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Religion - A Choice, or a Forced Requisition?

Discussion in 'Debate Forum' started by Shinra Tensei, Aug 4, 2010.

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  1. Sam1198777

    Sam1198777 New Member

    a very absurd question Natie.

    Anyhow,i completely agree with abdul,he does know his religion properly..and i'm afraid i have to disagree upon one thing..Islam DOES NOT ALLOW FIGHTING without any reason,it only commands to fight those who fight or attack the muslims FIRST here's the verse "And fight in the way of Allah those who fight you" it should be clear now,as it does not allow pointless bloodshed...

    Although i am not saying that muslims are a happy-go-lucky nation,who dislike bloodshed...but the thing is,almost ALL OF THEM,even the liberal ones,are extremists,and they have a robotic mindset as to what they are doing is right..Allah hates extremism or atleast he doesnt like it..he says so in this verse "and transgress not thy limits,for Allah loves not transgressors" so,one should always be moderate and never cross his limits,something which muslims have forgotten...
  2. evolutionrex

    evolutionrex The Awesome Atheist

    He has a point though, i see no use in saying a bunch of verses from the bible and Koran. It won't prove anything

    i also agree you and Adbul on these points as well.

    -.- why do you say "Muslims" you should say "Islamic terrorist" becuase not all Muslims are terrorist or extremist. you said almost ALL OF THEM, but i hardly doubt that Abdul is an extremist or the people who live next to me, or some kids from my school. You should say "SOME OF THEM."

    yet another sign of stereotypes.
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2010
  3. natie

    natie Mr. F

    Really? You put that much work into trying to convince people on the internet that your opinion is correct? :O

    Sorry, I just find that incredible.
  4. evolutionrex

    evolutionrex The Awesome Atheist

    Isn't it? Isn't it incredible that people actually worship the bible? :p
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2010
  5. natie

    natie Mr. F

    I lol'd. Nice one.
  6. Ethan

    Ethan Banned

    Anything further that I see that resembles any sort of character assasination, such as the charge of being "dishonest", (Which I've seen tossed around quite a bit by both sides) will recieve an infraction.

    I don't care if you take a harsh tone in a debate, or work up a bit of an attitude whilst in the middle of your zeal, but the character assasination is getting on my nerves. Not to mention blaring arrogance (Although I can't infract for that sadly)
  7. Tim the turtle

    Tim the turtle Happy Mudkip

    I'm not any sort of expert on the Koran or anything, but it's fair to say that that quote does not deny any sort of killing other than that of self-defense. It saus "and", not "only". This means that it allows killing on the case of self-defense... and any other form of sanctioned killing that may or may not be in the text. And is inclusive, not exclusive.

    EDIT: Wooo, first day of second year of uni. Hats off to alcohol. In other words, I'll post a more reasoned and in depth argument in this topic when I'm not under-the-influence.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2010
  8. theswweet

    theswweet swweet is awesomme!

    i used to be christian, found any religion to be cult-ish, and became agnostic, and thats just barely, i'm more atheist.

    i don't think that religion is bad, but my experiences with christianity haven't been the best after i left. there is this one idiot at school that tries desperately to convert me, and i wouldn't be surprised to see him and the original troll (Neo) agreeing with each other on most things... he really is a *******, and if christianity was true, he is definitely condemned to hell... though knowing him, if heaven and hell aren't real... he'd go crazy! lol.

    but yeah, people like that, you just ignore, and if you are religious, then feel free to ray for their soul, cause i'm sure you would consider it in danger... but i digress

    kids have choice... but parents also have a choice to brainwash their kids into a religion, by saying everything else is unholy, and punishing them if they rebel... so eventually they just give up thinking for themselves... i find it degrading some religious extremists would do this.
  9. evolutionrex

    evolutionrex The Awesome Atheist


    finally someone gets back on topic!
  10. ShinySandshrew

    ShinySandshrew †God Follower†

    Stop. Even the King James says it was "translated out of the original tongues." Those were Hebrew for the OT and Greek for the NT. There was no intermediate language. For a more modern translation, you can look at the NETBible, where just about every note shows that it was translated from the original languages.

