Why do Unbelievers LARP as Christians?

John Shelby Spong basically said we need to rethink theism, original sin isn't real, the divinity of Christ isn't real, the new Testament miracles aren't real, the resurrection isn't real, the cross being sacrifice as our sins is barbaric and not real, and the list goes on.

Here William Lane Craig is debating him on the resurrection and he's taking the atheistic stance that it didn't happen.

what was the point of his whole LARP as an Episcopal bishop?

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  1. 3 weeks ago
    Anonymous

    >Evangelical can only think in the most literal manner in the universe

    • 3 weeks ago
      Anonymous

      It's not just evangelicals that are against his way of thinking. William Lane Craig trounced him in debate. If Jesus never resurrected, there were no miracles, Jesus wasn't God, and the crucifixion wasn't necessary, why even be that religion?

    • 3 weeks ago
      Anonymous

      It’s like if a Soviet Premier proclaimed Marxism is fundamentally wrong, and we should all embrace free markets.

  2. 3 weeks ago
    Anonymous

    Bump can anyone answer?

    • 3 weeks ago
      Anonymous

      I tried writing up a huge post for you OP but I realised you're opening up too big of discussion to really be entered upon here. You're bringing up profound events in human history/evolution and the progress of knowledge. Let it just be said that Spong's point of view is extremely shallow and already obsolete by the standards of current scholarship, but despite that there is a tragic sense in which he's right and his fundamentalist interlocutor is wrong, namely, that we can't just carry on with medieval religion as if the scientific revolution never happened. That really is nonsense. However, Spong's "solution" merely concedes too much to a metanarrarive the scientific revolution (or rather, to a certain materialistic interpretation of it) that postmodern research rejects. If Spong's position was right, religion really would be hollowed out as a mere external form of social culture and moral discipline, but muddle-headed thinkers like him were unwilling to abandon religion totally as their materialistic scientism would inevitably lead to complete moral collapse, to nihilism, and they were unwilling to go that far (in a way it is a kind of intellectual cowardice, but it's born more out of confusion than mere idiocy).

      • 3 weeks ago
        Anonymous

        Instead of writing up the long post I was trying, I'll just refer you to two thinkers who managed, in their own ways, to cut through the Gordian Knot of the science vs religion debate, and understood how to progress both science & religion together in a future postmodern context, which denigrates neither one and doesn't lead to shallow thinking, either of the religious fundamentalist variety or the variety of Spong and his more atheistic siblings.

        The first is Shin'ichi Hisamatsu who grew up a devout Buddhist in Japan, became a monk as well as being part of the Kyoto School of Japanese intellectuala who engaged with modern western thought, lost his faith through acquaintance with western reason, but later regained his faith yet in a more contemporary form that didn't depend on medieval dogmas.
        http://www.fas.x0.com/writings/hisamatsu/currenttask.html
        http://www.fas.x0.com/writings/hisamatsu/atheisme.html
        http://www.fas.x0.com/writings/hisamatsu/intervwbywatanabee.html
        http://www.fas.x0.com/index/articlee.html

        The second is Rudolf Steiner, who founded the Anthroposophical movement which directly reconciles the scientific method with religion in the form of "spiritual science". I'll only post one of his lecture transcript ms here where he talks about this phenomenon of modern materialist Christianity, like Spong's, and the need to think past it.
        https://rsarchive.org/Lectures/GA069c/English/Singles/19111004p01.html

      • 3 weeks ago
        Anonymous

        It's a testament to how good the story of Christian is (the best, even Buddhism is only the second-best) that those who are enamored with lies would want to associate themselves with the truth.

        >that we can't just carry on with medieval religion as if the scientific revolution never happened
        Keep writing paragraphs of cope to pretend you're not an atheistic nihilist lol, it's amusing. The way you wrote "tragic sense" reads like a desperate cry for help. Very sad.
        >That really is nonsense
        No. You are a madman.

        • 3 weeks ago
          Anonymous

          >Keep writing paragraphs of cope to pretend you're not an atheistic nihilist lol
          I'm a Christian. I believe in Christ and the Resurrection and the Virgin Birth. It's just that I understand these things positively and I'm convinced they can all be reconciled with modern science wants it gets its head out of its materialist ass. I sympathise with the fundamentalism of Craig too. I think the whole disagreement ("science vs religion", "faith vs reason") is tragic and shortsighted, and in the future it will be overcome.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            How vague. Why does the Resurrection need to be reconciled with modern science? Science won't tell us whether it happened or not, so we need to acknowledge it's useless in this field and move on.

