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Okay, so I'm a streamer on Twitch, but when I'm not streaming, I usually mod other people's channel and there is this one guy who croons about his religion and it insults my religion in the process and I time him out. He then goes to say I'm persecuting him.

 

The question is, am I in the wrong for doing that?

Not in the least. He's not being legally prosecuted (or persecuted) for his beliefs, he's spouting off on someone else's channel, who I believe have the right to discourage certain behaviors.

 

I swear, if I had a penny for every time someone misunderstood the concepts of free speech and freedom of religion...

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I don't really have a religion, I mean I do celebrate Christmas, thanksgiving and Easter but I like to celebrate them to spend time with family, not to warship and give what time I have in my life for something that may or may not be there. I won't bash on what others believe in and I hate it when others try to get me to believe in, like making me go to church and pray will make me a good person, and if I will be burning in hell after I die, I mean if God is so forgiving that would me no one would go to hell, so even the people who do terrible deeds should go to heaven with that logic, believe in anything I like to think that we are reincarnated or something, when I die I don't just wanna stop existing I like living. I don't want to think about the afterlife until it comes, you only have a while on this earth before you're gone. I also think that sins are just kinda silly, like lust, lpride, wrath, sloth, gluttony, greed and envy, and I'm not quite sure where murder falls on the sinning but that is really the only one I truly find terrible. They're all just flaws we have, they may not be great and for some they DO go overboard but for people who don't should you really be ashamed of it. I think one thing that got me thinking about that was watching Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood. Mainly when Greed wanted everything, including friends. As to whether or not I believe in a god I don't really know, but my acts of kindness are not motivated by one. No one is right and no one is wrong whichever way you look at it.

Edited by Featherheart

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To all who celebrated a religious holiday, I hope it was fulfilling.

 

Happy New Year to all, and I hope your spirit is filled with joy in 2017.

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My Christmas was really ded, speaking of religion. But then again, I don't really celebrate any holidays anyway. Most days are what you make of them, beyond whatever holiday status society may have attached to them.

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strict atheist over here, i'd list so many contradictions and stupid stuff in the bible but this isn't the place for it.

 

i hate the argument that atheists can't celebrate holidays like easter and christmas because they aren't christian, because hello, holidays like christmas aren't necessarily christian as much as they are pagan.

 

and when i mention to people that i'm an atheist but take an interest in things like angels and demons, i usually get a lot of weird looks because apparently people can't tell the difference in believing in something and taking an interest in it. to me, they aren't real, but hey they're an interesting topic and i like to mess with them both in my art and my writing.

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I'm Lutheran. I was baptised as a baby, read my night prayers and food blessings as a kid, went to sunday school, did my comfirmation at the age 14 and now I go to church every christmas with my family. Now days religion shows itself in my life only as an abitrary religious holiday that is usually a day off from school or work.

 

I do not believe in God (Christian, Judish, Islamic or any other "higher power" god). And I don't believe in Karma or reincarnation ot rebirth of the soul. I'd like to think there is something out there but my mind is way too scientific.. I believe in Big Bang Theory but what I wonder is if in the beginning there was nothing how 2 particles with tremendeous speed collided? Coincidence? Destiny? Reminds of me a saying "coincidence takes over when destiny is too busy".

 

I do feel kind of jealous to people with strong faith. They have something to protect them from mishaps. And I can talk about religion and faith with people, I don't mind even if people come talk to me about their beliefs. I have studied the Bible with Jehova's withnesses, I have talked about the Koran and it's meaning with an imam. Both of these books contain a set of rules to harmonious living. Too bad the kettle is blaiming the pot of being black.

 

Fundamentalism in any religion is bad. In any religion when religion becomes a main reason for living and a characteristic for people it's bad. When you describe people, you usually don't say they look like a christian, do you? So you shouldn't either have assumptions that a person with a beard and a olive coloured skin is a muslim. Descriping people to have a religion is just wrong as it shouldn't matter to other people what religion you take part in.

 

I've thought of resigning from the church.. but being part of that institute has had no bad effect on my life, so why resign? biggrin.gif And with luck, I could be godmother to my nieces and nephews and I could have a church wedding.. And be buried in my family tomb. Good enough reasons for me to be part of the church even though I do not believe in God.

