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Subject: Theological question about Christianity rss

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jamuki (Jueguetistorias)
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Hi!

I have always wondered about the "faith" requirement of some religions - i.e, that even if one obeys all the ethical commands from The Lord, faith is still a must to be saved, and that, without faith, there is no salvation.

Would you recommend me some pointers - ie, important figures of religion (for instance, for Christianism it could be Luther) that have dealed with this problem in deep? Why is important for The Lord that one has faith?

Please, do not derail the thread - I am sincerely asking for help to try to understand this idea.
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There can be no figure more important in this discussion than Jesus. His background was the Torah initially.

Catholics also appreciate the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas.

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>sauron< Puss*GRAB*MON!" 'n00b'
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GROGnads wrote:
>sauron< Puss*GRAB*MON!" 'n00b'


Jamuki, no need to worry if GROGnads' posts make no sense to you. Eventually, some of them may.

I am sufficiently opposed to the idea of faith that I've encountered a number of arguments for it. If you have specific questions, I might be able to help (though, to check my bias, it'd be good to confirm that I'm being fair with someone who believes this stuff).

My impression of the most common Christian account is that faith in God represents placing your trust in ways which signal appropriate humility and gratitude for creation. If we were given sufficient evidence that faith became unnecessary to establish belief in God, then anyone could essentially compel God's approval by doing what He requires, and the cost of avoiding doing so would be so high that our choice about whether to obey would be coerced, rather than free enough to reflect our characters.
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GROGnads wrote:
>sauron< Puss*GRAB*MON!" 'n00b'
rinelk wrote:


Jamuki, no need to worry if GROGnads' posts make no sense to you. Eventually, some of them may.

I am sufficiently opposed to the idea of faith that I've encountered a number of arguments for it. If you have specific questions, I might be able to help (though, to check my bias, it'd be good to confirm that I'm being fair with someone who believes this stuff).

My impression of the most common Christian account is that faith in God represents placing your trust in ways which signal appropriate humility and gratitude for creation. If we were given sufficient evidence that faith became unnecessary to establish belief in God, then anyone could essentially compel God's approval by doing what He requires, and the cost of avoiding doing so would be so high that our choice about whether to obey would be coerced, rather than free enough to reflect our characters.
It was "legit" as any GIT in here, since now they HAVE some "configure out" at ONCE, and perhaps they shan't from the GIT "goings"?
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VikingBerserker wrote:
There can be no figure more important in this discussion than Jesus. His background was the Torah initially.

Catholics also appreciate the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas.


The Apostle Paul and the Pauline letters is a pretty deep place to start was my first thought.

The Protestant reformers wrote a lot about the three solas: sola fide, sola gracia, sola scriptura. Saved by faith alone through God's grace alone and scripture alone is needed to define doctrine.

That wasn't enough things alone so they added two more cool and made it five with solus Christo "through christ alone" and Soli Deo gloria "glory to God alone"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_solae
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"Practice Much" upon what was 'preached' before? There you were currently, or not then. You decide.
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jamuki wrote:
Hi!

I have always wondered about the "faith" requirement of some religions - i.e, that even if one obeys all the ethical commands from The Lord, faith is still a must to be saved, and that, without faith, there is no salvation.

Would you recommend me some pointers - ie, important figures of religion (for instance, for Christianism it could be Luther)


Have you read Romans, Galatians, and Hebrews from the bible? I'd say start with those (if you haven't already) to lay some ground work before reading some of the non-bible writers.

Are you more comfortable reading in another language besides English? This site has several languages and translations for you to choose from:

http://biblehub.com/niv/romans/1.htm
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VikingBerserker wrote:
There can be no figure more important in this discussion than Jesus. His background was the Torah initially.

Catholics also appreciate the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas.

While that is the Christian tradition, as a Jew I must say that it's just flat wrong.
 
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jamuki (Jueguetistorias)
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VikingBerserker wrote:
There can be no figure more important in this discussion than Jesus. His background was the Torah initially.

Catholics also appreciate the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas.



Thanks a ton. I did look (maybe not deeply enough) in Thomas Aquinas' works. I am very likely to have not understood him correctly but I never found why faith was needed for salvation. I understood the discussion to be about the nature and characteristics of faith, not why it was need for salvation.
 
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jamuki (Jueguetistorias)
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rinelk wrote:
GROGnads wrote:
>sauron< Puss*GRAB*MON!" 'n00b'


Jamuki, no need to worry if GROGnads' posts make no sense to you. Eventually, some of them may.

