Monday, October 19, 2009

Are You Worthy of Love?

No matter who you are

No matter what you’ve done

No matter what other people think about you

No matter what you think about yourself

God - Loves - YOU

44 comments:

PersonalFailure said...

Actually, that's a good description of my mom. She'd love me if I went on an ax-murdering spree. She'd turn me in to the police, but she'd still love me.

Hi, mom!

Makarios said...

It's good to have someone like that in your life.

My parents died quite awhile ago but ya, the same. They just loved me. When I got kicked out of school halfway through grade 11they could hardly believe the Principal would say those awful things about their boy.

Ginx said...

I know God loves me, but I think we should see other people. It's not Him, it's me.

Also, I would appreciate if He told me Himself. It's annoying how He sends His friends around to pimp Him out. Grow a pair and talk to me yourself, God.

Ginx said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Chris Mackey said...

He loves you. But he will throw you into a lake of fire if you don't do what he wants.

Makarios said...

Chris that is so old, and lame

Ginx said...

Chris: It is my understanding that Christian theology does not place God in the role of deciding who goes to heaven or hell; that choice is the individuals.

To understand Christianity's mdoel of the afterlife, one must think of sin as being not "evil," but "unclean," or as I prefer, "pollution."

It's not that the Christian God doesn't want everyone to join Him in heaven, it's that He knows that inviting everyone would make it impossible to keep heaven a paradise.

SmartLX said...

It's a non sequitur. God's love isn't apparently dependent on our worthiness, so there's no answer to the question here.

Chris Mackey said...

God is powerless NOT to throw you into a lake of fire. Poor guy, being forced to torture his creations. :-(

JD Curtis said...

God is powerless NOT to throw you into a lake of fire. Poor guy, being forced to torture his creations.

Dumb. You throw yourself into the lake of fire Chris.

SmartLX said...

Well come on now, JD. Is God able to send someone to Heaven who has died with a mortal sin unconfessed? Is He able to break His own rules? Or are there some things even He can't do?

JD Curtis said...

God is just. What kind of God would He be if sin went unpunished?

SmartLX said...

Quite possibly a more loving, more merciful and more reasonable God, that's what kind. Especially since not being Saved(tm) is grounds for condemnation, and some people never get the chance.

Anyway, you dodged the question. Whether God would do it is irrelevant. Either He can send sinners to Heaven or penitents to Hell and so His laws are mutable, or He can't do it. Either way, he's not entirely omnipotent.

JD Curtis said...

Quite possibly a more loving, more merciful and more reasonable God, that's what kind

So somebody who was an unrepentant murderer, liar, rapist, jaywalker should be entitied to Heaven? I don't follow your logic.

Especially since not being Saved(tm) is grounds for condemnation, and some people never get the chance.

Question. If someone is living in a part of the world that prevented them from ever hearing the gospel that you freely reject, would they be held to the same standard on Judgement Day?

Either He can send sinners to Heaven or penitents to Hell and so His laws are mutable, or He can't do it. Either way, he's not entirely omnipotent.

People have freewill to determine if one accepts the grace of God. To think that a person is completely passive in the decision and has no say in the matter is incorrect.

Chris Mackey said...

God is powerless NOT to throw you into a lake of fire. Poor guy, being forced to torture his creations.

Dumb. You throw yourself into the lake of fire Chris.

Not what the Bible says. Revelations. YHWH does the casting.

What kind of God would He be if sin went unpunished?

What makes the difference in the Christian worldview between going to heaven or being "cast into the lake of fire"?
Accepting Jesus*
So why does YHWH throw people into a lake of fire?
Because they haven't accepted Jesus.
So it's not a punishment for sin, it's a punishment for not accepting Jesus.


*Accepting Jesus can be replaced with whatever your version of Christianity teaches.

Makarios said...

Ginx: You seem to have a pretty good understand of Christian theology.

SmartLX: There are many things that God is not able to do. Anything incoherent, which makes up much of atheist thinking on this matter would fall into this category. Anything that goes against His character or His plan would also never happen. Anything that is unjust, such as forcing those who can't stand the thought of God to spend eternity in heaven would be another example.

