Is faith a reliable way to know truth?

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Dan_473

Senior Member
Mar 11, 2014
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Because I just do. I also feel as if I have free will, when most likely I don't.
you're an intelligent, educated person. as a scientist, wouldn't you agree that "Because I just do" is reducible to genetic influence and cultural conditioning?

clearly not all humans are interested in cooperating all the time. Slightly different genes, different conditioning would result in humans that would likely kill, Imo.

suppose we alter the story slightly. Instead of a human, it's a very human-like robot on the island with you. Is it easier for you to kill now, to turn the robot off?
 

maxwel

Senior Member
Apr 18, 2013
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I think there is no free will, but I could be wrong.
So you made a lot of absolute truth claims, which you clearly did... and now after getting everyone into a debate, you're changing your position?


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Dino246

Senior Member
Jun 30, 2015
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I am seeking truth, and I am asking Christians to do the same.
I can appreciate that answer, but it seems to assume that Christians are wrong about fundamental truth(s).

I don't pretend to know everything, or even to be right about everything I believe, but I am very certain that Jesus Christ is both Creator and God, that He came in the flesh, was crucified, died and rose again.
 
Mar 23, 2016
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Dino246 said:
Renate, allow me to ask you a direct question: Are you seeking truth, regardless of where it leads you, or are you just seeking to debunk Christianity for some reason?
I am seeking truth, and I am asking Christians to do the same.
What do you mean you are "asking Christians to do the same"?
 
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So you made a lot of absolute truth claims, which you clearly did... and now after getting everyone into a debate, you're changing your position?


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Where did I say I was certain? I'm not changing my position, I'm just saying that I could be wrong. I know almost nothing for certain.
 
Jun 4, 2018
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you're an intelligent, educated person. as a scientist, wouldn't you agree that "Because I just do" is reducible to genetic influence and cultural conditioning?

clearly not all humans are interested in cooperating all the time. Slightly different genes, different conditioning would result in humans that would likely kill, Imo.
Yes, as I said earlier, I believe morality is the result of genetics and culture.

suppose we alter the story slightly. Instead of a human, it's a very human-like robot on the island with you. Is it easier for you to kill now, to turn the robot off?
Now that is an interesting question, because I actually study artificial intelligence. If we are assuming the robot does not have a consciousness, it would be easy to turn it off. If it does have a consciousness, I would treat it the same as a human. The difficulty is in telling wether the robot is conscious. Turns out that is pretty much impossible, so I would err on the side of it being conscious.
 
Mar 23, 2016
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Dan_473 said:
suppose we alter the story slightly. Instead of a human, it's a very human-like robot on the island with you. Is it easier for you to kill now, to turn the robot off?
Now that is an interesting question, because I actually study artificial intelligence. If we are assuming the robot does not have a consciousness, it would be easy to turn it off. If it does have a consciousness, I would treat it the same as a human. The difficulty is in telling wether the robot is conscious. Turns out that is pretty much impossible, so I would err on the side of it being conscious.
The robot is not going to use the food supply. I think I'd turn the robot off and on just to save power so the robot would be around a little longer ... just something to do while I'm stranded.
 

Studyman

Senior Member
Oct 11, 2017
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I am seeking truth, and I am asking Christians to do the same.

From observing your posts I find this to be somewhat dishonest. You recognize that you don't believe in the God of the Bible. You also recognize that you could be wrong.

Both assertions lead to the possibility that there may be truth in the Bible, you just can't see it or believe it.

It seems you do believe things written by others that you can't prove by science to be true. So believing in things that can't be seen, a central tenant of the Christian religion, is also practiced by you.

So as with many humans, you have a belief, even a religion, it's just that your belief is in a different invisible un-provable truth than mine.

Personally I know I can't "KNOW" the origin of the universe, and neither can you. You have your belief and I have mine.

It seems a little self righteous to "Know" I am wrong, when you admit to knowing there is no way to "know" you are right.

So what you seem to be doing on this Biblical discussion forum is trying to convert others to your religion. But for me, I don't believe in your god, I choose to believe in another. You are free to your beliefs that you can't prove, I should also be free to my beliefs that I can't prove.
 

maxwel

Senior Member
Apr 18, 2013
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Where did I say I was certain? I'm not changing my position, I'm just saying that I could be wrong. I know almost nothing for certain.
Changing your position and then denying it:

After quite vigorously informing us of your astuteness in philosophy, you're now going to pretend you understand neither the meaning nor the gravity of a truth claim?

You made truth claims.
You know perfectly well you made truth claims.
Now you have changed your position.

You can simply admit this, and blame it on whatever... or you can deny it and force me lay it all out for everyone.
If I have to lay it all out, then I'll also have to point out your intentional deception of changing your position and then lying about it.




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Dan_473

Senior Member
Mar 11, 2014
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The robot is not going to use the food supply. I think I'd turn the robot off and on just to save power so the robot would be around a little longer ... just something to do while I'm stranded.
suppose the robot is human-like enough to consume food. what it does with it you're not quite sure.

the difference between humans and robots is that humans are conscious. But is there objective evidence for that? to be honest, I'm not sure.

I'm not aware of any experiment that can demonstrate consciousness. I'm interested in finding out if there is one.
 
Mar 23, 2016
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suppose the robot is human-like enough to consume food. what it does with it you're not quite sure.

the difference between humans and robots is that humans are conscious. But is there objective evidence for that? to be honest, I'm not sure.

I'm not aware of any experiment that can demonstrate consciousness. I'm interested in finding out if there is one.
The robot can be turned off. I'd have the food. Turn the robot back on later. Win-Win.
 

