TSR Christian Society (X-SOC) Episode IV: A New Hope Watch

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(Original post by Lilio Candidior)
I've been an member on TSR for about six years now. I've seen many sharp minds and friendly faces among the debaters here in D&D Religion, and many have come and gone. Now it is time for me to go. My studies are over. I'll soon be ordained a priest and sent to the vineyard, so I think it's time for me to stop hanging around a student forum. It would be very unfair to my adversaries if nothing else.

I cherish the lessons that regular debate has taught me, and I will remember with fondness members who I've sparred with regularly over the years. I'd like to think of debating as a sort of darwinism of ideas. It is here that weak ideas come to die. It forces you to evaluate yourself and why you believe what you believe. Many hours have been spent building up seemingly impervious apologia, which are then shattered by a perceptive question. I've sharpened my retorts, honed my arguments and, above all, learned that it all must be tempered by a sense of humanity.

Christ be with you.
You were one of the best members on this forum, always arguing your great points very well and never resorting to insult. You'll be missed mate.
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Autistic Merit
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I was challenged at church today by the gospel. I've heard it hundreds and hundreds of times but I always doubt about whether I've made a full commitment. Does anyone else ever have the issue that they've heard the gospel so many times that it loses its freshness? Kind of like when you've heard a hymn so often that you know all the words and don't necessarily think about them as much as you should.
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greeneyedgirl
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(Original post by Mazzini)
So, like Hot Fuzz but global? :mmm: :getmecoat:
Nope a lot darker, more Wind Singer/Hunger Games

(Original post by Lilio Candidior)
I've been an member on TSR for about six years now. I've seen many sharp minds and friendly faces among the debaters here in D&D Religion, and many have come and gone. Now it is time for me to go. My studies are over. I'll soon be ordained a priest and sent to the vineyard, so I think it's time for me to stop hanging around a student forum. It would be very unfair to my adversaries if nothing else.

I cherish the lessons that regular debate has taught me, and I will remember with fondness members who I've sparred with regularly over the years. I'd like to think of debating as a sort of darwinism of ideas. It is here that weak ideas come to die. It forces you to evaluate yourself and why you believe what you believe. Many hours have been spent building up seemingly impervious apologia, which are then shattered by a perceptive question. I've sharpened my retorts, honed my arguments and, above all, learned that it all must be tempered by a sense of humanity.

Christ be with you.
I hope everything goes well for you in future :yep:

(Original post by Stiff Little Fingers)
Sorry hun, but I've got to disagree there - Lane-Craig's arguments are just rehashes of ones people have faced so many times they could pull them apart in their sleep (Paley's watch, KCA etc.), which makes them pretty poor in terms of debating: he tends to resort to the gish gallop (which is essentially, say as much as you can as fast as you can) in order to score any points against his opponents.
I wouldn't say all his arguments ARE easy to pull apart...but maybe I just don't listen to enough debates...
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Stiff Little Fingers
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(Original post by greeneyedgirl)
I wouldn't say all his arguments ARE easy to pull apart...but maybe I just don't listen to enough debates...
It's not that they're easy to pull apart, it's that they've been rebuked so many times that anyone who's looked into the rebuttals could comprehensively rip them apart, because the errors he makes have been covered in such detail as a result.
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IMakeSenseToNone
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Raaandom video, of the daaaay!


(Original post by Autistic Merit)
I was challenged at church today by the gospel. I've heard it hundreds and hundreds of times but I always doubt about whether I've made a full commitment. Does anyone else ever have the issue that they've heard the gospel so many times that it loses its freshness? Kind of like when you've heard a hymn so often that you know all the words and don't necessarily think about them as much as you should.
Pretty much, diversifying is good though, it's been a fair while since I read the lesser known letters in the NT so i'm hoping when I go back to them i'll connect with them more. It's just a better of findings the books which particularly grab you (for me it's Job, Ecclesiastes and John which I can only presume makes me pessimistic and dull ) and appropiating it to yourself as that's what induces passion and a connection with the work. There's a thing in James about a mirror which a few Christian existentialists have used as an allegory for the Bible, if you hear the Bible without taking the time to appropiate it to yourself then it's like looking at your reflection and then moving on, if you do however appropiate it then that reflection becomes a part of yourself and then hopefully you'll get the feeling of commitment and engagement.