    Actually, according to the ahadith, the NT was available in Arabic when he was alive! And he did have contact with a Christian before when you mentioned.

    'The Prophet returned to Khadija while his heart was beating rapidly. She took him to Waraqa bin Naufal who was a Christian convert and used to read the Gospels in Arabic Waraqa asked (the Prophet), "What do you see?" When he told him, Waraqa said, "That is the same angel whom Allah sent to the Prophet) Moses. Should I live till you receive the Divine Message, I will support you strongly."' (Source. Reference is in the link.)

    Precisely where in the OT do you find this command? And if you are just going to make a statement about the Bible without giving a reference, that doesn't help the debate at all.

    I am going to make a stipulation here. When a claim is made about something that the Bible or Koran says (not does not say) a refference must be given. Else it doesn't help the debate progress. I will adhere to this as will TFP. I expect you do to the same!

    abdul, you have no right to call it propagana without proof. Source your claim.

    Wait up! You are setting up a dichotomy that doesn't exist: Either Christianity is peacful or God wouldn't send people to Hell. This is illogical because the persons in question are different. If God says, "I will punish the wicked." That is not Christianity being violent, because God, not the Christians are the ones doing the punishing. In the OT and the NT both, God reserves for Himself the final punishment of wrong. (Deutoronmy 32:35 and Romans 12:19)

    Jesus also taught his followers not to seek revenge. Matthew 5:38-45 is a good example. In it, Jesus says, "'You have heard that it was said, `AN EYE FOR AN EYE, AND A TOOTH FOR A TOOTH.' 'But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, let him have your coat also. Whoever forces you to go one mile, go with him two. Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you. 'You have heard that it was said, `YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR and hate your enemy.' 'But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven...'" Does this sound like Jesus wants His followers to be conquerers? There are quite a few other places that say similiar things: Leviticus 19:18, Proverbs 20:22, Proverbs 24:29, Galations 6:10, 1 Thesalonians 5:15 and 1 Peter 3:9.

    If God says, "Any non-Christian that does not convert to Christianty, you may kill" then that would be Christianity being violent. Also, let me point one last thing out. In the Bible there times mentioned that Jesus will judge the unrighteous. But that is in the future! That is not the same as Jesus being violent when He was on the earth.

    And, if Jesus taught His followers to be violent, why then are there numerous times that some of his most vocal followers say that you shouldn't be violent? abdul, thus fall your claim.

    You brought it in as a related article. You can't just expect people to stop talking about it when you go and say that it isn't related.
    You, yourself, in the quote of your's above said that the article was related! And now you're saying it isn't. Which is it, abdul?

    When I looked this up I found out that the verses were not made specifically for the war in Iraq, but that the practice was started thirty years earlier. (Source)

    No one has ever said that there weren't Christians who have done violent things. The assertion that we are countering (or at least trying to) is that Christians are commanded to be violent. Does a fight between Catholics and Protestants necessarily mean that Christianity's "borders" would be enlarged? Hardly. There would be no new converts directly from the war.

    And how many people were killed and imprisoned? Do you know? That is vitally important.

    Do you really mean that? If you do, maybe you should read this article.
  11. TheFightingPikachu

    TheFightingPikachu Smashing!


    Ugh. My previous post failed miserably without the interpretation of the parable. When I said I wouldn't be speaking any more about my reasons why your interpretation of that passage is incorrect, I thought I had included it. As such, I will obviously need to tell the interpretation of that parable. So with my apologies for forgetting something so crucial, here it is:

    In the parable of Luke 19:12-27, a king rules over a country where a number of his citizens hate him. They are rebels. As verse 12 indicates, the king leaves for a long period of time. The timing is very important.

    Now, who is this king, and what does the long absence represent? If you believe Jesus meant this character to represent Himself, you would be correct. And the long absence is the time between Jesus' departure and return. So what does the end of this parable describe? The time when Jesus returns (v. 15). This is the time of the end--the judgment. The timing is crucial, because the parable does not command any killing while the king is away.

