Is God a delusion?

They go hand in hand, or are two sides of the same coin, aren’t they. If God is not trustworthy then we can have no confidence in him. If he is, well… And we could talk about epistemic humility, if you’d like.

I don’t think so. Trust with humility looks one way, trust with a smirk is something else.

We have. No point.

I think you raise a great point Mark. However, I also do not think that confidence always = arrogance. I would hope my boys have confidence in my deep, abiding love for them, but I would have firm words to say if they were strutting about at school, picking on a kid who (for sake of argument) doesn’t know who his dad was.

Similarly, the Bible calls out selfish pride and arrogance as sin every time. And no wonder, my confidence in God’s love for me is not based on my own track record or meritorious behaviour - if it was I would have plenty of reason to swagger about. No God’s set his affection upon me because of his good pleasure flowing from his unchanging character, and my right standing before him is based on the faithfulness of another, namely, Jesus.

So on the one hand, I can have profound confidence in God’s love for me, and yet, since I have done nothing to earn it, that same love is deeply humbling. The more that confidence grows, the more humble it ought to make me.

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For me personally I think it’s a matter of faith. To be more clear I don’t believe that there is any solid proof of Yahweh’s existence. Not historically, scientifically or anecdotally. This paradigm of mine often makes both atheists and other Christian’s upset. They want you to make the claim you have evidence of God and when you are upfront that your faith is truly faith, and not just evidence it angers and baffles some.

But it’s not quite as black and white but it does hinge on my statement of solid proof. I believe that there is evidence, just evidence that requires faith, to justify a belief in God. By that I mean that with all the evidence there is a bridge and that bridge is faith. It’s either faith that it’s just pure coincidence or either it’s intervention. I choose to place my faith into the intervention and I’m confident enough in that belief that it shaped my entire life and worldview. I’m not agnostic. I don’t think maybe there is a gof or maybe there is not. I believe 100% in God. I’m just also self aware enough to realize that as unlikely as I think it is, everything could coincidental and in delusional. But I don’t interpret it like that.

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Agreed. I’m confident enough that I need to be cautious about accusing others of arrogance. But then you haven’t repeatedly pressed the same cherished anecdotes on me while insisting I should drop any opinions I may have in light of your revelation. Those like the mods here who can balance confidence with humility have all my respect. All I can say is I am trying to do the same regardless of my results. Please bear with me.

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Christian faith is not a blind faith and a brute force decision to ‘just believe’, as it sounds like you are implying. I’m reminded of the anecdote about the Christian and the impending flood – it even has its own Wikipedia article: Parable of the drowning man - Wikipedia.

He had empirical evidence that God was caring for him. Yes, it’s just an anecdote, but it exemplifies (not very well, actually) the real experiences of many with respect to God’s providence and guidance in their lives. I won’t cite my favorite so @MarkD doesn’t gag :wink: (although repetition is a good learning tool, not always successful), but I will reference Rich Stearns again. It is a better example than the aforementioned fictional flood anecdote, because the ‘co-instants’ were real and more remarkable, and they constitute empirical evidence of God’s providential guidance. Some will not have seen it yet, so I won’t apologize, and it is a whole set of co-instants, disparate except for the infused meaning common to all of them:

All I’m saying is that ultimately it comes down to faith. There is also the possibility that it was just a coincidence. After all incredible coincidences happens all the time. We just choose to either side with faith in it being divine or faith that it is coincidences. But it always requires faith. Without faith, there is no believing because you could always believe something else.

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Rich already had faith. The account would be silly if he weren’t already a Christian. If he hadn’t been a Christian, they would not have been recruiting him to head a Christian NGO.

(Believing something else is still a kind of faith. It is a matter of what kinds of evidence you accept or decry.)

You have 2 options. Either God exists and is evil or he doesnt and believing in him is an actuall delussion.

These are the only 2 unbiased options i can think of.

Well in conclusion yes… mostly

I hate when Christians try to justify why God allows suffering etc etc.

