A Call To An Intellectual Faith

By J. Brian Huffling

I would venture that if you asked people what is meant by ‘faith,’ they would likely say “believing something in spite of the evidence or in the absence of evidence.” However, such has not historically been the view of faith.

A Call To An Intellectual Faith

Faith has traditionally been understood as trusting a reliable source. For example, while it is possible to prove through historical means that Jesus died, it is not possible to prove through merely historical means that his death atoned for our sins. The former is demonstrable through reason, the latter by faith. This is not meant to say that faith is irrational. On the contrary, when a source is demonstrated to be reliable, we can trust that source even when we cannot prove something through empirical investigation. Jesus and his apostles have been verified to be reliable sources. Their message has been confirmed with miracles, and Jesus’ claims to deity were likewise confirmed via miracles. Given such reliability, we can trust, i.e., have faith in, what they say.

This is in stark contrast to the blind faith that so many in our culture accuse Christians of having. I have been asked on more than one occasion how I can be a philosopher and also a Christian. The answer is simple: Christianity is philosophically rational.

The Problem

However, sometimes Christians don’t help matters. Sometimes people assert that faith is all it takes to be a Christian. In a sense there is a ring of truth to this; however, that is probably misleading. We have to have faith in the right object. Discerning what object should warrant our faith and belief requires reason. Faith alone is not enough, for one can have (blind) faith in anything. To have faith in the traditional sense requires one to have reasons, and thus to have a reasoned faith.

It is sad that some Christians actually believe (blindly) that we should not base our faith on reason, for such supposedly subordinates God’s Word to human reason. However, understanding (let alone believing) the Bible requires one to rationally understand what it says. We cannot even know what the Bible says without using reason.

Some Causes of the Problem

With such notions in mind, our culture has ridiculed Christians for being irrational. Historically this is false, for many of the best minds have been Christians. But there is a very real sense of anti-intellectualism in the church nowadays. This is particularly noticeable to new seminary graduates who are eager to take various positions in church ministry or academia. I cannot begin to count the number of graduates that I know who have been disillusioned by the church’s disinterest in being intellectually fit.

Another problem is pastors. I wish I had a dollar for every time some pastor called for the congregation not to clutter their Christian faith with reason. Sometimes this call is subtle and sometimes it is overt. Many churches I have visited, even lately, have an anti-intellectual air about them, stemming from the person behind the pulpit. Such leads to disastrous consequences.

This can be seen in the gross ignorance of average Christians who don’t know hardly anything about their faith. I have had countless people talk to me about their Christian “faith” who do not even know whether or not they are Protestant, even though they have identified with Christianity for years. The average churchgoer cannot even articulate, let alone defend, such primary doctrines as the Trinity or the Incarnation. Many who have grown up for decades in the Church know next to nothing about the Bible, where certain books are, or have any idea whatsoever about how to interpret or study it. Most Christians cannot have an intelligent conversation about God’s nature regarding whether they think he is temporal, changeable, etc., or that these issues are even debated. Rather than have solid studies on the Bible or theology, most are more interested in 12 step programs, like how to better their lives. Several years ago I made a list of the top 10 books in Christian bookstores. There was maybe one book on theology, several on health and prosperity, and others on fiction. Why is this?

I think at least one problem is pastors. They are not the only problem, but they are our leaders of spirituality, and they definitely share at least some of the blame. (I realize this is a generalization, but I have seen and heard more pastors show off their ignorance as well as a desire for others to do the same than I would like.) In my experience and in talking to others, it appears that one reason that pastors want to downplay reason and intellectual faith is because it is difficult. It actually requires a lot of studying and learning. It is much easier to attack reason as an instrument of paganism or the devil than it is to devote one’s life to the intellectual pursuit. However, pastors have a responsibility to lead their flock in worship and devotion to Christ. A consequence of pastors downplaying reason is apathy and ignorance on the part of the parishioners. The Bible tells us explicitly (and many times implicitly) to worship God with our minds (Matt 22:37).

