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What if you "know" that god does not exist

Discussion in 'Struggles by Non-Christians' started by Martin Moe, May 27, 2017.

  1. The-Doctor

    The-Doctor Man with a scarf

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    What if you knew the day you would die? Does that answer your question?
     
  2. 1watchman

    1watchman Overseer

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    I was saying, Uber, that the issue in this OP is not about being moral, but about plainly rejecting God. When such a manner as that is present, no preaching on moral issues is the remedy, but surrender fully to the Creator-God and His Word, which is urgent. Does that help?
     
  3. DarkSoul999

    DarkSoul999 Member

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    Do you think someone will start believing in God just because you called them a fool?

    You are creating nothing but more frustration.
     
  4. DarkSoul999

    DarkSoul999 Member

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    Please try not to take offense at this but you are grossly ignorant about the scientific method.

    Let us review the steps:

    OBSERVATION is first step, so that you know how you want to go about your research.

    So you are searching for an entity who is both inside and far beyond all material within the local universe. You have to search anywhere and everywhere.

    HYPOTHESIS is the answer you think you'll find.

    You assume that your very advanced tools are capable of responding but that they will end up not responding to the exact activity that would confirm the presence of God in the entire universe and beyond.

    PREDICTION is your specific belief about the scientific idea: If my hypothesis is true, then I predict we will discover this.

    You suspect that your measurements will confirm a negative

    EXPERIMENT is the tool that you invent to answer the question

    This is the most difficult part of the process. How will you study the expanse of infinity to observe for an omnipresent entity which operates at a staggering level of complexity and subtlety? Do you have a powerful enough computer? Do you have sensitive enough instruments?

    CONCLUSION is the answer that the experiment gives.

    Assuming that you do all the steps above correctly you will get definitive data here that be checked, replicated, and verified by anyone who wishes to repeat your process. Did you discover that God exists or does he not exist? Did you discover another type of entity not described in any human religion?

    -----------------

    Are you starting to see how difficult this is? Science is not an opinion that you feel in your heart because God doesn't feel "sciencey" enough nor is it a public opinion. It is an exact process of analysis, interpretation, and review.

    If you have an idea about how to design a legit scientific experiment to test for the existence/non-existence of God then I would love to hear about it...
     
  5. JacquelineDeane

    JacquelineDeane Newbie

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    Well, my own life's experiences have told me the exact opposite. That He does exist. Things have happened in my life that cannot be explained by natural means. That is how I know the supernatural is real.

    I am sorry you have not had the same experiences that I have had. Maybe you can ask GOD to reveal Himself to you?
     
  6. JacquelineDeane

    JacquelineDeane Newbie

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    Science is nothing more than a man-made invention, my friend. Scientific papers contradict one another. I don't think you are wise to put your trust in something that flawed human beings made up in their own minds. If a flawed person makes up something, you can trust that logically, it will be flawed as well.
     
  7. JacquelineDeane

    JacquelineDeane Newbie

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    All science does is explain the natural world, the seen world. Things we can see. But it cannot explain the unseen world, it cannot explain when something happens that we cannot explain. That is where it falls short. That is where religion takes up explanation for the weird things that happen in our world.
     
  8. aiki

    aiki Regular Member

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    Most people realize as they get older that their adolescent beliefs were just that: adolescent. It's...unfortunate that you have not.

    If someone asked you to give an explanation of a Ford motor car, you could describe the physics of the engine and transmission, the structure of the car body, the various physical elements of the construction of the car, and so on. Or, you could talk about a man named Henry Ford who designed and built cars and who created the Ford motor company to manufacture his vehicular creations en masse. You could go on about how Henry Ford is the fundamental reason for Ford motor cars existing. Both explanations would be true but very different in their focus. Would it be right for the one who gave a purely scientific account of a Ford motor car to dismiss as unnecessary any reference to Henry Ford? Would it be reasonable for him to assert that having explained how Ford motor cars work that there is, as a consequence, no Henry Ford at all? No, that would be silly. Maybe even irrational.

    And so? What does your personal inclination have to do with reality and truth? Nothing at all, really. In fact, your personal bias may have blinded you to an entire realm of truth.

    But why can't this be the effect of the very thing you've just described about highly complex and specialized knowledge? Perhaps apprehending the supernatural realm is beyond us and requires the intervention of God Himself in order for us to properly perceive and accept it. This is what the Bible indicates is the case. As you've pointed out, your failure to understand the supernatural does not justify dismissing it as false any more than failing to understand a highly complicated mathematical equation justifies you dismissing it as false.

    This is a false dichotomy, I'm afraid. There is at least one other option: There is a supernatural realm you cannot, by yourself, discern and there are religions that are merely counterfeit, human constructs of God and His supernatural realm. It is a non sequitur to propose that there can only be the two possibilities you offer. They are not mutually exclusive of, and/or contradictory to, one another.