            The problem with your view is that it sets up two separate areas of knowledge which act independently from one another, the "religious" and the "scientific". This is straying dangerously close to the "double truth" idea that there are two fundamentally different kinds of truth depending on whether you're talking religion or philosophy/science. The medieval Christians rightly rejected this as nonsense while the Muslims sadly embraced it. The Christians said truth is one and unified, and that's how they gave birth to modern science. The problem is modern science retroactively undermines certain parts of the intellectual worldview of the middle ages. What is needed is not a double truth where religion says, "haha science, you can't advance in to this area of knowledge, we're beyond you here", but rather a full reconciliation and interpenetration of scientific truth/method and religious truth/method, so they become one and unified again.

            What is needed is a complete subordination of science to religion and the realization that it is quite irrelevant and has scarcely benefited mankind at all. It has occasionally given some interesting insight in certain fields, but it's not really important.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            >Why does the Resurrection need to be reconciled with modern science?
            I don't mean "testing if it really happened." That presupposes a materialist point of view..The fact is we know the resurrection has happened/is happening in some sense or other, because people have had experiences of it (I had a profound Resurrection experience myself one Easter morning). The point of reconciling it with science isn't to treat it like an object of doubt or a mere intellectual hypothesis that may or may not be true, which would be offensive to faith and religion... but to go deep into the phenomenon itself and penetrate its full scope and meaning. The Church fathers did this when they wrote theological and mystical tracts in the Resurrection. The point is to do basically the exact same thing with a scientific mindset.

            https://i.imgur.com/EyDjNlX.png

            No. You are deeply mistaken, Steiner's approach lead him to taking every delusion he experienced as fact. That is not how you deal with metaphysical matters.

            >quote
            Is that from an Eastern Orthodox monk? That's what it sounds like. In any case, I agree with the quote itself. By a spiritually scientific account I don't mean subjecting religious truth or religion itself to a kind of arrogant probing, or a proud methodical doubt in the sense of "I won't believe ant of it until it appears to me to my satisfaction." What I mean is, having already accepted the phenomenon as valid, trying to understand it from within in an integral, cosmic way that would satisfy both the scientific and religious minds. Done rightly I think this involves a humble approach which is entirely in accordance with real faith.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            cont.

            basically, what I'm saying is we need to do for religion what the likes of Copernicus did for the stars / astronomy. Everyone accepts that the stars are real, but before Copernicus there was a certain mythological framework by which the stars we see were viewed, and after Copernicus the stars are now seen in a new light from a more empirical perspective. Likewise, the phenomena of religion are just as real and valid as the phenomena of the stars (this is what the materialists dogmatically refuse to understand), but they are also understood in a kind of prescientific framework that isn't necessary for the experience of the phenomena themselves, and increasingly the ancient and medieval frameworks (which modern fundamentalism is trying to preserve) are more and more an obstacle than a gateway to our experience of faith / the truths of religion.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            I'm Christian myself, but the reason why people say that Christianity is incompatible with science is because it is rooted in anti-intellectualism. They won't say it to new converts, but over time you'll see Christians tell you to completely distrust universities, scientists, and researchers in favor of blindly trusting churches, right-wing politicians, and apologists. Secular institutions aren't perfect, but they have safeguards and they admit error over time.

            Anecdotally, in online Christian circles, I see other Christians actively attack STEM majors and claim that they are practicing satanists based on articles that they have seen on conspiracy theorist sites. They're at a point where they claim that dinosaurs aren't real and are actually demons. They very often deny the documented research stuff in front of them in favor of amorphous stuff that can't be proven. I do not hear the same sentiment in non-Christian circles.

            If you read the writings of many early saints or church founders, then you'll notice that they claimed that mathematics were demonic because Pagans used it for astrology. In contrast, Islam embraced mathematics and the majority of our math came from them as a result. Ever wonder why we don't use Roman numerals? If you want to understand further, the Darkening Age by Catherine Nixey goes in depth about early Christians actively sought to destroy research, art, and intellectuals. It's opinionated, but she has cited her sources extensively. The book in pic related is a different book made by Catholics called "The Father's Know Best" by Jimmy Akin.

