Could Jesus Find Fulfillment In Dying Today?

OK, so everyone knows there's not a sliver of proof that God exists, but I still respect religious people whose beliefs are sincerely held. I mean, they're under no obligation to subject those beliefs to any logical test, and whatever helps get through life is fine by me.

So I came across a discussion yesterday titled: Why do people not believe in God?

Which eventually prompted me to ask how some of those people managed to dress themselves.

True, I don't believe in God, but I'm not an atheist. In fact, I detest those atheists who smugly think they know something - i.e. that there's nothing.  Even worse are those who get hostile about it. Isn't it sobering enough to realize that even if you're right, you don't get to gloat? And that if you're wrong… well, is there gloating in heaven? Either way, you may never know. That's why Pascal thought everyone should believe – because it's better to be safe than sorry.

All well and good except that if you do that, how can you live with yourself today - much less for eternity?.

But in fact, I called myself an atheist years ago when I wanted to get the door-knockers all charged up. I stopped when I tired of being a hypocrite - about the same time, I stopped answering the doorbell.

Anyway, I eventually ended up starting a thread asking if God might, in fact, be Satan?

Seems simple enough to me: would YOU create a mess like this? And then not only allow the suffering, but initiate it? Not to mention, would you be petty enough to screw Adam because Eve was a dumb bitch?

And what's up with Jesus? If he came today and told people he was planning to die for our sins, what kind of reception would he get? Or would he simply be committed? And another thing, why did he choose to come when he did? He couldn't wait a few thousand years for YouTube? Or did he purposely want to avoid videotape and 24hr. cable news? "Jesus turns bread into seafood, film at eleven!" Big deal, I think Morningstar Farms can do that too now.

Besides, there's no way Jesus could die on the cross today. Amnesty International would be all over it if for no other reason than they'd want to nip Christianity in the bud. At best he'd get a lethal injection, but what if he only got life in prison?

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About tedwest

A longtime veteran of comedy and political forums, I decided that I needed a more restful venue because... well... I finally hate everybody. Except my wife that is... and my ex-wife.. and... no, that's about it. I lead about as simple a life as one can, preferring activities that include anything that doesn't involve going out and seeing YOU! And I particularly enjoy what I call "Get the Bitch" movies on Lifetime. You know the ones where the intended victim finally does something so incredibly stupid that she forfeits her right to live, and from that moment on you're rooting for the stalker. Of course, it rarely works out the way you want, but when it does, the feeling you get is... well, there's nothing else like it, other than, maybe, eating chocolate chip cookies. Oh, and I'm proudly anti-wildlife, both foreign and domestic, and anti-environment - especially foreign environments. I think Howard Stern put it best when he said, "If fifty percent of the population died tomorrow, I can live with that." And I feel the same about the other fifty percent, so together, we've pretty much got it all covered.
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36 Responses to Could Jesus Find Fulfillment In Dying Today?

  1. Adam says:

    I think you've been living under a rock for the past 20 years if you think 'everyone knows there's not a sliver of proof for the existence of God'. I know numerous science professors as well as philosophy profs. that would very quick to put that 'fact' to rest.

  2. Scio, Scio says:

    God doesn't cause evil/suffering. That is a result of man's own
    free action in rejecting God. All sin is rejection of God, and
    all consequences of sin (evil, suffering) are consequences of the same
    rejection.
    God does allow suffering. The linked article helps to explain some rationale for it.

  3. Adam says:

    Your comment about allowing evil really only shows that your idea of who you think God should be doesn't exist – and that's ok.Although, your right that there's a reason for things like when Christ came. Your not surprising any religious people by saying that God does everything exactly when he means to.

  4. SpiritSeeker says:

    Perhaps Scio you could explain what your conception of God is? Then we could discuss the ideas of evil and suffering better. What emotions / motivations does he have, what powers, where does he exist, how does he interact with our world, and why did he create the universe?

  5. Scio, Scio says:

    Catholic. Loving Father. Western Rational as opposed to
    Islamic conception of pure will. Triune. Deus Caritas
    Est.
    As far as knowing God's motivation on anything, it's not my
    place. All I know is that for some reason He gives us every
    opportunity to remain in His good graces.

    God is beyond our ability to rationally understand.

  6. I'm curious about the idea of Jesus coming in this day an age. That's actually a really interesting thought…if Jesus came today, what would he be like? What would he say, how would he act, what would he do, and how would he die?I sympathize with your feeling that God could be Satan. I don't believe it myself, but I can see how you could come to that conclusion, or pose that possibility. I myself am not sure of the existence of either as traditionally held. Although, I do believe in God, just not in the normal way, I suppose.I'm interested most in ideas about pain and suffering. Those topics are ones that many people want to sweep under the rug, which is precisely why they shouldn't be.