    Many other scientifically-minded people have come to quite a different viewpoint. What you seem to think as an inevitable conclusion has not been so for the many theistic scientists that there are. I would urge you to look up Dr. John Lennox on YouTube. He's Emeritus Professor of Mathematics at Oxford and a brilliant Christian apologist. He is a living example that theistic belief and a scientific mind are not mutually exclusive things at all.
     
    Last edited: Sep 13, 2017
  9. DarkSoul999

    DarkSoul999 Member

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    Completely false. You can make your point without lying. Lying is a sin
     
  10. zephcom

    zephcom Active Member

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    Of course that same reasoning applies to unicorns also.

    The proof of existence belongs to those who claim the existence is real. Nothing is real until it is shown to be real...even God.
     
  11. DreamerOfTheHeart

    DreamerOfTheHeart Love is the Foundation of Truth

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    I will tell you quite plainly, I certainly do have evidence you do not have. I know for a fact God exists, because I have been shown ample evidence of this. For me, you have not (some would disagree heartedly). And, it is quite that simple.

    However, this does not mean that I find it illuminating for someone to argue that they have "proof God does not exist", or in anyway to claim to over rule the very possibility of the "supernatural".

    That sort of narrow minded, close minded thinking betrays every precept of science and logic.

    It is also patently absurd. It speaks of a desire to appeal to people, rather then to honestly attempt to approach the universe.

    The universe is full of unknowns, and if you are lucky enough to gather true knowledge, you learn far more about how little you really do know... then gathering what you can say you know for sure.
     
  12. zephcom

    zephcom Active Member

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    If you truly do have evidence for the existence of God, then just present it. That is the beauty of evidence, simply presenting it for others to evaluate should allow everyone the opportunity to agree or disagree with you.

    The problem with so much of the 'evidence' for the existence of God turns out to be just a subjective interpretation of some event which can equally be explained as coincidence.

    Allow me to introduce something William of Occam, a Fourteenth Century Franciscan Friar, introduced into the problem solving community. We know it today as Occam's Razor. "His principle states that among competing hypotheses, the one with the fewest assumptions should be selected."

    Occam's razor - Wikipedia

    If one has the choice between some event being just coincidence or having to assume there is a God who is manipulating reality to make the said event to even happen, the best choice is to go with coincidence.

    And this came from a member of the Catholic clergy.
     
  13. DreamerOfTheHeart

    DreamerOfTheHeart Love is the Foundation of Truth

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    Okay, so...

    Your statements quoting such things as "Occam's Razor" to me are painfully foolish.

    You are showing a juvenile sense of understanding even of worldly matters.

    So, just informational there.

    I realize I do not post here with my real name. But, I am in my mid forties, and extremely well read, as well as accomplished in the technical field. Why do I not post my linkedin to prove such a matter? Why, then one could even start to google my heritage and society.

    So, what you seem to think is telling me something I have never heard before (such as "occam's razor"), I am sitting here going, "okay this is a poorly read kid with a huge ego and no sense of understanding for how it is when one is accomplished and proven".

    Do not get me wrong. Three decades and plus ago, when I was your age, I read a lot of adult books of high regard as well, and largely also considered myself an atheist. I read origin of the species when I was 13.

    All very long before I proved myself so a lot of adults who have also proved their own intellects would proclaim me smart.

    But, honestly, I do not think I ever thought I would actually condemn anyone else's viewpoints.

    There was never a point where I said, "I will not consider a matter I have no evidence for". If I am given evidence for a matter, I will consider it. And I was acutely aware that if I did not have evidence for a matter, that this did not mean such a matter did not exist.

    (LOL. Big Grin.)

    All that said, I am not about to send you my linkedin which I can detail would prove what I am saying, anymore then I will ask Heaven to give you evidence.

    As for the world not having evidence, and? I am not sure the confusion point here.

    I have no desire to inform the world of matters it does not know, lol.

    Even by worldly manner of thought, what there is the gain for me?

    To persuade someone who is not persuaded? That is always the point of giving evidence, to an "oh duh" level...

    You simply do not understand.

    It is gold, evidence, and it is carefully treated as such. There is no reason to go and throw it around for just everyone, asking nothing back from them.
     
  14. zephcom

    zephcom Active Member

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    Got it. You don't really have any evidence but want to appear like you do.
     
  15. ldonjohn

    ldonjohn Active Member

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    Martin,

    I can only speak for myself as a person who, many years ago, wasn't sure if God exists or if Jesus is real. I was confused about how Christians could be certain about their faith in God, and I really thought that there was no way anyone could really know, for sure, of the truth of the matter. Yes, I did ask many questions of men and read several books written by well known Christian authors, but I found no answers there. I had a sense that something was missing; that there was a missing link, and I could not figure out what it was. There was no internet back then so I could not go to a forum and ask for the opinions of others like we can do today.

