On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is true?

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bskeptic
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On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is true?

Post by bskeptic » Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:37 am

On what criteria do we assess whether conservative Christianity is true?

How do we find out if conservative Christianity, or some version of it, is a true religion?

bskeptic
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Re: On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is tr

Post by bskeptic » Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:40 am

One example of a possible criteria:


How do You Choose a Religion?

by J.P. Moreland

http://www.jpmoreland.com/articles/religionchoice/


Principle 3: A religion's diagnosis of and solution for the human condition should be more profound than its rivals.

A student of mine came from India to study at Talbot School of Theology. Having been raised a Hindu, he began an intense search for religious truth as a teenager. His search led him to study the religious texts of the world's leading religions. His search also led him to Jesus Christ. Why? He said that, by comparison, the teachings of Jesus and the New Testament towered over the others for their depth, profundity and power. While all religions have some truths in them, one should choose a religion that does the best job of diagnosing what is wrong with human beings and how their condition can be solved.

When one does a cross-cultural study of the human condition, one finds the following universal human experiences and desires: All humans (1) experience threefold alienation — they feel alienated from God, from other people (including those they love), and from themselves; (2) experience deep and abiding shame and guilt; (3) desire personal life after death in which their loves and ideals may continue to be a part of their experience; (4) desire that their individual lives have meaning and purpose; (5) desire a life of beauty and drama, to be a part of something big and important, to be part of the struggle between good and evil; and (6) experience the need for help and empowerment to live a life of virtue and character.

I believe that if one carefully compares the New Testament with other religious approaches (including atheism), like my student, one will discover that the religion of Jesus of Nazareth provides the deepest, most penetrating analysis of these six factors, along with the richest solution to these longings of the human heart.

Principle 3 points straight to Christianity.

bskeptic
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Re: On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is tr

Post by bskeptic » Sun Oct 06, 2013 2:51 am

Note that this thread isn't for arguments over whether Christianity is really true or not. It's about how, in principle, you could go about finding an answer to that question.

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Peter Kirby
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Re: On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is tr

Post by Peter Kirby » Sun Oct 06, 2013 11:40 pm

bskeptic wrote:One example of a possible criteria:
The criterion mentioned (profundity, diagnosis of human condition) is not really able to do anything more than confirm the cultural bias of the person applying it.
"... almost every critical biblical position was earlier advanced by skeptics." - Raymond Brown

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Cheerful Charlie
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Re: On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is tr

Post by Cheerful Charlie » Tue Oct 15, 2013 8:03 am

bskeptic wrote:On what criteria do we assess whether conservative Christianity is true?

How do we find out if conservative Christianity, or some version of it, is a true religion?
Christianity can be judged on numerous criteria.

1. Is it based on known witnesses who have knowledge and good judgment?
Well no. All supposed witnesses, the gospels, are anonymous and aren't very trustworthy.
2. Are the claims made about it good?
No, contradictions abound.
3. Is Christianity's theological claims reasonable?
No, predestination, reprobation, lack of free will, foreknowledge et al are monstrous ideas.
4. Failed prophecies. The second coming of Jesus was to occur 1900 years ago, but failed.
5. False promises. Failed miracle working promises, Mark 11, John 14, James 5, Mark 16, Luke 10.
6. Historically accurate? Not likely, no mention of "saints" arising from their graves et al by witnesses of that time.
7. No God, no Christianity. Christianity makes claims about the nature of God and God's attributes that can be used
to disprove God's existence. See my threads on strong atheism for example.

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Cheerful Charlie - Strong atheist and jolly well proud of it.

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Eric
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Re: On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is tr

Post by Eric » Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:10 am

Cheerful Charlie wrote:
bskeptic wrote:On what criteria do we assess whether conservative Christianity is true?

How do we find out if conservative Christianity, or some version of it, is a true religion?
Christianity can be judged on numerous criteria.

