T Nation

Why Doesn't God Communicate With Us Anymore?


#1

I asked the following rhetorical question in another thread:

"I find it incredulous that the alleged Almighty (as he has been described) has not stayed in contact with us and/or left behind a clearer record not subject to any dispute (certainly possible for the "Almighty" as He has been described."

The response, which the person later refused to clarify, was as follows:

"It is your assumption that a clearer better way is available to God. But, as I said to you in one of our earlier posts God (the Father) spoke to his people directly. Did it help? They still sinned and turned away in droves. "

Now, I understand perfectly that the reply is claiming that God spoke directly to "his people" based on OT scripture. In fact, the Jewish faith makes it a point to distinguish between "national revelation" (the claim that God spoke to an entire people) and "personal revelation" (the claim that God incarnated and spoke through Jesus).

I'm not interested in scriptural arguments as "proof" that God communicated directly with man. I want to know why God later chose personal revelation (assuming he did speak directly to man as described in the OT) and why God has chosen to remain silent since, unless of course we want to consider other claims of personal revelation - in which case Mohammed, Joseph Smith, et als., claims become fair game.

If God wants his "children" to follow his law, and he understand that there is much confusion, deception and lies regarding what the law is, why does he not simply "speak" or communicate with us now?

I'd like to hear some earnest opinions.

As for my "assumption that there is a clearer better way" for God to communicate with man, yes I am assuming there is a more effective means of communication available to the Almighty. If since the written word, we can within reason, attribute certain quotes to certain historical men, why then could not God leave behind the "law" in a manner that would not leave it to dispute and possible corruption?

If God is all-powerful, is he playing one big trick on us, knowing that his alleged word would be corrupted, that other religions and beliefs would be spawned, and that we would be at the mercy of other men? If it's not a trick, then why communicate with us at all, knowing it would be corrupted?

It's one thing to have "faith" in God after God has spoken to you and revealed himself. It's quite another to have "faith" in the MEN that recorded the alleged "law" and to have "faith" that they were not delusional or corrupt.

Let's see if the religious among us, can be guided by that which they claim they have "faith" in, and provide a thoughtful reply consistent with their beliefs.


#2

Oh and another question:

If national revelation did indeed occur as stated in the OT, and "people still sinned anyway", why would God choose a less direct means of communication thereafter (personal revelation)?


#3

Are you looking for the response to be a Christian perspective?


#4

In short, the Bible teaches that today we have the holy spirit where before they didnâ??t, that we are spoken to in spirit.

The reason for the change in tone is the redeeming sacrifice in Jesus.


#5

The cool thing is that in quantum there is wiggle room in the laws of physics. It is literally possible for a god to manipulate things like electrons without breaking physical laws. Could manipulation of electrons in your brain be a physically possible form of revelation or communication with god?


#6

Dont know if that helps.


#7

Thanks for the response DD. I'm looking for an earnest response, regardless of religion but I am curious about the Jewish and Christian perspective because one day, according to the Bible, God stood atop a mountain and directly communicated to an entire nation. And then his alleged communication ceased, except thru alleged incarnation in human flesh (disputed by even the jews that make claim to national revelation and were coincidentally around the time of jesus) which was later recorded by MAN.

Why allegedly speak to a nation one day and never again? And why only the Jews? Are we not all god's children? What special relationship can the Jews realistically claim to God that no other race of people at the time can similarly claim?

The President gives a national address. He is not almighty. Yet when he gives his national address, there can be no dispute at to whether he spoke, and what his exact words were. Why does not God give the equivalent of a "national address" now? Why leave behind an alleged record, to be scribed by man, that He knows can later be disputed, argued and corrupted?

Why not direct communication with his children?


#8

Ever hear a voice in your head telling you that what you are about to do is a bad idea?

I believe the communication is in the form of what we call a "conscience".


#9

Well, first I would say that maybe he did that because it was sufficient. Something like 4 billion people in the world believe in that god.

For me, the mystery is a lot of the allure.

But I think there are Decent Christian answers.

  1. Blessed are those who believe and have not seen. So, if he did that he'd take away some of our on possible reward.

  2. The Bible also lays out that the greater knowledge and truth you have the greater your responsibility and the harsher your possible judgment. Essentially, if the father were still personally present and apparent to us, we would have no excuse for sin. Look back at the old testament to the way god treated those same people who got to personally converse with him. If he were to appear today, we should then expect the harsh judgment of one who has no excuse and no saving grace in Jesus. To remove faith would be to make us unworthy of god.

I'm willing to bet a lot of Christians take most of the bible as allegory anyway.

But take all this with a grain of salt from a guy who is more Christian philosopher than Christian religious.


#10

Rational conversation about the past/present/future necessarily assumes uniformitarianism--the notion that the physical laws under which our universe can be observed to operate today have always existed and will continue to exist. In other words: it has been my experience that apples fall down, not up. Though I have no direct evidence of it, I must assume that it was so even in prehistory.

When we marvel at the size of the rocks at Stonehenge, we don't say "well perhaps someone lifted them with their mind Charles Xavier-style and just walked them over here and set them up like a giant game of mind-Tetris." I cannot prove that this isn't how Stonehenge was built; but I MUST assume that it wasn't, since no man or woman has been observed to be able to lift things with his/her mind in MY world. If uniformitarianism is not assumed, intelligent postulation is lost in an infinitely expansive hurricane of absurd possibilities.

