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how to turn a believer


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Being fair H_I, the thread is about WHY we converted from believing to non believing. Holes in the bible are very relevant to why some people drop Christianity.

 

jfb asked why we 'converted' - As I said before - it is very complex and personal for each, but here are some the reasons that lead to me dropping the myth:

 

Holes in the bible that I could no longer make excuses for.

Solid Scientific evidence for Evolution, which completely contradicts the bible (I went through a phase of believing the 7 days in Genesis were 7 'time periods'... but that is clutching at straws).

Real life contradictions to what is suppose to happen spiritually within the Christian belief.

Total lack of appearance by god to ever show his face beyond what can be put down to coincidental superstitious nonsense.

Discovery that there are many similar myths to the Christ one that came before.

The obvious use of religion by many to advance their political stance.

The demonstrations of many that explain how things like 'baptism in the holy ghost' and the like are psychological states and states of mind that can be replicated in non believers by simple suggestion, hypnosis or drugs.

 

These are just SOME of the reasons I changed my mind.

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Moderator Note

Sure, but you can discuss why you converted without this devolving into a debate about the inconsistencies of the bible, etc. it's related to the topic at hand, but it isn't the topic itself.

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The Bible itself, the churches, the faiths (belief systems, like yours specialising in science instead of humanity) and a whole lot more are evidence. Your claim is not just false, but hypocritical. S

I would say "Anyone who studies the bible 'for long enough' will soon see that it is full of holes"   If it IS the word of god, then this god make a lot of mistakes and is pretty harsh. It clearly i

There is one fundamental difference - physical evidence. Evidence of the senses. I am appalled that somebody cannot see this.   The expression "belief in science" attempts to place science on the sa

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The bible is the main reason people believe this stuff in the first place. Directly or indirectly. Maybe someone believes because of a friend or a relative's teachings/words, but then that person's faith still stems from the book. Pointing out the flaws and inconsistencies in the book is one way of converting someone as the book is pretty much the only evidence for the whole shebang.

 

When I was a believer, I would make so many excuses as to why certain parts of the bible were not relevant today, why god behaved like such an asshole in the OT, why 2 people reporting about the same event give different testimonies etc.. How it was possible for animals to talk and the dead to come back to life and for the blind to see. Why he allows so much suffering, yada yada... I would have said that you need to read it lead by the holy spirit and ignore the parts that had been corrupted by men... you can make excuse after excuse for god and the bible, but eventually you have to be honest to your self. If god is so great then he doesn't need you to fight his battles for him by trying to justify his horror, his failings and his reluctance to step up to the plate and do a god darn thing about anything. That way of thinking I now see as a totally backward way of thinking that is holding the world back from progressing towards peace, and ironically, the true message of the bible - To love your neighbour.

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I can pinpoint the exact moment I shredded my last remnant of religiosity.

 

We were never taught the Bible to be taken literally, more metaphorically, so there weren't much real contradictions. Even so, I can't remember really devoutly believing beyond accepting what you are told as a child. Turning teenager, I simply grew out of it, categorising all of it as myth, but I kept struggling with the anthropic principle for years.

Until, one day, I read a tiny article in the newspaper about the possibility that we live in a multiverse. The mere possibility of that made everything about religion completely redundant for me.

Edited by Bender
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Moderator Note

 

Many posts have been split

http://www.scienceforums.net/topic/105661-evidence-in-the-bible-hijacksplit-from-how-to-turn-a-believer/

 

It is disappointing that multiple moderator notes were blatantly ignored. The only reason the split posts are not in the trash is because the tangent was in part invited by the OP. It's still inappropriate, as is proselytizing.

 

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Jfoldbar.... for me, the bible never made sense... never seemed to be some God inspired word.... until i sincerely cried out to JESUS..and believed on him... at age 43. And to be honest...i have found no contractions inn the bible... only one truth after another after another. Not that it doesn't make me scratch my head at times.... but usually it's only a question of "why would God do this or that".