            It'll fall on deaf ears because I'm likely not talking with reasonable people who want to understand why the status quo is the way it is, but people who actively think that they're getting cursed or blessed for defending Christianity or not. You're free to insult me like many do, but I won't be impressed.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            >Christianity is rooted in anti-intellectualism

            mfw Bob and Karen from the Cowboy baptist church are your entire understanding of Christian intellectualism. Orthobors make fun of Catholics all the time because of our autistic devotion to legalism in how we think of theology. This has trickled down into actual intellectualism. The Catholic Church created the university system as we know it. Many of the greatest intellectuals of all time were Christian and studied science as a devotion to fully understanding God's creation, like how Catholic theologians were dedicated to fully understanding what is and isn't theologically correct. FOH with that protestant bullshit.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            I've seen Catholics blame it on the Protestants, and Orthobros blame it on the Catholics, but the fundamental problem is with Christians in general. The anti-intellectuallism didn't begin with BIlly Bob of the Cletus Church, it began with early Christians who destroyed research and art along with killing off non-Christian academics like Hypatia.

            If you've read their writings, you'd think that they're a Protestant caricature written by leftists who hate their parents, but nope they're actually revered early Orthodox/Catholic saints. It's probably based to you, but I fully get why people don't like it nowadays

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            >it began with early Christians who destroyed research and art along with killing off non-Christian academics like Hypatia.
            Already debunked:
            https://historyforatheists.com/2020/07/the-great-myths-9-hypatia-of-alexandria/
            https://talesoftimesforgotten.com/2018/08/06/who-was-hypatia-of-alexandria-really/

            Also stop pretending you're a Christian, it's embarrasing.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            It's called the "Athens and Jerusalem" controversy, made famous by the early Christian writer Tertullian who famously asked, "What does Athens (philosophy, reason) have to do with Jerusalem (faith, religion)?" He is also famous for saying he believed not despite its being absurd, but because it is absurd.

            This is indeed a genuinely anti-intellectual position. However, Tertullian was an almost complete outlier among the Church fathers, who set out precisely to reconcile Athenian philosophy / Hellenic civilisation with the new faith. Likewise, the medieval scholastics took a highly positive approach to intellectual pursuits and did their best to reconcile faith with the science as they knew it (Aristotle).

            The anti-intellectual approach of Tertullian was arguably revived somewhat at the time of the Protestant reformation, but that itself is a somewhat superficial view. The Protestant reformers were largely humanists and scholars, but they wanted to better define that aspect of faith which is genuinely beyond human comprehension, to prevent religion from collapsing into mere rationalism, naturalism, and humanism.

            The only other figure I can think of is the Danish philosopher Kierkegaard who like Tertullian spoke of faith as being absurd, but he meant it in a more refined existential than intellectual sense; he was a great intellectual himself and just wanted to protect faith from being hollowed out by the rationalists like Hegel, just as Luther did with the likes of Aristotle and Erasmus.

            The reason why there's so much anti-intellectualism in the American evangelical church today, and in Christians influenced by them is that Christianity in the West has undergone a relentless culture war by dogmatic materialists and secularists, which has left plenty of Christians understandably embittered and jaded. Nevertheless, there are still outstanding Christian intellectuals in our times, including in America.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            >the Darkening Age by Catherine Nixey goes in depth about early Christians actively sought to destroy research, art, and intellectuals. It's opinionated, but she has cited her sources extensively.
            Also debunked:
            https://historyforatheists.com/2017/11/review-catherine-nixey-the-darkening-age/

      • 3 weeks ago
        Anonymous

        The issue is science hasn't proven that resurrection or miracles are impossible. You can't prove them to not exist. You also can't prove that demons aren't real. Science can't prove the supernatural side of life wrong. I agree Sprong does concede too much. What we should focus on is what science can't disprove.

        • 3 weeks ago
          Anonymous

          The problem with your view is that it sets up two separate areas of knowledge which act independently from one another, the "religious" and the "scientific". This is straying dangerously close to the "double truth" idea that there are two fundamentally different kinds of truth depending on whether you're talking religion or philosophy/science. The medieval Christians rightly rejected this as nonsense while the Muslims sadly embraced it. The Christians said truth is one and unified, and that's how they gave birth to modern science. The problem is modern science retroactively undermines certain parts of the intellectual worldview of the middle ages. What is needed is not a double truth where religion says, "haha science, you can't advance in to this area of knowledge, we're beyond you here", but rather a full reconciliation and interpenetration of scientific truth/method and religious truth/method, so they become one and unified again.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            cont.

