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Old May 23rd, 2008, 09:52 AM   #61
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actually this from Dan Barker helps explain what I was trying to say as well:

Dear Believer, — You asked me to consider Christianity as the answer for my life. I have done that. I consider it untrue, repugnant, and harmful.
You expect me to believe Jesus was born of a virgin impregnated by a ghost? Do you believe all the crazy tales of ancient religions? Julius Caesar was reportedly born of a virgin; Roman historian Seutonius said Augustus bodily rose to heaven when he died; and Buddha was supposedly born speaking. You don't believe all that, do you? Why do you expect me to swallow the fables of Christianity?
I find it incredible that you ask me to believe that the earth was created in six literal days; women come from a man's rib; a snake, a donkey, and a burning bush spoke human language; the entire world was flooded, covering the mountains to drown evil; all animal species, millions of them, rode on one boat; language variations stem from the tower of Babel; Moses had a magic wand; the Nile turned to blood; a stick turned into a snake; witches, wizards, and sorcerers really exist; food rained from the sky for 40 years; people were cured by the sight of a brass serpent; the sun stood still to help Joshua win a battle, and it went backward for King Hezekiah; men survived unaided in a fiery furnace; a detached hand floated in the air and wrote on a wall; men followed a star which directed them to a particular house; Jesus walked on water unaided; fish and bread magically multiplied to feed the hungry; water instantly turned into wine; mental illness is caused by demons; a �devil� with wings exists who causes evil; people were healed by stepping into a pool agitated by angels; disembodied voiced spoke from the sky; Jesus vanished and later materialized from thin air; people were healed by Peter's shadow; angels broke people out of jail; a fiery lake of eternal torment awaits unbelievers under the earth ... while there is life-after-death in a city which is 1,500 miles cubed, with mansions and food, for Christians only.
If you believe these stories, then you are the one with the problem, not me. These myths violate natural law, contradict science, and fail to correspond with reality or logic. If you can't see that, then you can't separate truth from fantasy. It doesn't matter how many people accept delusions inflicted by �holy� men; a widely held lie is still a lie. If you are so gullible, then you are like the child who believes the older brother who says there is a monster in the hallway. But there is nothing to be afraid of; go turn on the light and look for yourself.
If Christianity were simply untrue I would not be too concerned. Santa is untrue, but it is a harmless myth which people outgrow. But Christianity, besides being false, is also abhorrent. It amazes me that you claim to love the god of the bible, a hateful, arrogant, sexist, cruel being who can't tolerate criticism. I would not want to live in the same neighborhood with such a creature!
The biblical god is a macho male warrior. Though he said “Thou shalt not kill,” he ordered death for all opposition, wholesale drowning and mass exterminations; punishes offspring to the fourth generation (Ex. 20:5); ordered pregnant women and children to be ripped up (Hos. 13:16); demands animal and human blood to appease his angry vanity; is partial to one race of people; judges women to be inferior to men; is a sadist who created a hell to torture unbelievers; created evil (Is. 45:7); discriminated against the handicapped (Lev. 21:18-23); ordered virgins to be kept as spoils of war (Num. 31:15-18, Deut. 21:11-14); spread dung on people's faces (Mal. 2:3); sent bears to devour 42 children who teased a prophet (II Kings 2:23-24); punishes people with snakes, dogs, dragons, drunkenness, swords, arrows, axes, fire, famine, and infanticide; and said fathers should eat their sons (Ez. 5:10). Is that nice? Would you want to live next door to such a person?
And Jesus is a chip off the old block. He said, �I and my father are one,� and he upheld �every jot and tittle� of the Old Testament law. Mt. 5:18 He preached the same old judgment: vengeance and death, wrath and distress, hell and torture for all nonconformists. He believed in demons, angels and spirits. He never denounced the subjugation of slaves or women. Women were excluded as disciples and as guests at his heavenly table. Except for hell he introduced nothing new to ethics or philosophy. He was disrespectful of his mother and brothers; he said we should hate our parents and desert our families. Mt. 10:35-36, Lk. 14:26 (So much for �Christian family life.�) He denounced anger, but was often angry himself. Mt. 5:22, Mk. 3:5 He called people �fools� (Mt. 23:17,19), �serpents,� and �white sepulchers,� though he warned that such language puts you in danger of hellfire. Mt. 5:22 He said �Think not that I am come to send peace on earth. I came not to send peace, but a sword." Mt. 10:34 (So much for �Peace on Earth.�) He irrationally cursed and withered a fig tree for being barren out of season. Mt. 21:19 He mandated burning unbelievers. Jn. 15:6 (The Church has complied with relish.) He stole a horse. Lk. 19:30-33 He told people to cut off hands, feet, eyes and sexual organs. Mt. 5:29-30, 19:12 You want me to accept Jesus, but I think I'll pick my own friend, thank you.
One of Jesus's many contradictions was saying good works should be seen, and not seen. Mt. 5:16, 6:1-4 One of his mistakes was saying that the mustard plant has the smallest seed. Mt. 13:31-32 The writers of Matthew and Luke could not even get his genealogy straight, contradicting the Old Testament, and giving Jesus two discrepant lines through Joseph, his non-father!
I also find Christianity to be morally repugnant. The concepts of original sin, depravity, substitutionary forgiveness, intolerance, eternal punishment, and humble worship are all beneath the dignity of intelligent human beings and conflict with the values of kindness and reason. They are barbaric ideas for primitive cultures cowering in fear and ignorance.
Finally, Christianity is harmful. More people have been killed in the name of a god than for any other reason. The Church has a shameful, bloody history of Crusades, Inquisitions, witch-burnings, heresy trials, American colonial intolerance, disrespect of indigenous traditions (such as American Indians), support of slavery, and oppression of women. Modern “fruits” of religion include the Jonestown massacre, the callous fraud of “faith healers,” recent wars and ethnic cleansing, and fighting in Northern Ireland. Religion also poses a danger to mental health, damaging self-respect, personal responsibility, and clarity of thought.
Do you see why I do not respect the biblical message? It is an insulting bag of nonsense. You have every right to torment yourself with such insanity — but leave me out of it. I have better things to do with my life.

