The Instigator
CJ193
Pro (for)
The Contender
WOLF.J
Con (against)

Christianity

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Debate Round Forfeited
WOLF.J has forfeited round #5.
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Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 2/13/2018 Category: Religion
Updated: 5 months ago Status: Debating Period
Viewed: 334 times Debate No: 108011
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (5)
Votes (0)

 

CJ193

Pro

WOLF.J I see you have been questioning religion. Ask me your questions, and I will try to answer them to the best of my ability. I am not a "religious" person, but I am a follower of Christ. This would not be a debate, rather a conversation. I am not an expert by any means, but am willing to try and answer any questions you may have. I sincerely hope you accept. CJ193
WOLF.J

Con

Thanks for reaching out, I accept. Q1, why would god permit natural disasters and famines?
Debate Round No. 1
CJ193

Pro

Wolf.J, I am glad to see that you accepted.
Full disclosure I have university classes all day, so my responses might not be as timely as you are used to.
Please note that I will refer to God as a he as that is how I can best conceptualize God.

Why does God allow natural disasters to happen?
God does not want bad things to happen, but he does use and allow them to occur.
In the Bible there are 3 predominant reasons as to why God allows natural disasters and bad things to happen.
I'm not sure what you know about the Bible, so I might be a bit repetitive and overly explain some things.

1.When Lucifer (AKA Satan) and his followers disobeyed against God, Satan and his crew were cast out of Heaven and into Hell, but somehow, he still had access to the earth and could go before God in Heaven. (Don't ask me to explain that one because I have no idea :)) Anyway, after Eve was tempted and Adam and her both ate from the forbidden tree of Good and Evil, the earth, and human kind, fell from perfection in the sight of God and Satan became the ruler of this world (2 Corinth. 4:4) (God is the rightful ruler of the world, but when Eve fell for the temptation Satan was able to hijack the world) and sin/evil entered the world. Since Satan, in the Bible, is referred a thief who comes to steal, kill and destroy (John 10:10) Natural disasters are a form of destruction, and Satan does have the ability to destroy. So, one reason God allows natural disasters to happen is because the world is affected by sin and Satan, and Satan does cause destruction. (One example of Satan causing destruction in the Bible is the Story of Job - I know this story doesn't really have anything to do with weather, but it's just an example)

2.In the Bible there are some instances of God using severe weather phenomenon to judge the nations and to cleanse the land. The most famous of these is probably Noah's flood and the coming judgement of the world mentioned in the book of Revelations, where God will once again destroy the earth with fire to purify it of evil once and for all. (That is a entirely different topic) However, even though in the Bible God does show that he will use the weather as a form of judgement, he more often allows for a bad ruler to rise up and take control of the nation until the people of that nation of their free will return to principles laid out in the Bible and return ultimately to God. (Think of story of King Ahab, or when the Babylonians conquered Israel, or when the Assyrians conquered Israel) Nonetheless, God will forsake a nation and allow judgement to happen in different forms if the people of that nation chose to reject God and his principles, but like in the story of Hosea, even when a nation/people deserves judgement, God more often than not shows mercy towards them out of his love towards the nation and people.

3.Romans 8:20-23 (NKJV) For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of Him who subjected it in hope; 21because the creation itself also will be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the glorious liberty of the children of God. 22 For we know that the whole creation d groans and labors with birth pangs together until now. 23 Not only that, but we also who have e the firstfruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, eagerly waiting for the adoption, the redemption of our body. " I put this verse in its entirety so that you can read it with context. When creation (the world, humanity, all of creation) fell from perfection, creation began to groan for redemption. And as it says in verse 22 the groans of creation are like that of labor pains during childbirth. The earth is part of creation, so it groans and goes through pain along with the rest of creation. Like with childbirth the groans of the earth get more intense as time goes by until the earth itself is redeemed (bought back) into perfection (judgement of evil by fire in Revelations). Could not these groans come across in the form of severe weather? Famines? Earthquakes? Floods? I hope this one makes sense.