            How do you do this? It's kind of simple. It's the approach Rudolf Steiner took and I think it's the approach all civilisation will have to take in the future... — it's simply to treat spiritual phenomena as every bit as real and valid for empirical research as material/sense-data phenomena. That's really it. For example, I've had an experience of the Holy Spirit as a Christian. So have countless other Christians down the ages. Anyone who's had an experience like this knows that it's extremely specific and can't just be reduced to "warm fuzzy feelings" you get when you look at a puppy. No, it's a profoundly specific phenomenon with its own phenomenological character/texture.. Therefore, it's a valid topic for empirical research. And so on with every other kind of phenomenon. There have already been scientists doing this kind of research for over a century, but it's generally been banished to an an academic corner because the academic community is dogmatically materialist in large swathes. We just need to recognise that materialism is neither a foundation for nor a conclusion of the scientific method, which postmodern philosophy is already willing to recognise.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            Oh and by an empirical investigation of spiritual phenomena, I don't just mean reducing them to a statistical analysis, or anecdotal reporting, or a reductionist psychoanalysis, etc. I mean treating the spiritual phenomena itself from a spiritual point of view, only empirically so that we try to understand the phenomenon itself on its own terms and from within, without relying so much on medieval dogma or ancient scripture to pre-define the phenomenon for us. This is what science is, relying on the phenomenon itself to tell you about itself, so that you adopt as unbiased a view as you possibly can. I think this kind of investigation of spiritual phenomena is absolutely possible.

          • 3 weeks ago
            Anonymous

            No. You are deeply mistaken, Steiner's approach lead him to taking every delusion he experienced as fact. That is not how you deal with metaphysical matters.

  3. 3 weeks ago
    Anonymous

    Because we live in a post-theist society where people primarily join religions for political/identitarian reasons, not theological ones.

    • 3 weeks ago
      Anonymous

      Including the CEO of Atheism himself, Richard Dawkins.

      • 3 weeks ago
        Anonymous

        You should have posted Ayaan Hirsi Ali instead. The last interview I read with Dawkins he said he still doesn't regret New Atheism and thought religion was a net negative regardless of its effect of society or culture. What's funny is the interviewer was desperately trying to get him to bash New Atheism so he could have a shocking headline yet Dawkins didn't fall for it.

        • 3 weeks ago
          Anonymous

          >The last interview I read with Dawkins he said he still doesn't regret New Atheism and thought religion was a net negative regardless of its effect of society or culture.
          Can't say I'm surprised, he's the same moron who admitted that even if God were to appear right in front of him he'd still not believe and would think it was some kind of hallucination or trick. What a dumbass.

    • 3 weeks ago
      Anonymous

      But that's been the case for as long as there's been a church. Certainly you wouldn't want to oppose the church and be branded a heretic

  4. 3 weeks ago
    Anonymous

    Many such cases

  5. 3 weeks ago
    Anonymous

    People desire the fruits of something but lack the seeds for the tree, so they larp.

  6. 3 weeks ago
    JWanon

    Doesn't sound like a christain tbqh

  7. 3 weeks ago
    Anonymous

    kek at points 11 and 12. Eating our cake are we now?

  8. 3 weeks ago
    Anonymous

    This isn't some atheist take, Jefferson thought that a lot of the stuff in the bible was bullshit. The difference between him and Christians today is that the enlightenment era was taking place back then while Christians today would defend the most asinine thing in the book because of the culture war.

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

    Modern day Christians are worse than the catholic church of Galileo's time because didn't persecute him because of the science but rather politics such as what ended the life of Marcus Tullius Cicero

  9. 3 weeks ago
    Anonymous

    As a Reformed Christian I will simply say that this man does not affirm the basic principles of universal Christianity as codified in the Nicene creed. In no meaningful sense can he be called Christian. He would probably be happier and more honest attending a Unitarian Universalist meeting and professing himself as spiritual but not religious.

    • 3 weeks ago
      Anonymous

      Sure but for some reason people like him really can't let go of Christianity and live as walking contradictions, trying to fit a square into a circle and believe in a "Christianity" devoid of any and all supernatural elements, truly a sad sight to behold, similar to the current state of Judaism.

    • 3 weeks ago
      Anonymous

      >the basic principles of universal Christianity were codified three centuries after Christ
      Garbage

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