Summary: This is an ongoing debate with a person who believes in some cross-reaching philosophy than God. Messages asks some pretty serious questions.
You say that we find agreement and I don’t really see it (not that we have to agree). One of us believes in God and the other believes in rational empiricism—which states that there is no god. Now, I have chatted with some polite atheists that state “the only difference between Christians and atheists are just one god.” And though I understand they are trying to find agreement, I would go on record to say that the belief in One God is a major difference. I liken it to two cars driving the same direction down a two lane highway and the car in the left lane stating “we are just one lay away.” Well, that one lane is going 55 mph into a head on collision. One lane leads to life, the other death, so I think we are literally miles apart in our thinking.
As for your beliefs, empiricism believes that there is so such thing as innate knowledge and that knowledge is derived from experience. Rationalism states that there is the existence of innate knowledge. My philosophy is a bit rusty, but I believe the Locke/Berkeley/Hume school fought the Plato/Descartes/Chomsky school over this for years. No, I don’t believe the two can be rationalized together. Saying that someone is a rationalist empiricist would be the same thing as saying someone is a Christian Satanist—its just not possible in my opinion.
So here I am, a friend of yours who despite what people think of our hostile arguing, our friendship remains in tact (and always will). But am deeply, deeply concerned. Take it from my standpoint. I asked a person if they believed there was no afterlife, and they respond by stating they believe something that is impossible as they are literally defined.
You like science, me too. I find it marvelous. So the next question would be: how much scientific evidence needs to be discovered for a doubter to be turned into someone who would look objectively at the evidence?
I mean, what are the odds of Moses stating that hell is in the earth 4000 years ago and modern day scientists discover the center of the earth is black fire? What are the odds that Joshua explains he conquered Jericho after the wall fell out and current archeology uncovers the unfathomable—that the walls of the city fell out NOT IN! What are the odds that a so-called “fable” states that the earth was flooded, and scientific testing prove that to be true?
What about Tyre and Sidon? Their destructions were predicted and accurately destroyed in later centuries by Alexander the Great to a T! Egypt was prophesied to be under foreign occupation, and you know what, how many years did Egypt endure as a colony of a foreign nation? Thousands? Even Mohammed Ali—the most important ruler of Egypt in the last 1000 years—he was Albanian. These explanations are unbelievable.
What are the odds that in 700 BC someone would say the Messiah would be born in Bethlehem and that come true? What are the odds that someone would say the Messiah would die on two pieces of wood when no execution devise existed in that day? What are the odds that…and this has to shock anyone…anyone…that it was stated the Messiah would be betrayed for 30 pieces of silver and THAT END UP BEING TRUE? This is unbelievable!
I dunno. I speak simply but am a rather complex person. If you don’t believe that then facebook my wife and she will tell you. The flood, Tyre & Sidon, the city of Bethlehem…all of that is science. What about Sodom & Gomorrah being destroyed by brimstone (which is sulfur) and today the two sites sit atop two of the largest sulfur deposits in the world. And that’s science.
So Tiff, personally, I am really scared for you. When I was in HS I began to read thru explanations of science. I tested my faith. And I found out that science verifies everything there is to know about the Bible. And that put me in a deep fork in the road. Do I take the path of faith that leads to God of the Bible. Or do I take the path of faith (yes atheism absolutely requires faith, even rationalists agree to that) that leads to nothing?
Look, if you want some serious help at searching for truth, just let me know. I understand that some of what I said may be a lot to take in.