    But now, those who are commanded to slay the rebels--who do they represent? To find out, we should turn to the parable of the wheat and tares (Matthew 13:24-30). It is important to note that Jesus gives the interpretation of this parable in Matt. 13:36-43, so we don't have to guess or figure it out ourselves. In verses 40-42, Jesus expressly declares, "Therefore, as the tares are gathered and burned in the fire, so it will be at the end of this age. The Son of Man will send out His angels, and they will gather out of His kingdom all things that offend, and those who practice lawlessness, and will cast them into the furnace of fire. There will be wailing and gnashing of teeth." So, Jesus told us plainly that, not human but angelic beings will be the ones to bring the wicked to their punishment.

    So, simply, the end of the parable in Luke is not a command for any humans to kill any other humans. It is a statement about the judgment at the end of time.

    (I suppose leaving something important out is what happens when I try to work on two separate computers.)

    But now, what about the other passages you mentioned? In Luke 22:35, Jesus says, “When I sent you without money bag, knapsack, and sandals, did you lack anything?” The disciples respond, “Nothing.” Then Jesus tells them, “But now, he who has a money bag, let him take it, and likewise a knapsack; and he who has no sword, let him sell his garment and buy one” (v. 36). But that isn’t all he says. In verse 37, He continues, “For I say to you that this which is written must still be accomplished in Me: ‘and He was numbered with the transgressors.’ [Isaiah 53:12] For the things concerning Me have an end.”

    What does this passage mean? Admit it abdulmuhsee--without the man-centered interpretation of the end of that other parable, you wouldn’t see this as a certain command to kill nonbelievers. As a matter of fact, Luke 22:36 doesn’t even specify upon whom the swords should be used!

    But I readily admit that I don not know the full meaning of the statement about swords there. But even though I do not know the full meaning of that part of verse 36. . . I can still see verse 50. In that verse, one of the disciples (John 18:10 tells us it was Peter) uses a sword to cut off the high priest’s servant’s ear. What does Jesus do? Does He applaud that disciple? No, He says, “Permit even this,” (v. 51). Then He heals the servant’s ear! Oh, I guess you’re right--Jesus commanded such ruthless violence didn't He?

    Now, how about Matthew 10:34? I already mentioned that Muhammad may have even understood it to refer to the final judgment. It certainly will be true that some members of some households will be split in their eternal destinies.

    But it should also be noted that just a few verses later, Jesus says, "he who does not take his cross and follow after Me is not worthy of Me" (Matt. 10:38). Aha! So now we see that Jesus wasn't commanding violence. The sword of which Jesus spoke was not wielded by believers--but against believers!

    Three out-of-context references does not a case against Jesus (or the Bible) make. There is no equivalence in terms of violence between the New Testament and Qur'an, between Jesus and Muhammad. That's just the way it is.

    I dispute that that is what made Christianity Trinitarian, because it was that way long before Constantine's time. I recently read the book Misquoting Jesus, by the very critical Bart Ehrman. He doesn't believe either the Old or New Testament is from God, so he certainly isn't trying to uphold the case for Christianity. Anyway, he gives quite the historical tour of how we got the Bible, but one thing he does not say in that book is that the New Testament is Trinitarian because of anything that happened after Constantine.

    Indeed, what Ehrman states is striking given his harsh criticism of the Bible. He actually states that a number of Christologically-important passages were part of the text even before Constantine. Take the beginning of the gospel of John for example. Of this passage Bart Ehrman writes:

    “The first eighteen verses of John are sometimes called the Prologue. Here is where John speaks of the ‘Word of God’ who was ‘in the beginning with God’ and who ‘was God’ (vv. 1-3). This Word of God made all things that exist. Moreover, it is God’s mode of communication to the world; the Word is how God manifests himself to others. And we are told that at one point the ‘Word became flesh and dwelt among us.’ In other words, God’s own Word became a human being (v. 14). This human being was ‘Jesus Christ’ (v. 17). According to this understanding of things, then, Jesus Christ represents the ‘incarnation’ of God’s own Word, who was with God in the beginning and was himself God, through whom God made all things.”
    (From page 161; Ehrman translated the passage from Greek himself as indicated in the Acknowledgments, page ix)

    Ehrman also states on page 61 that “All our Greek manuscripts contain” the aforementioned verses in John's gospel. Despite the fact that some of these come from before Constantine's time, Ehrman doubts John 1:1-18 was part of the original version of John. But his argument is disingenuous because he also says, “The passage is written in a highly poetic style not found in the rest of the Gospel.” But as a scholar, he should know that a poetic passage is more likely to be earlier! (What’s easier to remember and pass along orally--complex narrative or simple rhythmic poetry?)

