Friday, January 30, 2009

The Best Explanation to What Happened on the Hudson....


25 comments:

Amy said...

God does whatever He pleases. His power is so high, so mighty that whatever He has willed, He brings to pass. His will is never frustrated. Not even by the wicked who think that they can defy God and destroy His people. God so governs, that all things take place according to His good-pleasure. "The Lord reigneth, he is clothed with strength wherewith he hath girded himself: the world also is stablished that it cannot be moved."
Psalm 115:2-3

A voice crying out........

Reynold said...

Hmh. And I thought the pilot and his training had something to do with it...how well do you think it'd have gone down if there was no pilot?

It seems that only when there is human factors at work that you people feel that you can get away with supernatural "explanations".


Then there are all sorts of accidents and disasters in which many people die. Those are ignored or disregarded as "god's will" or some such thing, but when something like this happens, you people rush in and use it as a "proof" that your "god" exists.

For that matter then, if this is how you think, how do you explain the fact that people got killed in the Twin Towers on 9/11? If those towers had collapsed and no one got killed or injured, that would have been a true proof of the existence of your god, as opposed to that of the muslims.

Beleth said...

One wonders why God saw fit to cause the crisis in the first place.

Javier said...

One wonders why God saw fit to cause the crisis in the first place.

I don't wonder, Christians shouldn't wonder...are you a Christian?

Amy said...

From the topic: The Sovereignty of God
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Sustained by Sovereign Grace—
By John Piper June 16, 1996


Jeremiah 32:36-41

Now therefore thus says the Lord God of Israel concerning this city of which you say, "It is given into the hand of the king of Babylon by sword, by famine, and by pestilence," 37 "Behold, I will gather them out of all the lands to which I have driven them in My anger, in My wrath, and in great indignation; and I will bring them back to this place and make them dwell in safety. 38 And they shall be My people, and I will be their God; 39 and I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me always, for their own good, and for the good of their children after them. 40 And I will make an everlasting covenant with them that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; and I will put the fear of Me in their hearts so that they will not turn away from Me. 41 And I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will faithfully plant them in this land with all My heart and with all My soul." 42 For thus says the Lord, "Just as I brought all this great disaster on this people, so I am going to bring on them all the good that I am promising them."

What Is Sustaining Grace?

We are celebrating 125 years of God's sustaining grace. What is that? What is sustaining grace? Let me put it in a four-line rhyme:

Not grace to bar what is not bliss,
Nor flight from all distress, but this:
The grace that orders our trouble and pain,
And then, in the darkness, is there to sustain.

I stress this because to celebrate a grace that bars what is not bliss, and gives flight from all distress and does not order our pain would be biblically false and experientially unrealistic.

. . . In a Near-Fatal Crash

Our experience and the Bible teach us that grace does not prevent pain, but orders and arranges and measures out our pain, and then in the darkness is there to sustain. For example, yesterday Bob Ricker, the president of the Baptist General Conference, spoke of precious reminders of God's sustaining grace. Not quite ten years ago Bob and Dee's daughter was in a serious automobile accident. She is alive today for one reason. In the car behind her was a doctor who happened to have an air tube in his pocket. By the time he got to her she was already turning blue. He forced the tube into her throat and saved her life. At her wedding a few years later, Bob told her: those facial scars you have to live with—they are memorials of sustaining grace.

Now Bob Ricker is not naïve. He knows that if God can ordain that in the car behind there be a doctor, and that this doctor have a breathing apparatus in his pocket, and that he have the presence of mind to use it savingly, then this God is fully able to prevent the accident in the first place. In fact, earlier Bob had quoted Ephesians 1:11, "We have been predestined according to his purpose who works all things according to the counsel of his will." And he stressed: "All things, means all things"—including, I assume, the paths of cars and airplanes and arrows and bullets. That was the inspiration for my little poem, "What Is Sustaining Grace?"

Not grace to bar what is not bliss,
Nor flight from all distress, but this:
The grace that orders our trouble and pain,
And then, in the darkness, is there to sustain.

. . . When the Car Breaks Down

Saturday, two weeks ago, Noël and Abraham and Barnabas and Talitha were traveling to Georgia in the car and it broke down in a lonely stretch about an hour south of Indianapolis. The radiator was shot. A farmer in his mid-sixties pulls over and offers help. Noël says that she supposes they need a motel and hopes that Monday morning there may be a garage open to work on the car. The farmer says, "Would you like to stay with me and my wife?" Noël hesitates and does not want to put them out. He says, "The Lord said when we serve others, it's like serving him." She says, "Well, could we go to church with you in the morning?" He says, "If you can take a Baptist church."

So they stay with the farmer, who is also an aviation mechanic, and who diagnoses the problem, drives to town Monday morning, buys a new radiator, comes back, puts it in at no expense, and sends the family on their way. In the meantime Barnabas has pulled his fishing rod out of the car and caught a nineteen-inch catfish—for icing on the cake.

The God who can cause a farmer to stop to help Noël and who sees to it that he is a Christian (even a Baptist!), and that he and his wife have room for the family to stay, and that he is a mechanic, and that he finds a radiator first thing Monday morning, and that he is willing to take the time, and that he has a pond with catfish—this God is perfectly able to keep a radiator from bursting open in the middle of Indiana.

. . . When Healing Doesn't Happen

But in this fallen world of futility that is not all that sustaining grace does.

Not grace to bar what is not bliss,
Nor flight from all distress, but this:
The grace that orders our trouble and pain,
And then, in the darkness, is there to sustain.

One of the young men in our church is going through some deep waters right now which are testing his faith almost to the limit. He said to me recently: it would be easier if Jesus hadn't healed but instead had given grace to endure the absence of healing. One of the things I said to him was this: That's exactly what Jesus did do—and for that very reason—in 2 Corinthians 12:9–10. God's grace ordains that Paul have a thorn in the flesh for the sake of his humility and then will not remove it in answer to prayer. But he says,

My [sustaining] grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness.

