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Author Topic: Why Did God Create Humanity?  (Read 1299 times) Average Rating: 0
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« on: February 03, 2013, 07:02:28 PM »

I know that this question has been way overdone, and is probably one of the deepest, most confusing theological questions, but I'm still going to ask it anyway. Why did God create us? I know to "become gods" and deification and all that stuff, but, here's a thought. What if we don't want deification? Our only other option is Orthodox Hell. What if we want neither? St. Paul compares this live to a race, and fighting the good fight and all that stuff, but I don't recall ever agreeing to this. I don't recall ever choosing to be born in the middle of a marathon, to have to be involved in a big spiritual battle with only two options. I don't see any freedom at all. What if we would just prefer to cease existing or have never been brought into existence? I'd much rather have never existed than have to live in toil to master my vices.
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« Reply #1 on: February 03, 2013, 07:05:33 PM »

we were created either out of God's Love or to worship Him...
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« Reply #2 on: February 03, 2013, 08:30:34 PM »

JamesR, this post is one of the best questions you have ever asked. It's thoughtful and honest.

You've got all the standard answers for why God created humanity. For me, my Orthodox faith has been all about "Why did God create me?" And I don't mean that in a self-centred way, but rather as a quest to know how I fit into the grand scheme of things, which I suppose ultimately will lead me as well to an answer to your question.
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« Reply #3 on: February 03, 2013, 11:18:15 PM »

He loved us before he even made us, so he had to create us, he created us by his love.
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« Reply #4 on: February 03, 2013, 11:28:11 PM »

God is creative; God is love; God is free; insofar as we can understand what those things means regarding God we can say them. So then, making man and the universe, out of nothing, was a manifestation of that creativity, love and freedom.
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« Reply #5 on: February 03, 2013, 11:46:23 PM »

God created humanity to perfectly express Himself. The Eternal and ever existant I AM created a finite I am to exegete Himself in a manner He saw fitting.  You owe your existance to God and you owe the fact that you'll never die to His Son. And I believe if you read Revelation you see that Orthodox hell is precisely, prefering to be dead instead of living.
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« Reply #6 on: February 03, 2013, 11:51:12 PM »

I know that this question has been way overdone, and is probably one of the deepest, most confusing theological questions, but I'm still going to ask it anyway. Why did God create us? I know to "become gods" and deification and all that stuff, but, here's a thought. What if we don't want deification?
Well, we were not created just for our sake, James.

We have a purpose toward creation. Our purpose is to take everything that everything else does and is to glorify God, and reflect him in diverse and wonderful ways, and re-capitulate it and offer it to God in thanksgiving and glorification. We are supposed to announce and bring forth the truth and the reality in all of the beasts we are to name.
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« Reply #7 on: February 04, 2013, 01:39:03 AM »

For his good pleasure.
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« Reply #8 on: February 04, 2013, 02:43:14 AM »

I know that this question has been way overdone, and is probably one of the deepest, most confusing theological questions, but I'm still going to ask it anyway. Why did God create us? I know to "become gods" and deification and all that stuff, but, here's a thought. What if we don't want deification? Our only other option is Orthodox Hell. What if we want neither? St. Paul compares this live to a race, and fighting the good fight and all that stuff, but I don't recall ever agreeing to this. I don't recall ever choosing to be born in the middle of a marathon, to have to be involved in a big spiritual battle with only two options. I don't see any freedom at all. What if we would just prefer to cease existing or have never been brought into existence? I'd much rather have never existed than have to live in toil to master my vices.

God created you in His image for dialogue with you, to speak to your heart and have you speak with Him from your heart. And for communion, with humanity and creation, to know and to love and care for them them in His light. To partake of his priesthood, to grant you His grace that you might manifest this in your Person.