    You said in your post, “Those that do believe must have a mental capacity for discerning that a supernatural deity exists that I, and many others, do not possess; or they create such belief within themselves through a stimulus of cultural beliefs and a desire to believe in something beyond themselves.”

    You also said, “Both of these possibilities cannot be correct. There is something supernatural that I cannot discern, or religion is just a cultural construct. And someone in my position has no way of discerning which one is correct, thus seeing no alternative to reality, and just a hodgepodge of religious theory within and between religions” You are right & wrong in saying that “there is something supernatural that I cannot discern,”(More about that later) But, this part, “or religion is just a cultural construct” should be, “and religion is just a cultural construct” because religion is mans' attempt to reach God, but Christianity is not a religion because Christianity is God reaching out to man.

    Next, you said, “And someone in my position has no way of discerning which one is correct,” Again, you are wrong because there is a way for you to discern the truth about the matter. Please stay with me as I explain how I was able to discern the truth about Christianity & about God.

    After several years of asking questions, reading books about God & Jesus, listening to preachers on the radio, and sometimes even going to church, I just gave up on myself and asked the God who I didn't know for sure existed to show me the truth about Himself. I immediately started reading the Book of John, the Gospel of John, not knowing what I would find there, but willing to accept whatever it would be if I was convinced that it was the truth.

    When I began reading from the Gospel of John I, like you and others, did not have that mental capacity to discern that God exists. I was a real skeptic who needed some kind of undeniable proof that would convince me, without any doubt, that God is real. There was no way I could create within myself a “belief” in God., for had that been possible then I would have found my answer in “myself,” and therefore, I would have never found the real answer.

    I had read some of that Book in church as a kid, and it really didn't mean anything to me then, but this time was different. I had never understood anything in the bible before that day, but as I began reading from the Gospel of John something unexpected began to happen to me. For some reason I was understanding the words I was reading. It was as though I was a blind man who could suddenly see. Something was enabling me to understand that this scripture is saying that Jesus really is God who became a man. As I continued to read I realized that the missing link was God Himself who was giving me the ability to see & to understand spiritual truth. By the time I had read through the 6th chapter of John I had my answer. I found something that I thought would be impossible to know. I found that convincing evidence that the bible is the truth, that God is real, and that Jesus is God who became a man.

    The evidence that convinced me of the truth about God is impossible to explain to someone who has never experienced the convincing work of God the Holy Spirit in his/her life; the missing link. The evidence I found that day is the same kind of “knowing” that convinces me that whenever I look into a mirror that I am looking at myself. I don't have to ask someone if “that is me.” I know it is me.

    You might be thinking that I convinced myself that God is real, but that is not true. I found that proof when I obeyed Jeremiah 29:1; “And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart,” meaning that if you earnestly search after God you will find Him.

    IOW, your answer about the existence of God will not be found in the wisdom of man, but can be found in the Word of the God you don't believe exists if you will obey Jeremiah 29 and allow the Holy Spirit to show you the truth in the same way He showed me the truth. Yes, I know atheists call that argument “circular reasoning,” but that's just their way of convincing themselves that they are right about their unbelief.

    I will close by saying that I don't understand everything about God, or about the bible, and if I read scripture that I don't understand or that might appear to be a contradiction of other scriptures I don't fret over it because I know the overall message of the bible is the grace of God that saves us from our sin. That is the Gospel message of the cross that has given me a peace that also cannot be explained to someone who has not experienced that peace for himself/herself.

    John
     
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2017
  16. AservantofGodandthelordJC

    AservantofGodandthelordJC New Member

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    On the contrary, what if you know beyond doubt that God does exist? Religion becomes meaningless, there is only what is and what isn't. As a godless human you cannot 'know' anything, religious or not.
     
  17. Gottservant

    Gottservant God loves your words, may men love them also Supporter

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    If you "know" God does not exist, you get nothing, nothing and nothing.

    Nothing from God, nothing from Jesus, nothing from the Holy Spirit.

    Then you have a choice: "Do I say I have nothing? When I have nothing and nothing and nothing?"
     
  18. YesMe

    YesMe Member

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    It's easier for people to believe the theory of "nothingness" than to accept God.I heard people saying that when we die, that's it, that's the end, there's nothing after it, we are erased from existence, as if we've never lived.They also go on saying that because we only have a life, we have to live it at maximum, doing everything that makes us happy.
     
  19. Ph413

    Ph413 New Member

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    Hello Martin. I don't know if you are still into this topic because long time has passed since you created it. Anyway, I just saw it and after briefly looking at other people's answers I decided to give you mine, but also, I would like to point out some things that could be a good research point because, let's be honest, you won't start believing this very moment because you read one comment regarding this topic.