Edited by sroo

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strict atheist over here, i'd list so many contradictions and stupid stuff in the bible but this isn't the place for it.

 

i hate the argument that atheists can't celebrate holidays like easter and christmas because they aren't christian, because hello, holidays like christmas aren't necessarily christian as much as they are pagan.

 

and when i mention to people that i'm an atheist but take an interest in things like angels and demons, i usually get a lot of weird looks because apparently people can't tell the difference in believing in something and taking an interest in it. to me, they aren't real, but hey they're an interesting topic and i like to mess with them both in my art and my writing.

The way I see it is, due to the way all those holidays have become commercialized (not to start an argument about that, it's a pretty straightforward fact that they have been) I think it's perfectly reasonable that people who don't believe in Christ enjoy them too. I was raised by an atheist father and an agnostic mother in the Unitarian Universalist faith, I believe in reincarnation and karma myself, and we celebrated Christmas every year.

 

I was brought up to see it as a celebration of family rather than a religious holiday (though we did go to church every year as well). I see no reason why people can't see it that way, if they don't believe in Christ or God or anything religious, and the people who do can put more emphasis on that side of things.

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strict atheist over here, i'd list so many contradictions and stupid stuff in the bible but this isn't the place for it.

 

i hate the argument that atheists can't celebrate holidays like easter and christmas because they aren't christian, because hello, holidays like christmas aren't necessarily christian as much as they are pagan.

 

and when i mention to people that i'm an atheist but take an interest in things like angels and demons, i usually get a lot of weird looks because apparently people can't tell the difference in believing in something and taking an interest in it. to me, they aren't real, but hey they're an interesting topic and i like to mess with them both in my art and my writing.

LOL, I get that all the time.

 

Yeah, I'm an atheist, and yeah, I celebrate Christmas and Easter. I was, after all, raised in a Roman Catholic family. These holidays are part of my culture and tradition. Really, the only thing different about them now vs when I believed in god is I don't go to church on these holidays. That's it. Nothing else is different.

 

And it just... baffles people. Is the concept of keeping these things in your life simply because they're part of your culture too hard for you to grasp?

 

It also baffles people when I say I like the majority of religious Christmas songs better than the secular ones (they sound prettier). xd.png

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I'm not really sure what I am. The term atheist has so many negative (and untrue) connotations but I'm not dedicated enough to believing in a higher being. I guess I'm just a firm believer of science.

 

I also celebrate Christmas and Easter. I have ever since I was a baby, even though the last time I went to a church was over 10 years ago (long story short, they didn't like my quiet disabled brother much and kicked us out). However, I have nothing against the people who do go to church and sing hymns and pray and whatnot. Good for them. Just don't be "that guy" and scold the rest of us for practicing our own traditions smile.gif

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Similar to a few of you, I was raised Catholic but discovered it wasn't really right for me. I went to Catholic school from kindergarten to senior year of high school, so the basic teachings are pretty much stamped into me. I still celebrate Easter and Christmas with my family; my family still are Catholic so I go along with their traditions to make them happy, but I really just think of the holidays as celebrating family, friends, and what I'm thankful for.

 

I guess I would classify myself as mostly atheist, sometimes pantheist. I've always felt a really strong spiritual affinity to nature, but I haven't quite looked into pantheism enough to identify as a pantheist. The main reason I turned away from Catholicism is because it is centered around an anthropomorphic god. This, to me, doesn't feel quite right - as a student studying biology and devoting my life to wildlife conservation, it doesn't make sense to me that we (humans) would be the center of all existence. With the millions of species in this world, I just can't see it. I am glad that Catholicism instilled in me a heavy bit of guilt, though - do not lie, steal, cheat, Jesus' teachings to accept everyone (though the Catholic church forgets this one sometimes). So I guess I'm glad I was raised with a set of basic guidelines in life.

 

But that's just me. I respect anyone else's views. You do you. ^.^

Edited by coo_

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Sorry for bumping up such an old thread, but I've been thinking about something lately and I know a lot of users around here are people who's opinions I respect, so.... If anyone would like to weigh in on this? 