All people who go to heaven are sinners. In fact most of us who are Christians make up some of the worst sinners this world has ever seen. However, none of these heaven bound sinners are UNFORGIVEN. God could not and would not allow unforgiven sinners into heaven because that would go against His justice and Creator God is perfectly just.

Nevertheless, sometime between now and your last heartbeat, you still have a chance to show us that you really are rational and logical and you can become part of team Jesus.

JD Curtis said...

So why does YHWH throw people into a lake of fire?
Because they haven't accepted Jesus.


This is not entirely correct. You're attacking a strawgod. One's sins get you to the lake of fire. Not some arbitrary decision on the part of God. You have freewill to accept Jesus and forgiveness. God's not going to force you to. You make the call. What could be fairer than that?

SmartLX said...

So somebody who was an unrepentant murderer, liar, rapist, jaywalker should be entitied to Heaven?

The jaywalker, perhaps. I didn't say all sinners, and I meant unrepentant sinners, Mak, though I didn't mean all of them either.

All so-called sins are not equal, not even all "mortal" sins. Gay sex is extra-marital by definition in most places, but it can be every bit as loving as straight sex. Someone who has killed may have done it to save a life, or a country. Such people may well have no reason to confess for what they've done. A reasonable God would keep this in mind.

Question. If someone is living in a part of the world that prevented them from ever hearing the gospel that you freely reject, would they be held to the same standard on Judgement Day?

You tell me. No one seems willing to answer one way or the other, though the guy in the third link personally believes they're held to exactly the same standard and sent to Hell. The others, while unable to escape the doctrines that Original Sin is universal and there is no salvation except through Christ, search hard for exceptions in Scripture. If the final answer is no and the standards are different, the reason will be convoluted.

One's sins get you to the lake of fire. Not some arbitrary decision on the part of God.

And the sins of Adam and Eve, over which we have no say. What was the decision to spread responsibility for that to everybody, if not arbitrary?

JD Curtis said...

Gay sex is extra-marital by definition in most places, but it can be every bit as loving as straight sex

This is a matter of youyr opinion. The Bible says it is a sin.

Someone who has killed may have done it to save a life, or a country. Such people may well have no reason to confess for what they've done. A reasonable God would keep this in mind.

There is a world of difference between someone who committed premeditated murder and acts of war.

You tell me. No one seems willing to answer one way or the other, though the guy in the third link personally believes they're held to exactly the same standard and sent to Hell.

Interesting. I look at it this way. IF God exists, then whatever judgement that is metted out will be just.

JD Curtis said...

And the sins of Adam and Eve, over which we have no say. What was the decision to spread responsibility for that to everybody, if not arbitrary?

I might concede the point. It may seem arbitrary. Then what? What will you plead when asked to give an account and you state something the amounts to little more than, "If I was predestined to sin, then I did."

Then what? Did God make you (or anyone else) sin at various times in your life or did you choose to do the wrong thing out of freewill?

SmartLX said...

There is a world of difference between someone who committed premeditated murder and acts of war.

Yes there is. "Thou Shalt Not Kill" does not make that distinction.

IF God exists, then whatever judgement that is metted out will be just.

Will it be just because God metes it out, or will God mete it out because it's just?

What act do you personally think deserves eternal punishment, and why? Is there any way that is just, other than that it's God's will?

What will you plead when asked to give an account...

You ask me to make one assumption too many. If I'm asked to give an account, I'll take responsibility for my actions despite the fact that I don't believe in free will. We all behave as if free will exists; we know no other way.

You seem to think this is about me escaping judgement for my sins. Do you actually accept that I don't believe in God, or are you the type who thinks atheists are Christians in denial?

JD Curtis said...

Yes there is. "Thou Shalt Not Kill" does not make that distinction.

