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Morality is Dictated by Nature

What gives morality a subjective character is the realization that it tends to vary from person to person. From behavioral observation of Man, it is apparent that what one person considers moral can be radically different from that of others. However, an average moral code exists among populations and is naturally shaped by experience.

As a species persists, its development will evolve naturally towards more successful modes of survival. This is the underlying reason for the extreme growth rate of the human population over the last few thousand years.

As with most social animals, human morality - a code of acceptable and unacceptable actions - is built through common teachings and interactions with other individuals and serves as a guide to personal behavior - a tool to maximize the probability of survival. When enough individuals agree on a moral issue, a population will tend to enforce obedience through various measures - such as shunning, physical abuse, banishment, imposition of extra duties, etc.

In order to operate outside of the prevailing moral code, one must hide behind lies and deceit. This is why propaganda is employed by the State and why thieves often put on a facade of honesty. Over time, experience causes a moral code to grow - making it more difficult to work against the grain of popular opinion.

As morality becomes more sophisticated, so do attempted schemes to defeat it. Imagine if the US Central Government had to acquire all of the money it spends through direct taxation rather than through debt and use of the insidious inflation mechanism provided by the Federal Reserve. Do you suppose all Americans between 15-64 could/would dole out over $18,000 per year on average to maintain the behemoth? If that were the case, wouldn't the thievery be much more obvious to the People?

Humanity is evolving and so is Our list of acceptable and unacceptable actions. It is a natural process. We live and We learn. Our moral code will continue to change in ways that will optimize Our ability to survive. Nature ultimately dictates morality.

In the practical limit of long time scales and faithful propagation of knowledge, human experience becomes more complete leading to a moral code that becomes capable of diagnosing an ever expanding array of situations. Very similar to the approximation of an infinite sum by a finite sum, as the number of terms - amount of experience - is increased the approximation will asymptotically approach the true value.

In the most stringent practical sense, the existence of an optimal moral code is an objective reality, and one of its primary properties must be an inherent respect for Human Nature.



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LOL!

Sorry, it is not in the best interests of survival of the individual to care for sick or elderly "useless eaters", not steal, not lie, be monogamous, or honor one's parents. And maybe those are virtues you do not see as beneficial. They certainly did not "evolve" through natural selection. Got anything else?

Phxarcher87's picture

whether you have offspring in

whether you have offspring in the spring is dictated by nature not morality. morality comes from the super obvious fact that an supreme intelligent designer of the cosmos created us in his image hens forth moral beings of every kind all across the land choose to love over hate.

THE CLASS OF CITIZENS WHO PROVIDE AT ONCE THEIR OWN FOOD AND THEIR OWN RAIMENT, MAY BE VIEWED AS THE MOST TRULY INDEPENDENT AND HAPPY.
James Madison

Could this supreme intelligent designer...

Could this supreme intelligent designer (SID) have created the rest of the whole cosmos in her/his/its image, too?

Why not?

In what's image did she/he/it create the rest of the cosmos, then?

Had the SID created time before he created humans?

You misunderstand "In His Image" as most people do

This is how I believe it to be, and it makes the most sense to me.

Today we have a hard time understanding what it could mean to be made "In His Image" but back when the Bible was written, there was no argument over what that meant.

At the time, those in power were called the "Image of God", a representation of Him on earth. I could go into far more detail, but I think it's pretty self explanatory why we get it confused now.

To be made "In His Image" is to be made a ruler, a king. We were made kings of this planet, stewards, and yet another reason God is called the King of Kings.

Individual freedom. Divinely inspired from the beginning.

PS: A bigger clue is that people confuse the words, we were not made in HIS image, God said, let them be made it OUR image. A thorough study of the Bible and how God runs his kingdom, leads me to believe He was in fact talking to His counsel, not the trinity.

Why?

If your interpretation is correct, why would he/she/it want humans to be "kings" of the planet. What would that even mean, millenniums ago or now?

King and kingdoms seem to be such a bad idea. In fact, history shows us that the arrogance of kings, or single sovereign authorities, has been one disaster after another for humanity and the environment.

