Religious Groups Remain Concerned After Obama Admin Releases New Abortion Pill Mandate Rules

pills containersWASHINGTON — Religious groups across the country remain concerned after the Obama administration released its new rules surrounding what has been dubbed the Obamacare abortion pill mandate.

According to the revised regulations, women would still be able to obtain contraceptives at no cost to them. But for-profit companies and other similar organizations that object to personally providing coverage must contact either their insurance company or the federal government and advise of their religious objections. If contacting the government, officials will then contact the business’ insurance company and the insurance company will cover the contraceptives at no cost.

“Women across the country should have access to preventive services, including contraception,” HHS Secretary Sylvia Burwell said in a statement. “At the same time, we recognize the deeply held views on these issues, and we are committed to securing women’s access to important preventive services at no additional cost under the Affordable Care Act, while respecting religious beliefs.”

But some pro-abortion groups, as well as Democratic members of Congress, such as Sen. Patty Murray, Wash., expressed opposition to the new rules, stating that they give too much “power over the health care decisions of the women they employ.” Murray opined that the regulations demonstrate why “the Supreme Court’s deeply harmful ruling in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby is completely unacceptable.”

According to the Washington Post, Murray plans to introduce a bill in Congress that would override the U.S. Supreme Court decision.

However, while some opined that the new rules give too much freedom to businesses, religious groups said that the regulations still wrongfully force people of faith to be complicit in providing abortifacients to women.

“The government keeps digging the hole deeper,” said Adèle Auxier Keim, legal counsel at the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty. “Just last week, the Supreme Court ordered HHS not to enforce the exact rules they finalized today. But the government still won’t give up on its quest to force … religious employers to distribute contraceptives.”

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“Especially after the Supreme Court’s recent King v. Burwell decision allowed the government to expand its healthcare exchanges, there is no reason at all the government needs religious employers to help it distribute these products,” he added.

As previously reported, last week, the Becket Fund, which represented the popular craft chain Hobby Lobby before the high court last year, filed a legal challenge with the U.S. Supreme Court on behalf of Houston Baptist University, East Texas Baptist University and the Pennsylvania-based Westminster Theological Seminary.

The schools had sued the Obama administration in 2013 out of their belief that the government’s attempt at exempting them from the mandate still required them to provide abortion-inducing drugs for staff. The University of Notre Dame had filed a similar lawsuit over the compromise, as did the evangelical Geneva College of Beaver Falls and the Roman Catholic dioceses in Erie and Pittsburgh.

The U.S. Supreme Court remanded Notre Dame’s case back to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals, ordering it to reconsider its decision in light of the high court’s 2014 Hobby Lobby opinion. Geneva College and the Roman Catholic dioceses in Erie and Pittsburgh were granted temporary relief in April while their challenge moved forward in court.

“It is all well and good for the government to think it has threaded the needle and found a way for religious nonprofits to comply with the contraceptive mandate without violating their religious beliefs, but ultimately it is for the religious adherent to determine how much facilitation or complicity is too much,” last week’s Becket Fund appeal reads.


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  • The Skeptical Chymist

    Look on the bright side – at least the Baphomet statue will not be put up!

  • spybott

    Christians will soon be slaughtered like in other countries

    • Rebus Caneebus

      Because they can’t push their religion on everyone else? Are you insane?

      • All In

        But promoting atheism is okay with you?

        • Rebus Caneebus

          No. Who is promoting atheism by removing a 10C monument? Is every empty lot promoting atheism?

          • All In

            Every Christian symbol that is removed is replaced with atheism.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Every Christian symbol that is removed is replaced with atheism.

            Complete nonsense. A blank space does not promote atheism.

          • All In

            Not nonsense at all. Most Christian symbols that have been removed were at the demands of atheists. In each case, a representation of God was removed and replaced with nothing – the perfect result for atheists = atheism.

            But that’s ok. You can remove every symbol you want. God will have the last say anyway.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Most Christian symbols that have been removed were at the demands of atheists.

            Actually, they were removed at the demand of the US constitution and judges. Atheists may have brought many of the lawsuits, but they won because the law is on their side, not yours.

            In each case, a representation of God was removed and replaced with nothing – the perfect result for atheists = atheism.

            Whine harder. Christian hegemony is going away.

          • All In

            As I said, you can remove every symbol you want. You are the one that will be whining last if you don’t accept Christ. But that choice is yours.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            As I said, you can remove every symbol you want.

            Because the law requires the government to be neutral, instead of pushing your religion.

            You are the one that will be whining last if you don’t accept Christ.

            Ah, the usual refrain when a Christian has lost a legal argument.

          • All In

            It’s legal. But here’s the thing, America had these symbols in honor to God who made America what is was. By taking these symbols away, you also remove God from America.

            It’s easy to say now that that won’t have any effect. But history shows it does. It’s only a matter of time. And that consequence will fall to you or your children. So as I said, you’ll be whining one way or the other. People do reap what they sow.

            God is far bigger than you or your opinion.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            But here’s the thing, America had these symbols in honor to God who made America what is was. By taking these symbols away, you also remove God from America.

            What a weak god you have.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Rebus, with all due respect, and I realize that you are responding to the “remove God from America” comment, which cannot be done since He is omnipresent, and I really do mean this in a loving manner, but you are not going to think that God is weak when you meet Him. I say this as a former a-theist and big-time anti-Christian: this is the God Who spoke 100 billion galaxies into existence out of literally nothing. You are correct that He is omnipresent, but He is also omnipotent. God bless.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            So you have no problem with removing the ten commandments monument? I don’t care what silly things you believe, as long as you don’t have my government push your religion.

          • All In

            > I don’t care what silly things you believe, as long as you don’t have my government push your religion.

            You are the one who is believing silly things, such as there is no God. As I said, your opinion will change dramatically the moment you meet Him and He reminds you of your rebellion. But you still have time to accept Christ as Lord and Savior.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            You are the one who is believing silly things, such as there is no God.
            Yeah, how silly to not believe in invisible superbeings.

          • All In

            > Yeah, how silly to not believe in invisible superbeings.

            You have proof that God doesn’t exist, right?

          • Rebus Caneebus

            No, there’s no reason to think any gods exist.

          • Jim H

            You are just stating Pascal’s Wager, which was flawed when he made it and it still is.

          • Ambulance Chaser

            This is my belief as well. Christians are free to believe whatever they want but they must accept the law. If they want to believe that you, me, and all the justices of the Supreme Courts of Oklahoma and the United States are going to burn in Hell, well that’s sick but it’s none of my business.

            All I ask is that they understand and obey the law.

          • All In

            > well that’s sick but it’s none of my business.

            It is sick to deny God and spend eternity regretting that decision. It is your complete business, as you will be the one reaping the consequences of your decision.

            > All I ask is that they understand and obey the law.

            God asks that we obey His laws. It’s apparent you don’t care. So why should we care about human laws when God’s are the most important and you deny them?

          • Rebus Caneebus

            God asks that we obey His laws.

            And other gods demand that we obey THEIR mutually exclusive laws. So why should people who don’t believe your god exists obey your god’s laws?

          • Ambulance Chaser

            Because you can’t prove that God or His alleged laws exist.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            It is sick to worship a god that promotes slavery, murder, genocide, child/human sacrifice, incest, gender inequality, bigotry, hatred, etc.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Well, I think the Ten Commandments are pretty cool actually – they seem to be a good thing to teach our kids, no? I mean, what is silly about them?

          • Rebus Caneebus

            But do you think the government ought to promote your religious beliefs? You didn’t answer how you felt about removing them from public property.
            As for silly, the first commandment is pretty silly since it wants people to believe in an imaginary being.

          • markinator

            Yup! And if the claim to being the one and only god is true, then why is their god so worried that we might have “strange gods before” it? It’s laughable!

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Rebus, I guess I don’t understand why you guys are so afraid of a Ten Commandments monument? Are you afraid that God might be real?

            As for imaginary, what proof do you have that God is imaginary? Here are two proofs that He is for real, please provide rational evidence for the contrary:

            Kalam Cosmological Argument for the Existence of God:

            Premise 1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
            Premise 2. The universe began to exist.
            Conclusion: Therefore, the universe had a Cause.

            Moral Argument for the Existence of God:

            Premise 1: If there is no God, then objective moral values do not exist.
            Premise 2: Objective evil exists.
            Conclusion 1: Therefore, objective moral values DO exist.
            Conclusion 2: Therefore, God exists.

            God bless you, Rebus!

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Rebus, I guess I don’t understand why you guys are so afraid of a Ten Commandments monument?

            We aren’t. Put them on private property — we’ll still see them.

            Why are you so afraid to move 10C monuments to private property? There are probably more churches than government buildings, and all of the churches can put up as many 10C monuments as they like.

            Why do you want the 10 commandments on public property?

            As for imaginary, what proof do you have that God is imaginary?

            There’s no good reason to think any gods exist.

            Kalam: premise 1 is false. Spontaneous particle-antiparticle pairs exist, and are not caused. Radioactive decay is not caused.

            Moral: morals aren’t objective, they’re subjective.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Why are you so afraid to move 10C monuments to private property?”

            We aren’t – we have them on private property lots of places. But, if you aren’t afraid of them, why make a big stink over them being on public property? They are on the SCOTUS building too.

            “Why do you want the 10 commandments on public property?”

            For the same reason they are on SCOTUS: to educate the masses that there must be an objective basis or grounding for moral values and duties. (Premise 1 for the Moral Argument.)

            “There’s no good reason to think any gods exist.”

            That is not proof – it is an assertion. Try again.

            “Kalam: premise 1 is false. Spontaneous particle-antiparticle pairs exist, and are not caused.”

            False, they require a QM field to generate them, and a QM field is NOT nothing, not by a long shot.

            ” Radioactive decay is not caused.”

            Radioactive decay is a process – not something coming into existence uncaused. Premise 1 of Kalam holds.

            “Moral: morals aren’t objective, they’re subjective.”

            OK, but now you do not get to make any objective moral claims about anything, including having the 10 Commandments on public property. It also means that you cannot condemn what Hitler did to the Jews, the Crusades or Inquisition, or Catholic priests molesting little boys. Can’t say anything negative morally about Christians or our God, either, because, in your view, objective moral values and duties do not exist – morality is just like ice cream flavors. If you can consistently stick to your guns on Premise 2, including if someone you love is harmed by another, then I will withdraw the Moral Argument.

            But Kalam still stands. And, here is another proof that I will substitute for the Moral Argument – provided you stay consistent with Premise 2, which very few a-theists can do:

            Premise 1. The fine-tuning of the universe is due to either physical necessity, chance, or design.

            Premise 2. It is not due to physical necessity or chance.

            Conclusion. Therefore, it is due to design.

            God bless!

          • Rebus Caneebus

            But, if you aren’t afraid of them, why make a big stink over them being on public property?

            Because the government can’t promote your religion.

            Why can’t you understand this simple constitutional principle?

            For the same reason they are on SCOTUS: to educate the masses that there must be an objective basis or grounding for moral values and duties.

            So why is Muhammad there? And Draco? And Zeus? And Napoleon? And Confucius? And, by the way, the 10C aren’t listed.

            That is not proof – it is an assertion. Try again.

            The burden of proof is on you — with no grounds to believe something, I’m not going to believe it. You can believe any sort of nonsense you like; I’m not as gullible as you.

            False, they require a QM field to generate them

            Your “proof” talks about causes — a QM field isn’t a cause, because particle pairs don’t happen infinitely — they happen at discrete times, and are uncaused. Same with when a radioactive isotope decays. The act of decaying itself is not caused. If it was “caused” by being radioactive, it would decay immediately (because that’s what “cause” means).

            Radioactive decay is a process – not something coming into existence uncaused.

            Your claim was that everything has a cause — radioactive decay is not caused.

            but now you do not get to make any objective moral claims about anything

            I never do.

            including having the 10 Commandments on public property.

            I’m not making any kind of “moral” claim, I’m making a legal claim. But if I were to make a moral claim, I’d make a subjective moral claim.

            I’d also point out that everyone, even people who purport to be making “objective” moral claims are really only making subjective claims.

            But Kalam still stands

            No, it doesn’t. I don’t grant your first premise. Go ahead and try to prove your first premise — so far, you’ve only asserted it. Have you observed the entire universe for billions of years all at once to demonstrate that everything has a cause?

            And as for your “design” proof, I don’t grant premise 1.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Because the government can’t promote your religion.”

            Who says the government is promoting my religion? The Ten Commandments are one of the bases for grounding law in America. I just don’t get why it threatens you so much UNLESS you have a cosmic authority problem:

            “I want atheism to be true and am made uneasy by the fact that some of the most intelligent and well-informed people I know are religious believers. It isn’t just that I don’t believe in God and, naturally, hope that I’m right in my belief. It’s that I hope there is no God! I don’t want there to be a God; I don’t want the universe to be like that. My guess is that this cosmic authority problem is not a rare condition and that it is responsible for much of the scientism and reductionism of our time.” — Professor Thomas Nagel, NYU

            “So why is Muhammad there? And Draco? And Zeus? And Napoleon? And Confucius?”

            Proves my point – the very reason for the display – thank you! You do believe in freedom OF religion, not merely freedom FROM religion, right? 🙂

            “And, by the way, the 10C aren’t listed.”

            As you walk up the steps to the building which houses the U.S. Supreme Court you can see near the top of the building a row of the world’s law givers and each one is facing one in the middle who is facing forward with a full frontal view – it is Moses and he is holding the Ten Commandments. As you enter the Supreme Court courtroom, the two huge oak doors have the Ten Commandments engraved on each lower portion of each door. As you sit inside the courtroom, you can see the wall, right above where the Supreme Court judges sit, a display of the Ten Commandments. There are Bible verses etched in stone all over the Federal Buildings and Monuments in Washington, D.C.

            “The burden of proof is on you”

            False, a-theism is not the “lack of belief in God,” it is the belief that “there is no God.” “Lack of belief” is just the state of your psychological condition and bears no warrant on truth. You owe just as much evidence for the No God Hypothesis as I do for the God Hypothesis. Thus far, you have put up nothing. It would seem that your a-theism is, like mine was, blind faith.

            “Your “proof” talks about causes — a QM field isn’t a cause, because particle pairs don’t happen infinitely — they happen at discrete times, and are uncaused.”

            A QM field most certainly IS a cause – the cause for matter-anti-matter coming into existence, not out of nothing! Consider this quote by a fellow a-theist who shot down Lawrence Krauss’s “something from nothing:”

            “But that’s just not right. Relativistic-quantum-field-theoretical vacuum states — no less than giraffes or refrigerators or solar systems — are particular arrangements of elementary physical stuff. The true relativistic-quantum-field-­theoretical equivalent to there not being any physical stuff at all isn’t this or that particular arrangement of the fields — what it is (obviously, and ineluctably, and on the contrary) is the simple absence of the fields! The fact that some arrangements of fields happen to correspond to the existence of particles and some don’t is not a whit more mysterious than the fact that some of the possible arrangements of my fingers happen to correspond to the existence of a fist and some don’t. And the fact that particles can pop in and out of existence, over time, as those fields rearrange themselves, is not a whit more mysterious than the fact that fists can pop in and out of existence, over time, as my fingers rearrange themselves. And none of these poppings — if you look at them aright — amount to anything even remotely in the neighborhood of a creation from nothing.” –David Albert

            “Your claim was that everything has a cause — radioactive decay is not caused.”

            You have a fundamental mis-understanding of Premise 1: it is NOT “everything has a cause,” but “everything that comes into existence has a cause.” HUGE difference. That is why your radioactive decay fails.

            Kalam still stands, and you have provided no defeaters for either Premise 1 or Premise 2.

            “I never do.”

            I doubt that. I doubt that when you are mis-treated you do not make objective moral claims. Your view is unlivable.

            “I’m not making any kind of “moral” claim, I’m making a legal claim.”

            Legal claims are grounded in moral claims. (If not, then people would not take the time to pass laws.) You already lost that part of the debate.

            “Go ahead and try to prove your first premise — so far, you’ve only asserted it.”

            Fair enough:

            Premise 1 is supported by the fact that “out of nothing, nothing comes,” otherwise, anything and everything could come from
            nothing, and experience confirms this – no purple elephants popping randomly into our living room. (And, we know that every one of the 7 billion people on this planet came into existence causally.) Causality forms the foundation of scientific inquiry. You are not going to throw science away, are you?

            “And as for your “design” proof, I don’t grant premise 1.”

            Feel free to defeat it. Until then, it stands. 🙂

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Who says the government is promoting my religion?

            It can’t promote anyone’s religion.

            The Ten Commandments are one of the bases for grounding law in America.

            Ridiculous; the first commandment directly contradicts the first amendment, just for a start. Many of the other commandments would be violations of people’s religious rights if enforced, and the few that make sense as laws are found all through human history, they didn’t arise from Christianity or Judaism.

            I just don’t get why it threatens you so much UNLESS you have a cosmic authority problem

            No, I have a human authority problem, where some Christians seem to think the government should push their religion.

            “So why is Muhammad there? And Draco? And Zeus? And Napoleon? And Confucius?”

            Proves my point – the very reason for the display – thank you! You do believe in freedom OF religion, not merely freedom FROM religion, right? 🙂

            I do. You don’t, though. You want the government to play favorites, and you dishonestly cited the supreme court building as if it promoted your religion and didn’t mention any others.

            False, a-theism is not the “lack of belief in God,” it is the belief that “there is no God.”

            No, atheism means “not a theist”. I’m not a theist. All it takes for me to not be a theist is to not believe in any gods. I don’t.

            A QM field most certainly IS a cause – the cause for matter-anti-matter coming into existence, not out of nothing!

            The QM field isn’t the CAUSE — if I throw a rock into a still pond and make waves, the cause was the rock, the water is just the medium for the waves.

            If NO particle pair is created at time T1, and a particle pair is created at time T2, what caused the pair to appear at time T2 and not T1? If you claim the QM field caused it, why didn’t it appear at time T1? That’s like saying the water “caused” the waves instead of the rock.