To which Paul responds,

Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 10 Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ's sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong.

Not grace to bar what is not bliss,
Nor flight from all distress, but this:
The grace that orders our trouble and pain,
And then, in the darkness, is there to sustain.

. . . When the Church Burns Down

On Monday, March 16, 1885, when Bethlehem Baptist Church was 14 years old and located on the corner of 12th Avenue and 6th Street (where the Douglas Company is now) the church caught fire. It was ruined beyond repair. But in that darkness there was a marveling at God's grace. The part of the roof where the firemen stood was the only part that did not collapse. And within seven weeks the church had bought the building of the Second Congregational Church where we worshiped for 106 years until this building was completed in 1991.

Now the God who can spare firemen by holding up part of a weakened roof, and who can arrange for a new and better building in seven weeks, could have prevented the fire in the first place.

I hope the point is clear: We are celebrating sustaining grace.

The grace that orders our trouble and pain,
And then, in the darkness, is there to sustain.

God Does Not Always Spare Calamity

Our text in Jeremiah 32 is about this kind of sustaining grace, and holds the key to why Bethlehem Baptist Church is alive in the city today after 125 years of trials. Jerusalem and God's chosen people are in darkness and distress. And it is God himself who has ordered it so. Look at verse 36: "Now therefore thus says the LORD God of Israel concerning this city of which you say, 'It is given into the hand of the king of Babylon by sword, by famine, and by pestilence.'" That's what they say about it. And it is true. Grace has not spared them this calamity. Nor will the grace of God spare you your appointed calamity.

But what they say about God's chosen ones is not the last word. God has the last word. And it is a word of grace. Verse 37: "Behold, I will gather them out of all the lands to which I have driven them in My anger, in My wrath, and in great indignation; and I will bring them back to this place and make them dwell in safety." So God declares that he has ordered the trouble and pain. "I have driven them" to these foreign lands. And he declares that he himself with deliver them and bring them back to himself and to their land. In other words, sovereign grace will eventually triumph over the calamity.
How Can We Be Sure of the Triumph of Grace?

How can we be sure of this triumph of grace? If God is a God of justice who can send Israel into devastating exile where many are lost because of their sin and disobedience, then how can we have confidence that this will not happen to God's chosen people today—the church, the bride of Christ, the true Israel, you and me, who have been called into the fellowship of his Son? It is one question to ask: why has Bethlehem endured for 125 years? But an even more urgent question is: how can we be sure that grace will triumph for Bethlehem and in our own lives in the future? How can you be sure that grace will sustain you to the end in the faith and holiness that brings you safe to heaven?

That's what the rest of this text is about. The answer is: sustaining grace for God's chosen people is sovereign grace. That is, sustaining grace is omnipotent grace. It is grace that overcomes all obstacles and preserves the faith and holiness that brings us home to heaven. This is our only sure confidence for the future. You and I, in ourselves, are utterly fickle and unreliable. If we were left to our own powers to persevere, we would make shipwreck of our faith, it is sure. This is why the saints have prayed for centuries,

O to grace how great a debtor
Daily I'm constrained to be!
Let thy goodness like a fetter
Bind my wandering heart to thee:
Prone to wander, Lord I feel it,
Prone to leave the God I love;
Here's my heart, O, take and seal it;
Seal it for thy courts above.

Is that the way saints should pray? Is that the way to pray for your future and for Bethlehem's future? Is that a biblical way to pray? Make your goodness like a fetter—a chain—that binds my wandering heart to you. Seal my heart with an unbreakable bond for the courts of heaven. In other words: Keep me! Preserve me! Defeat every rising rebellion! Overcome every niggling doubt! Deliver from every destructive temptation! Nullify every fatal allurement! Expose every demonic deception! Tear down every arrogant argument! Shape me! Incline me! Hold me! Master me! Do whatever you must do to keep me trusting you and fearing you till Jesus comes or calls. May we—should we—pray and sing like that?

The answer from this text is yes. That kind of singing and praying is rooted in the new covenant promise of sovereign, sustaining grace. Let's read it. Keep in mind: this is one of several Old Testament promises of the new covenant that Jesus said he sealed with his own blood for all who are in him. It is not just for Jews, but for those who are true Jews by virtue of union with Jesus, the seed of Abraham (Galatians 3:7, 16). Jeremiah 32:38–41 says,

And they shall be My people, and I will be their God; 39 and I will give them one heart and one way, that they may fear Me always, for their own good, and for the good of their children after them. 40 And I will make an everlasting covenant with them that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; and I will put the fear of Me in their hearts so that they will not turn away from Me. 41 And I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will faithfully plant them in this land with all My heart and with all My soul.

Four Promises of Sovereign, Sustaining Grace

Notice four promises of sovereign, sustaining grace.

1. God Will Be Our God

God promises to be our God. Verse 38: "They will be my people and I will be their God." All the promises to his people are summed up in this: "I will be your God." That is, I will use all that I am as God—all my wisdom, all my power, and all my love—to see to it that you remain my people. All that I am as God, I exert for your good.

2. God Promises to Change Our Hearts

God promises to change our hearts and cause us to love and fear him. Verse 39: "I will give them one heart and one way that they may fear me always . . . (v. 40b) I will put the fear of me in their hearts." In other words, God will not simply stand by to see if we, by our own powers, will fear him; he will sovereignly, supremely, mercifully give us the heart that we need to have, and give us the faith and the fear of God that will lead us home to heaven. This is sovereign, sustaining grace. (See Deuteronomy 30:6; Ezekiel 11:19–20; 36:27.)