    John not early enough for you? Matthew 1:23 quotes a prophecy from the Old Testament calling Jesus Immanuel, which means "God with us." Matthew was written maybe A.D. 80 at the latest.

    Or how about Mark? Mark was probably written around or before A.D. 70. Early in this gospel, Jesus claims to be able to forgive sins, something only God can do. (Then He proves it by healing the paralytic.)

    Even earlier, Paul states in his letter to the Philippians, that Jesus "existed in the form of God" (v. 6). This letter was written around A.D. 62.

    But to some degree I understand if those don't convince you. After all, you believe that people altered those documents. However, there are no variant manuscripts of the passages I have quoted. All of them, even the earliest, have the high view of Jesus that I mentioned.

    On the other hand, I do not have to rely exclusively on the New Testament to prove that Jesus' deity was not a later addition to the text. Instead, we can look even before the beginning of Christianity. The book of Isaiah in the Old Testament speaks of Child to be born who will be called (among other grand titles), "Mighty God" (9:6). This text is found even in the Dead Sea Scrolls, which are from more than a hundred years before Jesus was born. The Messiah is God the Son.

    Oh, how about...
    This. First of all, it is wrong to rape. Therefore, you are accusing Jesus of commanding something wrong. Also, there are no commands to rape in the OT. You should have produced at least a quote.

    You clearly stated that,
    To make a case for equivalence with Islamic extremists, you called the Christian God evil for tormenting people in hell. This is incorrect because it is one thing for God to do the killing, but an entirely different thing for a human to kill because of religion in this age. Furthermore, if my religion is wrong, the Jesus I believe in will not be sentencing anyone to hell. My belief in hell is entirely different than radical Muslims who kill people because of religion.

    Regarding the Salem Witch Trials, I found this website, which said:
    so this wasn't really huge. The executions were unjust to be sure, but it wasn't the absolutely huge incident some seem to think. But in addition to that, guess who was instrumental in stopping the trials?

    Increase Mather was also a Christian, meaning this isn't a case of all the Christians on one side and all the unbelievers on the other side.

    And what about the Crusades? Have a look at this page. This wasn't a case of Christians up and butchering millions of innocent Muslims. I don't claim it was acceptable, but because of how poorly the Crusaders did in the long run, it appears more of them died than Muslims.

    And then there's the Spanish Catholic Inquisition, in which some of the victims were Protestants. This is a far cry from "THE church has blood on its hands," because there is more than one church.

    And finally:
    The entire nation? Really? I suppose you'd better go get a source for that.

    But anyway, you play Constantine, I can play Muhammad. I don't hold Muslims today responsible for anything Muhammad did. Instead, I put the blame squarely on Muhammad. And here is the problem: If he truly believed what Jesus said, he would not have conquered so much. Instead, he had to dismiss nearly all of what Jesus actually said. The fact that Muhammad fought doesn't bother me on its own. But how he fought and the revisionist ideas he had to put forth to justify his violence--those are part of the reason I'm not a Muslim.
    Last edited: Sep 20, 2010
  12. GhostAnime

    GhostAnime Searching for her...

    Unless you're talking about church as in different denominations, we really are talking about Christianity itself as in, anybody that believed in Jesus.

    I'll admit. Maybe Islam was a heck lot more violent; however I find it hard to believe Christianity is not as widespread as it is now because of peace rather than violence (or at least a huge mix of the two). Many books were burned and many people already had their own beliefs and religion. The only way you can force others to give up their way of life is by force, and peace wasn't always that 'force' if you can even call it one.
  13. Ri-Chan

    Ri-Chan ♚ get s l e a z y

    I was never forced into a religion. One can believe, but one can't force someone to believe, unless they punish them, which I doubt any good (I use the term loosely) parent would do, thus making that point, invalid.