But since you know all of this, already, I will speak personally: I struggle with the same question- not abstractly, or even in words but existentially and with groans, as it were... as it seems you do as well. Remember, James, that God didn't make sin and hell (and there is no such thing as Orthodox hell, only an Orthodox understanding of hell  police) and He didn't create us to vex and to tempt us. We are tempted of our own sins and the sins of others. These are conditions we accumulate through life in a fallen world and the only way to transcend them is through the Cross.

Call on Him, ask Him to help you love Him that you may better serve Him. Thank Him for everything, as hard as that seems. The pain you are undergoing means you are alive and struggling, which is better than spiritual death. Think of all the spiritually sick people in this world who do not even know or acknowledge that they are sick unto death, who are the cause of their own and others' continual suffering. Pray for them, do good for them and thank God that He has opened your eyes to see your own condition, and the destiny to which you are called.

Believe me, James, you are not the only one who is tempted every day of his life. I'd like to say it gets easier, and in certain ways it does, but it also gets harder. Believe me also when I say that it is easier to struggle in a continual ascent from sin to virtue, than it is to give up and have to begin anew. It is much less painful in the long run to just keep struggling from where you are now.

Those who have abandoned themselves to the will of the flesh and the devil have their crosses too, but they are not unto salvation, because they are borne with selfish despair and ingratitude and when their pleasure comes to an end, as all pleasures do, they have lost their 'god' and their raison d'etre and must either move on to a new mode of distraction and alienation or give up and forfeit the priceless gift of life. Do not become one of them.

Keep your chin up, soldier, and remember, you are not struggling alone.
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« Reply #9 on: February 19, 2013, 02:46:00 PM »

Because God(The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit) has infinite Love and Grace, He has nothing to gain, He created us because He is perfect, He wanted to share the experience of life and unity with finite beings, to express His love, like a parent having a child.


God(The Father, The Son, and The Holy Spirit) doesn't need worship as He has nothing to gain, I believe God requires us to worship Him for our own good and because not doing so is just evil(sin), how are you not going to worship The One who gave you life and everything you love(fun, sex, communication, beauty, happiness, joy, perfection, goodness, and love itself)? that is just pure evil. maybe the biggest sin of them all.
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« Reply #10 on: February 19, 2013, 02:47:53 PM »

I know that this question has been way overdone, and is probably one of the deepest, most confusing theological questions, but I'm still going to ask it anyway. Why did God create us? I know to "become gods" and deification and all that stuff, but, here's a thought. What if we don't want deification? Our only other option is Orthodox Hell. What if we want neither? St. Paul compares this live to a race, and fighting the good fight and all that stuff, but I don't recall ever agreeing to this. I don't recall ever choosing to be born in the middle of a marathon, to have to be involved in a big spiritual battle with only two options. I don't see any freedom at all. What if we would just prefer to cease existing or have never been brought into existence? I'd much rather have never existed than have to live in toil to master my vices.

God created you in His image for dialogue with you, to speak to your heart and have you speak with Him from your heart. And for communion, with humanity and creation, to know and to love and care for them them in His light. To partake of his priesthood, to grant you His grace that you might manifest this in your Person.

But since you know all of this, already, I will speak personally: I struggle with the same question- not abstractly, or even in words but existentially and with groans, as it were... as it seems you do as well. Remember, James, that God didn't make sin and hell (and there is no such thing as Orthodox hell, only an Orthodox understanding of hell  police) and He didn't create us to vex and to tempt us. We are tempted of our own sins and the sins of others. These are conditions we accumulate through life in a fallen world and the only way to transcend them is through the Cross.

Call on Him, ask Him to help you love Him that you may better serve Him. Thank Him for everything, as hard as that seems. The pain you are undergoing means you are alive and struggling, which is better than spiritual death. Think of all the spiritually sick people in this world who do not even know or acknowledge that they are sick unto death, who are the cause of their own and others' continual suffering. Pray for them, do good for them and thank God that He has opened your eyes to see your own condition, and the destiny to which you are called.

Believe me, James, you are not the only one who is tempted every day of his life. I'd like to say it gets easier, and in certain ways it does, but it also gets harder. Believe me also when I say that it is easier to struggle in a continual ascent from sin to virtue, than it is to give up and have to begin anew. It is much less painful in the long run to just keep struggling from where you are now.