The fantastically good news, though, is that God can and does intervene with weather to save humanity from destruction. I know this because in Mark 4:35-41 and in Mathew 8:23-27 (Same story, different account) Jesus (God in human body form) supernaturally spoke to a terrific storm that was occurring , the weather obeyed him, and the storm stopped. One modern example (I sincerely believe it to be a modern example) is with what happened with Hurricane Irma in the USA this past year. By all accounts Hurricane Irma was supposed to decimate Florida and the southern States, and I strongly believe that when Christians, all around the USA and probably world prayed, God intervened and pushed it so that it would not cause a decimation to Florida. According to Weather.com out of all the possible paths Irma could have taken, in the last days before it made landfall it shifted to the least possible destructive path it could have taken. Did it still cause some destruction, yes, but it didn"t cause as much damage as it was by all accounts supposed to. You might call it luck, but I would call it supernatural providence and interference. Here is the article https://weather.com...

I hope this answered your first question.
Have a great rest of your day,
Caitlyn Stewart
WOLF.J

Con

Yes thanks, I can see where you're coming from, and it makes sense. Next i'd like to know bout the catholic-protestant conflict, I've completely forgotten what the beef is about.
Debate Round No. 2
CJ193

Pro

The Catholic/Protestant conflict is a hard topic to reply to because there is so much history surrounding it. To best understand it though, it is best to understand some of the history of the early Church.