Although the fact you're worried about whether you've made the commitment is a good thing, it shows it's important to you and that you're striving and a part of being a Christian is that continious renewl of said commitment more than just a one time thing (imho). All the best :penguinhug:
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Diety
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(Original post by IMakeSenseToNone)
In my defense I did say he was good for opening up the possiblity of God if not proving them

They're certainly sound but i'm not sure how you can disprove 'There was an entity which created everything' which is why his debates can be tedious on occasion, but when I was an agnostic non-Christian they were never enough to convince, just to make me stay in my 'can't know' phase. Which I still have of course (i'm Christian agnostic) but Kierkegaard and the grace of God added the Christian bit :^_^:

He certainly wins debates but for me personally, it's mostly because he's a beast at them, heck he could argue that i'm a unicorn and i'd probably believe him. You have to be a pretty darn good debator to use the same arguments so much and yet still run circles around people :yep:

Really, Hitchens thought he was good? Ha, fair play, fair play. I have seen their debate and he did seem rather out of his depth.



It's mostly right but it's perphaps a slightly simplistic view of Kierkegaard which is sadly sometimes more well known than his actual position He's a royal pain to understand as he writes under assumed names, uses humour and is fairly meta as different assumed authors have different positions and beliefs which illustrate a point but aren't always Kierkegaard's own thoughts. Sometimes he's misattributed to the phrase 'leap of faith' but it's more a 'suspension of reason'. When trying to find essential truth we use reason but find we cannot know it through that alone, here we have the paradox in Kierkegaard's use of the word which relates more to the absurd and the incomphrensible, not a contradiction. Again it's in Danish originally so we need to know what he means be these words not how we use them, the absurd in Kierkegaard occurs in events such as devoting your life you don't know for certain exists, Abraham sacrificing Isaac and Jesus being divine and Man at once. It doesn't necessarily mean the insane. If we remove the paradoxical elements we then try to objectify something we can't know or remove the role of faith. He believes this to be wrong for a few reasons but the only one I can remember is that it would means human reason is such that we can remove any possibility with 100% confidence. At the paradox we do two things, take emotional offence which can be ethical or esthetic or take an act of subjective, individual faith:

"Just as the concept "faith" is an altogether distinctively Christian term, so
in turn is "offense" an altogether distinctively Christian term relating to faith. The possibility of offense is the crossroad, or it is like standing at the crossroad. From the possibility of offense, one turns either to offenseor to faith, but one never comes to faith except from the possibility of offense....Offense...relates to the God-man and has two forms. It is either in relation to the loftiness that one is offended, that an individual human being claims to be God, acts or speaks in a manner that manifests God...or the offense is in relation to lowliness, that the one who is God is this lowly human being, suffering as a lowly human being.... The God-man is the paradox, absolutely the paradox. Therefore, it is altogether certain that the understanding must come to a standstill on it (p. 81f.)."

Faith does indeed help to removed the 'angst' of our lives if we take it seriously enough as God is 'through which all things are possible' and so we are able to devote our lives to finite and the infinite at the same time, physical things and people, make them a part of our passionate self-idenity and not worry about the suffering they would cause if they were lost or stopped as God will find a way. But this is about the stages of life so will take far too long to go into detail over Anywho, Kierkegaard believes that proofs ala WLC, those found in nature and most importantly, in Scripture are all pointers to God but are not things we should build out faith on, instead we do that through Christ, the constant renewing of our faith (not just a one time decision), suspension of pure reason, the value we put on the faith and the passion we hold for it, personal experience and through appropiation. Faith to Kierkegaard is best defined as "the objective uncertainty along with the repulsion of the absurd held fast in the passion of inwardness which precisely is inwardness potentiated to the highest degree.” In Kierkegaards view we cannot make this 'leap of faith' by ourselves, instead God makes the first movement of truth after our movement of resignation although he doesn't expand much on this so I can only guess he means via the Holy Spirit which speaks to us in different times through different means.

