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I'm sure am3ricanath3ist is familiar with the Atheists of Silicon Valley website, which includes all sorts of lists of quotes from theists, atheists, the Bible, and many other sources, supporting atheism. The list of Bible Quotes in particular contains a rather interesting selection of verses:

GOD'S QUALITIES (part 1) - 1 John 4:8
God is love.

GOD'S QUALITIES (part 2) - 1 Corinthians 13:4
Love is not jealous.

GOD'S QUALITIES (part 3) - Exodus 20:5
"I, the Lord thy God, am a jealous God."

GOD'S QUALITIES (part 4) AND NAME - Exodus 34:14
For thou shalt worship no other god: for the Lord, whose name is Jealous, is a jealous God.

I just had to plug it. Everyone, check it out. (The "Main Links" link is the place to start, it seems. And they've got Quran resources, too.)


( (void *) comments[20] — Finger the nothingness that underlies everything )
Aug. 17th, 2006 01:38 am (UTC)
I'd be tempted to see what word is being used for 'love' in these passages, though. I mean, the Bible in its original languages uses a buttload of different words and meanings for 'love' (like agape, phileo, ect) that get translated to simply 'love' in the English version.

That's why I liked my roommate's Bible... it had a neat dictionary and concordinance that noted the differences whenever it was approached :)
Aug. 17th, 2006 02:09 am (UTC)
So, what you're saying is that God gets a special kind of jealous love, while we mortals have to settle for the ordinary, non-jealous love. I feel gypped. But then again, God's kind of love appears to be the kind where he condemns us all to burn eternally unless we can bring ourselves to believe what is, on the surface, a monumentally ludicrous proposition and love that idea so much that we comparatively hate everything in the real world. I'm not sure I'd be able to love someone enough to send them to Hell because they dared to apply reason to religion and doubt the prophetic words I asked some guy to carve into stone thousands of years ago. Then again, that's the other reason I'm not God. ^_^
Aug. 17th, 2006 01:16 pm (UTC)
No, I'm not saying that at all :) All I'm saying is that I'm curious to see what kind of love is translated here. I believe it's Aramaic (though I could be mistaken...?) that uses 5 different words for love, each one meaning a different thing. Like brotherly love, self-less love, selfish love, carnal love, ect. I'm merely curious to see what is used in these passages. Then again, some of those passages listed are in Hebrew, so I'm not sure if the translation would be the same.... that just makes me even more curious ;)
Aug. 17th, 2006 02:32 pm (UTC)
Yep. I know. It's just that playing the Devil's advocate is a bit more literal when it's in the Biblical context. Tonight, I get to watch the P&T Bullshit episode about the Bible again. Always fun.
Aug. 17th, 2006 02:34 pm (UTC)
Aug. 17th, 2006 03:22 pm (UTC)
Penn & Teller. It's a Showtime show with two seasons out on DVD and the third coming soon. They interview experts about various topics and dispel a lot of bullshit beliefs that people have... about things like smoking, recycling, "new age", the Bible, "Intelligent Design", diets, and so much more.
Aug. 17th, 2006 03:50 pm (UTC)
Ah :)
Aug. 17th, 2006 05:26 pm (UTC)
It's interesting to note that the Greek word used in I Corinthians 13:4 "zeloo" can have different meanings in English. Usually it is translated "envy" in this verse, though perhaps "covet" would be accurate as well. In other applications it can mean "zeal", a very different word indeed, or "warmth of feeling for or against". Just as in English, a word should never be taken out of context.

The word used in Exodus is qannow, and always means jealous. I think the Bible demonstrates to us that it is ok for a husband to have jealousy if his wife in unfaithful, but he should not be coveting or envying the possessions of others. Covet and envy have more of an illegal sense, in that one desires what belongs to someone else. God desires what belongs to him.

Also, for the record, I am Christian and I do not believe that anyone (other than Satan) burns for eternity in Hell. We believe there is a first resurrection of the saints (those called and diligently seeking God), followed by 1000 years of rest for the earth, then the resurrection of the rest of the world (the deceived). These people will then be taught the truth, with Christ as King of kings on earth, for a period of time (possibly 100 years, though this is speculation). If they are still defiant of living God's way of life after that period of time, and are not found written in the Book of Life at the Great White Throne Judgment, they are thrown into the Lake of Fire and burned up. The end. No more. God is both loving and merciful, and willing that none should perish, so it is my belief that this will be the fate of few.
Aug. 17th, 2006 05:48 pm (UTC)
So... "love never has warmth of feeling for or against"? Doesn't sound much like love to me.