            Kalam still stands, and you have provided no defeaters for either Premise 1 or Premise 2.

            Like I pointed out, you have yet to provide proof for your premise 1. You are merely asserting it, and I’m not buying it.

            I doubt that. I doubt that when you are mis-treated you do not make objective moral claims. Your view is unlivable.

            No, my view is pragmatic. Morals are opinions — they are subjective.

            Premise 1 is supported by the fact that “out of nothing, nothing comes,” otherwise, anything and everything could come from nothing

            Now you’re just asserting more nonsense. If things can come out of nothing, you have no reason to assume “anything and everything could”. One (old) theory about the expansion of the universe is that space-time expansion could create elementary particles due to the expansion. That wouldn’t be “anything and everything”, that would be only elementary particles.

            You can’t just make up crap and expect me to believe it.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “It can’t promote anyone’s religion.”

            Who says it is?

            “the few that make sense as laws are found all through human history, they didn’t arise from Christianity or Judaism.”

            If God exists, then it is highly plausible that these laws did arise from the God Who wrote the law on our hearts (gave us our consciences), see Romans 2:15. Since I have given you proofs for God’s existence, it is fair to consider the human conscience. Darwinism certainly has no explanation for it, other than a wing and a prayer, IMO.

            “No, I have a human authority problem, where some Christians seem to think the government should push their religion.”

            What is wrong with Christians pushing their religion, under a-theism? It sounds like you are asserting an objective moral claim now, violating Premise 2 of the Moral Argument. That did not take long. 🙂

            “You want the government to play favorites, and you dishonestly cited the supreme court building as if it promoted your religion and didn’t mention any others.”

            Not at all – in fact your point that the Ten Commandments were one basis for our laws, but there are others, only reinforces the point that this monument is there for historical purposes, not religious ones. I am VERY thankful for you pointing out that other religious and historical figures are also present. That was very good of you, even though it did help my argument – I appreciate your honesty. And, I really was not trying to exclude others, just focusing on the disputed Judeo-Christian symbology, because a-theists usually do not have problems with religions other than Christianity – at least I did not.

            Also, you used the word “dishonest” in an objective sense in your quote above – thank you! Therefore, you have affirmed Premise 2 (or Conclusion 1, take your pick) of the Moral Argument for the Existence of God, and it is now back in play for sure. So, that is 3 proofs that I have given you, and you have provided no good evidence on your side for the No God Hypothesis, despite some good attempts on your part.

            (Recall, the Moral Argument:

            Premise 1: If there is no God, then objective moral values do
            not exist.
            Premise 2: Objective evil exists.
            Conclusion 1: Therefore, objective moral values DO exist.
            Conclusion 2: Therefore, God exists.)

            “All it takes for me to not be a theist is to not believe in any gods.”

            Simply not true. Here is the definition from the Stanford University Encyclopedia of Philosophy:

            “‘Atheism’ means the negation of theism, the denial of the existence of God.”

            Only kindergartner a-theists use the “lack of belief” definition, not philosophers: “lack of belief” just tells us something about your psychological condition, something we are not interested in when getting at the truth. We want to know if God exists, and you have said that it is not rational to believe in God, but I have provided you with plenty of evidence to the contrary. So, in order to make the claim that it is not rational to believe in God, you would need to provide some counter evidence.

            “If you claim the QM field caused it, why didn’t it appear at time T1?”

            Great question! Because the QM field had not rearranged itself at that time to generate particle pairs, but did do so at time T2. The cause of the particles coming into existence was the rearrangement of the QM field. Here, below, I narrow down the important section of the quote from above. This is the guy who spanked Larry Krauss so badly that Krauss had to admit that his “nothing” was not truly nothing after all. (You didn’t waste money on Krauss’ book, did you?!?)

            “The fact that some arrangements of fields happen to correspond to the existence of particles and some don’t is not a whit more mysterious than the fact that some of the possible arrangements of my fingers happen to correspond to the existence of a fist and some don’t. And the fact that particles can pop in and out of existence, over time, as those fields rearrange themselves, is not a whit more mysterious than the fact that fists can pop in and out of existence, over time, as my fingers rearrange themselves.” — David Albert

            “Like I pointed out, you have yet to provide proof for your premise 1.”

            I already did – here it is again, I gave you 7 billion and 3 pieces of evidence in support of Premise 1. Just provide one legitimate counterexample, and you can publish it, collect your Nobel Prize (I will be the first to congratulate you :-)), and wait for a-theists to build statues to you. (Trust me, they will.)

            Premise 1 is supported by the fact that “out of nothing, nothing comes,” otherwise, anything and everything could come from
            nothing, and experience confirms this – no purple elephants popping randomly into our living room. (And, we know that every one of the 7 billion people on this planet came into existence causally.) Causality forms the foundation of scientific inquiry. That is 7 billion + 3 reasons to believe in Premise 1.

            “Morals are opinions — they are subjective.”

            Not when you talked (erroneously) about me being dishonest above. All of a sudden, morals become objective to you – at least that one. 🙂 That is why I said your view is unlivable, and why we now have 3 solid proofs for the existence of God in place in our discussion: Kalam, Moral, and Fine-tuning.

            “If things can come out of nothing, you have no reason to assume “anything and everything could”.”

            Maybe, but why would we not expect that to be true? In fact, if the universe, in particular, could come into existence out of nothing uncaused by anything, then why would we not expect a purple elephant to show up in our driveway out of nothing? That would seem to be much easier to happen on a cosmic scale anyway. This is something you really need to think through – and I say this respectfully – because a-theists see the universe’s apparent randomness as a sign that God does not exist, but, in fact, I have shown you that the universe is not that random at all, and that if it was, it would be crazy with stuff popping into existence uncaused out of nothing all the time. Life would be arguably impossible in such a universe.

            “One (old) theory about the expansion of the universe is that space-time expansion could create elementary particles due to the expansion.”

            Indeed – nothing wrong with that theory – I like it myself. But, that is NOT something coming into existence uncaused, as we have shown above. And, for space-time expansion to do the trick (kind of like QM fields do), space and time must already be in existence themselves: but we do not have that at the Big Bang. We have time, space, and matter all coming into existence out of nothing.

            “You can’t just make up crap and expect me to believe it.”

            The arguments I am giving you are not new at all – they are time tested and holding up beautifully. In fact, the more we come to know about our universe, the more Kalam looks like a winner. Consider this: 150 years ago, most scientists were certain that the universe was past eternal, and Christians were walking around saying “Whoa, but my Book say otherwise. What now?!?” But, over the last century and a half, the evidence has overwhelmingly shown that the universe had a beginning. So, if anything, the theist is on MUCH more solid ground now than he was back then. In fact, it was that observation that led to this quote, by an unbeliever:

            “For the scientist who has lived by his faith in the power of reason, the story ends like a bad dream. He has scaled the
            mountains of ignorance, he is about to conquer the highest peak; as he pulls himself over the final rock, he is greeted by a band of theologians who have been sitting there for centuries.”
            ― Robert Jastrow, God and the Astronomers

            Here is a “new” proof – this makes 4 – that came along in the last quarter century (relatively recently in the cosmic sense):

            1. There exists at least one unconditioned reality.

            2. Unconditioned reality itself is the simplest possible reality.

            3. Unconditioned reality is absolutely unique.

            4. Unconditioned reality is unrestricted.

            5. The one Unconditioned Reality is the continuous Creator of all that is.

            This is a brilliant and powerful proof for a God Who grounds all of reality – not just matter. It is one that current philosophers are engaging with, and it really cuts to the heart of the a-theist who feels as though he is on unsteady ground, as all a-theists must at some point wonder. Is everything relative or is there something which grounds all types of reality – natural, supernatural, body, mind, time, morality, space, etc? The proof is just beautiful, but not trivial – someone who likes computer programs or logic would enjoy it.

            Besides, even if I WAS making up cr&p (which I truly am not and would not), what would be morally wrong with that, under a-theism? I think you affirmed Premise 2 again. Sorry, could not resist. 🙂

            Finally, I see you did not reply to Premise 1 of the Fine-Tuning Argument. That is becoming quite a powerful argument, even in the agnostic community. In fact, it was a pretty strong secular humanist, Roger Penrose, who really nailed down Premise 2 (the chance part) in that argument, and effectively proved it – way beyond the realm of mathematical impossibility anyway. That is a name that every a-theist and Christian should know – a totally brilliant man. The other names every person should know are the agnostics Borde, Guth, and Vilenkin, of the brilliant BGV Theorem.

            Nice engaging with you today, Rebus, and God bless!

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Who says it is?

            The OK court.

            If God exists

            Wake me when you have a shred of evidence.

            Since I have given you proofs for God’s existence

            No, you haven’t. You’ve given me a bunch of nonsense. You might believe it, but I certainly don’t.

            Not at all – in fact your point that the Ten Commandments were one basis for our laws

            Stop lying about what my points have been. I haven’t claimed that.

            What is wrong with Christians pushing their religion, under a-theism?

            They are attempting to push their religion by misusing my government. Did you read the court decision?

            Also, you used the word “dishonest” in an objective sense in your quote above – thank you! Therefore, you have affirmed Premise 2 (or Conclusion 1, take your pick) of the Moral Argument for the Existence of God

            Nope, “dishonest” doesn’t require objective morals.

            “All it takes for me to not be a theist is to not believe in any gods.”

            Simply not true.

            No, it really is true.

            Here is the definition from the Stanford University Encyclopedia of Philosophy:

            “‘Atheism’ means the negation of theism, the denial of the existence of God.”

            Sorry, that’s a terribly slanted definition — by capitalizing “God”, it’s clearly assuming a particular god, otherwise it would use the term “gods”.

            We want to know if God exists, and you have said that it is not rational to believe in God, but I have provided you with plenty of evidence to the contrary.

            No, you have provided me with nonsensical arguments that make plenty of assumptions that I don’t grant.

            “Like I pointed out, you have yet to provide proof for your premise 1.”

            I already did – here it is again, I gave you 7 billion and 3 pieces of evidence in support of Premise 1.

            No, you haven’t. You’ve made assertions that I don’t grant.

            “Morals are opinions — they are subjective.”

            Not when you talked (erroneously) about me being dishonest above.

            No, really, it’s my opinion that you’re dishonest. That doesn’t require objective morals.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Wake me when you have a shred of evidence.”

            I have given you MORE than a shred of evidence for the God Hypothesis, but you do not like it, because you are afraid of science, math, logic, and philosophy. Moreover, you have provided no evidence for the No God Hypothesis, instead whining “I lack belief, I lack belief.” Don’t blame ME for YOUR childishness.

            “No, you haven’t. You’ve given me a bunch of nonsense. You might believe it, but I certainly don’t.”

            The fact that you can’t understand what I present does not make it “nonsense,” it is just a measure of your intellectual abilities. “Whine, whine, whine. ” Somehow that does not count as refutation, except in the blind faith of the New A-theists. 🙂

            “They are attempting to push their religion by misusing my government.”

            Why is that a moral problem under a-theism? God does not exist in your world, so morals are just ice cream flavors. You even admitted that when you said there were no objective moral values.

            “Nope, “dishonest” doesn’t require objective morals.”

            Sure it does! Objective dishonesty is objective, Silly. Unless you are talking about ice cream flavors again (relative morality) in which case you don’t get to make a big deal about it: I like chocolate, you like vanilla, I like Ten Commandments on government property, you don’t – nothing but ice cream flavors in your a-theistic world – why is that such a big deal to you if it is just an ice cream flavor? 🙂

            “Sorry, that’s a terribly slanted definition — by capitalizing “God”, it’s clearly assuming a particular god, otherwise it would use the term “gods”.”

            What particular God is it assuming?!? 🙂 The One you don’t believe in, but hate nevertheless? 🙂 That is really your best reply to an objective definition which refutes your kindergarten a-theism? 🙂

            “No, you have provided me with nonsensical arguments that make plenty of assumptions that I don’t grant.”

            Yes, but you don’t “grant” them in the same way that a petulant child does not “grant” that he must pick up his toys. You also cannot refute them. 🙂

            “No, you haven’t. You’ve made assertions that I don’t grant.”

            More childishness! You mean 7 billion human beings all coming into existence is not good enough data for you?!? 🙂

            “No, really, it’s my opinion that you’re dishonest. That doesn’t require objective morals.”

            False. It is “your opinion” that I am OBJECTIVELY dishonest. Unless you are talking about ice cream flavors again, and, if so, then why complain? 🙂 That is the problem with a-theism: when you deny objective moral values and duties, you give up your right to objectively criticize the behavior of others, including Christians, your favorite target. We just enjoy a different ice cream flavor than you do. Sucks to be an a-theist, huh? 🙂 I do remember those days well.

            So, in summary, I have provided the Kalam, Moral, Fine-Tuning, and Unconditioned Reality Arguments for the Existence of God, and, in reply, I have received nothing much more than “I lack belief, I lack belief!” It does look like theism is the more rational place to be today, no? Keep searching, Rebus, and God bless!

          • Rebus Caneebus

            I have given you MORE than a shred of evidence for the God Hypothesis

            All of it handwaving nonsense. I’m not gullible like you are.

            Moreover, you have provided no evidence for the No God Hypothesis, instead whining “I lack belief, I lack belief.” Don’t blame ME for YOUR childishness.

            I’m not “whining”, I’m telling you my opinion. You’re the one dishonestly trying to tell me what I’m supposed to believe.

            The fact that you can’t understand what I present does not make it “nonsense,”

            No, it really is nonsense. You can’t even understand that morals are subjective.

            “They are attempting to push their religion by misusing my government.”

            Why is that a moral problem under a-theism?

            I’ve already stated it’s a LEGAL problem, but you apparently can’t read. I would also call it a moral problem, but since you can’t understand the concept of subjective morals, your brain locks up.

            “Sorry, that’s a terribly slanted definition — by capitalizing “God”, it’s clearly assuming a particular god, otherwise it would use the term “gods”.”

            What particular God is it assuming?!? 🙂

            You would have to ask the person who came up with such a bad definition, but I’d suspect the Abrahamic god.

            “Nope, “dishonest” doesn’t require objective morals.”

            Sure it does! Objective dishonesty is objective

            Wow, you can’t understand anything.

            I said it was dishonest, not objectively dishonest. But you can’t help adding “objective” to morals because your god-addled brain can’t conceive of any other kind.

            “No, you have provided me with nonsensical arguments that make plenty of assumptions that I don’t grant.”

            Yes, but you don’t “grant” them in the same way that a petulant child does not “grant” that he must pick up his toys.

            Wrong. You’re just another Christian who has no arguments, so you stamp your little feet and insist I somehow have to accept your assumptions. It doesn’t work that way.

            “No, really, it’s my opinion that you’re dishonest. That doesn’t require objective morals.”

            False. It is “your opinion” that I am OBJECTIVELY dishonest.

            No, It’s my opinion that you are dishonest. You keep trying to dishonestly add words to my claims.

            So, in summary, I have provided the Kalam, Moral, Fine-Tuning, and Unconditioned Reality Arguments for the Existence of God

            Which are all crappy arguments.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            No reply to Kalam, Moral, Fine-Tuning, and Unconditioned Reality Arguments except for adjectives – got it. 🙂

          • Rebus Caneebus

            No reply to Kalam, Moral, Fine-Tuning, and Unconditioned Reality Arguments except for adjectives

            And my previous objections. I notice you completely ignored all my other statements about your dishonesty. Not surprising.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            As you walk up the steps to the building which houses the U.S. Supreme Court you can see near the top of the building a row of the world’s law givers and each one is facing one in the middle who is facing forward with a full frontal view

            Nope — Moses AND Confucius are facing forward, and Solon isn’t looking straight ahead, but he isn’t looking at Moses, either.

            Fail. You didn’t even BOTHER to look at a photo of it, you just copy/pasted from elsewhere.

            Snopes goes into detail how wrong it is. Just search for the text you cribbed.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Proves my point – the very reason for the display – thank you! You do believe in freedom OF religion, not merely freedom FROM religion, right? 🙂

            Ok guys! Hes fine with Baphomet! Bring her up!

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Objective evil doesn’t exist. False premise.

            The phrase “begins to exist” requires time to be relevant. Inside the Big Bang singularity, time reaches infinity due to to infinite gravity, so you can not point to the “beginning” only to the point where we can first perceive the universe. You need more information to make this premise.

            Having a cause (the universe) does not mean that God or any eternal being of any kind caused it. If it has a cause, then you look for that cause, you do not plug in “because God” if you do not know. Likely we will find something else that seems to have a beginning, and God will be pushed back again and redefined again, and apologized for again.

          • markinator

            The really silly part is that if your god is indeed the only one, then why is it so concerned that about the “strange gods before me”? Honor thy father and mother. Sure, that’s proper, but how about this one: Try not to rape any women. And stay away from murder.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            What is wrong with God not wanting us to worship false idols or honoring our father and mother? Did you have a poor childhood growing up that you hate your parents so? What is wrong about prohibitions against rape and murder? I realize that 97% of a-theists are for murdering babies in the womb, but beside that.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Please cite ridiculous stat.

            I cite one that opposes yours from a CHRISTIAN PUBLICATION.

            “According to a study by the Guttmacher Institute, “Almost three-quarters of women obtaining abortions in 2008 reported a religious affiliation. The largest proportion were Protestant (37 percent), and most of the rest said that they were Catholic (28 percent) or that they had no religious affiliation (27 percent). One in five abortion patients identified themselves as born-again, evangelical, charismatic or fundamentalist; 75 percent of these were Protestant.”

            http://www.charismanews .com/opinion/40519-why-do-so-many-churchgoers-have-abortions

            I’m assuming that Jews, Muslims, Mormons etc. were under the non-religious grouping….

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Again, you are confusing moral belief with moral sociology. In terms of belief, 97% of a-theists believe that abortion is a moral “right.” Christianity has long held, since its earliest days, that abortion is highly immoral and murder. If there is an A-theist Creed – and I have composed one – then the “right” to kill a human in the womb would just about have to be a part of it. it flows naturally from a-theism and it is supported by an overwhelming, but not all, number of a-theists.