Why would the supreme intelligent designer, with his/her/its infinite wisdom, would want us to think of ourselves as kings? What good could have come from it?

Why wouldn't one arrogant tyrant after another through the centuries simply play his divine "king card" to justify his totalitarian ways over each newly subjugated kingdom? ("God has ordained me to be king!")

It makes no sense to me. Does it to you? How?

well... we are ALL kings

"God has ordained me to be king!"
because when someone claims something it's automatically true?

no... see... that's the thing... anyone CAN claim more rights than another... but it doesn't mean anything... and when they do, we should point and laugh at them as if they were psychopaths; that is... if they weren't joking... that is how that should be handled... not "ok, you are the king of all of us all", (as if one person has any authority to speak for anyone else other than themselves) .. we could say they are the king of us all, but it would be untrue... because that is impossible, there is already a king of all of us, aka "king of kings", and no mortal is, or will ever be, that. anyone claiming otherwise is delusional.

just like a group of people claiming one member of their group is the leader of people not in their group. such as, a group of voters, voting for a person to lead people who didn't participate in, or agree to, the vote. it's delusional.

I use Blue Wave, but don't expect one of THEIR silly taglines.

So, let me get this straight...

Anthony in AR staes, that the Biblical term actually means "...To be made In His Image" is to be made a ruler, a king."

jb.kibs further explains that if a person, Christian or not, claims that he is a king then "...it doesn't mean anything... and when they do, we should point and laugh at them as if they were psychopaths..."

Can somebody help me out here!

Isn't it common to find

Isn't it common to find substantial difference between a person’s moral views and their actual behavior?

"What gives morality a subjective character is the realization that it tends to vary from person to person. From behavioral observation of Man, it is apparent that what one person considers moral can be radically different from that of others."

Behavior does seem to vary, but actual moral views far less so. A person who commits adultery, for example, may sincerely and plainly agree that it was an immoral act. It was his behavior that set him apart, not his basic moral view about the behavior (at least if his confession is to be believed). If one were to take a survey concerning how one OUGHT to treat others, even using a large sample cutting across any number of demographics, I think one would find that views would be strikingly similar. People shouldn’t cheat, steal, lie about, abuse or murder their neighbors. Yet people in droves cheat, steal, lie, abuse and occasionally murder their neighbors. Courage is a virtue that is honorable, while cowardice is shameful. Yet cowardice and courage can blaze side by side on the same field of battle, with even the coward admiring the brave.

Observing a man’s behavior is not necessarily an accurate way to evaluate his views about how men ought to behave. If it were, then there would be nothing akin to a guilty conscience. If the situation were otherwise, then whatever a man does, he would be doing with conviction about its goodness in a moral sense… and that is clearly NOT the case. Men often do what their moral knowledge tells them they ought not to do, and they will leave undone things they are often willing to admit they should have done. Make no mistake about it, excuses and rationalizations often pour out of the ‘guilty’ like rodent dung -“Yes, I know I cheated on my husband and it was wrong… but we never talk anymore and I’m so lonely.” Or “Okay, I shouldn’t have sliced his tires, but he shouldn’t have taken my designated parking spot.” But such justifications seem only to confirm that these widespread and mostly common views press in on us, causing the offender some discomfort.

Very few people on this Earth view morality as subjective. I say this not as a counter point to your post. My real point is that basic views about what is right and wrong in an interpersonal sense, seem to vary little from person to person, while actual behavior seems to range somewhat further, though not so far as we might suppose. But an interesting question arises here… Who is more likely to experience a troubled conscience– a man who views morality as objectively imposed by a higher authority, or a man who believes moral views are contingent? And who is more likely to shrug his shoulders at his own behavior - The man who knows he did wrong in a concrete and awful sense or the man who thinks ‘wrong’ is nothing more than a subjective and transient label?