http://www.stephenjaygould.org/ctrl/..._believer.html

I may have to read that book.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 11:26 AM   #62
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I feel sorry for Dan Barker
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 11:57 AM   #63
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you'll find if you read his book, he is a very happy and satisfied person after his departure from religion.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 12:01 PM   #64
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Haven't been to church since I was 15. That was when I got my first job at KFC, and I always made sure I worked on a sunday. My mother always forced me to make a decision; Go to church or do yard and farm work with my father. I am so glad I work.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 12:21 PM   #65
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yeah, a "very close friend of mine" temporarily moved back in with her parents and she is kind of "made" to go to church, if she doesn't her mom tries to make her feel guilty...I think that is wrong. She is 24 years old. Good thing she does that though, or else she might stray from her faith and question it.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 12:37 PM   #66
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my house my rules. regardless of what they are.

there are other options any 24 year old citizen of this country could exercise if they can't bear the thought of spending an hour or so respecting their parents' wishes each week...
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 12:50 PM   #67
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my house my rules. regardless of what they are.

there are other options any 24 year old citizen of this country could exercise if they can't bear the thought of spending an hour or so respecting their parents' wishes each week...
and that's why your kids will be psyched when they move out. Me, my parents never forced anything on me like that and you know what, I stayed at home a couple extra years to attend community college, had my parents been like what you are describing, I would have hauled ass into the dorms and been in waaaaay more debt than necessary and probably would have gotten myself into more trouble than necessary.

curious, do you feel that your child's beliefs are supposed to coincide with yours? Since you are a Christian does that automatically make them Christians? Going further, if you are a Republican, are your children automatically Republicans?

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Old May 23rd, 2008, 01:09 PM   #68
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and that's why your kids will be psyched when they move out. Me, my parents never forced anything on me like that and you know what, I stayed at home a couple extra years to attend community college, had my parents been like what you are describing, I would have hauled ass into the dorms and been in waaaaay more debt than necessary and probably would have gotten myself into more trouble than necessary.

curious, do you feel that your child's beliefs are supposed to coincide with yours? Since you are a Christian does that automatically make them Christians? Going further, if you are a Republican, are your children automatically Republicans?
on the contrary, my parents had that same attitude. (regarding rules, not the particular rule your girlfriend is languishing under) I was the only one of my 3 brothers (edit 3 brothers, 4 of us boys total) that did not leave home to attend school. Mostly cause I hadn't yet made up my mind what education to pursue, and had landed a decent job right out of high school, and thus worked, and went to school in the initial years before starting out on my own with housing.

