Also, "God chose her" doesn't even make sense... Unbaptised children go to limbo. [Or was it hell... I think it was. Curse you, Dante's Inferno.]
~Note: I do not agree with the "unbaptised children" statement. I'm just pointing out a flaw.~
One day children were brought to Jesus in the hope that he would lay hands on them and pray over them. The disciples shooed them off. But Jesus intervened: “Let the children alone, don’t prevent them from coming to me. God’s kingdom is made up of people like these.” After laying hands on them, he left.
The whole "why does God allow these things" question is a big question, and a big part of the faith, that many have already pointed out, comes from this understanding that God has a plan for whatever that might be, and that is hard to understand for cancer and such as people have pointed out, and the whole "pray and you shall be healed" argument doesn't always mean physical healing in the sense that you ailments will be removed and you will be 100% "Normal" again - something I've struggled with personally over the last 8 years of my life since being diagnosed with Myasthenia Gravis - which basically means long term medications and all the side effects that those medications will eventually lead to (one being the joys of weight gain from steroids and having to accept the jeers for something that I would love to change, but alas, it's not easy when you're on the things). It can mean spiritual healing and peace at heart as well. I know this sounds airy fairy to non religious people, but my peace comes from the fact that I'm a lucky one and whilst I still have to take the drugs and such, they have allowed me to continue my life and keep me alive to go on doing what I do.
With the whole "what about all these disasters and murder and ... ..." - well, there is a massive part in the fact that God has given us free will, the ability to choose our actions and not be dictated to by him, that's why there are murderers and rapists and other nasty people out there, it's not that God likes it, far from it, it's that he chooses to do nothing about it because he doesn't want to control us but let us live our lives for ourselves and, His wish, is that we devote this life back to him in praise and worship in all things we do. It's a hard thing to get your head around, I accept, and I still talk over it to see if there is a better "argument or reason" for it and such, but this free will could also be applied to such things as this.
Now, don't get me wrong, I'm horrified at the amount of lives that are lost to natural and man made disasters, I wish that it wasn't the case, but these people are living in place called "Tornado Alley" it's a place where such storms are regularly known to exist, yet they still live there, they still build their homes there. Now, I know that these things cannot always be predicted, but surely there are better measures they can take as humans to build better structures, build more adequate bunkers and shelters etc, so that even if the main structures come down, that the bunkers they're in are better fit for purpose which would save many more lives. I mean take the earth quake proof buildings - ok, they probably wouldn't withstand everything the power of the earth could throw at them, but they have been developed and made better so that in the places where earth quakes are regular, they give the people living there a fighting chance.
I realise that this argument would then stop people living by the sea and such in case of a Tsunami and what not, that's not what I'm getting at, it's just the fact that we have the abilities as humans, we have the knowledge, given by God or just devised by human ingenuity, that's a whole other argument, but the point is we have it, so why don't they use it, why don't they look at their surroundings and think "hmmm, we could do this better" but it's not until such a storm occurs that they then think to do something about it.
So, is it God causing all these issues and deaths, or is it the humans that decided to settle and build where there are some of the worlds strongest storms on a regular basis? Who knows, but ultimately, keep asking the questions, talk to people about it of differing views and make your own mind up. I'm glad of the people of and not of faith who look into things, ask questions, seek answers and work things out for themselves, it's those who go in blindly either to faith or to mock faith and use the same old hat answers from either side that do my tree.
I don't know if any of that helps, I tend to ramble a bit on things like this as it is a constant discussion, which is a whole part of faith that does seem to have been lost, the discussion and learning from it - there are too many "these are all the answers you need" stems of "church" these days .. [/Rant]
Willott (22nd May 2013)
That professor/student exchange is really awful. That student deserves a slap and the professor would have easily been able to counter it.
Perfectly serious in response to X-13 - he suggested that children go to limbo or hell, I was quoting from the Message version of the bible... probably should have done more than a 3 word explanation...
The idea is that children are seen as innocent, they don't understand their decisions or repercusions - they lack the knowledge to willingly do wrong. The idea behind the bible verse being that these innocent children will be in God's Kingdom, and it's also a model for Christians to work towards - not lacking the knowledge to willingly do wrong, but to willingly decide, with the knowledge we have, not to do wrong.
As for religion, I'm not a believer myself but I do respect those who find a comfort in it (my mum being one of them).
bodminman (22nd May 2013)
Does it not logically follow, then, that God wishes us not to have knowledge, and in fact, our free will comes not from God, but from the original sin itself? And does it not follow from that, then, that if we are to agree that free will and independence are positive things, that the creature described as the embodiment of all evil is in fact, not so, and instead is the one responsible from releasing us from the shackles of slavery to God?
(Heck, maybe we'd be happier being mindless slaves, but that's a different discussion. I'm sure most Christians would agree Free Will is a good thing)
That's what I understand the Bible to say, anyway. I'm not trying to cause arguments, that's just my interpretation of it. Maybe God and the Devil do exist, and the Bible's one big smear campaign :P
At this point I'd recommend Irrelegion by John Allen Paulos. Every single argument thus far has been discussed in detail by this book.
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