It is worth noting that when reason is downplayed false teaching is much more likely to abound. Both Mormons and teachers of the Word-Faith Movement downplay the use of reason. What is left is an attempt to judge what is true based on feelings.

Of course, pastors are not the only problem. Each person is responsible for his own mind and faith. It is also true that a church can have a marvelous pastor with uninterested followers. Church and Christianity have been so divorced from intellectualism in many circles lately that people either don’t care to learn or don’t know how. So what is the solution?

Part of the Solution

The anti-intellectualism issue has many causes and requires various solutions. One solution is for parishioners and pastors to realize there is a great need for pastors and church leaders to be educated. Some pastors realize the need, but either can’t afford to do anything about it or do not have the support of the church. We must support our pastors in this area. We should not settle for anything less. Most people would not get their hair done by someone who didn’t have a license and training to do it, so why wouldn’t we want the leaders of our churches who are supposed to lead our families and us in our faith to have an education?

In turn, churches should have programs in place to teach their parishioners the basics of the faith. The average Christian isn’t expected to be a theologian, but he ought to at least understand the basics of the faith. A good way to do this is to have studies on the churches doctrinal statement (if they have one!).

Another part of the solution is to be educated ourselves. This does not necessitate formal training, but it we should take an interest in what we claim to be the most important area of our lives: our faith. This means going to church and Bible studies (taught by trained teachers), reading books, and making it a point to learn what our faith is all about. (See my Recommended Booklist.)

Having a rational faith also allows us to apply it to every area of our lives, such as politics, ethics, and entertainment. This is how we love and worship God with our minds. The difference between humans and other animals is the human mind and the ability to reason. This is how God made us different and more like him. We should, in fact, seek to worship and know him through this important aspect of our nature.

 


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27 replies
  1. Barry says:

    If the Holy Spirit was telling this to the church before this article was posted, how could the article be needed?

    Are genuinely born again church goers sometimes deaf to the Holy Spirit?

    If so, why can’t God just exercise his magically coercive telepathy, such as what he did to Cyrus in Ezra 1:1, and presto, no authentically born again Christian needs to read internet blogs to find out what God wants them to do? In fact, the Ezra 1:1 fairy dust doesn’t just inform you of God’s will, it also makes you willing to do God’s bidding.

    Ain’t the bible far better than a blog post?

    Reply
    • Pat says:

      Because we are all different and learn in different ways. Some people are visual and learn better through pictures others are better with words and the abstract. I personally like both. While utilizing either one or both the holy spiri can present us with a light bulb moment or some people say an uh ha moment. Fairy dust not do much

      Reply
  2. jcb says:

    A call to an Intellectual faith article

    https://crossexamined.org/a-call-to-an-intellectual-faith/

    Many people think “faith” means “believing even when the evidence is lacking” (T)
    Historically, few people have used “faith” this way (F)
    Having evidence is “better” if one is trying to determine what is real/what exists (T)
    Theistic faith has traditionally involved trusting a reliable source rather than saying things like, “even though the science shows its still wine, it’s now the blood of Jesus” (F)
    Scientific evidence seems to make it probable that Jesus lived and died (T)
    Science can’t prove whether his death gave us eternal life (F)
    Science shows that most people will still not have eternal lives, despite Jesus (T)
    That Jesus’ death “atones” for our sins is “demonstrable through faith” (F)
    Claiming that Jesus’ death atones for our sins is not irrational (F)
    When a source (like the Bible) is demonstrated to be reliable (like when it says Jerusalem exists), we can trust that source even when we cannot prove something through empirical investigation (like when it says snakes talked). (F)
    Jesus and his apostles have been verified to be reliable sources in all things (F)
    Jesus is “reliable” when he asserts that a city like Jerusalem exists (T)
    If Jesus is reliable about some things, he is reliable about other things (F).
    That Jesus is God is confirmed because he turned 10 fish into 1000 (for example) (F)
    Jesus did turn 10 fish into 1000 (F)
    If he did, that would show that he was probably an all perfect god (F)
    Jesus’ reliability is not lowered when he claims to have turned 10 fish into 1000 (F)
    Believing that Jesus actually did turn 10 fish into 1000 isn’t blind faith, but probable trust (F)
    Christianity is philosophically rational (F)
    Philosophy and science prove that God probably exists (F)
    Sometimes people assert that faith is all it takes to be a Christian. (T)
    Discerning what object should warrant our faith/belief requires reason. (T)
    Faith alone is not enough, for one can have (blind) faith in anything. (T)
    Most Christians have a reasoned faith (F)
    It is sad that some Christians actually believe (blindly) (T)
    Some have pointed out that many theists believe blindly and irrationally (T)
    Historically, few theists have done this (F)
    Many great thinkers have been Christians (T)
    This shows that their Christian thinking is also great (F)
    “there is a very real sense of anti-intellectualism in the church nowadays.” (T)
    This is new (F)
    Many pastors call for faith without reason/evidence (T)
    Anti-intellectualism is “disastrous” (T)
    (many) “Average Christians” have “gross ignorance’ about “their faith” (T)
    “The average churchgoer cannot…defend” typical theists doctrines (T)
    “Many who have grown up for decades in the Church know next to nothing about the Bible” (T)
    Defending theism is difficult (T)
    But God can be proven to exist (F)
    Many theists give up on reasoning because it is hard (T)
    There are also lazy atheists (T)
    “when reason is downplayed false teaching is much more likely to abound.” (T)
    This applies to much of theism (T)
    Those who care about the truth should fight against this anti intellectualism (T)
    Truth seekers should get educated! (T)
    One difference between humans and animals is that we reason better about many things (T)
    “This is how God made us different and more like him.” (F)
    Some animals are smarter than some humans (T)
    If we become educated, we will be able to prove that God exists (F)

    Reply
  3. Susan says:

    The problem with intellectualism in the Church is that it marginalizes Christian free thinking.

    God is not making Christians templates of each other.

    God is making a new original creation out of His people.

    So meditate on God’s Word so He can do a new an exciting work in you.

    The mediocrity of intellectual conformity is not what God purposes for people.

    God gave you a mind so use it the best you can. Think out of the box. Draw outside the lines and see what He does in you.

    Transformation not conformation to Human standards.

    When you cease to care what everyone thinks then you can start to really think.

    Do you want to grow a spiritual mind along people’s pattern or God’s?

    Let God get more personal with you and heed people less. He is the infallible One who’s love never fails.

    Reply
    • jcb says:

      (Switching sides, for fun!)
      Susan is right about everything! Such as:
      Using reason is dumb! It often shows theistic claims to be false. That’s the problem!
      God has an exciting plan for you! (Maybe you will be the Ambassador to Heaven!)
      Using reason is “mediocre”, “boring”, etc. Just invent fun things about “God”!
      Use your mind, but ignore all the reasons and evidence the atheists offer you!
      Think way way outside the box! Say that up is down!
      Don’t use human standards! Use imaginary alien standards!
      Ignore everyone else (especially those offering evidence). That’s when your thinking really gets sharp!
      Let God give you a spiritual massage. He let the Holocaust happen. How can that not be perfect love?

      Reply
  4. Susan says:

    I never said reason was dumb.

    I said don’t be afraid to use your own God given mind.

    Atheists lack faith in their own mind’s judging capability so they replace it with science and second hand thinking learned and parroted from others.

    I couldn’t stay in the manmade box. There is too much inspiration from God to limit me to mere human reason. Reason is useful but a tool not an idol.

    Ciao!

    Reply
    • jcb says:

      Fine, back to seriousness!
      You said,
      “The problem with intellectualism in the Church is that it marginalizes Christian free thinking.”
      So (it seems) either:
      1. it looks like you are saying something like “reason (Intellectualism) is dumb”, or you are saying
      2. Reason is not dumb, and it shows much Christian thinking to be false.

      Yes, you said use your mind, but if you did, you wouldn’t ignore (as you regularly do) all the reasonable points atheists have made here.

      So really it seems that you have said, “Use what I take to be God’s ideas but haven’t proven. and don’t try to actually use your own mind”.