  7. TedWest says:

    I would prefer to comment on the replies here in a separate entry rather than get involved in the discussion because I always seem to get in trouble with someone.
    The main difficulty I have is in keeping it light when the underlying subject is so contentious. I've already written another entry, but now I'm working to excise anything that might appear to be intelligent and contemplative, you know, in order to keep my observations on the same level as religion itself, and I mean that in the nicest sense.

  8. No worries, although, I hope you don't shy away too much from whatever might appear intelligent and contemplative. I actually wouldn't mind hearing your honest point of view. I tend to have more in common with agnostics/atheists than I do other Christians anyways. 😉

  9. TedWest says:

    I'm never shy, and I have no friends, primarily, I think because I'm an agnostic conservative who's at war with pragmatic, wimpy, pseudo-conservatives.
    And my true beliefs will be apparent, though I try to keep it light because I think it's wrong to confront sincere people about religion, since even if they're wrong, they have something that gives them comfort, and I don't.
    In fact, I've long wrestled with the problem of even joking about religious matters because I felt that even jokes have the potential to be hurtful possibly harmful.
    The recent "discussions" on Topix were an eye-opener as they revealed that it's unlikely anything I say would influence believers negatively, and in fact, I even learned something important about myself from someone else – that I'm the Devil.
    More on that later…

  10. I am of the opinion that when it comes to spirituality, comfort is the opposite of what we should seek. ;)Jokes do seem to be more harmful than sincere discussion though, in my view. As long as you are compassionate and sincere about what you believe, it's not wrong to question others or to challenge them. As long as one person doesn't see themselves as better than the other, true discussion can be had. Of course, that has to go both ways…

  11. TedWest says:

    Look what you're doin', you're ruining my comfort.
    Comfort is the last thing you and I seek, but it serves no ultimate purpose. Religious people lead relatively worry-free lives and when it ends, they win either way.
    From where I stand, the best thing that could happen is that there is no God. Otherwise, God knows what we're in for. All I ask is three rounds in a fair fight. You think I'll get that?

  12. Well, not all religious people are movtivated by comfort. I consider myself religious, even though it's not exactly traditional. Ignorance is only superficial bliss. The spiritual life should be a commitment to following the truth wherever it may lead, even if that means giving up every form of spiritual security. In fact, it is the nothingness and the emptiness that we find there that actually give us a glimpse of the divine. I don't know what happens after death, and honestly it doesn't matter. What matters is spiritual transformation here and now, and religion should be (and is, underneath all the confusion) a guide for this.I would rather lead a life in truth and uncertainty, than comfort and hiding. So no, I don't think "they" win either way. 🙂

  13. TedWest says:

    I vowed after the first response that I was going to stay out of this, but you won't let me, so let that be on your conscience.
    Now this…

    "Ignorance is only superficial bliss."
    Only when knowing the truth is beneficial.
    "The spiritual life should be a commitment to following the truth wherever it may lead,"
    Should? That's a value judgment. One I share unfortunately. But philosophical truths are only important if there is a God and he wants you to pursue them. An all-powerful God who doesn't want the truth to be known is a formidable adversary.
    "even if that means giving up every form of spiritual security."
    Therein lies the problem, I think. You and I may feel that way, and we may ultimately be rewarded for it, but it's risky. Unfortunately, and I don't know about you, but I don't have a choice.. Reason tells me that either God doesn't exist or he's beyond description – and not in a good way.
    Of course, my "life as Heel Week" theory addresses that, and with a favorable outcome.
    " In fact, it is the nothingness and the emptiness that we find there that actually give us a glimpse of the divine."
    Oh he's gonna be pissed at you.
    "I don't know what happens after death, and honestly it doesn't matter."
    Clearly you haven't thought this through to it's conclusion.
    "What matters is spiritual transformation here and now,"
    Any transformation will do? That's hopeful
    "and religion should be (and is, underneath all the confusion) a guide for this."
    I think I get your point – it's the principles not the myths?
    If that's the case, I'm good, and my neighbor's in trouble. I shouldn't even have had to ask him to prune his damn tree.I would rather lead a life in truth and uncertainty, than comfort and hiding. So no, I don't think "they" win either way"

  14. Adam says:

    I would rather lead a life in truth and uncertainty, than comfort and hiding. So no, I don't think "they" win either way"I apologize if I'm misinterpreting your use of 'truth' but there is really no distinction between 'rational' people and 'faith-based' people. There is no truth… and then faith… all people, agnostic, atheist or religious all 'believe' that what they think is right. Heck, the foundation to most science and advanced mathematics is still based on assumptions and unproven theories.I apologize again, I don't understand what you mean by 'hiding' either, could you expand?

