Evolution vs. creation



Hey, if there is a God and you don't believe in him then you will go to hell. So if I was you I would just give it up. If there isn't a God then your OK, but why even take the chance? If there is a god and you believe in him, and worship him you will go to heaven. Now tell me would you rather burn FOREVER or would want tolive happily forever.

This is the ever-wonderful Pascal's wager.

The problem is, if you are just "covering your ass" rather than truly believing in God (whatever that entails), you would think an omniscient God would catch your trickery and send you off to hell.

Read: <A HREF="http://www.utm.edu/research/iep/text/james/will/will.htm">The Will to Believe (William James)</A>
I believe, that it is a good idea to consider the "wager", but I agree 100% you can't just be a Christian only because you're scared of hell. It's gotta be because you want to change. God isn't exactly an idiot. He sees your heart and knows what's in it.
These are good things to ponder because at least (maybe) it will give people a chance to look into their own hearts.

what do you really think about the "wager" ?

isn't it important to consider the fundamental truth, rather than 'sourcing' (ones)
expectations from what we tend to call reason? should we not be open minded;
the Spirit (as well as the brain) is not in a simple universe, perhaps our reasoning
is in fact our very source of limitation, even when considering aspects of Faith.
I feel the admin here gets to the core here. You can't just cover your ass in trying to evade hell. You have to have a sincere belief in him, though you might not understand him.
When pondering upon that question, people who believe in God, but declare them as "religion independent" as i do, will they go to heaven or hell?
I believe in God, but Christianity and all of its denominations are false *this is my belief, and so you dont have to flame me for that* and i have to say that i really dont believe in any big religions on this planet either. God is Nature, nature is God, accept that as he created us, man within nature itself...

Just waiting for my peabrain to boot into English :p
Ok, DaveW, you have a point. But how does
one come to believe? Also, how does one
keep their intentions in seeking god right?
Why seek god to begin with? How will a
person know when they have found him?
If someone is seeking him out of desperation..then is that wrong?
Forgive your parents. That's where I started, and it gave me a super-charged kick in the butt towards religion. The notion of absolute vs relativity regarding right and wrong and good and evil is enlightening too, and can be seen all around, every day, and in every instance. It is the "line" between each little decision we make every day. You can see God and the truth wherever you look, you just have to know what you're looking for. In any given topic you can see the consequences of right and wrong decisions. There are those who think that it is relative; that WE decided what is right and wrong, and if you really think about it, I think it's pretty obvious that we did not decide. That's why I think that humility is the key to understanding.

God loves you and so do I!
Well Flash,

It would seem to me that anyone who believes in a judgemental god (as opposed to an indifferent & thus irrelevant god - I may be in this category) must always be aware that they must prove something to their god. They know that when their time is up, they will be evaluated based on some criteria that will determine their future eternal life. Since every believer in a judgemental god accepts this, there is a tremendous motivating factor right there. I do not think that you can isolate true belief from that which is (probably unconsciously) motivated through fear.

In other words, only those who are unconstrained by the fear of a judgemental god may be truly (ie. with justification) believers in him.

This again can be disputed. The solution lies in the will to believe. ie. Are beliefs that are motivated out of practical necessity justified?

[This message has been edited by DaveW (edited June 22, 1999).]
you cannot prove yourself through deed. God doesn't look at deeds. Atleast not the deed itself. The ways of the wicked are deceitful. Anyone can say one thing and think another. How hard is it to beleive one thing but be deceptive in your actions?

God knows your heart. It doesn't matter if you were a derranged serial killer. That's the whole point of God forgiveness. Why waste forgiveness on those who don't need it? "all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God" we all need God's forgiveness, including the serial killer. If he sees his evil deeds, and his heart is truly repentent, God will see that, and judge him according to his heart, not his deeds. No one can prove to God why we should get into heaven. It is by God's grace alone that we are saved. it is the hardest thing in the world to reach out and except that gift, because so few people on earth would give you an extremely valuable item, without expecting something in material or deed from you. God only asks that you love him and share his love with others. If you do that you'll do what's right anyway.

poser boy:
i'm not sure what you mean by that comment. Like I told Dave. It is your heart God sees. Check out my post on the topic "is God benevolent." That should clear up any doubts you have on my feelings toward God.

I can't tell you if you'll go to hell or not. I don't know you. Even then I probably couldn't tell you. I'm not the type to run around declaring whose dammned and whose not. Pray about it.

How do you start believing? There's no official ceromony. Just decide to live your life with a new purpose. Try to put yourself in the positions of others, that always helped me know what i should do.
PS> Flash:

Seeking God out of desperation, isn't wrong. Sometimes it takes a lot for people to realize thay can't do it on their own. Just make sure you don't use him as a wishing well, to come to ONLY when you're in trouble, he deserves better than that. But I think we can all be held accountable for that at some point in our lives. Why seek out God? I think there's a point in our lives when we realize this life is so short. We can't spend our whole lives trying to deal with the world's trials on our own. There are bigger fish to fry.
you cannot prove yourself through deed. God doesn't look at deeds. Atleast not the deed itself. The ways of the wicked are deceitful. Anyone can say one thing and think another. How hard is it to beleive one thing but be deceptive in your actions?

