blatriguh. "Blatriguh" is also a word with no meaning.

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"Perfect", in this context, is a word with no meaning. That is my view. You might as well say that God is blatriguh. "Blatriguh" is also a word with no meaning.

Similar argument than that of Carnap against the word 'God' itself. However (to use Wittgenstein's argument against Carnap), how is it then, that we do use words like 'perfect' or 'God' anyway, while we don't use 'blatriguh' in english that much?

I don't know, you're the believer. Usually, I'm just going off of what you tell me. Is he perfect? If not, then say so and we'll go from there. It's the Christian who declares God to be perfect.

Who is 'the Christian'? You mean Jesus Christ? You have heard his speaches? Or is it in Testament written that God is 'perfect'? Is greek use of 'teleos' the same as english 'perfect'?

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2) "No end to what God can do" is pretty vague as far as the omni's are concerned. The point, of course, is that God is really, really powerful and can manipulate the laws of physics with a mere thought. There is no practical reason for us to worry about the question of exactly how powerful He is. "The most powerful being in the universe" should be enough. The question of God's omnipotence may be interesting philosophically, but it is so unimportant in practice that it should be no wonder the Bible doesn't talk about it very much.

Of course, there's not much to talk about in the first place aside from repeating "He's the greatest, the powerfullest, the outstandingly powertastic". Anyway, I consider certain omni's necessary for Christianity or any god worth worshiping. For God to instead just be very powerful, very knowledgeable, and with a certain level of benevolence, then why worship him? Why worship a being that exists just like we do, with limits and strengths? An alien that creates us is not deemed worthy of worship. The difference in power and knowledge from him and us is comparable to the difference in us and the Neanderthals of our history. I wouldn't expect to be worshiped by any of them, likewise I wouldn't expect the alien to suppose we worship him if he is simply a powerful being and not an all-powerful being.
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Of course, there's not much to talk about in the first place aside from repeating "He's the greatest, the powerfullest, the outstandingly powertastic". Anyway, I consider certain omni's necessary for Christianity or any god worth worshiping. For God to instead just be very powerful, very knowledgeable, and with a certain level of benevolence, then why worship him? Why worship a being that exists just like we do, with limits and strengths? An alien that creates us is not deemed worthy of worship. The difference in power and knowledge from him and us is comparable to the difference in us and the Neanderthals of our history. I wouldn't expect to be worshiped by any of them, likewise I wouldn't expect the alien to suppose we worship him if he is simply a powerful being and not an all-powerful being.

Actually, the only thing that is necessary to make God worth worshipping is for Him to be the Creator of the Universe. And the Christian God did create the Universe (while the United States did not create the Netherlands). The difference in power and knowledge between Humanity and the Creator of the Universe cannot under any circumstances be as small as the difference in power and knowledge between different sections of Humanity. God is to us as we are to bacteria (except that God created us, but we did not create bacteria). Are you saying that a being who gave you life - and who offers you eternal life - would not be worthy of your worship?

Besides, God is all-powerful within our universe. He can manipulate the laws of physics after all. The only thing we're not sure of is what He could do outside our universe.

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This may seem like a cheerleader post.. but i dont care.  Edrico everything you have been posting so far has made alot of sense to me, your perspective on christianity is quite refreshing, and i appreciate the way you think outside the box and beat down old stereotypes and unfounded assumptions.

Also i agree with your point that God only has to be the creator of the universe to deserve worship, especially if He is responsible for giving us life and eventually eternal life.  Being gifted with our own consciouness and unique lives is something so fantastic that to not appreciate the being that did it.... is just pure ungratefulness and pride.

Also the point about the "gun" in the jacket.... yes i agree that we may have less free will now that we are christians, but that we did make the choice back when we werent sure whether it was a gun or not, and that is what matters.  However, edrico, tell me even if God did know what we would choose to do... how does that take away our free will? Its still "US" that will make the choices.

