Weak Analogies? Is That the Best You Can Do to Prove God?

Weak Analogies? Is That the Best You Can Do to Prove God? October 2, 2015

I’d like to highlight an analogy that Christians would do well to avoid.

Here’s one instance of it.

A man found the girl of his dreams. She was intelligent, beautiful, and she loved him. He was convinced that she was the perfect mate. He wanted to marry her. But he never asked her. So, they were never married. Wanting to be married doesn’t make it so. You have to decide and then act.

Our situation with God is something like that. We feel the God-shaped vacuum. We desire relationship with him. We hear that Christ’s sacrifice makes that relationship possible by paying the price for our wrongdoing.

But the relationship will never happen unless we decide and then act.

As Beyoncé observed, “If you like it, then you shoulda put a ring on it.” Take the plunge. Make a leap of faith and commit to Christianity.

I don’t find the story compelling, but that’s not my point. My point is that I don’t find the story logical. What’s the girlfriend doing in the story? How does that relationship illustrate our relationship with Jesus? Jesus is like the perfect girlfriend … that you just never get around to committing to? If you’re shy or noncommittal, couldn’t your girlfriend (or Jesus) suggest getting married?

No, this story is not at all what the Christian claim is like. Here’s a better parallel:

A man wanted to settle down with someone special, and his friend Paul told him about a girl he knew, Diana. Paul described her as intelligent, beautiful, caring, and the perfect mate. The guy was eager to meet her and asked Paul to arrange it, but Paul kept giving excuses—she was busy, she had to reschedule, she was out of town, and so on. But Paul said that she was also eager to meet.

As our hero continued to ask about the mysterious Diana over subsequent days, Paul responded with more excuses and gave her increasingly New Age-y attributes: Diana had lived past lives, she could sense the future, she could move things with her mind. And then ever more comic-book skills: she could materialize objects, she could heal in seconds after an injury like Wolverine, she could fly like Superman.

Our hero has now lost interest. This tale sounds like an invention, even like fiction. He doesn’t imagine that Paul would deliberately lie to him, but Paul’s story has few characteristics of an authentic biography.

Why should he imagine that Diana exists, especially when she looks invented and his pleas for evidence turn up nothing? Wonder Woman doesn’t exist; the Wicked Witch of the West doesn’t exist; why imagine that Diana does? Yes, the man really wants a great woman in his life, and yes, this one sounds pretty amazing. But why imagine that she even exists?

And that’s the problem with these “Jesus is like” or “God is like” analogies. The least interesting feature of the Christian girl-of-his-dreams story is that the girl actually exists. Well, duh—it’s hardly a remarkable claim.

And yet existence is the central feature of the claim about Jesus or God. Somewhere very early in that story must be some variant of, “Okay, I know this sounds pretty fanciful. I know God sounds just like all those other gods that we both agree don’t exist. But this one’s different! Let me tell you why.”

Don’t pretend that one’s relationship with a person is like that with God. Christians should avoid this inept analogy.

I choose not to draw vast conclusions 
from half-vast data.
— Dr. Jerry Ehman

(This is an update of a post that originally appeared 1/2/13.)

Photo credit: Wikipedia

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  • Explorer

    I generally point out when my evangelical friends make a vast and unsupported leap. “If we accept that people are not always nice, then we know that we need to ask jesus into our hearts!”

    “Wait… You skipped over a few claims there! I can let go of this brick over by the grill. It will likely fall, but it might give us evidence of physics not being what we’ve found so far. Is there some sort of evidence like that for all the jesus claims? Oh, the brick might not fall? Would you be willing to either lay down under it with your eyes closed, or have your two-year-old do it, to demonstrate that you have the faith of a mustard seed? Anyway, there are enough evil christians to show that there is room in the heart for jesus and evil at the same time, so that’s not a solution.”

    I never bring up religion, and try to beg off when people insist on it, but I don’t mind continuing once someone else decides that there is no need to respect boundaries, also something jesus doesn’t help with.

    • Ron

      I once asked a theist on this blog to go skydiving with me. I’d jump out placing my faith in parachute physics while he’d jump out placing his faith in God alone. For some strange reason he wasn’t keen to take up that offer.

      • Christians only seem to imagine God in the vague places (Aunt Mary’s cancer went away) and only seem to trust God in places where it doesn’t much matter (not in crossing the street or parachuting, for example).

        What’s this guy good for?

        • Ron

          “This kind of faith is really the perfection of narcissism. God loves me, don’t you know. He cured me of my eczema. He makes me feel so good while singing in church. And just when we had given up hope he found a banker who was willing to reduce my mother’s mortgage.”~Sam Harris (WLC debate @ 5:33)

          https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=1q-387Zb54Q#t=332

  • Frank

    Speaking of ineptness.

    • Dys

      Yes, you certainly are full of it Frank. It’s good that you’re finally starting to realize it.

      • Frank

        Cute. Ineffective but cute.

        • Dys

          I know it’s ineffective Frank. Not much of anything can get through that thick skull of yours.

          But please, carry on with your equally ineffective and lazy trolling.

        • Frank

          How embarrassing that you believe the subject is what makes it ineffective rather than the substance.

        • Dys

          Frank, honestly, you really shouldn’t be talking about anyone being embarrassed, especially considering the complete lack of substance in your own comment.

          I made a simple joke at your expense because your comment was utterly pointless and stupid, and adequately demonstrated your own ineptitude. That’s all.

        • Frank

          Yes and you are welcome to your failure.

        • Dys

          At this point, responding to your idiocy any further is a waste of time, as it’s clear you’ve nothing of any substance to say. Happy trolling Frank.

        • Frank

          Bye bye.

        • There is a god!

        • Frank

          Wrong again Bob, just one God.

        • MNb

          And he isn’t there either, or you would have dissolved in air.

        • No: wrong again because, despite your assurances, you’re still here.

        • Frank

          Ah your best. Got it.

        • Dys

          I gotta say that it’s impressive that Frank’s managed to make so many comments and disparage so many people without demonstrating one iota of intelligence or wit himself.

          It’s almost like he doesn’t have anything meaningful or useful to say at all, and uses trolling as a means of feeding his over-inflated ego.

        • Jack Baynes

          And he makes a damn fine meatball sub. Praise the Sandwichmaker.

        • Dys

          Yep…Jeff, the god of biscuits.

        • MNb

          The problem is that you failed to bring up anything with any substance …..

        • Frank

          I gave all that was necessary.

        • Dys

          In other words, you’re just trolling.

        • Frank

          If pointing out the reality of the situation is trolling, guilty as charged.

        • Dys

          You’ve pointed nothing of the kind out, but you’re entitle to your own silly delusions.

        • Frank

          Oh the irony….

        • Esquilax

          Can you do more than pithy one liners? Like, maybe actually explaining your position, or even pretending you have something cogent to say?

        • Susan

          If you click on Frank’s commenting history, you’ll see that no, he can’t.

          He has a very limited repertoire.

        • tsig

          Looks more like an Elisha type program than real responses.

        • Dys

          Come on now…calling his one-liners pithy is giving Frank far, far too much credit.

        • 90Lew90

          The reality of the situation? Like that college shooting is attributable at least in part to abortion being available in the US?

        • Frank

          Don’t project your failure to comprehend on me.

        • 90Lew90

          But that’s what you said, Frank. Oh yes, that is what you said. You dummy.

        • Frank

          How embarrassing for you.

          Why are atheists so bitter and angry and lack the intelligence they claim to value?

        • 90Lew90

          It seems nobody can say anything to you without embarrassing themselves, eh Frank. Is it everyone else? Or do you think maybe it’s just you?

        • Frank

          No it’s you.

        • Damn–I don’t know how you do it! Every time, it’s pearls of wisdom and wit.

          Jesus must be so proud.

        • DataguyII

          Queue Frank’s response, “You are, what am I?”

          At Frank’s church, he’s one of the smart ones. Imagine that!

        • MNb

          You gave all that was necessary to show us that you’re incapable of making a reasonable argument – or even an unreasonable, for that matter.

        • tsig

          Have you met that invisible girl?

    • Jack Baynes

      How does his analogy fail?

    • Just a drive by? Or will you pause long enough to share your wisdom about the problems with this post?

      • InDog

        Frank is quite the troll. He will pretend that comment is fact-packed with footnotes and illustrations.

      • Frank

        Stop posting so you don’t continue to embarrass yourself.

        • Brilliant! You’ve got brain dribbling disease, but you cleverly turn it back so that it’s me who looks stupid!

          I don’t know how you do it. I predict that I’ll get ensnared in yet more of your witty and winsome logical traps in the future.

        • Frank

          Thanks for proving my point. Sad.

        • MNb

          Thanks for proving my point:

          “Stop commenting so you don’t continue to embarrass yourself.”

          Amusing.

        • Frank

          I know you guys are too easy to embarrass.

        • Rudy R

          If you don’t like Bob’s posts, use your god-given free will and quit reading them.

        • Frank

          I like to check in now and again and how bankrupt atheism remains to be. I’m never disappointed.

        • Contribute to the conversation or get banned.

        • Frank

          I am you just don’t like how close to home I’m hitting.

          Your post was inept. That’s the best contribution you’ll ever get. Let’s see how smart you really are.