 

Do you think it's strange that I tithe consistently despite not being ready to commit to the church, and not really knowing yet what exactly I believe or how much of what they preach I actually believe? It's just been on my mind a bit because a few weeks ago a friend expressed surprise when I mentioned tithing, because she knows I'm still trying to figure things out for myself and I'm not really sure where I stand when it comes to God and the Bible and such.

 

This is what I've been thinking: I don't have much money, I'm very much below poverty level, but I really like to give to good causes when I'm able to. I've given many times to the local Humane Society, and to No Kid Hungry, for example. I kind of see this the same way. I've attended enough services at this church to feel that they are a good church, to feel that they are preaching in a way that is welcoming and non-discriminatory and makes people really listen and think. I've interacted with enough of the people there to know that there are many, many people who have benefited from this church in some way. And I know this church doesn't simply preach God's word, they are very active in our community, they hold fundraisers for the more in-need schools and donate food and supplies to children, they have a big van they take around town to hand out supplies to the homeless, etc. So, the way I see it, it doesn't really matter what I personally believe regarding God and all that. This church does good, and I want to help with that if I can. 

 

But.... Is it strange that I do that when I'm still so questioning about my own beliefs?

 

(Bit more explanation, I've been very reluctant with religious matters in the past due to many churches insisting I'm going to hell for being gay (I once had a preacher lecture me about it for a whole hour). I know I believe in some sort of higher power, but beyond that I'm not really sure. I'm very hesitant about doing anything to 'commit' to this church, like baptism or whatever, until I figure out more. I've only been attending this church for about 6 months, and not every single week, and it's the first church I've *ever* attended with any sort of regularity.)

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@HeatherMarie

(I didn't know the word "tithe", and leo.org translates it as something I think was a medieval church tax, but I guess it means donating money to the church?)

I don't think it is strange, especially if you are sure the money is really used for objectively good purposes. I consider myself an atheist (more or less - if there is something like a God, I don't think it has anything to do with the Bible or other books), but I support faith-based charities sometimes when I'm convinced they do something good.

I think as long as someone does good things, in most situations it doesn't matter why they're doing it.

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@Confused Cat- that is pretty much what it DOES mean, these days!

I don't think it is ODD, at all, @HeatherMarie


I think there are people want to give to others and such that wouldn't necessarily claim any religious belief at all. Not everyone who is part of a church gives as they should ( THOUGH I would point out that we are ENCOURAGED to give), either. So... the two aren't NECESSARILY the same? All of that is me speaking as a Christian, here, for whatever that is worth.

 

Therefor not so weird if you are still questioning and figuring things out. :)

Edited by JavaTigress

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@HeatherMarie, that doesn't sound strange to me at all. I think a part of why many people attend church is the welcoming nature you mentioned--you don't have to be certain that you have certain beliefs to be there. If this church gives you the opportunity to give to the community and feel wholesome, whether or not you're committed to the church and 100% a Christian/Catholic/etc. shouldn't matter. Even if you never do find a religion that fits your beliefs, you're happy with how things are, and I think that's the point of religion in the first place. 

 

I don't personally go to church (I was raised by a mother who loathed her strict Catholic upbringing, now I'm Atheist) so I'm not on the same page entirely, but I do enjoy donating to and volunteering with local organizations, including some that even have religious roots. As long as its for a good cause, I have no problem with that.

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On 4/29/2018 at 12:24 AM, HeatherMarie said:

Sorry for bumping up such an old thread, but I've been thinking about something lately and I know a lot of users around here are people who's opinions I respect, so.... If anyone would like to weigh in on this? 

 

Do you think it's strange that I tithe consistently despite not being ready to commit to the church, and not really knowing yet what exactly I believe or how much of what they preach I actually believe? It's just been on my mind a bit because a few weeks ago a friend expressed surprise when I mentioned tithing, because she knows I'm still trying to figure things out for myself and I'm not really sure where I stand when it comes to God and the Bible and such.