"Indeed, "kill" in English is an all-encompassing verb that covers the taking of life in all forms and for all classes of victims. That kind of generalization is expressed in Hebrew through the verb "harag." However, the verb that appears in the Torah's prohibition is a completely different one, " ratsah" which, it would seem, should be rendered "murder." This root refers only to criminal acts of killing." Link

When you explored the matter, examining the passage in it's original Hebrew, how did you make the decision that no distinctiion was made?

Will it be just because God metes it out, or will God mete it out because it's just?

Mere word play. God is just. He gets to define what is good and just. His rules. If you don't like it, by all means, make another earth and establish your own system.

What act do you personally think deserves eternal punishment, and why? Is there any way that is just, other than that it's God's will?

The Bible tells us that the wages of sin are death. I don't believe in a hierarchy of sins. In God's eyes they are all bad.

If I'm asked to give an account, I'll take responsibility for my actions despite the fact that I don't believe in free will. We all behave as if free will exists; we know no other way.

Whatever

You seem to think this is about me escaping judgement for my sins. Do you actually accept that I don't believe in God, or are you the type who thinks atheists are Christians in denial?

Good question. I really don't know the reason(s) for your unbelief. You are on your own journey through life. I only hope you actually examine the arguments put forward by leading atheists and see them for the red-herrings that they are.

Insofar as the "atheists are Christians in denial" I really don't know that. It does seem though that the atheist goes through alot of trouble trying to explain his worldview of a diety that does not exist (in his/her own mind) and the "God-shaped hole" in their lives is all too evident to me, the casual observer. Just my opinion.

Gorth Satana said...

However, the verb that appears in the Torah's prohibition is a completely different one, " ratsah" which, it would seem, should be rendered "murder." This root refers only to criminal acts of killing.

"Ratsah" is a verb but it means "to be pleased with"
You're thinking of "ratsach".

Gorth Satana said...

"This root refers only to criminal acts of killing"

It's more like "slay" or "slaying", otherwise you'd have your god telling the Israelites to murder people.

SmartLX said...

When you explored the matter, examining the passage in it's original Hebrew, how did you make the decision that no distinctiion was made?

People today aren't taught the Commandments in the original Hebrew, JD. If this one is really "Thou Shalt Not Murder", why is it still so often written as "Kill"? Why has it been left wrongly translated for centuries, including in the KJV? Do the KJV-only crowd make a distinction? Is the "real" translation perhaps saved up for clever believers to sucker-punch unbelievers with it?

God is just. He gets to define what is good and just.

So the genocides and other atrocities committed in God's name in the Old Testament need no justification other than that God ordered them. Maybe you see why someone who doesn't believe in God or the dependence of goodness on Him doesn't see the character as very just at all.

The Bible tells us that the wages of sin are death. I don't believe in a hierarchy of sins. In God's eyes they are all bad.

I didn't ask what the Bible says, or what God sees, or what deserves death. I asked what act, which can be committed in one lifetime, you personally think deserves infinite punishment. In God's position, would you give even the worst offenders eternity in Hell, as opposed to a mere billion years in purgatory (or simply annihilating them)? Wouldn't that about do it for all the sins one person could commit in a century or less? Who deserves more than a billion year sentence?

Ultimately, can you justify God's "justice" without using God's word? Does it actually sit well with you that the people supposedly in Hell will never, ever get out, even those who led good lives as, say, American Hindus?

Makarios said...

LX - You either do what it takes to go to heaven or you go to hell. It's that simple. It has nothing to do with this or that sin. It has nothing to do with how many sins you've committed. If you reject Jesus' offer of salvation, then you don't get salvation.

Does that seem difficult to understand? You're either saved for eternity or you're not saved for eternity.

JD Curtis said...

Is the "real" translation perhaps saved up for clever believers to sucker-punch unbelievers with it?

A google search provided the answer in a fraction of a second. In other words you didnt even bother to investigate the matter yourself. Why do I have the feeling that this isnt the only example of this?

So the genocides and other atrocities committed in God's name in the Old Testament need no justification other than that God ordered them.