 

To believe he was God... came down from heaven... to earth as a man WITHOUT ANY SIN...and was sacrificed on a cross... as a payment for our sinful nature.... so that we could therefore be considered perfectly righteous... so that this God would take us back... now and for eternally... if we truly believed in this Jesus..... is actually quite a leap of faith I will admit. But my life certainly changed when I did just that. When I didn't just "believe in a God"... but truly believed Jesus was that God!

 

I have put much time into this since I believed. Actually trying to disprove it... via reading all the atheists posts... Scientific stuff, etc. I get challenged, but I keep coming back to God. Not a reason for my faith... but I have found it interesting how people seem to cry out "God help me!!" when about to die (think of the stories of the people on the planes on 911).

 

I just keep coming back to the fact that people are certainly sinful... greedy, murderous, hatred, etc etc etc. But we are also loving too. It "makes sense" to me, that there is a creator God all about love... we rebelled... he can't have anything to do with people like that... and there's only one way back to relationship with that creator God....a sacrifice of a sinless man...JESUS CHRIST.

 

God bless you in your decision.

 

And I thank you scientists for challenging me.

 

In His love, Scott

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that there is a creator God all about love

 

The Christian god isn't about love, but about subjugation. Sending people to hell for all eternity, where they suffer unspeakable torture, has absolutely NOTHING to do with love. In fact, it's pure evil. To equate such a horrible person with love is just incomprehensible.

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I understand you Thoran.

 

Yes, he is a God of wrath... against rebellious mankind...sinners you and I. I've lied, stolen, worshipped plenty of other things but him, coveted what other people have... resulting in my own greed.

 

Romans 3:23-24. 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, 24 and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

 

But....Romans 5. 8 But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. 9 Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from Gods wrath through him! 10 For if, while we were Gods enemies, we were reconciled to him through the death of his Son, how much more, having been reconciled, shall we be saved through his life! 11 Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

 

That's the good news... the gospel... for those who believe... in Jesus.

 

"Why" he did it this way....i have no idea. It is what it is. But he truly is...a God of love.

 

Thanks. Scott

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Yes, he is a God of wrath... against rebellious mankind...sinners you and I. I've lied, stolen, worshipped plenty of other things but him, coveted what other people have... resulting in my own greed.

Doing wrong things at the human level in no way justifies an eternal punishment of unspeakable suffering. Not to mention that not worshiping this god is enough to be condemned.

 

Willfully causing infinite suffering has nothing to do with love (obviously), and is far beyond being wrathful as well. It's a form of pure evil.

Edited by Thorham
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!

Moderator Note

 

I canot believe that, yet again, right after another moderator note, there is more preaching. The topic of this thread is about why and how people lose their belief. It is not an invitation to profess the depth of yours.

 

Warnings issued, as will be the case with any other posts that do this.

 

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  • 4 months later...
On 5/2/2017 at 0:12 AM, jfoldbar said:

i was bought up a christian. went my own way in my early 20's. now i am completely neutral simply cause 'the jurys still out'.

i tend to lean towards science because i like the thought of something that can be proven rather than just believed. for me, logic overrules feelings.

something i sometimes wonder. for me to turn from a strong believer to on the fence, all i had to do was simply read the other side of the story. hear both arguments. why doesnt that work for everyone?

 

 

It would seem that you were not brought up a Christian. But that you were brought up with Christian beliefs. A Christian does not think about believing that Christ exists, for they KNOW he exists. Do you think about believing that your parents exist or do you know they exist? Same thing. A Christian can however, out of anger or the cares or pleasures of this world, turn from following Christ. But they can never deny his existence because, they know. He has made himself real to them in a way that is impossible for others to grasp unless they also know him. It would seem that you may have believed in him but never knew him. The good news is, there's still time.

Some scientific beliefs are correct and some are not. And that's why it doesn't work for everyone because those who know, know that the error is not with them but with that which denies Christ.

If this is preaching...my apologies. Just trying to answer the question of "why it doesn't work for everyone."