The point here is that morality is about how one OUGHT to behave. And if these views about ‘ought’ are indeed wholly subjective, then there is no obligation to it, and the OUGHTness of morality becomes quite meaningless. To the ‘enlightened’, morals are no longer about how one actually ought to behave. Morality becomes something within social studies, something to study and understand about the less enlightened - like examining a naked savage or the mating dance of crane. “It’s all very interesting how these chemical sacks called humans feel strange obligations, as if there was some objective yet immaterial rules hanging over them. It is all a survival strategy imbued through natural selection. ” If the material universe is all there really is, then talk about how things ‘ought’ to be is ultimately arbitrary at rock bottom. In a 'blind watchmaker' universe, there is no more of an obligation on any individual to submit to an optimal morality (if such a thing could even be known within a contingent realm of experience), than there is to any current and apparently deficient one. All that is left to study is how things are… and how things are and how things ought to be are two different questions entirely.

Studying human behavior and morality are certainly related topics, but not exactly the same sort of study. To view them as practically synonymous can lead to misunderstandings about both. For example, it is clear that we no longer (at least in the West) execute witches. And yet it is clear that at one time it was considered right to execute witches. Why the change in behavior? Did morality change, or did our metaphysical opinion about witchcraft change? Clearly, we no longer punish witches because we no longer believe witches exist in an actual sense. If we were convinced that there really were individuals whose incantations were spreading trouble and causing misfortunes like demon possession and small pox, we would still be punishing them. Thus, what one might call an advance towards an optimized moral code is sometimes a change in metaphysical opinions about the actual nature of reality, which then leads to a change in behavior. The Behavior changed, while basic views about how one ought to behave did not.

Adulterey, theft, murder, etc

tend to be where moral beliefs currently overlap. However, I wasn't limiting morality to these basic acts. For instance, I brought up monetary inflation as an example. Although at its core it is theft, many people are still blind to the fact - so, up until now, there hasn't been significant overlap for society to do away with it.

While many people may perform acts that they themselves consider immoral, it does not preclude the reality that many do not consider those same acts as immoral. For example, many people have a results based morality. This type of morality, for instance, may condone redistribution and provides an example where theft is thought a noble, moral endeavor.

My point was that with experience, it becomes more difficult to fleece people - hence the adage "you can't con a con man."

This is true whether observation of behavior is an accurate measure of morality or not. However, I would like to point out that a great number of people rationalize their immoral behavior in terms of intended consequences and to them - in that instance - their behavior seems to them not only moral but necessary.

In regard to your example of

In regard to your example of inflation, this would hold no real difference in moral conviction. If it is, in fact, theft, then the issue has far more to do with the behavior not being understood as theft, rather than this particular theft being okay with the mass of humanity. It becomes a question of understanding the nature of a particular thing, and not a question of differences about right and wrong, good and evil.

It seems the rest of your points seem far more likely to call your mystical belief in a future naturally derived optimal morality into question, rather than be supportive of it. The issues you mention seem to be on the increase, and possibly in direct relation to the extent to which the idea of an objectively imposed moral code is rejected.

I ask again... "Who is more likely to experience a troubled conscience– a man who views morality as objectively imposed by a higher authority, or a man who believes moral views are contingent? And who is more likely to shrug his shoulders at his own behavior - The man who knows he did wrong in a concrete and awful sense or the man who thinks ‘wrong’ is nothing more than a subjective and transient label?"

I think the answer to your question follows naturally from

the evidence.

Historically (and currently) speaking, has atheism or theism resulted in more death, theft, and destruction?

As far as your criticism is concerned. Theft is theft. However, all moral codes tend to include extenuating circumstances - even the NAP. As moral codes develop more over time, more details are added to the definitions of acceptable and unacceptable actions.

You say it follows from

You say it follows from historical evidence, but then offer no conclusion about it... as if it is evident. Please elaborate.

Even so, we are back into discussing behavior, rather than morality. But I did ask the question.. though I don't think your reply was an answer to that question.

Just want to thank dwalters,

Just want to thank dwalters, BILL, and a few others who have engaged in this debate thread and a few others recently. I find this stuff fascinating. And I've very much enjoyed reading through the back and forths. Thank you for thinking so hard and so well on the subject.