        • Kodie

          You’re not hitting anything, you’re just mumbling your delusions. You’re very weak and have nothing to talk about.

        • Frank

          Oh the irony…

        • Kodie

          What irony? That I’m not delusional but you are? That’s not irony. You’re not getting banned because you’re a Christian, you’re getting banned because you don’t have any contribution to offer, just being an asshole and spamming your delusions that you’re winning at something. If you offered any arguments at all, I’m sure then we could discuss them. What is the purpose of just hating? You have to say what you hate and elaborate some form of argument. Otherwise, you are useless. In every capacity. Is mumbling how sad you are about atheism winning an argument? Is that god’s purpose for you? That’s some weak shit, Frank. It must be raining and you can’t go to the park and tell the pigeons.

        • Dys

          Psst…Kodie. Frank doesn’t know what the word ‘irony’ means. I think what’s basically happening here is that since a lot of Christianity looks down on masturbation, they have to look for other outlets to get off, and Frank’s decided that trolling atheist blogs with his special brand of stupidity is his alternative.

        • Greg G.

          Religious arguments are powerless against irony chariots.

        • You lose.

        • Frank

          You lost before you started. Thanks for the confirmation!

        • Dys

          I’m gonna pull a Frank, and it’ll be directly relevent to your comment….

          Oh, the irony.

          It’s also telling that Frank’s so secure in his imaginary intellectual superiority that he went and created another account just so he could have another round of last-wordism.

          Also, Greg since you’re cheerleading for this yutz, you do realize he’s said nothing of value, right? Oh wait…now I understand. Never mind.

        • I’ve banned Frank once. I wonder how long we’ll play the game where he makes up new accounts to come on here and say something empty and stupid. Again.

        • Dys

          It looks like he created a special account for the sole purpose of trolling atheist blogs.

        • Dys

          The best contribution you’ll provide is your own inept, substance-less posting, combined with your delusions of grandeur.

          Does Christianity help inform your pompous, arrogant egotism?

        • I do believe I hear baby Jesus crying.

        • Philmonomer

          Your post was inept. That’s the best contribution you’ll ever get. Let’s see how smart you really are.

          Let’s see how smart you really are. Enlighten us.

        • MNb

          Stop commenting so you don’t continue to embarrass yourself.

    • RichardSRussell

      That which may be asserted without evidence may safely be ignored without regret.

      • MNb

        You made a big, but unserious mistake. You assumed that Frank is interested in a thoughtful discussion.

  • MNb

    The analogy fails in another respect, leaving aside that it’s questionable that the boy always should take the first step. When a boys does take the first step towards an interested girl almost always reacts immediately and unless the boy is a jerk his next step very much depends on that reaction.
    The “True Seeker for God” is supposed to take all the steps even if that god never reacts.

    • Kodie

      If you change your mind, I’ll be waiting at the end of the aisle.

  • Jack Baynes

    I think you should add to your analogy claims from Paul that Diana keeps calling you but you never answer, though your phone never rings.

  • The Eh’theist

    I like your analogy. Makes things 100% clear. But there’s also another analogy that applies. The Bible talks about God being so crazy in love with us that he’ll drop everything and go to any length to make contact with us, and then lavish us with care and concern for any injury we’ve suffered.

    Any of you run into a god like that? I sure haven’t. Perhaps the Christians could share their analogy with their God and ask why he hasn’t asked us out directly instead of passing notes and 3rd-hand whispers like kindergarten kids.

    • Kodie

      He’s the girl in this analogy.

    • Putting the parts of the Bible where God is cited as loving humans so much that he would do all of these A,B,C things for us right alongside the parts where God is cited as hating humans so much that he enjoys subjecting them to torture (as much as a demented kid playing with the guts of a dog’s corpse)… would be funny if it wasn’t so tragically sad.

  • InDog

    That analogy also reveals the fundamental sexism in Christianity: its perspective is entirely that of a straight man. There is no way to make that analogy work with any other combination.
    And as MNb points out, one party does all the work. Which would be stalking, except it highlights that one party literally does *everything* in the relationship. When you pick up the phone to call Jesus-girl, there’s no dial tone.

    What this guy is actually describing is a blind-date arranged marriage.

  • L.Long

    No need to comment as you hit it right on the head with a few comments filling in some fine points. Great Post and summery of what is basically wrong besides the obvious…YOU ARE BORN FULL OF SIN & CORRUPTION!!!! That part started by slide into the dark side that turns out to be brightly lite!

  • 3vil5triker .

    This reminds me of the following video by DarkMatter2525:
    https://youtu.be/-j8ZMMuu7MU

    • tsig

      Good video but the narrators monotone is hard to listen to.

  • Taneli Huuskonen

    A bad analogy is like a non-smoking gun.

  • primenumbers

    If god is as theists claim god to be, nothing can be analogical to god in any way at all. There is no way the finite can be an analogy for the infinite, for the supported to be an analogy for the unsupported supporter of all etc. As soon as they make an analogy with something worldly and god, they’re throwing away their nuanced theological god and going straight back to that anthropomorphic deity they really believe in, and that is utterly falsifiable.

    • They seem to want it both ways. God is inaccessible, unknowable, and infinite … but he’s also the dude who walked over to Abram’s place to chew the fat. Or who “would speak to Moses face to face, as a man speaks with his friend” (Ex. 33:11).

      • primenumbers

        But of course! It’s all part of the apologetic game that rationalizes belief in an anthropomorphic deity by piggy-backing it on a nuanced theological deity and equivocating as necessary.

      • MNb

        Yeah, it’s always funny to see a christian claim that god is inaccessible, unknowable etc. and then proceed to tell us exactly how god is like. Even funnier is to point it out to them.

      • Given how many different Christian viewpoints that they are on God, with those opinions having their own Biblical passages to draw on since the Bible is loaded to the bring with contradictions and errors, you almost wish that the religion just split up completely. There are ‘Christianities’ rather than a ‘Christianity’. The people that worship a human-like deity who wants to end suffering but, for whatever reason, doesn’t infere until death– when we all go to a universal salvation– differ so much from the people that worship a malicious entity that intentionally causes suffering for his creations before having them burn in his hell to his delight after death… why can’t evangelicals pray to “Steve” and the mainline moderates to “Patrick”? That would actually make sense rather than forcing 2+2 to be 5.

      • Odd Jørgensen

        Except Moses was forbidden to see gods face, he could however catch a glimpse of his ass(or back parts) as he walked past.

        http://www.patheos.com/blogs/unreasonablefaith/2010/07/moses-gods-ass/

  • Ron

    Funny thing about that Beyoncé video is that it was appropriated by a church choir director.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_detailpage&v=OYFv2cU3M5Y#t=57

    • I saw a naked version at Dan Savage’s HumpFest amateur porn video. I liked that one better than this.

      • Ron

        Got links? My google mojo isn’t working.

        • Unfortunately, no.

          The motto is, “Be a star for a weekend, not forever.” It’s all amateurs, and participants are assured that we’ll keep their naughty little secrets.

  • SteveK

    >> Here’s a better parallel:

    Your better parallel is to undo the original analogy that seems to work pretty well for what it was intended to do, and erect an analogy that doesn’t work so you can say how awful the “better” analogy is. Good job, Bob.

    • The post makes clear why the original analogy fails completely. Start with that and show me the error.

      • SteveK

        >> My point is that I don’t find the story logical.

        Is this your clear point – that you don’t understand the point of the analogy – hence questions like “What’s the girlfriend doing in the story? How does that relationship illustrate our relationship with Jesus.”?

        >> The least interesting feature of the Christian girl-of-his-dreams story is that the girl actually exists.

        Is this your clear point? If so, I find it remarkable that an educated person such as yourself suddenly goes numb to analogies simply because he doesn’t believe in the story – as if you *must* believe the story in order to understand the analogy.

        • The analogy fails.

          Show me I’m wrong.

        • SteveK

          I did that in my last comment and you didn’t bother to tell me what I got it wrong. The point of the analogy isn’t to prove God exists so it didn’t fail to deliver on that point.

        • The “girl of his dreams” story isn’t parallel with the Jesus story.

        • SteveK

          I think you’re reading things into it that aren’t there. The girl is the object of desire taken from ‘the argument from desire’ and she is put into an analogy to make a point about the gospel and a relationship with Christ.

          It’s not too difficult to understand, Bob, but keep on keeping on.

        • adam

          “It’s telling a part (not all) of the Christian story”

          Yes LET US talk the other part of the ‘christian story’ it’s ‘morality’

          “‘the argument from desire’ ”

          So if you ‘desire’ to be able to do almost ANYTHING EVIL you can want or desire, then the bible ‘god’ is for you:

          Christian Morality?

          It is really under biblical ‘morality’ ANYTHING goes except for blasphemy of the holy ghost.

          Yes, you can genocide and be forgiven.
          Yes, you can murder, rape and be forgiven.

          You can genocide every single individual in any group except lets say a baby and its mother, you can beat that baby to death, rape its lifeless body, then carve that baby up and eat it, cut off that mothers head and shit that baby down her throat…..

          And STILL be forgiven.