Are you referring to the favorite whipping boy of the atheistic set, the Amelkites? You are confusing the terms "good" and "just" with some extra-biblical belief of yours of omnibenevolence. Please advance your arguments, chapter and verse, of God's omnibenevolence. It's bad Sunday school theology at best.

I didn't ask what the Bible says, or what God sees, or what deserves death. I asked what act, which can be committed in one lifetime, you personally think deserves infinite punishment.

Mak answered this. It's obvious that you arent interested in the correct interpretation of the foundational documents of the Christian religion.

Does it actually sit well with you that the people supposedly in Hell will never, ever get out

I don't wish that anyone would go to hell. No, it doesnt "sit well" with me. If someone rejects the gospel, then what can I do? Hold a gun to their head? Get real.

even those who led good lives as, say, American Hindus?

You still havent answered my previous question. If someone is living in a part of the world (like rural India) that prevented them from ever hearing the gospel that you freely reject (like perhaps, certain Hindus in the US) would they both held to the same standard on Judgement Day?

You didnt really provide your answer/opinion on the matter. No, it's not a trick question.

SmartLX said...

JD, if you don't think God's omnibenevolent, we have less to argue about. I hope you do your part to dispel that idea among your fellow believers.

Mak, I understand the concept of salvation, I just think it means that God's love doesn't count for much.

You didn't answer my question on eternal punishment any better than JD did. You told me the way you believe things are, not what you or JD would do in His place.

And if it really is that simple, if you must do what it takes to get into heaven, then there's my answer to your last question, JD. According to Christian doctrine, people who haven't been exposed to the Gospel go to hell, because they haven't done what it takes. They haven't rejected anything (I chose American Hindus because they have rejected the ubiquitous American evangelism, by the way) but according to the core rule, they have not filled the prerequisite and they are damned.

What you see when Christians consider this (see my above links in "no one seems willing") is that many of them will not accept it at face value, so they actively search the Bible for exceptions. Even as they repeat that Jesus is the only way to salvation, they turn Scripture upside down to find loopholes for those innocent people who are ignorant of Jesus. They fail to find any unambiguous cases, so they refrain from giving a definite answer.

These apologists are simply reluctant to admit that God is doing what He appears to be doing: sending people to Hell who never had a chance to be Saved(tm). By any standard except God's, eternity in Hell is too much punishment for ANY earthly act (neither of you seems about to deny this), let alone being born in the wrong place. Their own moral sense protests.

If you simply accept this as the way things are, fine. Do not then present your God as a perfect moral standard which non-believers lack. He is simply a tyrant, and we are slaves and playthings. That He supposedly loves us does not make it all better.

JD Curtis said...

Do not then present your God as a perfect moral standard which non-believers lack

In order to better ascertain the truth of your above assertion, please cite for me a example of a clearly superior "moral standard" that was derived from a naturalistic source for the time that the Bible was written. Let's compare.

Makarios said...

"By any standard except God's,"

His is the only standard that counts - right? Two points:

. The Bible states clearly that no one is without excuse. Everyone in the wholeworld has enough evidence to know that Creator God exists.
- Those who respond positively to the evidence given, regardless of where they live, will be given more evidence.

- It doesn't matter if people don't hear the gospel. If they reject the evidence given then they have rejected their only opportunity "for God" and ipso facto have chosen "no God."

Finally, you ask, "Why would God create billions of people who are destined for hell?" You should be asking, "Why would God create billions of people who deserve hell and save them for heaven?"

Furher, you should ask, "Why would I reject this offer of eternity in paradise and choose eternity in hell, especially when it seems so unfair to me?"

SmartLX said...

JD, the Commandments amounted to a pretty good moral standard for the time, though the law of most lands covered the same ground as the last six Commandments (for example, murder and theft were always crimes), and the first four pertain only to worship. At the very least it was competitive.

God Himself however did not keep to that standard. Either the Commandments didn't apply to Him, or he ignored them. He didn't worship anyone, He had no mother and father to honour, He coveted the believers in every other god, He slayed or cursed those he felt had forsaken Him (Sodom, Babel, the Flood). He merely enforced the standard on humans: "Do as I say, not as I do."

