The Dangers of Replacement Theology and Thoroughly Jewish Calls and Insights

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In light of the recent Christ at the Checkpoint conference, Dr. Brown opens up the Scriptures and looks at Church history regarding the dangers of replacement theology. He will also take your Jewish-related calls. Listen live here 2-4 pm EST, and call into the show at (866) 348 7884 with your questions and comments.

 

Hour 1:

Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: The only reason the Jewish people exist on the earth is because God has kept His promises to us even when we were in unbelief! That tells you something about our God!

 

Hour 2:

Dr. Brown’s Bottom Line: Why is it that we want God to deal with the Church with grace, but we expect only justice from God for Israel? Doesn’t make sense does it!

 

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Other Resources:

Confronting “Christian” Anti-Zionism

Is There a Relationship Between Replacement Theology and Anti-Semitism?

Dr. Brown Talks With Scott Volk about Replacement Theology and Wrong Theological Concepts

81 Comments
  1. Van, I do have the same shred’s of evidence that pascal had. You know the evidence is right before your foolish self! A king would never ask a fool like you to give me proof of God- no, Pascal was asked. If you are not even going to lift your mind up and listen and understand, then no single person can help you. If you do not understand the Proverbs I gave you – you need to decide to either stay a fool, or learn. It is up to you, not me.

  2. Van, you are demonstrating the untenable dichotomy between your beliefs and what you say is your practice:

    1. You admit you take orders from no one, and your god is your belly.
    2. Then you assert “I don’t hate Christians. We atheists say, Love the Christian, hate the Christianity.”

    What enables you to love, when you have no higher concern for yourself? Best you could say is that, in order to remain consistent with your stated view of god, “Love” has become a very degenerate form treating others in a way that will maximize your own benefit.

    I will address your longer post later point by point, but the above is most central.

    What say you?

  3. Van, starting from near the bottom
    1. “The Bible contains many contradictions and historical inaccuracies”

    Name two of each, please. Historically, the jewish/christian scriptures are shown to be very reliable, and new archeological discoveries have only reinforced the quality of these records. Reference Sir William Ramsay, and his studies of Luke’s Gospel and the book of Acts.

    2. “Atheists are no less happy or fortunate than believers and usually more so.”

    The opposite has been shown true in many studies and personal testimonies. Reference one,

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2013/12/22/religion-is-good-for-all-of-us-even-those-who-dont-follow-one/

    Keep in mind that atheism as a world view has spawned some of the most radical and murderous regimes known to us (Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Pol-Pot…) And no matter how you slice it, Hitler was at best following a perverted cult and wanted nothing of the Messiah Jesus whose truth is contained in the Bible.

  4. Van, would I be fair if I said that since men have a history of being intolerant and violent, then that is absolute proof that a good man with powers of persuasion does not in fact exist?

    What kind of reasoning would that be? It would be stupid of me to make such a statement and be sincere about it.

    Yet this is the kind of argument you come up with to say that God does not exist.

    What you are really proving to the world is that the judgments of God are in fact in effect in the earth, just as he speaks in his word about foolish men, and how they are deprived of wisdom and good sense.

    So go ahead and continue to try to prove that God does not exist. Not only is heaven laughing, but it seems to me that you are proving the existence of God better than I can do.

  5. “Van, I do have the same shred’s of evidence that pascal had. You know the evidence is right before your foolish self!”

    > What evidence? I shouldn’t have to point out that I already demonstrated to you why Pascal’s argument is flawed and why it is just dumb. True to form for a Bible believer you ignored the objection to your argument and repeated your argument again as if no objection to it was raised. Well I object. A person cannot sincerely believe something just to be on the safe side and so the absurdity of Pascal’s wager is in the fact that it is impossible to put into practice. You fell for this stupid argument and you’re calling me a fool. That’s just too funny. How arrogant can you get?

    “A king would never ask a fool like you to give me proof of God- no, Pascal was asked. If you are not even going to lift your mind up and listen and understand, then no single person can help you. If you do not understand the Proverbs I gave you – you need to decide to either stay a fool, or learn. It is up to you, not me.”

    > You believe in all sorts of magic and fairy creatures for which there exists not even the tiniest shred of evidence and you have the nerve to call someone else a fool. What’s it like seeing proof there is no God and not being able to do a thing about it except type silly comments and hurl insults?

    MattB
    “Van, you are demonstrating the untenable dichotomy between your beliefs and what you say is your practice:
    1. You admit you take orders from no one, and your god is your belly.
    2. Then you assert “I don’t hate Christians. We atheists say, Love the Christian, hate the Christianity.”
    What enables you to love, when you have no higher concern for yourself? Best you could say is that, in order to remain consistent with your stated view of god, “Love” has become a very degenerate form treating others in a way that will maximize your own benefit.
    I will address your longer post later point by point, but the above is most central.
    What say you?”