      “Atheists lack faith in their own mind’s judging capability”. Mostly false. I am using my mind to make judgments based on the evidence I have, and think those judgments are often pretty accurate. Knowing that I could be wrong, I regularly ask theists if they have other evidence that I’m unaware of. Usually, they do not.

      But yes! Many smart atheists use science to best determine reality, what is likely to happen tomorrow, etc. The evidence shows science to be the best predictor of the future, what medicines will heal you, etc.

      Reason IS a tool: and it shows there probably is no God. You can then do what you (claim to) do: stop reasoning. Or you can accept that conclusion. Or of course, you can continue the discussion by trying to show that the current reasoning (of someone) is faulty. (You rarely do this).

      Reply
      • Susan says:

        Christians have eyewitness evidence and the mental capability to accept or decline that eyewitness as true or not.

        You decided against that evidence so no need to argue it further.

        Whether you like it or not in every encounter a person has a mind in which he evaluates if a person’s statements are true or not.

        Your lack of belief in your own ability to detect truth in eyewitness statements in no way invalidates my ability to detect it.

        I no longer enjoy discussing religion with atheists.

        So I usually am commenting on the article for theists.

        What is the point of arguing with someone quantifiably different from one’s self who refuses deliberately to grasp the difference?

        That is wasting the time not redeeming it.

        I have s big gift of helps so I offer it where it is effective.

        Many atheists don’t want to be helped to understand God’s perspective.

        So why force you to see?

        You go your own way and rebel against God if you must but stop commenting on my posts with false inferences.

        Many people were just not raised right in this world. They could have went to God and had that corrected but they didn’t.

        So stop letting these people swamp you with the personal issues they refuse to deal with.

        Atheism is a big personal issue that atheists repackage and want to ignore in favor of self love and intellectualism.

        So if an atheist does not have the ability to accept God and the self motivation to let Him improve them why waste time on their arguments? Theists are on a different road moving in a new direction and can meet the receptive moving along it.

        Nothing to be gained by the theist by wasting time on meaningless unspiritual ideas.

        There are spiritual and unspiritual people and I don’t argue with the unspiritual any more because they lack the experiential knowledge to know the difference.

        Take care. God bless!

        Reply
        • jcb says:

          Susan 20

          2000 year old documents exist. They do not make God probable. The “eyewitness” accounts of 2000 years ago about things like virgin births are highly improbable. Yes, you can choose to believe (have “faith”) anyway, which is what many theists do. Having such faith doesn’t make it probable that God exists, that prayer will make a person’s arm grow back, or make it probable that the Holocaust was what a perfect being would allow.

          I decided for the totality of evidence, not against. You have chosen to only consider 2000 year old evidence while ignoring all the other (scientific) evidence showing many of those 2000 year old claims to be false.

          Yes, I’m aware others have minds. I’m fine with that. Nothing about that shows that the theists’ “evaluations” here are accurate.

          I believe I can detect truth in these matters. I’m wondering if anyone can show that I’m in error. So far, that mostly hasn’t happened.

          Yes, my belief doesn’t invalidite your belief. But the evidence does.

          “I no longer enjoy discussing religion with atheists.” Yes, when a person is unable to defend their beliefs with evidence, it would probably be un-enjoyable to try to do so anyway.

          If you are commenting to theists, it would make more sense to not reply to the atheists. If you reply to the atheists, they are likely to reply to you.

          The point of arguing with others is that you (or they) might learn something.

          When one is not doing well defending a position, they often say, “This is a waste of my time”.

          It would NOT be a waste of your time to provide evidence, if you had it. Many atheists here would accept it.

          “Many atheists don’t want to be helped to understand God’s perspective.” There may be some atheists who aren’t open-minded. But there are plenty who are. Regardless, you still haven’t proven that God exists.

          Offering evidence isn’t “forcing” others to see.

          Asking if theists have evidence isn’t “rebelling” against God.

