MoghLiechty2 wrote:Weezer wrote:Phill wrote:So, I think - in the case of Christianity - there is enough evidence to consider my faith rational. Faith doesn't exist in a vacuum - if, for example, the gospels were conclusively found to be hoaxes then I'd have to rethink... but I very much doubt that's going to happen.
I take from this that you take your faith is primarily based on christian religious texts because if they are disproved you would loose faith. What is it that makes christian religious texts more valid than say Hindu texts or Islamic texts. Since religious texts by there very nature conflict with religious texts from other religion how can you know that yours is in any way superior?
I believe that both I and Phill would be willing to make the claim that Christian texts (i.e. the 66 cononical books of the Bible) are exceptional in the world of religious texts because they are able to withstand a substantial amount of scrutiny in comparison to any others. I think he and I would both agree that the study of religious texts to determine truthfulness should be approached just like any other field of study. For some reason it seems like a lot of people aren't willing to apply the same methods of rational inquiry that are commonly applied to other topics, in particular other historical events. If we don't cop out by just stating that it's impossible to figure out which religion is correct because there isn't a correct religion, then of course we wouldn't be able to consider any religion more valid than another. However, as many Christians such as myself do, we assume that it's possible for one religion to be correct, and we have determined that Christianity of the Bible is the most historically, philosophically, and theologically accurate. (Putting aside life stories... I mean you could say, 'But ML, haven't you been a 'Christian' of sorts all your life?' Yes, but I would be willing to reject my beliefs if they were found to be false. I've gone (or are going through) through the same search for truth that anyone else has and is.)
I (and I'm sure Phill) are fully willing to make the claim that the Bible is the correct religious text, and would be willing to defend against any specific scrutiny proposed.
I agree with setzer about the miracles being evidence against the Bible being 100% true. One question I have is about the contradictions that are apparent in the various books of the New Testament. There are a lot of contradictions but I'll name a few:
First the writers of the gospel couldn't even agree when jesus was born. According to Mathew 2:1:
Herod became the king of the Jews in 37 BCE and ruled until he died in 4 BCE. So this would indicate that Jesus was born between 37 and 4 BCE.Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, behold, wise men from the East came to Jerusalem
But according to Luke 2:1-7:
This indicates that Jesus was born during the first census while Judea was under the rule of Quirinius. But the census was initiated by Quirinius in 6 CE, how do you reconcile this difference?1 And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. 3 So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city. 4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife,[a] who was with child. 6 So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
While at first glance the exact date of Jesus's birth doesn't seem to matter but if Jesus was born before the census as Mathew seems to indicate then why would Joseph make the journey to Bethlehem with his pregnant wife? Why wouldn't he just stay at home for the birth? While if Luke is correct then if Jesus was born after Herod's death then there would be no need for Jesus to flee to Egypt to escape Herod's wrath as is depicted in Mathew 2:13 and there wouldn't have been the slaughter of the innocents because Herod wouldn't be alive to order the slaughter.