    > I say you have no argument so you’re just making stuff up, making strawman arguments. I don’t have a god and I never said I had no higher concern than myself. To me love means affection, sharing thoughts and feelings, caring accepting, forgiving, empathizing touching listening, giving, respecting, helping, appreciating, supporting, and so on. The development of intimacy in human relations involves increasing levels of self-disclosure and mutual acceptance based on equal standing. However for you love has nothing to do with these things but rather what you call love is really just the mental activity of adhering to a code. You love other sinners because God loves sinners and you are commanded to follow God. For you human love is fickle and empty and only agape, love that is from God is acceptable. This is a strange kind of love if you ask me. Perhaps you should find out what love really is before you even begin to talk about the subject. You can’t love life if you think you have another one and you can’t love people when you are groveling to an imaginary deity. As it is with science, love is something Bible believers know absolutely nothing about.

    MattB
    March 28th, 2014 @ 11:21 am
    Van, starting from near the bottom
    1. “The Bible contains many contradictions and historical inaccuracies”
    Name two of each, please. Historically, the jewish/christian scriptures are shown to be very reliable, and new archeological discoveries have only reinforced the quality of these records. Reference Sir William Ramsay, and his studies of Luke’s Gospel and the book of Acts.

    > Oh please. In the very first words of the Bible we have a huge scientific blunder. It says that the earth was created at the same time as everything else. Our universe has been in its present form expanding for about 14 billion years and our planet has only existed for about 4.5 billion years. The Bible says vegetation was on the earth before the sun and moon existed. Ridiculous. Was Adam created before or after the animals? The Bible says both. It says humans were vegetarians first and later became meat eaters, exactly the opposite of what we know from science to be true. Genesis 9:3 and Leviticus 11:4 differ about what is proper to eat. In Job 11:9 it says that the heaven’s measurements are “… longer than the earth and broader than the sea”. How long is a sphere? There is no length to a sphere. A flat two dimensional object has length which is how the earth is described in the Bible many times and in many ways. If you think there are no contradictions in the Bible then you won’t mind telling me the name of Solomon’s mother and ger father’s name. Who killed Goliath or incited David to take a census? Was Jesus crucified before or after the Passover meal? If the Bible weren’t full of errors, inconsistencies, major scientific blunders and general silliness there would be no need for the field of apologetics.

    2. “Atheists are no less happy or fortunate than believers and usually more so.”
    The opposite has been shown true in many studies and personal testimonies. Reference one,
    http://www.forbes.com/sites/jeffreydorfman/2013/12/22/religion-is-good-for-all-of-us-even-those-who-dont-follow-one

    > These polls say nothing about the honesty of the people being questioned. My experience tells me the atheists answered the questions honestly but when many of the religious people realized the subject of the poll they answered the questions dishonestly, ever conscious of their religious agenda. Your experience tells you this as well. I’ve been listening to Christian radio and watching it on TV and I see the pain, the misery, the suffering, I hear the fear in the voices. Atheists just don’t have all these emotional problems stemming from trying to believe what isn’t true.

    “Keep in mind that atheism as a world view has spawned some of the most radical and murderous regimes known to us (Lenin, Stalin, Mao, Pol-Pot…) And no matter how you slice it, Hitler was at best following a perverted cult and wanted nothing of the Messiah Jesus whose truth is contained in the Bible.”

    > Atheism is not a worldview. You are dishonestly conflating communism with atheism in order to distort reality. In other words you’re just repeating the lies of Christian apologists who just make stuff up for a living. The human rights abuses in the communist regimes you mentioned stemmed from the leader’s power grabbing political goals and ambitions, not from any kind of atheistic or anti-religion ideology. And don’t forget why millions of people starved to death in Russia. The communists rejected evolutionary biology in favor of Lysenkoism a form of pseudo-science based not on data and evidence but on ideology. Just like your magic of Intelligent Design it doesn’t work.

  6. And Hitler was Christian who, according to Christian doctrine, has gone be to be with the Lord. Like Jesus, Hitler roasted those who disagreed with him. After all the Bible says to be like Jesus.

  7. Van I like your definition of love very much. Funny, but its much in line with all of the scriptures- so how did this love come about?

    You are living, or choosing to live, in complete dissonant inconsistency with the belief that there is no god. Because if no creator God, then no basis for real love or morals. You’ve heard that before- and no atheist or non-theist has ever given satisfactory answer.

    You aim to love, because you are created in the image of the living God.

    I also accept your claim that I am not living as well as I ought- but God’s spirit in me is constantly changing me for the better. I do wish to love as God has given great love to me through his Son.

    BTW- Atheists wish to claim that it is not a world view- that flies in the face of everything that is then said and done. Your belief in no god definitely defines how you see the world and act therein.

    The communist regimes I mentioned were based on No God- the unfettered evil followed from there.

    Hitler did not follow Christian doctrine at all, he was not a follower of Christ. Did you ever read anything that he or those he gathered around him wrote? Talk of “Christ” but a different one altogether. Basic history here.