I tend to think that morality is a avenue of thought rather than set of rules. More a continual contention than a universal truth. In other words, morality is the purview of man, not God.

Certainly God has had a lot to say about it in the Bible. Certainly he's concerned with how man goes about contending with it. But God leaves us with mixed messages: Thou shalt not kill now go out and kill every living soul in Canaan. Thou shalt not kill, but I'll kill all the boy babies of Egypt. Don't be loose sexually, but if you find yourself a slave to a king like Ester, you'll be held in high esteem for screwing reprieves for you people out of the king. God's moral messages in the Bible are messy.

Morality is messy. By it's very nature because it deals in the very messy business of freedom. It seems to me that God is far more interested in us -- his creature -- in what we do when we're free than in morality. And one of the things we do when we're free -- and that, at it's most basic level, is freedom from God -- is contemplate morality.

We struggle with it. We adapt. I think dwalters is completely correct when he/she writes that we humans have been evolving moral systems from the get go. (Okay, he/she didn't write that, but it's implied.) That's an outgrowth of our self-awareness coupled with our freedom. We don't even need society to contend with morality. Several notable hermits have devoted years of writing to morality only as it applies to the self and the self's responsibility to the time given it.

We have an innate interest in morality, whether we're Christians, agnostic, Buddhists, atheists.... I think because we recognize ourselves as innately free. We don't need God to have these qualities. Neither does God give us our morality. Morality is a human invention, which God has been quite interested in. But it's still human. We decide. Whether our decisions are guided by a god-blueprint in our psyche/souls or by a process of natural selection, morality is still entirely human. Entirely ours.

That's how I've been thinking about it, anyway.

The bottom line...

...of all the Bible, all the Law, all the Prophets, as Christ boiled it down, is: Love God; Love others as yourself. This is the objective morality, the set of rules, the natural law that is above all else (from which I derive the NAP, etc.). And I do indeed see this very Love reflected in the Son, the God-Man, the Servant.

So how do we square those violent deaths and killings and judgements in the OT with that morality? The only way it can be reconciled for me is to fall back on the realization that we all are in the same boat as the Canaanites, the Egyptians, the Sodomites, the Flood victims, etc. -- we all face death: death by sword, death by hurricane, death by car accident, death by martyrdom, death by disease or calamity or just plain wearing out. This fallen world is running its course with consequences upon consequences of human free will choices and natural decay being allowed to occur -- but God will pull each of us through the door of death into the next phase of our journey, in the time and manner of his choosing; not because He has any pleasure in the death of anyone by any means, but because we are being called to be reconciled to Love, whether now or in the age to come.

I personally believe every person will be reconciled at some point to God, however hard a process that is for each individual to arrive at that through their free choice; Love will be victorious. Anything else, where a God gives up on people or decides to eternally torment them for some supposed 'retribution' doesn't add up with the idea of 'God is Love', His mercies never come to an end, etc.

So God exercises His free will to pull us through the death process, so that in spite of whatever short-term horrific pain it involves, the long-term benefit of reconciliation of all His creatures can best be achieved in the age to come. This does not translate into it being morally acceptable for a human, without such overarching wisdom, to put themselves in the place of God and think they can decide when and how people pass through death's door.

YOU may believe that but.....

"I personally believe every person will be reconciled at some point to God"

You may believe that, but God says otherwise!

READ you Bible carefully, prayerfully, and daily.

Follow and share the Truth written therin and do not deviate from that Truth....EVER!

Peace

" In Thee O Lord do I put my trust " ~ Psalm 31:1~

Think it's more like...

...different human interpretations/translations say otherwise? Each view points to Biblical texts which seem to support it and which seem to be problems for the other view(s). For example, Col 1 speaks of all things in heaven and earth having been created by God and then His reconciling all things in heaven and earth through the peace of Christ established on the cross. I agree that we shouldn't just jump to this or any viewpoint without careful study, but I am personally finding that it better fits the overall flow and story of Scripture: all things from Him, all things for Him, all things through Him, all things to Him. The judged restored through repentance and mercy; the exiles returning; the fallen redeemed and restored.