For instance if i am hungry and i am on my way to a mexican restaurant..... i KNOW i will order the cheese dip and a sweet tea.  Now, i know what i will do before i will do it, its still 10 minutes before i get to the restaurant and then i will actually make the choice.  But i know what that choice is.  So is my pre-knowledge of my choice violating my Free Will?  Thats just nonsense.

To me the only true violation of free will is to have someone force you to do something that you dont want to do, such as being raped.  The woman doesnt want to have sex with you but you make her do it by force anyways.  It other words Free Will is only violated when someone else's Free Will overrides yours and forces you to do the opposite.

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The idea that god might not be omniscient, etc is something I'll have to think about and perhaps come back to you anoter time. It has quite profound effects.

Gunwounds, you miss the point somewhat. Knowledge of the future does not preclude free will per se. The contradiction comes because of God's particular role as a creator. By creating us, he defines all our actions. Although from our point of view, we appear to have free will, we do not: God created the universe such that this afternoon, I made myself a cup of milky tea. Had god created me differently, I would have made myself a cup of strong tea. But because god could have created the universe in any way he desired, and because god was omniscient of the effects of that creation, the decision to create me such that this afternoon, I would make milky tea was God's. Yes, I 'choose' to make my te milky, but I only make that choice because God created me that way. The distinction between illusion of free will and actuality is not important in some situations (i.e. for practical in-the-system purposes), but it can be important when considering the viability of a god. Namely, that god deliberately created humans knowing that we would do evil: either we have an immoral god or a non-omnipotent one or a non-omniscient one.

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Namely, that god deliberately created humans knowing that we would do evil: either we have an immoral god or a non-omnipotent one or a non-omniscient one.

Better be created to have the choice than not be created at all. And despite me doing bad things here and there, I nonetheless appreciate life from the good I can participate in/with. I see no need for any White/Black God as you seem to see in Gunwound's.

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The idea that god might not be omniscient, etc is something I'll have to think about and perhaps come back to you anoter time. It has quite profound effects.

Gunwounds, you miss the point somewhat. Knowledge of the future does not preclude free will per se. The contradiction comes because of God's particular role as a creator. By creating us, he defines all our actions. Although from our point of view, we appear to have free will, we do not: God created the universe such that this afternoon, I made myself a cup of milky tea. Had god created me differently, I would have made myself a cup of strong tea. But because god could have created the universe in any way he desired, and because god was omniscient of the effects of that creation, the decision to create me such that this afternoon, I would make milky tea was God's. Yes, I 'choose' to make my te milky, but I only make that choice because God created me that way. The distinction between illusion of free will and actuality is not important in some situations (i.e. for practical in-the-system purposes), but it can be important when considering the viability of a god. Namely, that god deliberately created humans knowing that we would do evil: either we have an immoral god or a non-omnipotent one or a non-omniscient one.

Hence the Euripides argument. What I want to see is if Gunwounds agrees that God is not omniscient.

A point I want to make about the right of worship is that there is no inherent right if you are the creator. I have some standards on what or who I might worship, and if a little kid deity one day created the universe by whim to play a little experiment then why should he be worshiped? What if he had ill intentions? What if his conduct to his experiment was negligent? What if he decides to wipe his experiment out with, say, a flood, by his own hand and start over? Why should that being be worshiped?

But let's make one thing clear: I would be absolutely appreciate of the gift of life, but I would not worship him. There is a difference between appreciation and worship.

And your mexican analogy Guns is ridiculous. You don't know for sure. You might see something on the menu that is much more appealing. You might see that they raised the price and thus get a cheaper meal. Your analogy is so flawed it boggles how you thought that was sufficiently analogous to mine. God knows for sure everything we do. Like nema said, he created everything knowing what choices would thus be consequenced. There is no free will.

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Does the gift of life extend to all organisms in a taoist sense, or dominion of god's faithful over nature in the Judaeo/Christian/Moslem sense (punishing floods, plagues etc notwithstanding?)