3. God Promises We Will Not Turn Away from Him

God promises that he will not turn away from us and we will not turn away from him. Verse 40: "I will make an everlasting covenant with them that I will not turn away from them, to do them good; and I will put the fear of Me in their hearts so that they will not turn away from Me." In other words, his heart work is so powerful that he guarantees we will not turn from him. This is what's new about the new covenant: God promises to fulfill by his power the conditions that we have to meet. We must fear him and love him and trust him. And he says, I will see to that. I will "put the fear of me in their hearts"—not to see what they will do with it, but in such a way that "they will not turn from me." This is sovereign, sustaining grace.

4. God Promises to Do This with Infinite Intensity

Finally, God promises to do this with the greatest intensity imaginable. He expresses this in two ways, one at the beginning and one at the end of verse 41: "And I will rejoice over them to do them good, and I will faithfully plant them in this land with all My heart and with all My soul." First he says that he will exert this sovereign, sustaining grace with joy: "I will rejoice over them to do them good." Then he says (at the end of verse 41) that he will exert this sovereign, sustaining grace "with all [his] heart and with all [his] soul."
How Great Is God's Desire to Do You Good?

He rejoices to sustain you and he rejoices with all his heart and with all his soul. Now I ask you, not with any sermonic exaggeration or rhetorical flourish or with any sense of overstatement at all—I ask you, I challenge you, can you conceive of an intensity of desire that is greater than a desire empowered by "all God's heart and all God's soul"? Suppose you took all the desire for food and sex and money and fame and power and meaning and friends and security in the hearts and souls of all the human beings on the earth—say about six billion—and you put all that desire, multiplied by all those six billion hearts and souls, into a container. How would it compare to the desire of God to do you good implied in the words, "with all his heart and with all his soul"? It would compare like a thimble to the Pacific Ocean. Because the heart and soul of God are infinite. And the hearts and souls of man are finite. There is no intensity greater than the intensity of "all God's heart, and all God's soul."

And that is the intensity of the joy he has in sustaining you with sovereign grace: "I will rejoice over them to do them good . . . with all my heart and all my soul." Some of you may be tasting the sweetness of this grace for the first time this morning. That is the work of the Holy Spirit in your life, and I urge you to yield to it and be mastered by sovereign, sustaining grace.

Others of you have lived in this sweet assurance for decades and simply join me this morning in exulting over this glorious reality in our lives. I invite you all to sing with me, to bless the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit for the sovereign, sustaining grace that has kept us as a church for 125 years and will keep God's elect in the faith till Jesus comes or Jesus calls.

Not grace to bar what is not bliss,
Nor flight from all distress, but this:
The grace that orders our trouble and pain,
And then, in the darkness, is there to sustain.

Let's bless the Lord together with hymn #9, "Sing Praise to the Father"—and when we get to verse 3, revel with me in this truth that the Spirit quickens, and woos, and subdues, and seals, and presents us faultless to God.

a voice crying out............

Reynold said...

To make a long story short, Amy just repeated what I said earlier.

Melissa Spence said...

What a cool illustration! It was neat to see the crew of that flight recognized at the Superbowl today. Too bad NBC did not air that prolife ad during the Superbowl.

Javier said...

Hmh. And I thought the pilot and his training had something to do with it...how well do you think it'd have gone down if there was no pilot?

Well, if no pilot had been flying the plane there would have been no flight. You people should think clearly.

It seems that only when there is human factors at work that you people feel that you can get away with supernatural "explanations".

It seems that you people don't want to understand a Christian theology of providence. God uses means for His purposes.

Then there are all sorts of accidents and disasters in which many people die. Those are ignored or disregarded as "god's will" or some such thing, but when something like this happens, you people rush in and use it as a "proof" that your "god" exists.

I didn't know this was offered as evidence that God exists, as far as I'm concerned a picture of birds being thrown into the engine, and a hand pushing the plane down could have been made as well. You people should inform yourself more regarding our theology.

Furthermore, they are not ignored or disregarded as God's will. That is a valid explanation, why is it insufficient? Similarly the crashing of the plane into the Hudson was God's will. As it was God's will that flight 188 landed safley in Jersey.

For that matter then, if this is how you think, how do you explain the fact that people got killed in the Twin Towers on 9/11?

If those towers had collapsed and no one got killed or injured, that would have been a true proof of the existence of your god, as opposed to that of the muslims.

No it wouldn't. You people can't think consistently. If you reject this argument for the Hudson River plane crash how would you have accepted it for the 9/11 disaster? If Trish had shown a picture of God's hands on the Twin Towers you would have simply whined about some other disaster. Its the same argument, you're just moving it over. Somehow now God has to save people from crumbling towers instead of a falling plane. If God had preserved the lives of the people who died in 9/11 you would have said "Well what about x disaster in y city." The simple answer is that you people don't want to believe, but you do and you hate it. You're demonstrating your total depravity.

Reynold said...

Javier said, quoting me:

Hmh. And I thought the pilot and his training had something to do with it...how well do you think it'd have gone down if there was no pilot?

Well, if no pilot had been flying the plane there would have been no flight. You people should think clearly.
I thought you'd be smart enough to realize that I meant if the guy had a heart attack or was otherwise incapacitated after the flight took off; I was wrong, I apologize.

It seems that only when there is human factors at work that you people feel that you can get away with supernatural "explanations".
It seems that you people don't want to understand a Christian theology of providence. God uses means for His purposes.
In other words, I was right when I said that if something good happens, your god gets the credit; if something bad happens, well, "who are we to judge his will", eh?

Using that mindframe it'd be impossible to disprove the existence of any deity. That's the problem unless you already accept the existence of said deity in the first place.