            The fact that some Christians behave as a-theists believe and some a-theists behave as Christians believe (when they borrow objective moral values and duties from God) bears no warrant on the objective belief system involved, especially since many self-professed “Christians” aren’t, and this would be true for a-theists too:

            http://www .science20. com/writer_on_the_edge/blog/scientists_discover_that_atheists_might_not_exist_and_thats_not_a_joke-139982

            Excerpt:

            “This line of thought has led to some scientists claiming that “atheism is psychologically impossible because of the way humans think,” says Graham Lawton, an avowed atheist himself, writing in the New Scientist. “They point to studies showing, for example, that even people who claim to be committed atheists tacitly hold religious beliefs, such as the existence of an immortal soul.””

            “Scientists have discovered that “invisible friends” are not something reserved for children. We all have them, and encounter them often in the form of interior monologues. As we experience events, we mentally tell a non-present listener about it.”

            “These findings may go a long way to explaining a series of puzzles in recent social science studies. In the United States, 38% of people who identified themselves as atheist or agnostic went on to claim to believe in a God or a Higher Power (Pew Forum, “Religion and the Unaffiliated”, 2012).

            While the UK is often defined as an irreligious place, a recent survey by Theos, a think tank, found that very few people—only 13 per cent of adults—agreed with the statement “humans are purely material beings with no spiritual element”. For the vast majority of us, unseen realities are very present.”

            Keep in mind that this article is favorable toward a macro-evolutionary view.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Besides the ones that have nothing to do with morality and everything to do with servitude and worship?

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            There you go, getting all presuppositional on me again. 🙂 On Christian theism, servitude to our Creator and worship of Him are HIGHLY moral – in fact the highest calling (Greatest Commandment) according to Jesus. It should be obvious, even to an a-theist, as to why this is so: we do not exist, nor continue to exist, without a Creator Who is also a Sustainer.

            And, what is morally wrong, in an objective sense, with these two things under a-theism – since you are a subjective moralist? 🙂 We are just dancing to different DNA, enjoying a different flavor of ice cream. You don’t object to the way we dance or the flavor if ice cream we choose, do you? 🙂

          • markinator

            If your god is real, then why did it ask Moses for 35 virgins? it’s right there in the bible. If your god knows all, then it also knows that it’s a cruel construct of human thinking.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Where in Christian orthodoxy and orthopraxy does it say anything about virgins?!? Just show me the statements of faith for the 3 branches of Christianity – Protestant, Catholic, and Eastern Orthodox – and associated Christian practical or doctrinal documents that say anything about 35 virgins. Give me some creeds to support your nonsense. Then, I will believe you.

            In addition, provide me with all of the evidence that shows you have been trolling Orthodox Judaism websites and putting these same questions forward to them. 🙂 Otherwise, I will have to assume that you are just another anti-Christian with silly strawman sayings.

          • All In

            > What a weak god you have.

            I say confidently that your opinion will change the moment you meet him.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Just as yours will when you meet Odin.

          • All In

            In case you didn’t know, Paul, Odin isn’t real. He’s a fictional character. Unless you can prove Odin is real. Can you?

          • Jim H

            Can you prove Yahweh is real?

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Who’s Paul
            Why should I prove Odin is real? You haven’t bothered proving your god is real.

          • markinator

            And that would also apply to your negative opinion of people who simply don’t share your silly religion.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Which God was it again? Quakers? Puritans? Anglicans? The various denominations where too busy killing each other than trying to build a “Christian” nation.

            Jefferson once wrote, “But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg.”

            When you advance your religion in an offensive way (trying to insert it within the government) as opposed to just believing and keeping to yourself, you are bound to have opposition to that movement.

          • Lark62

            Put all the symbols you want on private property.

          • markinator

            Sure, and the christians who threaten us with not accepting christ are no better. I really doubt that this tactic scores any points with your imaginary god.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            You and your Muggle friends will get what they have coming to them once Voldemort comes.

            What? Why aren’t you scared?

          • LadyFreeBird<In God I Trust

            amen

          • Ambulance Chaser

            That’s all we ask.

          • markinator

            Oh, your smug attitude will surely score points with your god, and you’ll get special attention in heaven. What you don’t begin to understand is how those christian symbols came to be located on public property. Those were put into place with total disregard to people of differing beliefs. To put it bluntly, when The Satanic Temple wants to install a monument on the grounds of your statehouse, what do you suppose the reaction will be? The problem is exclusively christian myopia, and how they somehow think public spaces are meant for their religious delusions to be displayed.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            So when you look at nothing you think that it is a message that God doesn’t exist? Do you know what that would mean?

            You are scared of Atheism, critical thinking and rational thought.

            We’ll stick to bumper stickers and billboards thank you. We don’t need the government to do our dirty work for us. We only need the government to provide the fair playing field. Only those that believe they are at a disadvantage would strive to “cheat” the system to get an advantage.

          • markinator

            Every christian symbol seems to be a crucifix, demonstrating their fetish for torture. But when we remove a christian monument and replace it with “atheism”, precisely what does that monument look like?

    • Peter Leh

      naw. that is just from those who make a living off of scaring us.

  • Gwen Whittington

    Once again the liberals whine and everyone goes to grab a kleenex and wipe their runny noses. If they practiced as much tolerance as they demand this would not be an issue at all. The intolerant demanding tolerance, it would be funny if it wasn’t so sad.

    • Doug Indeap

      When the government violates the Constitution by promoting religion, the proper response is “tolerance”?

      • http://textsincontext.wordpress.com Michael Snow

        It is no violation of the Constitution.

        • SpeakTruth

          It is indeed a violation of the OK state constitution.

        • Doug Indeap

          You speak as if your mere say so, without even decorative explanation, means more than diddly.

    • markinator

      Well then if you’re the epitome of tolerance, contact the Oklahoma governor and support the statue of Baphomet being put into place. Where was the tolerance of other religions when the commandments monument was conceived? Did they do a poll, or just assume everyone would genuflect?

      • Gwen Whittington

        I don’t have to support what I don’t believe in. The monument was placed as a reminder of the basis for the laws that were written into our constitution and also the Bill or Rights. The intolerance of the minority is amazing. The separation of church and state is simply stating that the government has no right to establish a state run religion, it does not deny any religion the right to practice what they believe or state it publicly. Now that officials are calling for texts of sermons for review and denying the right of any religion to practice their standards it is the government that is breaking their own law. Now a days that seems to be acceptable with a dictator-in-chief muslem in office.

        • SpeakTruth

          No one is being denied any right to practice what they believe or state it publicly. Christians are merely required to follow the same rules and regulations and laws as everyone else. Christians also have the same rights and privileges as everyone else.
          What is seems Christian are worried and upset about is that as business owners of a for-profit business open to the general public, they are not allowed to refuse service to those in which they disagree, while other business owners must follow anti-discrimination policies. And as Christians, their religious beliefs about homosexuality being sinful is enough to ban gay couples from legal rights and protections by not allowing them to marry. And as Christians, they want the President to only acknowledge their own religion and get twisted about if he celebrates an historical civil rights victory. Christians want their religious symbols and displays to be allowed on government grounds, but call others whiners when others want their religious displays on government grounds as well.

          • Gwen Whittington

            I know you will not understand the difference since you are not a Christian but to bake a cake or provide photographs for a gay wedding is condoning the act, accepting. We are not to do that. To discriminate due to race or religion is different and not allowed. Now if someone wanted an Isis cake and I was a baker I’d say no, that would be condoning the violence they represent. It would be my right to refuse. Like I said before, if someone doesn’t want your or my business go on down the street and spend the money elsewhere. The law suits are not necessary. I didn’t call anyone a whinner because they wanted a religious display on government grounds. If they were there and I didn’t agree I simply would walk past it. Life is easy, people complicate it.

          • SpeakTruth

            You are right in that I do not understand. And I absolutely disagree with you that selling a product or service that you have advertised to someone is condoning any behavior. There are a couple of big problems with refusing to provide a wedding cake to a gay couple. One is that gay people are the only people in whose “sin” you cannot condone by selling a cake. No Christian baker has been sued because they refused service to anyone else because of their “sin”. Cakes are provided for baby showers for unwed mothers. Anniversary cakes are provided to couples who are not married, yet celebrate the anniversary of their first date. Why are gay people the only “unrepentant sinners” denied service? They are not asking for a special kind of “gay cake”. They are asking for a wedding cake. There isn’t even writing on most wedding cakes. There is nothing offensive about the wedding cake itself. The second problem is that all people assume they will be served when entering a business establishment, (barring the obvious exceptions). There is no way to prevent the feelings of degradation of being told they will not be served because the owner thinks their relationship is a perversion (perhaps in front of other customers and employees). Christians do not have signs on the doors of their businesses stating that gay couples will not be served. That, to me, would be preferable than assuming the business would treat you with courtesy and welcome your business only to be degraded and insulted after entering.
            And with all due respect, I don’t think you appreciate how degrading and discriminatory it is to be denied service at a business that welcomes everyone else. Can a restaurant owner refuse to serve fat people because he disagrees with their unhealthy lifestyle and doesn’t want to condone it?

            And if it were just one display, most of us would roll our eyes and keep going. However, Christians continue to cross the legal line by teachers passing out bibles to their students, passing legislation limiting rights of others, or county clerks refusing to follow the law, or businesses refusing to serve others.
            Life can be easy and pleasant if…

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Ok. So since you, under your religious belief, are not to discriminate based on ethnicity, can you explain why you are allowed to release Hebrew slaves after six years where other ethnic groups become permanent property?

            You can not say your religion does not discriminate. It is a perfect example of what discrimination and bigotry is.

          • Gwen Whittington

            There are people who, like all good atheist, take the Bible, pick a verse and take it completely out of context. Slavery is a wrong that has gone on for centuries. Some people feel they have the right to control another’s thoughts and actions. Much like the government that is being established under OBama at this moment. The Christians were not the only people who owned slaves and fought to have them released. Look at the world now. How much outcry do you see concerning the Muslem terrorists taking slaves while we sit safe in our homes. Not only taking slaves but torturing and murdering. What does past slavery have to do with this? The only people who are slaves in America now are those who have enslaved themselves to the government we have now.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Christian promoted it and no “taking it out of context” remarks are going to change what is said in the Bible.

            If you disagree, please denounce that section of the Bible right now. I guarantee you someone will chime in and tell you how un-Christian you are for denouncing even a PART of the Bible and it wont even be me. lol

            You are right. Christianity is not the only religion to take slaves, but they are hypocrites if they refuse to admit it is in their Bible. Westboro is an atrocity, but they are following the Bible more closely than most Christians I know. You can complain about Muslims, and I’ll agree that their atrocities are horrible, but don’t point fingers till your own skeletons are taken care of.

          • Gwen Whittington

            Once again. The Jewish slaves were those who were taken in battle, those who owed money and those who sold themselves due to dire circumstances. In each instance the slaves or their families were able to redeem them by paying the debt owed at any time and in 7 years (year of jubilee) the slaves were given their freedom with enough goods and property to start a new life. So far as Westboro is concerned, that is another Jim Jones like cult who’s leader has taken the name of God and set himself above the word of God. So far as slavery in America: the first slave owner in America was black. The slaves brought over were mostly captured and sold by African’s and Muslems. The slave owners here, like so many atheists, picked and chose which verses of
            God’s word they would use to justify themselves. I will never denounce any part of God’s word. He is my creator and my Father in heaven.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Ooooh. Ok. Guess that made it good and moral then. Thanks for clarifying it for me. Also, its too bad that those that weren’t Jewish weren’t offered such “hospitable” terms. Of course, the slave owners wouldn’t want such valuable slaves to get away so easily even if they were Jewish, so of course they would supply them with a wife to bear him children, and hold them hostage so the slave would be forced to choose to stay. But of course, I am just taking it “out of context” despite it being in three different books of the Bible.

            Thank you for clarifying the context for me so I can see how good and moral the teachings of the Bible are. (This is *sarcastic* for the more dense).

            Unlike most Christians, I have read the entire Bible. There really isn’t a context where any of that crap can be considered “good” outside of assuming that your imaginary God said it so it is defined as good, which means you condone the behavior. If you condone such behavior you are a good Christian that is against what it means to be free in the US. If you do not condone such behavior you are not a very good Christian.

            Since you have said you would not denounce any part of the Bible, then you clearly are pro slavery, because based on your version of the Bible, the Christians living in the US should have the right to take Iraqi slaves from our previous war against Saddam.

            To me it appears you are doing what you claim just about every other Christian does. You know something is not morally right DESPITE what it says in the Bible, so you stretch the meaning so thin that somehow you can squint and somehow come to the conclusion that it SOMEHOW is moral and just liberating your god from moral blame (as well as yourself).

            Care to elaborate on how your precious “objective” morals relate to this and in what context slavery is ok? If the message was out of context in the Bible or changed, please elaborate on where it changed as well how it got around Jesus claiming he was not here to change the Mosaic law.

    • Unrepentant Atheist

      You mean like in the 50’s that you whined that “God” wasn’t in the Pledge of Allegiance? Hypocritical.

  • Nidalap

    Well, our government IS taking ever more anti-Christian stances on society. It makes sense that the enemies of a religion would want its symbols removed wherever they could…

  • WorldGoneCrazy

    I had to laugh when I read that this apostate “pastor” was with “Mainstream Oklahoma Baptists.” I guess that he missed the part about being in the world but not of it. (John 17:14-19)

    “Prescott applauded the outcome following its announcement.

    “I think what the judges realize is when the Constitution was framed, the people of Oklahoma were very strong in their affirmation of separation of church and state,” he told Tulsa World. “They did not want government and religion mixed.”

    So, this is a “pastor” who takes his marching orders from the Constitution and NOT the Bible. Furthermore, he does not think that government and religion should be mixed, but strange how such a sentiment does NOT apply to his liberal theology which he freely pushes. He needs to just admit, if he even realizes it, that all laws are a legislation of morality – it’s just a question of whose morality gets legislated.

    • Phipps Mike

      “he does not think that government and religion should be mixed,”
      they SHOULDN’T be. Freedom of religion includes Buddhism, Islamic. etc…. Therefore you cant make laws from religion because if you did, some laws would be exclusive to certain religions making it unfair to the non believers of that particular religion.

      • WorldGoneCrazy

        You do not seem to comprehend that almost all laws legislate morality, and thus will come into conflict with some religion, making them “exclusive to certain religions,” including the No God religion, a-theism.

        • markinator

          Yeah, like a parking ticket law legislates morality. Atheism is a religion just like bald is a hair color. And i heard that OFF is a television station. If you don’t subscribe to an atheistic mindset, why do you think you can comment on something as serious as their lack of your faith?

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Yeah, like a parking ticket law legislates morality.”

            Are you saying that laws against illegal parking are not saying that there is something morally wrong with illegal parking? Of course there is. That is a moral legislation. How many tickets do you have? 🙂

            “If you don’t subscribe to an atheistic mindset, why do you think you can comment on something as serious as their lack of your faith?”

            I am a former a-theist: I know full well the blind faith of a-theism. A-theism is NOT a “lack of belief in God,” but the belief that “there is no God.” “Lack of belief” is nothing more than the state of the psychological condition of the a-theist. An a-theist could lack belief in God even though God exists, in the same way that a person could lack belief in the Apollo Lunar Landings even though they happened. By such a strange definition as “lack of belief,” both a-theism and theism could be true at the same time!

          • John Hitchhiker

            So how exactly Did you go Crazy?

          • John Hitchhiker

            Indeed, “An a-theist could lack belief in God even though God exists, ” just like a theist can believe in God while it doesn’t exist. And I think he just meant “a lack of belief in something being out there” since belief/faith is usually paired with Deities. How did you suddenly become religious though?

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “And I think he just meant “a lack of belief in something being out there” since belief/faith is usually paired with Deities.”

            Not true! We believe in what we think is true – everyone does. Theism is making the claim that God exists and a-theism is making the claim that God does not exist. Only in kindergarten a-theism, not intellectual philosophical a-theism, is the definition of a-theism the “lack of belief in a God.”

            Think about it, John: if a-theism is the lack of belief in God, then a-theism could be true at the same time that theism is true, i.e., when God exists! That is an absurd way in which to go about seeking truth! The reason that the a-theist defines it in such a kindergarten manner is to avoid all burden of proof that he shares in establishing the No God Hypothesis. So, the a-theist can just sit back and act like a 5 year old: “You theists are irrational in believing in a invisible Person,” then when evidence is presented for the existence of this Person, the a-theist just sits back and whines “I lack belief, I lack belief!” It is really quite a childish way to go about (not) seeking truth. It is the intellectual equivalence of sticking one’s head into the sand.

            “How did you suddenly become religious though?”

            Wouldn’t call it sudden, but it IS nice of you to finally act like an adult rather than just firing off your silly ad hominems and then deleting your postings as you have done several times before this one, so that they still end up in my email but for which I have no place to reply to them here. Nevertheless, I forgive you – it’s required of me. 🙂

            In answer to your question, I just followed the evidence where it led. I have 4 technical degrees, but I never had used them to engage with the more fundamental questions that everyone asks in life. So, I started engaging with them. Things like Kalam, the Moral Argument, Fine-Tuning, etc all make excellent sense in the context of the scientific findings the past 150 years, and we all have an intuitive understanding of these arguments, even when not formally presented. In addition, it is clear that, under a-theism, there are no ultimate purposes, meanings, or moral values and duties in a universe that will experience a long cold dark death, forming the basis for Premise 1 of the Moral Argument.

            It also became very clear to me that the a-theist, myself included, had a tremendous blind faith that:

            1. The universe miraculously popped into existence out of nothing uncaused by anything.
            2. That life magically sprang forth from non-life when lightning hit some mud.
            3. That minds and moral evolved from molecules through monkeys.

            So, in a nutshell, I traded my blind faith a-theism for a rational evidence-based theism.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            That is not governed by Atheism. Atheists come to that conclusion for many reasons. Mine happens to be lack of evidence for a god, and I believe many share that same conclusion.