Interestingly enough, I'm also the only one that still lives in the same state as my parents. Kind of blows your theory eh?

My children are not overly sheltered from this world. As a physical example, ask _f_ about how hard my 8 year old and I play baseball hurling the ball at each other. My kids will be prepared to make their own decisions in life. And no, they are not automatically "assigned" to any theistic, non-theistic, political, or social group just because I am.

That being said, while they are in my house, they will follow my rules. Regardless of what those rules are. At the age of 24, it should NOT be a time/place for an ADULT to get all cozy and do as they please whilst enjoying free rent.

Should it be the decision of my kids, when they reach the age of 24 to move back in, or remain living with us, they will have decisions to make. If those decisions involve more debt than is prudent and they have to learn from those mistakes so be it. They still will be living in the land of opportunity, and should they react/respond to those lessons responsibly and have a repayment plan in place then they won't go hungry, or be forced to eat ramen noodles, and sleep in shelter. (e.g. they'll have the ability to draw against their trust, and/or borrow from us)

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Old May 23rd, 2008, 02:50 PM   #69
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what, if anything does that have to do with the balance of individual vs. majority rights in a republic-based democracy?

regardless, the very argumentative, and inflammatory/divisive language used suggests at a minimum that the author (and by extraction you through association with a professed affinity to his statements) do indeed have a problem with Christians, regardless if you are inconvenienced by a handful of laws, or regulations which in part may be based on the wishes of a majority of votes influenced by Christians.

In a previous post you take issue that you can't purchase alcohol prior to noon, and a host of other nonsense that apparently you view as a grievous restriction of your personal freedoms.

For once, I'd rather see you rail against the FACT that our republic is essentially for sale. Instead of trying to drink away your misery before Sunday's brunch, how about trying figure out a way to criminalize (or more efficiently prosecute) the process of buying votes in this country...
I agree with the alternative courses of action, and that's another thread well worth starting, but it brings back my desire for people to watch the zeitgeist movie (especially a smart guy like you Rye). Skip the part about religion if you want. I don't care. It doesn't change the rest of it. While I'm on the subject, those that haven't seen Loose Change 2nd Edition yet really should. Oh yeah, we have plenty to be upset about....

But Rye, in all fairness, you know that nonbelievers have been persecuted far longer than believers. Christianity has ruled the majority of the world for over a thousand years, and now atheists are finally being able to come out openly and speak up without being burned at the stake (like gay guys! *snap-snap*!!!).

And as far as your earlier comment about Roman persecution, the Romans put more than just Christians in the coliseum to fight. Soldiers from all of their conquests, people that displeased them, people that spoke out. It wasn't just a Christian persecution, it was a place for people to be made an example of, so if we are going to point out Christians being fed to the lions, let's also talk about everyone that suffered the same fate.

Finally, Rome made Christianity their official religion under Theodosius.... Christianity had been previously viewed as subversive, Rome was declining quickly, Christianity was seen as a major cause, yet they made it the official religion.... Now why would they do that?

Maybe, just maybe, there was an understanding that Christianity was about bowing to one higher god, and not the emporer;

and maybe, just maybe, the Roman citizens were tired of bowing to their emporers (let's face it, the Caesers were a mess) who lived in splendor and decadence and subjagted the people;

and maybe, just maybe, they were smart enough to realize then what is obvious now, that you have no kingdom and no power if you have no one to rule over;

and maybe, just maybe, it seemed like a good idea to declare the religion official and create a church to govern it and put leaders in place that you find favorable. After all, I doubt that the bishops and all were elected by the Christian citizenry;

and maybe, just maybe, as Rome proper fell, there was a simultaneous rise to power of the Roman Catholic Church, who ruled with as strong a hand and as severe of methodology as the earlier Roman empire;

