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They believe their son, whom they love dearly, is going to be tortured forever. They’re upset that I reject their way of life as both deluded was a Christian. And let’s say this information came from a very reliable source, so that you this was going to happen. Would you just mention this to your friends and family in passing, and send them the occasional tract with information on the threat of the Nazis? Maybe you would drive out there and try to convince them of the threat until you were blue in the face. I know if would do some pretty drastic things to save my friends and family.
Sure, they’re upset that their son has rejected most of the values and “truths” they tried to instill in me. The Nazis were going take everybody off to concentration camps in chains, and possibly kill them.
I don’t think there is an elegant answer to such questions, most people simply aren’t reflective enough to even attempt to find incoherencies in their views. Another simple example to Christians (you can answer these questions to yourself): Would you ever masturbate if someone was watching you? Something is different and it’s seems as though it is different in a way they are unwilling to directly address, because it impacts the debatescape significantly.
Ben Lorkas, Yeah, but Jesus has to watch *everything,* including everything going on in his unlimited imagination which includes you masturbating even if you never actually did.
Ben believe that abortion is murder, why do so many of them choose to protest peacefully and non-violently?
One way to deal with this may be to adopt the deontological stance of considering certain actions intrinsically evil (as in Catholicism), but in that case you can’t justify the death penalty or even basic stuff like self-defense. I know that when I was a Christian, my answers were no, yes, yes. Perhaps I didn’t I think Alex gives a better example, since if Pro-choicers really were accessories to murdering say, teenagers, there’d be no way they’d react the same way. How could you even stand to hold a debate with pro-choice people if that’s really what it means in moral terms?
Also, your parents can tell themselves that maybe you’ll come around and that your current doubts are all part of God’s master plan.
I think the answer to the question you posed is yes, Christians really believe. Seems to me there is only so much they and other Christians can do (didn’t even the Apostles shake off their sandals if their message wasn’t heard and accepted? Should some react in a greater capacity than they have?
So why aren’t they frantic, as they should be, if God is going to torture the vast majority of humankind forever for not loving Him? they don’t seem upset that their beloved son will be tortured forever in hell. Absolutely, with respect to this I agree with your article.
Jesus said, “no one comes to me unless the Father draws him.” Salvation is not a matter of convincing someone about an intellectual issue; it’s about responding to the direct call of God.
And, for the record, I personally don’t believe that it is God’s decision that people are excluded from “heaven,” as it were; I think it’s the individual’s choice.
As best we can tell, humans always act so as to fulfill the strongest of their current desires, given their beliefs.