    I have always seen it as a choice. I have many Atheist kids/adults I know. It's not like they were forced to believe.

    Again, I know, there are exceptions to this rule, some parents do force their kids (sometimes with abuse, or so I have heard) to follow a certain religion.
  14. CSolarstorm

    CSolarstorm New spicy version

    Christianity and Fighting/Violence

    Okay, let's get back to the root of what you and your brother are trying to refute. I think you took something different from abdulmahsee's message than I did:

    This pretty much sums up the part of his argument I agreed with:

    Fighting has been accepted as a "necessary evil" en masse by a substantial number of Christians, pardoned even in the context of the religion. I don't know how to spell it, and Wikipedia will not correct my spelling, but there is a verse in the Bible saying, "There is a time for everything, and for everything, a time and a place." That includes killing, war, etcetera. And fighting, with swords, guns, sort of includes violence.

    And many good Christians would agree, and did participate in WWII, and condone killing Nazis, and the death of Hitler, and conversely, Israel, the holy origin of the Hebrew religion, has a nuclear stockpile and would use it to defend themselves. (Or else, why do they keep it.)

    Now, I'm going to go over the examples I gave and their respective reactions.

    a) Christians who inscribe Holy Bible verses on the bullets; why did they put Christian verses on the bullets as they're shipped out to kill in any war, regardless of any timeframe or when they were made?

    The timeframe in which they were made doesn't really change what they are, a disgusting misuse of the Bible in war, which is supposedly not what Christianity is supposed to advocate. They were put there to credit Christianity/God/their own religion in the name of the killing that bullet does; if you can think of a better explanation, offer it.

    b) Christians who execute 19 people for straying from the path of God into witchcraft; why did they kill them?

    We make a bigger deal about one American held hostage in Korea or Iran; but when I bring this up, essentially I get "it depends, how many people did they kill?" or "It wasn't that many, and besides, it was a Christian who stopped the practice." It was Christians who started the practice, and a Christian who stopped it, probably because it was a Christian society where there were mostly Christians.

    The women were executed for straying from God's path and turning to witchcraft, which was considered to be of the Devil at the time.

    c) Christians who war against each other for differences in their religion; why were they at war?

    They were at war because they were fighting for what they believed was the true interpretation of Christianity.

    I never said there'd be converts from the war, just the fact that the war happened. But about converts? Tell that to the Phillipines, the Americas, Africa, etc.

    d) Now; if a nation that is a religious theocracy conquered somewhere, and then missionaries came to convert the native people to Christianity, does that make the conquest inherently "Christian"? I am aware that missionaries were not always on the same page of the barbaric practices of the actual soldiers and conquerers; but they did not take a substantial effort to stop the evil of the conquering process, they sided with their nation in a war of aggression; and they took advantage of the actions of the conquering forces to convert people who were conveniently already at gunpoint. The missionaries are hardly innocent then; while they themselves did not convert by the sword, the parasitized off the conquerers who would yield the sword for them. So what about this symbiosis does not make it an inherently Christian conquest that has happened time and time again in this world? In the Phillipines? In the Americas? Africa? Anywhere missionaries go?

    To the point: their religion factors a great deal into their actions.

    All of this violence, be it whether the Bible commanded it, the church commanded it, or not, stemmed from this religion, Christianity. Fighting, maybe an unintended consequence, maybe even an antiquated notion; has been caused and committed, in the past, by Christians, in the name of Christianity. Just like it has been caused and committed by Islam; or any religious or political structure, once again, I maintain.

    I too, acknowledge, there are more violent passages in the Qu'ran; and I think we can probably make the differentiation that the Qu'ran has literal commandments to commit violence, while the Bible does not posess these literal statements.

    And now for a very verbose statement that could possibly offend some people, so take it with a grain of salt.

    Both, however, possess allegorical statements of violence, and the common thread through all of them is the undemocratic, authorial notion that there is one king, you love him, you go to heaven, you don't, you go to hell. This is Machiavellian. There is no democracy, no fairness in it, in fact, humans are the subjects of an entirely different species, angels, and God, and therefore some people aren't entirely happy about that idea, and look at it as if anyone belonging to such a regime has Stockholm Syndrome.

