My Friend's Challenge (Need Help)

User avatar
steve
Posts: 3362
Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 9:45 pm

Re: My Friend's Challenge (Need Help)

Post by steve » Sun Feb 06, 2011 8:11 pm

kaufmannphillips wrote:
One does not have to be cynical to weigh the value of an argument. A non-falsifiable argument has limited worth: an argument that cannot be demonstrated to be false, also cannot be demonstrated to be true.
You are apparently mistaking my assertion for an argument. You and I certainly know the difference. That God is sovereign, and entitled to condition His promises however He chooses, and is to be trusted by His creatures regardless how He chooses in the matter, is not intended to be an argument (I mentioned it was non-falsifiable, meaning it cannot qualify as an argument). It is intended as an affirmation arising from a certain specie of faith in God. No one would pretend that it is a matter that can be demonstrated (just as it cannot be demonstrated that one is under obligation to honor his parents or to remain faithful to his wife). That not all have faith is a given, and so I am simply presenting the answer that such would suggest, without the assumption that any will accept it, unless they share like faith.

As for the my observation that, though God is said to feed the birds, there also comes a point when each bird must die (bringing an end to this providential care)—I think this to be self-evident. If another wishes to present the contrary case, I would be very interested in reading how this is done.

I would also be fascinated to read the case for the idea that God's promises of temporal care are not intended to have a cut-off point (i.e., at the appropriate time of death of an individual).

I have made affirmations above that arise from the kind of faith in God that I choose to live by (and have done so for 40 years, without disillusionment). If I am not mistaken, it was also the faith by which the prophets and the apostles lived—and apparently Jesus as well, since He was not sure whether the general promises of protection (e.g., Psalm 34:7; 91:11-12) would accord with the will of His Father or not, in Gethsemane (Luke 22:42).

If others do not find these (seemingly obvious) affirmations to be self-evident, I will leave them to reach their own conclusions to the contrary. I fear, however, that, by adopting false expectations, they will be setting themselves up for unnecessary disappointment, and find that they are living in a naive world of theological fantasy—and may (like too may before them) wrongfully blame God for their disillusionment.

User avatar
Candlepower
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2008 3:26 pm
Location: Missouri

Re: My Friend's Challenge (Need Help)

Post by Candlepower » Mon Feb 07, 2011 9:42 am

Kaufmannphillips wrote:
one had better inquire into divine character – both the character of the "God" behind the fatwa, and the character of the G-d who exists in a world where such things transpire.
Forgive me in advance if I have misunderstood you, but when you said, “one had better inquire into divine character…of…G-d…” surely you didn’t mean we are obliged to question God’s character. An atheist dismisses God as irrelevant, but you seem to be saying that men are akin to God’s judges — that He stands below us answering our cross-examination of His character. If that is what you meant, then by what standard are we to question God's character? And what man is qualified to question His character?

Here’s an example of someone who presumed to inquire into the character of God:
“Then his (Job’s) wife said to him, ‘Do you still hold fast to your integrity? Curse God and die!’” (Job 2:9)

Here’s an example of someone who did not presume to inquire into the character of God:
“Though He slay me (Job), yet will I trust Him...” (Job 13:15)

Here was God’s response to one who presumes to inquire into His Character:
"Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind, and said: “Who is this who darkens counsel by words without knowledge?” (Job 38:1, 2)

Candlepower

User avatar
Perry
Posts: 328
Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2011 1:24 pm

Re: My Friend's Challenge (Need Help)

Post by Perry » Mon Feb 07, 2011 3:44 pm

Candlepower wrote:surely you didn’t mean we are obliged to question God’s character.
I don't think it's unfair for a thinking person to inquire into the character of God... particularly during their pre-conversion and early post conversion days, or (perhaps to a much less degree) even during times of severe trial.

Read the psalms, and you’ll get an earful of the psalmist questioning God’s character.

At some point, we must reconcile in our hearts and minds the apparent dichotomy between the observable evils of the world, and God's virtues of mercy/kindness/justice/grace etc. so oft extolled in the scriptures. Indeed, to my thinking, that’s one reason the scriptures to go such lengths to remind us.

It's the honest struggle of someone with this very conundrum that inspired this thread.