  8. Van answer this- if an atheist is so concerned about the poor, the starving, the suffering- why aren’t hundreds of thousands of non-believers such as you joining the many thousands of Christians who are boots on the ground, money to the ready, to help and serve such humanity? Where are the “atheist” hospitals? Where are the “atheist” relief organizations?

    Another question- so you don’t accept research about religion and happiness, because it does not fit what you’ve come to believe- sounds like your world view is afoul of the science.

  9. Van, what you are telling us is that God’s ways are much higher than your ways, and his knowledge is past your ability to find it out. In that I completely agree with you.

  10. “Because if no creator God, then no basis for real love or morals. You’ve heard that before- and no atheist or non-theist has ever given satisfactory answer.”

    > This is what I hate about religion. The hihacking of morality, marriage and love. All of these things existed long before anyone heard anything about any God, the Hebrews or the Christians or the Bible. Morals are based on the value of human life itself. That which protects and enhances life is termed “good” and that which harms or destroys life is “evil.” You believers have no basis for morality at all because your morality is based on the whims of a deity for which there is no evidence and which is not constrained in any manner as to the commands it gives. So if God commands murder, rape and stealing as the Bible says God did then those atrocities all of a sudden become good. This Divine Command morality is completely insane and dangerous. Killing in the name of God is a pretty good definition of insanity of you ask any rational person. So your statement is absolutely false as are the rest of your ridiculous claims.
    You have a real problem telling the truth. But when your entire worldview is based on the biggest lies ever told that is par for the course.

  11. “Morals are based on the value of human life itself.”

    A true statement. I think that one of the big points of theism is that God’s moral values are much higher than our own.

    Atheists don’t believe in God or that a God exists so doesn’t that make morals something that everyone makes up for themselves based on the value of human life even if they don’t value human life as much as you? But why are some things wrong for everyone as if morals are not made up by us because we can violently disagree with those who cross that line.

  12. “Van I like your definition of love very much. Funny, but its much in line with all of the scriptures- so how did this love come about?”

    > Science has answered this question. Love evolved as a necessity. Mothers have loved their young long before there were any humans on this planet. You wouldn’t have to ask questions like that if you just put down the fairy tales and picked up a science book for a change. However I don’t think you want the real answers to your questions. You’re just hoping I won’t have a good answer for something and then you can fill in the blanks with Jesus. I know what you’re doing. It’s the Great Commission.

    “You are living, or choosing to live, in complete dissonant inconsistency with the belief that there is no god. Because if no creator God, then no basis for real love or morals. You’ve heard that before- and no atheist or non-theist has ever given satisfactory answer.”

    > Now this is at least the second time I have shot down this argument for you. I remember doing it a few months or so ago. Read my response which points out that morality is based on the value of human life and then if you have an objection to that let’s see it.

    “You aim to love, because you are created in the image of the living God.”

    > Wrong. I am a mammal, the product of evolution by natural selection. And so are you. Now let’s go along with all the biologists and anthropologists for a moment and accept that this is indeed true. How would this change your life? What would you do differently if you came to accept this proposition? Would you still hope that you could change for the better as your statement below talks about doing?

    “I also accept your claim that I am not living as well as I ought- but God’s spirit in me is constantly changing me for the better. I do wish to love as God has given great love to me through his Son.”

    > If Jesus is God then who is this son you speak of? In your own words explain that to me.

    “BTW- Atheists wish to claim that it is not a world view- that flies in the face of everything that is then said and done. Your belief in no god definitely defines how you see the world and act therein.”

    > If that were true then all atheists would have the same worldview. But they don’t. I disagree with other atheists about various subjects. Some atheists are staunch conservatives while others are liberal. Some atheists support a women’s right to a safe abortion and other atheists do not. Some atheists hate religion but the majority of atheists just don’t care about religion at all. I know an atheist who thinks we should close all the national parks and auction the land to bidders. So there are nutty atheists. The one thing atheists do seem to have in common is their ability to stay out of federal prison. 2 out of every 1000 in our federal prisons claim to be atheists. So much for the Christian argument from morality. So, wrong again Matt. Whatever worldview we atheists have it isn’t looking out between bars. It seems only religious people get that worldview. Pretty funny.

    “The communist regimes I mentioned were based on No God- the unfettered evil followed from there.”

    > The God of Christianity was just replaced by the State. So instead of God it was the State that was supposedly all-wise, all-good, and all-powerful. So communism is just as nutty as Christianity with its pie-in-the-sky promises and utopian fantasies. An atheistic society would look somewhat like what we see in Scandinavia or Iceland where the majority of the population is atheist. These people have a higher standard of living than we do, less crime, less poverty, free higher education, free health care, happier people who have more personal freedom than we have in our country. Frightening isn’t it?

    “Hitler did not follow Christian doctrine at all, he was not a follower of Christ. Did you ever read anything that he or those he gathered around him wrote? Talk of “Christ” but a different one altogether. Basic history here.”