I should first note that I am speaking of a generalized 'god' & not the Christian god, so any mention of god's ability to forgive etc. is not terribly relevant.

I am trying to say that it is possible for one to be deceitful in one's beliefs, if not intentionally. It is especially easy to be deceitful when a specific framework of "acceptable" beliefs is quite properly laid out, as it is in organized religion. The simple adoption of this framework (eg. the serial killer who repents) does NOT constitute a justified belief (ie. a genuine belief), especially when failure to adopt this specific framework will result in eternal hell.

An all-knowing god must be able to differentiate an individual who 'naturally' believes (and who does so without fear of reprisal) and one who falsely believes (ie. does so under fear of reprisal from a god who judges everyone).

It thus follows that anyone who believes in a God who judges MUST at some point understand the consequences of failing to believe. This instant makes him a false believer, as his beliefs are thereafter molded by his insight, rather than his true instinctive feelings.

btw...what does any of this have to do with "Evolution vs. creation" ? :)

[This message has been edited by DaveW (edited June 22, 1999).]

You misunderstand. Certainly if you were ONLY covering your butt, you would have an insincere beleif. But, when there is a desire to better oneself, to benefit others, to be willing to put someone else's will before your own, that's true belief. And though when you know the consequences, you are no longer innocent, the will to change your heart, and the attempt to men your ways is what makes you a belever. The serial killer, who though more then likely is scared of the law and hell, is able to repent, and be forgiven. God is all-knowing, he WILL see the innocent from the guilty. Only he can judge that, but in your view we are all going to hell.

Are you the person who thinks God is this mighty being who will reap judgement and wrath at your every slip-up, and that everything that happens to us is a reward or punishment of our own actions?

God is benevolent. Check out the topic: "Is God Benevolent."

Just wanted to give you a high five, and say that you seem to be pretty frickin' enlightened already. So keep up the good work!

I also wondered if I could interject a notion that was presented to me at some point while reading the Bible, or at church, I really can't remember, but anyway...

There is a story or a message in the Bible somewhere that says (paraphrased of course) that even if you do commit a sin against God, if it is done out of love and caring for another, and out of good will, then God will see your intentions in your heart, and reward you for this. Does that make any sense? Like, Robin Hood kind of, you know? But the message, I think, IS that it is not just your works that are judged, but the intentions behind your works. It's like some "church people" who go every Sunday, and hoot and hollar, and say, "Look at me, look at me! Aren't I great?! Look, I'm praying! Look, I'm speaking in tounges! Isn't everyone really impressed with me?" That's not the point. Are you doing it for your own ego's sake, or because you love God, and wish to worship him? Because, as it points out in the Bible, you can worship him in a closet with the door closed, and no one will ever know, except the One who counts.

God loves you and so do I!

I want to return the copmliment, seems like you were kicking butt before long before I found this site.

Couldn't have put it better myself!
Though actions speak louder than words, God sees the intentions behind them!
Hokay. Think. Why is it that there are many different religions, but yet all societies relate to there own through the same values as all others. Consider that it may be that there are many different names for the same religion, and regardless of what ones religion is named, all serve the same God. HINT-God and Way (in this case) are one and the same) The term "God" is merely an ancient term for "Way".
the will to change your heart, and the attempt to men your ways is what makes you a belever.

This will is what I dispute. I do not see the belief as justified.

A man who is tortured may claim to believe almost anything to stop the punishment- in fact he often will, subjectively, truly believe what he is being told to believe. The same may be of the serial killer who repents under the pressure of guilt & loneliness. I think you will agree that (at least in the first case), the beliefs are not justified and are thus false beliefs. What holds in the extreme case must also hold for lesser forms of persuasion (ie. a judgemental god).

The serial killer, who though more then likely is scared of the law and hell, is able to repent, and be forgiven.

You claim forgiveness to be a quality of your god. This is not terribly relevant to the subject. You have no evidence that he is as such. In the interest of fairness and equality, you should avoid spitting on the 90+% of humans who do not share your view of god.
Hey everybody, I just had a delightful, wicked little idea!

What if the God you are supposed to love and fear is actually Satan? You know, he wants to be loved or something... Vanity or some such sin. So he makes up the bible, and plays the big 'old man in the sky' game, and sends his messenger to impersonate God?

And the *real* God is annoyed beyond belief by the constant praying and praising? Maybe he's just too modest, or doesn't have time for all that bs. So, Christianity is then the religion of the Devil, and all *believers* are going to hell!!!


I guess what it comes down to is this. You must all admit there's absolutely no ground for your belief, and it could be 100% opposite from the truth!!

I am; therefore I think.
Boris, you,re close, but not close enough. You're half right.