  15. Actually that was something that I said. :)I was not referring to people who are "rational" vs. "faith-based." I myself have faith in God. Rather, I was referring to the fact that we should shed all of our comforts and spiritual securities in order to align ourselves more closely with the truth (aka, in my opinion, God).I'm not saying all religious people do this (because, heck, that would include me), but many people (regardless of faith) do. They hold tightly to their beliefs no matter what, but not just as an act of fidelity and trust, but more as an act of fear of the unknown and the uncertain. Part of having true faith, in my opinion, is acknowledging that everything we know (or believe) could be dead wrong. That feeling of uncertainty is not something we should squish out in order to make our lives more comfortable and our minds more at ease. That's what I meant by hiding.

  16. TedWest says:

    I can only speak for Catholics, and their faith is rooted in fear which the Pope just reaffirmed yesterday.
    If a Catholic dares to doubt, he's hellbound as sure as Eve…
    Wait a minute, did that crazy bitch even go to hell?

  17. Actually, no, I don't think "that crazy bitch" went to Hell, because she repented her sins. At least, that's what the Quran says…Can't say anything for the Catholics…

  18. TedWest says:

    She made the Quran TOO? Man, you can't make it up!!!
    Thank you for that, it made my day. I'd love to meet you, you sound like one wacky Muslim.
    Warm regards,
    Ted

  19. Scio, Scio says:

    I can only speak for Catholics, and their faith is rooted in fear which the Pope just reaffirmed yesterday.
    If a Catholic dares to doubt, he's hellbound as sure as Eve…That's a matter of perspective, I think! Fear, or realistic acknowledgment that God is in charge and rejection of Him in life is His rejection of us afterwards?Wait a minute, did that crazy bitch even go to hell?Probably, but then this might have solved that problem. Can't ever know for certain.

  20. TedWest says:

    Scio, I used to say that I was the greatest authority on Catholicism after the Pope. I don't really think I was, but I'm always surprised at how people distort Catholic dogma to suit their needs. Many Catholics don't realize they're not Catholics – that they are automatically out when they take a position that differs from that of the Church, even if they aren't formally excommunicated.
    I agree that the fear thing is a matter of perspective. I imagine that a good many Catholics never think about the hideous threats at the heart of Catholicism because they are secure in their beliefs and have no reason to question them.
    On the other hand, there's that little caveat that people who have never been Catholic are in a better position to get into heaven than a Catholic who's fallen away. If you're ignorant you're in. If you use your reasoning and it leads you away from the Church, you're doomed.
    I say these things as one who once went to confession twice in about twenty hours because I had an "impure thought" on the school bus.

  21. …we were referring to Eve, right…? lol!come down to Malaysia and we'll go to a Starbucks.=)

  22. TedWest says:

    Come down to Malaysia? You really are one wacky Muslim. I plan to die with my head on. Besides, I've never even been in a Starbucks here.

  23. Malaysia does not have a beheading sentence, much to Wahabism's dismay. Besides, we're quite liberal. Just don't bring any drugs in, unless they're prescribed.Penalty for that is death….

  24. TedWest says:

    Oh then forget it.

  25. but then, why bring it in, when you can buy it locally for a fraction of the price….=)

  26. TedWest says:

    See, this is how misunderstandings occur. Now that you've explained it thoroughly, It makes perfect sense.
    Now maybe you could do the same for the Muslim-Israeli relationship?
    And would I be coming to Malaysia just for coffee or are there other things to do, besides driving around in a lightly tinted vehicle, that is?

  27. Scio, Scio says:

    Been there with the scrupulosity. Impure thoughts are a killer,
    but eventually one realizes that we're not responsible for every single
    thought that pops into our heads, or every small human frailty.
    We're not even always responsible for entertaining those dirty little
    thoughts. Damn hormones. Venial sin is pretty common but
    not a deal-breaker with Our Lord. I like to say that I've got
    about 2 billion years in purgatory stored up…Divine Mercy Sunday is
    like a party bonus.
    The thing about Catholicism is that God is Just, which means He will
    let you send yourself to Hell, but He is also merciful and gives us
    every opportunity to redeem ourselves.
    Far be it from me to give you any sort of lesson. You're spot on about the latae sententiae
    excommunication. Fully 80% of American Catholics are only being
    saved by their own invincible ignorance. Merciful God, and what
    all.
    I don't know about the hideous threats part of the Faith…I look at it
    as more of a stark reality. Ya gotta do what ya gotta do.