So hopefully that's all correct He's one of the most nuianced philosphers going and one of the most complex but I think I got most of it down right. He's not as anti-reason as people make him sound but he believed if you go in with 100% belief than you will not have authentic faith as your passionate attachment to it will be lessened if you believe it exists outside of you. I -think- that Kierkegaard belives that we only relate to th 'Truth' and divine individually and subjectively so we there is an objective truth we all do it differently, hence why it inspires passion and not complacency. Or something like that :lol:

I could just ralk about him forever :awesome: I think I did actually.
Thanks for taking the effort to fully explain; I think I actually agree with much if not all of that, or the bits I understand

I guess the former three are more apologists than theologians, so I presume the latter must just interest me much more :dontknow: Lewis and Chesterton are wonderful writers so they can be fun sometimes just because they're so eloquent.
Apologists are very important; great Christian philosophers and theologians have great ideas, but it's eloquent writers who make them accessible to the laity.

(Original post by Mazzini)
It wasn't me :nah: but if you're offering :colone: :mmm:
I'll PM it to you

I'm applying for theology or modern languages, not sure yet. I also need to meet the Oxbridge deadline (for Oxford, not Cambridge) as well so I'm getting a bit of a move on with it

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Does Oxford do theology? It wasn't on their prospectus when I applied..

(Original post by OurSeaBee)
If there is one word that will sum Orthodoxy up, it's "mystery." Everything is considered mysterious. The great advantage of apophaticism is that we don't feel the need to rationalise everything. Rationalism is a very Western idea!

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Exactly; it is refreshing to find a Church that is this humble about its knowledge of God.

(Original post by Autistic Merit)
Any Evangelicals in here? Anyway, we should all be at church now.

My Spurgeon daily verse is:

For it is written:
“I will destroy the wisdom of the wise;
the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate.” 1 Cor 1:19
Hi there! Welcome to the soc! I'm not personally evangelical - more Orthodox, but these two are
(Original post by James A)
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(Original post by greeneyedgirl)
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Diety
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(Original post by Stiff Little Fingers)
It's not that they're easy to pull apart, it's that they've been rebuked so many times that anyone who's looked into the rebuttals could comprehensively rip them apart, because the errors he makes have been covered in such detail as a result.
I don't think they're nearly as dead in the water as most atheists think. Many of the counters are deeply flawed, for example the use of Kant's criticisms against the Ontological argument.
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IMakeSenseToNone
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(Original post by Diety)
Thanks for taking the effort to fully explain; I think I actually agree with much if not all of that, or the bits I understand



Apologists are very important; great Christian philosophers and theologians have great ideas, but it's eloquent writers who make them accessible to the laity.
It's a pain to explain sadly as the words used with him are either different than our own because of the Danish translation or have a whole book of background on. Glad you like him more now :yep: His book on love is a good start if you get interested as it's got a lot of good stuff and is fairly easy compared to his magnum opus of Fear and Trembling and Sickness Unto Death. HL Dreyfuss does a superb lecture series on him which you can get online if you're ever interested :godancing: One good thing about Kierkegaard is that that's a lot of info on him to help explain it.

It'll be interesting to see how many 'high theologian' thinkers are actually good communicators of their own ideas, Pascal for example is a headache and a half, Kierkegaard is old language, iffy translations, meta-humour, fictional narratives and comments only his ex-fiance is supposed to understand... I'm honestly not sure if he understood himself sometimes. Augustine and Karl Barth are actually fairly good though... Any one else we can think of? :beard:
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Stiff Little Fingers
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(Original post by Diety)
I don't think they're nearly as dead in the water as most atheists think. Many of the counters are deeply flawed, for example the use of Kant's criticisms against the Ontological argument.
Teleological argument (Paley's Watch/Boeing 747) is long dead, it's based on a massive lack of biological knowledge.
KCA has been taken apart by several physicists - I like Hawking's response "discussing before the big bang is like discussing what's north of the north pole".

The counters for both of those are well grounded and don't really bare worth talking about.

As for the ontological argument, well I'm happy with people using that, because it's implications play into arguments against the morality of god. Still, as I've said; most of Lane-Craig's material has been repeatedly covered and taken apart, as a philosopher he's comical.
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OurSeaBee
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(Original post by Autistic Merit)
I was challenged at church today by the gospel. I've heard it hundreds and hundreds of times but I always doubt about whether I've made a full commitment. Does anyone else ever have the issue that they've heard the gospel so many times that it loses its freshness? Kind of like when you've heard a hymn so often that you know all the words and don't necessarily think about them as much as you should.
I'm challenged by it every time I read it or hear it read. Life is a constant process of repentance, of metanoia, of turning back to God.