            However, some believe there is no God because the fail to see “his” touch on the Earth, or looks at the major calamities we have dealt with and find there is no way a “God” could have done this. That would be more a belief.

            When it is a conclusion based on evidence or lack thereof, then it is NOT a belief, it is a conclusion to a hypothesis and thus is subject to change once more information is provided.

            Seeing the evidence or lack thereof, and the believing anyways outside of the logical conclusion is faith.

            Atheism and theism is ONLY the answer to the question, “Does a god or gods exist?”. A atheist comes to the conclusion that they do not. A theist comes to the conclusion that there is. Religion further defines WHAT god or gods exist and defines the being and the teachings that goes with it. A deist chooses not to define a god or gods, nor there teachings, yet chooses to believe in its existence.

            As you see, Atheism and Theism are opposites and answer only the one question. You now associate yourself with some denomination of Christianity. I associate myself with Humanistic values as well as Anti-Theist belief. Atheism is a poor choice to describe someones values outside of the question of the existence of god.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Mine happens to be lack of evidence for a god”

            I have provided you, elsewhere, with four proofs for the existence of God. I repeat 3 of them here, since you are denying that objective evil exists in another post:

            Kalam Cosmological Argument for the Existence of God:

            Premise 1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
            Premise 2. The universe began to exist.
            Conclusion: Therefore, the universe had a Cause.

            Fine-Tuning Argument for the Existence of God:

            Premise 1: The fine-tuning of the universe is due to either physical necessity, chance, or design.
            Premise 2: It is not due to physical necessity or chance.
            Conclusion: Therefore, it is due to design.

            Argument from Unconditioned Reality (not a syllogism but a
            step-wise proof):

            1. There exists at least one unconditioned reality.
            2. Unconditioned reality itself is the simplest possible reality.
            3. Unconditioned reality itself is absolutely unique.
            4. Unconditioned reality itself is unrestricted.
            5. The one Unconditioned Reality is the continuous Creator of all else that is.

            “When it is a conclusion based on evidence or lack thereof, then it is NOT a belief, it is a conclusion to a hypothesis and thus is subject to change once more information is provided.”

            Indeed! You owe us some evidence for the No God Hypothesis – thank you for pointing this out. You share a burden of proof here – you don’t get to just sit back like a child and whine “I lack belief!”

            “A atheist comes to the conclusion that they do not.”

            So, provide proof – if you are coming to a rational evidence-based conclusion and not a blind faith one. 🙂

            “You now associate yourself with some denomination of Christianity.”

            False. Not even sure how you could come to just a conclusion as that, but it is patently false. Since I have been a Christian, I have actually never associated with any denomination.

            “Atheism is a poor choice to describe someones values outside of the question of the existence of god.”

            NOT when a-theists agree to a huge extent on certain things, like there is no God and abortion is an objective “right.” There are essentials of a-theism, just like there are essentials of Christianity. There is an a-theist creed and Christian ones too (Nicene, etc), stated or unstated.

        • Phipps Mike

          you cannot legislate morality. Law is a science, not an emotion. The courtroom tosses out THOUSANDS of cases a day involving plaintiffs that sue over “morality”.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “you cannot legislate morality”

            Phipps Mike, why are you falling for such pithy, but erroneous, sayings today? Of course, morality is legislated – every day! Laws against murder, rape, burglary, even illegal parking are a legislation of morality. (Are you actually saying that these should not be laws?!?) The question is whose morality gets legislated?

          • Phipps Mike


            It’s one of the perennial debates in America, especially when we’re
            faced with socially divisive issues: Can you legislate morality?

            If we mean by that question, “Can you make people moral through
            laws?” the answer is plainly no. If we mean, “Are laws put in place to
            govern people’s moral behavior?” the answer is plainly yes.”

            http: //townhall . com/columnists/michaelbrown/2012/06/19/you_can_not_legislate_morality/page/full

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            So, it sounds like you want the laws against rape, murder, and burglary wiped off of the books?

          • Phipps Mike

            what?
            1. I detest anarchists
            2, I detest libertarians
            3. I detest ideas of privatizing the police forces.
            4. I detest vigilantes
            5. I detest anybody that doesn’t believe in 100% equality
            6. I detest anybody that condescends (that includes the self pious/righteous fundamentalists)
            Rape, murder, burglary. ALL are forms of condescension and ALL are against equality.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Great! Those laws represent legislation, an attempt to legislate morality. The fact that people will violate those laws is no argument against their legislation.

          • Phipps Mike

            we just went in full circle and you didnt even get what my point was to start with. Our laws here in the US only COINCIDED with Bibles morals. We did NOT get our laws FROM the Bible. We based it off a culture that pre-dated Christianity. therefore, the ten commandments gets NO CREDIT for our laws being created, THAT was my point.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Then, why are the Ten Commandments displayed in the SCOTUS? Are you now saying that our country was not founded on Judeo-Christian philosophy?

          • Phipps Mike

            we got our laws from the English who got it from the Anglo-Saxons whom got theirs from Germanic and Romans. Anglo Saxons law changed over the years after some turned to Christianity with their changing rulership. However, the main laws such as do not murder, steal etc…were made from Romans who are NOT Christians. So we actually owe our primary law to the Romans.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            No answer to 10 Commandments in SCOTUS – got it.

            “were made from Romans who are NOT Christians”

            Are you saying that Christians were for murder, theft, etc?

            “So we actually owe our primary law to the Romans.”

            Nope, we owe our primary law to God:

            “They show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts sometimes accusing them and at other times even defending them.” — Romans 2:15

          • Phipps Mike

            you can go by your book and I will go by historical fact that is conjoined with common sense. Do not murder, steal or rape is something a person doesn’t NEED to be taught. They KNOW inherently that it is wrong by the pain it causes. You act as if Christianity is the only religion allowed in America. WRONG. Freedom of Religion means freedom of WHAT religion. We came here to the US so that Protestants would no longer be persecuted by Catholics (fundamentalists).

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Do not murder, steal or rape is something a person doesn’t NEED to be taught.”

            Apparently, SOME people need to be taught these things: our prisons have plenty of murderers, robbers, and rapists.

            “They KNOW inherently that it is wrong by the pain it causes.”

            Apparently not, see above. 🙂 For the majority of people, this is what Romans 2:15 says – God wrote His law on their consciences. It makes a lot of sense given all of the proofs for God’s existence, and His necessary grounding of objective moral values and duties.

            “You act as if Christianity is the only religion allowed in America.”

            Where did I say that?!? Most of the Ten Commandments are accpetable to most religions in America, except to a-theists who do not wish to be accountable to any Higher Authority:

            “I want atheism to be true and am made uneasy by the fact that some of the most intelligent and well-informed people I know are religious believers. It isn’t just that I don’t believe in God and, naturally, hope that I’m right in my belief. It’s that I hope there is no God! I don’t want there to be a God; I don’t want the universe to be like that. My guess is that this cosmic
            authority problem is not a rare condition and that it is responsible for much of the scientism and reductionism of our time.” — Professor Thomas Nagel, NYU

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            “Apparently, SOME people need to be taught these things: our prisons have plenty of murderers, robbers, and rapists.”

            If you are only a Bible away from slaughtering people or robbing them, then I would say you lack empathy and are a risk to humanity regardless of your beliefs.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “If you are only a Bible away from slaughtering people or robbing them, then I would say you lack empathy and are a risk to humanity regardless of your beliefs.”

            You are confusing moral epistemology with moral sociology. Furthermore, I would prefer to be only a Bible away from slaughtering people than to have nothing at all between me and slaughtering people, as is the a-theist.

            In fact, 97% of a-theists ARE in favor of slaughtering people, so long as the slaughter takes place in the womb. 🙂 And, this makes perfect sense, because under a-theism, there are no grounds for objective moral values or duties – and the “pope” and “cardinals” of a-theism agree with me here:

            “In a universe of blind physical forces and genetic replication,
            some people are going to get hurt, other people are going to get lucky, and you won’t find any rhyme or reason in it, or any justice. The universe that we observe has precisely the properties we should expect if there is, at bottom, no design, no purpose, no evil and no good, nothing but blind, pitiless
            indifference… DNA neither knows nor cares. DNA just is. And we dance to its music.” (Richard Dawkins, River Out of
            Eden: A Darwinian View of Life (1995))

            “Let me summarize my views on what modern evolutionary biology tells us loud and clear — and these are basically Darwin’s views. There are no gods, no purposes, and no goal-directed forces of any kind. There is no life after death. When I die, I am absolutely certain that I am going to be dead. That’s the end of me. There is no ultimate foundation for ethics, no ultimate meaning in life, and no free will for humans, either.” A-theist William Provine

            “The position of the modern evolutionist is that humans have an awareness of morality because such an awareness of biological worth. Morality is a biological adaptation no less than are hands and feet and teeth. Considered as a rationally justifiable set of claims about an objective something, ethics is illusory. I appreciate when someone says, ‘Love thy neighbor as thyself,’ they think they are referring above and beyond
            themselves. Nevertheless, such reference is truly without foundation. Morality is just an aid to survival and reproduction, . . . and any deeper meaning is illusory.” (Michael Ruse, “Evolutionary Theory and Christian Ethics,” in The Darwinian Paradigm (London: Routledge, 1989), pp. 262-269).

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Great quotes. Not sure what they have to do with abortion or slaughtering people, but hey I see their point of view.

            You see, those people did not slaughter anyone. Neither do most Atheists. As a matter of fact there is a greater percentage of Christians locked up for violent crimes when compared to Atheists when compared to the size of their respective population base.

            So your Bible doesnt stop people from killing. As a matter of fact some attack abortion clinics in the name of their God.

            By the way, I know Atheists that are pro-life or pro-choice yet would not chose abortion for themselves. They just didn’t need a celestial boogie man to scare them into having those values. Atheists are a very diverse in their beliefs outside the question of whether God exists, so attempts at grouping them on various issues is like herding cats.

            The truth is I am fine without someone telling me that something is absolutely good or absolutely evil. I have 5 senses, reason, and empathy so I am equipped to make those decisions for myself.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Great quotes. Not sure what they have to do with abortion or slaughtering people, but hey I see their point of view.”

            Well, their point is that anything goes under a-theism. Seems to happen in the animal kingdom too. No cops pulling animals over for rape or anything. And, the abortion point is that the ontology in those quotes seems to carry out in their epistemiological belief system with respect to that lack of value of humans in the womb.

            “You see, those people did not slaughter anyone. Neither do most Atheists.”

            True, but that is sociology not ontology. The fact that a-theists can behave morally is not one bit surprising when they are assuming the existence of objective moral values which require the existence of a God who wrote the laws on our hearts – see Romans 2:15 for the explanatory power.

            “As a matter of fact there is a greater percentage of Christians locked up for violent crimes when compared to Atheists when compared to the size of their respective population base.”

            We have already been around on this: a-theists are more highly represented when you throw in the “no pref,” “other,” and “unknown,” – actually the “no pref” does it I think (from the Patheos article). Personally, I would include about half of the “Christians” too, since they are indistinguishable from the a-theist I once was. 🙂

            And, we do have evidence that conservative religious devote far more time, treasure, and talent to charitable causes than secular liberal:

            http://winteryknight .com/2014/10/14/statistics-on-whether-atheists-are-more-moral-than-religious-people/

            Excerpt:

            “The differences in charity between secular and religious people are dramatic. Religious people are 25 percentage points more likely than secularists to donate money (91 percent to 66 percent) and 23 points more likely to volunteer time (67 percent to 44 percent). And, consistent with the findings of other writers, these data show that practicing a religion is more important than the actual religion itself in predicting charitable behavior. For example, among those who attend worship services regularly, 92 percent of Protestants give charitably, compared with 91 percent of Catholics, 91 percent of Jews, and 89 percent from other religions.”

            “As a matter of fact some attack abortion clinics in the name of their God.”

            Indeed, sadly so. Our side HAS murdered 8 people, none of them innocent, but all lamentable. Meanwhile, the other side has murdered more than 58 million human beings in the womb – all innocent. So, thus far, we are outnumbered in the murder tally 58 million to 8.

            “They just didn’t need a celestial boogie man to scare them into having those values.”

            They actually DO need God – the One Who wrote the law on their hearts. (See Romans 2:15)

            “Atheists are a very diverse in their beliefs outside the question of whether God exists, so attempts at grouping them on various issues is like herding cats.”

            That is so true – I have tried to herd them too! 🙂 But, two things they believe in almost unanimously: there is no God, and abortion is good.

            “The truth is I am fine without someone telling me that something is absolutely good or absolutely evil.”

            Excellent! If it is OK, I am going to substitute “objective” for “absolute” below, OK? It is a little bit clearer:

            Moral Argument for the Existence of God:

            Premise 1: If there is no God, then objective moral values do not exist.
            Premise 2: Objective evil exists.
            Conclusion 1: Therefore, objective moral values DO exist.
            Conclusion 2: Therefore, God exists.

            Happy 4th, BTW!

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Hope you had a great 4th yourself.

            There is no objective good nor evil. Some values come close as to almost have a 100% of people claim it is wrong, but if you take mainstream values such as murder, you will find people that will backtrack and then admit that there are times that killing another person is necessary (protect their family and children, to save another life, etc.).

            The concept of “God writing values on our heart” has been proven wrong every time there is a disagreement with someone based on morality. If God did it, we would all hold the same values dear, and that is very very far from the truth. Your presumed abortion facts would point that there is indeed a discrepancy when it comes to abortion with valuing life. Get 100 people to tell you what their thoughts were on the Terri Schiavo controversy (or any other major moral dilemma). You’ll probably get a wide range of answers.

            You have tied all abortions to Atheists. Are you sure that there wasn’t at least 1 or maybe 2 Christians getting abortions? Here is and article about it.

            http://www.charismanews .com/opinion/40519-why-do-so-many-churchgoers-have-abortions

            Excerpt: According to a study by the Guttmacher Institute, “Almost three-quarters of women obtaining abortions in 2008 reported a religious affiliation. The largest proportion were Protestant (37 percent), and most of the rest said that they were Catholic (28 percent) or that they had no religious affiliation (27 percent). One in five abortion patients identified themselves as born-again, evangelical, charismatic or fundamentalist; 75 percent of these were Protestant.”

            Note: Numbers add up to 92%, which would give a fairly wide margin of error, but not enough to change the religious majority. Also, it appears that Muslim, Mormon, Jews, and other religions were not represented (Only 8% with no margin of error? Unlikely), or included with the “non-religious”. This from a Christian publication.

            Your premise 1 and 2 contradict one another, and thus is a flawed argument. Should God not exist, objective morality does not exist. Since objective morality does not exist, then objective evil does not exist, and thus the mental exercise ends.

            Since I believe morality is subjective and NOT objective, why would I assume there was some sort of objective evil?

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “There is no objective good nor evil. ”

            Great! So, based on that, you are not allowed to objectively condemn slavery or Jew gassing. Nor may you call Christians or our God objectively evil. If someone mis-treats you or your family, then they are merely “dancing to their DNA,” as Dawkins puts it, and you may not objectively condemn them. Morals are just ice cream flavors in your world. Some people like to go into elementary schools and read to children (vanilla), others like to go into them and massacre children (chocolate). We shall see how long you go before you assert an objective moral claim – one or two posts max is my prediction. 🙂

            “If God did it, we would all hold the same values dear, and that is very very far from the truth.”

            False, if man has free will and the desire to sin (behave badly).

            “Your presumed abortion facts”

            Well, that is just Human Biology 101. You are free to deny it, but please do not pretend that your side is the “science-y” one.

            “Get 100 people to tell you what their thoughts were on the Terri Schiavo”

            That is not an abortion example. Furthermore, truth and morality are not determined by polls – but by facts. Abortion kills a human being – every time (except in the exceptionally rare cases where a baby survives the attempt, and even then, most of those babies are left to die untreated in a sink or toilet).

            “You have tied all abortions to Atheists.”

            Nope, nice try: you are confusing belief with sociology. The beliefs of a-theists are almost uniformly in favor of abortion. The Christian belief has been consistently against abortion from Day 1. The fact that Christians sometimes behave like a-theists believe, and vice versa, bears no warrant on the validity of the belief system itself.

            “Since I believe morality is subjective and NOT objective, why would I assume there was some sort of objective evil?”

            I agree that, if you deny Premise 2, then the Moral Argument does not apply to you. I just don’t believe you can live it out. And doesn’t it creep you out in the least that you cannot objectively condemn what Hitler did to the Jews? He was just “dancing to his DNA,” under your view, and his flavor of ice cream (Jew gassing) is merely different, but not morally worse (in any objective sense) from anyone else’s, including yours. If someone murders a loved one of yours, God forbid, you cannot call for any sort of objective justice. Scary place to be, but we will see if you can live it out in your future posts. One a-theist I debated last week switched from subjective to objective and back and forth in the SAME post. 🙂 That is the usual pattern.

            OK, have I given you any other arguments for the existence of God? Here is one:

            Kalam Cosmological Argument for the Existence of God:

            Premise 1. Whatever begins to exist has a cause.
            Premise 2. The universe began to exist.
            Conclusion: Therefore, the universe had a Cause.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            And I can’t subjectively condemn it?

            Just because it is subjective, does not mean I can not have a strong held moral compass that objects to mass murder, torture and slavery.

            Free will is a subject unto itself, but leave it to say if a god does anything to influence our emotions, thinking, or perception then he has interfered with free will.

            Also my example was about valuing life, which does relate to abortion, however the main topic is morality and whether or not Christians have some monopoly on it (which they don’t).

            Your statement “And doesn’t it creep you out in the least that you cannot objectively condemn what Hitler did to the Jews?” is fallcy. Just because the majority of the world comes to the conclusion that his actions are horrendous, doesn’t mean it is objective. It means that millions of people agree on a subjective value. If it were objective then there would be no one that viewed it as a correct act. To this day there are still a handful of people that view that as a just action. Yes, it sickens me. Doesn’t change fact however.

            Your “objective justice” is only in the Bible. I’ll rely in ethical law enforcement for moral crimes as most major ones are protected by law. That is one of the main functions of society.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “And I can’t subjectively condemn it?”