I am sufficiently opposed to the idea of faith that I've encountered a number of arguments for it. If you have specific questions, I might be able to help (though, to check my bias, it'd be good to confirm that I'm being fair with someone who believes this stuff).

My impression of the most common Christian account is that faith in God represents placing your trust in ways which signal appropriate humility and gratitude for creation. If we were given sufficient evidence that faith became unnecessary to establish belief in God, then anyone could essentially compel God's approval by doing what He requires, and the cost of avoiding doing so would be so high that our choice about whether to obey would be coerced, rather than free enough to reflect our characters.


Thanks a lot Kelsey. Do you have some references for that understanding?
 
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jamuki (Jueguetistorias)
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ironcates wrote:
VikingBerserker wrote:
There can be no figure more important in this discussion than Jesus. His background was the Torah initially.

Catholics also appreciate the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas.


The Apostle Paul and the Pauline letters is a pretty deep place to start was my first thought.

The Protestant reformers wrote a lot about the three solas: sola fide, sola gracia, sola scriptura. Saved by faith alone through God's grace alone and scripture alone is needed to define doctrine.

That wasn't enough things alone so they added two more cool and made it five with solus Christo "through christ alone" and Soli Deo gloria "glory to God alone"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Five_solae


Thanks a ton. Yes, I have read all those, but I did not read too mcuh about the Five solae. I will look for information about Sola fide. Thanks!
 
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jamuki (Jueguetistorias)
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whac3 wrote:
VikingBerserker wrote:
There can be no figure more important in this discussion than Jesus. His background was the Torah initially.

Catholics also appreciate the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas.

While that is the Christian tradition, as a Jew I must say that it's just flat wrong.


I've grown in a mixed catholic-jewish family, so this comment sounds familiar.
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Think of it like this: when you go to a therapist/psychiatrist, they doesn't tell you precisely what needs to happen in your life for you to move forward. Why? Because being handed the answer doesn't change who you are. It is external. It is merely good advice, and all of us disregard good advice all the time. But what the therapist does is take your thoughts as you share them and guide them down a particular path. Your thoughts take form, start to reveal patterns, and suddenly you have a breakthrough, a light bulb moment, and you understand what the therapist could have told you many hundreds of dollars previous. But now it isn't external. It's internal, it's part of you, it's from you, and it has a much greater chance of guiding your life going forward.

Faith is much the same way. God says "Love your neighbor." But if we could all look up and see a bank of celestial surveillance cameras, we would all be good. But it would all be external. We would all love our neighbors but never learn how. It wouldn't become part of us. It wouldn't change who we are. What we would learn is not how to love our neighbors but how to look over our shoulders at who is watching us. When you exert faith, test out things which others have shared but you risk living it yourself, that is when you have the ability to actually change.

Others have recommended reading Paul. Paul's focus is about faith being the end-all, be-all. But I would recommend reading James, particularly chapter 2. James will share with you about how you can let faith change your nature and become who God would have you become. God doesn't want to save you just for the sake of you being saved. He wants you to become more, to become what you were intended to be.
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jamuki (Jueguetistorias)
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Sarxis wrote:
jamuki wrote:
Hi!

I have always wondered about the "faith" requirement of some religions - i.e, that even if one obeys all the ethical commands from The Lord, faith is still a must to be saved, and that, without faith, there is no salvation.

Would you recommend me some pointers - ie, important figures of religion (for instance, for Christianism it could be Luther)


Have you read Romans, Galatians, and Hebrews from the bible? I'd say start with those (if you haven't already) to lay some ground work before reading some of the non-bible writers.

Are you more comfortable reading in another language besides English? This site has several languages and translations for you to choose from:

http://biblehub.com/niv/romans/1.htm


Thanks. I have read Romans and Galatians a lot times. I'll do it again, though.

I can read in English and Spanish. I can survive in Latin.
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Kelsey Rinella
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jamuki wrote:
rinelk wrote:
GROGnads wrote:
>sauron< Puss*GRAB*MON!" 'n00b'


Jamuki, no need to worry if GROGnads' posts make no sense to you. Eventually, some of them may.

I am sufficiently opposed to the idea of faith that I've encountered a number of arguments for it. If you have specific questions, I might be able to help (though, to check my bias, it'd be good to confirm that I'm being fair with someone who believes this stuff).

My impression of the most common Christian account is that faith in God represents placing your trust in ways which signal appropriate humility and gratitude for creation. If we were given sufficient evidence that faith became unnecessary to establish belief in God, then anyone could essentially compel God's approval by doing what He requires, and the cost of avoiding doing so would be so high that our choice about whether to obey would be coerced, rather than free enough to reflect our characters.