    Inherently, the promise of every religion is that it is the only true religion, and there will come a day when only the people who believe this religion will live, and there will only be one religion allowed; so no matter how tolerant one religion is, there is always an inherent ultimatum sown in that one day this tolerance will no longer exist and the entire world will be a religious theocracy, when God makes his move. This brings into question whether or not the tolerance is sincere. Ultimately, what many monotheistic religions can boil down to though, is authority: one God, who crafted one homogenous message, which has been demonstrated does sometimes clash with tolerance and diversity. See the symbiosis between conquerors and missionaries above.

    The way I see it though, and the reason I still accept Christianity when I think this way is that humanity is realistically subject to abuse in this world, we don't really run things, there are forces that help and hurt us simultaneously, and our existence is fleeting, and the only way to really accept this is serenity, humility, peace, faith, all the positive things that the Bible talks about. (The idea that God is a patriarch though, I will not vouch for; I believe God is omnimorphus.)

    And where did this fighting come from? They say kids learn from their parents not by what they say, but by what they witness them doing; so if God is so violent upon the human race, yet tells humans to be peaceful, the human race will seek to imitate his actions before they seek to listen to what he says.

    Ultimately, we are made in God's image, and therefore possess bogth sides of it; dominating patriarch that commands warrior-angels, who exterminates his nonobedient subjects with natural disasters; and that is an image laden with violence. On the other hand, his image is also that of a creator of beauty, a healer, a provider, and a forgiver. (Plus, he practices abstinence.) Humans reflect all of these attributes at different times, regardless of their religion, but their religion does not make them immune to it, nor can the actions of people be completely separated from their beliefs.
  15. Murky_Night

    Murky_Night Jirafa

    sadly that is very true, i have friend and his mother beat him for "sinning" luckily he now lives with his foster parents.
  16. It could be both:

    Kids being forced

    Kids choosing to do it cause they want to be like their parents.

    All of my dad's family is christen and I've known them for years (8, I'm 14, almost 15), yet, I'm an atheist. So it could be both. I choose not to believe any religion. My friend's dad was forced to be Baptist and he grew up with his parents thinking Smurfs were Witchcraft from what mom told me (yeah). Anyways, not here to troll, here to say my opinion on the matter.
  17. Murky_Night

    Murky_Night Jirafa

    when my sister-in-law was little, her mother said those little tamogachi things (you know where you create your own family of cute little animal type things) were evil and that they play god. And in fact i heard a lot of religious people are against pokemon because it is a recreation of gods creatures.
  18. abdulmuhsee

    abdulmuhsee Well-Known Member

    I posted a lengthy reply, but Serebii signed me out before it was submitted and it was lost. I'm not going to type it out again, but I will post a brief summary.

    Bukhari 1:3 clarifies that Waraqa read/copied the gospels in Hebrew and only recited them in Arabic, and a better translation of what you have mentioned from the original Arabic, which is mentioned side-by-side with the English in almost any book release, would be that he was able to recite them in Arabic. 'Read' implies there was a written Arabic copy he was reading from, which it makes no acknowledgement of. Bukhari 1:3 was most likely available immediately after the hadith you quoted on the website you copied from.

    You've also missed the entire context of the hadith in which Waraqa accepts Muhammad's prophethood, and have also missed that he died immediately after they met. You have put words in my mouth that I said Muhammad never met a Christian until X date, when I said he did not have extended contact with them until X date, which follows in Waraqa dying three days later.

    Your insinuation is immaterial, and it is no different than a Jew claiming that Jesus received his knowledge from Jews, was repeating what he heard from Jewish sources, and was therefore taught by Jews and not God. The insinuation is also pure speculation based on Christian sentiment.

    This will be my last contribution to the thread, both because I lost the text I composed, and because the argument in this regard has now come full circle at least once.

    I originally posted in response to TFP claiming that the killings of the OT were far removed from the NT, and now I'm being requested to prove and quote the killings of the OT while simultaneously being discouraged from quoting them.

    And when I quote them, do not accuse me of abusing Jesus, since I cannot quote Biblical verses without mentioning him, and I am merely spelling out the logic of your claims, not maligning Jesus' character.

