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thomas t

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About thomas t

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    Senior Member
  • Birthday 04/20/1980

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    Bamberg, Germany
  • Interests
    discussing faith with doubters; music

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  1. Hi Dr, that's quite a generalizing remark, I think. We can't look into their hearts, in my opinion. If you want to shut the doors of the church, then it seems this is contemptful behaviour. if they really say something against our faith, we still can speak up. If we judge them, then we will be judged, listen please to what brother Tzephanyahu says (my interpretation of the verse): thank you very much for your bold interaction, Tzephanyahu. Free speech, as you say, is too important. Regards, Thomas --- Hi Neighbor, I think this is condescending against atheists. Regards, Thomas
  2. Dear community, non-believers can't post in the main sections. They are assigned a seperate section. I don't know where that section is. To me, assigning them some invisible seperate section comes across as wanting to serve them lunch below the table. At the same time, we sit at the table enjoying our meal conversing with each other, i find this is horrible. Making them invisible is the same as ostracising them. But I do think that George is spirit-led when he dicides that way. I believe him when he says it's better for them to be seperated from the rest. So let's think about why the Holy Spirit might tell him to resort to such a measure. I think this might be because conditions for the non-believing side within the main sections would be so incredibly bad that it appears better to shut them out altogether. Maybe, while sitting at the table to stay in the picture, the others would behave in a manner that's even more rude than having them sit under the table. So please let's have a look at how we treat provocative quetsions in general. For asking provocative questions is exactly what non-believers do all the time. In another thread someone asked a question that somehow managed to combine the notion of God and rape & murder in one sentence! Then I saw one lady answering this by "I feel offended!" (or some similar answer). But it wasn't anything like a statement that frankly stated that God was responsible for that. It simply was a question. Telling the inquirer "I feel offended" (or something similar) in this situation came across as wanting to shut him up, I think. Others gave what I would call a one-size-fits-all-answer, subsequetly declaring that his question has been answered "in full", although the question was complicated in my understanding. Also a means of shutting the inquirer up? Now, this is my point: if we reply to provocative questions in this manner, inviting non-believer to the main sections again would be devastating. Even more than the current situation is (I think it's devastating). We must have freedom of speech, even for the non-believing side, I think. Please let's do something so the Holy Spirit could finally tell George to open the sections up for non-believers. Regards, Thomas
  3. Hi De Maria, great post, all you wrote is true. Just a few comments. I agree. When someone calls a child mentally ill, then this goes against the father, too. In my case the conflict had still another connotation, as both my mother and I claim to be Christians. Paul says: But now I am writing to you not to associate with anyone who bears the name of brother if he is guilty of sexual immorality or greed, or is an idolater, reviler, drunkard, or swindlerโ€”not even to eat with such a one. 1. Cor 5:11 My mother committed slander talk and also called me other sorts of names. I don't want to take it to the personal level calling her a reviler in return. Maybe she still is a wonderful lady just having made mistakes at that occasion. But I thought it's best to end contact with her back then and be on the safe side. Unfortunately, she has spread her opinion about me being ostensibly insane towards third parties also. She neither apologized nor distanced herself from what was being said. Regards, Thomas
  4. Hi Believer, thank you for posting this. But personaIly, I don't feel represented by that picture as I don't base my faith on mineralised animal bones. When I think of 'great evidence' for the creator, I'd rather pick creation as a whole. Please note, biblcal writers didn't have any bones to bolster their faith. I also don't feel represented by the depicted guy because this one is not beautiful enough (just kidding ๐Ÿ˜‰). Over the years, discussions with atheists most took the form as outlined above in the picture. George thinks it's more effective to ban atheists from posting in the main sections, if I get him right. He has reserved a special section for them, I don't where that one is. In my understanding, this means that discussions in the main sections that followed the that pattern used to be so utterly weak that maybe noone came to believe in God through these sorts of discussions. George certainly has a good overview of how many people converted after having had a debate similar to the one the picture is about. But just in order to bring more people to believe, he paid a huge price, I think. So please let's think about why these discussions were so bad apparently. If I remember right: all these discussions were started by believers. But I think it's best to react to the non-believing side. Let them explain first why they can't believe and answer then. In case it's really because of the evidence seen in the fossile record... we are to respond. Then. The response may of course take the form outlined above. Each apologist has their own style, I think. Many like to challenge the views of non-believers more directly even using their own resource pages. Others, such as myself, prefer to write less with the intention of merely adressing their doubts seeking to dispel any of them. Sometimes these discussions used to start off by another group, so called evolutionist theists, who challenged the views of the rest. Then, often the non-believers joined. This all, apperently, hasn't been fruitful though. I hope it will get better in the future. Regards, Thomas
  5. Hi Tzephanyahu, again you make so many good points: we can say our opinion. When there a racists in town, I for one used to participate in rallies against them every once in a while. There is also God-related enmity that, in my opinion, can be compared to racism in a sense. So we can rally for God, too. Even if it's prophesied. Maybe it was not the time for this... let's try to convince doubters here through arguments, first. I never know why they doubt so, as you say when you wonder about motives, I treat them with respect. Amen. Thomas