Thanks a lot Kelsey. Do you have some references for that understanding?


I don't--it's just my own synthesis of what I've seen people claim. But it sounds like I underestimated your knowledge of the subject, and you're better-read and more sophisticated than I. My apologies if I've unintentionally accorded you less respect than you deserve.
 
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jamuki wrote:
Thanks a ton. I did look (maybe not deeply enough) in Thomas Aquinas' works. I am very likely to have not understood him correctly but I never found why faith was needed for salvation. I understood the discussion to be about the nature and characteristics of faith, not why it was need for salvation.

1) Because it is an axiomatic assertion that you have to accept or reject for any of the rest of it to work. "Faith" and "salvation" are being defined in relation to one another, and will lack meaning without that relationship.

As a related example: an assertion that "air" is required for "breathing", or that "liquids" are "wet". It's inherently circular logic. The two terms are defining one another to a significant degree, especially because there are no ironclad definitions from the outside as to what exactly does-and-does-not constitute "air" and what exactly does-and-does-not constitute "breathing" ("liquid" has a firm material definition in molecular dynamics, but "wetness" is imprecise as anything). You can say that You'll Know Them When You See Them, or you can get into pedantic arguments about there not being any fundamental material reality behind the categorical concepts of "air" and "breathing" and "wetness". Regardless, you either buy into the concepts of "air" and "breathing" and "wetness" and you build on them ... or you don't buy into them and you don't build on them.

So: "salvation" is being defined, in part, as being in a state of "Faith in the Eternal". Take it or leave it.

2) "Salvation" is being asserted as a more-perfect state that you, as an imperfect being far short of the Eternal, simply Can Not Properly Grasp. No matter how hard you try, you Can Not and you Will Not actually properly keep all parts of the ethical law of the Eternal, to the highest possible standards, by your own efforts alone, either in this world or in any world to come. And that does not even begin to address the internal conscious reality of constantly orienting your thoughts and hopes toward the Eternal. You simply are not up to the challenge, left solely to your own devices.

If God/Brahma/The-Eternal does not provide you with some kind of a system/covenant to fundamentally forgive you for your inevitable mistakes and to provide you help From Beyond over the course of Eternity, you simply Never Will Be Able to bootstrap yourself into salvation. Salvation is tautologically-defined as something more perfect than you can ever be by yourself.

3) The Top Ten Commandments straight-up demand Faith to achieve salvation, if you are going for any Jewish or Christian or Baha'i religion (and most varieties of Islam as well). Depending on how one numbers them, the top of the Decalogue goes roughly:

I. God exists and is your Lord. (axiomatic assertion, take or leave)
II. Worship nothing else. (direct logical consequence of #1)
III. Do not carry God's name vainly (aka don't blame something ungodly that you do on God, falsely saying God wanted you to do it ... also don't falsely claim to wield God's power as a blessing/curse ... both a direct logical consequence of #1)

If the Eternal meaningfully exists in a direct relationship with you (a statement that can neither be proven nor disproven, only taken on Faith), then obviously the Eternal is inherently your superior. That granted, obviously nothing else other than the Eternal deserves your worship, and obviously worshipping anything else other than the Eternal will lead you astray, and obviously "crediting" the Eternal for your own stupid mistakes will lead you even further astray, and obviously "crediting" the Eternal for your stupid mistakes will make others think that the Eternal wants people to make stupid mistakes and thus lead THEM astray, and obviously trying to "wield" the full power of the Eternal for your own purposes is going to be a stupid mistake.

Everything flows logically once the initial axiomatic assertion is accepted ... but like any such axiomatic assertion (such as Science's shared axioms about "your senses give you at least some meaningful information about Truths of reality" and "reality exists" and "reason can reveal Truths about reality"), you have to accept the axiomatic assertions on Faith alone. There is no way to prove them or disprove them.

Thus, logically, only by having Faith in the existence of the Eternal does it become obvious and logical that one should accept the Lordship of the Eternal, that one shouldn't worship anything else other than the Eternal, and that one should not falsely claim to speak on behalf of or otherwise represent the Eternal.

Yes, it's tautological, but it is also logically self-consistent if (and only if) you have faith that the axiomatic assertion is a Truth. Just like the unprovable axioms of Science.
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The Christian faith emphasizes "free will" is absolutely central to, well, everything. There is nothing good without free will. Love is impossible without choice. Honor impossible without choice. Creating beauty is impossible without consciousness and acts of will.

Faith, making that leap beyond material empiricism is tapping into a very real capacity within ourselves, but it takes stepping outside the dogma, doctrine and instincts of this mortal coil to truly take hold. You are connecting with something very real and you know you are. But it takes this capacity to both make that leap and to know you have done it.