    > The writings you speak of were proved to be rank Christian forgeries decades ago. Christians in this country supported Hitler right up until the war when there was a big collective whoops by the Christians. Then they went about trying to cover their immediate past and cover up Hitler’s Christianity and his preaching about Jesus. “”I believe that I am acting in accordance with the will of the Almighty Creator; by defending myself against the Jews, I am fighting for the Lord… I would like to than Providence and the Almighty for choosing me of all people.” – Adolf Hitler (1889-1945) The Nazis took pains to portray Jesus as a blond Aryan and certainly no Jew. Hostile to Christianity? Hahaha sure, tell me another one.

    MattB
    “Van answer this- if an atheist is so concerned about the poor, the starving, the suffering- why aren’t hundreds of thousands of non-believers such as you joining the many thousands of Christians who are boots on the ground, money to the ready, to help and serve such humanity?”

    > I donate time and money to a program that feeds hungry children in the metropolitan area where I live.We atheists are not interested in handing out Bibles and preaching to people who are starving.I have seen and heard how missionaries operate and it’s despicable, a crime against humanity. No one gets anything until they are made aware that whatever God they worship has let them down and the Christian God is what is responsible for the free food and whatever they are getting. People are often actually made to verbally thank and pray to Jesus for food and are constantly prodded and asked who is now providing for them. People who answer correctly will get more than those who do not. This is what missionaries go to school to learn how to do. I know this for a fact as I’ve seen it in action and know about their classes at the Missionary Learning Center near where I live. The Peace Corps was formed to undo all the damage Christian missionaries had done in the past. “Missionaries are perfect nuisances and leave every place worse than they found it.” – Charles Dickens. “The pioneers and missionaries of religion have been the real cause of more trouble and war than all the other classes of mankind.” – Edgar Allan Poe. And you wonder why I hate religion.

    “Where are the “atheist” hospitals? Where are the “atheist” relief organizations?”

    > Are you kidding? Have you never heard of Doctors Without Borders, Goodwill Industries, Amnesty International, The Rotary, Wheelchair Foundation, United Nation’s Children’s Fund or any of the other secular charities? Its’ pretty funny to hear you tell us that we are only 3 percent of the population and then claim that we aren’t doing our share. Anything you can do we can do better. Way better.

    “Another question- so you don’t accept research about religion and happiness, because it does not fit what you’ve come to believe- sounds like your world view is afoul of the science.

    > No, it doesn’t pass my own eye and ear test Dude. I hear the unhappiness and misery in the voices of the people who call shows like Line of Fire. I know too many unhappy and angry Christians for me to believe that Christians are happier than everyone else. The opposite is true and you know this yourself. So stop.

    “Van, what you are telling us is that God’s ways are much higher than your ways, and his knowledge is past your ability to find it out. In that I completely agree with you.”

    > My ways are much higher than God’s. I am not a murderer. Christians worship a murderer and do it only because they are afraid of this murderer. Well I’m not afraid.

    “Atheists don’t believe in God or that a God exists so doesn’t that make morals something that everyone makes up for themselves based on the value of human life even if they don’t value human life as much as you? But why are some things wrong for everyone as if morals are not made up by us because we can violently disagree with those who cross that line.”

    > Your argument is great example of how Christianity tries to take exclusive possession of an entire area fundamental to human existence by proclaiming for no good reason that without its teachings people cannot behave like a human beings. This is simply not true. Atheists are moral because they want to be. Christian morality is lacking because it offers no better reason to behave than the promise of reward and the threat of punishment. Rather than encouraging people to seek the best moral option through reason and empathy, a biblical worldview promotes dogmatism, blind submission to authority and intolerance of differing opinions. Rather than teaching that we are morally mature and have the capability to do right, Christianity teaches that we are all hopeless sinners incapable of controlling ourselves. Your religion actually denies the value of doing good for its own sake.

    Okay, now I answered your questions. In regard to your last question, what things are wrong for everyone all the time? What lines may we never cross?

  13. Van,

    I believe that Jesus loves us and wants to help us by making a merciful and joyful way for us in life. Morality is a big issue but I think poverty is a more important topic for discussion. Many die from poverty and what joy can you give the dying?

    An example of a wrong that is unacceptable is the wrongful torture of the Jewish people at the Holocaust.

  14. Van, we’re getting way off track here- but a couple responses:
    1. your “atheists in prison” stats are at highly questionable at best- or total bupkis. See this ATHEIST website for discussion:

    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/07/16/what-percentage-of-prisoners-are-atheists-its-a-lot-smaller-than-we-ever-imagined/

    2. Way off topic, but Hitler was a cultist, not christian. He talked of the divine but was not even attempting to follow the Living God of the bible. Serious historians do not doubt this and again, his own writings in their full make it very plain.

    3. The “atheist” organizations you listed are secular perhaps, but not founded by or populated by people who believed God did not exist, exclusively. The arguement goes nowhere.

    Your opinions about the damage done by Christians around the world are not upheld by FACTS.