Then there are all sorts of accidents and disasters in which many people die. Those are ignored or disregarded as "god's will" or some such thing, but when something like this happens, you people rush in and use it as a "proof" that your "god" exists.
I didn't know this was offered as evidence that God exists,
Hello....look at this post! That's what she's doing...giving the credit for the safe landing to some other being other than the pilot who actually landed the plane

as far as I'm concerned a picture of birds being thrown into the engine, and a hand pushing the plane down could have been made as well. You people should inform yourself more regarding our theology.
You people should realize how dodgy your theology looks like to those who aren't indoctrinated in it.

Furthermore, they are not ignored or disregarded as God's will. That is a valid explanation, why is it insufficient?
It's impossible to test, see what I said above.

Similarly the crashing of the plane into the Hudson was God's will. As it was God's will that flight 188 landed safley in Jersey.
Was it also "God's will" when any plane crashes with fatalities? How can you tell whether it's "God's will" or the pilot's skill or lack of it is to take credit or the blame?

At least when something goes wrong, we don't go running around blaming "god" but rather we investigate and find out if it was pilot error, climate, or mechanical problems.


For that matter then, if this is how you think, how do you explain the fact that people got killed in the Twin Towers on 9/11?

If those towers had collapsed and no one got killed or injured, that would have been a true proof of the existence of your god, as opposed to that of the muslims.

No it wouldn't. You people can't think consistently. If you reject this argument for the Hudson River plane crash how would you have accepted it for the 9/11 disaster?
Easy. With two huge towers crashing down on the people inside, the chances of survival are a lot less than if a pilot is able to land a plane on a river in one piece. In fact, the landing itself is a lot more likely than people surviving the towers crashing...after all, the guy is trained to handle stuff like this.

If Trish had shown a picture of God's hands on the Twin Towers you would have simply whined about some other disaster.
You are the ones not thinking consistently. We're pointing out that no "god" is responsible for anything. If there was a "god" responsible, then why is he so inconsistent with who he saves and where?

Its the same argument, you're just moving it over. Somehow now God has to save people from crumbling towers instead of a falling plane.
If he wanted people to see a perfect piece of evidence that the Christian god as opposed to the Muslim god exists, it would have been a good thing to do...

If God had preserved the lives of the people who died in 9/11 you would have said "Well what about x disaster in y city."
No. Why? For everyone to survive the huge towers falling like that would have gone against all the laws of nature. It's be impossible for everyone to survive something like that.


The simple answer is that you people don't want to believe, but you do and you hate it. You're demonstrating your total depravity.
The simple answer really is that you theists keep dodging when people point out problems with what you believe, and instead of thinking about it, your resort to name-calling.

Fish with Trish said...

"Then there are all sorts of accidents and disasters in which many people die."

And God is Sovereign in all of these things, too.

"For that matter then, if this is how you think, how do you explain the fact that people got killed in the Twin Towers on 9/11?"

God is Sovereign in all of these things, too.

"One wonders why God saw fit to cause the crisis in the first place."

There is a saying, "Behind every frowning providence is the sovereign smile of God." Who are we to question what is truly good and what is evil?? God is Sovereign (in control) in all of these things, too.

"If those towers had collapsed and no one got killed or injured, that would have been a true proof of the existence of your god, as opposed to that of the muslims."

Not true at all. You are looking at this with temporal eyes. God is doing many things at one time to accomplish His purposes. But you first must be born again to understand these things. Nothing that I am saying will make sense unless God transfers you from the Kingdom of darkness TO the kingdom of light. And there is still time. Cry out to God. Recognize that you have broken His commandments and that his wrath abides upon you. Repent and turn from you wicked ways and trust Christ like you would trust a parachute to save you from a burning building...and He will give you eternal life that does not fade away.

Javier said...

I thought you'd be smart enough to realize that I meant if the guy had a heart attack or was otherwise incapacitated after the flight took off; I was wrong, I apologize.

No. Its not about having to guess what you were implying, if you people want to be taken seriously then you should be clear and not be ambigous. If you're willing to defend your belief system, or attack mine then this is basic for you to know.

In other words, I was right when I said that if something good happens, your god gets the credit; if something bad happens, well, "who are we to judge his will", eh?

Is this an argument? You simply regurtitated, albeit in a naive manner, what a Christian would say regarding the nature of God's acts in providence. Yes.

Using that mindframe it'd be impossible to disprove the existence of any deity. That's the problem unless you already accept the existence of said deity in the first place.

Yes, its an assumption. All worldviews have assumptions necessary for the worldview to function, can you tell me how in your dogmatic empiricism you can empirically validate your empirical system? What sense did you sense to tell you that you're sensing the right sense?

Hello....look at this post! That's what she's doing...giving the credit for the safe landing to some other being other than the pilot who actually landed the plane

You obviously known nothing about Trish's theology.

You people should realize how dodgy your theology looks like to those who aren't indoctrinated in it.

Firstly, you don't know my theology. Since if you did, you'd know that the picture even if used by Trish to argue for a miracle need not be interpreted so, but can be seen as God's providential kindness in creation. Furthermore, Trish has a consistent view of providence.

It's impossible to test, see what I said above.

So what? There are things that are impossible to test. How do you test, the test that you use to test other things? Can you test it if its true? Or do you assume its truthfulness? Since when can you assume the truthfulness of a test, before testing it? This seems arbitrary. Yet you're assuming its valid to be able to 'test' miracles without questioning the validity of 'testing'.


Was it also "God's will" when any plane crashes with fatalities? How can you tell whether it's "God's will" or the pilot's skill or lack of it is to take credit or the blame?


Um, all things that happen are God's will. I'm amused that you'd call us 'indoctrinated' without knowing our doctrine.

At least when something goes wrong, we don't go running around blaming "god" but rather we investigate and find out if it was pilot error, climate, or mechanical problems.

At least, Christians are responsible in their use of language to understand that 'blaming' God is logical impossibility. You can stop creating straw men now if you'd like.