  28. TedWest says:

    First of all, remembering to click on the "reply" link is a real nuisance.
    Second of all, you've put me at the limit of what my conscience will allow me to say.
    Third of all, I call them CINOs.
    Finally, take heart, 2 billion years in Purgatory is faster than the blink of an eye in eternity years.
    Which begs the question, how do they tell time in Heaven? "I'll meet you at Starbucks on Holywood and Vine at… uh…um… oh just go there, even if I'm a billion years late, it'll really be just a moment… and don't tint your windows too dark so I'll know it's you."

  29. Scio, Scio says:

    catholic in name only…sweet. You ever hang out on Phatmass.com?

    Don't want to push you re: the conscience.

    I'm counting on eternity kind of balancing out the purgatory
    thing. Haha, in Heaven Starbucks won't support Planned Parenthood
    and fill me with guilt everytime I enjoy a tall mocha frap with cream…

  30. The Muslim-Israeli relationship is easy. Someone gave the Jews land in Israel, which belonged to Turkey. The Arabs and Jews and Christians there lived in peace, until the pissed off Arab neighbors surrounding Israel decided to try and take it back. That didn't work. The Jews, being overly cautious, decide to separate the Arab population from the rest of the Israelites. And there was peace one more, with the Arab countries resenting their defeat. Then, when the Jews were celebrating a festival, the sneaky Arab bastards who defied their own Prophet's advice to respect other religions decide to attack Israel again, and they lost again, this time losing their lands bordering Israel. And until now, they bitch and moan about how they lost, and how Israel is oppressing the population which sympathized with them.And since the Arabs don't want to annoy the UN directly, they decide to fund Hamas' military wing, which is like the Republican Party having a private army, to send young, simple minded, never read the Quran idiots with bombs strapped to their torsos to kill Jews indirectly, while promising these simpletons martyrdom and virgins.See, not that hard to explain.

  31. TedWest says:

    The wife says, "Salamat."
    And I'm humming a song by the Partridge family…

  32. TedWest says:

    See, you're the very reason why I can't talk about my feelings regarding religion. It's very troubling to me even now to think that I might possibly hurt a decent person in unknown ways.
    But I don't want you to think that I've some kind of agnostic saint, either. There was a preacher who used to frequent my forum, and he knew how this guy Adam and I were not particularly receptive to the idea of God.
    We became quite friendly however, and one day he said something to the effect of, "Adam may be a lost cause, but I'll convert you yet."
    Conscience in this case required that I set him straight – that he stood a far better chance of converting Adam because he bore God no hostility.
    A short while later, I posted an email I'd just sent to a columnist, (prompted by his column) in which I detailed my several theories of God and the universe after which, the preacher called me a dirtbag and left.
    Yet I think my Tabitha Theory of Creation is quite plausible.

  33. Scio, Scio says:

    Not sure how you could hurt anyone by explaining your views, unless
    that person had never heard God mocked before. But, your
    preference. I am content to discuss political topics with you.

    And I'm not trying to convert you, that's a touch too…evangelical for
    my sensibilities. I'm just unabashedly Catholic and approach
    everything from that viewpoint. I try to be enthusiastic about
    the Faith, and at best I try to be a good example to others. I
    fail a lot.

  34. TedWest says:

    No, you said it all right there, and you said it well.
    The problem is all mine. I can't just shut up, but my beef is not with people like yourself, yet there's always the possibility it will become so.
    A bit of personal irony is that I seem to get into more conflict than if I flat-out didn't care about how anyone reacted.
    Perhaps it's best if it ever reaches the point where I start to drive you nuts, just know that you probably drive me just as nuts.
    And in a rare instance, I really do mean that in the nicest sense.

  35. Scio, Scio says:

    well, we'll try to prevent beef. I enjoy your posts too much.

  36. TedWest says:

    All this has reminded me (I don't know why) of my senior year in high school when one afternoon, there was a great buzz in the hall – "Brother Pilder says there's no Hell!"
    For several reasons only you may understand, how could that be? How could he say that?
    Well, I had his class later that day, and he did say it. I graduated shortly thereafter, so i don't know if he was ever summoned to the Vatican.

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