    God, or in your case Jesus, commanded death in retribution for leaving his religion:

    "Thus says the Lord... kill your brother, your friend, and your neighbor... about 3,000 of the people fell that day." (Exodus 32:27-28)

    God, or in your case Jesus, commanded believers to fight non-believers in one of many places, with the women being killed and raped:

    "They did battle against Midian, as the Lord had commanded Moses, and killed every male..... they took the women and their children as spoils of war..... Moses said to them, 'Have you allowed these women to live?..... Kill every male among the children, kill every woman who is not a virgin, but all the young girls who are virgins keep alive for yourselves." (Numbers 31:7-18)

    I could tire myself out by doing this since it fills a sizable portion of the OT, but I hope this fulfills your requested 'rape and pillage' quota. Since Jesus is God according to you, your claim that the NT is far removed from the OT can't possibly be realized, since God commanded these things,

    And for the second time, teaching non-violence while living under oppression and lacking power to oppose your enemies is nothing unique; Muhammad did the same. Jesus' command in the NT for his disciples to sell their cloaks in order to buy swords could only be for a possible violent rendezvous. Swords are for violence. Someone that sells their clothing for weapons is not strictly a pacifist.

    Saying this for the third time, if you'd like to believe the Romans were not involved in this with the full backing and force of their armies and resources of the nation, fine. I'll leave any additional reading to whoever wants to spend their time with it.

    Since you say you don't have a problem with fighting, but merely how it's done, and one of your reasons for not being Muslim is an ambiguous accusation that Muhammad did it the 'wrong' way, I'll clarify some of the 'revisionist' stipulations his fighting involved, which were at least partially mentioned in the article you enjoy copying piecemeal:

    1. Do not break your treaties

    2. Do not mutilate bodies

    3. Do not kill women

    4. Do not kill children

    5. Do not kill monks and worshipers

    6. Do not kill laborers

    7. Do not burn vegetation or torch the land

    I'm not sure how much more stringent you can get in how you fight, but the fighting you seem to approve of must involve nothing more than blowing dandelion fuzz on each others' eyes.

    Fighting is violent and unpleasant regardless of how stringent the conditions are, it involves unsavory things like killing people, and I fail to see how the actions Jesus commanded are a better way to fight, which violates most of the ethical stipulations for fighting in Islam.

    Feel free to pick apart this summary and continue the debate if you want, but it's tiring to keep checking this thread knowing that the same issues will be repeated endlessly.
    Last edited: Sep 21, 2010
  19. TheFightingPikachu

    TheFightingPikachu Smashing!

    Rape and Pillage? Not the Jews

    You know, I really need to stop procrastinating:
    "I find it hard to believe…" = Argument from Personal Incredulity = incredibly weak argument
    Go find a source or something. What do you even mean by "many books were burned"?

    And you need to say something more specific than "believed in Jesus." Believed in Jesus how? Some people believe in Jesus in the sense that they believe He taught some stuff that might be kinda important, some believe that He died and came back to life, Hitler believed Jesus was all about fighting Jews, and some Satanists even "believe in Jesus" in he sense that they claim he was a powerful Satanic magician.

    Then there was Thomas Jefferson, who literally cut and pasted his own Bible together. It left out any reference to anything supernatural, dismissing it offhand--despite the fact that Jews of that day had supernatural beliefs (meaning the burden of proof was on Jefferson). Anyway, Jefferson claimed to be a Christian, meaning he followed the teachings of Jesus (which he had carefully edited). By the unfortunately unspecific definition "believed in Jesus," even Muhammad could count as a full-fledged Christian.

    Last post? Well let's see exactly how the debate has come full circle.

    Here is where I misunderstood your argument in part. It sounded like you were charging Jesus with wrongdoing. Now I realize that you were trying to make the Christian religion out to be worse than Islam, so some of my arguments were slightly misdirected. However, the claim that Jesus commanded rape in the OT--how is that not an accusation?

    Speculation, your honor.