There was an entire section of quotes from Jesus himself stating that sinners would burn in Hell.

JESUS ON HELL (part 1) & SELF MUTILATION - Matthew 5:29-30 [OUCH!]
"And if thy right eye offend thee, pluck it out, and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell. And if thy right hand offend thee, cut it off and cast it from thee: for it is profitable for thee that one of thy members should perish, and not that thy whole body should be cast into hell."

JESUS ON HELL (part 2) & SELF MUTILATION - Mark 9:43-48 [OUCH!]
"If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life maimed than with two hands to go into hell, where the fire never goes out. And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than to have two feet and be thrown into hell. And if your eye causes you to sin, pluck it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than to have two eyes and be thrown into hell, where 'their worm does not die, and the fire is not quenched.'

JESUS ON HELL (part 3) - Matthew 13:41-42
"The Son of Man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather out of his kingdom all things that offend, and them which do iniquity. And shall cast them into a furnace of fire; there shall be a wailing and gnashing of teeth."

JESUS ON HELL (part 4) - Matthew 13:49-50
"So it shall be at the end of the world; the angels shall come forth, and sever the wicked from among the just. And shall cast them into the furnace of fire; there shall be a wailing and gnashing of teeth."

JESUS ON HELL (part 5) - Matthew 25:41
"Then he will say to those on his left, 'Depart from me, you who are cursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels."

JESUS ON HELL (part 6) & BLASPHEMY - Matthew 12:32
"Whosoever speaketh against the Holy Ghost, it shall not be forgiven him, neither in this world, neither in the world to come."

JESUS ON HELL (part 7) & BLASPHEMY - Mark 3:28-29
"I tell you the truth, all the sins and blasphemies of men will be forgiven them. But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven; he is guilty of an eternal sin."

JESUS ON HELL (part 8) - Revelation 21:8
"But the cowardly, the unbelieving, the vile, the murderers, the sexually immoral, those who practice magic arts, the idolaters and all liars — their place will be in the fiery lake of burning sulfur. This is the second death."

"Where their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched" sounds pretty eternal to me. And blasphemy is an eternal sin that will never be forgiven... 1100 years is a lot shorter than eternity.

I still say that if God is willing that none should perish, why doesn't he make it so?
Aug. 18th, 2006 02:34 am (UTC)
I believe that you don't actually want to understand what these verses are saying, but just like to argue, and your opinion will remain unchanged, as will mine. . . and thus the Bible tells me that I should not strive and contend with you. I will only say that you have many preconceived ideas and notions in your head while reading them, and that plays with your "interpretation".
Have a nice day.
Aug. 18th, 2006 10:27 am (UTC)
Try me. I like to think I'm pretty open when it comes to matters of Biblical interpretation, and the fact that you won't try only tells me that you probably CAN'T make sense out of them. I know faith is impossible to touch, but logic isn't. That's why I stick with logic. If you can find a way to make this stuff make sense, I'll go along with it.

So, what's YOUR "interpretation"?
Aug. 18th, 2006 06:17 pm (UTC)
Funny, but I knew you would say that.
But did you expect me to say, "Wow! I never knew those verses were there before!" If I couldn't explain them, I would have no right to believe what I believe.

Re: The Self-Mutilation part - This is a "spirit of the law" vs. "letter of the law" issue, and isn't a part of the conversation at hand. If you wish for me to explain this separately, I will. For now, I'll stick with the hell issue.

