"The key to understanding the Bible is to look for Jesus in the Bible. Jesus is the hero of the Bible. If you read the Bible and don't find Jesus, re-read it! The Bible has one hero, His name is Jesus; one villain, that is Satan; one problem, that is sin; one solution, that is salvation. That is what the Bible is all about." -Dr. Adrian Rogers

Saturday, March 12, 2011

JD's Response (8/31/2010)

Hey Tommy, thanks for reaching out. I should apologize; you were clearly expecting a response from me and I didn't bother to follow up on your last comment. Honestly looking at the tone of my last comment I thought I came off a bit pushy and thought it best to leave you be. But since you asked, I'd be glad to follow up on your question. The answer you gave me last time, while heartfelt, wasn't very compelling. I've run into this before, and most telling was your point that God can't be resolved intellectually. What I got from that was, "Seek with an open mind, but check your hard questions and skepticism at the door, let the message wash over you, and God will grant you a compelling subjective experience". The short answer is that these kind of subjective experiences are just not valid for anyone else. The long answer is that I was once a Christian and thought I felt these things, that is, the presence of God, but as I became an adult and tried to justify these beliefs and experiences I realized they weren't anything that couldn't be explained reasonably and naturally. At this point I was earnestly seeking God but was no longer credulous. I had learned about concepts like consensus effect and confirmation bias and could recognize these in my own thinking now. Mind you this was Bible-based Christianity I'm talking about. Some might claim I wasn't truly saved but that's another discussion. Suffice it to say it was a difficult process but I don't regret it. So, while I'm glad you shared that with me and your intentions are heartfelt - thank you - It wasn't something I could simply take at face value. It's not a question of being unwilling to leave a sinful lifestyle (trust me, my lifestyle is pretty mundane) although I understand why you might take such an approach. It's that one can't discard an intellectual approach altogether - to do so opens you up to all kinds of poor reasoning and conclusions that are valid for no one else. Simply feeling something very very strongly is not infallible. Anyway, that's what I got. Hope that wasn't too much of a mouthful :). As far as Christian blogs go I think you have a nice one that has a lot to offer other Christians and I don't wish to despoil it. I'm not out to convert anyone; I really only speak up to correct misconceptions about atheists since I am one now, and I feel strongly about being mischaracterized. At any rate thanks again for your concern and best of luck to you.


It was good to hear from you again. I will try to have a response to your comment posted as soon as possible (hopefully within the next day or two).


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