 

This is what I've been thinking: I don't have much money, I'm very much below poverty level, but I really like to give to good causes when I'm able to. I've given many times to the local Humane Society, and to No Kid Hungry, for example. I kind of see this the same way. I've attended enough services at this church to feel that they are a good church, to feel that they are preaching in a way that is welcoming and non-discriminatory and makes people really listen and think. I've interacted with enough of the people there to know that there are many, many people who have benefited from this church in some way. And I know this church doesn't simply preach God's word, they are very active in our community, they hold fundraisers for the more in-need schools and donate food and supplies to children, they have a big van they take around town to hand out supplies to the homeless, etc. So, the way I see it, it doesn't really matter what I personally believe regarding God and all that. This church does good, and I want to help with that if I can. 

 

But.... Is it strange that I do that when I'm still so questioning about my own beliefs?

 

(Bit more explanation, I've been very reluctant with religious matters in the past due to many churches insisting I'm going to hell for being gay (I once had a preacher lecture me about it for a whole hour). I know I believe in some sort of higher power, but beyond that I'm not really sure. I'm very hesitant about doing anything to 'commit' to this church, like baptism or whatever, until I figure out more. I've only been attending this church for about 6 months, and not every single week, and it's the first church I've *ever* attended with any sort of regularity.)

 

Hello on tithing it is not how much you give it is that you do give there is a story in the bible about a woman giving all she had. Now what he ment was she gave more than the rest cause she gave with her heart. I hope this helped you.

 

Mark 12:41-44 King James Version (KJV)

41 And Jesus sat over against the treasury, and beheld how the people cast money into the treasury: and many that were rich cast in much.

42 And there came a certain poor widow, and she threw in two mites, which make a farthing.

43 And he called unto him his disciples, and saith unto them, Verily I say unto you, That this poor widow hath cast more in, than all they which have cast into the treasury:

44 For all they did cast in of their abundance; but she of her want did cast in all that she had, even all her living.

Edited by Laryal

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I was raised Lutheran and realized pretty early in my life that it wasn't the religion for me. Still had to stay a part of the church until I was 18 due to my mother being afraid of how her older relatives would see it if I left the church. I had to take Christian classes at school for years while finding everything we studied there completely ridiculous. I got pretty fed up towards the end and basically just started to look forward to all the moral debates we had in class about controversial subjects such as abortion or euthanasia as I knew I would disagree with most of the group. I needed some sort of an outlet for my frustration and as such chose to be pretty active and vocal, loudly questioning things while still staying civil in most of my arguments. However, I do still remember one of the debates I had with another kid ended with them saying something to the effect of "well the Bible says this so it must be" and me responding to it with "honestly, I don't give a s**t about your bible". Good times. 😅

 

Nowadays I'd say that I'm an irreligious atheist. I feel like the world would be a better place if religions simply ceased to be. I acknowledge that religion has also driven humanity further to some degree amidst all the blood baths it has caused in history, but I still believe that in the modern setting we as a species would be much better off not believing in and starting wars for nonexistent invisible entities. One of my biggest motivators to this is the animal cruelty that goes on every day in the world due to ceremonial sacrifices, practices such as halal and just the general ignorance of people. Ignorance and atrocity often fueled by the disgusting belief that God supposedly made animals for man to use. That said, I don't really seek confrontation with religious people anymore like I used to as a youngster. I have Christian friends I get along with just fine despite our differing opinions and I feel that's how it should be too - to each their own.

Edited by Nagapie

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I'd say I'm something like an agnostic, strongly anti-religious, sometimes anti-theist person.

To be completely honest, religion scares me. I get extremely uncomfortable around very religious people who take their books literally. And religion that has political power downright terrifies me.

 

I don't know whether there is something out there. I think there might be? Probably? But I don't really like the thought and I strongly oppose the biblical/monotheist God. Existing or not, I don't want anything to do with them.

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"I love this interpretation of a prayer"

This interpretation of what prayer is has been shared lately. When I first saw it, someone commented that they appreciated the separation of prayer and religion within it. That made me do a big double take, because church is where I learned to pray. Then I thought more about it.