    On the truth of the Bible, and Jesus Messiah,
    1. The “contradiction” in Genesis creation account is not one at all, and any scholar of any bent agrees that the discussion is of creation overall, and then details about man, the garden, and following. There is no contradictory order in these chapters, and its absurd to believe the author was so sloppy as to put down such a contradiction as the contrived one you (and many others) have put forward here.

    2. Science has actually shown that so-called meat-eating animals kinds consumed vegetation. Some cause for adaptation allowed or forced them to shift to animals.

    Still you’ve no argument for Jesus existence, life, death on a Roman cross of execution, or the events following. No discussion of Luke’s writings and the historical accuracy?

  15. R. Kneubuhl
    “I believe that Jesus loves us and wants to help us by making a merciful and joyful way for us in life. Morality is a big issue but I think poverty is a more important topic for discussion. Many die from poverty and what joy can you give the dying?”

    > The assurance that when they die that is the end of their lives. They will not be judged by a vengeful God and thrown into hell to be tortured for the supposed crime of unbelief. Nor will they be bored silly in heaven. To an atheist heaven sounds even worse than hell.

    “An example of a wrong that is unacceptable is the wrongful torture of the Jewish people at the Holocaust.”

    > Great example of Christians doing something wrong in the name of Jesus. The Nazis were Christians and the Nazi Party still requires their members to be Bible believing creationist Christians. The proof is in the pudding. The Nazis fight against abortion, gay marriage and anything the president does. Just like you.

    MattB
    Van, we’re getting way off track here- but a couple responses:
    1. your “atheists in prison” stats are at highly questionable at best- or total bupkis. See this ATHEIST website for discussion:
    http://www.patheos.com/blogs/friendlyatheist/2013/07/16/what-percentage-of-prisoners-are-atheists-its-a-lot-smaller-than-we-ever-imagined/

    > Did you read the whole article? Obviously not. It turns out that the percentage of atheists in prison is even smaller than I said. Atheists make better citizens and no one can deny that fact.

    2. Way off topic, but Hitler was a cultist, not christian. He talked of the divine but was not even attempting to follow the Living God of the bible. Serious historians do not doubt this and again, his own writings in their full make it very plain.

    > Your definition of “serious historians” is actually the Christian historical revisionists who desperately attempt to deny Hitler’s Christianity and love for Jesus with lies and distortions. Real historians just have to look at what Hitler did and said. Hitler denied evolutionary theory and made sure the German public schools taught biblical creationism instead. This is so easy to verify because the German public schools continued to teach Christian creationism until 1960. By then there was only one other public school system in the world left teaching creationist garbage and that was in South Africa. So we see what kind if ideology teaching Christian creationism breeds: hate, racism, intolerance and bigotry, just a few of YOUR favorite things.

    3. The “atheist” organizations you listed are secular perhaps, but not founded by or populated by people who believed God did not exist, exclusively. The arguement goes nowhere.
    Your opinions about the damage done by Christians around the world are not upheld by FACTS.

    > It’s upheld by my own witness and the witness of many former missionaries who lost their faith in the field precisely because of the way missionaries were trained to treat those in need. Sorry Dude, you gave up your right to appeal to facts when you became a person of faith and started denying established facts.

    On the truth of the Bible, and Jesus Messiah,
    1. The “contradiction” in Genesis creation account is not one at all, and any scholar of any bent agrees that the discussion is of creation overall, and then details about man, the garden, and following. There is no contradictory order in these chapters, and its absurd to believe the author was so sloppy as to put down such a contradiction as the contrived one you (and many others) have put forward here.

    > The Bible gets the order of creation backwards. It says vegetation was on the earth before the sun and moon even existed. There is no more stupid book than the Bible.

    2. Science has actually shown that so-called meat-eating animals kinds consumed vegetation. Some cause for adaptation allowed or forced them to shift to animals.

    > Science has shown no such thing. Your hatred for science forces you to lie about it. The lions’s fangs were never for eating veggies. How silly can you get? First graders know more about nature than you do! Hilarious.

    Still you’ve no argument for Jesus existence, life, death on a Roman cross, no execution, or the events following. No discussion of Luke’s writings and the historical accuracy?

    > In Myths of Persecution, the author proves that the Romans did not use crucifixion as a method of punishment and they did not put innocent people to death either. The whole story of the trial of Jesus is completely unbelievable and smells of religious nonsense rather than history. There’s no evidence for this trial, no evidence for any crucifixion, no evidence of any tomb, empty or otherwise and no evidence that Jesus or any apostles including Paul ever even existed. We’ve been over this before. Fictional narratives almost always mention real places and real people and sometimes real events. That the Bible does this is of no help to your case. Historical narratives never contain extended conversations with people all speaking to each other in complete sentences. You’ll never find one single historical narrative anywhere that contains the kind of dialog we find in Luke or anywhere else in the Bible, not to mention historical narratives full of tales of the supernatural. What you have are hysterical narratives, not historical narratives.