In other words God Himself is not the moral standard, the teachings themselves are. That's especially true if He's not omnibenevolent, as so many believe He is. And the beneficial aspects of the teachings are not entirely unique to Christian morals.

Makarios, that's another really rotten solution to that dilemma: force the choice on everyone in retrospect, and condemn them for not consciously making it. Does the Bible happen to state where the worldwide entry-level evidence is?

Why would God create billions of people who deserve hell and save them for heaven?

Good question, nearly. Why would God create billions of people who deserve hell in the first place, by forcing them to inherit Original Sin? And why would He only Save(tm) some of them, or endow some of them with the desire to be Saved(tm)?

Why would I reject this offer of eternity in paradise and choose eternity in hell, especially when it seems so unfair to me?

Because it's not the only offer out there. If I accept it, I damn myself in the eyes of every other possible god, and there are an infinite number of possible gods. Throwing in with any one of them is a suicidal bet before that god is established as the real one beyond doubt. And there might not be one at all.

Makarios said...

Does the Bible happen to state where the worldwide entry-level evidence is?"

Romans 1:18 - 20

Gorth Satana said...

So no?

SmartLX said...

Romans 1:18-20

18 For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and unrighteousness of men, who hold the truth in unrighteousness;

19 Because that which may be known of God is manifest in them; for God hath shewed it unto them.

20 For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse:

-end Bible quote-

Okay, so it's saying what you said earlier: that the unrighteousness have been shown the evidence. There's nothing useful here about where or what it is.

Kinda frustrating, really. It's like being told, "If you can't figure out why I'm upset, I'm not going to tell you."

Makarios said...

"There's nothing useful here about where or what it is."

Well, it requires some thinking beyond the literal words. That always amazes me. The irony I mean. Atheists are the most literal readers of the Bible yet atheists mock those who hold to what they call a literal translation of the Bible.

Anyhow, it goes back to:
. Either matter is eternal, or

. A Creator that is external to matter brought everything into being.

Those are our only options. Atheists like to think of themselves as sophisticated thinkers, yet those writing at the time of Paul, the author of Romans knew that -

. Anything that exists has an explanation of it’s existence, either in the necessity of its own nature (It can’t NOT exist), or in an external cause.

. If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is external to as well as transcendent to the universe. That is because:

. Existing outside of time, the Cause is infinite or Eternal,

. Existing outside of matter (which is finite), the Cause is immaterial or Spiritual,

. Existing as the Cause of time and energy, space, matter and the laws of physics, the Cause is immeasurably more powerful than the mathematically precise universe and its exquisitely Finely Tuned constants and quantities.

. The Cause cannot be “scientific” because neither matter nor the laws of physics (i.e., the laws that science has observed and identified), existed prior to the Singularity.

. Therefore the Cause of the beginning of the universe is not scientific but Personal.

. The transcendent Cause of the universe is therefore on the order of a Mind.

. That Cause is omniscient, omnipresent, and
omnipotent.
. That Cause, is what is normally described as God.

That is why Paul said, “Since what may be known about God is plain to them because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities - His eternal power and divine nature have been clearly seen being understood from what has been made, so men everywhere are without excuse.”

Do you understand? It just takes a wee bit of contemplation.

Gorth Satana said...

The Cause cannot be “scientific” because neither matter nor the laws of physics (i.e., the laws that science has observed and identified), existed prior to the Singularity.

Therefore the Cause of the beginning of the universe is not scientific but Personal.

The transcendent Cause of the universe is therefore on the order of a Mind
.

I always giggle when you cut and paste this!

Anyhow, it goes back to:
. Either matter is eternal, or

. A Creator that is external to matter brought everything into being.

Those are our only options
.

Anyhow, it goes back to: fallacy of exhaustive hypotheses!

Makarios said...

Each premise is accurate, and that fact is supported by the atheist's valueless gasp - fallacy! fallacy!