Calvinists look at all these scriptures and say that God doesn't want to save everyone, but that as the Sovereign, He will accomplish fully the saving of all those He chooses.

Arminians looking at all these same scriptures say that God's will is to save and restore all, but that human free will has a designated sovereignty to it that will eternally frustrate His purposes for some or even most of His creatures.

Universalists look at all this and agree with Arminians that God does want to save all, and agree with Calvinists that He will ultimately be victorious in accomplishing all that He wills. I find this last view best fits with the God who is Love (Love is greatest, etc,) and with the overall balancing of Scripture with Scripture.

Just out of curiosity -- which of the other two positions are you more convinced of?

God Saves Whomever He Chooses To Save!

The Bible alone and in its ENTIRETY is the Truth of God's Word and that is what we use to share Truth.

NOT what our sinful feeble minds "think" what God will do or should do if He is merciful or compassionate!

As a Christian, it is your duty unto the Lord and to His glory to share what He has said, and not to add to it nor take away from it!

Enough of this "It depends on what your interpretation is" BALONEY!

Enough of this "Calvanists" etc Baloney!

THAT is the argument all the unbelievers use to deny the Truth of the Bible.

Will you take part with them in spreading unbelief and deceit about God's Truth?

ARE YOU OF GOD OR MAN?

WILL YOU SHARE THAT WHICH GOD GAVE US, OR WHAT MAN GAVE US?

DO YOU BELIEVE THE BIBLE IN ITS ENTIRETY OR NOT?

There are many, many Scripture verses stating that only a "remnant" shall be saved, that only "few" are they who find the narrow and straight gate, and NOT because poor, poor God failed and just could not draw everyone to faith and so He had to settle for whatever He could get!

How dare we bring Him down to our very PITIFUL level, and say that wicked man was able to overcome the very will of God!

Put that damned satanic thought away from you if you will be a witness of God! PUT IT AWAY!

Just as in Noah's day, there are ONLY those whom God will save!

If you deny that Truth, then you are a false witness and do the work of the deceiver.

I hope you think about this and hold fast to the Word of God.....The Bible!

Jesus Himself said to the Scribes and Pharaseses that "You are of your father the devil and therefore you cannot understand my Words" (They were NOT of God nor chosen of God).

Just as the vast majority of Israel perished in the wilderness and their carcasses fell, so it will be throughout the ages till He comes!

"Jacob have I loved, and Esau have I hated" saith the Lord!

God says "I will have mercy upon whom I will have mercy, and I will have compassion upon whom I will have compassion"

"Is there then unrighteousness with God? God forbid"

It is written in both Old and New Testament books that to those who are not chosen of God, are hidden the things of God, lest they come to the knowledge of the Truth and believe and should be converted.

How can you deny that and shove it aside like it is just somebody's personal interpretation!

When the King of Kings, gives us His message, how dare we deviate from every word He commands us to bring to the uttermost parts of the earth?

If you put God and the Truth of His Word first, and that alone to share His Truth, you will be witnessing truthfully.

" In Thee O Lord do I put my trust " ~ Psalm 31:1~

I actually...

…agree with much of what you say, holbrook. It sounds like you have the first of the three views -- that God only wants some of His creatures to not perish, but that those whom He does want to be saved will all be saved.

We are on the same page in affirming that the entire set of people whom God chooses will eventually be reconciled to Him -- His will shall be ultimately accomplished, not frustrated. It's just that we disagree on the size and scope of this set.

You see the texts as saying that this only includes some, even few of God's creatures. I see the texts as saying that ultimately all God's creation will be reconciled, and that God loves all and does not wish that any should perish -- in other words that God has chosen everyone to be ultimately saved.

I agree with all the verses you cite about remnants and this person being chosen and that person not being chosen -- but this is all within the context of the short-term flow of earthly human history, with God intervening when and where He decides, to help shape that flow towards the fulfillment of the Gospel. Indeed, I only see a remnant being initially in the New Jerusalem/New Earth; but I also read that the city's gates are never shut, and that blessed are they who 'wash their robes' that they may enter the city -- the city also being described as containing the tree of life for the purpose of healing the nations.

