Exchange on Miracles and Hyper-Rationalism (vs. Atheist)

Exchange on Miracles and Hyper-Rationalism (vs. Atheist) December 7, 2015


A miracle is not a mere magical trick.  Zan Zig performing with rabbit and roses, including hat trick and levitation. Advertising poster for the magician (1899) [Wikimedia CommonsCreative Commons Attribution 2.0 Generic license] 

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cest_moi appears to be an atheist or agnostic. This occurred in the combox of my post, Bible on the Perpetual Virginity of Mary. His words will be in blue. I’ll leave his ungrammatical writing as is.

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if a person is making critical assumptions to determine a sensible explanation of the facts … the conclusion drawn would be that a virgin birth is a physical impossibility

making the argument over perpetuality between competing sects, in fact, nonsensical … that seems sensible to me

Yeah; all miracles are “impossible.” That’s why they are miracles, by definition.

It’s always good to defend what one believes to be the truth: and not just me as an individual, but also a truth taught continuously in the Christian Church for almost 2,000 years.

it is evident from the range of possible definitions of impossible that this then would be seeming to assume uncritically, n’est-ce pas?

A miracle is believed in faith (presupposing its possibility) and based on sufficient eyewitness testimony, medical / scientific confirmation, etc.

this does raise the question … what eyewitness testimony or medical/scientific confirmation, etc is there of this supposed miracle?

as far as i can tell neither of the authors who relate this story in your primary reference source were present to provide eyewitness testimony

The Virgin Birth is the miracle. No one could have seen that. It’s believed on faith, based on revelation.

Perpetual virginity is a vow that Mary made. It can be supported based on the biblical data that we have, which shows no siblings of Jesus. That is consistent with the doctrine but doesn’t absolutely prove it.

fair enough … it’s miracle to be believed solely based on faith without eyewitness testimony or medical/scientific confirmation, etc

naturally, having been blessed with a healthy cynicism i find any vow of perpetual virginity made by anybody who has borne a child to be suspect and inconsistent with reality … the biblical data being ambiguous and open to multiple interpretations as you have already demonstrated

That’s because your thought is confused and incomplete. You are what I call a hyper-rationalist: one who places reason higher in the scheme of things than it should be. We don’t disdain reason at all. We simply acknowledge faith and other things alongside it.

Lots of stuff in science can’t be absolutely proven, either (in fact, almost everything), so they must be taken as axiomatic. Not all that different from Christian faith . . .

sorry, dave … on the subject of virgin births … it the person who accepts the claim on faith based on hearsay that is 2000 years old, without eyewitness testimony or medical/scientific confirmation, that is the confused one

it’s not that it can’t be absolutely proven … it can’t be proven at all, to any degree

it can only be accepted as a measure of faith which you, obviously, place higher than reason in the scheme of things

Right. Not gonna go round and round on this. You clearly can’t grasp our point of view at this point and thus, can only classify it as anti-reason or faith above reason.

right … you see that was your opportunity to actually present a measure of proof that would sustain your “reason over faith” point of view in support of this supposed miraculous event actually happening

i comprehend your perspective just fine … i just don’t accept it solely on the basis of your faith in 2000 year old hearsay

if you had something else, anything else, you would have presented it rather than trying to diminish my point of view (in back to back replies, no less) as unreasoned

I have collected many articles about miracles.

That is a bunch of reasoned articles about miracles [by scholars]: explaining why we Christians believe them, and why Hume didn’t actually disprove them. Go knock yourself out.

I’m not required to go through some entire huge argument (this time about miracles) anytime I make any statement about my faith: with someone who almost certainly will reject whatever I say anyway. One doesn’t always have the time to do that. I don’t have to invent the wheel every day I do my work.

This is precisely why I put the collection together. My concern is to spread what I believe to be truth. I don’t always have to do it myself, in all particulars. I’m happy to direct folks to other people, who have done a better job at many things than I could ever do.

You insulted my view by misrepresenting my position as some sort of blind faith, impervious to reason. So I came back and simply observed: “You clearly can’t grasp our point of view at this point and thus, can only classify it as anti-reason or faith above reason.”

This offended you, and so you come back and insult me and claim I have hubris.

Whatever. If you truly are interested in Christian reasoning, then I have given you what you seek, in scores of articles, of an historical nature.

the notion that others must accept your pre-suppositions at face value and are somehow lacking if they don’t seems to me to be hubris

*awaits ban for responding in kind*

1. You didn’t respond “in kind.” You sent an insult. I didn’t insult you. I merely noted (in so many words) that you are limited by your presuppositions. This is true of all of us. As soon as we accept one premise, we rule out many others.

2. I do ban for insults, but they have to be a lot more serious and ongoing than this. So, not to worry . . .


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