For that matter then, if this is how you think, how do you explain the fact that people got killed in the Twin Towers on 9/11?

God's judgment perhaps, definitely God's will.

Easy. With two huge towers crashing down on the people inside, the chances of survival are a lot less than if a pilot is able to land a plane on a river in one piece. In fact, the landing itself is a lot more likely than people surviving the towers crashing...after all, the guy is trained to handle stuff like this.

Again. I'm surprised that your understanding of our Christian theology is so poor. Seems like you picked up the latest Benny Hinn book, or prosperity movement. Why are you assuming that my God wanted to save anyone in the collapse of those towers at all? This assumption demonstrates the futility of your thinking.


You are the ones not thinking consistently. We're pointing out that no "god" is responsible for anything.


You're right responsiblity implies a standard to be held accountable to. God cannot be held responsible to a standard that doesn't apply to himself.

If there was a "god" responsible, then why is he so inconsistent with who he saves and where?

Because he doesn't want to save everyone. Duh.

No. Why? For everyone to survive the huge towers falling like that would have gone against all the laws of nature. It's be impossible for everyone to survive something like that.

Again, why are you assuming God wants to save everyone?

The simple answer really is that you theists keep dodging when people point out problems with what you believe, and instead of thinking about it, your resort to name-calling.

Nah. Just do me a favor. Keep your day job.

Reynold said...

Except that one can trust a parachute to not have divine "Sovereignty" and choose to not open. Your analogy fails there. Is something good happens, your "god" gets the credit. If something bad happens, well, it's his will. Just as you've demonstrated.

That's why it's impossible to test to see if he actually exists or not...all the excuses you people make up to explain away any failures.

Reynold said...

Javier said, quoting me:

I thought you'd be smart enough to realize that I meant if the guy had a heart attack or was otherwise incapacitated after the flight took off; I was wrong, I apologize.

No. Its not about having to guess what you were implying, if you people want to be taken seriously then you should be clear and not be ambigous. If you're willing to defend your belief system, or attack mine then this is basic for you to know.
I've already apologized for over-estimating your intelligence, what's your problem?

In other words, I was right when I said that if something good happens, your god gets the credit; if something bad happens, well, "who are we to judge his will", eh?
Is this an argument?
No, just pointing out how you people dodge when it comes time to try to confirm the existence of your god.

You simply regurtitated, albeit in a naive manner, what a Christian would say regarding the nature of God's acts in providence. Yes.
Yes, I'm just pointing out how useless it is to try to prove the existence of your god through actions in the physical world, since you people have an excuse for anything.

Using that mindframe it'd be impossible to disprove the existence of any deity. That's the problem unless you already accept the existence of said deity in the first place.
Yes, its an assumption. All worldviews have assumptions necessary for the worldview to function, can you tell me how in your dogmatic empiricism you can empirically validate your empirical system?
Ever hear of the scientific method? Ever see the cross-examination that goes on in a courtroom? Ever hear of corroborative evidence? Ever hear of experiments and testing? Are you seriously complaining because I do not take unverifiable supernatural things into account for what happens in the world? As I said, given your mindset, it'd be impossible to disprove the existence of any god.

What sense did you sense to tell you that you're sensing the right sense?
What drugs are you on? All one needs is to think a little, something that you seem to discourage, as seen by your remark to Beleth.

Hello....look at this post! That's what she's doing...giving the credit for the safe landing to some other being other than the pilot who actually landed the plane
You obviously known nothing about Trish's theology.
No, her theology is pretty obvious. She made her point right in her post, and in her last reply to me she verified what I had said.

You people should realize how dodgy your theology looks like to those who aren't indoctrinated in it.
Firstly, you don't know my theology. Since if you did, you'd know that the picture even if used by Trish to argue for a miracle need not be interpreted so, but can be seen as God's providential kindness in creation.
Her picture in context with the title, is pretty obvious. If I misinterpreted it then, perhaps she could explain it herself then, instead of leaving it so, what's that word you once used? Oh yes, ambiguous.


Furthermore, Trish has a consistent view of providence.
Yes, consistently untestable, and consistently unverifiable.


It's impossible to test, see what I said above.
So what? There are things that are impossible to test.
Then why blindly and dogmatically assume your god's existence then, since it's impossible to test? Doesn't the bible itself encourage testing? To test all things, hold on to that which is good?

How do you test, the test that you use to test other things? Can you test it if its true? Or do you assume its truthfulness? Since when can you assume the truthfulness of a test, before testing it? This seems arbitrary.
You seem stupid. Ever hear of corroborative testing? Ever hear of double-blind tests? Ever hear of statistical analyses? Ever hear of the scientific method again?

Try learning about something before showing your complete ignorance.

Yet you're assuming i'ts valid to be able to 'test' miracles without questioning the validity of 'testing'.
Your own bible claims that prayer can work...so what's wrong with checking to see if it does?

Besides, you're assuming the validity of miracles without any evidence whatsoever.



Was it also "God's will" when any plane crashes with fatalities? How can you tell whether it's "God's will" or the pilot's skill or lack of it is to take credit or the blame?
Um, all things that happen are God's will. I'm amused that you'd call us 'indoctrinated' without knowing our doctrine.
I'm just confirming what it is you people believe. Since you say that all things that happen are "god's will" then how can one test to see if it's your god that exists or not?

At least when something goes wrong, we don't go running around blaming "god" but rather we investigate and find out if it was pilot error, climate, or mechanical problems.
At least, Christians are responsible in their use of language to understand that 'blaming' God is logical impossibility. You can stop creating straw men now if you'd like.
How is it a logical impossibility please? Did you not just say that everything that happens is "gods' will"? Good or bad, "God" wanted it to happen. Think about what that means for a minute, please.