          So the biblical morality is the REAL case where anything goes…
          .
          .
          .
          Again except for blasphemy of the holey ghost,

          THAT is so horrible, that it is UNFORGIVABLE.

        • In that case, it really fails. The girl is a romantic interest, and Jesus is not.

          But to return to my point, a man who simply doesn’t think or bother to ask his girlfriend to marry him (though he truly wants to have a wife) is just an idiot. The man who doesn’t ask Jesus into his life isn’t parallel because he’s not in the same situation. Jesus appears to be imaginary, while the girl doesn’t.

        • SteveK

          It’s telling a part (not all) of the Christian story by way of analogy and it doesn’t fail in doing that – by analogy. It’s not an exact parallel because it’s an analogy.

          Your complaint is that the analogy is imperfect and incomplete. I think the author knows that. Use that MIT degree, Bob.

        • No, it’s not an exact parallel. It’s so inexact as to be useless. That’s my point.

          The girl exists, obviously. The existence of Jesus is the very thing in question. The analogy is laughably bad.

          But we’re going around in circles.

        • SteveK

          You really are amazing, Bob. The author connects the dots between the analogy and the Christian message and you continue to see no connection at all. Wow.

        • adam

          Only if the girl is IMAGINARY as well.

        • Ron

          Here’s how the author connects the dots:

          You can begin your new relationship with God by praying a prayer like this one:

          “God, I want to come into relationship with you. I know that I am not perfect, that I’m a sinner in your eyes. Thank you that you sent Jesus to die in my place, to take the punishment for my sinfulness. Come into my life, Lord. Begin making me the person you designed me to be. Amen.”

          Been there. Done that. Got no response.

          So my conclusion is that either God doesn’t exist, or God doesn’t care.

        • Sam Sam

          I don’t think it was God who failed you but rather you failed to follow through with what God requires of you. To continually seek Him out with all your heart and to learn of Him and His ways so that you may learn to do those things which are pleasing and acceptable in His sight as He commands of you.

          Sounds like you gave up before you even started. Perhaps because the import of the gospel of God’s peace towards us and salvation from God’s just judgment of wrath rightly owed to us who rebel (sin) against the God of Truth wasn’t fully presented to you.

          But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. 7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. James 4:6-8

          The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God. Psalm 14:2

          Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and LEARN of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light (Mat.11:28-30). God’s yoke is that Holy Spirit anointing of Love, Joy, Peace, Longsufering, Gentleness, Goodness, faith, Meekness, Temperance, Patience, and such like.
          — He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. John 14:21 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. John 15:10 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. John 15:12
          — And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight. 1 John 3:22

          But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul. Deuteronomy 4:29

          — Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Isaiah 55:6
          — Seek the Lord and his strength, seek his face continually. 1 Chronicles 16:11
          — Seek the Lord, and his strength: seek his face evermore. Psalm 105:4
          — When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, Lord, will I seek. Psalm 27:8
          — And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, Lord, hast not forsaken them that seek thee. Psalm 9:10
          — The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. Lamentations 3:25
          — The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the Lord that seek him: your heart shall live for ever. Psalm 22:26

          And thou, Solomon my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off for ever. 1 Chronicles 28:9
          –Seek ye the Lord, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the Lord’s anger. Zephaniah 2:3
          — Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the Lord understand all things. Proverbs 28:5
          —And he did evil, because he prepared not his heart to seek the Lord. 2 Chronicles 12:14

          And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind [with God’s words of truth], that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:2
          — Now the God of peace… 21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. Hebrews 13:20-21
          — For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth (Eph. 5:9)). 18 For he that in these things serveth Christ is acceptable to God, and approved of men. Romans 14:17-18
          — I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. Romans 12:1
          — But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. Hebrews 13:16

          The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. Psalm 51:17 The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit. Psalm 34:18

          Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Matthew 7:21
          — For many are called, but few are chosen. Matthew 22:14
          — Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Matthew 7:14

          Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. Galatians 6:7

          Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor. 6:9-10). Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. Galatians 5:19-21

          But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness (1 Tim.6:11). Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour. Ephesians 5:1-2

          Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. (John 16:13). But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him (1 John 2:27). (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Ephesians 5:9

          Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day (Psalm 25:5). For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness [eternal life] by faith (Gal. 5:5). And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us (Rom. 5:5). And God’s Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law (Rom 13:10). For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself (Gal 5:14)

          For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, 12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; 13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; 14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. Titus 2:11-14

          Jesus Christ, the Son of God, came and offered himself (as an innocent man) to buy back from the grips of death and hell all sinners who willingly choose to forsake their sinful ways and return back to God and walk in His right ways of truth and life. This all solely by God’s grace alone through our faith (belief and trust) in God Almighty and in the deliverance power of His resurrected Son Jesus Christ.

          How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him? Hebrews 2:3

          Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. Philippians 2:12

        • Ron

          You might assume that I approached this endeavor in a frivolous manner, but you’d be wrong. Losing my faith was one of the most traumatic and depressing events of my life. For well over three years I prayed fervently, read the Bible, sought spiritual counseling and asked others to pray for me… but received no sign from God.

          It wasn’t until decades later that I discovered that many, many others have lived through similar experiences.

          “The damned of hell suffer eternal punishment because they experiment with the loss of God. In my own soul, I feel the terrible pain of this loss. I feel that God does not want me, that God is not God and that he does not really exist.”
          — Mother Teresa (Come Be My Light – The Private Writings of the Saint of Calcutta)

          “My God, My God, why hast Thou forsaken Me?”
          — Jesus

        • Sam Sam

          I’ve had my own experiences of doubt similar to yours seeking after a direct sign from God. But I’ve since learned that I’m not any more special than any of the other billions of people in the world. The truth of the matter is God has already given us a sign. His written word is a sign with a wealth of guideposts to direct us in all that we do.

          Trust in the Lord with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths. Proverbs 3:5-6

          It matters not to God what we choose do in life, but rather why and how we do them.

        • God’s sign is the Bible? How do you know it’s not the Enuma Elish or the Bhagavad Gitas or the Koran?

          Sure, it’d be nice if you just happened to pick the right one by dumb luck, but believers in all the other religions think the same thing.

        • Sam Sam

          Because it is true of course! This is self-evident to all who choose not to walk in the way of fools.

          It is the only writing that makes viable sense above all other writings of men. It alone has the only realistic explanation for the existence of that activating power that is undeniably foremost and above all other powers. Even that self-same undeniable energy source which holds together all structural forms known to man and energizes all things with movement (motion), which we commonly call life.

          It is the only harmonic compilation of writings that addresses every facet of human existence as one would logically expect from a Creator (the power source and generator of life) who desires for His created people to know and understand Him, His ways and His will.

          It contains never changing wisdom, unlike any other writings, that rings with self-evident truth that is just as relevant today and going forth into the future as they were in all the ages past.

          Since you have had the opportunity of, as you say, “dumb luck,” to come upon the Word of God Almighty , you would do well to take heed to your so-called “dumb luck” opportunity and get to know Him; Rather than fighting against the One and Only True God by spreading seeds of doubt against the eternal truth of God the Father, Jesus Christ His Son, and the life giving power of their baptismal anointing… the Holy Spirit.

          To God alone be all the glory for all the works of His eternal goodness which He has preordained upon all who truly love Him. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

        • only it’s not luck, it’s destiny.

        • Greg G.

          What about the destiny of Muslims, Hindi, Buddhists, Jews, and all the others whose destiny was to not be born into a world where Christians killed off non-believers for centuries.

        • A type of destiny is created by God being omniscient.

        • adam

          “A type of destiny is created by God being omniscient.”

        • Notice I did not say all powerful. We have free will so God does not force us to do things, but he know what will happen so that’s where the destiny angle comes in.

        • adam

          ” We have free will so God does not force us to do things, “..

        • Ignorant Amos

          More cow dung.

          The argument from free will, also called the paradox of free will or theological fatalism, contends that omniscience and free will are incompatible and that any conception of God that incorporates both properties is therefore inherently contradictory. The argument may focus on the incoherence of people having free will or on God having free will. These arguments are deeply concerned with the implications of predestination.

          You didn’t say it, but I’ll ask it. Is an attribute of your so-called that it is all powerful?

          Free will and destiny are oxymoron.

        • not so fast, is your comment still the same – “Free will and destiny are oxymoron” if you consider the term “destiny” focuses on the “destination” and Free will focuses on the journey? thought so.

        • adam

        • Ignorant Amos

          As usual you are too stupid.

          Destiny is a predetermined course of events. It may be conceived as a predetermined future, whether in general or of an individual.

          In Christian theology, God is described as omniscient, omnipotent and omnipresent; a notion which some people, Christians and non-Christians alike, believe implies that not only has God always known what choices individuals will make tomorrow, but has actually determined those choices. That is, they believe, by virtue of his foreknowledge he knows what will influence individual choices, and by virtue of his omnipotence he controls those factors. This becomes especially important for the doctrines relating to salvation and predestination.

          Define free will under such circumstances?

          It is not so much the journey, but the ability to make that journey by whichever means and the ability to choose between different possible courses of action. Destiny negates such a possibility.