After the death, burial, and resurrection of Jesus Christ, and the baptism of the Holy Spirit fell on Jerusalem, in the upper room. (For more context/entire story read John 12 " Acts 2) After that happened, the Disciples of Jesus began teaching/telling the people all over the region of the gospel (good news) of Jesus. They told of how he came to the earth to fulfil the laws God had revealed to Moses and how he was assigned to come to the earth to be the perfect sinless sacrifice that would restore and redeem a guilty sin-filled world of people back to the holy, righteous, and perfect God. * (View side note at bottom) As Christianity spread and grew the Jews and Romans (they occupied Israel at the time) decided that it must be stopped. The Jews were determined that it must be stopped because it impacted the money flow to the Synagogue, and the Romans were determined that the message of Jesus must be stopped because it painted Jesus as God, and in the Roman world the emperor was God. So, they teamed up. In reality though it was a demonic attack against God's plan for the redemption of humanity. I"m sure they hired numerous people to persecute, jail, and kill the early Christians, but in the Bible, we hear of one named Saul (he was a Jew and a Roman citizen). Saul was notorious for how he went about persecuting Christians, but one day, on the road to a city called Damascus, God caused Saul to see a blinding bright light, which caused Saul to go blind. In the moments that followed, (I am paraphrasing) God Said "Saul, Saul why are you persecuting me?" Saul asked "who are you lord?" God responded, "I am Jesus whom you persecute." Saul then said, "Lord what do you want me to do?" God then told Saul to go to the city and he would meet someone. God then gave Ananias (one of the Christians in Damascus) a dream to go and meet Saul, pray for his sight to be restored, baptize him in the Holy Spirit. Saul then began telling people about Jesus. Later, his name changed to Paul. (the story is found at Acts 9 and continues in Acts Chapter 13) Paul is accredited with writing 13 books in the New Testament.
In the Roman empire Christianity was recognized as a different "religion" than Judaism during the 1st century. In 300 A.D. the Parthians adopted Christianity as their state religion, but Christians weren"t granted the right to freely exercise their faith and worship in the Roman empire until Emperor Constantine in 313 A.D. made it the state religion. The Romans had an original state church, and then it split into a couple of different denominations, one of them being the Catholic church. The Catholic church was the primary form of church in the west up until Martin Luther nailed his 95 theses to the door of the Catholic Church. (Here is a list of his 95 theses http://www.luther.de...) One reason Martin Luther was appalled at the Church of his day was because they were selling indulgences (essentially pieces of paper the church sold were something along the line of since the pope forgives you, God now forgives you too because you purchased this piece of paper.) Martin Luther knew that in the Bible the only way for God to forgive you was not by doing good deeds or buying pieces of paper, but by grace through faith in the finished work of Jesus and that it was the gift of God (Ephesians 2:8-10). Following Martin"s act of rebellion against the established state church, the church began to split off into different denominations. Everyone thought that their ideas were right, and the others were wrong, hence, conflict ensued. (I might be off some on this)
The thing is, is that Jesus never called his followers to be a part of a denomination, or a particular sect of theology. He called them, and still calls people, to be in personal friendship/relationship. People have turned Christianity into a religion. God never intended it to be one. God intended "Christianity" to be a one on one relationship between the creator and the created. Sometimes I feel as though Christians forget that. God wants to have friends just as much as we do. Don"t get me wrong though, in the Bible it does say that believers are part of the family of God and goes on to say something along the lines of as Christians we should commune among each other, but in the spectrum of eternity it is not about how good you think you"ve been, how many times you"ve gone to church, or how many "good deeds" you have done. That is not what it is all about. It is about what have you believed about Jesus and what he did for you. I don"t mean for this to sound churchy, it just sometimes comes across that way. God does love you, and he wants and is the friend that sticks closer than a brother (or any family member) (Proverbs 18:24) God cares for you. God cares about what is going on, your heart breaks, fears, depressions, your successes, your dreams, your desires, your everything. (Psalms 56 particularly verse 8)
You don"t have to answer this question if you don"t want to. What do you believe about Jesus?
I am not trying to convert you or anything, because that is a personal decision between you and God, but someone will ask you someday, so why not today.
(Side note: One way to picture this is to think of a large deep chasm. Before Adam and Eve originally sinned, the chasm was non-existent, and man could commune with God. But after they sinned a chasm formed between God and man because a perfect God cannot have imperfection near him. So, on one side of the chasm is the world and all the people in it and God on the other side. No matter what the people do they cannot make a bridge to the other side. God, knowing what was going on, did not want to be separated from the people he created for eternity, so he sent Jesus to be the sacrifice that would create a bridge between the people and God, so they could commune once again. Therefore, it is crucial to believe Jesus was who he says he was so that there is a bridge. Or, one other way to picture it is that God is the perfect judge. Since, all of man kind has sinned against God by breaking God"s law (sinned " Romans 3:23 and 6:23), every human is guilty, and seeing as God is the perfect judge in this scenario, he cannot and will not let the guilty go unpunished, whether that be jail time, bail, etc. However, because God loves the people he created, and does not want to punish them even though they deserve it, he sent Jesus to take the punishment for people and be the intermediary between them and God. As a believer and follower of Christ, when you are being judged (in the scenario) God doesn't see a guilty person who has broken the law. He sees Jesus, the intermediary who paid the fine and did the time for you to be free and not guilty. Again though, it is crucial to believe Jesus was who he says he was, or God would still see you as a guilty person deserving of punishment. Either Jesus was who he says he was, of he was the greatest con man/liar to ever walk the earth. Believing in Jesus does not give a person a license to sin as much as a person wants to. The Bible says to take up your earthly desires daily and crucify them so that you live like Jesus daily (Luke 9:23 And he said to them all, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow me). Anyway, back to the main topic)
Have a great rest of your day,
CJ193
WOLF.J

Con

Thank you for the information provided, i think im gonna end the debate here as im quite busy, but il DM u in the future n we can continue discussing religion.
Debate Round No. 3
CJ193

Pro

OK, no worries. Feel free to reach out with any further questions.
CJS193
WOLF.J

Con

Alright I have a quick query, why is God waiting until the last minute to save mankind, what's the point? Furthermore what's Christianitys stance on the meaning of life.?
Debate Round No. 4
CJ193

Pro

Wolf.J,
Interesting Questions. I am not fully sure on those questions, but this is my best shot.
Why is God waiting until the last minute to save mankind?