As christians we’re entering into a life and death contract that has eternal ramifications. We better full well have some idea of the character of Who it is we’re dealing with.

User avatar
steve
Posts: 3362
Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 9:45 pm

Re: My Friend's Challenge (Need Help)

Post by steve » Mon Feb 07, 2011 9:15 pm

Candlepower,

Since no one has yet responded to your post at the bottom of the previous page, which dealt with the issue of private property ownership, I thought I would weigh-in with you on that and say that this is the way I have seen the matter for many years, as well. You put it very clearly and, to my mind, accurately.

User avatar
Candlepower
Posts: 238
Joined: Wed Oct 29, 2008 3:26 pm
Location: Missouri

Re: My Friend's Challenge (Need Help)

Post by Candlepower » Tue Feb 08, 2011 1:16 pm

Steve,

Thank you for your kind comment. Coming from you, I consider it a high compliment.




Perry,

Thanks for your comment, but I think you may have missed my point a little bit.

First, I was seeking clarification from Kaufmannphillips about what he meant when he said, “…one had better inquire into divine character – both the character of the "God" behind the fatwa, and the character of the G-d who exists in a world where such things transpire.” Apparently you assume you know what Kaufmannphillips meant and are speaking on his behalf. That’s okay; it’s an open forum. But I am interested to hear what Kaufmannphillips has to say for himself. Who knows, he and I (and therefore you) may be in agreement. As I said when I opened my response to him, “Forgive me in advance if I have misunderstood you…” I meant that. I won't be surprised if I did misunderstand him. I sometimes say things that folks misunderstand because I could have chosen a better word, or could have constructed a clearer sentence.

Second, I was specifically interested in what Kaufmannphillips meant by “had better” and by “inquire.” If by “had better” he meant “obligated (as in “duty bound”), that would mean something different from, perhaps, “should.” If by “inquire into” he meant “question” (as in “doubt”), then that would mean something different from, say, “ask.”

Basically, the thought “one had better inquire into divine character of God” leaves me wondering what the writer meant. Perhaps you don’t know what either Kaufmannphillips or I meant. That makes for quite a muddle, doesn’t it? You assume you know what he meant, have corrected me for not knowing, and have implied that you are a “thinking Christian” and that I am not. I think thinking Christians can disagree, Perry. What do you think?

Candlepower

User avatar
Perry
Posts: 328
Joined: Thu Jan 13, 2011 1:24 pm

Re: My Friend's Challenge (Need Help)

Post by Perry » Tue Feb 08, 2011 3:13 pm

Candlepower wrote:Apparently you assume you know what Kaufmannphillips meant and are speaking on his behalf.
Wow, that's quite a leap. I began my comment with... "I don't think it's unfair..." I would have thought that was a pretty strong indicator of the person whose views I'm representing.

I see Kaufmannphillip's comment as reasonable and salient to the original post... (Notice I'm presenting MY view there)... I see the original question as reasonable... (again not speaking for anyone but myself)...

Thread drift is sort of inevitable in these venues... for example, while I see the exchange you and Paidon and Steve are having regarding individual property rights as interesting... I think they've drifted somewhat from the concerns of the original post. (i.e. God's promises answering prayer.)

In that sense I see that you guys are tossing around ideas in response to one another's comments... much like you would be doing were you sitting around a table face to face. To me that's fine and just part of the organic nature of the way conversations ebb and flow. You made a comment, and I attempted to express my own views re: your comment, since it seemed relavent to the original question. In that sense, I just though I was joining in on the conversation.
Candlepower wrote:It's an open forum.
... evidently more open for some than for others.

nancyer

Re: My Friend's Challenge (Need Help)

Post by nancyer » Mon Jun 30, 2014 7:33 pm

[quote="Paidion"]Yes, God feeds the birds as Jesus said. But how does he feed them? Clearly, He does not drop food in their mouths as they sit in their nests. The sparrow must search for seeds until she finds them. Otherwise she and her young ones will starve. It seems that God provides for sparrows by having created plants bearing the seeds which sparrows eat. Of course, He also created sparrows with the constitution to eat and digest seeds. [/quote]

Very well put, as usual, Paidion.

Post Reply

Return to “Christian Evidences & Challenges”