            Nope, because “subjective” and “condemn” will not go together – the first is, well, subjective, the second is objective. To remain in your a-theism (and subjective moral values), you have to allow, as Dawkins and many of the most intelligent a-theists have said, that moral values are just personal opinions – ice cream flavors.

            “Just because it is subjective, does not mean I can not have a strong held moral compass that objects to mass murder, torture and slavery.”

            You can’t have an objective moral compass if you only affirm subjective moral values. Mass murder (like abortion), torture, and slavery are just people’s flavors of the month (or year or decade or century) in certain geographies over history.

            “Free will is a subject unto itself, but leave it to say if a god does anything to influence our emotions, thinking, or perception then he has interfered with free will.”

            Partially, yes, but certainly not completely. And, that is really not a problem on theism or a-theism (I know many, but not all, a-theists do not believe in free will), because we are limited in our free will under both views. We cannot fly like Superman, etc.

            “Also my example was about valuing life, which does relate to abortion, however the main topic is morality and whether or not Christians have some monopoly on it (which they don’t).”

            Yes, the main topic is “morality.” Both the a-theist and the theist can behave morally in an objective sense (that is described by Romans 2:15), but, under a-theism, objective moral values and duties just do not exist at all. So, that is the difference between moral sociology (behavior) in the first case and moral ontology (the existence of objective moral values and duties) in the second.

            Many a-theists lead lives that would put the theist to shame, no question. That is sociology, and is an important topic too. But, the point is this: when the a-theist asserts an objective moral value or duty, he is stealing the existence of objective moral values and duties from God – whose Nature grounds Objective Moral Law.

            Here is a pretty interesting link that you might enjoy on this very topic – it kind of mixes ontology and sociology, but we would love to have you in there commenting too, you are very respectful for which I thank you (just take the space out):

            http://winteryknight .com/2015/07/02/the-drowning-stranger-illustration-challenges-atheistic-morality-2/

            “that his actions are horrendous, doesn’t mean it is objective.”

            Aaaah, but do you see where you used the word “horrendous?” You clearly used that in an objective sense. On the subjective view, Hitler just had a different opinion on the value of Jews – his was a different flavor of ice cream. So, this is why I said it is almost impossible to deny Premise 2 of the Moral Argument – every time you assert any moral claim, you have to do it in a way which is subjective, not objective, using qualifiers that render the adjective “horrendous” rather meaningless.

            “It means that millions of people agree on a subjective value.”

            Now, you are getting into the thick of it – good show! The fact that people agree on it does not make it objective – you are 100% correct. Imagine a scenario where Hitler took over the entire planet and either brainwashed or killed those who thought that what he did to the Jews was (objectively) wrong. Under a-theism, what he did would then be fine – there is no One to appeal to (no true Supreme Judge), no transcendent Authority that would know that what Hitler did was objectively wrong. But, on theism, what he did would still be objectively immoral, even though no human knew it. (Kind of like the fact that the earth was never flat even though everyone believed it was. If God exists, then He knew the earth was not flat when all humans thought it was.) That is ontology – the existence of the objective moral values and duties – nice lead-in!

            “Your “objective justice” is only in the Bible.”

            Not at all, my morality is found in the Nature of God – He grounds it and it flows from his Nature.

            “I’ll rely in ethical law enforcement for moral crimes as most major ones are protected by law. That is one of the main functions of society.”

            Now, we are getting into both ontology and epistemology (how we know the objective moral values and duties), good discussion. The problem with relying on man’s law or societal law is that “legal” does not make “moral.” So, you would have to affirm that slavery and Jew gassing were “good” things, because they were legal AND, I might add, most of the people of those times bought into those laws. Perfectly fine if there is no Higher Authority than man.

            In summary, it is a real quandary to deny Premise 2 of the Moral argument. This argument is a very tricky thing for a-theists to navigate, and that is agreed upon in the philosophical community by both a-theists and theists. Sorry for writing so much, but you make an interesting discussion partner. Good talking with you again tonight!

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Fail. You don’t even know the definitions of the words you are using. Subjective not mean it is merely whim or unreason opinion. Without your God, which never existed, there is no means to have an objective morality. You either use your own subjective morality or you use someone else’s subjective morality ( the Bible ).

            I can condemn what I feel like. Someone else is free to object if they believe they are more “right” morally than me. Kinda like how youd debate someone who is pro choice. Geez, if objective morality was a thing, without the Bible you’d be a complete mess. I’m doing just fine without it.

            “You can’t have an objective moral compass if you only affirm subjective moral values.’

            Well, I never said I had an objective moral compass. You keep pushing that word in where it was never intended and it is not only my posts you have done that to.

            Objective morality does NOT have anything to do with how sure someone is of their moral correctness. It only means that morals are absolutes thay exist regardless of our wishes ( and supplied by a higher authority). I don’t agree with that.

            As for the law bit, you are right. However many of the values I hold ARE supported by law. So I can rely on it to protect my ideals. It’s not perfect, especially since morals are subjective but its the best system we have. In a democratic republic the laws are more likely to coincide with the general population’s morality than an authoritarian dictatorship. One of the benefits of living in the US.

            Morality is always a good discussion point, and should be discussed to develop our sense of right and wrong. Even if God does exist, I’d see him more like a parent…where there are rules while you are a kid, but once you grow up you have to decide for yourself (humanity growing up).

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Without your God, which never existed, ”

            Prove it! You have just made an assertion that demands evidence. I am all ears. 🙂

            “Without your God, there is no means to have an objective morality.”

            We agree 100%! That is Premise 1 of the Moral Argument:
            “Premise 1: If there is no God, then objective moral values do not exist.”

            Thank you for affirming Premise 1. I know you granted that before, but you expressed your affirmation more clearly here – for which I thank you. Your phrasing is excellent.

            “You either use your own subjective morality or you use someone else’s subjective morality ( the Bible ).”

            That is presuppositional on a-theism. Of course, if God exists, then we have the Objective Moral Law Giver. That is why the proofs for His existence are so important.

            “I can condemn what I feel like.”

            Not objectively – and condemnation is objective. Under your view, morals are ice cream flavors, and so “condemning” someone for “immoral” behavior would be like “condemning” then for choosing chocolate over vanilla. Please don’t blame me on this – I did not like it either in my a-theist days: take it up with Dawkins, Provine, and Ruse – amongst many others.

            “Geez, if objective morality was a thing, without the Bible you’d be a complete mess.”

            Not true: you are confusing the existence of objective moral values and duties (ontology) with how we know them (epistemology). Two different things. We can know that they exist independent of any book or documents – just by appealing to the other proofs for God’s existence, like Kalam, etc. The epistemology question is a separate, but quite interesting, one too.

            “Well, I never said I had an objective moral compass.”

            You said you had a “moral compass” in an objective manner. But, on your view, your “moral compass” allows you to choose morality in the same way that a Baskins-Robbins menu allows you to choose ice cream flavors. (I am NOT saying that is how you choose them – I believe that God wrote His law on your heart – Romans 2:15 – which is why you and I would agree on most, but not all, moral issues.)

            “Objective morality does NOT have anything to do with how sure someone is of their moral correctness. It only means that morals are absolutes they exist regardless of our wishes ( and supplied by a higher authority).”

            Spot on – if there is no transcendent God, then they do not exist. (Premise 1.) That is again why the proofs for His existence are so critical. I agree with what you say here.

            “However many of the values I hold ARE supported by law. So I can rely on it to protect my ideals.”

            You can rely on it, under your view, only in the sense of choosing ice cream flavors. The fact that your ideals correspond to many laws is not a measure of the moral foundation for those laws.

            “In a democratic republic the laws are more likely to coincide with the general population’s morality”

            We were living in a democratic republic when slavery was legal. 🙂 And the legality of slavery DID coincide with the general population’s morality. Not a good thing, in an objective moral sense, but perfectly fine in selecting ice cream flavors. (Sorry for the allusion to ice cream so much – it is good stuff, right? :-))

            “Even if God does exist, I’d see him more like a parent…where there are rules while you are a kid, but once you grow up you have to decide for yourself (humanity growing up).”

            That IS a very helpful picture of God, actually – He is called our Heavenly Father in Christian circles. In fact, that view of yours, so eloquently expressed, is a major factor in what is called Divine Command Theory, where God has certain rights that we do not. Kind of like the fact that a 10 year old does not have the right to drive a car, but his dad does. The analogy breaks down only in some highly technical areas – left for another time, but what you say here is very useful.

            BTW, do you like the Kalam argument, or have we discussed that before? I know we have had a number of good interactions over the last year or two, but my memory is not the best. Great talking with you again and many blessings to you!

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            I think the Kalam argument is flawed in the sence its assumptions are not necessarily the only possible answer. However it is a good thought excersize to build from for further analysis.

            I disagree with your conclusion that condemning someone is only objective. I can condemn someone, and it can be entirely based on my opinion and not on any set in stone morals given to me by an authority.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “I think the Kalam argument is flawed in the sence its assumptions are not necessarily the only possible answer. ”

            Yes, I understand what you are saying. Let’s use the word “premise” instead of “assumption,” though. It is a fine point, but a necessary one.

            So, looking at Kalam, I think that the best way to address an argument like that is support from (me) or refutation from (you) of the two premises. Then, we can say “Is the argument reasonably plausible?” or “Is it rational to believe that God exists or doesn’t exist using this argument?”

            For my burden, I would give the following evidences in support of the two premises:

            Premise 1 supported by the fact that “out of nothing, nothing
            comes,” otherwise, anything and everything could come from nothing, and experience confirms this – no purple elephants popping randomly into our living room. (And, we know that every one of the 7 billion people on this planet came into
            existence causally.) Finally, causality forms the foundation of scientific inquiry.

            Premise 2 supported by Big Bang, cosmic background radiation, 2nd Law of Thermo, positive inflation rate of the universe, and BGV Theorem – not to mention that an actual infinite of past events cannot occur and a series formed successively cannot be infinite.

            So, you would want to either refute my evidence, provide compelling counter-evidence, or say that the evidence is reasonable, and while you might disagree with the existence of God for OTHER reasons, you would conclude that it is not irrational to believe in the existence of God.

            That is kind of the flow of things, FWIW.

            “I disagree with your conclusion that condemning someone is only objective. I can condemn someone, and it can be entirely based on my opinion and not on any set in stone morals given to me by an authority.”

            Indeed, you CAN do so, but it comes across as highly inconsistent, because condemnation is usually for something VERY objective – say murder, rape, slavery, Jew gassing, etc. It is really hard to get the “objective” out of “condemnation.” If it is not a BIG issue, largely black and white, why would you condemn? If it were, say, that you are a fan of Chris Hitchens (me too!) and someone else is a fan of Richard Dawkins (but you aren’t, me neither :-)), then you would hardly condemn him for that, right? I think that condemnation is reserved for things that we believe are, more or less, black and white, but that implies objectivity.

            Great hearing from you again, UA!

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            When I said assumptions, I meant to use that word. Not in an insulting way, but because the finer points of the Kalam argument are usually used to point out the Christian God specifically. There are religions out there that believe that their Gods actually exist among us and can be killed.

            So essentially the premise is flawed because of assumptions. Lets look at premise 1 of the Kalam argument. You say nothing came out of nothing. Here is what you need to address before you can even use this premise.

            First you have to identify that time (the “before” part) is even relevant when dealing with the Big Bang event. Since gravity is supposed to reach infinity in the singularity (much like a black hole), then so does time. It makes it very hard to identify anything that has come before the Big Bang.

            Second is that you then need to identify that it is indeed nothing. Not knowing and it being nothing is two very different things. The very definition of God in Christianity describes God as a being of some sorts. Either we have defined or was defined by the Bible that God has unlimited power. The very idea of God existing or heaven and hell existing makes SOMETHING be there. We get into an area where concepts are so vague that descriptions vary from person to person. So to say “from nothing” is a stretch in itself, especially in Christian religion.

            Thirdly when we look at quantum physics, we have discovered particles that either pop in and out of existence or both exist and do not exist at the same time. This breaks previous thoughts within physics that the original premise was based on. While this could be that we have not determined a cause for it yet, it is still odd that we can not see a cause for something to cease to exist all together. I am not expert on this subject though so i can not really describe in further detail.

            Also, there is no reason to assume the universes causation is eternal. There is always a possibility that it was caused by something that was finite. Of course, most religious would back track to the farthest known point and claim their god created THAT, and we would be back to the beginning.

            To use the Kalam argument for your God specifically is coming to an inappropriate conclusion. The Kalam argument looks for a “creator”. Something to start it all. it does not address motives, reasoning, physical existence or even will. At best, it would show that your God was possible, a stance you can take already.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “There are religions out there that believe that their Gods actually exist among us and can be killed.”

            Yes, but that would not likely be the Cause that brings a universe filled with 100 billion galaxies into existence. 🙂

            “You say nothing came out of nothing.”

            Nothing is not something. When we say that “EVERYTHING that begins to exist has a cause,” we are talking about things, not nothings, which is the opposite. But, it is a basic philosophical principle, with no defeaters as of yet that “out of nothing, nothing comes.”

            “First you have to identify that time (the “before” part) is even relevant when dealing with the Big Bang event.”

            Actually, time is NOT relevant without creation (i.e., it makes no sense to talk about time “before” the Big Bang, because time did not exist). But, this does not affect causality. (see below)

            “It makes it very hard to identify anything that has come before the Big Bang.”

            Yes, it makes it impossible in fact. But the existence or non-existence of time does not affect causality. Causality does not presuppose time. The temporal effect of causation was obviously simultaneous with the Big Bang. This is why Christians refer to God as timeless without creation, and that God entered into time and space at the moment of creation. (Thus, His omnipresence.)

            Conversely, the question to be asked is how could time come into existence without causation? That is a burden of the a-theist.

            In summary, my belief is that God is timeless without creation and in time with creation (following the Big Bang creation event). But, I am non-dogmatic on that, as there are other possibilities which get into the technical nature of theories of time. It certainly gets around the problem of time being linked “before” causality occurs.

            That is about all the “time” I have for “time.” 🙂

            “Second is that you then need to identify that it is indeed nothing.”

            I am not assuming that it is nothing – since God is not nothing. A Cause is clearly not nothing. I don’t think that is a good place for you to go, because we at least have a Mind of some sort in existence, under theism, but we do not have material – time, space, matter – if the Big Bang is correct.

            But, it is the a-theist who IS assuming that the universe came into existence out of literally nothing uncaused by anything (if denying Premise 1), since it is he who is predisposed to materials and “nothing” is not just no material, but no Mind or anything.

            So, this idea is not a defeater for theism, but for a-theism.

            “Thirdly when we look at quantum physics, we have discovered particles that either pop in and out of existence or both exist and do not exist at the same time.”

            That is actually not true. Those particles popping into and out of existence are doing so in the presence of a QM field, and a QM field is NOT nothing. This was Lawrence Krauss’s big mistake in his recent book, and please do not waste your money on it, because he pulls a whole lot of somethings into his “nothing,” and eventually admits it – sheepishly, I might add. Here is what another a-theist had to say about Krauss’s “nothing:”

            “But that’s just not right. Relativistic-quantum-field-theoretical vacuum states — no less than giraffes or refrigerators or solar systems — are particular arrangements of elementary physical stuff. The true relativistic-quantum-field-­theoretical equivalent to there not being any physical stuff at all isn’t this or that
            particular arrangement of the fields — what it is (obviously, and ineluctably, and on the contrary) is the simple absence of the fields! The fact that some arrangements of fields happen to correspond to the existence of particles and some don’t is not a whit more mysterious than the fact that some of the possible arrangements of my fingers happen to correspond to the existence of a fist and some don’t. And the fact that particles can pop in and out of existence, over time, as those fields rearrange themselves, is not a whit more mysterious than the fact that fists can pop in and out of existence, over time, as my fingers rearrange themselves. And none of these poppings — if you look at them aright — amount to anything even remotely in the neighborhood of a creation from nothing.” –David Albert

            Krauss’s reply to Albert’s scathing review was to call him names. Which says a lot. 🙂

            “Also, there is no reason to assume the universes causation is eternal. There is always a possibility that it was caused by something that was finite. Of course, most religious would back track to the farthest known point and claim their god created THAT, and we would be back to the beginning.”

            Well, this is an interesting line of thought you bring up that would, at first blush, seem to be a defeater. You did a nice job of playing both sides of the argument there, UA – thank you! Along those lines, there is speculation that an unobserved (and probably unobservable) multiverse spawned our universe (and others). While I think that, at this time, such speculation reeks of desperation (surely we would want to draw our conclusions on available evidence and not “but this could have happened” speculation?), the two main reasons for coming up with the multiverse concept were to avoid Premise 2 of Kalam and to make the fine-tuning of our universe more likely to have occurred by chance and not by design.

            Thankfully, the theist has 3 great agnostic heroes in Borde, Guth, and Vilenkin – the brilliant solvers of the BGV Theorem. It turns out that even the multiverse, if it really exists, would be subject to their theorem and require a finite past time beginning, which, as you say merely backs it up one step. So, on the point of Premise 2, the BGV Theorem actually cut the multiverse off at the pass.

            On the fine-tuning problem, it turns out that the multiverse itself would have a fine-tuning problem (because we don’t want those spawned universes bumping into each other, and the precision for the initial conditions for the multiverse is extreme) that makes our odds (1 in 10^(10^123) – the Penrose number) of fine-tuning based on chance alone look downright favorable by comparison. So, I, as a Christian, kind of hope the multiverse is true, because it makes God not only that much bigger but that much more brilliant in designing the parameters and fine-tuning conditions.

            “At best, it would show that your God was possible, a stance you can take already.”

            Kalam shows that we have a LOT of good evidence – scientific, mathematical, logical, and philosophical – to support the idea that God exists. In fact, given the progress of science in the last 150 years, we have much MORE evidence to believe that God exists today than we did back then, because Premise 2 has been shored up immensely – including most recently (2003) by the BGV Theorem. So, Kalam shows that it is very rational to believe in the existence of God IF one is an evidentialist.

