yhvh

Tetragrammaton.

One of the most important aspects of the Occult is that of The Tetragrammaton. The Tetragrammaton is a Greek word meaning ‘the four lettered name’ and represents the four lettered name of God; the four Hebrew letters Yod, Heh, Vav, Heh, which transliterates into YHVH, or IHVH in Latin. Mispronunciations of The Tetragrammaton is where the name Jehovah, YahWeh, and YahVeh derive from. As all four letters are consonants, the true name of God is unpronounceable. Because the name is unpronounceable, inherently many derivations of a pronunciation exist which the magician can invoke in the work he performs. The quote of “Man Made In The Image Of God” also pertains to The Tetragrammaton as when all 4 Hebrew letters are written in an up-and-down orientation the word itself creates the form of a human being.

The Tetragrammaton in this representation is drawn as a Pentagram, which is one of the most important and misunderstand elements in the Occult. The Pentagram has 5 points, each of these points represents one of the 5 elements in nature: Earth, Air, Fire, Water and the topmost center point represents Ether, or Spirit; all 5 elements of God and nature. Within the Pentagram itself contains the graphical representations of all 7 “planets” and alchemical elements: The Moon (Silver), The Sun (Gold), Jupiter (Tin), Saturn (Lead), Mars (Iron), Venus (Copper) and Mercury (Mercury or Quicksilver, the most sublime of all elements). With the 'Eyes of God’ in the center, thus this graphical representation of the The Tetragrammaton is an all encompassing depiction of God, nature and the Occult.

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Because I couldn’t wait, here are some scans of the SMT4A artbook’s unused concept art for various Shin Megami Tensei IV Apocalypse demons, by Masayuki Doi! Included are rough concepts for YHVH, Inanna, Dagda, Cleopatra, Danu, Miroku, Satan, and Adramelech! Almost all of them look SIGNIFICANTLY different from their final versions.

This isn’t all of them though! Full translations of Doi’s comments and more, courtesy of Dijeh, will be coming soonish, so keep your eyes peeled for more SMT4A content!

Hey Atheists

So I see there is another anti-christian lie beginning to circulate among your numbers.

It’s the idea that Christians believe the entire universe was created just for them, and thus Christians are the arrogant ones.

As with SO many other things, NO, you are wrong. That is not a typical Christian belief, it is not at all a biblical teaching.

Mankind was created for the Earth. We were designed to be (as in a function) God’s image…on earth.  That’s ALL the book says.  It doesn’t talk about the rest of the Universe.

When you have to constantly make lies about what we believe, it makes your general argument appear weak.

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eirikrjs.blogspot.com
Selected Translations from: Shin Megami Tensei IV Final/Apocalypse Official World Setting Collection + Journey Towards the World of Mythology

Translated by Dijeh

Produced by Me…and YOU

Thanks to the SMT community on Tumblr, our premier polyglot, Dijeh, was able to expertly translate certain sections of the recently released Japanese SMT4F/A artbook. Precisely, this includes Masayuki Doi’s commentary on each of his new demon designs plus a full-length interview with the game’s producer, Kazuyuki Yamai, and its scenario writer, Yusuke Miyata. There’s a lot to unpack here!

As a bonus, I have meticulously scanned and edited most of the book’s new demon artwork, which entails both the official game art AND Doi’s unused concepts, the latter of which are as great in number as the finalized designs. Of course, FULL SPOILERS will be out in the open from the start, so only click through if you’re prepared for them. Please enjoy this exclusive English foray behind the scenes of Shin Megami Tensei IV Final/Apocalypse!

Oh, and did you know that Dijeh translated these materials, not me? Just making sure. :)

>READ MORE

Christian Apologetics Master Post

GENERAL OBJECTIONS

 How can a moral God send people to hell?   How can a good God allow the bad things that happen?