Those who have abandoned themselves to the will of the flesh and the devil have their crosses too, but they are not unto salvation, because they are borne with selfish despair and ingratitude and when their pleasure comes to an end, as all pleasures do, they have lost their 'god' and their raison d'etre and must either move on to a new mode of distraction and alienation or give up and forfeit the priceless gift of life. Do not become one of them.

Keep your chin up, soldier, and remember, you are not struggling alone.

I agree, I hate how people say that God would create evil, only man did, as evil is a lack of good, God can't lack good therefore He cannot do evil. and man created Hell(death)
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« Reply #11 on: February 19, 2013, 02:49:53 PM »

we were created either out of God's Love or to worship Him...

We were not created to worship Him.  I think that is a rather egotistic way of looking at God.  Rather, because we are His creations we are inclined by our nature to worship Him.  I believe it is in the natural order of Love to multiply.  Just as husband and wife have kids and why One God is a Trinity (doesn't make sense for God to be Love and be just one person for all eternity).
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« Reply #12 on: February 19, 2013, 03:39:58 PM »

God can't lack good therefore He cannot do evil.

With God all things are possible.
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« Reply #13 on: February 19, 2013, 03:46:22 PM »

The pain you are undergoing means you are alive and struggling, which is better than spiritual death.

I'll ignore the other problematic parts of your post, I just want to point out that as I grow older, I grow more weary and suspicious of those who would fetishize pain and suffering.

Oh and that I am not sure what spiritual death could mean within a Christian context when taken in a strict manner, unless you believe that Annihilationism belongs within the realm of Orthodox belief.
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« Reply #14 on: February 19, 2013, 03:52:56 PM »

we were created either out of God's Love or to worship Him...

We were not created to worship Him.  I think that is a rather egotistic way of looking at God.  Rather, because we are His creations we are inclined by our nature to worship Him.  I believe it is in the natural order of Love to multiply.  Just as husband and wife have kids and why One God is a Trinity (doesn't make sense for God to be Love and be just one person for all eternity).

This isn't bad but you have make an account for the fact the obvious evidence is that the "natural order" is not one of love nor is love necessary for production much less reproduction.

And Adam and Eve stories don't suffice to answer this problem.

Frankly, I think you would do well to jettison completely notions of natural order. Nature has done nothing but cause problems within thinking forever, especially within the odd notion of reconciling something like "nature" with Christianity which seems to me to be radically at odds with some like a "natural order" or even something like "nature".

In a weird way, the Christian right in the USA who would attempt to destroy "nature" in order to speed up the Second Coming, I think has a misguided but a strange intuitive grasp that Christianity is antithetical to notions of "nature" or the "natural".

EDIT: Maybe I am especially peeved today as I have an ongoing problem with nature.
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« Reply #15 on: February 19, 2013, 03:55:05 PM »

The pain you are undergoing means you are alive and struggling, which is better than spiritual death.

I'll ignore the other problematic parts of your post, I just want to point out that as I grow older, I grow more weary and suspicious of those who would fetishize pain and suffering.


Who "fetishizes" pain and suffering?  Surely you don't mean someone like Archimandrite Aleksiev http://www.amazon.com/Suffering-Reconciliation-Spiritual-Writings-Archimandrite/dp/0938635867/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1361303682&sr=1-1 ?
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« Reply #16 on: February 19, 2013, 03:58:51 PM »

The pain you are undergoing means you are alive and struggling, which is better than spiritual death.

I'll ignore the other problematic parts of your post, I just want to point out that as I grow older, I grow more weary and suspicious of those who would fetishize pain and suffering.


Who "fetishizes" pain and suffering?  Surely you don't mean someone like Archimandrite Aleksiev http://www.amazon.com/Suffering-Reconciliation-Spiritual-Writings-Archimandrite/dp/0938635867/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1361303682&sr=1-1 ?