    Once we read about magic and fairies the narrative must be classified as fantasy unless proved otherwise. There is nothing, no evidence of any kind outside of the Bible that could even hint that something in the Bible, ANYTHING in the Bible even might be true. Not a single thing. The stories in the Bible and the existence of the major figures described in the Bible cannot be verified using sources independent of the Bible. That is a fact you’ll always have to live with until it just eats away at your faith until you can no longer believe. So you might as well just chuck it all now and taste that freedom that comes from using some common sense for a change.

    The first step to recovery is admitting you have a problem. You need to check out Fundamentalists Anonymous. There they will help you rid yourself of your insane superstitions. Repeat this a few times: “I realize that I had turned control of my mind over to another person or group, who had assumed power over my thinking.” Turn the radio dial to ESPN start enjoying a life free of fear and intellectual servitude to false beliefs. It’s opening day Man. Even the Bible talks about this: In the big inning…. Go Orioles.

  16. “Just like you.”

    Van, you don’t know me and you don’t know what I believe and stand for.

  17. R. Kneubuhl

    I suggest you ignore Van and not let him lead you down any of his paths. He keeps popping up under different pseudonyms. I’m not sure why he keeps haunting this blog. He is not only an atheist but an anti-Theist. There are good reasons from a logical philosophical point of view for belief in God that starts with the fact that something exists. Van lives under the delusion that he has defeated these arguments. If you are interested Norman Geisler has written volumes on the topics. One good resource is book the “Philosophy of Religion”. He has looked at the arguments and counter arguments. Since UNLIKE VAN he has a Ph.D. in philosophy, has interacted and debated with some of the brightest atheists and has been teaching for 50 years, his arguments are sound and logically valid. So rest assured despite Van’s posturing his counterarguments have been answered. Christianity has a firm foundation.

    As far Van’s basis for morals goes (the sanctity of life), I have repeatedly challenged him to defend it, and the best he can come up with in his defense, is an ad hominem response, where he says that he would not “expect a Bible Thumper to understand”. That hardly answered my objections.

    Van’s facts are also often in error. He misstates the first law of thermodynamics and then uses it against Theists. In fact, he has stated above that Atheists are no less happy or fortunate than believers and usually more so”. But this is not what the studies show. The facts: “In the majority of studies, religious involvement is correlated with well being, happiness and life satisfaction; hope and optimism; purpose and meaning in life; higher self-esteem; better adaptation to bereavement; greater social support and less loneliness; lower rates of depression and faster recovery from depression; lower rates of suicide and fewer positive attitudes towards suicide; less anxiety; less psychosis, and fewer psychotic tendencies; lower rates of alcohol and drug use and abuse; less delinquency and criminal activity; greater marital stability and satisfaction…we concluded that for the vast majority of people the apparent benefits of devout religious belief and practice probably outweigh the risks.”

    American Journal of Public Health–meta-analysis of epidemiological studies on the psychological effects of religious beliefs.

    Van under one of his alter egos said that Einstein’s theories led Einstein to be an atheist. And yet here is what Einstein said: “The harmony of natural law…reveals an intelligence of such superiority that, compared with it, all the systematic thinking and acting of human beings is an utterly insignificant reflection.” It is rather amazing that he Van can get so many facts wrong! Perhaps he should investigate the original sources rather than just troll the internet and cut and paste nonsense.

    Van puts all religions in the same pot so to speak. So when one religious group commits a crime it shows that all religions are bad. Van also fails to discern the difference between true followers of Jesus and those who follow in name only, such that if someone who CLAIMS to be a Christian commits some atrocity, then the religion as a whole must be bad. There are so many problems with Van’s analysis of the things he talks about that it is difficult to list them all.

    Van did get one thing right in his above diatribe, “To an atheist heaven sounds even worse than hell”. C.S. Lewis would agree with him. The gates of hell are locked from the inside.

    Given the above points, I would suggest that you all just ignore Van and perhaps he will go away. He has made up his mind and it will not be changed by showing him the facts. As the American philosopher William James once said, (Paraphrase), the mind will never accept something the heart does not want.

  18. Van, you’ve postulated but not proven a discrepency in the biblical account of creation wrt timeline. I’ve given defense of an alleged but non-existent discrepency.

    The facts about Hitler are from his OWN WRITINGS as well as observations or writings of those around him. Not revisionist. And who cares what Hitler believed about evolution- though he was a fan of Darwin and others – it gave “support” for his superior race nonsense.

    Oh Van, do you really believe that the Romans in and around first century didn’t use crucifixtion as punishment and deterrent? Is that your best refutation that Jesus lived and taught and died and RESURRECTED just as the bible records? Again, what do you say in response to the findings of Luke’s historicity (Acts and his Gospel)?

    One more time Van- are you a qualified scientist? You disagree with science that you don’t like- if you even understand it at all (the social sciences used to guide studies on religious-vs-nonreligious people). Your opinion is your own.