          Oh! It does seem that you did post without replying to my post. So perhaps I did wrongly assume that you were okay with someone (an atheist) commenting on your post. But you then did reply to my post, and my ideas, so you then invited conversation about that.

          I have not posted any “false inferences”. Feel free to prove otherwise.

          “Many people were just not raised right in this world.” Yes, and many of them are theists.

          “They could have went to God and had that corrected but they didn’t.” False. You can’t “go to” a fictional character.

          “Atheism is a big personal issue that atheists repackage and want to ignore in favor of self love and intellectualism.” False. Atheism is a claim about reality that seems to be accurate.

          You have a reason to discuss your ideas with atheists since many of them would listen to you if you indeed had evidence that made your claims probable.

          “Theists are on a different road moving in a new direction”. That’s true! It’s a road not supported by the evidence, though.

          Take care, and good luck with your evidence gathering!

          Reply
  5. Susan says:

    And here is your evidence JCB. Outside of mankind’s evil tampering.

    Evidence can be tampered with but true faith cannot be.

    Read all 6 parts and see what God has done and stop trying to erase God. He is far above man’s level.

    You are really imprudent enough to challenge God’s control over life and death?

    Then you are not reasoning judiciously.

    Read the 6 parts,. Christians have all kinds of evidence still faith is better. Hope this helps!

    God Prophetically Named The Stars
    https://gods-kingdom-ministries.net/daily-weblogs/blog-archive/teaching-series/medium-series/god-prophetically-named-the-stars/

    Reply
    • jcb says:

      Evidence can be tampered with, yes! That’s probably what happened to many of those Bible passages that claim there were talking snakes, etc.!
      I’m not erasing God. I’m showing that God probably doesn’t exist. Perhaps you mean, “Stop doing that!” Well, I’m seeking the truth, so I won’t stop doing that. Apparently you are saying that you aren’t seeking the truth, and thus are asking me to stop seeking the truth.
      God doesn’t control life and death, so I can’t “challenge” that.
      “Then you are not reasoning judiciously.” Nothing you’ve offered shows this to be true.
      You just said, sadly, that “faith” is “better than evidence”. There’s the heart of the problem.
      If that were true, then if (crazily) said, “my faith, and not any evidence, shows that Susan is a 5 headed Demon!”, according to your logic, that would be true (and better!)

      Reply
      • Susan says:

        You should give up. If you haven’t figured out that a state of belief is a different state of existence from someone living in non-belief you really are confused by appearances just like God says people are.

        If I were you I would give up arguing all together and seek to obey God until He leads you into a more profound state than you currently exist in.

        And be careful of all the unbelievers with all their submerged “issues” that they want to use to founder your ability to believe.

        Have a great life. Trust God more. Doubt people.

        Reply
        • jcb says:

          If you mean, you won’t listen to reason, then yes, perhaps I should give up trying to reason with you. There are of course other people here on this site, and maybe they will listen to reason, so I won’t be giving up entirely. Yes, I will work on avoiding your non-reasoned posts, and you can work on avoiding my reasonable posts, in the future.
          Yes, a state of belief is not identical to a state of existence. Nothing about that truth falsifies anything I’ve said before, or proves God, etc.
          If I were you I’d start using reason and evidence, assuming you care about the truth/reality, etc.
          Since God doesn’t exist, and you refuse to try to show that he does, there is no point in my obeying a fictional character.
          Yes, I hope you find happiness in life, but trusting in God will be a horrible mixed bag of “loving your neighbor” and also “discriminating against gays”, or “not taking medicine that will cure you, etc.”.
          Yes, doubt many things, but in the end, follow the evidence, if you are seeking truth.
          (And then it will lead you to Atheism!)
          (If you respond, I will also respond).

          Reply
          • Susan says:

            Lol. You are messing around with other people’s self identity determination so how is that reasonable? Trying to change believers into unbelievers.

            What next are you going to start trying to talk women into being men based on your reasoning?

            Reason is a catchall word loaded with stereotypes and assumptions.

            I have a mind and reason and resent the implications that because I refuse to think identically to others and do not fear their opinions that I don’t reason.