        • IA, as usual, you mind is closed and you look at the words destiny and free will with a legalistic eye – I have a story for you – when my son was small, I took the family to a water park in Philadelphia. as we drove up to the ticket booth I noticed that children did not have to pay.
          Sure enough, the guard looked at my son in the back seat and said your son is free. as we drove though, my son, called from the back, Dad, he said, he’s wrong, I’m four.
          The point is, IA, you’re free, but you’re also four.

        • Ignorant Amos

          As usual, yer auld arse is out the windee Greg.

          Stupid anecdotes to add to the repertoire.

          BTW, am fifty-free…doesn’t quite work the same though does it?

        • Kodie

          The point is, you gave your son the idea that it’s ok to lie if you don’t want to pay.

        • Dys

          If God knows the decision someone will make before they make it, then their free will is an illusion. That’s not legalistic, that’s just how it works. Basically, from God’s point of view in your scenario, there is no free will, because the person couldn’t have made a different choice. Otherwise he wouldn’t be able to know it.

        • Kodie

          As usual, Greg’s comprehension is terrible. Maybe he had 2 choices, and they were both about equal. This shirt or that shirt, that girl or another girl. Maybe god doesn’t care about these details as long as you stick to the script generally. It all works out how it does, and Greg redefines destiny as predetermined as to the choices he has made – that shirt, this girl. Even if it was a bad choice, he would not think he was responsible for this “free will” and made a choice that was wrong, but that god had some kind of message, god is always sprinkling little “clues” about, like tuning in to a radio station, Greg didn’t like it, but he saw a bumper sticker advertising it, whoa! And like a weak link that he is, followed the advertisement’s suggestion because he considered it a miracle of destiny. What is it that made him choose his wife over some other lady? He must have looked for a sign to see if that was the right choice at the time. And if it was a happy marriage, he thinks it was destiny, and if it wasn’t a happy marriage, then god had given him that sign to make that choice that was predestined for Greg to learn something awful and come to Jesus. He’s not responsible at all for his free will, “free will” is something he tells himself that he has and that people like us definitely have – the reason we don’t look for or understand or believe the “signs” and make the choices god would prefer us to, is only OUR “free will,” choosing the wrong choice and not learning anything from how poorly he’s sure it will turn out, if we don’t join him at church next Fucking Sunday morning.

          In essence, he’s a deluded asshole who doesn’t know how gullible he is or how shitty his beliefs sound to a rational person. I could go on, but I have to get stuff done.

        • Ignorant Amos

          He must have looked for a sign to see if that was the right choice at the time.

          Assuming there was a choice to begin with of course.

          Anyway….a asked two questions….but Greg obfuscates with smoke and mirrors… look over there squirrels …and a dollop of misdirection to avoid the issue, something of a modus operandi.

          You didn’t say it, but I’ll ask it. Is an attribute of your so-called that it is all powerful?

          And….

          Define free will under such circumstances?

          He actually believes he has still something to offer here…sad as feck to be honest.

        • MNb

          Still your god isn’t capable of warning his beloved humans say two weeks before a natural disaster happens – a warning that would not violate free will at all, rather the contrary.

        • Greg G.

          I would expect better from an omnipotence.

        • expect? you are not even able to comprehend “omnipotence”.

        • Ignorant Amos
        • Greg G.

          The omnipotence factor means he would be able to change what he knows so everyone could have a positive destiny with no suffering, if he wanted to and if he was benevolent, he would certainly want to do that.

          The tri-omni god concept just cannot exist in this reality. You need a better religion or none at all.

        • Dys

          Because it is true of course! This is self-evident to all who choose not to walk in the way of fools.

          You mean it’s self-evident as long as you already happen to believe it.

          Your nonsensical cheerleading of the bible is little more than shouting “I really like this book and you should like it too” and when someone asks why, they basically just get “because it’s awesome”.

          Your proselytizing lacks substance.

        • Because it is true of course! This is self-evident to all who choose not to walk in the way of fools.

          Golly—must be fun to have it all figured out. I’m just a fool.

          I do wonder, though, how to distinguish your religion from all the others. Don’t they also say that nonbelievers are wrong, even if not fools?

          It is the only writing that makes viable sense above all other writings of men.

          It’s contradictory mythology. I have higher standards for the correct book written by the creator of the universe.

          It alone has the only realistic explanation for the existence of that activating power that is undeniably foremost and above all other powers.

          Gibberish.

          It contains never changing wisdom, unlike any other writings

          Hmm—maybe not. It celebrates genocide and endorses slavery. Your god is a barbarian … or maybe he doesn’t exist.

          Since you have had the opportunity of, as you say, “dumb luck,” to come upon the Word of God Almighty , you would do well to take heed to your so-called “dumb luck” opportunity and get to know Him

          Threats, eh? Let me make a counter-threat: you need to come in line with the impenetrable wishes of the Invisible Pink Unicorn (glitter be upon him).

          The problem here, I think, is that I care about evidence and you don’t. You don’t have what I need.

        • Sam Sam

          The evidence which you feign to seek is readily available, yet you reject it, even as you have thus far rejected the words of our Lord Jesus Christ.

          Life or Death? Benefit or destruction? There is no neutral territory or middle ground. A person can only be in the one camp or the other. For every shade of gray is merely a shade of darkness and tainted water is never pure. One is either a servant to Truth in God’s kingdom of life or a servant to Deception in Satan’s kingdom of death.

          So pander if you will to the only alternative master, the father of all lies, the Destroyer, the lord of the forces of death and destruction. That rebel who is at enmity with God Almighty, the Creator, the Father of truth, the Lord of the forces of life and benefit.

          But better yet, let God grace you with His light. Seek out the Lord Jesus while He still may be found, seek him out with your whole being and when found, forsake Him not, and God will cover you with His everlasting mercy against that great and terrible day of His wrath.

          As for me, I will certainly celebrate in the conquering of the forces of the enemy of life at the return of our Lord Jesus Christ. Let all who love Him rejoice at His coming! Praise to our Creator alone, the Almighty God. In Jesus name, Amen.

        • Dys

          So you don’t really have any reason why you should be taken seriously, other than that you super duper believe what you believe.

          Proselytizers don’t do well here…they’re good at spouting theology, not so much at defending it. But have fun with your silly rambling, by all means.

        • The evidence which you feign to seek is readily available, yet you reject it, even as you have thus far rejected the words of our Lord Jesus Christ.

          I’ve researched Christian apologetics for years. I don’t do it lightly; I reject it for cause.

          You think you have good evidence or a good argument for God? Present it to us.

          Life or Death? Benefit or destruction? There is no neutral territory or middle ground. A person can only be in the one camp or the other.

          Silly fantasy or reality? There is no middle ground.

          One is either a servant to Truth in God’s kingdom of life or a servant to Deception in Satan’s kingdom of death.

          Is this an online game? Can I be a mage? Or maybe an archer.

          So pander if you will to the only alternative master, the father of all lies, the Destroyer, the lord of the forces of death and destruction. That rebel who is at enmity with God Almighty, the Creator, the Father of truth, the Lord of the forces of life and benefit.

          Grow up. It’s all pretend. You have nothing but tradition to base your beliefs on.

        • MNb

          “Life or Death?”
          Death. Afterlife in your company is eternal torment.

          “Satan’s kingdom of death.”
          Eh? That doesn’t make sense. If I am dead after I pass away I won’t go to Satan’s kingdom, if my soul goes there I won’t be dead.
          So apparently your choice is between Eternal Torment by your god and Eternal Torment by your satan.
          How attractive.
          I think I’ll stay an atheist.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Like talking to the king of bad analogies, the one and only, Greg the fake lawyer, isn’t it?

        • Susan

          Your complaint is that the analogy is imperfect and incomplete.

          No. His complaint is that the analogy fails immediately.

          Yahwehjesus claims aren’t like highly contrived girlfriend scenarios BECAUSE….

          Girlfriends exist.

          That it’s in an article that assumes the existence of “GOD” and even calls it “The Existing One”, that paragraphs and paragraphs are written that make claims based on the completely unsupported premise that this being exists and then, a mangled attempt at a parallel about girlfriends is embedded therein IS the problem.

          The author says, “It’s like…” and it isn’t “like” in any way.

          You complaint is that the analogy is imperfect and incomplete. I think the author knows that.

          I think the author is clearly trying to use an inept analogy to pretend that a make-believe agent is real.

          Use that MIT degree, Bob.

          Ach!!

          I would find your smarmy, textbook Dunning-Kruger, condescending sneers intolerable if it weren’t for the delicious irony they provided.

        • Ignorant Amos

          That it’s in an article that assumes the existence of “GOD”…

          It’s a bit like that dough-ball William Lane Craig’s argument for the probability of the Resurrection. He tries to use a Bayesian interpretation of a load of bollocks to obfuscate…like he is prone to do as you well know…

          In a debate where he creased Bart Ehrman…

          But that’s not all. Dr. Ehrman just assumes that the probability of the resurrection on our background knowledge [Pr(R/B)] is very low. But here, I think, he’s confused. What, after all, is the resurrection hypothesis? It’s the hypothesis that Jesus rose supernaturally from the dead. It is not the hypothesis that Jesus rose naturally from the dead. That Jesus rose naturally from the dead is fantastically improbable. But I see no reason whatsoever to think that it is improbable that God raised Jesus from the dead.”

          http://atheistexperience.blogspot.co.uk/2009/02/case-study-william-lane-craig-vs-bart.html

          Of course if God exist’s, anything goes…so the BT is then redundant anyway. God-did-it isn’t as fan-dangled as using a lot of Gish Galloping technical jargon to impress the gullible though is it? Craig does the same thing with cosmology when arguing his pet KCA. He’s also a lying prick too.