 

To me, prayer is conversation/connection with God. Our Creator is not restricted to any building, location, or single type of act; neither is our connection with God. God is present with us in every aspect of our lives, so that connection/conversation can happen in anything we experience/do. It does not have to be affiliated with any religion, though many people become more open to it when actively thinking of God and worshipping in a formal way. One of the signs we made that connection is an uplifting of our spirits, joy to our souls.

 

Also as I see it, given that God loves all of us, showing care for others is showing care for what God loves.  This piece is right on that it is a means of prayer.

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Myself being a Self-Practice Wicca, my studies have made me realize that the only true fact I can believe, is that I could be wrong, but I could also be right in only one way. I have no way to prove that someone else's faith is a cry into the dark, because mine could be just the same. I follow some Hindu, Budhism and Baptist practices alongside my own Wicca. 

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10 hours ago, Kazmirl said:

Myself being a Self-Practice Wicca, my studies have made me realize that the only true fact I can believe, is that I could be wrong, but I could also be right in only one way. I have no way to prove that someone else's faith is a cry into the dark, because mine could be just the same. I follow some Hindu, Budhism and Baptist practices alongside my own Wicca. 

I think that's a mature thought process regarding religion, and the world would be a much better place if everyone thought the same.

 

I think that Ego and fear of uncertainty make people lash out to "prove" their religion is the right one, because having doubts and considering that it might just be stories terrifies some people.

 

I don't necessarily have a problem with religion and magical thinking if it's on a personal level, but when people decide reality and how other people live their lives should take a back seat in favour of their religion, I get annoyed. I think the people living and feeling and suffering around us right now are more important than what may happen after death. 

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I would call myself an Atheist, even though I'm offically Catholic. Since I grow up in a fairly religious enviroment, I can understand why people believe in a god or gods for that matter.

But being part of religion since I was a little child I realized that this world view is not for me. In my eyes there it's highly unlogical that a powerful and highly intelligent creature created everyone and everything. Something really stupid is that we have to take Christian classes or "Ethik" (which is kind like philosphy class, I suppose?) at school until highschool. We really didn't learnt anything there, except something like "God is love", which was basic knowledge. Seriously, not joking here.

However, regardless of all the nonsense we've learnt, the Christian classes made me at least respect Christians - not talking about the higher members of the church, like the pope, I despise them with a passion, but about normal religious people. Especially in later classes we had to view our beliefs critically and they were surprisingly open minded. We had the topic "Love" in year 8, I think and there was a section about homosexual relationships and it was amazing to see that the book said that the book actually accepts gay relationships and called it normal.

What I also appreciate is that there a Christian organisations that help people. I'm for example part of Die Johanniter, which is an aid organization of the Orden of St. John in Germany. Yes, there were wars in the past in the name of the church (like in medieval times) and there is still corruption, but Christianity did also good things, don't forget that.

I also don't know any Christian that is a fanatic. They're aware that most of the things that is written in the bible is false. They support the LGBT community and don't agree with everything the church says.

I have a lot of positive experiences with Christianity and I very sure that in almost every religion there are normal, critical thinking people, be it Catholics, Protestants, Muslims etc. Really, I don't like the bias some Atheists have (not necassary in this forum, I'm discussing religion with people on the internet for almost a decade now) without looking into the religion itself or necassary talking to religious people. It makes me sad and ashamed to be an Atheist. Same goes with religious people who demonize other people's beliefs. It's childish and sometimes I feel like I've been thrown back into kindergarden.

Stop it, you are all wrong.

Regardless what beliefs you have, you always have to be critical about it. There might not be any proof that god(s) exist, however, there are also no evidence that disprove their existence.

13 hours ago, Kazmirl said:

Myself being a Self-Practice Wicca, my studies have made me realize that the only true fact I can believe, is that I could be wrong, but I could also be right in only one way. I have no way to prove that someone else's faith is a cry into the dark, because mine could be just the same. I follow some Hindu, Budhism and Baptist practices alongside my own Wicca. 

Thank you.

 

-Ghost

Edited by JustAGhost

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22 hours ago, Kazmirl said:

Myself being a Self-Practice Wicca, my studies have made me realize that the only true fact I can believe, is that I could be wrong, but I could also be right in only one way. I have no way to prove that someone else's faith is a cry into the dark, because mine could be just the same. I follow some Hindu, Budhism and Baptist practices alongside my own Wicca. 