So although during the process of earthly history a remnant has been the thread God has especially worked with, this does not contradict the vision in other passages of all things in heaven and earth eventually being reconciled to God through Christ (Colossians 1, etc.). I see the remnant as the early trailblazers on the pathway of the Gospel, in this age; I see the full reconciliation God desires as being achieved in the age to come.

God is Love; every action of God, whether it involves blessing or chastisement, judgement or mercy is for His loving purposes. The idea that He would deliberately create some people solely for the purpose of destroying or eternally tormenting them does not comport at all with the description of Love as always hoping, never failing, wanting the best for its objects, etc. one finds summarized in I Corinthians and elsewhere.

The angel announced to the shepherds good news, which was for all people. How could the arrival of the Christ, the Savior, be good news for all people, if the vast majority of people who came before and many or most of those who would come after had no hope of even being a part of the exclusive club? This would be very bad news for most people.

Salvation to "us-ward" who believe!

To say the we are on the same page is not accurate at all.

Read Psalm 1
Read Psalm 37
Read your Bible and see what happens to the wicked!

You quoted from 2 Peter 3:9 That God does not wish that any should perish but that all should be saved:

"The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance"

If you read that more closely and compare that to ALL the Bible you will see that this can ONLY mean that God does not wish that any should perish ( that Christ died for and therefore they will NOT perish, and CANNOT perish because Christ has already paid in full for ALL their sins, so all those He saved will come to the knowledge of the truth and be saved at some point in their life)

Here is where the clue is...it is in the phrase "to US-WARD"

Us-ward is also used in Ephesians 1:19

"And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power"

Do you see that! To "Us-ward WHO BELIEVE"

Peter is speaking to the "us-ward" and absolutely NOT about everyone!

That is who the us-ward are that God does not wish to perish.

If God wishes anything, and it happens contrary, then He is NOT the Lord God Almighty!

No if's and' nor but's about it.

Either He is Almighty and His will BE DONE or else He is a liar and delusioned imposter. Perish the thought!

Now, look at that passage again and compare it with Ephesian 1:19 and let God speak to you through His perfect Word.

We must compare Scripture with Scripture to confirm our understanding is correct.

Also, all the verses in 2 Peter chapters 2 and 3 are mainly talking and warning us all about ALL the unsaved who perished in all their wickedness in the days past, therefore their book is closed and they are without hope, also ALL the wicked who lived from that time on unto the very present who are to perish ( UNSAVED ) in ALL their wicked sins in the very end of this world because of their unbelief and hatred for the Word of God!

You need to get a hold of the reality of what the Bible speaks about concerning the multitudes of those who have died UNSAVED and will die UNSAVED that God warns about because of their unbelief, over, and over, and over again throughout His Word!

PLEASE do not talk around this very basic knowldedge and overwhelmingly stated fact of the Lord!

Go and preach the Truth and NOTHING less, lest you be an enemy of God and give all the unsaved out there a false hope that they will be OK in the end!

That is a lie that you have been taught is my guess.

Wherever it came from, it is a lie and is not of the Truth!

Peace

" In Thee O Lord do I put my trust " ~ Psalm 31:1~

No, I agree...

...that it is to the 'us-ward' who believe; it's just that 'us-ward' is everyone, because God will not rest until He has achieved a 'road to Damascus' intervention with even the hardest of hearts. Eventually everyone will believe and the full 'us-ward' will be reconciled. Until that point there is only a remnant, a subset of the full 'us-ward': all of Creation.

God is seeking to reconcile all things in heaven and earth to Him through the peace of Christ -- that is the full 'us-ward', although it may take aions upon aions for it to be realized. I believe hell will empty out over time, though, because I don't see a loving God giving up on any wayward prodigal. With God, there is always hope, no matter what.

Very sad

It's very sad to see you willingly put your head in the sand on what God is so very, very CLEARLY saying again and again throughout His Word that the vast majority both in the days gone by, and all the days thereafter, have died unsaved, and in our days will die unsaved because they are of the devil, they want not the things of God and they know not God as their Father.