  19. “Van, you don’t know me and you don’t know what I believe and stand for.”

    > I sure do. You believe in fairies and magic and you stand for nothing. You grovel on your knees to an imaginary male authority figure.

    I shouldn’t have to point out that all you people who insist Jesus was a real person have not presented one shred of evidence from outside the Bible that he was. Because there isn’t any. So you tell me about all the people who believe Jesus was real. Hilarious.

  20. While I suggested that Van be ignored, and have no intention of personally interacting with him, when he says ridiculous things that may disturb new believers I may chime in on occasion to set the record straight.

    For those who think Van may have a point about Jesus’ existence, ONCE AGAIN, he has his facts wrong. There are extra-Biblical sources. For example see Gary Habermas’ book “The Case for the Resurrection of Jesus”, where he discusses these sources. Of course by Van’s criteria there would be many people in antiquity which have even fewer and less reliable sources by which they are known. Thus, we should not believe they ever existed.

    But even if this were not extra-Biblical sources, it doesn’t matter. Implicit in Van’s statement is that because the authors of the NT believe in Jesus, they are biased and thus their testimony cannot be reliable. Let’s apply this logic to say the Holocaust. Some of the best witnesses to the atrocities that occurred were the Jews. But since they were victims and were biased, we should not believe them! Nonsense and more nonsense. Further, the motivation of those who died for Jesus in the earliest days need to be explained, especially those like Paul, who initially opposed Jesus. And some of the earliest deaths are known by extra-Biblical sources.

  21. Van, stick with one topic, given how much we can focus on here.

    Did the Romans use crucifixion as a form of pushishment in the time of the biblical accounts of Jesus? Was it well known and the details of the practice laid out in many “non biblical” annuls and historical records?

  22. Van,

    You claim you want evidence. You conveniently leave off the best evidence there is. You dismiss out of hand the 4 Gospels and the testimony of Paul which confirms the eyewitness accounts that they document. The historic backdrop of people, places and events are clearly identified in the New Testament. Instead of uncovering the truth (behind your myth) of the historic Jesus you opt for the easy way out. “He never existed.” How convenient for you. The most obvious flaw is that you begin with the premise that all of the First Testament is also a fabrication. That pretty much ensures that your investigation goes nowhere and it further confirms that you’re not to be taken seriously at all. You don’t see the blatant bias you bring to the investigation? You gullably believe everything the ridiculous revisionists spew out.

    You also dismiss the archaeological evidence that corroborate parts of the Bible. Why is that? You haven’t shown that you’ve undertaken any serious study of the facts. I gave you a link with at least 50 archaeological finds which are documented and known to exist yet you casually brush the truth of them aside. Your out of hand dismissive attitude shows the shallowness of your argument and that it doesn’t hold up in light of tangible corroborating evidence to the contrary.

    See these also:

    The inscription on a tablet found at Tel Dan, which dates to about 840 B.C.E., and clearly mentions a “House of David.”
    http://www.nelc.ucla.edu/Faculty/Schniedewind_files/Schniedewind_Tel_Dan_Stela.pdf
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tel_Dan_Stele

    An Egyptian inscription which also mentions the Israelites.
    http://www.historyofinformation.com/expanded.php?id=1883

    The Moabite king and the king of Israel. (Moabite Stone) Carbon 14 dated to the ninth century BC.

    http://www.jewishencyclopedia.com/articles/10899-moabite-stone

    Are there objectors to the ancient evidence? Of course. Anything which confirms the historicity of events described in the Bible are immediately suspect. (Surprise, surprise!)

    Let’s look at one of the greatest pieces of evidence we have. It’s more than fantastic that the over arching themes of the two Testaments, 66 books written by 39-40 different authors documenting a period of over 1500 years, would have remained intact throughout the pages of the Bible. It should be considered one of the greatest human feats of all time. — If for nothing more than the continuity of the consistent threads that run throughout the entire collection of writings. It’s a literary wonder unparalleled in human history! Of course it takes more than a cursory examination of the texts to uncover the depth of that truth. Let’s not forget that the writings have remained intact and unchanged for the last 2000. Otherwise I would have expected a myth to continue to morph and grow. Nothing’s been added and nothing’s been taken away from it in all that time. The Bible doesn’t claim to be a history book even though recent archaeology is uncovering documentation of a people known as Israelites and persons as mentioned in the Bible. That is tangible evidence. If it wasn’t the Israelites who wrote the Bible then who was it? You’d have to invent an answer to that question.

    And then there’s the wonder of the nation of people that wrote the book we know of as the Bible. That there is even a people group alive who have maintained their identity as the Hebrews of the Bible is astounding! They produced a long running record of a distinct people and they told their story of failures and triumphs in a most self-deprecating manner which is found nowhere else in ancient historical writings. Nations didn’t write about their exploits other than in a boastful, positive light. Their written story is one of a journey otherwise unheard of. They struggled continually with the monumental task of preserving their knowledge of the one true God and making Him known to all the world. As often as they were swayed to follow your mythical gods they always returned to the truth. It’s extraordinary that they were able to maintain their personal identity through it all. Their history is a record of God’s Word, not only to them, but all of mankind. Because of the Jews, God is still relevant today. That, in and of itself, is supernatural!