 The bible states that God is love (I John 4:8).  Part of the answer to this hinges on how we are going to define “love” in the context.  One of my favorite ways is to ask if locking one’s wife and children in your basement, so they can’t leave you and get hurt, is an act of love.  The honest answer will be no.  If God would force us to be in his presence, lock us in his kingdom against our will, can God be “Love?”  No, that would contradict.  This shows why free will must exist, and free will explains why people go to hell, as well as why bad things happen in this life.

            The other part is our idea of God.  For us, God is the source of all joy, health…all good things.  Thus, if we reject God using our free will, can we have any of those things?  Can we have joy?  Life?  We cannot.  We are left with a hellish state after rejecting God.  Hell is a natural consequence of a God who will allow us to reject him.  This applies to this life and the eternity that follows.  We can attribute all the bad things that happen to the bad choices mankind makes.  It can be upsetting to see, and more so to experience, but we cannot dodge the fact that god has allowed man to go his own way. 

It can be odd to see detractors of the faith angrily demand that God do something about all the bad things, if he is real.  We can answer that we believe he soon will.  Our time of sort of running the show has a limit.

 How can there be free will if God knows everything?  If God knows the outcome of each and every action, then it would seem that we have no real choice.  Since God already knows the outcome, it makes it impossible for us to choose a path.  Thus God must create some people knowing they will go to hell.

 This question appeals to the flow of cause and effect that we refer to as “time” in our universe.  The problem with this is that if God created our universe, then he must exist outside of and separate from our universe.  Since time is a concept that we can only understand within our universe, it is invalid to attempt to apply it to God outside our universe.  Basically, words like “foreknowledge” are meaningless if one is looking from a vantage point outside our flow of time.  It is entirely possible that God, from his vantage point, sees all of space and time at once.  If that is the case, then he does not actually look into the future, from within our flow of time, and lock outcomes into place. The nature of God as the creator, and thus his capability of transcending our universe, maintains the compatibility between free will for man and the knowledge God has.

 For scripture, we can point to 1 Corinthians 2:7 (ESV says “age”: Greek word Below)

αἰών, ῶνος, ὁ : Short Definition: an age, a cycle of time
Definition: an age, a cycle (of time), especially of the present age as contrasted with the future age, and of one of a series of ages stretching to infinity.

 But your bible says that God can do anything. Why can’t he make a way for people to reject him without hell?

 This question is of the same logic of the question, “Can God make a rock he cannot lift?”  It can be argued that the Christian idea of omnipotence is that God is free from such nonsensical contradiction.  To put it another way, our God is a God of truth.  If God created some non-hell dwelling for those who reject him then he would still be keeping them with him, in a different room so to speak, where the positive things that flow from him would still exist. 

What this question demands is dishonest in nature.  People who say this want to get the good things from God, while rejecting him at the same time.  That would not be truth.  Their option to walk away from him would be a lie.  For them to be able to completely walk away from the Lord, to cut all ties, then there must be a place where one can exist in a state that is totally cut off from God.  That place is hell.    The language of being “cut off” is found in many places in the Old Testament.  Choosing to sin is choosing to walk away from God, and results in being cut off. 

  But suppose someone is raised so that they never hear the name Jesus?  You’re saying that they will be sent to hell without a chance.

 No, that is not true.   Romans 2: When Gentiles who have not the law do by nature what the law requires, they are a law to themselves, even though they do not have the law.  15  They show that what the law requires is written on their hearts, while their conscience also bears witness and their conflicting thoughts accuse or perhaps excuse them 16 on that day when, according to my gospel, God judges the secrets of men by Christ Jesus.

 Should there be anyone who is kept from every hearing about Jesus, the above passage tells us that they are not automatically hell bound.  However, there is no guarantee that said person will pass through Judgment.  Jesus, however, is such a guarantee.  “Blessed Assurance” as one hymn puts it.  The Lord has given this assurance freely.  This is why it is imperative that we tell people the good news (the gospel).  It is their only sure way to make it.

If this is all true, then people would have to be spiritually insane to just walk away from God.

 You are describing sin nature.  In a way, we are all “insane” given our tendency to turn away from God.  Yet, despite this, God has given us a free way of escape.