I admire vegans but I could never be one. I admire self-sustaining tribal people but I could never be one. I admire aspects of civilisation but I do not reckon we as a species or as people are civilised or special as much as trained. Hence my questions about spiritual order, and "universal" ethics. Exceptions don't prove or necessarily disprove rules, but origins tend to. Creation is simply too convenient an explanation.

Does life ever cease to be a gift? What part does consciousness, sentience and ultimately, talent and philosophy play in ascribing value? Is there a pecking order? At what point do we draw lines to distinguish absurd notion from high principle? At what point does survival instinct cut in, and at what point does, if ever or always, instinct take over from learnt training? Do the lives of others ever cease to be a gift? If one has a spirit that is rendered unto god at death, is one's life really a gift, or just a loan? I can see a justification for spirituality in this question that, as an atheist I am perfectly happy with as a metaphor for a harmless life lived generously. In this sense, that higher contemplative level of existence would be something to be discovered if not aspired to. It would not suggest, however, a natural metaphysical order, other than a very personal, individual "way". Overall, this is to me a reasonable explanation for the concept of original sin, but to my mind it disproves more fervently than ever, the possibility of the divine, but yet exalts the endless possibilities and subtlety of atoms.

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Why better?

Why be created?

Because this was the context of Nema's answer.

Your reply is a bit large in scope... there are entire thread on "does God exist" and "does better exist" and we'd go off-topic.

The start can often be that being nice with other is better than to kidnap someone for his money and torture him. Some will bring that having this to be all over the world implies God, and some not really.

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Hence the Euripides argument. What I want to see is if Gunwounds agrees that God is not omniscient.

A point I want to make about the right of worship is that there is no inherent right if you are the creator. I have some standards on what or who I might worship, and if a little kid deity one day created the universe by whim to play a little experiment then why should he be worshiped? What if he had ill intentions? What if his conduct to his experiment was negligent? What if he decides to wipe his experiment out with, say, a flood, by his own hand and start over? Why should that being be worshiped?

But let's make one thing clear: I would be absolutely appreciate of the gift of life, but I would not worship him. There is a difference between appreciation and worship.

And your mexican analogy Guns is ridiculous. You don't know for sure. You might see something on the menu that is much more appealing. You might see that they raised the price and thus get a cheaper meal. Your analogy is so flawed it boggles how you thought that was sufficiently analogous to mine. God knows for sure everything we do. Like nema said, he created everything knowing what choices would thus be consequenced. There is no free will.

My example wasnt flawed, acriku... when i was in college every single time i went to that particular restaurant i ALWAYS got cheese dip and a sweet tea.  And i know that the price isnt gonna jump up or that i will find sometihng more appealing.  I'm quite capable of knowing whether i will order the "usual"  ... The example is solid and Nema's response was more appropriate than yours, I agree with Nema that knowledge of the future doesnt preclude free will.  

And Nema i understand that God created you and you drink milky tea.  However, God doesnt puppeteer you thru the making and drinking of the tea, He created you and then let go.  And even if your actions are determined by genetics that God gave you that doesnt mean we should fear that we are robots.  That is a confusion of "explanation" with "exculpation".  Responsibility doesn't require behavior to be uncaused, as long as behaviour responds to praise and blame.

John Locke took the view that the truth of determinism was irrelevant. He believed that the defining feature of voluntary behavior was that individuals have the ability to postpone a decision long enough to reflect or deliberate upon the consequences of a choice.

Compatibilists (they believe that deterrminism and free will are compatible) argue that determinism is a prerequisite for moral responsibility. Society cannot hold someone responsible unless his actions were determined by something. This argument can be traced back to Hume. If indeterminism is true, then those events that are not determined are random. It is doubtful that one can praise or blame someone for performing an action generated spontaneously by his nervous system. Instead, one needs to show how the action stemmed from the person's desires and preferences

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Its the kidnap and torture to suppress ideas that's more galling.

God fails the paradox test in my mind because whilst man might imply god or not imply god, god as a concept doesn't imply man except except according to the specific designs of man.

God fails the paradox test?  Doesnt make much sense to exclude the existence of a God based off of a silly test created by a mortal.