          Assuming one’s God exists as a given premise is always going to be the wrong place to start, but the holy rollers are just too daft to realise this little ditty.

        • TheNuszAbides

          the bethlehemstar poster’s ‘case’ hinges entirely on the definitional flexibility of the word ‘relationship’. not good enough. next.

    • Jack Baynes

      The original analogy assumes that we’ve seen “the girl” and we know she’s desirable. That simply isn’t the case.

      Then it assume we’ve made no attempt to approach her. That often isn’t true, as many ex-Christians have left the faith after never getting any acknowledgment from “the girl”

      The analogy doesn’t work at all.

      But thank you for approaching this more honestly than Frank.

      • SteveK

        You’re reading a lot more into the analogy than I can find.

        • Jack Baynes

          No, that’s what the analogy says. The girl is right there, you just have to ask her out.

          But she’s not right there, she’s nowhere to be seen. The Christians just insist she’s there.

          And many ex-Christians DID try to ask her out, but got absolutely no response.

          If I’m interpreting the analogy wrong, why don’t you explain what it’s supposed to mean?

        • SteveK

          The girl is the object of desire taken from ‘the argument from desire’ and she is put into an analogy to make a point about the gospel and a relationship with Christ.

          Whether you believe God exists, or not, doesn’t do anything to alter the validity of the analogy. It tells the Christian story.

        • Jack Baynes

          And what point are they trying to make?

          That God’s right there and you just have to seek him out.
          And there the analogy falls down.

        • SteveK

          All analogies break down at some point.

        • Jack Baynes

          But this one fails from the start

        • SteveK

          It’s telling a part of the Christian story by analogy that happens to be the Christian story. It doesn’t fail to do that.

        • TheNuszAbides

          i had a suspicion that the core of the referenced post was the imaginative smarm of the term ‘relationship’ as conveniently applied to an individual’s ostensible interactions with yahwehjesus. i should’ve dropped it there, but i wasted the effort of looking to see whether there was more to it. they’d sure like to think there’s more to it! but nope–that’s the foundation of the whole shadow.

    • The whole point is that the first analogy is false. It fails because it doesn’t relate to how human beings actually live. It’s not just a matter of opinion; it’s a matter of fact.

      In this world, good and just people often suffer horribly, bad and unjust people often do quite well, those that pray for miracles don’t get them, those that need rescuing don’t get saved, and so on. God doesn’t intervene. The people that go to sleep wailing out for God to cure them of their horrible diseases wake up with nothing changed. That’s an iron law of the human experience.

      Imagine what if Jesus (the ‘universal salvation’-esque Gospel of Mark-like positive Jesus that’s the ‘suffering messiah’ who wants everyone helped, not the alternative Jesuses in John’s gospel, Revelation, the Left Behind series, etc that are powerful kingly warriors that wish to smite the earth) actively was a real force in people’s lives at the here and now rather than only being someone that rescues you after death– if praying that a relative’s illness to be taken away worked, if food could be summed up out of nowhere to feed refugees, etc. That would be, at the very least, an interesting event.

      THEN, Jesus could be thought of like a pretty girl that one sees directly and considers worth dating due to directly experiencing all of that happiness. I understand the majority viewpoint of Christians when they say that God is caring and loving, so God has a good reason for not interfering. But, even assuming for the sake of argument that they’re right, the original analogy is just so false that it hurts.

      P.S. It’s also possible that the fundamentalists are right and everyone else is wrong, so God does intervene and is actively giving people disease, causing wars, and the like because of his desire to hurt and punish people (for their “sins”, because “suffering builds character”, or whatever). But, in that case God, is just plain evil and the analogy doesn’t even begin to work either.

  • I would really hope that the traditional Christian concept of God from Biblical literalism and inerrancy doesn’t exist, because that God is– to use the relationship terms– like a Ted Bundy-esque stalker, rapist, murderer, and all-around oppressor who’s definition of “love” is a black-to-white, white-to-black inversion of the regular term.

    God deliberately murdered more unborn children in his global flood than Planned Parenthood has in the past all ten years combined, and yet nobody’s calling to de-fund God. (Not that I agree with usage of the term “unborn children” in the first place, but the point remains.) Goodness…

    Thankfully, most Jews and Christians see the Bible as a set of stories, poetry, metaphors, and so on. So, there was no real flood, no real Moses, etc even though they’re positive that God exists and currently has a hand in things. I’m very glad for that, I guess, in comparison to fundamentalism. But I still have to look at the majority of people and say to them that, well, if you’re about 75% of the way to just wholesale rejecting the Bible as any kind of either moral or historical source of information at all… why not go all the way? What is it about the 25% that you still feel is actually both literal and true that honestly stands out?

  • voxvot

    Goodness me Bob you love a strawman don’t you? In your analogy the friend promises that you will meet a physical real life girl, right? But the girl just never materializes, so Christianity is bullshit. However I have yet to meet a Christian who has said, “Hey, why don’t you come to Church, there’s this guy called Jesus who lives there and you will get to meet him and shake his hand”, and you go, but he’s never in when you call is he?

    What the Christians are really saying is, accept the possibility of Christ and you will see your outlook on life change, and when this changes your life will change and these changes will make you happier and a better person.

    • Dys

      It’s not a strawman. Christianity attempts to sell a personal relationship with Jesus. It’s one of those safely completely unverifiable promises religion makes.

      • voxvot

        Not true. If Christianity was about a personal relationship with God then there would be no need for the church. In the most popular Christian religions it is taught that salvation can only come through the church. Nice try ‘tho.

        • Dys

          Uh, yes actually it is true. But apparently you’ve been living in a cave for a while, and missed all the Christians who say exactly what I stated. It’s almost an evangelical motto at this point.

          Or do all those “not a religion, but a personal relationship” nutters not count as real Christians? And honestly, even the Christians who understand that Christianity is a religion often claim to have a personal relationship with Jesus.

          You can keep trying, of course, but since I know these people exist, you’re going to keep failing. At the end of the day, you’re wrong.

        • voxvot

          You are basically saying that the “some Christians” you know are all Christians. None of the major Christian Churches make a “personal relationship with Jesus” the keystone of their faith. You are like a blind man grabbing an elephant’s tail and insisting that an elephant is identical to a snake.

        • Dys

          Actually, that’s not what I said at all. You, on the other hand, are basically dismissing a large portion of Christianity because you’d apparently like to pretend they don’t exist. All I can say is that if you really don’t think there are plenty of churches that actively promote having a personal relationship with Jesus, then you don’t get out very much.

          You are like a blind man grabbing an elephant’s tail and insisting that an elephant is identical to a snake.

          Reality denialism has you making shitty metaphors.

        • voxvot

          I’m not pretending they don’t exist, I am saying they are an unrepresentative minority.

          “Reality denialism” is just a trite piece of sloganeering and no substitute for an argument.

        • Dys

          And I’m saying they’re hardly a minority at all. It appears all you’re really trying to argue is that it’s not listed in the official dogmas of the religion, which seems to be intentionally missing the point.

          no substitute for an argument.

          Good thing it wasn’t an argument then. It was merely my lead-in to stating that your metaphor was terrible. And it was.

        • voxvot

          Terrible in what way, was it inaccurate, or did you just feel an ad hom sluttering to get out?

        • Dys

          Did you not quite pick up on the fact that I was saying the metaphor was inaccurate? I thought it was kind of obvious, and didn’t require having it spelled out.

          So, no, it wasn’t an ad hom, and your campaign to disallow the personal relationship angle as an important aspect of modern Christianity still hasn’t gotten off the ground.

        • voxvot

          You didn’t explain how the metaphor was “inaccurate”, you said it was “shitty”, which is clearly ad hom fallacy.

          Also, I didn’t say that what you clumsily call, “the personal relationship angle” wasn’t an important aspect of “modern” Christianity; I did say that it was was not a mainstay of Christianity generally, however my main argument was that it wasn’t apologetics, which it isn’t, so uncle Bob objecting to it as such is a strawman, which it is.

          That’s a lot of ways to be wrong in one post, well done.

        • Dys

          Considering you can’t tell the difference between an ad hom and an insult, you’re not doing much better yourself.

          however my main argument was that it wasn’t apologetics,

          And I pointed out that Christians have used it as apologetics – not laid out logically the way Bob presented it, but the main idea certainly has been. I agree that it doesn’t get used as a formal apologetic. As an informal apologetic however, it gets used all the time.

          Keep trying

        • voxvot

          Okay, cite some examples.

          BTW, the fact that you think insult is an improvement on ad hom indicates the puerile nature of the atheist community.

        • Dys

          It’s pathetically easy to get some examples…just Google “personal relationship with God” and “personal relationship with Jesus”

          And the fact you’re trying to dismiss the difference between an insult and an ad hominem as puerile indicates that you really don’t grasp the difference. It also demonstrates an infantile aversion to being corrected…apparently you can’t stand being wrong, so even when you’re sorta/kinda forced to own up to making a mistake, you have to include an insult with it to assuage your wounded ego.