            I don’t use it to convince myself – I use it to convince a-theists, particularly the nasty kind (not you – you are very nice, nicer than I was as an a-theist) who spout off about how anyone who believes in science cannot be a Christian or at least a theist. My argument with such people would be “I have a lot more good scientific reasons for being a theist than you do for being an a-theist.”

            So, I am not seeing any good defeaters here on Kalam, and I am not seeing any evidence at all presented for the No God Hypothesis. Good hearing from you again, UA!

            PS. Here is a good paper by Vilenkin on shooting down various cosmological models that attempt to circumvent Premise 2 of Kalam (just take the space out):

            http://arxiv .org/pdf/1204.4658.pdf

            It is not too long and the math is at least somewhat comprehensible if you have a technical degree.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Well, since you claim that something can indeed come out of nothing, then you have an alternate theory to your God creation theory right there. You see, the major remark I get from Christians is that “Atheists believe something came from nothing”. Though that is not our claim since when we get far enough back that we no longer have adequate evidence to make a claim, we claim “I don’t know”. Kalam is not evidence. It is philosophy, and in my opinion, philosophy never gives us the answers, only the questions. It helps us point to where to look. So while we can do the fun mind games, we then need to test the premise, or find evidence to support it.

            “Actually, time is NOT relevant without creation (i.e., it makes no sense to talk about time “before” the Big Bang, because time did not exist). But, this does not affect causality.”

            Well, actually we have trouble even GETTING to before the Big Bang, because the value of time becomes infinite. This is a value that scares mathematicians because it makes either the equation wrong, or the value they get from the equation of the Big Bang event says something much more profound than anything else that is derived from the equation. The value infinite also opens the possibility of time not having a beginning.

            Using loop quantum cosmology, we can view the Big Bang not as a beginning but as a point, as it suggests (not proven) that the universe did not start at the Big Bang, but exists once we can go back far enough.

            Essentially the Big Bang event could lead to any number of possible scenarios INCLUDING an eternal universe that has cycles, the multiverse as you brought up, or any other conclusion may or may not equal God.

            “In summary, my belief is that God is timeless without creation and in time with creation (following the Big Bang creation event).”

            In order for that to be true, God would need to put himself within time. For a being outside of time, concepts like before and after would not exist. Every point of time would be available to him and the future would be as much a memory as the past. There would be no free will as nothing could change. I would go so far to say that there is no possibility of existence outside of time.

            The problem is, is when we look at the evidence, it doesn’t say “God was here”. It leads us to different properties of the universe that describe what it is. It may be impossible for science to determine the creation of the universe, at least for now, however every argument for God, including the Kalam argument, started with “Lets prove God exists”. If people cared as much to prove unicorns exist, I am sure we could find things that would point to the possibility they existed and then try to make the claim that since they could exist that they did exist, as I have seen many do with the “God” premise.

            To conclude, we need to stop trying to “prove” God. I think that jumps the steps in between. If we follow science, as you have pointed out supports you more now than before (not sure I agree), we very well might find the answer is as you say, but we do not have enough evidence for ANYTHING to be the answer yet.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Well, since you claim that something can indeed come out of nothing, then you have an alternate theory to your God creation theory right there.”

            No, both of us are in the boat of “something from nothing” (the Big Bang affirms this). I am in the boat that an incredibly powerful Mind caused an incredibly huge universe to come into existence out of nothing. You are in the boat that NOTHING (literally nothing) caused an incredibly huge universe to come into existence out of nothing. Which one requires more faith?!? 🙂

            “You see, the major remark I get from Christians is that “Atheists believe something came from nothing”.”

            Never from me! My remark is that a-theists believe that “the universe came into existence out of nothing uncaused by anything.” I want you to tell any Christians that give you the wrong statement to come see me. 🙂

            “Kalam is not evidence. It is philosophy, and in my opinion, philosophy never gives us the answers, only the questions.”

            Well, that is just not true. Philosophy is couched in logic, and logic forms the foundation for all searches for truth – scientific ones, mathematical ones, moral ones, etc. Consider the following statement: “The only objective truths are those found through science.” Many people believe this – especially a-theists. Can you tell me what is wrong with that statement?

            “It helps us point to where to look. So while we can do the fun mind games, we then need to test the premise, or find evidence to support it.”

            Exactly! Philosophy forms the framework for any true search for truth. There is an old saying: “Philosophy buries its undertakers.” 🙂

            “that the universe did not start at the Big Bang”

            The BGV Theorem took care of this for our universe, as the evidence supports it:

            ““It is said that an argument is what convinces reasonable men and a proof is what it takes to convince even an unreasonable man. With the proof now in place, cosmologists can no longer hide behind the possibility of a past-eternal universe. There is no escape, they have to face the problem of a cosmic beginning” Alexander Vilenkin (Many Worlds in One [New York: Hill and Wang, 2006], p.176).

            “Essentially the Big Bang event could lead to any number of possible scenarios INCLUDING an eternal universe that has cycles”

            Cyclical universes and past eternal multiverses are both defeated by the BGV Theorem (see the paper I linked you in my last post – they explicitly defeat several entire categories of cosmology models – these men are brilliant!).

            “or any other conclusion”

            Yes, but that is NOT where the data points: inflationary universe plus BGV Theorem alone point to a finite past for OUR universe. We can tell bedtime stories and make up possible cosmological models that avoid a beginning, but they don’t fit the data. We have to base our decisions on what we know at this point, because our lives are very short, and we cannot wait 100 years to see what new evidence comes out.

            “In order for that to be true, God would need to put himself within time.”

            That is the Christian view: He entered this universe upon the moment of creation. (Obviously Jesus did – the question relates to the First and Third Person of the Trinity.) Whether or not He is also “external” to the universe (timeless without creation) is debatable, but Christians generally believe that is so based on the doctrine of His being a Sustainer in addition to a Creator.

            “For a being outside of time, concepts like before and after would not exist. Every point of time would be available to him and the future would be as much a memory as the past.”

            100% true!

            “There would be no free will as nothing could change.”

            Changeless, timeless, non-material, yes. Free will, not necessarily, but that is another brilliant topic you bring up. (Will get us into the various types of free will and theories of time – an excellent topic, but for later. I will just provide one WLC quote on this matter, and then we can get into theories of time and free will on a future discussion – the key is omniscience: “For in virtue of His omniscience, God’s choices are not events, since He neither deliberates temporally nor does His will move from a state of indecision to decision. He simply has free determinations of the will to execute certain actions, and any deliberation can only be said to be explanatorily, not temporally, prior to His decrees.” — William Lane Craig)

            “I would go so far to say that there is no possibility of existence outside of time.”

            I think you would have to prove that. For instance, are you assuming that, since our universe is contingent upon time, that existence could not happen outside of it? For us? For a Mind? That would not be trivial to prove, that but I am open. I think I can prove that you can’t prove it actually, but I will see what you come up with.

            “It may be impossible for science to determine the creation of the universe”

            That seems more than plausible, probably 100% true, given that without creation we have no matter for which science can work on. Science is restricted to some form of materialism, which is why philosophers have the advantage: they can deal with materialism AND supernaturalism (above nature, non-materialistic objects like minds and abstract objects, mathematics, numbers, concepts like “love,” etc).

            “To conclude, we need to stop trying to “prove” God.”

            I think that we need to continue to ask the question: which is more plausible, that God exists or doesn’t? That is a fair argument on both sides. The theist comes up with many proofs in favor, and the a-theist is welcome to provide proofs that end with a conclusion “Therefore, God does not exist.” That is the standard fare anyway. It is a level playing field.

            “but we do not have enough evidence for ANYTHING to be the answer yet”

            I think we have very good reasons to believe that God exists, based on the evidence, and not very good reasons to believe that He does not exist. I think that this is what arguments like Kalam, Moral, Fine-Tuning, Unconditioned Reality, etc, flesh out. They are not 100% proofs, iron-clad, just as the proofs that God does not exist are not iron-clad. I don’t think we have to wait until we KNOW with 100% certainty, in fact, if the Christian God is real, we will never KNOW with 100% certainty (this side of death) anyway.

            Anyway, good hearing from you again, UA – you brought up some great points again!!!

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Then, why are the Ten Commandments displayed in the SCOTUS?

            They aren’t.

            Why is Muhammad depicted in the supreme court?

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            As you walk up the steps to the building which houses the U.S. Supreme Court you can see near the top of the building a row of the world’s law givers and each one is facing one in the middle who is facing forward with a full frontal view – it is Moses and he is holding the Ten Commandments. As you enter the Supreme Court courtroom, the two huge oak doors have the Ten Commandments engraved on each lower portion of each door. As you sit inside the courtroom, you can see the wall, right above where the Supreme Court judges sit, a display of the Ten Commandments. There are Bible verses etched in stone all over the Federal Buildings and Monuments in Washington, D.C.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            As you walk up the steps to the building which houses the U.S. Supreme Court you can see near the top of the building a row of the world’s law givers and each one is facing one in the middle who is facing forward with a full frontal view

            Nope — Moses AND Confucius are facing forward, and Solon isn’t looking straight ahead, but he isn’t looking at Moses, either.

            Fail. You didn’t even BOTHER to look at a photo of it, you just copy/pasted from elsewhere.

            Snopes goes into detail how wrong it is. Just search for the text you cribbed.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Ethics = External behavior
            Morals = Internal values.

            Law governs ethics, not morals. Any argument to the contrary is based in ignorance.

            So someone that believed they had a right to own slaves would be a moral judgement (and one preached as just in the OT), however the law would govern ethics which would prevent him from acting on said values. It would however have nothing to do with the fact that he held those values in the first place.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Ethics = External behaviorMorals = Internal values.”

            Only presuming that a-theism is true. You would need to establish that first.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            You are redefining the definitions?

            If anything, the Bible imposes its own form of ethics by claiming it is an authority over people, complete with a reward/punishment system.

            If you don’t like the definitions, perhaps you are using the wrong words?

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Not at all. It is clear that both definitions are based on a presumption of atheism and man-centeredness. You may feel free to provide evidence that God does not exist. You share a burden there anyway.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            God can not be proven to exist or to not exist because the occasions where it is written that he has interacted within the scope of the natural world, there is no evidence for. So he is not falsifiable.

            We can only gather evidence based on the rules we observe in this world, since the common description of god is that he lives outside of those boundaries, he is unreachable and unknowable (which is why the Bible is a sham even if he does exist).

            Definitions are not based on belief, unless they have an alternative use within the religion. For example, faith within religion is deemed as belief without proof, where as evidence is not required for the use of the term faith outside of religion.

            So I don’t see how the definition would change in this case. Ethics has to do with authority imposing a rule on society. Morals have to do with individual belief.

            Using the famous baker that refused his service to the gay couple, ethics requires him to not discriminate (society’s values) but his morals disagrees with supporting gay marriage. Ethics very often line up with morals, but not always. This is probably the case for you, where your morals and your religions teachings are in tune.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “God can not be proven to exist or to not exist”

            This is 100% true (there is even a proof for the latter :-)), but not for the reasons you cited. Nevertheless, we can EACH provide scientific, philosophical, mathematical, and logical evidence for the God Hypothesis (me) and the No God Hypothesis (you), and see which one is more reasonable on plausibility. I believe I have some VERY good stuff in favor of the God Hypothesis, and that the evidence in favor of the No God Hypothesis is weak at best. But, I am always open to hear otherwise.

            “he is unreachable and unknowable”

            The second part of your phrase, “He is unknowable,” is actually self-refuting, because it is a statement of knowledge about God (namely, that He is unknowable). This is one of the ways, basic logic or proof by contradiction, that we can KNOW that, if God exists, He is at least partially knowable. We cannot violate the Law of Non-Contradiction, and still remain rational.

            “For example, faith within religion is deemed as belief without proof”

            Not in the Bible or in Christian theology:

            I hear this a lot from those who are not theists, and I am really surprised by it, because it is a mis-understanding of the word “faith” in the Bible, which actually would be better translated as “trust.” Christian faith goes like this: you are in need of a serious surgery. You investigate all the best surgeons in that field around the country and pick those you believe to be the top 3. You interview them and decide on the one you believe is the best. On the morning of the surgery, you get to the hospital early to fill out the forms. One of these forms is the authorization for the surgeon to operate on you. When you sign that form, it is then that you have placed your trust (faith) in that surgeon. In Christianity, the Surgeon is Jesus.

            For me, as a former atheist, it took a lot of unsupported faith to believe that the universe popped into existence out of nothing (Big Bang) uncaused by anything (if Premise 1 of Kalam is refuted) and that life sprang forth from non-life when lightning hit some mud (or some variation of this on abiogenesis). Those
            are mega-miracles by comparison with the Creator of a universe filled with 100 billion galaxies raising Someone from the dead. Such a “miracle” would be child’s play for Him.

            Now, to be fair, both Christians and a-theists CAN engage in blind faith. A good example of blind faith on the atheist side would be when Stephen Hawking, a super-brilliant scientist, said “the universe created itself.” Now, he is convinced that the universe had a beginning (Premise 2 of Kalam), and he knows the logical suicide of a scientist trying to deny Premise 1 of Kalam, so to avoid a Cause for the universe (which logically MUST follow), he has it creating itself – a clear violation of basic logic and metaphysics. So, I guess I would end this by saying that everyone has faith in something – the question is “is that faith misplaced or does it have evidence to support it?”

            That is why the definitions do not apply, under theism, BTW. Good hearing from you again, UA!

          • John Hitchhiker

            True but bro, you realise anarchists are the opposite of your #5 right?
            So it’s relatively safe to say you do not detest anarchist; you misunderstand them.

          • Phipps Mike

            5. I detest anybody that doesn’t believe in 100% equality.

            exactly, which is why I detest them. They want the poor to die and the rich to live. Nobody is more deserving of life than another. I RESPECT law.

          • John Hitchhiker

            I can respect that but you clearly don’t know what anarchists are :/
            Anarchists don’t want the poor to die and the rich to live :/ if anything that’s kinda what the government likes, also kinda sounds like you just described capitalism at its finest. Do you respect laws that forbid you from feeding the homeless? Because that’s what the law says in some states. Anarchists simply want more freedom, they do not condemn people to die, nor judge them for their nature. They believe people should be equal, no government elites or anything like that. Maybe research some anarchy stuff, while staying away from the propaganda that is so commonly thrown at your face bro

          • Phipps Mike


            “Full Definition of ANARCHY
            1
            a : absence of government
            b : a state of lawlessness or political disorder due to the absence of governmental authority
            c : a utopian society of individuals who enjoy complete freedom without government
            2
            a : absence or denial of any authority or established order
            b : absence of order : disorder ”

            YOU described Libertarians, not Anarchists, except you did mention the Utopia thing. As you can see from the definition, anarchists want no law. I think that is detestable. As far as those laws forbidding people to feed the poor. yes, its STUPID and needs to be repealed. But as an OVERALL, law is a GOOD thing in the way that it maintains ORDER and stops chaos and vigilanteism.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            How can you hate Batman!?! lol j/k

          • Phipps Mike

            lol, even though you are joking, your statement does have some merit. there ARE situations that exist where I would give a free pass to vigilanteism. It would require though a prerequisite that it take place DURING the crime instead of the next day…etc… Also, citizens arrest would be a form of it.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Agreed. I think most people would be against vigilantism.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Do you even understand the difference between Ethics and Morals? Please look that up before you stuff your foot in your mouth anymore.

          • FoJC_Forever

            Basing law on science is why the system is so messed up. When law is based on Truth, it is fair and produces peace and justice in societies.

          • Phipps Mike

            Science IS truth, Evidence has to be there to convict, DNA is the best thing since the wheel. That is FAR from being ‘messed up”.

          • FoJC_Forever

            Jesus (the) Christ is Truth, not science. You will learn that one Day.

          • Phipps Mike

            did I say that Jesus wasn’t truth? No, stop trying to put words in my mouth. My words were to express that ONLY science can PROVE guilt. God has NOTHING to do with proving guilt in a courtroom. How do you even make such big leaps that are inapplicable to what I am relating to you?

          • FoJC_Forever

            Is Jesus (the) Christ the Way, the Truth and the Life?

          • Phipps Mike

            of course he is. The only disagreement we have is that you think America should be RULED by Christian religion. I subscribe to freedom of belief because nobody can prove empirically our origin. Therefore, you cant RULE people by what if doctrines.

          • FoJC_Forever

            People like you are nothing more than empty tombs, professing to believe in God, but deny His power and authority.

          • Phipps Mike

            do you see God down here communicating with the legislature? I don’t. In the Bible, god said that we as man are to take care of our land and the animals and people who live here, That means he leaves it to US to make the laws. He is not here to do that. Do common sense principals escape you? You are confusing. One minute you seem to grasp things well and the next, you act like a 2nd grader by saying things that are too easily explained. God does not have authority IN THE UNITED STATES….understand? FREEDOM OF RELIGION. Look it up. Obviously you don’t know it means we can CHOOSE what religion to believe in.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Jesus is a tool for motivating donations.

            He is also a zombie based on Bible references.

            He is also not the only one raised from the dead according to the Bible.

            There is only one first-person source (arguably, might be 0), of the event in the first place.

            I always found it odd, that people worship a Jewish zombie, then depict him as a white guy.

          • John Hitchhiker

            Sorry bro but when law was based on Truth (I’m assuming truth = ‘the holy book’) we were in the middle ages burning women because they were witches, killing people because they claimed the Earth was not the centre of the universe (It is NOT) and committing all kinds of terrible misdeeds. Sure let’s go back to the Truth days and burn ourselves some gays? */Sarcasm*

          • FoJC_Forever

            No, when laws are based in Truth, they do not allow for murder. Our laws not being based in Truth have allowed for the murder of millions of human beings in their most vulnerable state. This is just one example. Laws not being based in Truth can be changed to cater to any number of carnal desires.

            Catholicism and other false religions not only motivated the murdering of witches in the middle ages, but also the murdering of anyone who would submit to their dominance and leadership.