SPECIFIC OBJECTIONS

 Rape: Your God condones rape.  Reference Deuteronomy 22:28-29, Exodus 21: 7-11, Numbers 31:18

 These are false.  Deuteronomy uses two distinct Hebrew verbs.  Taphas and Chazaq.   Chazaq is used in the obvious rape verse, after which only the man is put to death.  In the narrative about the unbetrothed maiden, for which the man must pay in silver, taphas is used.  This is a strong rebuttal, especially given that the verses juxtapose the two events.  In short.  The maiden for whom the man must pay silver, is not a rape victim.  This passage in no way condones rape.

 Exodus 21 involves indentured servitude and arranged marriage.  It is disingenuous to state that this absolutely involves rape.

 Numbers 31:18 is Moses speaking.  It is not commanded by the LORD.  Just because the bible reports something, does not mean it is commanded, or even condoned, by the Lord.

 Your God commands Slavery: Exodus 21

 When we today think of ‘slavery” we imagine the transatlantic slave trade.  This is in no way similar to what the Ancient Israelites engaged in.  Their practice is better described as indentured servitude.  IN that time and place servitude was a way to guarantee a home for oneself and food for one’s belly.  To juxtapose this practice against the transatlantic slave trade, consider this verse.

 Exodus 22: 16 Whoever steals a man, whether he sells him or is found in possession of him, shall be put to death.

 Your God commanded the Israelites to wage a genocidal campaign against the Canaanites in Exodus and Joshua

 Deuteronomy chapter 2 makes a direct statement concerning this campaign the Israelites were commanded to carry out.  Reading through this chapter, one sees that any area in which those “counted among the Rephaim” had already been displaced, were areas the Israelites were commanded not to bother.   This is a strong statement that the trouble was explicitly with those who were counted as “Rephaim.” 

            Rephaim is another word that is often used to refer to the progeny of the “sons of God” (ben’ha elohim) presented in Genesis 6, which are referred to there as “nephilim.”

            The point here is that God’s target was the progeny of these fallen divine beings of genesis six which are called by a number of names in the old testament.  Zanzumim, Avim, Emim, Horim, Nephilim, Anakim, and Rephaim.  The Canaanites tribes can be shown to all have a connection to Rephaim.  The Anakites have the namesake, The Amorites have Og of Bashan. 

            The presence of these Rephaim in Cannan, coupled with the instructions in Deuteronomy 2 , the fact that the flood directly followed the act of the Sons of God in Genesis, and that Noah was spared due to being perfect in his generation (uncorrupted in his lineage) makes a strong case that God is not in the business of ordering genocide against the sons of Adam (ben ha’ adam…humankind), but he was indeed in the business of destroying the Rephaim…whatever they were.

            Even Amalek (the Amalekites) had a mother who was Horim.

            Why is this a defense?  It is a defense because the Rephaim, in ancient tradition, were monstrous beings that drank the blood and ate the flesh of humans.  There were also instructed in sorceries and other things by their fallen angelic progenitors.  This information is not in our western bibles.  It is found in the first portions of the book of Enoch (included in Ethiopic bibles).  While we don’t count Enoch as scripture, it is notable that the authors of the New Testament found it valuable enough to cite numerous times.  For biblical backing of this idea, we can see that following the advent of the nephilim in Genesis six, violence increased so much on the earth that God decided to send the flood.

 Note: This has an odd implication as the Israelites failed to destroy these groups as instructed. Basically, what happened to the ones that were left?

 Your bible commands that people be stoned to death for all kinds of things, how is that acceptable?

 This is not true.  See John 8:7.  Also see Romans 3:22, 23

 John 8:7  And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.”

 Romans 3: 22 the righteousness of God through faith in Jesus Christ for all who believe. For there is no distinction; 23  since all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

However your God did command the Israelites to stone people.  That’s horrifying.