        • Kodie

          You’re both right. The church would never encourage a wholly independent personal relationship with Jesus. They need you to keep coming back to church!

        • Philmonomer

          Not true. If Christianity was about a personal relationship with God then there would be no need for the church. In the most popular Christian religions it is taught that salvation can only come through the church. Nice try ‘tho.

          What makes a Christian a Christian?
          How does a Christian achieve salvation?

        • voxvot

          Belief in the redemptive message of Jesus and changing one’s life in conformity with the message of Jesus. Oh, sorry, I forgot to say, “duhhh”

        • Philmonomer

          Well, there you go. No personal relationship with Jesus necessary.

          I’m curious:

          1) What is the redemptive message of Jesus?
          2) What would you do differently in your life (or how would you live your life differently), if you were not a Christian?

    • Kodie

      What are you selling Jesus for? I don’t really understand why people need to believe this story to change their life. If you want to change, you can do it!

      • voxvot

        Maybe because there is only one truth, and within a miasma of misunderstanding and historical ignorance, Christianity contains this kernel of truth? And maybe the only meaningful change is to orient your consciousness toward the truth, and the quickest way to do that for Western Europeans would be to examine their traditional path to truth?

        • adam

          “Maybe because there is only one truth, and within a miasma of misunderstanding and historical ignorance, Christianity contains this kernel of truth?”

          Obviously christiany FAILS where truth is concerned.

        • voxvot

          Haven’t nine people just been killed by an atheist?

        • adam

          Apparently not, he believed in the bible god and apparently worshiped one of YOUR ‘gods’ angels, Satan.

        • voxvot

          I’ll take your word for that. Since Satanists reject the Christ. Nine lives would have been saved if this man had turned to Christ instead of turning to Satan.

        • Otto

          Who should this guy have turned to to keep him from killing all those people.

          *hint* He was already a Christian.

          https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anders_Behring_Breivik#Religious_and_political_views

        • adam
        • adam

          Satan is the creation of YOUR bible ‘god’

          Nine whole lives?
          I thought it was 10….

        • adam

          “Since Satanists reject the Christ.”

          But they believe in god/Christ so they are not atheists.

        • Otto

          Truth can be demonstrated not just asserted as you have done.

        • voxvot

          New truths are discovered every day. Known truths are finite, unknown truths may be infinite. Some things are undemonstrable, like what happens after you are dead. All that can be demonstrated to be true is true, this does not mean that all truths are demonstrable.

        • Otto

          That is all correct.

          Please explain how you can know an unknown truth is in fact true?

        • voxvot

          The fact that you can’t know it to be true doesn’t make it untrue. Beyond the known, in the words of Robert Burns, “we may guess and fear”, the problem with rationalist materialism is that it denies the existence of anything beyond its own scope.

        • Jack Baynes

          So everyone should assume that Thor exists.

        • adam

          Blasphemer

        • voxvot

          But everyone doesn’t.

        • Jack Baynes

          Just like the Christian God.

        • Susan

          But everyone doesn’t.

          That could be said about every deity, in fact, every supernatural claim humans have ever invented.

          Jack Baynes responded to your comment above, which opened with this statement:

          The fact that you can’t know it to be true doesn’t make it untrue.

          Jack’s point about Thor stands.

          Do you even realize how deeply “But everyone doesn’t.” undermines your original point?

        • Ignorant Amos

          Oh goody…the Space Ponies are back on….it’s great when a woo wooist shoots themselves on the big toe.

        • MR

          I wonder what kind of evidence vv would demand in order to believe that Thor existed.

        • Susan

          I wonder what kind of evidence vv would demand in order to believe that Thor existed.

          We might never know. He seemed to drop in to talk down to everyone and then left without saying anything of substance.

        • Otto

          The fact that you can’t know it to be true doesn’t make it untrue.

          The fact that you can’t know it to be true doesn’t make it true either!

          Rationalist materialism does not deny the existence of anything beyond its own scope. What it does do is say that it is irrational to believe claims that something exists without a proper demonstration, i.e. evidence.

        • voxvot

          It’s irrational to think that finite intelligence and finite information will ever lead to anything other than finite knowledge.

        • adam

          And then why PRETEND that there is infinite knowledge from you finite knowledge base?

        • Otto

          Yeah…So?

          Does that mean it is therefore rational to start accepting unfounded claims as true?

        • Kodie

          We may guess and fear – why? Make up something to be afraid of?

        • adam

          “Some things are undemonstrable, like what happens after you are dead.”

          Oh, it is VERY demonstrable, the body DECAYS
          Left unattended the flesh and organs rot.

        • Esquilax

          If you can’t demonstrate a thing how can you possibly know that it’s true?

        • Kodie

          Maybe it’s the biggest support group with the biggest marketing push.

        • voxvot

          But you said that people can change of their own accord. If I can have any shoes I want free online, I’m not going to be enticed by any bricks and mortar shoe store to spend money in their establishment am I? People turn to religion precisely because they can’t find the answers on their own.

        • Kodie

          That doesn’t mean that everyone has nowhere to turn but religion. Whatever religion offers in ways of motivating a person to turn their life around, so can other ways you’re overlooking. I don’t personally say that religion doesn’t have something to offer a person uh, spiritually, for lack of a better word, I guess. I just don’t believe in the spirit. It is just a psychological method, and neither does religion always provide that answer. I deny your claim that religion gives anyone the truth.

        • Ignorant Amos

          And maybe if my arsehole was square, I could shite coal bricks.

          It is ALL about the maybe’s with these bugger’s isn’t it?

    • Otto

      “and when this changes your life will change and these changes will make you happier and a better person.”

      And yet when it is pointed out that the happiness and behavior of Christians is not any better then anyone else I am constantly told Christianity is a “hospital for sinners not a hotel for saints” or some similar line of bs.

      • voxvot

        What’s your scientific base for quantifying happiness? Christianity significantly consists of people who converted to belief in Christ, who specifically claim that their conversion made their lives happier, but atheist just magically know how people really feel; not much science in your science is there?

        • adam

          ” Christianity significantly consists of people who converted to belief in Christ, who specifically claim that their conversion made their lives happier,”

        • Otto

          Secular countries that are predominately atheistic such as Norway, Sweden, Japan tend to rank rather high in polls that track contentment in groups.

          You are the one that claimed Christians were happier and behaved better. All I said was that there is no indication that what you claim is actually true, that Christians rank no higher in the categories you claim they do and you are the one that provided nothing to substantiate your claims otherwise.

          If you want to rely on personal anecdotes here is one for you. I am far happier now that I do not identify as a Christian and the atheist blogs here are full of ex-Christians that feel the same.

        • voxvot

          Japan secular? Okay, if you say so, how about atheistic countries like Belarus and Cuba? Don’t think you’ll find they poll very highly in happiness ratings. Communism is a far more modern ideology than Christianity, claimed by Karl Marx to be science based (and hence not actually an ideology technically).

        • Otto

          Again…you are the one that claimed Christians are happier and behave better. I just pointed out examples that refuted your point. I didn’t say non-christians are happier but I did point out examples where it can be shown they are no less happy. You are the one that made the initial claim, don’t blame me that you can’t back it up.

    • Goodness me, where would I be without you to pull my ass out of the fire again and again! Someone should childproof reality so I can stumble around blindly without you having to rescue me.

      In your analogy the friend promises that you will meet a physical real life girl, right? But the girl just never materializes, so Christianity is bullshit.

      Not in my mind … but if you see how that conclusion can be drawn, cool! Very little stands in the way of your rapier.

      However I have yet to meet a Christian who has said, “Hey, why don’t you come to Church, there’s this guy called Jesus who lives there and you will get to meet him and shake his hand”, and you go, but he’s never in when you call is he?

      Nor I. But you do understand that I didn’t make up this example, right? I provided the link. Christians believe that guy/girlfriend is a useful analog to guy/Jesus.

      I you agree with me, why the whining?

      What the Christians are really saying is, accept the possibility of Christ and you will see your outlook on life change, and when this changes your life will change and these changes will make you happier and a better person.

      One wonders why they don’t use an analogy that maps to that. It’s almost like they’re trying to deceive. Since we’re on the same page, I welcome your help. They might listen to you more than me.

      • MR

        What the Christians are really saying is, accept the possibility of Christ and you will see your outlook on life change, and when this changes your life will change and these changes will make you happier and a better person.

        Mormons, Muslims and all manner of cult leaders say similar things. I wonder, if a lie makes me happier, even arguably a better person, would I really want to take that route?

        For me, becoming an atheist made me a better person because it made me think more deeply about why it’s important for me to do the right thing—as opposed to having God (the people of my church) simply dictate to me what I should or shouldn’t do. I gained much more empathy for people than I ever did as a Christian when I believed that only Christians were “right” (and then, only “my” Christians) and everyone else was either deceived by Satan, like Catholics, or just plain evil, like Muslims.

        I read that quote and it just creeps me out—it’s asking me to adopt a cult-like mentality…, like Jim Jones inviting me to come drink the Kool-Aid.