  6. Hi Tzephanyahu, thank you very much for your thoughtful reply. it is my personal impression that real detractors are rare. Foremost it is the scholars of the mainline churches, at least here in Germany. They say they aren't anti-God, but then they come up saying that science and mordern research - they call it biblical research - would disprove part of what Bible says. At least this is how I understand them. Then, in my opinion, we should speak up. These are real detractors I think. The seconed group are the ones like Richard Dawkins, atheists that go beyond the simple truth that they don't belive in God. They say that, according to them, there is no God. But, my friends, for example, they just happen to not believe in God and always used to make fun of my belief system after my conversion. But as long as they just make jokes about what I believe and about some habits the faithful have... no problem, I think. However, when they make fun of the very person presented as God by the Bible, this is dangerous I think. Then they "cross a threashold" and we should speak up again. Same applies when Christianity as a whole is ridiculed, I think. If you have time, see this post please, which is also about dealing with that. I really thank God to have found a person with such an interest for apologetics. Great! Thomas
  7. Hi Jos, Amen. Hi Shortangel, Oh I mean women in leadership roles. Women like Deborah - Judges 4:4 - and Miriam in Exodus 15:20. Thomas
  8. this is getting too personal, I think, please don't discuss me as a person. Thanks, this is a great place for debating topics, I think. Thomas
  9. Hi Tzephanyahu, thank you for your very encouraging post. Yeah, go ahead with your website! Let me quick write something about the debates. there are detractors, that's for sure. But I never know the intentions of the ones asking. Let me give you an example: before I converted, I friend of mine said religion only satisfied the needs of the faithful and everything was made up. According to him. Is this mocking? After my conversion, I told the same friend about it, and he said "congrats!". If he would be a real detractor he wouldn't have said so, I think, as the conversion is the heart of the walk in Christ, as I see it. However his argument can be used as mocking. Even if a discussion partner appears to be a scoffer for some, I generally try to resond on the subject level. There are also many silent readers who could have the same argument in their minds without having any bad intentions. I really appreciate you accepting different methods of defending the Gospel, as it should be, Regards, Thomas
  10. Hi community, in another thread, a poster seemed to have a problem with alpha females at church. But when we read Gal 3:28 about the Kingdom of God... ... we find out that, in the kingdom of God, women are like men. According to my own interpretation. So some alpha females at work is what we should expect when we see there are alpha males also. Wouldn't you think so? I feel even tempted to think alpha women yes please. Since they do the work. We need people who fortify the weak, strengthen the family unit, edify the newbies in faith, settle conflicts, feed the hungry in a spiritual sense, edify the fellowship between believers, go after the lost and much more. Men can't do that alone. Please note I'm not talking about women's role in wedlock. This post is solely about their role at church/within the kingdom of God. Regards, Thomas
  11. Hi Tzephanyahu, thank you very much for all your work and great passion for apologetics, I'm convinced we need people like you. As you go into great detail on your site... I think your approach is great. It's a great approach, making them rethink what they say. Just for reasons of not having much time I permitted myself to not go through the details presented on your page... If non-believers claim things disproved the Bible, then the onus is on them and I try to show that their arguments do not stand to reason, in my opinion. Normally I try to let the Bible speak so they come to faith, I suppose. So faith comes from hearing, and hearing through the word of Christ Romans 10:17. As you say, we shouldn't be circular in reasoning, but a nice Bible verse here and there...๐Ÿ™‚ --- For some this may have sounded off-topic. But I think it does fit the title. The more we speak to non-believers in a good manner the more we show God is interested in everyone. He lets his sun shine for everyone. I'm very much looking forward to seeing some apologetics from your part. God loves everyone, so we should speak to everyone and be open to everyone. Have a good Sunday, Thomas
  12. Hi Tzephanyahu again, yeah it's nice to read your words, this is certainly how it should look like. I personally started to believe in God because I didn't have anything else to believe in: Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 5:3. Poor, yeah that's me ๐Ÿ˜€. yeah, why not. They're not unintelligent, however... so I certainly need to give my best.. That seems certainly to be the best way. I'll surely look up your site. Best Regards, Thomas
  13. Hi Tzephanyahu, thank you very much for your very intelligent words (well, I think they were). This promts a few thoughts on my part: I think there is a biblical safety zone: the Bible mentions extra-bibical proof for God once only (my interpretation. I'm only counting proof as found in nature). Romans 1:20. In my reading this is nature as a whole. When you say there is more, then you leave what Bible counts as evidence. Doesn't mean the evidence is bound to be flawed. I just don't have any calling to lead a discussion with non-believers that started off by believers telling there's evidence for the flood or creation (as opposed to evolution) or whatever. Bible says there's proof for God in nature. And that's where the presentation of proof in the Bible ended according to my interpretation. So if a discussion starts off with AnswersInGenesis or any related resource pages, I'm out. That doesn't mean that I think it's bound to be wrong what they say. No, AnswersInGenesis - or any similar ones - is simply not Bible. So even if this kind of discussions go wrong for the Christian side, I won't try to sort that out. I want to stay in what I would call the biblical comfort zone for discussion. one atheist currently can't post, she said, I sent her a PM. Regards, Thomas
  14. Hi Tzephanyahu, great analysis here: Sometimes, a simple "repent!" is added.๐Ÿ™„ But when it comes to debating science, for instance, non-believers are not unintelligent. As Jesus announced (Luke 16:8 KJV): And the lord commended the unjust steward, because he had done wisely: for the children of this world are in their generation wiser than the children of light. Non-believers inform their Christian counterparts about the facts more often than vice versa, if I get it right.๐Ÿ˜ฎ Regards, Thomas
  15. Hi Who me, very interesting answer again. You nailed it, I'm afraid. The amount of insults stemming from the Christian side against inquirers only indicates that, currently, we as Christians can't bear our faith getting scrutinized, I would say. Regards, Thomas
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