 

This is wonderful, I really wish more people understood that. There is no definitive proof that *any* specific religion is The One (and no, a book written long ago by many different humans is not 'proof'). It seems kind of naive to insist that any specific religion is wrong, because there is no actual proof either way. 

 

I think, from what I've experienced with super-religious people, a lot of people *need* their religion. A lot of people are terrified to believe there might not be a heaven, might not be anything at all after this life, or they think without a God and Heaven this life is meaningless. So their religion *has* to be True because anything else is just too scary. But a lot of people seem to have this feeling/view that if other people don't believe what they believe, somehow that affects them. I've actually encountered people who won't be friends with atheists or agnostics, and the vibe I got from them is that somehow they think that person's view will rub off on them, or 'taint' them in God's eyes or something. Because I acknowledge that there is no absolute proof of any one religion being right, that view just baffles me.

 

(Although, to be honest a lot of the 'can't do these things in this life' doesn't make sense to me, coming from the view of 'maybe there is a God but nothing can be known for sure' I personally just don't understand people devoting their entire lives to God in a way that causes their lives to suffer or deprives them...)

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I'm an Atheist, religion has really never been my thing. Science has always been more interesting to me, even when I was little. I come from a family that's protestant christian on both sides, but my parents were less strict about it so religion was never forced on me and a lot of times I feel sad for people whose parents do force it on them. As long as religion isn't forced though, I know that life can be scary and for some people, religion really helps out both by explaining things and by offering hope and reason. I'm fine with that kind of religion, but I really don't like it when people use religion as an excuse to be intolerant of others, as many people often do. :unsure:

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On ‎10‎/‎28‎/‎2018 at 7:46 AM, JustAGhost said:

I also don't know any Christian that is a fanatic. They're aware that most of the things that is written in the bible is false.

-Ghost

Most of what you wrote I appreciate pretty well, but I disagree with the statement, "They're aware that most of the things that is written in the bible is false."  Part of the problem stems from folks trying to take poor translations literally.

 

To me as a Christian, much of the bible is history, some of it is contains idioms no longer used anywhere else and therefore very difficult to translate correctly, and for outright miracles, faith comes in. A very important part of discerning what's what is to study the context carefully.

 

For example, the creation story can be interpreted to align with the big bang theory and evolution when you consider ancient storytelling used "day" to represent a section of time that was not necessarily an actual day, but rather represented some significant achievement or event(s). In my mind, science tries to tell what & how; religion is more focused on who and why; they are not mutually exclusive.

 

The key thing for me about the bible is to understand the message within the story and how it pertains to life today. Laws in the Old Testament were primarily to keep people accountable for doing what was right in society and to help them stay healthy. Punishments look much different today than they did back then, but the intent is the same.

 

In the New Testament, Jesus taught us to go beyond simply obeying the laws to something better - a loving relationship with God and one another. If you have a healthy, loving relationship with someone, you generally will not need to worry about the law with regard to them because you will not come close to breaking it; instead, you will enrich their life far beyond what the law requires.

 

I know in my heart and bones that God is real, loves every single one of us, and wants us to have a healthy relationship with our Creator (and with one another). However, your relationship with God is your choice; I am not in your shoes and cannot tell you what you must do about it. I accept your right to deny God exists and will not insist you say otherwise. However, I will tell anyone interested about my beliefs and, if they wish, help them explore Christianity for themselves. According to the bible, Jesus told us we should, and I cannot help but do so out of joy-filled love.

Edited by Awdz Bodkins

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I don't know any Christian who would say that the stuff in the Bible is false. That's kind of the opposite of what a Christian is. They believe the Bible contains the Word of God, contains the miracles He has performed and the accounts of Jesus's sacrifice, etc etc. Most Christians I know would get very very defensive if someone said the Bible is false. Now, not everything in the Bible is *current* in terms of what God wants for us and such, that's why there is a difference between the Old Testament and the New Testament. But saying it's false? Never known a Christian who would say that. 

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