If one point is made, the atheist says, "Inadequate evidence. You expect me to believe anything with just one point to it?"

If two points are made the atheist says, "Too much evidence. Can't have that. It makes it a fallacy you know."

You guys are just sad, sad, sad.

Gorth Satana said...

Nonsense.

SmartLX said...

Let's look at the premises, shall we?

Anything that exists has an explanation of it’s existence, either in the necessity of its own nature (It can’t NOT exist), or in an external cause.

You obviously intend God to fit in the first category. So why can't God NOT exist? Why couldn't there simply have been nothing? Or is the reason God must exist the fact that the universe does, which means you've rephrased your conclusion as a premise and you're begging the question?

If the universe has an explanation of its existence, that explanation is external to as well as transcendent to the universe.

Why have you put the universe in the category that needs an external explanation? Why can't it be simply necessary, like you think God is? Your answer to the previous question may help with this.

Existing outside of time, the Cause is infinite or Eternal,

As I said, you've assumed a Cause. While it must be independent of whatever time began with the universe, if any, ours may not be the only system of time.

Existing outside of matter (which is finite), the Cause is immaterial or Spiritual,

Same issue, but with matter instead of time. If there is matter outside of this, a hypothetical Cause could be made of it.

Existing as the Cause of time and energy, space, matter and the laws of physics, the Cause is immeasurably more powerful than the mathematically precise universe...

One bacteria cell can be the direct cause of an identical cell next to it, in a matter of seconds. The action of splashing paint on a wall creates a pattern far more complex than the movement of the paint can. There is no guarantee that a hypothetical Cause of the universe was more complex or powerful, or even AS complex or powerful, as the universe itself.

...and its exquisitely Finely Tuned constants and quantities.

Here you really are begging the question. The fundamental constants of the universe support matter and life, yes. To say over and above this that they are "Tuned" assumes a Tuner. Capitalising it didn't help.

The Cause cannot be “scientific” because neither matter nor the laws of physics (i.e., the laws that science has observed and identified), existed prior to the Singularity.

True if you accept the idea that "scientific" only encompasses what has been observed and identified. If the Cause is made of matter, and/or obeys physical laws, which are external to human experience, then this hardly seems unscientific. It's merely unknown.

Therefore the Cause of the beginning of the universe is not scientific but Personal.

Why those two options? You could have said supernatural, superscientific, miraculous...how is capital-P "Personal" the complete complement to "scientific" (i.e. everything which is not it)?

The transcendent Cause of the universe is therefore on the order of a Mind.

"Mind" is more or less synonymous with "Personal" and could have been omitted.

That Cause is omniscient, omnipresent, and
omnipotent.


- You can nail two boards together without knowing exactly how deep the nail has sunk into the second board, or how sharp it's stayed. The Cause needn't know everything about its creation.
- You can build a go-kart without ever getting in it. The Cause needn't be omnipresent.
- Once you've welded together a Chinese exercise ball, you can't do anything directly to the chimes inside. The Cause need not be omnipotent with regard to the universe now that it's finished.

That Cause, is what is normally described as God.

True, you do describe it as God. The ancient Greeks described it as a whole host of Titans, and their gods came later.

These premises make too many assumptions to be useful to anyone except those who want their own beliefs rewritten to sound logical.

Makarios said...

"Anything that exists has an explanation of it’s"

My bad! It was a very careless error. It should read, Whatever BEGINS to exist has an explanation of its existence. Sorry. This screws up the rest of your replies.
But I'll go with what you've written.
================
Why couldn't there simply have been nothing?

This of course leads into the atheists current favourite explanation, "Everything came from nothing by nothing." It's good for a laugh but not much else.
============

“Why can't it be simply necessary”

No one would suggest that this or any universe is necessary.
=========

“If there is matter outside of this, a hypothetical Cause could be made of it”

Are you suggesting as most atheists seem to be doing that there CAN be an infinite regress of cause?
===============
“The action of splashing paint on a wall creates a pattern far more complex than the movement of the paint can”

Another atheist favourite, the universe caused itself, or in this case, the can of paint threw itself at the wall.
================
“To say over and above this that they are "Tuned" assumes a Tuner”

The constants and quantities were PUT IN prior to Planck time. I know that capitalising won’t help atheists but there are others listening in.
==============
M: The Cause cannot be “scientific” because neither matter nor the laws of physics (i.e., the laws that science has observed and identified), existed prior to the Singularity.