For that matter then, if this is how you think, how do you explain the fact that people got killed in the Twin Towers on 9/11?
God's judgment perhaps, definitely God's will.
Yeah, those people in those towers really had it coming eh? With that line, you sound like the Muslims who ran the planes into the towers: it's "god's will".

Easy. With two huge towers crashing down on the people inside, the chances of survival are a lot less than if a pilot is able to land a plane on a river in one piece. In fact, the landing itself is a lot more likely than people surviving the towers crashing...after all, the guy is trained to handle stuff like this.
Again. I'm surprised that your understanding of our Christian theology is so poor. Seems like you picked up the latest Benny Hinn book, or prosperity movement.
I've never read that junk.

Why are you assuming that my God wanted to save anyone in the collapse of those towers at all? This assumption demonstrates the futility of your thinking.
What a coincidence it is then, that all those people whom your god wanted to die anyway where all at the right place and time to die. You'd think that if your god wanted to show himself, an act of mercy at that point would have been more useful.

Again, you show the futility of xian apologetics; your reasoning makes it impossible to test or show whether your god exists or not. You have nothing but blind dogmatic assumptions and dogmatic excuses.


You are the ones not thinking consistently. We're pointing out that no "god" is responsible for anything.
You're right responsiblity implies a standard to be held accountable to. God cannot be held responsible to a standard that doesn't apply to himself.
If it doesn't apply to himself then what right do you have to say that he's "righteous"? What you describe is an amoral being, not a righteous, moral being.

If there was a "god" responsible, then why is he so inconsistent with who he saves and where?
Because he doesn't want to save everyone. Duh.
Again, it's odd that all those people in that tower at that time were people he wanted to die. How convenient. Again, nice and impossible to prove the existence of your god. We just have to make do with your excuses.

No. Why? For everyone to survive the huge towers falling like that would have gone against all the laws of nature. It's be impossible for everyone to survive something like that.
Again, why are you assuming God wants to save everyone?
Because a show of supernatural "grace" would have provided excellent proof of his existence and would have brought him more souls and more "glory" than just letting them die?

Oh that's right, your god gets' glory through the deaths and sufferings of people, right?

The simple answer really is that you theists keep dodging when people point out problems with what you believe, and instead of thinking about it, your resort to name-calling.
Nah. Just do me a favor. Keep your day job.
You should maybe try getting one. I can't see your apologetics convincing anyone who isn't already a believer.

Reynold said...

One last thing...when you calvinists say that "God" isn't to be held to the same standard of behaviour that we are, what then of Christ when he was on earth? Wasn't he supposed to obey the laws so that he'd be the perfect, "sinless" sacrifice for our "sins"?

Nathe said...

Hey Reynold,
Luke 13 -A Call to Repentance

1 About this time Jesus was informed that Pilate had murdered some people from Galilee as they were offering sacrifices at the Temple. 2 “Do you think those Galileans were worse sinners than all the other people from Galilee?” Jesus asked. “Is that why they suffered? 3 Not at all! And you will perish, too, unless you repent of your sins and turn to God. 4 And what about the eighteen people who died when the tower in Siloam fell on them? Were they the worst sinners in Jerusalem? 5 No, and I tell you again that unless you repent, you will perish, too.”

Reynold said...

According to your theology, nathe, we all deserve to die. So what?

Ed Soto said...

Peter 3:9 (New King James Version) The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is long suffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.

Life is fragile and what happened in NYC with the US Airways jet filled with 155 passengers is example of how close death can be. Especially when you consider how many minutes the pilot had to land that thing in the Hudson River. From the time it took off to the time it landed was approximately 3 minutes. I'm sure an eternity to the passengers. They can only ultimately thank God for sparing their lives through the expertise of the pilot and staff. I believe God has given some of them another chance to get right with Him. Blessings to you Trish and your ministry of reconciliation - Eddie letsgofishin2009.blogspot.com

Javier said...

I've already apologized for over-estimating your intelligence, what's your problem?

Its not about 'my intelligence' its about your inability to use precise language so that we can understand you properly without having to play guessing games. If you want to debate, remember that use of clear language is key. You atheist mystics need to understand this.

As for the rest of the post, you seem to like to play the game of freakish assertions. Lets evaluate what you said:

Ever hear of the scientific method?
Yes, ever try to test the scientific method? How would you test it? Why do you accept it? Is it self authenticating? Why is it self authenticating? Can the scientific method be the wrong 'method' ? What if this method is wrong at determining what truth is? Why do you give this method unquestioned allegiance instead of questioning the method itself? Is it perhaps that your blindly followed the imperially sanctioned dogma of naturalism by your scientist gods?

Now, I'll ask again can you empirically justify an empirical epistemology? If an empirical epistemology fails at this point, then you cannot even begin to assert that things like cross examination, experiments or testing assist you because they simply beg the question.

Are you seriously complaining because I do not take unverifiable supernatural things into account for what happens in the world?

Firstly, as I said the picture need not be interpreted in the sense you are. You want to take it literally because you are assuming we're some fundamentalists (in the pejorative sense), but you forget that we don't take this picture as literally as you would. In fact, since Christian history attests to a theology of providence that accounts for God's care of his creation, there is no reason to even assume that this picture is literally speaking of a literal miracle, but a providential guidance of God. Had you familiarized yourself with Christian theology you'd know at least this much. Of course, why would someone who claims to be an opponent of the faith know what the faith is? You're just a parasite.

Finally stop being so mystical...since when can you use an unverifiable formula for determining truth? Will you concede that you assume a test that cannot be tested, and is merely assumed so that you can receive proper results? Have you ever tested the scientific method? Or is it self authenticating?

As I said, given your mindset, it'd be impossible to disprove the existence of any god.