Dan_473

Senior Member
Mar 11, 2014
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The robot can be turned off. I'd have the food. Turn the robot back on later. Win-Win.
you and I believe that humans are conscious. many atheists believe this also.

But do we believe this because we have evidence? Is that conclusion arrived at by the scientific method? Or is it something we believe?
 
Mar 23, 2016
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you and I believe that humans are conscious. many atheists believe this also.

But do we believe this because we have evidence? Is that conclusion arrived at by the scientific method? Or is it something we believe?
We can see the difference between a person who is conscious and a person who is unconscious so I suppose we would know by evidence.
 

Dan_473

Senior Member
Mar 11, 2014
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We can see the difference between a person who is conscious and a person who is unconscious so I suppose we would know by evidence.
an interesting point.

From the atheist point of view then, if the other person on the island is asleep, there is no difference between turning them off or turning the robot off.
 
Mar 23, 2016
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an interesting point.

From the atheist point of view then, if the other person on the island is asleep, there is no difference between turning them off or turning the robot off.
Well there is a difference between unconscious and dead.
 
Jun 4, 2018
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From observing your posts I find this to be somewhat dishonest. You recognize that you don't believe in the God of the Bible. You also recognize that you could be wrong.

Both assertions lead to the possibility that there may be truth in the Bible, you just can't see it or believe it.

It seems you do believe things written by others that you can't prove by science to be true. So believing in things that can't be seen, a central tenant of the Christian religion, is also practiced by you.

So as with many humans, you have a belief, even a religion, it's just that your belief is in a different invisible un-provable truth than mine.

Personally I know I can't "KNOW" the origin of the universe, and neither can you. You have your belief and I have mine.

It seems a little self righteous to "Know" I am wrong, when you admit to knowing there is no way to "know" you are right.

So what you seem to be doing on this Biblical discussion forum is trying to convert others to your religion. But for me, I don't believe in your god, I choose to believe in another. You are free to your beliefs that you can't prove, I should also be free to my beliefs that I can't prove.
There may be truth in the Bible, but I don't consider it likely. I'm asking people to examine why they believe what they believe, and whether those reasons are good enough.

What did I say I believe in that can't be proven by science to be true? Or false for that matter? I think the difference is that I recognize that I could be wrong, whereas so many Christians are unprepared to change their beliefs. If science proves me wrong, I will admit I was wrong and give up my wrong beliefs.
 
Jun 4, 2018
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Changing your position and then denying it:

After quite vigorously informing us of your astuteness in philosophy, you're now going to pretend you understand neither the meaning nor the gravity of a truth claim?

You made truth claims.
You know perfectly well you made truth claims.
Now you have changed your position.

You can simply admit this, and blame it on whatever... or you can deny it and force me lay it all out for everyone.
If I have to lay it all out, then I'll also have to point out your intentional deception of changing your position and then lying about it.




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So when did I change my position? I made truth claims, and gave reasons for those truth claims. Then you asked me if I was certain, and I said no, I could be wrong. How is that changing my position?
 
Mar 23, 2016
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I think the difference is that I recognize that I could be wrong, whereas so many Christians are unprepared to change their beliefs. If science proves me wrong, I will admit I was wrong and give up my wrong beliefs.
One problem is that when I use Scripture (which I believe to be true) to back up what I claim to be true, you dismiss it out of hand because it is Scripture (which you do not believe to be true).

Scripture itself tells me that if what I believe is untrue, then I am of all men most miserable.

However, I believe it is true. And I will continue to live my life in light of what I believe to be true ... even if science cannot prove the existence of God.
 

Marcelo

Senior Member
Feb 4, 2016
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... , whereas so many Christians are unprepared to change their beliefs. If science proves me wrong, I will admit I was wrong and give up my wrong beliefs.
Renate, you are right -- many Christians are unprepared to change their beliefs, but I regard myself as an exception -- I seek the truth. My 30 year-old son is an accomplished theist theologian (he does not believe in the deity of Christ) and I always listen carefully to his arguments. I encourage him to continue testing my belief and so far he has not been able to disprove the Bible.

If the universe were made up of a tennis ball size celestial body with two ants on it, this would be enough to prove that there was a creator (a God). If there is at least one creature there must be a creator. Now, just look at nature and at the universe and you'll come to the conclusion that there is a creator -- a supreme being.

Why would a supreme being create such an almost infinite universe and then keep himself in secrecy? No supreme being would do that!

Now examine all world religions and you'll see that Judaism and Christianity are the only religions where God reveals Himself to humanity.
 
Mar 23, 2016
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My brother-in-law is a self proclaimed atheist. Over the 30+ years I have known him, he and I have had wonderful discussions about our beliefs.

One time I was talking to him about the fruit of the Spirit (love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, meekness, faith, temperance).

Because natural men (those who are unbelievers, those who are not born again) have emotions which appear to be similar to the fruit of the Spirit (phileo love as opposed to agape love; happiness as opposed to true joy which only comes from a close relationship with Father God; periods where there is absence of conflict as opposed to the peace that passes all understanding which only our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ brings to us; etc.), my brother-in-law insisted that he knew exactly what I was talking about.

I explained to him that he did not because was not born again; his spirit was not yet renewed and he could not experience the fruit of the Spirit; that human emotion could not be compared to fruit of the Spirit.

He thought about it, and my brother-in-law finally had to admit that he did not know and he had never experienced the love of God which fills the heart of the believer; the effervescent joy and the peace which floods our soul even in the midst of turmoil.

Yes, these are the spiritual blessings the believer has in his or her life. These things are freely given to us by God. So, so sad that there are people who do not know the manifold wisdom of our glorious Father God.
 
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