Creation is simply too convenient an explanation.

Things are either created or have always existed.  Neither one is more convenient than the other.

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Does the gift of life extend to all organisms in a taoist sense, or dominion of god's faithful over nature in the Judaeo/Christian/Moslem sense (punishing floods, plagues etc notwithstanding?)

Does life ever cease to be a gift?  If one has a spirit that is rendered unto god at death, is one's life really a gift, or just a loan?

but to my mind it disproves more fervently than ever, the possibility of the divine, but yet exalts the endless possibilities and subtlety of atoms.

I'd say the gift of life is a gift but it must be used responsibly.  In other words you are given the gift but if you misuse it then you are held accountable.  If you didnt misuse it you are given an even greater gift.

For instance if i give you a expensive bottle of vodka, and you guzzle it down and drive 200 mph on the highway and wreck while drunk driving.  Then you will be punished.  If you enjoyed the vodka responsibly then I will see that you are responsible enough to handle the gift and i will then give you the keys to the vodka plant.

If we misuse the gift of life here we will not get the greater gift of eternal life.  So it is a gift to be enjoyed... but like the liquor commercial says... enjoy it responsibly.

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For the gift thing... well I see the gift as truly given (because of goodness as part of perfection) and then I do what I want with it... including messing myself up.

Its the kidnap and torture to suppress ideas that's more galling.

Whattever institutions and humans, it brings me ideas/else. I'd be God on Earth, I couldn't figure how to build a correct institution really hehe

But I was saying this as answer to relativist moral, people generally agreeing on extremes.

God fails the paradox test in my mind because whilst man might imply god or not imply god, god as a concept doesn't imply man except except according to the specific designs of man.

I never threaded the path of "does God imply man" really. The first reaction I got when reading about it was "UH?? Isn't that some language twist?" It seems to imply a definition of perfection and its actuality in our world as a start. But then the question is whether God is perfect as he is and doesn't move (= no humans) or if he's "dynamic" (not "dead and dry", = bringing free beings); plus some would bring that he is both (perhaps me...). I'm in no mood for defining the whole world for some rational twists so I'll spare myself the question for today ;)

In my case, man given the present world implies God: I guess referring to Plotinus would do.

Gravity/else and so on applies to my apple, and it applies to whattever other objects -> the world as a whole (or universal) has intelligence/laws.

Same goes for humans' sentience -> the universal is sentient.

I never met real opposition to that one... but I'm curious if you have :)

Darth: You know that you are bringing some fresh air and dynamism around? :P

People around get to know each other so... it's not like if there was the same fun and challenge of approaching where the other is situated that much :)

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For the gift thing... well I see the gift as truly given (because of goodness as part of perfection) and then I do what I want with it... including messing myself up.

Whattever institutions and humans, it brings me ideas/else. I'd be God on Earth, I couldn't figure how to build a correct institution really hehe

But I was saying this as answer to relativist moral, people generally agreeing on extremes.

I never threaded the path of "does God imply man" really. The first reaction I got when reading about it was "UH?? Isn't that some language twist?" It seems to imply a definition of perfection and its actuality in our world as a start. But then the question is whether God is perfect as he is and doesn't move (= no humans) or if he's "dynamic" (not "dead and dry", = bringing free beings); plus some would bring that he is both (perhaps me...). I'm in no mood for defining the whole world for some rational twists so I'll spare myself the question for today ;)

In my case, man given the present world implies God: I guess referring to Plotinus would do.

Gravity/else and so on applies to my apple, and it applies to whattever other objects -> the world as a whole (or universal) has intelligence/laws.

Same goes for humans' sentience -> the universal is sentient.

I never met real opposition to that one... but I'm curious if you have :)

Darth: You know that you are bringing some fresh air and dynamism around? :P

People around get to know each other so... it's not like if there was the same fun and challenge of approaching where the other is situated that much :)

The universal is sentient... I like the sound of that. I truly believe that the first cause has sentience, but with one greater than our own.