    Anyway, I will give you my brief summary because, I understand how you feel because I've been there myself. First, I want to say that I'm not a theology expert or anything similar, I'm a 18 yo (please don't leave after reading my age :D ) that had it enough with people telling him that he is ignorrant fool because he believes in a God. Now, at that time I was "blindly" believing in God but I always had those classic big questions. When I went to the high school I was kinda surprised to see how many of my friends didn't believe in God and so I tried to get them to believe in Him. However, when I couldn't give solid arguments for my faith other than just some childish talk, I decided do to this: I'm going to examine this thing, I will find out for sure is there any evidence for this belief of Christian God. If there is, then I will be able to understand my faith and learn to share it with others and if there isn't, I won't believe anymore in something I couldn't even prove is true. That is when it all started. It's been a lot of late nights, lot of reading and watching, researching... I believe, if you are really determined to find out this, once for all, that YOU as well, will go through a lot of research and I encourage you to DON'T GIVE UP ON IT until you are 100% certain in what you believe.

    Regarding the evidence. When we look at the evidence, there is not one specific part which you should focus on. Evidence (at least in my case) was highly based on history and philosophy, there are also testimonies from other people (which, of course, doesn't make something true but combined with already stated groups makes a bigger pictuere) and, of course, a personal expirience of God (which someone may or may not encounter).

    Now, I like to say that there are two ways of "finding" God. We can do it indirectly (by looking at the creation and examining evidences regarding it) and directly (by looking at the Jesus Christ and examining evidences regarding Him). In my personal expirience, it is much harder (but still acheivable) to find God by looking at the evidences regarding creation. Since Jesus Christ is the center figure regarding Christianity, it would seem logical to focus the research on Him.

    Stuff to research more deeply (if you want to, I can provide you materials):
    - Firstly, did Jesus existed or was he made up? (not a single serious scholar denies that)
    - After you actually understand that he was a historic figure, next thing is to see whether things that he was saying or doing are actually reliable as a evidence and since most of the information regarding Jesus are found in the Gospels, next topic is - Are Gospels reliable as the historical evidence?
    - Was Jesus REALLY the Son of God or just a regular man?
    - Was the resurrection of Jesus a real event?


    I think those are the main topics that one should start his research with. After hitting the main ones, you could literally go anywhere you want.
    - You could look into more stuff regarding Jesus Christ
    - You could look at the evidences regarding creation, stuff like the existance of this complex universe (which is indicating that there is a Creator)
    - Looking at creation and seeing extreme precision, intention and complexity (which indicates that intelligent design is pointing to a intelligent designer - enormous topic called Intelligent Design movement)
    - Stuff like existence of universal objective moral values (pointing to a moral lawgiver)

    I'll give you this youtube channel and there you can find A LOT of videos regarding multiple topics linked to Christianity, this helped me a lot in the beginning):
    Theology, Philosophy and Science

    I hope this post wasn't too long for you to read and I hope that you will be successfull in your journey to truly find God. I wish you all the best, God bless.
     
    Last edited: Oct 27, 2017
  20. zephcom

    zephcom Active Member

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    I think you are on the right track in advising Martin to do research. But I would suggest that his research should be much more general than you suggest.

    You have fallen into a common quagmire that many people who have accepted a religion as valid fall into. When one starts a study to determine whether God exists or not, one should not limit oneself to any one religion or to any religion at all.

    By heading directly to a study of Jesus you are, essentially, dismissing every other religion without cause. Some other religion may well have a better grasp on the existence of God than Christianity. Certainly those people who follow other religions most likely think their religion is better equipped to study God than any other or they would not subscribe to it.

    It God does exist...and I believe He does...the evidence for it may well not exist in -any- religion. The evidence may well exist only within the universe which supports human life itself.

    I would suggest that a better approach would be to study the science of the physics of the universe. If one sees even the fingerprint of God there, then one is achieving a belief that God exists.

    Once one does that, then one should study to answer the next question: Does God manifest Himself (male gender assumed only because it is the common pronoun used to refer to God) on earth or not. Both possibilities exist.

    I would suggest if one determines God exists but does not manifest Himself on earth, one could reasonably end the inquiry. If He does not manifest Himself on earth, clearly no religion would be worth the bother.

    If one determines that God does, however, manifest Himself on earth, then one should begin learning -how- that manifestation occurs, whether it has benefits or harms, and whether a religion would be necessary to understand the manifestation.

    Only if one gets that far and determines whether a religion is necessary would one need to research which religion best fits the known manifestation.

    Religions around the world are a lot like political parties, whichever one one's parents belonged to is the one most people join. IMMHO, that is not a good way to select either a political party or a religion.

    It is entirely possible that neither a political party nor a religion is necessary in an individual's life.
     
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