I haven't read this text, but yes, many Christians and Christian writers have fetishized pain. It is the go to manner of explaining it. This is a problem.
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« Reply #17 on: February 19, 2013, 04:08:47 PM »

Oh and that I am not sure what spiritual death could mean within a Christian context when taken in a strict manner, unless you believe that Annihilationism belongs within the realm of Orthodox belief.

Why take it in a strict or overly-literal manner?
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« Reply #18 on: February 19, 2013, 04:14:07 PM »

The pain you are undergoing means you are alive and struggling, which is better than spiritual death.

I'll ignore the other problematic parts of your post, I just want to point out that as I grow older, I grow more weary and suspicious of those who would fetishize pain and suffering.


Who "fetishizes" pain and suffering?  Surely you don't mean someone like Archimandrite Aleksiev http://www.amazon.com/Suffering-Reconciliation-Spiritual-Writings-Archimandrite/dp/0938635867/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1361303682&sr=1-1 ?


I haven't read this text, but yes, many Christians and Christian writers have fetishized pain. It is the go to manner of explaining it. This is a problem.

I'm reading that for probably the 3rd time.  I find it immensely helpful and immensely disturbing at the same time.  Check it out and see if you think he is "fetishizing".
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« Reply #19 on: February 19, 2013, 04:16:14 PM »

Oh and that I am not sure what spiritual death could mean within a Christian context when taken in a strict manner, unless you believe that Annihilationism belongs within the realm of Orthodox belief.

Why take it in a strict or overly-literal manner?

Cause there is no other way to take it or anything else for that matter?

If it is "a figure of speech" (even those are literal in meaning), then I am not sure under which figure it would reside, perhaps hyperbole? Even then, I am not sure if one can speak of spirit in this manner at all.

If the post I was replying to was appealing to the popular and cliched notion that pain is some curative for all things, then I am not sure why use all the words. Since so many words were used, I took it to mean the post was attempting to avoid the Hallmark.

Otherwise just misappropriate neech:

That which does not kill you makes you stronger.
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« Reply #20 on: February 19, 2013, 04:18:59 PM »

The pain you are undergoing means you are alive and struggling, which is better than spiritual death.

I'll ignore the other problematic parts of your post, I just want to point out that as I grow older, I grow more weary and suspicious of those who would fetishize pain and suffering.


Who "fetishizes" pain and suffering?  Surely you don't mean someone like Archimandrite Aleksiev http://www.amazon.com/Suffering-Reconciliation-Spiritual-Writings-Archimandrite/dp/0938635867/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1361303682&sr=1-1 ?


I haven't read this text, but yes, many Christians and Christian writers have fetishized pain. It is the go to manner of explaining it. This is a problem.

I'm reading that for probably the 3rd time.  I find it immensely helpful and immensely disturbing at the same time.  Check it out and see if you think he is "fetishizing".

I might. However, even if this author is not, it doesn't mean that Christianity (and its secular children) do not tend to so.

If pain ends up some necessary magical ingredient for finding meaning, then as I said, I remain a bit weary and suspicious.
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« Reply #21 on: February 19, 2013, 04:37:57 PM »

The pain you are undergoing means you are alive and struggling, which is better than spiritual death.

I'll ignore the other problematic parts of your post, I just want to point out that as I grow older, I grow more weary and suspicious of those who would fetishize pain and suffering.


Who "fetishizes" pain and suffering?  Surely you don't mean someone like Archimandrite Aleksiev http://www.amazon.com/Suffering-Reconciliation-Spiritual-Writings-Archimandrite/dp/0938635867/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1361303682&sr=1-1 ?


I haven't read this text, but yes, many Christians and Christian writers have fetishized pain. It is the go to manner of explaining it. This is a problem.

I'm reading that for probably the 3rd time.  I find it immensely helpful and immensely disturbing at the same time.  Check it out and see if you think he is "fetishizing".

I might. However, even if this author is not, it doesn't mean that Christianity (and its secular children) do not tend to so.