Since when should Christians 'prove God'? We're not here to 'prove' God. He's made it manifestly clear, you supress the truth in unrighteousness you're not some honest seeker just trying to find a God. You hate Him. You hate Him so much you'd become a parasite on Christian websites about evangelism and debate Christians all day to silence your conscience. In fact we're not even here to convert you. The Gospel doesn't simply soften people, it also damns them.

Reynold said...

Javier said, quoting me:

I've already apologized for over-estimating your intelligence, what's your problem?


Its not about 'my intelligence' its about your inability to use precise language so that we can understand you properly without having to play guessing games.
No, it's about your intelligence...everyone else I've talked to when I've used that phrase was able to understand it. Why not you? Besides, I've explained it to you already, why are you still whining?

If you want to debate, remember that use of clear language is key. You atheist mystics need to understand this.
"Mystics"? Where are you pulling this nonesense from? I notice that you for some reason excuse Trish' ambiguity with her picture later on in your post. Typical double standard.


As for the rest of the post, you seem to like to play the game of freakish assertions. Lets evaluate what you said:

Ever hear of the scientific method?
Yes, ever try to test the scientific method? How would you test it? Why do you accept it? Is it self authenticating? Why is it self authenticating? Can the scientific method be the wrong 'method' ? What if this method is wrong at determining what truth is?
Self-corroboration and experience help. Here, since you're so obviously ignorant of the scientific method, try googling for it.

Until you understand what it is you're talking about, it's usless to try to discuss it with you.

Why do you give this method unquestioned allegiance instead of questioning the method itself?
Read up on it's history please. Do you honestly think that it was unquestioned when it was first devised? It was developed over time, and built up on with successful experiences.

If it's blind devotion you want, I'd refer you to your own philosophy. Remember what you said to Beleth? "Christians shouldn't wonder"...?

Is it perhaps that your blindly followed the imperially sanctioned dogma of naturalism by your scientist gods?
"scientists gods"? Now look who's building strawmen. You obviously don't have a clue. If scientists were gods, we'd worship them. We don't. If a scientists gets caught breaking the law, they should be busted like everyone else, and not held above the law. Say, like, your god, for instance.

If scientists were "gods", there'd be no such thing as peer-review to help them catch each other's mistakes. There'd be no such thing as experiments to test theories.

Theories are tentatively proposed until they can be verified over and over again.

Now, I'll ask again can you empirically justify an empirical epistemology?
As an example, look where all of the medicines that people rely on came from, the computer you use, etc. etc. etc.

That's more than any "supernatural epistemology" has ever gotten us. We go with what's been shown to work, and also with something that has a little bit of self-correction built into the process, unlike faith, where as you said: "Christians shouldn't wonder".


If an empirical epistemology fails at this point, then you cannot even begin to assert that things like cross examination, experiments or testing assist you because they simply beg the question.
Again, given your epistemology, look who's talking. Besides, the emprical epistomology has a proven track record. That's why we're not still in the dark ages of supernaturalistic belief.

Are you seriously complaining because I do not take unverifiable supernatural things into account for what happens in the world?
Firstly, as I said the picture need not be interpreted in the sense you are.
Is it my fault that Trish is "ambiguous"? You should save your little rant at the beginning of the post for her.

You want to take it literally because you are assuming we're some fundamentalists (in the pejorative sense), but you forget that we don't take this picture as literally as you would. In fact, since Christian history attests to a theology of providence that accounts for God's care of his creation, there is no reason to even assume that this picture is literally speaking of a literal miracle, but a providential guidance of God.
Evidence please? As I said, it's not my fault that she's ambiguous. Odd that you blame me for your failure to understand what I was saying, but when your friend Trish makes the same kind of mistake, you don't blame her.

Nice.

Had you familiarized yourself with Christian theology you'd know at least this much.
Had you familiarized yourself with common sense, you'd have known what I was talking about by there being "no pilot" available to land the plane (due to heart attack or something).

Only a complete dullard would not be able to figure out what I meant: You actually thought that I figured the plane would be able to take off without a pilot??

Of course, why would someone who claims to be an opponent of the faith know what the faith is?
Easy. Ever hear of "know your enemy"? This shows that you know nothing of science or peer-reviewing. Scientific views when they're first proposed also have opponents. The opponents study the other side to see who's right. Eventually, it gets settled.

You're just a parasite.
How so, fool? What did I take? Some spare electrons that some sycophant could have used to post here instead? Nothing's stopping them from posting just because I am.


Finally stop being so mystical...since when can you use an unverifiable formula for determining truth?
Not being mystical at all. Kindly learn a little bit about what your yakking about. All you're doing is showing your complete ignoranct.

Take some philosophy and history of science courses, please.

Will you concede that you assume a test that cannot be tested, and is merely assumed so that you can receive proper results?
No, because it's a strawman that you've made up. What you're describing sounds more like your belief system than any others.

You've never justified it yet by the way.

Only asserted.

Have you ever tested the scientific method? Or is it self authenticating?
People have been testing it since it was first devised. Remember what I was saying about a "track record"?

As I said, given your mindset, it'd be impossible to disprove the existence of any god.

Since when should Christians 'prove God'?
Since you're trying to convert people, some evidence would be nice...Besides, did you ever hear of apologetics?

We're not here to 'prove' God. He's made it manifestly clear,
Would you say the same thing to someone who'd never seen a bible or heard of "Christ" before? If so, explain please, with examples.

you supress the truth in unrighteousness
Care to prove it beyond your own self-righteous bigoted assertions?

I say you're just making false accusations.

Isn't that how fanatical muslims feel also? How is your attitude any different?


you're not some honest seeker just trying to find a God.
I was until I realized that what I was looking for wasn't there after all.