and maybe, just maybe, there was such a vehement denial of the sciences and brutal obstruction of such because it fostered inquiry and independent thought;

and maybe, just maybe, such thought wqas producing ideas that were antithetical to the Roman Catholic Church, thus their brutal treatment of those that had other ideas;

and maybe, just maybe, in the last 100 years or so the independent thought is spreading like wildfire and more and that might be why the Roman Catholic Church keeps lightening the rules and their methods. Lord knows they could never have people slain as they once did.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 02:58 PM   #70
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Originally Posted by RyeBread View Post
what, if anything does that have to do with the balance of individual vs. majority rights in a republic-based democracy?

regardless, the very argumentative, and inflammatory/divisive language used suggests at a minimum that the author (and by extraction you through association with a professed affinity to his statements) do indeed have a problem with Christians, regardless if you are inconvenienced by a handful of laws, or regulations which in part may be based on the wishes of a majority of votes influenced by Christians.

In a previous post you take issue that you can't purchase alcohol prior to noon, and a host of other nonsense that apparently you view as a grievous restriction of your personal freedoms.

For once, I'd rather see you rail against the FACT that our republic is essentially for sale. Instead of trying to drink away your misery before Sunday's brunch, how about trying figure out a way to criminalize (or more efficiently prosecute) the process of buying votes in this country...
i missed this post until now. That didn't have anything to do with rights except it expressed annoyance with trying to be proselytized. I feel this goes along with the rights violations. Dan Barker used to be an evangelical preacher and now fights these rights violations and state/church separation issues. Don't worry I'm not drinking my Sunday mornings away, I've only tried to buy once at this time and it was for my uncle to pay him for some welding he did for me.

also, you think that being against the government legislating bullshit rules based on religious belief is nonsensical?
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 02:59 PM   #71
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i missed this post until now. That didn't have anything to do with rights except it expressed annoyance with trying to be proselytized. I feel this goes along with the rights violations. Dan Barker used to be an evangelical preacher and now fights these rights violations and state/church separation issues. Don't worry I'm not drinking my Sunday mornings away, I've only tried to buy once at this time and it was for my uncle to pay him for some welding he did for me.
You don't owe him an explanation. That's like the guilt driven confessions of church.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 03:03 PM   #72
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I totally get where you're coming from. I am not hostile towards the average believer, I just think it's fun to argue. The problem I do have with religious beliefs is when they are dangerous or infringe upon my rights. I feel like that is becoming the case. I don't like it when people fly planes into buildings because they don't like our country and they think it's what their god wants them to do. I don't agree with misogyny, violence, cruelty, and downright creepiness of certain religious texts. I don't agree with religion and I do not want to support it in the least, thus my despising "faith based initiatives". It also bothers me when people refer to our nation as "founded as a Christian nation", when any moron can look at the Constitution and not find one word about Christianity or God. We have a secular Government and I would like it to stay that way. I don't like that we have this un-official religious test for public officials. If you want to be president, you better god-damn well be a Christian and have a pastor. I think this is ridiculous. I think it is ridiculous that I cannot buy a 6-pack of Guinness before noon on a Sunday or not at all in certain counties. I despise the addition of religiosity to our nation after the fact, like the adding of "In God We Trust" to money and that people just accept it because they think it has always been there. I don't like that atheists are the most untrusted group of people in this country, even though we are the most under represented group in our nations prison system. So, in conclusion, I really don't care if you believe some delusion, but I don't want the dogma of that delusion to affect me.
RyeBread, please expound on how this is nonsense? I don't follow you, is there an untruth here?
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 03:08 PM   #73
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I like off roading.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 03:11 PM   #74
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I like off roading.
x2 i like web wheeling better, less broken parts + less gas
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 03:30 PM   #75
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RyeBread, please expound on how this is nonsense? I don't follow you, is there an untruth here?
did I call it nonsense? I don't recall doing so. I do recall stating that there is a fine balancing act between individual rights, and those of the majority.