And again, involves choice. An act of free will.

God is not going to force Himself on you. But is forever reaching out to you.
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whac3 wrote:
VikingBerserker wrote:
There can be no figure more important in this discussion than Jesus. His background was the Torah initially.

Catholics also appreciate the writings of Saint Thomas Aquinas.

While that is the Christian tradition, as a Jew I must say that it's just flat wrong.
What's flat wrong? That Jesus had a background in the Torah? He quotes it in almost every challenge. I don't know how you could say it's "flat wrong".
 
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ironcates wrote:
…I don't know how you could say it's "flat wrong".

I once asked a Russian friend of mine what he thought of the novel by Jules Verne Michel Strogoff. He said that he just could not suspend his disbelief enoguh to read it because although Strogoff is supposed to be Russian he in no way thinks, talks, nor acts like a Russian but rather as a Frnchman; indeed the only thing supporting the claim that Strogoff is Russian in the author's asertion of it. I have a similar reaction when I try to read about J in the Christians' NT. J is as Jewish as Strogoff is Russian.
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fāTH/Submit
noun
1. complete trust or confidence in someone or something.
"this restores one's faith in politicians"
synonyms: trust, belief, confidence, conviction; More
2. strong belief in God or in the doctrines of a religion, based on spiritual apprehension rather than proof.
synonyms: religion, church, sect, denomination, (religious) persuasion, (religious) belief, ideology, creed, teaching, doctrine
"she gave her life for her faith"


Sums it up dogma free.
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whac3 wrote:
ironcates wrote:
…I don't know how you could say it's "flat wrong".

I once asked a Russian friend of mine what he thought of the novel by Jules Verne Michel Strogoff. He said that he just could not suspend his disbelief enoguh to read it because although Strogoff is supposed to be Russian he in no way thinks, talks, nor acts like a Russian but rather as a Frnchman; indeed the only thing supporting the claim that Strogoff is Russian in the author's asertion of it. I have a similar reaction when I try to read about J in the Christians' NT. J is as Jewish as Strogoff is Russian.

He's not a 21st century Jew. He's a 1st century Jew. So, I see how you might be confused.

The NT was not written by a priest at the Vatican in Latin.

Edit: Granted the authors Luke and possibly Mark were not Jewish. John wrote later in life with a more unique perspective. Matthew was certainly Jewish and it comes through in his gospel.
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ironcates wrote:
whac3 wrote:
ironcates wrote:
…I don't know how you could say it's "flat wrong".

I once asked a Russian friend of mine what he thought of the novel by Jules Verne Michel Strogoff. He said that he just could not suspend his disbelief enoguh to read it because although Strogoff is supposed to be Russian he in no way thinks, talks, nor acts like a Russian but rather as a Frnchman; indeed the only thing supporting the claim that Strogoff is Russian in the author's asertion of it. I have a similar reaction when I try to read about J in the Christians' NT. J is as Jewish as Strogoff is Russian.

He's not a 21st century Jew. He's a 1st century Jew. So, I see how you might be confused.

The NT was not written by a priest at the Vatican in Latin.

Edit: Granted the authors Luke and possibly Mark were not Jewish. John wrote later in life with a more unique perspective. Matthew was certainly Jewish and it comes through in his gospel.

I started as a Classicist and I've studied ancient history of more ancient peoples than you've likely heard of. I'm not the one confused.
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whac3 wrote:
ironcates wrote:
…I don't know how you could say it's "flat wrong".

I once asked a Russian friend of mine what he thought of the novel by Jules Verne Michel Strogoff. He said that he just could not suspend his disbelief enoguh to read it because although Strogoff is supposed to be Russian he in no way thinks, talks, nor acts like a Russian but rather as a Frnchman; indeed the only thing supporting the claim that Strogoff is Russian in the author's asertion of it. I have a similar reaction when I try to read about J in the Christians' NT. J is as Jewish as Strogoff is Russian.

Oh, come on. Jesus was kind of a momma's boy who grew up to go into his father's business. How more Jewish can you get?

laughlaughlaugh
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ironcates wrote:


The NT was not written by a priest at the Vatican in Latin.


No, it was written by a bunch of Greeks in what would become the Byzantine Empire, which is why, theologically, Christianity is way more Greek/neo-Platonic than it is Jewish.

People are gonna be mad at that, but ask yourself "Who was super big on supernatural beings begetting awesome demigods that walk among us? Is that something you find in the Greek tradition, or in Judaism?"
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