        • I want to see the truth myself, but I try not to speak for everyone. Some people’s lives truly suck, and if they need some sort of mental crutch (like this torment is temporary, and they’ll get a big reward in the afterlife), I don’t think I can despise that.

        • Kodie

          Right, I took the other approach initially. I think a lot of religions use “self-help” kind of approach and offer some basic psychological habits that can help a person, but also how they “prove” they are the correct belief. It’s deceptive to think or propose, for example, that Jesus is essential to the advice that helps someone, and it’s a package deal. That’s why I told voxvot that if someone wants to change, they can change. It’s not really that simple, but people who turn to religion and think it made all the difference in their new lives turned around from some old life that was not working for them, are positively convinced that Jesus helped them. That makes me sick, actually, that people don’t realize if they change their emotional approach to something, practice meditational prayer, resolve to make a new habit, it will often have a great effect in their life, no Jesus needed.

          There are bits like this in every religion, and people credit the supernatural for it rather than the very natural. They didn’t plug in Jesus, they changed their own habits, and of course, joined a support group called “church” where they get instant cheerleaders, which I don’t think hurts. Change your daily habits, add supportive people, wow, no Jesus needed.

          Then again, there are people who are perfect targets of religion. If you have no hope, find Jesus. If you think nobody loves you, Jesus loves you. For some reason, people are inspired by this nonsense. The people who say they used to be atheists (and I don’t tend to disbelieve that is how they considered themselves) were weak and self-destructive because nothing mattered. The only way they can be convinced that anything matters is if you create for them a fantasy where things matter. I think if they were not brought up with religion (as most people were), they were still brought up with the damaging idea that, without god, everything is meaningless, hopeless, etc. Even though this is false, I think it is possible for people without god to feel that way because they have been taught that they should.

          With respect to the original post, religious people are convinced that god exists, so they would always/often try to approach a non-believer as if they are in some state of doubt and need only to be convinced somehow. That god isn’t evident, and they know it, you have to suppress your disbelief and invite the delusion to come to you. However, I know it is only the power of suggestion. Some people are suggestible, and it seems they have no sense of atheism from their side because god seems so obvious once you “see” him. They’re approaching disbelievers as if we’re merely unwilling, and the task is to convince us to just try to be open and willing, just to try. It works if the target is merely unwilling, and I think some people are (and I don’t mind if they also identify/ied as atheists).

        • It’s like the 12-step demand: “you can’t do this yourself.” But the person who turned around a destructive habit did indeed do it themselves (and possibly with the help of family, friends, and professionals). When they become dependent on Jesus, they’ll depend on their imaginary friend next time there’s trouble rather than realizing that that drive came from within.

        • It’s amazing that real friends (who are flawed) can take a back seat to imaginary Jesus (who is perfect).

        • TheNuszAbides

          again, the most resonant comparison is not with amorphous “relationship” terminology, but rather with manipulative/abusive controllers and ‘corrupt’ parenting. lazy repetition of the kind of dogma that never really needs to get written down – ‘because i said so’, ‘because i’m responsible for you’, ‘because i’m all grown up’, ‘because otherwise you’ll get the belt’, blended with gems like ‘it’s for your own good’, ‘i love you so much i just can’t let you become a Bad Person’, etc. in many circles ‘stern’ parenting still gets a pass because little or no thought is given to challenge the notion that some [people/age groups/cultures] only understand ‘discipline’ and other unfalsifiable horseshit. i didn’t stumble over Alice Miller’s work until last year, but it’s been rather eye-opening (speaking as someone considering becoming a parent soon). anyway, tangent …

    • adam

      “What the Christians are really saying is, accept the possibility of
      Christ and you will see your outlook on life change, and when this
      changes your life will change and these changes will make you happier
      and a better person.”

      Uhhh, not so much…….

      • Ignorant Amos

        How would the fuckwits even know…it certainly isn’t demonstrable or even obvious?

  • Sam Sam

    I posted the following to Ron below through a link not knowing where the post was going to land. But after reading through some of the many errant He said, She said posts below I figured re-posting here what God actually says through His scriptures would be most appropriate.

    Believe it or not, but its your choice for God did endow you with freewill. You certainly can’t claim that you didn’t receive the capacity of freewill as if it was of your own doing because you had no choosing in that matter. That matter was determined by the sole discretion and goodwill of God Almighty who has established the boundaries of all things in Heaven and Earth, God Almighty even being the Creator thereof.

    Ron
    I don’t think it was God who failed you but rather you failed to follow through with what God requires of you. To continually seek Him out with all your heart and to learn of Him and His ways so that you may learn to do those things which are pleasing and acceptable in His sight as He commands of you.

    Sounds like you gave up before you even started. Perhaps because the import of the gospel of God’s peace towards us and salvation from God’s just judgment of wrath rightly owed to us who rebel (sin) against the God of Truth wasn’t fully presented to you.

    But he giveth more grace. Wherefore he saith, God resisteth the proud, but giveth grace unto the humble. 7 Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you. Cleanse your hands, ye sinners; and purify your hearts, ye double minded. James 4:6-8

    The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God. Psalm 14:2

    Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you, and LEARN of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light (Mat.11:28-30). God’s yoke is that Holy Spirit anointing of Love, Joy, Peace, Longsufering, Gentleness, Goodness, Faith, Meekness, Temperance, Patience, and such like.
    — He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him. John 14:21 If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love. John 15:10 This is my commandment, That ye love one another, as I have loved you. John 15:12
    — And whatsoever we ask, we receive of him, because we keep his commandments, and do those things that are pleasing in his sight. 1 John 3:22

    But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find him, if thou seek him with all thy heart and with all thy soul. Deuteronomy 4:29

    — Seek ye the Lord while he may be found, call ye upon him while he is near: Isaiah 55:6
    — Seek the Lord and his strength, seek his face continually. 1 Chronicles 16:11
    — Seek the Lord, and his strength: seek his face evermore. Psalm 105:4
    — When thou saidst, Seek ye my face; my heart said unto thee, Thy face, Lord, will I seek. Psalm 27:8
    — And they that know thy name will put their trust in thee: for thou, Lord, hast not forsaken them that seek thee. Psalm 9:10
    — The Lord is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. Lamentations 3:25
    — The meek shall eat and be satisfied: they shall praise the Lord that seek him: your heart shall live for ever. Psalm 22:26

    And thou, Solomon my son, know thou the God of thy father, and serve him with a perfect heart and with a willing mind: for the Lord searcheth all hearts, and understandeth all the imaginations of the thoughts: if thou seek him, he will be found of thee; but if thou forsake him, he will cast thee off for ever. 1 Chronicles 28:9
    –Seek ye the Lord, all ye meek of the earth, which have wrought his judgment; seek righteousness, seek meekness: it may be ye shall be hid in the day of the Lord’s anger. Zephaniah 2:3
    — Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the Lord understand all things. Proverbs 28:5
    —And he did evil, because he prepared not his heart to seek the Lord. 2 Chronicles 12:14

    And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind [with God’s words of truth], that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:2
    — Now the God of peace… 21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. Hebrews 13:20-21
    — For the kingdom of God is not meat and drink; but righteousness, and peace, and joy in the Holy Ghost. (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth (Eph. 5:9)). 18 For he that in these things serveth Christ is acceptable to God, and approved of men. Romans 14:17-18
    — I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service. Romans 12:1
    — But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. Hebrews 13:16

    The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise. Psalm 51:17 The Lord is nigh unto them that are of a broken heart; and saveth such as be of a contrite spirit. Psalm 34:18

    Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. Matthew 7:21
    — For many are called, but few are chosen. Matthew 22:14
    — Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Matthew 7:14

    Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. Galatians 6:7

    Know ye not that the unrighteous shall not inherit the kingdom of God? Be not deceived: neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor effeminate, nor abusers of themselves with mankind, 10 Nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners, shall inherit the kingdom of God (1 Cor. 6:9-10). Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, 20 Idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, 21 Envyings, murders, drunkenness, revellings, and such like: of the which I tell you before, as I have also told you in time past, that they which do such things shall not inherit the kingdom of God. Galatians 5:19-21

    But thou, O man of God, flee these things; and follow after righteousness, godliness, faith, love, patience, meekness (1 Tim.6:11). Be ye therefore followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour. Ephesians 5:1-2

    Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. (John 16:13). But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him (1 John 2:27). (For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) Ephesians 5:9

    Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day (Psalm 25:5). For we through the Spirit wait for the hope of righteousness [eternal life] by faith (Gal. 5:5). And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us (Rom. 5:5). And God’s Love worketh no ill to his neighbour: therefore love is the fulfilling of the law (Rom 13:10). For all the law is fulfilled in one word, even in this; Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself (Gal 5:14)

    For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men, 12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world; 13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ; 14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works. Titus 2:11-14

    Jesus Christ, the Son of God, came and offered himself (as an innocent man) to buy back from the grips of death and hell all sinners who willingly choose to forsake their sinful ways and return back to God and walk in His right ways of truth and life. This all solely by God’s grace alone through our faith (belief and trust) in God Almighty and in the deliverance power of His resurrected Son Jesus Christ.