God is not waiting till the last minute to save mankind. He already has, through the death, burial, and resurrection of the perfect sacrifice Jesus. All mankind must do is receive the gift of God (salvation) Romans 10:8-13 (Please refer to my past posts). A somewhat better question would be, Why has not God ended everything already?

There are a couple of reason.

There are prophesies that were written thousands of years before Jesus, and those in the book of Revelation, that must come to fruition before the end of the world. God gave his word in those prophesies that they will happen, and since God cannot lie, they must occur. God has his own timeline of events, but only God knows the time and the hour that is the end of the world. (Matthew 24:36-44)

God is allowing mankind a chance to respond to his free gift of salvation. Romans 1:16-24 (I am posting this in full for context. Also, it is in the English Standard Version b/c it is easier to understand in terms of modern English) "16 For I am not ashamed of the gospel, for it is the power of God for salvation to everyone who believes, to the Jew first and also to the Greek. 17 For in it the righteousness of God is revealed from faith for faith, as it is written, "The righteous shall live by faith." 18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who by their unrighteousness suppress the truth. 19 For what can be known about God is plain to them, because God has shown it to them. 20 For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made. So, they are without excuse. 21 For although they knew God, they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking, and their foolish hearts were darkened. 22 Claiming to be wise, they became fools, 23 and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man and birds and animals and creeping things.24 Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, 25 because they exchanged the truth about God for a lie and worshiped and served the creature rather than the Creator, who is blessed forever! Amen." In this passage it says that God has revealed himself to all mankind (Past, Present, and Future) so that they are without excuse when God's judgement of sin comes. If God reveals himself to all, then he must allow them, of their free will, to decide how they will respond to his gift. This can get a lot more theologistic, but in simple terms God is giving everybody the same chance to respond to his salvation through Jesus.

Something interesting on this topic, but not fully on topic is some of the History of the Native Americans. If you YouTube Chief Joseph Riverwind, in many of his interviews he goes over the Native's history of God in Native American tribes. (A lot of these interviews are on the channel Now You See TV. Overall this channel has a lot of conspiracy theories on it and is a weird channel. I do not condone the channel.) However, Chief Riverwind knows the history well, and I do believe he tries to present that history truthfully in these interviews, even if it is on a strange platform.
I hope this answers your question on this.

What's Christianity's stance on the meaning of life?

I cannot answer this question for all Christians out there as it is different for every individual. There is no one size fits all stance on this.

For me though, the meaning of life means how can I live each day to be more and more like Jesus and impact someone for the better and for the kingdom of God.

Meaning of life often leads to the question of what is my purpose/why am I here. It might seem a bit cliche, but the Bible says to be doers of the word of God (James 1:22-27) and to follow after Jesus, and how he lived his life (Luke 9:23-27). Therefore, as a follower of Christ it is my purpose to strive to be more like him in actions, character, and in word. That is my meaning of life.

As this is the last post in the discussion for me, I thought I would give you a couple of people to check out that might help answer some of your questions. Disclaimer: I do not agree with everything they say.
Planetshakers (Definitely check them out, they have some amazing music)
Todd White
Lawson Perdue
David Barton (He is a historian that specializes on American History, so I'm not sure how relevant he would be to you, but he goes over how religion has impacted American history and politics.)

Feel free to DM me with any other questions.

Have a great rest of your day,
CJ193
This round has not been posted yet.
Debate Round No. 5
5 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 5 records.
Posted by WOLF.J 5 months ago
WOLF.J
Alright thank you for your interesting points, they were enjoyable and stimulating reads. I will DM when free if I have any further inquiries.
Posted by WOLF.J 6 months ago
WOLF.J
No issues as such, just believe in God over religion.
Posted by Aleksa_Stojkovic 6 months ago
Aleksa_Stojkovic
WOLF.J - I am always available for a debate on Christianity, if you have issues with it
Posted by CJ193 6 months ago
CJ193
OK, thanks for sharing that!
Posted by WOLF.J 6 months ago
WOLF.J
So I have a copy of gideons, and have read a first few chapters. That's how much I am aware of Christianity.
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