1. Is it based on known witnesses who have knowledge and good judgment?
Well no. All supposed witnesses, the gospels, are anonymous and aren't very trustworthy.
2. Are the claims made about it good?
No, contradictions abound.
3. Is Christianity's theological claims reasonable?
No, predestination, reprobation, lack of free will, foreknowledge et al are monstrous ideas.
4. Failed prophecies. The second coming of Jesus was to occur 1900 years ago, but failed.
5. False promises. Failed miracle working promises, Mark 11, John 14, James 5, Mark 16, Luke 10.
6. Historically accurate? Not likely, no mention of "saints" arising from their graves et al by witnesses of that time.
7. No God, no Christianity. Christianity makes claims about the nature of God and God's attributes that can be used to disprove God's existence. See my threads on strong atheism for example.

Cheerful Charlie
Charlie, I will reply on each, however, you threw me off with your #5 with failed miracle working promises and citing complete chapters? Also do not know what (et al) stands for in questions 3 & 6)
To become fully human is divine.

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Cheerful Charlie
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Re: On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is tr

Post by Cheerful Charlie » Sat Oct 19, 2013 12:52 pm

Mark 11
32 For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.
John 14
11 Believe me that I am in the Father, and the Father in me: or else believe me for the very works' sake.
12 Verily, verily, I say unto you, He that believeth on me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go unto my Father.
13 And whatsoever ye shall ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son.
Mark 16
17 And these signs shall follow them that believe; In my name shall they cast out devils; they shall speak with new tongues;
18 They shall take up serpents; and if they drink any deadly thing, it shall not hurt them; they shall lay hands on the sick, and they shall recover.
Luke 10
19 Behold, I give unto you power to tread on serpents and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy: and nothing shall by any means hurt you.
James 5
13 Is any among you afflicted? let him pray. Is any merry? let him sing psalms.
14 Is any sick among you? let him call for the elders of the church; and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord:
15 And the prayer of faith shall save the sick, and the Lord shall raise him up; and if he have committed sins, they shall be forgiven him.

Matthew 27
51 And, behold, the veil of the temple was rent in twain from the top to the bottom; and the earth did quake, and the rocks rent;
52 And the graves were opened; and many bodies of the saints which slept arose,
53 And came out of the graves after his resurrection, and went into the holy city, and appeared unto many.
54 Now when the centurion, and they that were with him, watching Jesus, saw the earthquake, and those things that were done, they feared greatly, saying, Truly this was the Son of God.
What, nobody noticed ? Wrote of this amazing happening?

The problems of predestination, free will, God's grace, the elect and reprobate have been theological headaches for centuries and still is among theologians. Read Romans 8, 9 and 11 to start. And you might look for and downlo od and read Martin Luther's book, "Bondage of the Will" where Luther goes into all of this in considerable detail.
'Free will is impossible". -- Martin Luther.

Be advised, most people here know the Bible well. You may have to occasionally google for exact details if you are not so familiar with say, Mark 11:23.

Cheerful Charlie
Cheerful Charlie - Strong atheist and jolly well proud of it.

Roger Pearse
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Re: On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is tr

Post by Roger Pearse » Fri Oct 25, 2013 10:07 am

Whatever criteria we use, we must apply them equally to the alternative; which, in reality, is to adopt the period values of the time and place in which we happen to have been born.

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Peter Kirby
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Re: On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is tr

Post by Peter Kirby » Fri Oct 25, 2013 1:16 pm

A Southern Baptist doesn't have to make that choice. Isn't that grand?
"... almost every critical biblical position was earlier advanced by skeptics." - Raymond Brown

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Re: On what criteria do we assess whether Christianity is tr

Post by Joseph_Abbott » Tue Oct 29, 2013 9:08 am

If you receive the Holy Spirit, and let Him work thru you, convict you of your sins and produce good works, then isn't that enough "proof"? As for exactly which denomination is the "true" one, well that is determined by your own personality and God's plan for you. "Truth" is a human construction, resulting from the inability of our brains to grasp the wholeness of creation. Paradoxes are where the real truth lies.


11 And he said to them, “To you has been given the secret of the kingdom of God, but for those outside everything is in parables, 12 so that

“they may indeed see but not perceive,
and may indeed hear but not understand,
lest they should turn and be forgiven.”

Mark 4:11-12

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