LX: “True”

M: Thank you. Any further explanation on your part simply moves the same argument one step further back. Except in the real world, there cannot be an infinite regress of cause.
==============
“You could have said supernatural, superscientific, miraculous”

That’s what I am saying. In fact the bringing into being of the universe is a working definition of a miracle.
===============

SmartLX said...

Glad you cleared that up. Much of what I said still applies because I went with the premises as they came up, for instance supposing a Cause.

Are you suggesting as most atheists seem to be doing that there CAN be an infinite regress of cause?

Yes, given infinite time. Given infinite matter as well, for example in a multiverse, it's even easier. Given a single infinite universe which has always existed, even prior to the (last known) Big Bang, it's not even a regress - it needs no more explanation than God.

Another atheist favourite, the universe caused itself, or in this case, the can of paint threw itself at the wall.

I had already assumed a Cause at this point, for argument's sake. I was merely arguing that even if there was one, it need not have been a greater entity in any particular respect than the universe itself.

The constants and quantities were PUT IN prior to Planck time.

I get it now, you don't actually mind that you're begging the question. The constants and quantities have not apparently changed at least since Planck time, but we'll get nowhere if you simply assert that they were 1. adjustable and 2. deliberately adjusted.

LX: “True”

M: Thank you.


Talk about quote mining. I accepted your premise within your definition of "scientific", before completely rejecting that definition.

More importantly, please rule out the general case of an infinite regress, including the general cyclical case, instead of just ridiculing it. Or move on.

Makarios said...

“supposing a Cause.”

We are not supposing a cause in the sense that you seem to mean i.e., we start with that.

All of our observations go to confirming the thesis that everything that begins to exits has a cause that is external to itself. This is not religion, this is science. As you suggested that cause will be outside of science, outside of physics outside of matter.
=============
“Yes, given infinite time.”

Wow! So you believe there can be an be an infinite regress of cause. Am I hearing you correctly that you also believe that matter can be eternal, AND that you believe that the material infinite does in fact exist? Is that what you’re saying?
================

“I had already assumed a Cause at this point, for argument's sake. I was merely arguing that even if there was one, it need not have been a greater entity in any particular respect than the universe itself.”

So perhaps one can of paint threw the other can of paint?
=================
As to infinite regress of universes, I'll start with the scientific and if you want I'll move on to the philisophical. Other than the fact that the infinite does not exist except as theoretical, here’s the facts:

Borde, Guth and Vilenkin have been able to extend their conclusion of the past-incomplete cyclic universe to the following atheist Origin Of The Universe Mythologies.
Oscillating universe -

Baby universes -

Multi verses -

The Cyclic Ekpyrotic Scenario -

The Chaotic Inflationary universe -

Brane-cosmology -

Inflationary multi-verse -

Bubble universes floating in a sea of false vacuum -

The many worlds hypothesis -

The black hole hypothesis -

Quantum gravity models -

Vacuum fluctuation models -

Imaginary time and imaginary space -

The conclusion they reached (google Borde-Guth-Vilenkin Theorem) is that any model of an expanding universe, be it theoretical like the ones just mentioned or real, such as our own, is geodesically incomplete, or past-incomplete without a past finite space / time boundary.

What the atheists who are challenging what I’m saying don’t understand is that the phrase, “past-incomplete implies the need for an initial singularity. That means that ANY model of an expanding universe cannot be past-eternal. See www.phy.princeton.edu/~steinh/ under, “Answers to Frequently Asked Questions: Has the cyclic model been cycling forever.”