THEY WILL PERISH IN THEIR SINS!

The entire Bible is permeated with that very basic Truth begining with that wicked Cain, to that very wicked Jezebel and on and on right on throught the Gospels with Judas Iscariot, right on to the very last book of Revelation where we read in Chapter 21:8

"But the fearful, and unbelieving, and the abominable, and murderers, and whoremongers, and sorcerers, and idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake which burneth with fire and brimstone: which is the second death"

(There are MANY more God adds to that list in Galatians and 1 Corinthinans for example)

I truly weep in my heart because you hold to this lie that all will be saved and deny the Truth and thereby call God a liar!

You are walking a very troubled path that leads to destruction my friend.

You are deceiving both yourself and others with this damnable lie.

" In Thee O Lord do I put my trust " ~ Psalm 31:1~

I agree...

...all these will perish in their sins, but unless God then annihilates them out of existence, I don't see that being the end of the story. As long as they remain in their unrepentant defiance, they will find themselves experiencing the consuming fire that is God -- but God is Love, including His consuming fire. The purpose of this is for redemption through repentance -- not some supposed 'retribution' wishing the worst possible fate for most of Creation.

Your understanding

is just that....YOUR understanding that is NOT in harmony with Scripture but rather to the contrary.

Your thoughts what "you see" that nobody will be lost in the end and that everyone eventually will end up in heaven are very compatible with the damnable Catholic teaching of "purgatory" are from the very wicked one himself, deceiving the multitudes.

When a person dies, their "book" is closed, sealed and it cannot ever be changed, according to what God says, not what I think!

There is no longer ANY hope for salvation for anyone who has died unsaved!

God makes that VERY clear in His Word and that is why the Scrpiture shouts as it were "Today is the day of salvation, don't wait another day to seek the Lord for you may not have tomorrow"

To continue to share that lie, is to do the work of the devil to his great delight.

Why are you clutching so dear to this lie I must ask?

" In Thee O Lord do I put my trust " ~ Psalm 31:1~

Hey maybe...

…we can private message each other further on this. Don't want to blow the thread up more than I/we already have. I'll let you have the last word here after this.

In short, each of us thinks the other's understanding is not the best fit overall with the Scripture, although both of us, I am sure, are attempting to align our views to that overall picture the best we can.

My motivation is simply to learn the truth and to uphold the particular truth that God is Love, and Love is greatest. The reason I brought this up in this thread was to try to square that morality of Love (the Greatest Commandments that Christ affirmed) with the examples of Canaanite genocide, etc., looking at the big-picture context, rather than just short-term perspective.

I am concerned with not maligning the character of the Supreme God Who supremely loves, and painting Him as a cruel, arbitrary, hypocritical tyrant, because of clinging to possible misconceptions based on tradition, peer pressure, poor translation of Greek into English, etc. I'm also concerned with not allowing these caricatures of an unloving God to then translate into our viewing a huge chunk of humanity as basically sub-human spiritual zombies--the unchosen--when they are actually all creatures of God whom He loves and has made in His image.

Botton line

The bottom line is that the entire Bible is God's Word to you and me and to all who will give their precious time to read it and let God speak to their heart.

Yes, God is Love! AMEN to that!
To think that God would send His Beloved Son to suffer for all my abominable sins is mind bloggling, and yet this is just what He did for His children, for it is written, "Thou shalt call His name Jesus, for He shall save HIS PEOPLE from their sins!

He shall save HIS PEOPLE ( NOT the entire world)

You seem to be clinging to that false hope of salvation for all and that absolutely is NOT anywhere in the Bible.

You forget that God is also JUST in all His ways!

God, the Righteous Judge, punishes sin.

We only need to look to Calvary to see the truth of that!

Jesus did NOT die for the sins of all mankind, but for HIS PEOPLE!

Read Matthew 25 for just one example that refutes your thoughts on this matter.

I also do not want to keep going around and around with this because it becomes redundant.

Either believe the entire Bible or believe none of it.

The facts ( God's Word ) that I have stated are very plain and very clear to anyone sincerely seeking the Truth.