If pain ends up some necessary magical ingredient for finding meaning, then as I said, I remain a bit weary and suspicious.

I totally understand.  I, too, weary of pain and suffering, especially when it seems to be unceasing--rather un-like my prayer--and when it affects my beloved wife and other people I love (or myself, for that matter  Embarrassed).  However, I believe, and I don't have the references handy (sorry!), that there's ample Scriptural reference to the necessity (for lack of a better word at the moment) for suffering. 
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« Reply #22 on: February 19, 2013, 04:47:20 PM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.
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« Reply #23 on: February 19, 2013, 04:52:56 PM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.
« Last Edit: February 19, 2013, 04:54:33 PM by J Michael » Logged

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« Reply #24 on: February 19, 2013, 04:59:17 PM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

How closely has this board considered Genesis? I don't think Genesis is an adequate account for the way things are. Probably the only possible interest of it is how it departs from similar mythic literature of its time and prior to it and as a way of reading in Christological meanings later.

While one could the OT in its near entirety deals with the "problem of evil", I think Job is most instructive and goes against the entire notion that pain or suffering is the result of choices of man or are requirements for "deification".

The tack James seems to be taking here I don't think is going to end up being helpful either or at least not incredibly redundant.
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« Reply #25 on: February 19, 2013, 05:11:15 PM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

How closely has this board considered Genesis? I don't think Genesis is an adequate account for the way things are. Probably the only possible interest of it is how it departs from similar mythic literature of its time and prior to it and as a way of reading in Christological meanings later.

While one could the OT in its near entirety deals with the "problem of evil", I think Job is most instructive and goes against the entire notion that pain or suffering is the result of choices of man or are requirements for "deification".

The tack James seems to be taking here I don't think is going to end up being helpful either or at least not incredibly redundant.

I am eminently unqualified to discuss this in much detail, but, yes, Job is very instructive, especially when taken together with Genesis, the Gospels, and the teachings of people like Arch. Aleksiev, et. al.  Let me ask this: if Adam and Eve had *not* chosen to "sin"; if we chose repeatedly and constantly to *not* sin, would we still experience pain and suffering?  (I know, if, if, if, if, if...And yeah, the horse has already left the barn!)
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« Reply #26 on: February 19, 2013, 06:27:39 PM »

The pain you are undergoing means you are alive and struggling, which is better than spiritual death.

I'll ignore the other problematic parts of your post, I just want to point out that as I grow older, I grow more weary and suspicious of those who would fetishize pain and suffering.

Oh and that I am not sure what spiritual death could mean within a Christian context when taken in a strict manner, unless you believe that Annihilationism belongs within the realm of Orthodox belief.

I haven't the energy or desire to defend my (putative) motivations or any imprecision in my expression. I am only writing to request that for one's spiritual welfare, it is better to simply ignore what I have written here and elsewhere; It would have been better for me to have abstained from writing anything. I am utterly confounded.

Blessed Lent.
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« Reply #27 on: February 19, 2013, 06:45:41 PM »

Oh and that I am not sure what spiritual death could mean within a Christian context when taken in a strict manner, unless you believe that Annihilationism belongs within the realm of Orthodox belief.

Why take it in a strict or overly-literal manner?

Cause there is no other way to take it or anything else for that matter?

Then why did you use a qualifier like strict? Obviously you are incorrect here...
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« Reply #28 on: February 19, 2013, 06:59:57 PM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

No, God does; read Job.
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« Reply #29 on: February 19, 2013, 07:28:09 PM »

Oh and that I am not sure what spiritual death could mean within a Christian context when taken in a strict manner, unless you believe that Annihilationism belongs within the realm of Orthodox belief.

Why take it in a strict or overly-literal manner?

Cause there is no other way to take it or anything else for that matter?

Then why did you use a qualifier like strict? Obviously you are incorrect here...