There are countless nonsensical laws on the books that are non-theistically influenced that could/should draw your ire, but for whatever reason don't. I think that isolating your angst against the theistic based ones just happens to be your cross to bear for whatever reason :tonka: almost makes me wonder if you were slapped around by a nun, or perhaps turned on by one and struggle with the guilt

As for Buzz: I'll also have to do some refreshing on history, as by my off the cuff reckoning the Catholic Church has not ruled the greater part of the world for 1,000 years... For one, to my knowledge it has never ruled the orient/indo-china, and while Great Britain may have ruled India as a colony, the dominant British religion/denomination certainly wasn't in control of India.

I'm done with the thread for a while, as the commute home beckons.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 03:46 PM   #76
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I like off roading.
me too but there is a hole in my transfer case
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 03:50 PM   #77
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I agree with the alternative courses of action, and that's another thread well worth starting, but it brings back my desire for people to watch the zeitgeist movie (especially a smart guy like you Rye). Skip the part about religion if you want. I don't care. It doesn't change the rest of it. While I'm on the subject, those that haven't seen Loose Change 2nd Edition yet really should. Oh yeah, we have plenty to be upset about....

But Rye, in all fairness, you know that nonbelievers have been persecuted far longer than believers. Christianity has ruled the majority of the world for over a thousand years, and now atheists are finally being able to come out openly and speak up without being burned at the stake (like gay guys! *snap-snap*!!!).

And as far as your earlier comment about Roman persecution, the Romans put more than just Christians in the coliseum to fight. Soldiers from all of their conquests, people that displeased them, people that spoke out. It wasn't just a Christian persecution, it was a place for people to be made an example of, so if we are going to point out Christians being fed to the lions, let's also talk about everyone that suffered the same fate.

Finally, Rome made Christianity their official religion under Theodosius.... Christianity had been previously viewed as subversive, Rome was declining quickly, Christianity was seen as a major cause, yet they made it the official religion.... Now why would they do that?

Maybe, just maybe, there was an understanding that Christianity was about bowing to one higher god, and not the emporer;

and maybe, just maybe, the Roman citizens were tired of bowing to their emporers (let's face it, the Caesers were a mess) who lived in splendor and decadence and subjagted the people;

and maybe, just maybe, they were smart enough to realize then what is obvious now, that you have no kingdom and no power if you have no one to rule over;

and maybe, just maybe, it seemed like a good idea to declare the religion official and create a church to govern it and put leaders in place that you find favorable. After all, I doubt that the bishops and all were elected by the Christian citizenry;

and maybe, just maybe, as Rome proper fell, there was a simultaneous rise to power of the Roman Catholic Church, who ruled with as strong a hand and as severe of methodology as the earlier Roman empire;

and maybe, just maybe, there was such a vehement denial of the sciences and brutal obstruction of such because it fostered inquiry and independent thought;

and maybe, just maybe, such thought wqas producing ideas that were antithetical to the Roman Catholic Church, thus their brutal treatment of those that had other ideas;

and maybe, just maybe, in the last 100 years or so the independent thought is spreading like wildfire and more and that might be why the Roman Catholic Church keeps lightening the rules and their methods. Lord knows they could never have people slain as they once did.

I'll take all your Maybe's and counter with a Maybe Not.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 03:51 PM   #78
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you'll find if you read his book, he is a very happy and satisfied person after his departure from religion.
He might be happy but in my eyes I hope he's really happy now because his eternity is going to unbearable.
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 04:21 PM   #79
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do you think Fred Phelps will have an unbearable eternity?
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Old May 23rd, 2008, 05:13 PM   #80
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do you think Fred Phelps will have an unbearable eternity?
the majority of phelps' own children have been quoted as suggesting that he isn't religious, and that his 'church' and supposed religious beliefs are a cover for his addiction to hatred.

I certainly hope you aren't attempting to suggest that he is a legitimate representative of the Christian faith.

That's like trying to suggest that all homosexuals are serial killers since afterall, the following prominent ones were homosexuals: Andrew Cunanan, John Wayne Gacy, Patrick Wayne Kearney, Gilles de Rais, Randy Steven Kraft, Michael Swango, Andrei Chikatilo, David D. Hill, Wayne Williams, Larry Eyler, Henry Lee Lucas, Fritz Haarmann, and Jeffery Dahmer
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