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Autistic Merit
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(Original post by OurSeaBee)
I'm challenged by it every time I read it or hear it read. Life is a constant process of repentance, of metanoia, of turning back to God.

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Can I ask what denomination you are?
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kb5462
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(Original post by Autistic Merit)
I was challenged at church today by the gospel. I've heard it hundreds and hundreds of times but I always doubt about whether I've made a full commitment. Does anyone else ever have the issue that they've heard the gospel so many times that it loses its freshness? Kind of like when you've heard a hymn so often that you know all the words and don't necessarily think about them as much as you should.
I always say that the path to sanctification is paved with uncomfortable revelations; being reminded of the Gospel is often one of those. The Gospel is a thing that requires more than just an inward, emotive, passive response; it requires something active to be done. It's not perfect people who live the Gospel; those who live the Gospel are perfected by it.

Then again, I'm somewhat of a romantic in my view of all things theological :P
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Autistic Merit
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(Original post by kb5462)
The Gospel is a thing that requires more than just an inward, emotive, passive response; it requires something active to be done.
Yeah, this is what challenges me the most. Whether my response is just an emotive or intellectual one rather than an active one.
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kb5462
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(Original post by Autistic Merit)
Yeah, this is what challenges me the most. Whether my response is just an emotive or intellectual one rather than an active one.
Best thing to do is fake it til you make it, I've found. It's weird, but the more you live the Gospel, the more you end up loving it, it seems, rather than the other way round!
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Autistic Merit
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(Original post by kb5462)
Best thing to do is fake it til you make it, I've found. It's weird, but the more you live the Gospel, the more you end up loving it, it seems, rather than the other way round!
Yes, I find Christianity very confusing though. Because 'living the gospel' can sometimes become just trying to follow the Law (i.e. salvation by works) and forgetting about grace. But at the same time saying "we're saved by grace so I can just sit and watch rubbish TV while scratching my back 24/7" is wrong too.


This isn't a criticism of what you said, it's just a train of thought I've been having today.
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kb5462
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(Original post by Autistic Merit)
Yes, I find Christianity very confusing though. Because 'living the gospel' can sometimes become just trying to follow the Law (i.e. salvation by works) and forgetting about grace. But at the same time saying "we're saved by grace so I can just sit and watch rubbish TV while scratching my back 24/7" is wrong too.


This isn't a criticism of what you said, it's just a train of thought I've been having today.
Ah, well as an Anglo-Catholic, I see a grand difference between salvation and sanctification. Salvation is by faith alone, yup. Sanctification is a process that takes time and effort and hard work.
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(Original post by kb5462)
Ah, well as an Anglo-Catholic, I see a grand difference between salvation and sanctification. Salvation is by faith alone, yup. Sanctification is a process that takes time and effort and hard work.
Sorry but what does Anglo-Catholic mean? Is it a type of Anglicanism or a type of Catholicism?
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kb5462
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(Original post by Autistic Merit)
Sorry but what does Anglo-Catholic mean? Is it a type of Anglicanism or a type of Catholicism?
That's the question without an answer, really depends on who you ask.

I am a baptised and confirmed member of the Anglican Communion who is High-Church, effectively sharing doctrine and belief with the Roman Catholic Church. However, I'm not in communion with Rome. So, I am a Catholic (by definition of the Nicene, Apostles and Athanasian creeds), but I am not a Roman​ Catholic.
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chickenonsteroids
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Today was the fourth time someone mentioned my Cambridge rejection :lolwut: I don't get it :lol:

But on the plus side, I wrote a blog post about why hatred is harmful and it's my most popular so far :yep:
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Autistic Merit
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(Original post by kb5462)
That's the question without an answer, really depends on who you ask.

I am a baptised and confirmed member of the Anglican Communion who is High-Church, effectively sharing doctrine and belief with the Roman Catholic Church. However, I'm not in communion with Rome. So, I am a Catholic (by definition of the Nicene, Apostles and Athanasian creeds), but I am not a Roman​ Catholic.
Wow, that was more complicated than I ever thought it could be! Glad we can all go by the simple label of 'Christian' though.
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