Your false hope for those who have perished in their ungodliness, and all who will perish in their sins is contrary to everything in the Bible that speaks about God's just weights and measures.

Only God Himself can open your eyes to the Truth Micha.

Even Job prayed "That which I know not, teach Thou me"

The Psalmist wrote "O LORD, give me understanding according to Thy Word"

There is Hope ONLY for those who live and die in Christ Jesus and none other!

THAT, is the message of the Bible!

Your false hope is like floating somewhere out there in the middle of the Atlantic, clinging desperately to a life preserver that not only has holes in it but the sharks are quickly sensing your presence in their feeding ground! They are as the devil who will devour those who wander from that pathway of truth.

There IS a reason why you cling to this hopeless idea!

Let the Bible alone and in it's entirety be your guide, else...you are on your own with all those who doubt God's precious Word.

Peace

" In Thee O Lord do I put my trust " ~ Psalm 31:1~

Hear, hear. Good thoughts.

Hear, hear. Good thoughts. Glad the back and forth has been interesting to others than the participants!

Mutual Aid - Peter Kropotkin

Has a similar take on this process. Based on both his study of history and
scientific observations as a young Russian army officer in 19th Century Siberia.

If you accept, as Kropotkin does, that cooperation has been a factor in human
evolution, then what we view as morality or ethical behavior is to some extent
"natural" behavior..

"Kropotkin pointed out the distinction between the direct struggle among individuals for limited resources (generally called competition) and the more metaphorical struggle between organisms and the environment (tending to be cooperative). He therefore did not deny the competitive form of struggle, but argued that the cooperative counterpart has been underemphasized: "There is an immense amount of warfare and extermination going on amidst various species; there is, at the same time, as much, or perhaps even more, of mutual support, mutual aid, and mutual defense...Sociability is as much a law of nature as mutual struggle."[2] However, Kropotkin did consider cooperation as a feature of the most advanced organisms (e.g., ants among insects, mammals among vertebrates) leading to the development of the highest intelligence and bodily organization."

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mutual_Aid:_A_Factor_of_Evolution

Phxarcher87's picture

is not mutual aid

is not "mutual aid" another word for volunteerism?

once force/mandate is applied don't you mess up the naturalness of nature
and revert to warfare among what should be peace.?

THE CLASS OF CITIZENS WHO PROVIDE AT ONCE THEIR OWN FOOD AND THEIR OWN RAIMENT, MAY BE VIEWED AS THE MOST TRULY INDEPENDENT AND HAPPY.
James Madison

Phxarcher87's picture

Great debate

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pnvUzl0CqYU

to comment though, do you really think the problems we have now are much different than 2k years ago?

is slavery really gone just because a law passed a couple years ago in the grand scheme of slavery.

it seems to me every government that devalues human life ends up in total chaos where xx amount of millions of people die. I think the boat we are in( abortions and the way we treat our food/nature) is a for sure sign we are headed back down the failing paths of nations who we read about.

it seems to me that people want to be ruled. if we could just get back to individual responsibility for one problems in life with the help of friend and family life would naturally cure itself from its current bureaucratic muck

let us never forget our job no matter how scary-overwhelming is to resist the state

i personally believe that morality come from us being made in the image of the God of the universe hence every nation has moral people

THE CLASS OF CITIZENS WHO PROVIDE AT ONCE THEIR OWN FOOD AND THEIR OWN RAIMENT, MAY BE VIEWED AS THE MOST TRULY INDEPENDENT AND HAPPY.
James Madison

I think the fundamental problems will always be the same...

murder, theft, etc

However, the schemes required to pull them off successfully have become much more sophisticated. As humanity figures one scheme out, people with bad intentions figure new ways out. Over time, humanity becomes more keen to different types of plots making it ever more difficult to engage in those kinds of activities.

As far is the State is concerned, humans are in the early stages of experimentation. It's becoming more clear as time passes that there is no good form of "government." Any time a certain group of people are popularly believed to have the right to rule over entire populations under the threat of violence, the results will be bad.