Pat 1: People as a whole are far from perfect-I would propose that the vast majority of us understand the basis of many teachings that would make our lives more pleasant and amicable (golden rule in particular) but fail to apply it when tempers rise. It is definitely easier to speak on theory than to practice it.
Pat 2: The first sentence is fair-I was just referring to what was proposed in this thread as one reason.
In terms of the “ridiculousness” I reference, I’m speaking mainly on some of the (in my mind) overly restrictive/antiquated tenants set forth in the Old Testament (dietary for instance). Incredibly large was hyperbole-it is indeed vastly outweighed by either neutral or positive messages. I got caught up in my end of the discussion.
In regards to my religious beliefs-I have read the Bible in its entirety once and specific sections more often. From my reading/readings I have found more value personally in approaching it (Old Testament in particular) in such a way that I take the lessons but not the literal words themselves to heart. For me the over-arching messages remain the same but the minutia I run into day to day falls into the realm of the mind and teachings God has given us.[/quote]
I never ever post in this section and don’t know what kind of political or worldly spin I can put on my beliefs. I’m sure that I will be ignored or ripped to shreds but so be it.
We are all far from perfect in our behavior. The difference between Christians and people that aren’t is forgiveness. Yes, some do struggle with maintaining their temper. We all are war with flesh but if you can learn to control your tongue, you can control your body. Also, being Christian is not a feel-good club. We should be aware that we will be persecuted for what we believe and that our reward comes after this life on earth.
The Old Testament is not null and void; you should be familiar with it as its teachings should still be known. Having said that, we are living during the time when New Testament rules apply - walk in love.
The Bible is living Word and should constantly be read. I would always pray before I read that God would reveal His glory to me and teach me through his Word. He never failed me. As you mature in spirit, you will understand more. Honestly, it breaks my heart that you reject the guide that He has given to you. Good deeds are not what gain you entry to heaven. [/quote]
You would take flak from people that are more fundamentalist from your positions. Likely some from nonbelievers but most of them are going to just state that they think your premises are untrue.
Do you really think Christians are more forgiving than others? My personal experience has been that its the same or in the other direction.
As well if you think Christians are the persecuted minority in Murrica you are deluded.
For a delve into evolutionary biology it is possible(I’d say likely but I’m not going to quibble) that things like empathy were not in existence or as developed 2k years ago as they are now. Simply from reading the documents of the time as historical records. So very easily behaviors considered abhorrent today by and large would be not abnormal 2k years ago.
By forgiveness, I meant that Christians have been forgiven by God if they have asked him for forgiveness. People, including Christians, can be unforgiving. That prevents them from maturing spiritually however and prevents them from having a greater relationship with Christ.
Christians are persecuted for their beliefs in every country. There are other groups that are persecuted but Christians are included.
By abhorrent behavior, do you mean the difference between the “more violent” Old Testament as opposed to the New?