No. It is called writing to those who read what you are writing.
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« Reply #30 on: February 19, 2013, 08:54:03 PM »

There is absolutely no answer for this question, other than what God knows.

So all I can do is offer something I've imagined.

I've imagined that since he knew us before he formed us in the womb, something went strange in the war in heaven.  The angels who rebelled went with lucifer.  The angels who stayed loyal went with God.   Now there was the middle ground of "I don't knows".

I wonder if our souls were the "I don't knows", granted free will to choose.  Are we with God, or with "Lucifer".

Either that or we were not created yet in Heaven, but after the war, he gave those he wanted to create free will.

I have absolutely no idea, but in the illogicalness of it all, it's the only logical reason I could come up with.... Some way, he wanted to know if we are with him or not.

So... There is my imagination, based on nothing.... Fun or not...  Smiley
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« Reply #31 on: February 20, 2013, 02:26:25 AM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

No, God does; read Job.
You know what's in bolded is a pretty important facet to J Michael's politics.

Just an acute observation.
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« Reply #32 on: February 20, 2013, 03:17:05 AM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

No, God does; read Job.

How does God make us suffer?? if God is making us suffer then he is not a loving God.
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« Reply #33 on: February 20, 2013, 03:41:48 AM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

No, God does; read Job.

How does God make us suffer?? if God is making us suffer then he is not a loving God.

Then the Book of Job clearly portrays an unloving God.
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« Reply #34 on: February 20, 2013, 04:39:27 AM »

From what I have come to understand, God created humanity to glorify Himself. When you think about it, whether we end up in Heaven or Hell, God will be glorified. Glorifying being different to worship however. Any thoughts?
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« Reply #35 on: February 20, 2013, 06:57:12 AM »

I really do tire of the word games. For example, it was said: "How closely has this board considered Genesis?" Should I have been snarky and said "Boards don't have minds, therefore they don't consider anything. People consider, not boards. People should not be so lazy with language, it devalues... blah blah blah" ? Poison.
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« Reply #36 on: February 20, 2013, 10:21:05 AM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

No, God does; read Job.
You know what's in bolded is a pretty important facet to J Michael's politics.

Just an acute irrelevant and not necessarily accurate observation.

Fixed it for you.

If you want to discuss my politics, which have nothing whatsoever to do with this thread and about which you probably know far less than you imagine you do, take it to the appropriate forum. 
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« Reply #37 on: February 20, 2013, 10:45:32 AM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

No, God does; read Job.

I do plan to go back and re-read Job (it's been awhile since I read it last).  But, please explain how God has brought about our pain and suffering.  I'm genuinely interested.  I'm fully aware that God allows many things to happen to us, but allowing something and bringing it about are two quite different things, I think.  Or maybe you mean something entirely different.
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« Reply #38 on: February 20, 2013, 10:56:19 AM »

I really do tire of the word games. For example, it was said: "How closely has this board considered Genesis?" Should I have been snarky and said "Boards don't have minds, therefore they don't consider anything. People consider, not boards. People should not be so lazy with language, it devalues... blah blah blah" ? Poison.

More of your metaphysical prejudices. This post wants to appeal to some reflective subjectivity which somehow takes precedence over other structural ways in which the world understands and is understood.

What else are there other than words games?

Didn't you say Descartes was silly or something?
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« Reply #39 on: February 20, 2013, 11:25:13 AM »

Why does God create animals?

Does God love animals? Why don't God make animals in His image, just like how He create men?
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« Reply #40 on: February 20, 2013, 11:54:10 AM »

Why does God create animals?

Does God love animals? Why don't God make animals in His image, just like how He create men?

Really?
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« Reply #41 on: February 20, 2013, 12:03:24 PM »

Why does God create animals?

Does God love animals? Why don't God make animals in His image, just like how He create men?

Really?

It is a legitimate question. I think walter tends to be one of the more sincere posters here and sounds like he has many questions and takes the feedback seriously and lacks much "real world" ability to have his questions addressed. (He doesn't seem just to ask questions just to do so.)