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"Never tell a man he ain't free. He'll kill you to prove you wrong."

Free will isn't a determinant of god's moral authority. One doesn't need a god to have free will. One doesn't need to cling to a very cheap promise of having one's consciousness cheat death in some spirit world to value life and virtue. One doesn't need fear of a hypothetical agony beyond death either.

These "carrots and sticks" have been around for millennia and have not significantly affected the carriage of justice by controlling behaviour. They have either inspired philanthropy or inspired gross injustices, either of which can be equally observed among believers and non-believers. They have not inspired adherence to right conduct, except as dictated to the meek or the oppressed.

Neither does moral authority depend creation, nor determinism, for reasons I've explored earlier. God's conduct alone is the determinant of any moral authority.

Is the more relevant concept "moral"? That's where the god myth gets nasty. Bibles, korans, books of mormon etc. Good/bad versus right/wrong versus pragmatism versus greater good versus survival. Invocation of the god myth, and man's written, unverified and translated interpretation of it to pursue earthly agendae... Wow, now there's an aspect for debate. A supreme being so completely complicit in his own misrepresentation? I've always struggled with this as a justifier for belief. The godliness of god. What is holy and what is profane? Wherein lies any authority if it be moral?

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My point was not "free will -> God" or "God -> anything that works is good" (life's not so simple), or even "any guy is theist -> he is more moral".

In this, God is about a (1) fully coherent (no discrepancies) and (2) sentient world. Unlike humans.

I know that for myself it is a motive for moral research not just aiming at myself. I never thought it as being "simply up to me" but rather "something inherent to the world" which I therefore needed to research.

Would you go to the point of saying that it didn't bring me towards defining and seeking morality?

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These are, however, points that a majority of extrovert Christians do make without ever being willing to be challenged on the subject. Each of us when posting does illustrate a wider viewpoint, even if we don't hold to it ourselves exclusively within narrow definitions. Many of them do claim a monopoly on morality, insight and especially  truth.

Better to find an inner morality and observe it than seek to define it. I would go to the point of saying you don't need faith and belief to follow an identical and parallel course of discovery. Which is more important, ethics or morality? In my own case, I found a more generous and harmless way outside of theism than within it. Moral codes derived from a traditional religious framework are inherent to world politics, and inherent to challenges to one's faith, but I don't think they are indivisible from independent personal reflection. In a world where god doesn't overtly reveal himself and his human representatives show themselves time and time again to be either untrustworthy or not up to the task, and so many interpretations of theistic "truth" abound, then yes, if one has integrity, it could only be "simply up to..." one to find a personal understanding, and to not shut the door to possibility. 

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The majority of extrovert Christians and anyone else (pro-science included) do that. It might discredit a litteral look at it (ie. science as dry and materialistic), but the more comprehensive traditions behind have less trouble with inter-disciplinarity (unlike "technical formulas" / "moral codes").

I guess that it has much to do with my syncretic tendency with "faith" in "searching truth". Overall, I see religion/science's earthly goal to be about giving us tools for being more moral and true: better tools should lead any human of integrity to be more moral/true... but authorities on whattever topic can lead and mislead.

I guess I've closed the topic on my side now :)

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First, i am more of a spiritual kind and not a religious person

Second, i do belive in "God" , but what one means by God ... varies alot, what i think about God is very different from what a religious christian means by God

Gods Moral Authority ...

In my opinion, the christians have misunderstood what "God" is and my biggest beef is that they belive there is this allpowerful being who created all this , who is morally PERFECT !!!!

And , get this now, he made it so that humans (made in the image of HIM ) are this bad grooked bunch and need to redeem themselves so they could be with him otherwise they are punished in hell of eternal suffering ........ i mean thats just LOL , seriously the Alpha and the Omega , the Origin of everything, the MORAL PERFECTNESS .... acts like a bully who had a tough childhood and is having hes vengenace upon us ????

Think about it for a second and realize, just how redicolous it sounds ...

People .... Make Love - not War

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