            Witchcraft is being practiced extensively in the world. Most people don’t understand what constitutes witchcraft. Disinformation has allowed it to grow. Witchcraft is another form of paganism. All witchcraft is evil.

            The Scriptures don’t teach the earth is the center of creation.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            So why don’t you live in a country with a Christian government? Then your laws can be based on “Truth”.

            Or you can go to a country that bases its laws on another religion, and see EXACTLY why we do not want religion in our government here. (Hint: you’d probably be dead in a week based on what you type if you lived in such a country).

    • Rebus Caneebus

      So, this is a “pastor” who takes his marching orders from the Constitution and NOT the Bible. Furthermore, he does not think that government and religion should be mixed

      Maybe he’s just following “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.” State capital grounds are clearly part of the former.

      but strange how such a sentiment does NOT apply to his liberal theology which he freely pushes.

      Does he try to get the government to push his liberal theology?

      He needs to just admit, if he even realizes it, that all laws are a legislation of morality

      So is the US immoral for driving on the right side, or is the UK immoral for driving on the left side?

      • FoJC_Forever

        His “liberal theology” is what motivated him to get the monument removed. So, yes, he does want his liberal theology honored, just as those who reject God want their atheism honored by law.

        • Rebus Caneebus

          His “liberal theology” is what motivated him to get the monument removed.

          Following the constitution is not a “theology”. Erecting religious tenets on public property, on the other hand…

          Sorry, now you’re just whining that you can’t impose your beliefs on him. He’s only making the playing field level.

          • FoJC_Forever

            No whining at all. I have never and will never impose my beliefs on anyone. That doesn’t get people saved from their Sin. Your rejection of the Word of God is your own choosing. However, atheists and humanists want others to honor their unbelief, so they have no problem imposing their beliefs on others.

            Fortunately, your unbelief only damns your own soul, and you cannot stop anyone from inheriting Eternal Life.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Lying about atheists and humanists, I see.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Interesting. So you think that Atheist and Humanists want people to respect there conclusions on whether god exists or not, or at least their right to hold such beliefs?

            If that is the case, I agree with you. Because you want the same thing for yourself and your beliefs. However, you treat it as since you belief in your “Truth” you are the only one with such a right.

          • FoJC_Forever

            Placing a monument of ten commandments from the Mosaic Law does not constitute Congress passing a law. For example, no one is jailed for cheating on their spouse. No one is jailed for desiring to have their neighbors possessions. Not all lying it punishable by law, though some lying is punishable. Thus, the “10 Commandments”, even when enshrined on granite, is not being followed by law enforcement.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Placing a monument of ten commandments from the Mosaic Law does not constitute Congress passing a law.

            Correct, but irrelevant for two reasons:

            1) The 14th amendment and incorporation apply the first amendment to state governments.

            2) This monument was removed because it violated the state constitution.

            Thus, the “10 Commandments”, even when enshrined on granite, is not being followed by law enforcement.

            That’s not the reason why it was removed. Read the opinion.

          • FoJC_Forever

            The quote-reply method of communication you and your friends use is archaic and does not lead to Truth. You squabble about petty issues and make meaningless points.

            You are on your way to spend Eternity in the Lake of Fire, and your kind is worried about a granite monument which can do no harm to anyone.

            Your kind is the height and epitome of complete foolishness and ignorance. Maybe one day, before your time on earth ends, you will have an epiphany and open your heart and mind to the LORD.

          • Phipps Mike

            “The quote-reply method of communication”
            you are a hypocrite. ALL Biblical passages posted by you and YOUR friends are ALSO quotes. (quoting the Bible)

          • FoJC_Forever

            It’s a pattern. Quote-comment, quote-comment, quote-comment. It’s a method of dissecting comments, which easily leads to pulling things out of context.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Ask them to provide the Church documents – statements of faith, doctrine, and practice – that support their Biblical “interpretation.” It always works. And, if they are quoting the OT, make them provide proof that they have spent time on Orthodox Judaism sites to point out these deficiencies. (They never do.) We are dealing with unhinged anti-Christians here and not thoughtful a-theists.

          • FoJC_Forever

            Even “thoughtful atheists” are antichrist. Their demeanor doesn’t change their fallen state. Presenting Scripture to someone who doesn’t believe the Bible is the inspired, written Word of God is futile.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            So why do you continue?

          • Phipps Mike

            I understand what you mean, but I agree it is bad only if it gets TOO drawn out as you mention. Fact checking is necessary in debates.

          • FoJC_Forever

            I’m not debating. Other than a few personal comments, I’m stating Truth and correcting error.

          • Phipps Mike

            the attempt to correct error IS debate. Fact checking has to be done to prove error.

          • FoJC_Forever

            Yeah, I knew you would turn to the debating about debate.

          • Phipps Mike

            lol…you made a funny. Seriously though, all comments made in any thread are open for debate by default. If you engage in ANY disagreement, then you are part of a debate. Only way to settle debates is by fact checking. Among that fact checking is quotes as proof.

          • FoJC_Forever

            What is quoted isn’t Truth. Jesus (the) Christ is Truth.

          • Phipps Mike

            do you forget what started our debate? We are talking about presenting facts. Your gripe was that you see a pattern of people using quotes as their facts. Sometimes those quotes CONTAIN facts. Such as what is a black hole? then somebody quotes Stephen Hawkings about what he said a black hole is. That has nothing to do with God and if God were to answer, he would agree with Hawkings thereby making Hawkings quote….a fact. Why do you argue such simple logic? nothing better to do?

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Thank you for using Truth as opposed to real truth. Your Truth does not equal truth.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Without the quote/comment, you would merely swing the argument all over the place, and place the focus on preaching as opposed to making a rational argument.

            If you are afraid of having your actual quote being refuted so easily, make better comments to be quoted from.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            The quote-reply method of communication you and your friends use is archaic and does not lead to Truth.

            You can stick with your incoherent babbling.

            You squabble about petty issues and make meaningless points.

            Can’t stand being utterly wrong.

            You are on your way to spend Eternity in the Lake of Fire, and your kind is worried about a granite monument which can do no harm to anyone.

            The typical refrain of the Christian fanatic who has lost the argument.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Valdemort is coming for you to rule over your magicless Muggle self. Be prepared for his coming!

            You aren’t afraid of Valdemort for the same reason Atheists are not afraid of your God’s hell

          • Phipps Mike

            so tell me just what PURPOSE does having the ten commandments displayed by the courthouse have if not trying to subliminally indoctrinate so that legislators would make religious laws?

          • FoJC_Forever

            A reminder of the religious heritage of the country, as well as a reminder of the current religious culture that is still prominent in the country. Those who deny that religion, specifically forms of Christianity, has had an integral role, for the good, in the development of this country are simply denying reality.

            No one is forced to stand in homage to the monument. No one is being forced to voice compliance or face criminal or social punishments.

            Regardless, Jesus (the) Christ is still LORD. He is still Returning. He is still the Judge of all mankind.

          • SpeakTruth

            Come on. You can’t truly believe that.

          • Phipps Mike

            good answer. I am all for historical monuments, however, it is my understanding that the 10 commandments monument was placed up not long ago. I agree with everything you wrote on that reply, I just have to be a tad suspicious as to the INTENT of why the monument just HAD to be placed at THAT VENUE.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            So should be have statues of the Salem Witch Trials? That’s part of our “heritage” too. How about slavery plantations? Trail of Tears?

            We have plenty of negative things in our history, no need to advertise this one.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            “[T]he Ten Commandments are an important component of the foundation of the laws and legal system of the United States of America and of the State of Oklahoma,” the 2009 bill authorizing the monument acknowledged.

            Um…. sounds like a law to me….

      • WorldGoneCrazy

        “Maybe he’s just following “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s.””

        No, he is just another apostate “pastor” who is indistinguishable from any other a-theist.

        “Does he try to get the government to push his liberal theology?”

        Clearly he does, and this article proves it. 🙂

        “So is the US immoral for driving on the right side, or is the UK immoral for driving on the left side?”

        In the US, it is immoral to drive on the left side of the road, and in the UK, it is immoral to drive on the right side. You should be more careful before posting. 🙂 God bless!

        • Rebus Caneebus

          No, this article shows that he doesn’t want the government to get involved in religion. I don’t know why you think that’s pushing liberal theology. You don’t seem to know what words mean.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Liberal theology IS trying to keep theology out of government: conservative theology, not liberal theology. 🙂

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Liberal theology IS trying to keep theology out of government

            It isn’t theology. It’s political, and Jefferson and Madison, among others, supported separating them.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            I have to laugh at this.

            Are you saying everyone that considers themselves conservative is Christian? I think you are gravely mistaken.

            Theology is theology. I don’t think any god text teach anything about political leanings.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            “Are you saying everyone that considers themselves conservative is Christian? I think you are gravely mistaken.”

            You would be 100% right, if I had said that. No, the fact that one is conservative does not make one a Christian, however, a conservative person is much more likely to be a Christian than a liberal person is.

            “Theology is theology. I don’t think any god text teach anything about political leanings.”

            Well, that is just not true – one hint is that conservatives take their theology MUCH more seriously than liberals do: liberal theology (high view of man’s goodness, low view of God and the Bible) leads to liberal politics, while conservative theology low view of man’s goodness, high view of God and the Bible) leads to liberal politics. You can see this in almost every issue that divides the two (which is almost every issue). None of this means that a liberal cannot become a Christian, merely that she probably will not remain one for long after an authentic faith profession or deep commitment. Even an a-theist who is conservative, say, has to wonder what the objective grounds are for those political beliefs.

            Wayne Grudem and Norman Geisler have written a lot on this subject matter – they are both Christians – I can provide some sources, if you like. Also, Arthur C. Brooks has done extensive studies on charitable giving of one’s time, treasure, and talents by political and religious affiliation, and it is practically crystal clear in difference. (Not good for liberal secularists.)

            I like your moniker – I was one of those not so long ago. 🙂 Great question!

        • John Hitchhiker

          “In the US, it is immoral to drive on the left side of the road, and in the UK, it is immoral to drive on the right side. You should be more careful before posting. ” While what you said is not false Crazy, I believe the following to be a better reply:

          Technically the UK is debatably immoral for driving on the left side. Why do you ask? Well since most people are right-handed, swordsmen preferred to keep to the left in order to have their right arm nearer to an opponent and their scabbard further from him.

          So why did we drive on the left? So we could mount our horses easier while riding a horse and also so we could possibly attack people going in the opposite direction or avoid getting attacked better. Eventually wagons made for a move to the right and Napoleon as well wanted people on the right to make conflict more difficult. Or so they say 😉

    • LadyGreenEyes

      Well, just goes to show that “mainstream” Baptists aren’t rally Baptists anymore, by definition!! What an embarrassment that man is!

      • WorldGoneCrazy

        That’s a great point I had not considered: I was taking “mainstream” in the same context as “mainstream media” – liberal and worldly. 🙂 Nothing “mainstream” about Jesus, the disciples, Paul, and the early Church.

        • LadyGreenEyes

          Definitely not, but many of the modern churches seem to have gone that route! More and more, you see people in churches willing to ignore this or that in the Bible, if it doesn’t fit the worldview. They’d rather look clever in the world’s eyes than trust in God.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Yes, there is a desire by so many nominal Christians to want the world to like them, and to be happy because of it, isn’t there? But, we just don’t see that anywhere with Jesus, the disciples, Paul, the early Church, etc. Look at those 21 Coptic Christian martyrs on the beach in Egypt: they could have easily renounced Christ, but did not. They were not seeking happiness to die that way, but were blessed by God, a reward far superior to being liked in this finite lifetime. And, the more time they spend in Heaven, the less they will even think that their martyrdom was hard, the less importance it will hold in their everlasting lives. Can’t wait to meet them, frankly.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            I am curious. Ever think that it may be that some values in the Bible may clash with the values that they hold internally, and they need a way to rationalize them without losing their faith?

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            I’m not sure that I understand your question, but if you are saying, for instance, that some Christians want to have an abortion or engage in illicit sex, yet know that those are clearly not permitted by Christianity, so they read into the Bible what they want, then yes. These are the types that also do not study the Bible (they just read it passively), or who think that God is their cosmic butler or that we are His pets, or who do not engage in good secular evidential arguments against abortion and illicit sex – they just want to do what they know is wrong but do not want to feel guilty about it.

            In fact, when we look at de-conversion testimonies, it is almost always about illicit sex. Rachael Slick is a great example (just take the space out):

            http://winteryknight .com/2013/07/21/clear-thinking-about-rachael-slicks-departure-from-christianity/

            She was not given any evidence countering God’s existence. She was not even given a very good question – a pretty basic one in fact for those who engage even a little bit. She just wanted to have sex with her boyfriend without feeling guilty about it. And, now she is FREE! (Or thinks so anyway. :-))

            Not sure if that it where you were headed with the question?

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            I am not sure that was what I meant. Not a “you know its wrong but do it anyways” scenario.

            I’ll try to give an example. Around the time of the civil war, Southern Baptists used the Bible to give them justification for keeping slaves. I am sure some of their followers did not fall in line with that way of thinking and either silently held their tongue or switched to another denomination that was more in line with their belief.

            Someone that steals, or kills someone (or other “sinful” act) usually doesn’t do it because they feel it is right. They often know it is wrong and do it anyways. My question is when they honestly believe something is right or wrong, and it contradicts with the Bible.

          • LadyGreenEyes

            It’s like many thin they are still stuck in public school,, and feel they have to win some sort of popularity contest; be liked for following the herd instead of for being themselves, and doing what s right. That is one of the most obvious signs of the sin nature of people around, I believe.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Yes, I agree 100%. I think we all want to be liked by people around us at some level, especially when doing the right thing is doing the hard thing. But, we just do not see any of that with Jesus, the disciples, Paul, etc – they all seem to prefer to be liked by God – and be obedient to Him.

          • LadyGreenEyes

            Better to stand with God alone, than stand with a fallen world!

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Amen! By your definition (God’s too), I am getting “better and better” all the time – and paying for it! 🙂

          • LadyGreenEyes

            Ah, but the payment here, for what we gain, is so small!

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            Isn’t that the truth?!? We were bought at a much more expensive price. And, 1000 years into Heaven, we will wonder what we were even concerned about on earth. That is a must remember for me – thank you for pointing it out, LadyGreenEyes!

          • LadyGreenEyes

            Any time! I get reminders I need from other believers often enough! This world is where we learn about Him, and why our choices matter.

  • Puppet Theater

    The Oklahoma Supreme Court made the correct ruling according to the laws in the State Constitution.

  • Phipps Mike

    ““[T]he Ten Commandments are an important component of the foundation of
    the laws and legal system of the United States of America and of the
    State of Oklahoma,”
    the laws that COINCIDE with some of the ten commandments were from morals that PRE-DATE Christianity. That’s the thing all the knuckleheads need to get through their noggins.

    • FoJC_Forever

      Christianity is Eternal.

      • Jim H

        So is stupidity.

        • FoJC_Forever

          Clever, but inaccurate. Stupidity is a fruit of Sin. Sin has a time limit, so stupidity has a time limit. Neither will be present in the New Heavens and New Earth.

          • Jim H

            Show me the Bible verse for that one.

          • FoJC_Forever

            So you can twist them? No. If you want to know the Truth, then you will.

          • Jim H

            To my knowledge, only Proverbs 12:1 (ESV) uses the word “stupid”:

            “Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge, but he who hates reproof is stupid.”

            Reproof means criticism. I criticized what you said as having no biblical basis, you didn’t like that and refused to even address it. So by biblical standards, that makes you stupid.

          • FoJC_Forever

            Like I said, so you can twist it. If you were saved and following Jesus, you would have knowledge of what I wrote. As it is, you just like to banter and berate.

            Those who seek Truth, seek Truth. They don’t ask others for Scripture references, unless they are babes in Christ, because they are reading the Scriptures daily, praying continually, and receiving knowledge from the Holy Spirit.

            Those who just like to argue about religious stuff are always debating Scripture.

          • Jim H

            “Like I said, so you can twist it. If you were saved and following Jesus, you would have knowledge of what I wrote. As it is, you just like to banter and berate.”

            I didn’t twist a thing. It seems to me you were pontificating and said something that was really couldn’t be supported. I called you on it and rather than address what I said, which would have been the intellectually honest thing to do, you now instead claim I can’t understand your nonsensical comment without being a Christian.

            As far as banter and berating you are hardly above that. You just commented elsewhere on this thread that ‘Even “thoughtful atheists” are antichrist’ and ” Your kind is the height and epitome of complete foolishness and ignorance.”
            You need to remove the plank from your own eye, before pointing out the speck in mine.

            “Those who seek Truth, seek Truth. They don’t ask others for Scripture references.”

            I don’t think that is self serving B.S. Christians use scripture references all the time, usually to avoid actual reasonable debate. They just don’t like them being used against their argument.

          • FoJC_Forever

            You rant and just like to argue. You must be angry inside since you like to take it out on others.

            You like to use half quotes, not responding to the entire context of the comments. This serves your desire to argue.

            You didn’t “call me on” anything. You’re simply wandering in Darkness and cannot understand Truth. The more you type, the more I’m convinced you like wandering in Darkness.

          • Jim H

            I don’t like to argue, but I can’t help myself when people say sanctimonious nonsense like “Stupidity is a fruit of Sin” and can’t support it with anything.

            If I use half quotes, and don’t respond to the entire context of the a comments, it is because my arguments tend to be quite lengthy and I need to find brevity wherever I can find it. Also, much of what you say is not arguable because it is just preaching on your part and is based on nothing but your own rambling thoughts. If I missed something that you thought merited a reply let me know. But in all fairness you rarely provide anything other than preaching in your responses.

            I have called you on a number of things you have said that you can’t/won’t support. Your arguments seem to show that you are the one wandering around in an intellectual darkness. I don’t think dogmatic beliefs that scrupulously avoid reason and real thinking equates to truth.

            Don’t get me wrong, as far as I am concerned, you can personally believe whatever you want. I have no need to try to get the world to think just like me. However, you do seem to have that need.