    Speaking of the Bible, you’ve got a really twisted understanding of Christian doctrine to believe that Hitler is basking in bliss! That’s a perverted interpretation of Scripture. Where does it say that someone can willfully murder another person, let alone millions of them, thereby profaning the name of the Lord, and not give an account of it?! Can’t find it anywhere.

    Jas 2: “For judgment is without mercy to the one who has shown no mercy.”

    Matthew A Tree Is Known by Its Fruit

    33 “Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree bad and its fruit bad, for the tree is known by its fruit. 34 For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. 35 The good person out of his good treasure brings forth good, and the evil person out of his evil treasure brings forth evil. 36 I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak

    I Never Knew You

    21 “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22 Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23 And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice iniquity!’

    Obviously Hitler was known for his rotten fruit!

    There were many ingredients that coalesced at the same time creating the environment out of which the holocaust grew. Were the people sitting in the pews of the churches at fault; Yes! Was the complacency of various governments at fault; Yes! You’re right, it was the darkest epoch in the history of Christianity. The belief of some that the Church had replaced Israel in the eyes of God only furthered the roots of anti-semitism. Unfortunately some of those same beliefs (of replacement theology) are still evident and anti-semitism is on the rise once again and we can’t afford to be silent!

    What you leave out, though, are the ideals and philosophies which were a part of the mindset of the people and dictators which dominated the first half of the 20th century. Hitler was convinced of the German’s superiority in the evolutionary chain and of biological heredity and he was determined to hurry the process along. Those the Nazi’s considered weak and reprobate were summarily executed together with the Jews. Hitler had a smorgasbord of ideologies from which he chose the ones he favored to justify his purposes. He was more than casually interested in the evolution of species as outlined by the popularity of social Darwinism and biological determinism. Most popular in Germany was Ludwig Büchner who wrote “The Power of Heredity and Its Influence on the Moral and Mental Progress of Humanity” (1882). Let’s be honest, though, Hitler was first and foremost a thoroughly evil and deeply demented fascist dictator who displayed none of the characteristics of a true Christian!

    It’s obvious the seedbed of the bloodiest epoch in human history was also underwritten in the pages of various authors of the day together with those from the late nineteenth century. Charles Darwin, Carl Marx, Engels, Freud and Nietzsche (etc.) collectively shaped the ideology of the generations who emerged from the Victorian era then weathered the “war to end all wars” and were afterwards faced with the subsequent economic hardships that fell on those nations. Into the social milieu following the first WW stepped the dictators armed with the new ideologies and theories which served to eliminate the spiritual aspect of man thereby diminishing the age old belief that man was created in the image of God and that the sanctity of life extended to all humanity. Hitler was only one of those who would color our world forever. In Germany, Italy and the Soviet Union, (etc.) the moral sensibilities of the populous were effectively put aside to make way for the radical upheaval of national socialism, various thoughts of utopia, and the diminishing of one’s conscience.

    Can you answer me one question please? Why did they target the Jews?

    Thank God that a deeply humbled Church has regained it’s footing. The true, worldwide Church was reborn from the ashes of the holocaust and however diminished in numbers we may be those who remain true to God and His Word are stronger than ever! As concerning Israel and the Jews, we have taken up our position as Watchmen on the Wall.

    A very thoughtful essay on “THE DEHUMANIZING IMPACT OF MODERN THOUGHT: DARWIN, MARX, NIETZSCHE, AND THEIR FOLLOWERS”
    By: Richard Weikart

    http://www.discovery.org/a/6301

  23. Van,

    Your own experiences in life is only one of the billions so stop acting like you’re right all the time.

  24. Van, I’m praying for you, and sincerely concerned you are not on the path to true knowledge, but destruction apart from your maker. I want you to have abundant life and joy that only come from cleansing from your sin. I cannot describe the gladness I have and continuous renewal in my heart- Jesus took my sin on Himself, and sent the Holy Spirit of the living God to walk with me alongside every day.

    I wish I could show you- but I know God can. I will be pulling for you. Meanwhile, I see that you are not interested in exploring answers to the objections you raise- only in showing your mastery over the Christians. Well, have at it if you must, if it gives you perverse joy.

  25. R. Kneubuhl,

    Yes, I believe you’re right. His thinly veiled hatred towards Christianity, is built on nothing more than vacuous diatribe lifted from various websites sponsored by people who believe they sit at the top of the intellectual food chain! It’s hatred of a certain people group disguised as atheism.

    Never find them occupying a place on an Islamic blog. Not acceptable. Christian bashing, however, is all the rage these days!

    So you don’t believe in God, Van, why then are you so obsessed with Him?

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