Walter, why do you think that something has to be in God's image for God to have love for it?
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« Reply #42 on: February 20, 2013, 12:26:19 PM »

Why does God create animals?

Does God love animals? Why don't God make animals in His image, just like how He create men?

Really?

It is a legitimate question. I think walter tends to be one of the more sincere posters here and sounds like he has many questions and takes the feedback seriously and lacks much "real world" ability to have his questions addressed. (He doesn't seem just to ask questions just to do so.)

Walter, why do you think that something has to be in God's image for God to have love for it?


Okay.  You could very well be right.  Probably just my pride and arrogance showing----yet again  Embarrassed.  

A useful starting place for Walter might be Gen.1:20-31, and Gen.2:19-20.
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« Reply #43 on: February 20, 2013, 04:48:27 PM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

No, God does; read Job.

I do plan to go back and re-read Job (it's been awhile since I read it last).  But, please explain how God has brought about our pain and suffering.  I'm genuinely interested.  I'm fully aware that God allows many things to happen to us, but allowing something and bringing it about are two quite different things, I think.  Or maybe you mean something entirely different.

Firstly, I would say that it is proper to speak of allowing something to happen as causing it.  That is, if you were to walk by a drowning child and not bother to help him, I would say that you brought about that child's death, even though you didn't push him into the water or keep him from getting out, because you failed to get him out.

But that isn't quite what I was going for.  In Job, it is always God that brings up "my servant Job."  For example, in chapter one, God asks the devil where he came from, and the devil says that he was wandering the earth.  And then it is God who brings up the question of Job, saying "Have you yet considered my servant Job, since there is none like him on the earth."  This happens over and over again, God keeps bringing up Job to the devil.

It is God who brings about Job's sorrow and affliction.  It is not Job.  It is not even the devil.  It is God.
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« Reply #44 on: February 20, 2013, 05:09:16 PM »

Saying that pain and suffering is needed for us to find "meaning" has always been the stupidest answer to me that I ever heard to this question. If God is all powerful then He wouldn't need to use pain and suffering--which is evil--in order to deify us. In fact, I find that view WAY too dualistic in that it gives evil too much power and influence.

He doesn't need to do so.  Unless I've misunderstood things (more than possible!), we have brought our pain and suffering on ourselves.  Read Genesis.  And the book I mentioned above.  Besides, it's not about "finding meaning"--it's about sin, overcoming sin and temptation, and salvation.  Slightly different, I think.

No, God does; read Job.

I do plan to go back and re-read Job (it's been awhile since I read it last).  But, please explain how God has brought about our pain and suffering.  I'm genuinely interested.  I'm fully aware that God allows many things to happen to us, but allowing something and bringing it about are two quite different things, I think.  Or maybe you mean something entirely different.

Firstly, I would say that it is proper to speak of allowing something to happen as causing it.  That is, if you were to walk by a drowning child and not bother to help him, I would say that you brought about that child's death, even though you didn't push him into the water or keep him from getting out, because you failed to get him out.

But that isn't quite what I was going for.  In Job, it is always God that brings up "my servant Job."  For example, in chapter one, God asks the devil where he came from, and the devil says that he was wandering the earth.  And then it is God who brings up the question of Job, saying "Have you yet considered my servant Job, since there is none like him on the earth."  This happens over and over again, God keeps bringing up Job to the devil.

It is God who brings about Job's sorrow and affliction.  It is not Job.  It is not even the devil.  It is God.

By your reasoning if I've understood you correctly, He also caused Adam and Eve to partake of the forbidden fruit thereby causing them to fall away from Him into sin.  This precludes free will and has God choosing for Adam, Eve, and all the rest of us.  God causes us to sin because He doesn't prevent us from doing so when we so choose?  This isn't the Christianity that I was taught. 

Like I said, I'll have to go back and re-read Job (when I have time), hopefully with a much greater and deeper understanding than when I did previously.  Many others have written about it, and I make no pretense about understanding it fully.  None at all.
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