    I suppose we have come full circle because this doesn't say "rape," nor is that the only thing it could mean (even if it could indicate rape). The phrase "take for yourselves" does not necessitate rape. It could mean "take as a wife," or even "take as a female servant." As such, your statement that it definitely commands rape is speculation (in courtroom terms). Since it only might mean rape (which even then, sounds like a stretch), you have pushed your argument far beyond what you can logically claim.

    Also, that command is not a prewar command, but a postwar command. From Numbers 31:14-16, we can see that Moses clearly expected the Israelites to kill all the Midianites, especially the women who had enticed the Israelites to sin by taking them as wives and worshiping Baal. But the Israelites instead preserved them alive. When they brought them back, Moses made that command.

    And also, the first reference you listed was not a command to kill just anyone leaving the religion. I Corinthians 10:8 makes it clear that those also committed sexual immorality.

    So, no, you couldn't go all day quoting verses that show the Israelites raping and pillaging. They killed quite a few ancient, wicked people groups. Did they rape? No. Did they pillage? No, they took the spoil (sometimes). Do you know anything about these ancient people groups? I fully admit that I don't have a source for this, but I have been told by some careful history enthusiasts that the Midianites, Hittites, and the Canaanites in general were so morally corrupt that when Rome (also quite morally corrupt) excavated their lands later, the Romans were ashamed of what they found out about their practices.

    More speculation. See, your claim that it could only be for a violent rendezvous is inaccurate because it could be for something else. (BTW, a violent rendezvous against who?) Anyway, when there could be multiple meanings, you can't just pick and choose which meaning to accept. I already showed why this isn't a command for violence against unbelievers, yet you believe it must be. That's courtroom-disallowed speculation.

    No source? That's just great. You know, you never sourced any of your historical claims. That's not really debating. You should have provided some sources to make your claims into arguments. As it is, they stay unsupported claims, not arguments.

    First of all, I never said I was against war. I believe war can be justified in some contexts. But it matters who is going to war, who they are fighting, and what else the combatants claim to believe. (Just to be fully clear, the Bible doesn't forbid...say, Christians working as police officers and killing desperate criminals.)

    That said, I wasn't using the word "revisionist" to refer to Muhammad's fighting (though it does have some application there). I was referring to the fact that Muhammad wrote in the Qur'an that Jesus didn't actually die. Since all the early sources indicate that Jesus died (whether they claim there was anything supernatural about Jesus or not), this is revisionist. In fact, let's look at what the Qur'an says:
    So, essentially, by saying essentially, "Sure, it looked like Jesus died, but that's not what really happened," the Qur'an pretty much confirms the fact that Jesus died (which is historically indisputable anyway, whether Jesus came back from the dead or not). This is enough to show that Muhammad was not a prophet.

    But also, Muhammad claimed to accept Jesus as a prophet, but only by ignoring almost everything He said. Jesus taught nonviolent preaching, but Muhammad ignored that, conquering many. (But I suppose they all attacked him first, right?)

    The Jews did not have any rule against war, so to credit their supposed "wrongs" on Christianity is a mistake, pure and simple. The Jews didn't "rape and pillage" anyway; I think that is the general territory of extremist Muslims today, and abdulmuhsee, you've come dangerously close to justifying their wrong actions.

    To bring this all back to the topic, yes, religion can be forced. Some people have forced Christianity on others. Some people have even forced anti-religion on others. But no abdulmuhsee, no SunnyC, violence is not an inherent part of every religion. Violence was how Muhammad spread his religion. Violence was how some popes spread their religion. But violence was not the way Jesus spread His religion.
  20. Slash4life

    Slash4life uncollared

    You seriously aren't trying to claim that Israel never raped or pillaged under their god's command? And said ancient wicked groups of people? What proof do you have of wickedness? Because they were said to be morally corrupt? That can easily boil down to having different spiritual beliefs. I believe in magic, yet unless provoked I am a pacifist (excluding certain bedroom activities). Does this make me morally bankrupt? Fundies would say I deserve hell for any association with magic, yet I have never used it maliciously. I am also into several things sexually that definitely put me in the heterodoxy. Yet I adhere to the rule of Safe, Sane, and Consensual. Just because my activities may be considered strange or even downright disgusting to an outsider, does that mean that I'm not a good, moral person? Do my religion and sexual interests make me wicked?
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