            Beware the catchall stereotypes of reason. Stereotyping is when you stop thinking and observing independently in favor of perjorative cliches and half baked assumptions.

            There are multiple brain types and types of intelligence. Do they all reason identically? Of course not.

            But at least I can be an original just as the good Lord designed me to be.

            An original is worth more than a copy.

          • jcb says:

            Susan,
            Having a conversation with others is hardly “messing around with other people’s self identity determination.” Having a conversation is quite reasonable for those that like to learn, and offer evidence concerning what is true/what is real/what exists.
            It is only unreasonable for me to do that if the theists here don’t care about the truth. If that’s the case, I encourage such anti-realism theists to pass over my comments.
            But for those who care about reality, trying to change others, and seeing if they can change me, with Evidence!, is quite reasonable.
            That I would help others who seek good answers find them doesn’t at all entail that I would try to talk women into being men. That makes no sense, (and suggests an odd view you have of men and women!)
            Yes, words have many different meanings at times, including “reason”. Nothing about that alone is relevant to our conversation.
            I figured you had a mind. I just wish you would use it (which you are) in evaluating the known evidence (which you don’t seem to do much).
            I don’t care if you think identically to others. I do care whether you have good evidence for your claims, because if you do, I want to know it!
            I think you are using some “reason”, but it looks like you aren’t using it that well.
            Yes! I’m trying to avoid stereotypes by moving beyond them, and seeing what evidence you have for your claims! I’m not just saying, “theist? Wrong!”
            Yes, your brain might work differently than mine, perhaps better. But that hasn’t been shown to be the case here about theism.
            If you are a theist of blind faith, that’s not original.

          • Bob says:

            Jason – If you mean, you won’t listen to reason, then yes, perhaps I should give up trying to reason with you.
            Jason, for your own sanity, give up. Absolutely nothing you say to her will ever break thru…trust me, I know from personal experience going back months.

  6. jcb says:

    Songs don’t replace evidence when discussing what is true/what exists.
    Many songs are more “beautiful” than facts.
    Many fictional stories are more pleasing than reality.
    Nothing here (as usual) shows that God exists/theism is true/atheism is false.

    Reply
        • Susan says:

          JCB you are greatly mistaken to think your intellect makes you fit to debate a Christian on religion.

          Many Christians have had experiences that they would consider supernatural. I have had a few myself but I no longer share them where people determined to disbelieve God can slyly reclassify my experiences as if they have the authority and knowledge to do that when they weren’t even there.

          Christians are called to love and respect people but that does not make an outsider lacking the subjective experience of a Christian equal in spiritual knowledge to a Christian.
          I love and respect kids but that does not mean they have the life experience of an adult to be considered an equal authority on a topic.

          That is where you are JCB treading with your intellectualism loud into the darkness of other people’s experiences.

          Why not be honest and just admit you have not experienced what they have.

          Wasn’t it O’Leary who said without experiencing LSD he could not know about it to venture an opinion.

          You should stop arguing with people who have more experience of God than you if you won’t seek an experience of Him yourself.

          You are an inexperienced, unqualified person rendering verdicts on things you have never experienced. How are you an authority with no experiential experiences of God at all but only a vociferous opinion?

          You should learn to quit arguing.

          How do your assumptions override a theist’s experience?

          The assumption is conjecture.

          The experience IS evidence.

          If you keep trying to control other people’s true life experiences to please your own opinions then you will never get the experience or the evidence.

          Reply
          • jcb says:

            Susan,
            I never claimed I was fit to debate a Christian on religion. Of course, I’m free to debate, and whether I’m right or wrong about my claims depends on the evidence, not whether I’m a “Christian”. One isn’t right, or smart, just because they are a Christian. So your comment is irrelevant to anything here. What we should be discussing is whether or not the claims are true. What you have done, as usual, is avoid all that, and simply (and wrongly) suggest that my not being a Christian makes me wrong or unfit to discuss matters of truth here.
            Unfortunately, you have shown that you are “unfit” to debate here. By that I mean, you have said that you have no interest in debating, and have shown no strong ability to debate, offer evidence, etc.
            So when I do debate, and offer evidence, your main rebuttal/reply is “you can’t debate! You aren’t fit/able to do so!” That’s false. To show it to be true, you would need to offer evidence. You haven’t done that.