You hate Him. You hate Him so much you'd become a parasite on Christian websites about evangelism and debate Christians all day to silence your conscience. In fact we're not even here to convert you. The Gospel doesn't simply soften people, it also damns them.
"Hate" him? I can no more "hate" your god than I can "hate" The Big Bad wolf or Freddy Krueger. Those I hate are those like you who so devalue human life that you figure that the glory of this "god" of yours is worth the deaths and suffering of billions of people.

Care to explain how that "glorification through death" works? I'd like to see if Trish uses that in her little conversions speeches.

incitatus said...

Your God give children cancer.

Your God murders.

Your God is complicit in every misery.

You God created Ebola, Dengue fever and a host of other horrors.

This is the work of a psychopath, not an entity to be revered.

I feel very sorry for you people.

Fish with Trish said...

Incitatus:

Yes. My God, the God of this universe and all that exists, does allow all those things. In that, God gives His creation life, and God takes that life away when God, in all His wisdom, decides is the best time. But this is not the work of a psychopath.

This creation is a rebellious creation; and God, being God, and the Creator, can do whatever He wishes, and still remains just.

We are the psychopaths - rebelling against the very God that gives us life; hating the very God that created and decrees everything (including our fate); and more insane, the very thing you're doing - using the brain God gave you to try and out-think the creator of your brain (as if this were possible) - do you really believe that God created your brain in a way that would allow it to out-think God (if that were even possible), and then allow you to RIGHTFULLY and RATIONALLY put God on the stand to answer US?? You have a misguided and deceived view of God and man, and which is who?

Javier said...

A few things:
Mr. Dense has constantly made appeals to the fruit of the scientific method as evidence that empiricism is consistent. But this is simply begging the question, suppose I wanted to defend a position by appealing to the results the position produces? But the results of scientific testing are equally disastrous as they are beneficial. If Mr. Dense would like to argue that scientific testing produces proper results then perhaps he would also likke to defend that on the basis of errors made by scientific testing?

So that we can argue that if the validity of the scientific method rests on its ability to produce successes we can argue that its ability to produce disaster stands opposed to the argument that its valid on the basis of its successes.

So that if Mr. Dense (as dense as he is) argues for the validity of the scientific method based on its successes or 'track record' as he calls it, then he's actually shooting himself in the foot. He's foolishly set himself up for failure.

If he claims its valid on that basis, then I can claim its invalid on the basis that its produced disasters.

Therefore a track record as Mr. Dense claims cannot be the basis for determining the validity of the scientific method.

I'm not saying the method is invalid, but rather I'm asking why he's assuming its validity without being able to test it. Can he escape this epistemological calamity? I'm not so sure. He can continue to be delusional about his 'secure' and 'firm' belief. But its just his namby pampy futility in thought.

Furthermore, why is the scientific method valid on the basis that it has a 'good' track record? Isn't he presupposing that benefits to humanity equals validity in use?
There are scientific discoveries that have benefited humanity, but been disastrous to nature. Does Mr. Dense care to then consider the invalidity of this method on the basis that it has a 'bad track record' ?

I can easily assert that on the basis of its failures the scientific method cannot be valid as a means of knowledge. Which was the original argument.

Since you're trying to convert people, some evidence would be nice...Besides, did you ever hear of apologetics?

Who said we were trying to convert you? I'm sorry, but you misunderstand the Christian view of evangelism. We're not here simply to proclaim the good news, its definitely good. But its also a threat. Repent or you will perish, and God will see you to the fire. You can mock Him, but he will not be mocked. Repent and trust in Christ and you will be saved.

Reynold said...

It seems javier is still brainless when he pretends to know about how the scientific method works.

He's not bothered to read up on it to see that it's "presuppositions" have been thoroughly tested, and are continually refined through time.

So that if Mr. Dense (as dense as he is) argues for the validity of the scientific method based on its successes or 'track record' as he calls it, then he's actually shooting himself in the foot. He's foolishly set himself up for failure.

If he claims its valid on that basis, then I can claim its invalid on the basis that its produced disasters.

Please, give us some examples of how the scientific method itself produced disasters and not people finding destructive uses for science, or people disregarding safety rules, or people not knowing enough about what they are doing.

See if you are smart enough to figure out the point, javier.

Therefore a track record as Mr. Dense claims cannot be the basis for determining the validity of the scientific method.
A brainless excuse as I've ever heard.

In that case then, I can link to Judaic sites that refute the nonesense of "messianic prophecies" and refute the christian religion itself.

I'm not saying the method is invalid, but rather I'm asking why he's assuming its validity without being able to test it.
It has been tested, many times throughout history. If you're that stupid or that ignorant, it's a waste of time trying to explain anything to you.

Can he escape this epistemological calamity? I'm not so sure. He can continue to be delusional about his 'secure' and 'firm' belief. But its just his namby pampy futility in thought.
No, it's just you doing what theists do best; throwing up a bunch of philosophical gobbldegook and pretending that you're wise.

Amy said...

Thought you might like to see this

http://theologica.blogspot.com/2009/03/hudson-river-landing.html

a voice crying out......

beleth said...

In response to my statement "One wonders why God saw fit to cause the crisis in the first place":

Javier said, "I don't wonder, Christians shouldn't wonder...are you a Christian?"

To that I reply:
Any Christian who doesn't wonder about God and His impact on this world and on our lives is not a Christian either. One who does that is a mere parrot.

Fish with Trish said, "There is a saying, 'Behind every frowning providence is the sovereign smile of God.' Who are we to question what is truly good and what is evil?? God is Sovereign (in control) in all of these things, too."

It depends on how you define "good", really. If you define it as "God's will," and you agree with Javier that "um, all things that happen are God's will," then that leads to the conclusion that all things are good... and if all things are good, then Jesus' death and resurrection were utterly meaningless. I'm more than happy to discuss how to reconcile that paradox, but since I'm about three months late to this party, I doubt anyone is even reading this.