    How shall we escape, if we neglect so great salvation; which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him? Hebrews 2:3

    Wherefore, my beloved, as ye have always obeyed, not as in my presence only, but now much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling. Philippians 2:12

    • Dys

      TL;DR, basically just a bunch of “God is super-awesome” chanting.

    • Thought2Much

      Why do Christians do this? When we see posts like this, is it a sign that the commenter is mentally ill? Should we be trying to find this person medication and therapy?

      At least when they do this, I can just scroll past it. When I used to be stuck in church, I had no choice but to sit there and listen to this kind of babble.

  • I find the analogy logical, which is probably why I find it compelling.

    To help you understand, BobS, what the heck is going on with the analogy, I recommend the movie Jerry McGuire – one of the memorable lines in that movie was ‘You complete me”. The reason why this line is effective is because we all get what he is saying. There is in all of us, as the apologist says, a “vaccum” that we need to fill.

    “My point is that I don’t find the story logical. What’s the girlfriend doing in the story? ”

    Huh? BobS, what about in Genesis? Remember? God created Eve because he perceived that Adam needed Eve – to complete him.

    “How does that relationship illustrate our relationship with Jesus? Jesus is like the perfect girlfriend … that you just never get around to committing to?

    Jesus reveals that he is the fulfillment of all our needs – everything else is like a sugar substitute. Jesus is sugar – all else, is well, garbage.

    But, the logic remains that the human companion, in this case, the girlfriend, is the substitute we naturally think of first to fill the need when it is, in fact, Jesus.

    Make the commitment – Whose coming with me?

    • Kodie

      This “void” is the biggest crock of shit, the emotional appeal, you didn’t know you were broken until someone told you that you were. Maybe you should spend more time listening to atheists instead of selling your snake oil.

    • Dys

      Ugh…you’re really going with the god-shaped hole garbage?

      Make the commitment – Whose coming with me?

      Hopefully no one. I can’t imagine anyone reading your tripe and finding you convincing in the slightest. Quite the opposite.

      • Dys, I’ll wager that BobS, first decides if the comment is supportive of the atheist point of view – and then rules on whether it is logical – for example, Bob S writes -” I don’t find the story compelling, but that’s not my point. My point is that I don’t find the story logical.”

        • Dys

          Right…and you’re obviously a beacon of unbiased logic and rational thought. Except for pretty much every comment you’ve made that demonstrates that’s clearly not the case.

          And really, I was just commenting on the tired, sad (and false) cliche of the god-shape hole crap and voicing my disgust with it.

        • So if I say, “I reject that claim,” you know that I’m only saying that because it doesn’t support my presuppositions? Sounds a bit bold.

        • Dys

          Greg presupposes a lot of his positions in order to “prove” them…

        • MNb

          Yeah, and calls it subtle logic that has to sink in while sleeping.

        • Greg’s as shrewd as a serpent and innocent as a dove (or maybe it’s shrewd as a dove and innocent as a serpent).

      • No, no–Jesus is sugar.

        (So Jesus rots your teeth? I’m confused again!)

        • Greg G.

          There will be gnashing of teeth so teeth will be provided.

        • TheNuszAbides

          cavities will spread until morale improves. (and maybe even after!)

        • John Hinkle

          Ah, a Dave Allen reference!

        • Dys

          It’s also telling that he equates the girlfriend with garbage via sugar…Greg’s not good at the whole analogy thing.

      • Greg G.

        He wears dirty goggles with a God-shaped clean spot.

    • MNb

      “I find the analogy logical”
      Yeah, you find any analogy logical as long as it confirms your prejudices.

      “There is in all of us, as the apologist says, a “vaccum” that we need to fill.”
      BWAHAHAHAHA! Not only you don’t know how to spell vacuum, not only you pull off another lame apology to complement one that already is lame, you also totally display a total lack of christian humility with your “all of us”.

      “what about in Genesis?”
      BWAHAHAHAHA! You just confirmed how poor the analogy of the dream-girl is. See, you postulate here that your god is capable of taking inititatives and reacting to initiatives. But he doesn’t do anything like that at all when a human being seeks a relationship with god in the 21st Century. It’s the believer who does all the work. At the other hand when I had a crush on a woman she invariably reacted, either in a positive or in a negative way. But your god or Jesus? Just silence.

      “Make the commitment”
      To your immaterial version of a teddy bear? I have grown over it a long time ago.

    • To a girlfriend? Maybe–I’m certain that she exists. But Jesus? Where’s the evidence that he even exists?

      The analogy sucks, which was the point I made above.

    • Greg G.

      Jesus is sugar

      What about diabetics?

      If your “need” is filled by an imaginary Jesus, you don’t really have a need. It is just psychosomatic.

      • try to think back to before you were married, if you can, (if you are allowed), didn’t you have this knowledge that there was someone who existed, who you had not met yet, that you wanted as your life companion? if it was too long ago to remember, just listen to the song “Tonight” from West Side Story to jog your memory. That’s not imaginary my friend, that’s the vacuum.

        • adam

          “try to think back to before you were married, if you can, (if you are allowed), didn’t you have this knowledge that there was someone who existed, who you had not met yet, that you wanted as your life companion? ”

          You mean like being sure Santa would bring you that Daisy BB gun?

          “didn’t you have this knowledge”

          So you cant tell the difference between knowledge and desire, not surprising….considering the propaganda you’ve bought into.

        • MNb

          The difference is that my “somebody I wanted as my life companion” is made of flesh and blood. That’s also what “Tonight” is about. Indeed that desire is not imaginary. That’s not the point. Your desire for an imaginary Sky Daddy is not imaginary either.
          Sky Daddy himself totally is. It’s the immaterial replacement for a teddy bear.
          Or have you ever had physical sex with Jesus? No? Then even stupid you might understand why the analogy is false.

        • Ignorant Amos

          Or have you ever had physical sex with Jesus? No? Then even stupid you might understand why the analogy is false.

          To quote one….

          http://dagobah.net/t200/bwahahahaha.jpg

        • Ok, so if you concede that there exists a desire for God – as you write – “Your desire for an imaginary Sky Daddy is not imaginary either”.
          Then, how in the world can you suggest that an entity made of flesh and blood could possibly satisfy the desire for God? It’s as if you are recommending a square peg for a round hole.
          Sheesh.

        • MNb

          Not me. You are the one suggesting that “an entity made of flesh and blood could possibly satisfy the desire for God”. I am the one says who you are deluding yourself – that’s exactly what “imaginary Sky Daddy” and “immaterial replacement for a teddy bear” mean. Yup – you are the one who tries to fit a square pig in a round hole, not me, with your “commitment to God” or whatever you call it.
          Not so sorry for you fake lawyer, your analogy spits you in your face.

        • Kodie

          There exists an immature desire to be loved more than humans can love you and to live longer than you will, no, nothing on earth can satisfy you like your fantasy, you fucking moron. This desire often arises after some asshole Christian feeds someone the insecurity that you have something someone else doesn’t have, and they are foolish or wanting enough to believe you can offer them anything but stupidity.

          You don’t have any positive notes, Greg. You are a waste of oxygen entirely.

        • Greg G.

          No, I didn’t. I thought I would end up with a tall blonde but she turned out to be a short Asian lady. I’m not complaining at all but what you are trying to liken to faith was completely off.

        • exactly – 1. you’re a human so you have a desire 2. you’re a human, so you search in vain this world for that which will satisfy it 3. the theist understands God is the only object that can satisfy this desire in humans. 4. the atheist still thinks it’s a tall blonde

        • Kodie

          1. you’re still a fucking idiot. 2, you are selfish, vain, arrogant, and incapable of coping with reality, 3., you have an unrealistic desire for something that doesn’t exist, and 4, only an imaginary character can fulfill your fucking idiot desires. 5. don’t imagine we’re all fragile jelly like you are.

    • adam

      “There is in all of us, as the apologist says, a “vaccum” that we need to fill.”

      Well not all of us, but we understand ‘vaccum’ needs Greg

      • The vacuum is also the reminder that we need to establish a spiritual bond with others. Is it cold in the world of the atheist, not feeling connected to the spirit of his fellow person? I’ve got a nice warm blanket for you and it has Jesus’ face on it.

        • adam

          I have no vacuum need to establish a bond with an imaginary spirit.

          The vacuum is just a literary TOOL, like you for those in power to get what they WANT https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/2c9bc538dc07a12452d6825dfc591ac0a5d2818ee9ccc4faafd5c998debc18a4.jpg

        • I understand – you believe the analogy of a girl friend is effective if God and the spirit was not imaginary. Is Love imaginary? Love is a byproduct of the spirit I am talking about. Can you really deny there is a spirit that connects us?

        • adam

          ” Love is a byproduct of the spirit I am talking about.”

          Yep, ‘christian love’

        • adam

          ” Love is a byproduct of the spirit I am talking about.”

          Yep, ‘christian love’.

        • adam

          ” Love is a byproduct of the spirit I am talking about.”

          Yep, ‘christian love’..

        • The analogy of the girlfriend is relevant if Jesus/God/Spirit are standing there, physically, just like she would be.

          Otherwise, it’s crap and an embarrassment to an adult offering it as a useful analogy.

        • Why would the atheist’s world be cold? We value companionship just like anyone else.