            “Many Christians have had experiences that they would consider supernatural.” Yes!
            That consideration doesn’t make them actually supernatural/connected to a god, etc.

            Please, don’t share your views with “people determined to disbelieve God.” I’m not one of those people. I’m determined to discuss and listen to the evidence.

            I’m trying to evaluate your experiences (and those of Hindus, Mormons, etc.). I do have the “authority” (freedom?) to discuss such matters, and to investigate whether such claims are indeed supported by the evidence. Usually, in these theistic matters, the answer seems to be in the negative.
            Some Christians are kind, some not!
            That many Christians value love/kindness doesn’t thereby make them right that God exists and make atheists wrong that God does not.
            You claim that Christians have more spiritual knowledge (than atheists/non-Christians). There seems to be no evidence of this.
            That adults often have more knowledge about many things than kids does nothing to show that you have more knowledge than I do in this situation.
            “Why not be honest and just admit you have not experienced what they have.” I never claimed otherwise. By definition I haven’t experienced what others have. But here we are discussing whether the experiences one claims to have are actually true! Many people claim to have experiences that they didn’t actually have (meeting Zeus, etc.)
            “You should stop arguing with people who have more experience of God than you”. False! It hasn’t been shown that anyone has more experience of (with?) God than I do. It looks like we all have the same amount of experience with God: none.
            But if one thinks they have more “experience of God” those are the people I should be seeking out discussions with: so they can offer me their evidence, so that I too could have a good reason to belief. Alas, that hasn’t happened here.
            “You are an inexperienced, unqualified person rendering verdicts on things you have never experienced.”. False. You don’t know my experiences, or my qualifications. I’m rendering verdicts on the evidence I have, and the lack of evidence theists here offer. That’s reasonable. If I’m mistaken, the way to show that is by you offering evidence. I know! You hate that! (or at least refuse to do that).
            Yes! I have no experiences “with” (talking to, etc.) God. That makes it seem like there is no God! I could be wrong. And so could you! So there’s a disagreement! And to resolve it, I’m seeking out theists who claim to have evidence showing their are right. Until then, it is reasonable for me to say there is no such being. And when I ask theists like you, it looks like you have no evidence, and thus it looks like you are unreasonable in claiming there is such a being.
            “You should learn to quit arguing.” No, you should learn how to argue and how to offer evidence.
            “How do your assumptions override a theist’s experience?” What assumptions? I never said that my assumptions do that. I said the evidence doesn’t prove theism.
            The evidence you offer is the experience of something which is CLAIMED, but not SHOWN, to be from/with God. I’m not disputing that theists believe to be talking with God. I’m disputing whether they actually are. You’ve offered no evidence that they actually are.

    • Susan says:

      Christians shouldn’t care about atheist evidence demands.

      You have not proved your heart is capable of assessing God’s evidence as you show signs of confirmation bias against Him.

      So check your own evil heart out before you precede to cast burdens of evidence on others that God
      never said they should bear.

      Too bad you are too busy prizing your own intellect to check yourself for evil like God tells us to do.

      If your heart scales are tuned to evil then how can you evaluate evidence accurately?

      Try asking God for some humility so you can take stock of your own evil heart enough to be able to repent THEN examine the evidence.

      Right now the scales of your heart appear to be blocked by evil so you couldn’t assess evidence if you wanted to.

      Reply
      • Mark Heavlin says:

        “Too bad you are too busy prizing your own intellect to check yourself for evil like God tells us to do.”
        .
        Jeffery Craig Bradley has no intellect for he has said ” there is no God” and therefore Psalm 14:1 applies directly to him.
        .
        Psalm 14:1 For the choirmaster. Of David. The fool says in his heart, “There is no God.” They are corrupt; their acts are vile. There is no one who does good.

        Reply

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