Three different Greek words are translated as "hell" in the English-language New Testament, and each describes something different. Tartaroo is only used once, in 2 Peter 2:4, and refers to a place of restraint for demon spirits. Hades, which means "the grave," is frequently used to describe the abode of the dead until the resurrection. Hades is never used to describe a place of future punishment. Another Greek word, however, commonly rendered "hell," does refer to a place where the wicked are punished by death. This is Gehenna, and takes its name from the Valley of Hinnom outside Jerusalem, where the bodies of criminals were commonly burned along with refuse and dead animals. Christ used this location, familiar to all of His listeners, to describe the burning up of the incorrigibly wicked.
The Bible nowhere indicates that immortality is mankind's natural state; it teaches that we are inherently mortal and doomed to death. In 1 Timothy 6:16, the Apostle Paul emphasized that only God has immortality. He told the Church at Corinth that the righteous will put on immortality at the resurrection (I Corinthians 15:53-54) Here I could go off on a tangent on the "Soul," but I'll stick to the subject at hand.
Romans 6:23 tells us, "For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord." Please note that it does not say that the wages of sin is eternal life in torment.
Most of the verses you listed require no explanation from me, for they do not and in any way contradict what I have written here. Yes, the incorrigibly wicked will be thrown into the lake of fire and burned up, a death from which there is no resurrection. Matthew 10:28 "And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. But rather fear Him who is able to destroy both soul and body in hell."
As for the unquenchable fire, it is just like unquenchable thirst. It consumes all the fuel it has, until there is nothing left to consume. Just as someone with unquenchable thirst would consume all surrounding liquids until there is no liquid left to consume. It does not mean that the liquid (or fuel) keeps regenerating itself! And the worm? You're automatically assuming that this "worm" is a human "soul" (or the popular belief of what a soul is), where there is no other such usage of the word in the language of that time! Its meaning? Maggot. Maggots feed on the bodies of the dead.
And yes, this punishment is eternal. They will be eternally dead.
I'm guessing that you will next ask me about Revelation 20:10. Am I mistaken? ;)

Aug. 18th, 2006 07:54 pm (UTC)
Re: Funny, but I knew you would say that.
So... why didn't you say that in the first place?

I never assumed that "worm" meant "soul". Thank you for insulting my intelligence. I'll remember that. Aside from the slap in the face, which I actually don't appreciate, by the way, what you've said makes sense. It also removes a lot of the spirituality from the interpretation, which I'm all in favor of.

Yes, you're mistaken. At least until I get home and look up that verse.

I'm perfectly happy to leave the "spirit of the law" and "letter of the law" matters alone for the time being... that's a debate that nobody wins.
Aug. 18th, 2006 08:13 pm (UTC)
I apologize
I was in no way trying to insult your intelligence. I suppose I assumed that you were assuming, based on what most everyone else on the planet assumes. =)
Aug. 18th, 2006 03:01 am (UTC)
Just to clarify one thing . . .
Re: "love never has warmth of feeling for or against"? Doesn't sound much like love to me.

Like I said, a word should never be taken out of context. I gave you the list of different definitions for the word as an example of all the different meanings one word can have. You just chose one and inserted it in the sentence. Doesn't work. Would you do that with, say, the word "hard"? Green? Through? As I said, "covet" and "envy" fit the context.
Aug. 18th, 2006 10:23 am (UTC)
Re: Just to clarify one thing . . .
So... in pointing out why the first set of verses wasn't a contradiction, you posited that it was a different meaning of the word translated as "jealous" and therefore not a contradiction. Now you say that it is, in fact, the contradictory definition that's correct. I was just pointing out that the other ones don't make sense, in similar fashion. You missed the point of my statement entirely.

This is WHY your religion commands you not to discuss it with people like me. ^_^
Aug. 18th, 2006 05:01 pm (UTC)
Re: Just to clarify one thing . . .
No, jealousy, envy, and covetousness really aren't the same things. Like I said . . . envy is a desire for someone else's possessions, and God's jealousy is for what is rightfully his.
Aug. 18th, 2006 07:56 pm (UTC)
Re: Just to clarify one thing . . .
Makes sense. I still can't see God as anything other than an egotist who wasn't content admiring himself and had to create a universe full of people who would admire him or die. Like the author of the biggest self-insertion fanfic ever. But that's probably the point. ^_^
Aug. 18th, 2006 08:35 pm (UTC)
Re: Just to clarify one thing . . .
If that's the case, every parent on the planet is an egotist. God just wants a family to love.
Aug. 21st, 2006 01:12 pm (UTC)
Re: Just to clarify one thing . . .
Hmmm... imagine what the world would be like if every parent left a book with a bunch of unbelievable stories and some rules lying around, then waited until their kids were dying and said "You know, we have the technology to save you, but you had the audacity to be born, and on top of that, you never ate that peanut butter and pickle sandwich we wanted you to eat. So we're going to let you die, because we love you."
( (void *) comments[20] — Finger the nothingness that underlies everything )


Yes, I'm THAT Nidoking. Sometimes I write fanfiction... often I waste all my time playing video games and watching anime. But it's not a waste if I enjoy it, right? I can quote from a movie, video game, anime series, or British comedy apropos of just about any situation, and one of my main goals in life is to entertain people. (The other big one is amassing as much anime and manga as I can... see below for a progress report.) That's me in a nutshell. ("Help! I'm trapped in a nutshell! What a bloody great nutshell this is!")


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