It is through the lens of uniformitarianism that I evaluate history and theology. The claims are extraordinary: talking snakes, God walking with humans, celestial bodies frozen in their orbit in the sky, walking on water, resurrecting the dead...the list goes on. Nothing of the sort has ever been observed in MY world--people live and toil and die and no fireworks light up the sky save for the ones built in factories and perfectly explicable by science. I cannot reasonably accept that such miraculous phenomena as are abundant in the Old/New Testaments were for some reason only present in the distant past. Why did they cease? Why does God no longer communicate with us? He is all-powerful, is He not?

Thankfully, uniformitarianism provides me with an answer which I decided long ago was perfectly satisfactory: people make shit up. I see it all the time. I do it myself some times. For as long as human beings have existed, so have lies. Misdirection. Complete and utter bullshit. MY world is full of it, the world of Aquinas was full of it, the world of Jesus was full of it, the world of David was full of it. That to me seems to explain the miracles perfectly.

The stories are either true or false. In MY world, miracles do not exist, but lies do. I have no reason to believe that in the past it was any different. Therefore, the most logical explanation for ancient stories about miracles is that they were made up by people seeking power.


#11

My people were picked because we were the least of all the peoples in the world, and our success and survival is evidence of His existance and his promises.

Yes.

None. We were "chosen." We were not "special" or "better" or anything but "chosen."

Had nothing to do with us.


#12

Well, it's not like He didn't already write down how to communicate directly.

Read the fucking instruction manual.


#13

So you want direct revelation? You even admit in the OT that 'people still turned in droves' away from God. Plus where does free will come into the equation if you have direct proof? And final point, if you want to see proof of God you simply have to honestly look for it. I will NOT answer anymore in this thread because I refuse to explain things to people which walk around in the dark and choose that route.

Tell me where the complex eye comes from, without making huge leaps and bounds. We have a lamprey then some animals have different eyes like the sharks and other predators. Certain species of animals like many raptors can perceive great distances and then other species see worse than we do. And how many genetically related animals follow an obvious evolution to the equivalent higher and more evolved species. So because we 'evolved' from apes tell me the number of different base pairs we have from the orangutan? And it makes logical sense that number evolved in one quick transition with no obvious line of fossils to back the claim? Finally, how many animals ANY species walk vertically and have our complex structure of knees with the complex network of tendons, muscle points and blood vessels with the nerves that impregnate the entire structure? One species is all I ask for.

I'll try to keep this as concise and clean as possible:
How do primates teach their young? Then how do we train our best friends, the canine? Now realize how we interact with our children. We train infants and the canine much the same way until the child grows and develops. However primates do NOT. Why do you suppose that is?

If these points are not clear then I apologize. If you do not have a clear answer with every single point, could it be that science will never be able to prove the gap and leap you must make. In fact to think we evolved from apes, that takes leaps and bounds of its own. That takes blind faith. Why not see the obvious truth. God is the answer IMHO. Look for the truth from a logical sense.


#14

Biological Evolution is known beyond any doubt to exist in the natural world. Drug-resistant strains of viral pathogens are directly and unequivocally the product of evolutionary change. This is not theory; it is fact.

Why would we assume that such change is exclusive to harmful pathogens?

Humans and chimpanzees share between 95 and 99 percent of their DNA. Why would differences in "the way they teach their young" make it unbelievable that the two are ancestrally related? The whole point of evolution is that we CHANGE over time--change the way we think, change the way we raise children.

More important than these two points is that, in the scientific community, there is essentially universal agreement that the evidence for evolution is overwhelming. They are smarter than you and they certainly know more than you on the topic. When you get in an airplane, you implicitly express a high degree of trust that the scientific community that came up with the equations and theories that made aviation possible knew what the fuck they were doing. The biologists and chemists that support the theory of evolution simply know more about it than you do. And they say in one unified voice that the evidence for it is overwhelming. So fuck your skepticism.

But none of this really matters because this thread has nothing to do with evolution.


#15

Oh shit. Both sides of the "evolution proves things about god" argument are beyond retarded.


#16

I dont know, if we assume an all knowing benevolent designer, I would have some questions about the human knee, eyes and throat.

Sloppy, to say the least.


#17

Suggestions as to state of benevolence and all knowingness isn't proof and has nothing to do with the possibility of existence.


#18

It doesn't prove anything about God. It does, however, reduce the story of Adam and Eve to a fairy tale with only allegorical worth at best.

The point is that, regardless of what the theory of evolution says about God's nature or existence, it has the support of the scientific community. To deny evolution is to swim against an overwhelmingly intelligent and informed current.


#19

No no no no. If you accept the possibility of a creator as something outside the bounds of the physical universe, it doesn't do anything to the story of adam and eve. If something exists that brought all the universe into being, it is entirely bogus to claim that the study of the boundaries of the universe can say anything about that creation.

Creation happening at the big bang or yesterday are logically equivalent. It doesn't make it more plausible longer ago or less plausible the more recent.

A creation is by definition outside of the boundaries of science, if you are going to discuss it, you must accept that premise. If you aren't accepting that premise (which you aren't) then you aren't discussing the creation story of the Bible or any other creation story.

They are entirely separate things.


#20

BUT if this is just going to turn into an evolution/creation debate, I'm done with the thread.