 

 

Edited by mikeco
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On 5/2/2017 at 2:51 PM, DrP said:

I would say "Anyone who studies the bible 'for long enough' will soon see that it is full of holes"

 

If it IS the word of god, then this god make a lot of mistakes and is pretty harsh. It clearly isn't, it was written by men and is full of contradictions, errors and ghastly claims and acts of cruelty by the main character who is supposed to be all loving and perfect. He/it clearly does not exist as it is suggested in the bible at least.

I Still don't know how all those stories got into bible

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Uhmm...

I thought my post went into detail of how, and why, I stopped believing ( or rather caring about religion ).
And gave some examples of others who had gone the 'other way', and what their motivation might be.

If that isn't on topic, then I must have totally misunderstood the OP.

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The best way to turn a believer in my opinion, is simply show them the beauty, mastery, logic, and explanatory powers of science: Point out how the average living age has risen since the early and middle ages, when every day common diseases would kill you.   Point out how the necessity of any deity is defunct, at least up to t+10-43 seconds.

If that cannot turn a person, then there's no hope.

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  • 5 months later...

Perhaps a better formulation is this, Itoero:

The world is full of several hundreds of religions, each generally holding mutually inconsistent and contradicting beliefs from one another, yet they each also think their unique version is the one absolute truth.

If we accept the absolute nature of their claim then we must also acknowledge that only ONE of them can possibly be correct; that all others must be wrong. The probability of this, however, is exceedingly low... practically zero... and much more likely is that NONE of these religions represent an absolute truth... that all are equally mistaken in asserting the validity of their absolute claims. 

Does this also satisfy the objections of the posters above?

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1 minute ago, Strange said:

I can’t see how. Can you show this logic?

If many people believe in different things which are not based on any empirical evidence, isn't it then logical they are all wrong?

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1 minute ago, Itoero said:

If many people believe in different things which are not based on any empirical evidence, isn't it then logical they are all wrong?

No, but they’re likely only correct by accident. 

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7 minutes ago, iNow said:

No, but they’re likely only correct by accident

Ok. I just think it's important to point to the 'relativity' of their beliefsystem. Whatever religion you are in, there are billions of people that believe in something else.

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2 hours ago, iNow said:

Perhaps a better formulation is this, Itoero:

The world is full of several hundreds of religions, each generally holding mutually inconsistent and contradicting beliefs from one another, yet they each also think their unique version is the one absolute truth.

Do all of those hundreds of religions actually hold mutually inconsistent and contradicting beliefs? Is this true of Confucianism, Taoism, Buddhism (all existed quite happily alongside each other and exchanged ideas for millennia in China) of Jainism, Hinduism, Zoroastrianism (ditto in India) even the various Neo-Pagan religions that are popping up in Europe?

Is this perhaps a mistaken case of thinking the Abrahamic religions are THE template for all religions? 

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43 minutes ago, Prometheus said:

Do all of those hundreds of religions actually hold mutually inconsistent and contradicting beliefs? Is this true of Confucianism, Taoism, Buddhism (all existed quite happily alongside each other and exchanged ideas for millennia in China) of Jainism, Hinduism, Zoroastrianism (ditto in India) even the various Neo-Pagan religions that are popping up in Europe?

Is this perhaps a mistaken case of thinking the Abrahamic religions are THE template for all religions? 

I agree as to the fact that not all religions are equally evil all the time. As far as inconsistency goes its hard to quantify which tenet or myth is more or less contradicting, how do you quantify whether reincarnation is more/less inconsistent than ressurection. As far as the OP question is concerned its a dead end...first of all you do not turn a believer, he/she is already turned into their faith. I consider people who are free of the burden of religion to be simply that. Turning a believer implies turning into something or someone with specific views. I’m in the process of my own evolution in thinking about these things, I have to change something because Im loosing too much time which I could use more productivly elsewhere. I like Edward Witten’s take on this...he is often asked in interviews about his views on religion and he always answers that he never felt the need to think about religion, its was just never of interest to him. This most probably enables him to spend more time on productive things. 

Edited by koti
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