Now it used to be the case that those atheists who were rightly terrified of the implications of a universe with a beginning could hide behind our ignorance of pre Planck time events. In fact, those who remain ignorant regarding this theorem continue to say, “We just don’t know,” as though that somehow absolves them of their ignorance. It does not.

The Borde-Guth-Vilenkin Theorem does not depend upon any physical description or knowledge of the pre Plank time era. This theorem rids atheists of any hope of avoiding a singularity, a beginning, a Big Bang Creation Event. This is true PARTICULARLY for Dawkins’ favourite myth, the eternal inflationary multi-verse.

Because, in the eyes of biassed and bigoted atheists, I’m just a stupid Christian who couldn’t possibly know anything of value in this area, I leave you with the words of Vilenkin himself.

“It is said that an Argument is what convinces reasonable men, and a Proof is what it takes to convince an unreasonable man. With the proof now in place, cosmologists can no longer hide behind the possibility of a past-eternal universe. There is no escape, they have to face the problem of the cosmic beginning.”

Alex Vilenkin, “Many Worlds In One - The Search for Other Universes,” 11

If you’re interesting in learning what this theorem actually says, you might find these resources interesting.

Borde, Guth, and Vilenkin, “Inflation Is Not Past-Eternal,”
http://arXiv:gr-qc/0110012v1 April 18, 2002):10

A. Borde and A. Vilenkin, “Eternal Inflation and the Initial Singularity,” Physical Review Letters 72 (1994); 3305,3307

Gorth Satana said...

Alan Guth has described the inflationary universe as the "ultimate free lunch", new universes, similar to our own, are continually produced in a vast inflating background.

Alex Vilenkin in his book Many Worlds in One, proposed the spacetime structure where the Universe can be finite as seen from “outside” but infinite when seen from inside – from our point of view.

Inflation Is Not Past-Eternal”

SmartLX said...

We are not supposing a cause in the sense that you seem to mean i.e., we start with that.

I did not even consider whether we start with the universe's immediate cause, if any. The point of much of my stuff was the qualities of this cause relative to the universe, and by extension its own cause's qualities relative to it.

All of our observations go to confirming the thesis that everything that begins to exits has a cause that is external to itself.

What observations? Name one thing that we have witnessed beginning to exist in the same way you believe the universe did, i.e. without using any previously existing matter or energy.

Wow! So you believe there can be an be an infinite regress of cause. Am I hearing you correctly that you also believe that matter can be eternal, AND that you believe that the material infinite does in fact exist? Is that what you’re saying?

Yes, except that I would substitute "think" for "believe" and adjust it to "the material infinite could exist". It's the simplest interpretation of the laws of conservation of matter and energy. Now where is the evidence that these things are impossible?

We've been through the stuff by Guth etc. already. They ruled out past-eternal models that do not involve a singularity. That's the "beginning" to which Vilenkin refers, and it may not actually be an absolute beginning.

So perhaps one can of paint threw the other can of paint?

An arm threw it. At that point, I was discussing a hypothetical Cause, not arguing against one. And you haven't touched my point, which is that the Cause need not be superior to the effect.

...the phrase, “past-incomplete implies the need for an initial singularity. That means that ANY model of an expanding universe cannot be past-eternal.

Incorrect. It simply means that any model of an expanding universe needs a singularity. If the singularity itself can be caused by a universe, for instance one collapsing into itself or ejecting matter outside of itself, then any model with a singularity can be past-eternal.

See www.phy.princeton.edu/~steinh/ under, “Answers to Frequently Asked Questions: Has the cyclic model been cycling forever.”

The very first line of the answer given for this question is, "It is possible that the universe has been cycling forever into the past and will cycle forever into the future without violating any known laws of physics." How is it possible that you missed that?

A singularity, according to the scientists you quote, is only guaranteed to be the beginning of the current form, phase or cycle of this universe. It was not necessarily the absolute beginning of all time, or of everything material. As long as you think you've won merely by arguing people to a singularity, you won't convince anyone.

As for your philosophical objections to the infinite, get on with them. VenomFangX introduced a large audience to arguments of this sort, and they did not hold up well.