All they need to say “we dont know” . Anything else beyond that is making their god look bad. No real arguments from their side

Sorry for your loss, but it appears that your faith was in your mother’s faith and was not your own faith. Please go back to Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John and know Jesus for yourself. Do not take anyone else’s word for who Jesus is.

Do not build back something that was not right in the first place. Know Him for yourself and build anew.

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In all honesty you are right, I have always felt that my faith was my mother’s faith not my own and frankly I can already tell trying to find it, if at all is going to be challenging.

It’s another of Jack’s typical nested fallacies. Broadcast '41-44 on the BBC of all things, with no interlocutor I’m sure, published in '52. His peers at Oxford would have torn him shreds but that would never have gone in to the public domain. It needed the democratization of knowledge and more, the restoration of the commons of discourse, afforded by the internet for the common man to see the emperor naked.

For any much-remembered words of some past author, there will always be the eager detractors eagerly proclaiming their protest. Meanwhile, a couple generations later, there may be good reason why it’s Lewis’ wit and wisdom that is getting remembered and repeated, pithy and proximal to human experience and the transcendant that it is. As to the words of his detractors … well … feel free to prove me wrong. Let’s totter their wisdom out from the dark corners and into the light; set it beside Lewis’ observations to examine it and see how it fares.

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There weren’t at the time as it suited the establishment. Lewis’ second rate logic, i.e. rhetoric, is used in apologetics as the gold standard still. In the Alpha course. Better than specious dross like Lane Craig’s and even Platinga’s.

So, I have an idea what you’re getting at here, but here, like usual on this forum, you only make vague jibes. Is there something you would like to say or ascribe to, that is articulated in sufficient detail to engender worthwhile discussion, or even, be subject to worthwhile scrutiny? Don’t get me wrong. Probably you have devoted a lot more thought to these topics than me, and I would not withstand a debate, but still I think, scoffing is cheap, and explanation is better.

I think what he’s saying is that while we would expect a lawgiver to be present if we have a law, it’s not necessarily a proof. Alistair McGrath, a Christian intellectual who also critiqued Dawkins, does agree that there is a bit of excess confidence in this argument if we take it too strictly. That’s not to say there isn’t a good argument, but this is not a strong one.

Lewis’ area of expertise was in literature, though he had a strong liberal arts education. A Catholic Oxbridge scholar once pointed out an error in his arguments for God, and he had to agree she was right.

He makes me think, but I agree that his philosophical arguments are not perfect. I’ve not had any formal philosophical study, but I’m finding some of the books for kids interesting. :slight_smile: One by Sharon kay from a Jesuit university in the Midwest is teaching me. I can comment more by PM, if you like.

It’s good to critique ourselves; I’m trying to do that with my kids. I have to admit that my own Christian teachers didn’t know what they were saying when they critiqued evolution, and that sort of extends to the area of philosophy–an area I wish I had more training. Thanks.

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I’m glad you feel that way. It seems many people look at philosophy as a body of knowledge as if knowing who said what was what mattered. I feel lucky to have had an undergraduate experience at least with philosophy. I feel the same way as you toward what Christy shares about linguistics. There is a lot to be garnered from many fields of study. I also sometimes wish I’d studied literature at school sometimes. But you know who I find hates the field of philosophy by far the most? Atheists.

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I find that claim most peculiar… My first guess is that this is only a facet of the “new atheists.” For I don’t see much reason to believe this regarding atheists in the past.

A pattern which I have noticed in the history of philosophy (excluding ancient Greek philosophy), is some new philosophical paradigm produced by the efforts to defend theism and Christianity which is then adapted by atheists and then dominated by them. At least that is the pattern I see in existentialism and pragmatism.

As long as atheists are in the minority I would expect them to be the most thoughtful and analytical, questioning assumptions, which is the bread and butter of philosophy. It is only among the majority way of thinking that such things become unpopular.

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