            So, you need to be prepared to defend what you say, or you need to stop saying indefensible things.

          • FoJC_Forever

            Read the entire book of Proverbs.

          • Jim H

            I have read the entire Bible cover to cover, including the books Martin Luther removed from the Old Testament and many pseudepigraphic and apocryphal writings, as well, along with some Jewish midrash and Gnostic writings.
            What’s your point? .

          • FoJC_Forever

            Read it again and again and again.

            The Bible is not a novel.

          • Jim H

            Actually I still do and some of it is. Take a “Bible as Literature” class and learn something that might challenge you a little.

      • Ken Campbell

        How do you know that Christianity is eternal. So far it has only been around for approximately 2000 years. There have been many religions that have existed longer than that and have then disappeared.

        • FoJC_Forever

          Truth.

          • Ken Campbell

            OK…..Um…..one word answers don’t exactly clarify your point. What exactly are you referring to as ‘truth’? Is it my comment (thank you)?

    • WorldGoneCrazy

      I am surprised that you have never read Romans 2:15 nor do you have a understanding of how objective moral values and duties are grounded in an Objective Moral Law Giver. The fact that human beings behaved morally prior to the existence of documents is a straw man attack on the fact that they did not do so prior to their creation by the One in Whom the objective moral values exist. You have fallen for a very poor a-theist internet argument that is not found in serious philosophical discussion.

      • Phipps Mike

        “on the fact that they did not do so prior to their creation by the One in Whom the objective moral values exist.”
        You have fallen for the premise that morals existed at creation time.

        • WorldGoneCrazy

          If God exists, then objective moral values most certainly DID exist at creation, as part and parcel of His Nature.

          • Phipps Mike

            moral values didnt exist IN MAN.

          • WorldGoneCrazy

            But they existed. 🙂 Man is not the source of objective moral values – he could never be.

        • Jim H

          WGC will no longer engage in conversation with me, but I have been in many discussions with him and given his arguments a lot of thought. Where is something I came up with after he stopped talking to me, so I have never used it with him. I hope you find it useful and I would appreciate any comments you have on it.

          I would say that if objective moral values exist, they could not exist prior to creation, or even prior to man, because the term morality is only meaningful if men, or some similarly intelligent life exists. Men are moral agents, capable of intention and acting with reference to right and wrong. Without moral agents, moral values are a meaningless concept.

          In a universe without men there is no morality. A black hole is not immoral as it sucks in everything around it. It has no intention. In fact, nothing in the universe would be moral or immoral because it lacks intention.

          • Phipps Mike

            ” they could not exist prior to creation, or even prior to man, because
            the term morality is only meaningful if men, or some similarly
            intelligent life exists.”
            exactly, because moral and norm are synonymous.

  • Dave_L

    We saw what happens when Christianity becomes a tool of the State. Constantine gave us the Antichrist Papacy and an estimated 50 million dead Christians and others at their hands. The Scofield Reference Bible gave us a false definition of Israel and has heavily influenced much of America’s involvement (Christian Zionism) in the bloodshed in the Middle East. “Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.”” (John 18:36, ESV)

    • Lark62

      Which is why the government should stay out and religious monuments placed on private property.

    • markinator

      50 million dead christians? That would be newsworthy if it were true.

      • Dave_L

        Try history. Begin with the Inquisition….

  • Dave_L

    The 10 Commandments cannot save people from sin. They only show people how sinful they are. But, just as people harness the power of nature, gravity, wind, growing cycles, etc. the Bible teaches that those who practice the 10 Commandments reap material success in life. When Israel practiced them, they were victorious in war, and became free from the plagues and famines God sent on others. When they ignored them, they suffered as bad or worse than anyone else. People can swim upstream against them, or move downstream with them. But it is good to post them on private property where people aren’t so touchy. Possibly across the street from government property.

    • http://www.remnantofgod.org/ John1429dotorg

      An outward display is not necessary. That is a display of force. God prefers for the Law to be written on the heart of men, and in His Word He promises to write it on the hearts and minds of the man who puts his trust and faith in Hm

  • FoJC_Forever

    Jesus (the) Christ is still LORD and Judge of all mankind, whether or not there is a monument containing part of the Mosaic Law on display anywhere. God deals with mankind based on His Righteousness, which is the only Righteousness, and the Unbelievers cannot cause Him to lose His place and authority over the universe and all that’s in it. Jesus (the) Christ, the same yesterday, today, and forever.

    While the rejection of God is an issue, it’s not about removing God’s Authority, it’s an issue concerning the corruption present in those who reject His Word and Salvation. This is “new” and it is not new. It shouldn’t be ignored, but those who follow Jesus don’t have to be worried. Those who want Truth will come to know Jesus (the) Christ, and those who embrace Darkness and Sin will continue to seek their own sinful will and be led by the lies of the Devil.

  • DNelson

    No surprise there.

    ““[T]he Ten Commandments are an important component of the foundation of the laws and legal system of the United States of America and of the State of Oklahoma,””

    Given that 7 of the 10 commandments directly violate our Constitution, he is clearly mistaken in his assessment.

    ” “[T]he courts of the United States of America and of various states frequently cite the Ten Commandments in published decisions”

    Really? I’d love to see some decisions where the courts have cited the 10 commandments as being relevant to their rulings.

    • All In

      You know that the commandments were given to protect society, and most importantly, to show that no one is without sin, right?

      • DNelson

        How does demanding that people not worship a god other than the Christian God, protect society?

        How does demanding that people not take the Christian god’s name in vain, protect society?

        How does demanding that a person honor their mother and father, regardless of how they were treated, protect society?

        • All In

          > How does demanding that people not worship a god other than the Christian God, protect society?

          God knows what’s best for us. We generally don’t. All the other gods are manmade, and therefore, a waste of time.

          >How does demanding that people not take the Christian god’s name in vain, protect society?

          God draws close to those who love and honor Him, and away from those who don’t. A quick look at Jewish history will demonstrate how that works out.

          > How does demanding that a person honor their mother and father, regardless of how they were treated, protect society?

          You are missing the intent of the command. It’s about showing respect where it’s due. But as people fall away from God, it becomes less due.

          • DNelson

            So you can’t say how the 10 commandments benefit society. You can only state that you think it would be beneficial if everyone were Christian.

            “All the other gods are manmade, and therefore, a waste of time.”

            As is the Christian god.

    • Reason2012

      He didn’t say all 10 of them were -but they were used to model our laws and the founding of our country and have historical significance. As much as you might hate the history of America, it’s here to stay.

  • Dave_L

    People can remove the 10 Commandments written in stone but they cannot remove it from their hearts. It is a part of us whether we like it, or accept it or not. Even the earliest records of moral law – before God spoke to Israel show this.

    “When Gentiles, who do not possess the law, do instinctively what the law requires, these, though not having the law, are a law to themselves. They show that what the law requires is written on their hearts, to which their own conscience also bears witness; and their conflicting thoughts will accuse or perhaps excuse them on the day when, according to my gospel, God, through Jesus Christ, will judge the secret thoughts of all.” (Romans 2:14–16, NRSV)

    Again, the Law saves nobody. It just tells us we are sinful until we reject it enough to cauterize or conscience.

    “Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron;” (1 Timothy 4:2, KJV 1900)

  • http://www.remnantofgod.org/ John1429dotorg

    Why is this an issue with the professed Christian church? They preach that the Law of Jehovah was abolished on the Cross of Calvary! So why is this such a big deal?

    BTW. The Law of God (The Ten Commandments) was never abolished by the Great Lawgiver. It is preached to be done away with by those who hate its precepts and want to continue in sin. It is that very Law that gives the definition of sin and why ALL need a Saviour.

    • All In

      The civil and ceremonials laws were fulfilled in Christ, but the moral law remains. It the moral law that demonstrates everyone is a sinner and requires a Savior.

      • http://www.remnantofgod.org/ John1429dotorg

        Exactly, but the Christian church preached that Jesus did away will ALL Law, which would include the very Law that has been passed down from everlasting, the Ten Commandments. Preachers preach that it has been abolished and/or changed. They preach the 4th Commandment to be changed to the 1st day of the week, a day dedicated to honor Rome.

  • http://www.remnantofgod.org/ John1429dotorg

    No error accepted by the Christian world strikes more boldly against the authority of Heaven, none is more directly opposed to the dictates of reason, none is more pernicious in its results, than the modern doctrine, so rapidly gaining ground, that God’s law is no longer binding upon men. Every nation has its laws, which command respect and obedience; no government could exist without them; and can it be conceived that the Creator of the heavens and the earth has no law to govern the beings He has made?

    Suppose that prominent ministers were publicly to teach that the statutes which govern their land and protect the rights of its citizens were not obligatory—that they restricted the liberties of the people, and therefore ought not to be obeyed; how long would such men be tolerated in the pulpit?

    It would be far more consistent for nations to abolish their statutes, and permit the people to do as they please, than for the Ruler of the universe to annul His law, and leave the world without a standard to condemn the guilty or justify the obedient. Would we know the result of making void the law of God?

    The experiment has been tried.

    Terrible were the scenes enacted in France when atheism became the controlling power. It was then demonstrated to the world that to throw off the restraints which God has imposed is to accept the rule of the cruelest of tyrants. When the standard of righteousness is set
    aside, the way is open for the prince of evil to establish his power in the earth.

  • BarkingDawg

    From the Oklahoma State Cinstitution:

    No public money or property shall ever be appropriated,
    applied, donated, or used, directly or indirectly, for the use,
    benefit, or support of any sect, church, denomination, or system
    of religion, or for the use, benefit, or support of any priest,
    preacher, minister, or other religious teacher or dignitary, or
    sectarian institution as such.

    What part of that is everyone having a problem with?

    • Reason2012

      The same part they then violate this to redefine religious institutions (like marriage) and pass laws to establish this new State Religion that everyone must adhere to or face criminal charges. Seems you guys change your argument depending on what agenda you’re currently trying to promote and don’t even notice how you contradict each other.

      • BarkingDawg

        Marriage is a civil contract, not a religious institution.

        • Reason2012

          No, marriage existed long before any governments ever did, which proves you’re wrong. The marriage contract only dealt with legal aspects of what they never defined to begin with.

          • Unrepentant Atheist

            Do they tell you what religion you should get married under? Or any religion at all?

            Doesn’t sound like interference to me.

  • Reason2012

    (1) There is no such thing as “separation of church and state” in the Constitution. That phrase came from the time a Pastor wrote a letter to Jefferson expressing his fears that Jefferson would in some way restrict religious freedoms. In response to these fears, Thomas Jefferson wrote a letter back to indicate that he would in no way restrict the freedom of religious expression because he saw a wall of separation between church and state.

    So actually the phrase means the exact opposite of what a few claim it means: it re-iterates the First Amendment, that government shall make no laws prohibiting the free exercise of religious expression.

    (2) First Amendment: Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; And yet those who reject God demand the government establish its own denomination of Christianity with its own version of marriage. A violation of the First Amendment.

    (3) Congress/government also cannnot make a law prohibiting the free exercise thereof.

    People working at a public building can decide to, for example, put up Ten Commandment displays and no one can force them not to.

    Or they can decide NOT to put up Ten Commandment displays and no one can force them to.

    But in a Christian nation, the populace will be personally choosing to put up Ten Commandment displays often. Those that do not like this can start voting in a large number of people that believe differently and hope it changes.

    That’s liberty.

    That’s freedom.

    That’s the Constitution many died to create.

    That’s the United States of America.

    Start understanding the Constitution, the First Amendment and the lie about “separation to church and state” and take back our right to honor and worship God as people in positions of leadership personally choose and see fit to on a case by case basis.

    • Rebus Caneebus

      People working at a public building can decide to, for example, put up Ten Commandment displays and no one can force them not to.

      You seem to have overlooked that your side lost.

      By the way, public buildings are owned by all the public, not just the people working there.

      • Reason2012

        You seem to have overlooked that congress shall pass no laws PROHIBITING the FREE exercise of religious expression. It’s not free if it can only be expressed where certain haters give permission.

        By the way, the public gets to decide on a case by case basis what they feel like doing – not one hater deciding to claim it’s illegal for the freedom of religious expression for the rest of the country except where he gives permission.

        • Rebus Caneebus

          You seem to have overlooked that congress shall pass no laws PROHIBITING the FREE exercise of religious expression.

          Not at all. Putting monuments on public property isn’t “free exercise”, or the Satanists wouldn’t need to ask permission for their statue, they would just put it up.

          It’s not free if it can only be expressed where certain haters give permission.

          You mean Gov. Fallin, who said the Satanists would never get to put up their statue?

          By the way, the public gets to decide on a case by case basis what they feel like doing

          Unless it violates the constitution. Oh look, it did. Your side lost.

          • Reason2012

            Only putting up monuments where you give permission doesn’t make it free. You seem confused on what the word free means.

            Satanism is not a religion: it’s instead a hateful attack on Christianity.

            It would be just like someone putting up a monument to mock atheists – that’s not a religion either.

            It doesn’t violate the constitution for the public to have free exercise of religious expression.

            > Your side lost <

            Thank you for proving your motivation is hate, not freedom.

          • Rebus Caneebus

            Only putting up monuments where you give permission doesn’t make it free.

            Are you saying that anyone can put up religious monuments on public property? They can’t.

            You seem confused on what the word free means.

            You seem to think it means anyone can put up religious monuments on public property. You’re wrong.

            Satanism is not a religion: it’s instead a hateful attack on Christianity.

            It’s still a religion.

            It would be just like someone putting up a monument to mock atheists – that’s not a religion either.

            So what? It’s still protected by the first amendment.

            > Your side lost <

            Thank you for proving your motivation is hate, not freedom.

            How is it “hateful” to take down an illegal monument? Do you think 7 OK justices are hateful?

            It’s your side that’s trying to misuse MY government to push your religion on me.

  • MaryWaterton

    The problem is that Oklahoma allows it’s governor to appoint judges instead of electing them as is done in a states like Alabama and North Carolina. They are not accountable to the PEOPLE. The results speak for themselves.

    • SFBruce

      That’s not accurate. When there’s a vacancy on the Supreme Court, the Oklahoma Judicial Nominating Committee selects three names and submits those to the Governor, who appoints one. That new justice is then up for a retention vote in the next general state election. So if the people of Oklahoma want to turn out the justices who voted to remove this monument, they will have that opportunity.

  • hippiedad

    Considering there’s only 3 of the 10 commandments that are actual laws (stealing, killing and false witness) in this country, why would this be on public property? There’s plenty of other countries that are not predominantly christian that have the same laws against them as well. We’re not a christian country. Why can’t people understand this?

  • Doug Indeap

    Separation of church and state is a bedrock principle of our Constitution, much like the principles of separation of powers and checks and balances. In the first place, the Supreme Court has thoughtfully, authoritatively, and repeatedly decided as much; it is long since established law. In the second place, the Court is right. In the Constitution, the founders did not simply say in so many words that there should be separation of powers and checks and balances; rather, they actually separated the powers of government among three branches and established checks and balances. Similarly, they did not merely say there should be separation of church and state; rather, they actually separated them by (1) establishing a secular government on the power of “We the people” (not a deity), (2) according that government limited, enumerated powers, (3) saying nothing to connect that government to god(s) or religion, (4) saying nothing to give that government power over matters of god(s) or religion, and (5), indeed, saying nothing substantive about god(s) or religion at all except in a provision precluding any religious test for public office. Given the norms of the day (by which governments generally were grounded in some appeal to god(s)), the founders’ avoidance of any expression in the Constitution suggesting that the government is somehow based on any religious belief was quite a remarkable and plainly intentional choice. They later
    buttressed this separation of government and religion with the First Amendment, which affirmatively constrains the government from undertaking to establish religion or prohibit individuals from freely exercising their religions. The basic principle, thus, rests on much more than just the First Amendment.

    That the words “separation of church and state” do not appear in the text of the Constitution assumes much importance, it seems, to some who once mistakenly supposed they were there and, upon learning of their error, fancy they’ve solved a Constitutional mystery. The absence of the metaphorical phrase commonly used to name one of its principles, though, is no more consequential than the absence of other phrases (e.g., separation of powers, checks and balances, federalism) used to describe other undoubted Constitutional principles.

    To the extent that some nonetheless would like confirmation–in those very words–of the founders’ intent to separate government and religion, Madison and Jefferson supplied it. Some try to pass off the Supreme Court’s decision in Everson v. Board of Education as simply a misreading of Jefferson’s letter to the Danbury Baptists–as if that were the only basis of the Court’s decision. Instructive as that letter is, it played but a small part in the Court’s decision. Rather, the Court discussed the historical context in which the Constitution and First Amendment were drafted, noting the expressed understanding of Madison perhaps even more than Jefferson, and only after concluding its analysis and stating its conclusion did the Court refer–once–to Jefferson’s letter, largely to borrow his famous metaphor as a clever label or summary of its conclusion. The notion, often heard, that the Court rested its decision solely or largely on that letter is a red herring.

    It is important to distinguish between “individual” and “government” speech about religion since the First Amendment protects the former and constrains the latter. With respect to symbols and such, generally, if a monument is displayed “by” a government on its land, then that likely will be regarded as “government speech” to be assessed for compliance with the establishment clause. If a monument is displayed by a private person or group on government land, it may well be regarded as “individual speech” to be evaluated under the free exercise clause. In the latter case, the government, of course, cannot discriminate against particular religions and thus generally must allow other persons or groups equal opportunity to express their religious views on the government land. In sorting this out, much depends on the details of each case.

    The Constitution, including particularly the First Amendment, embodies the simple, just idea that each of us should be free to exercise his or her religious views without expecting that the government will endorse or promote those views and without fearing that the government will endorse or promote the religious views of others. By keeping government and religion separate, the Constitution serves to protect the freedom of all to exercise their religion. Reasonable people may differ, of course, on how these principles should be applied in particular situations, but the principles are hardly to be doubted. Moreover, they are good, sound principles that should be nurtured and defended, not attacked. Efforts to undercut our secular government by somehow merging or infusing it with religion should be resisted by every patriot.