The stakes were very high. The Israelites lived among nations of Baal worshippers who routinely sacrificed children to the fire and had dealings with dangerous and malicious spirits. Such sins were corporate then and threatened to destroy all of Israel which would in turn destroy the salvation for all of mankind.  In Revelation it states that if the time of the tribulation were not limited that all flesh would be destroyed.  It is likely that this concept can be applied to the Old Testament beginnings of Israel as well.  As covered above, God gives free will.  To keep that from burning down the whole house that was Israel, God gave them harsh laws to get them through a dangerous season intact enough to bring about the Messiah.  

 Your God is a Misogynist and your religion is misogynistic.  It demands that women be subservient to men.  The bible teaches that the fall of man is woman’s fault. And thus women are evil.

 No, it doesn’t.

1 Corinthians 7:  3The husband should give to his wife her conjugal rights, and likewise the wife to her husband. 4For the wife does not have authority over her own body, but the husband does. Likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does.

As we can see, it is pretty hard to argue misogyny when the texts flatly tells husbands,    “Likewise the husband does not have authority over his own body, but the wife does.”
There is obvious Cherry picking going on to support this complaint against Christianity.  It is usually derived by quoting only the first half of the above passage, as well as Paul’s writings concerning roles in the Church.

     Gender roles in religious practice are common to numerous religious systems.  The only time it  ever seems to be a problem is when it is Christianity.
    Additionally.  The first witness to the Risen Christ was given to women, and the 31st Proverb presents an image of a woman that was more progressive than even American society in the early 20th century.
     Lastly, no, the bible does NOT teach that the fall is women’s fault.  Quite the opposite.

Romans 5: 12 Therefore, just as sin came into the world through one man, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men because all sinned— 

 OBJECTIONS INVOLVING HOMOSEXUALITY

 What kind of God will condemn people for being the way he made them?

       This is an argument usually leveled in association with something about homosexuality, but can apply to other things. The answer is simply that just because we human beings are physically born a certain way, doesn’t mean God made us that way.  Mankind has had a long run of free will and biblically, things have happened which have removed mankind from the original state God intended for us. The first and most well known is the fall of Adam and Even.  Thus, denial of the flesh is a major point in spiritual living.  It doesn’t matter what flesh nature we have at birth, we are still called to deny our flesh in favor of the spirit, as a way to get back to that original state God intended for us, and created in us.

 You Christians say that homosexuality is sin, but so is eating shellfish and wearing mixed fabrics, according to the same law.  You are cherry picking verses out of homophobic (irrational hate/fear of homosexuals, lesbians, etc) tendencies.

 This is untrue due to a few New Testament passages which address these things directly.  Romans 1: 24-28, Romans 14:4-8, Acts 15:18,29, Acts 21:25.

    Romans 1:24-28 establishes that certain sexual appetites and their associated activities are sin.  Acts 15 and Acts 21 makes it clear that gentiles are not expected at all to adhere to Mosaic or Levitical law, Romans 14 absolves eating of meats and observances of days chapters 3 thru 9 conducts an extensive discussion on the old law verses the law of grace, which is what we exist under today.

 Note: I don’t know how this would or would not work with Jewish people. As pointed out above, the book of Acts maintains that much of the law not be imposed upon gentiles, except for the things mentioned.  Romans 14 would be an argument in favor of other departures from the law for Jews as well.  This could make for difficult questioning for an apologist.

 The Bible does not condemn same sex marriage.  All the verses you Christians cite are in relation to temple prostitution and idol worship.  Furthermore, Jesus never said anything about it.  He also blessed the centurion, who was in a gay relationship.  We know this because the greek word “pais” means a young sexual slave.

    Working backwards.  “Pais” does not mean a young sex slave.  The word CAN be used to refer to such an individual, but it was also used to refer to any other young slave.   Additionally, this argument implies that Jesus would ALSO approve of pedophilia, since he did not specifically address that either, and blessed the centurion still. 

     The claim that the verses cited are in relation to temple prostitution/idol worship are derived from Romans chapter 1.  Idol worship is listed in the passage, and it can be seen that associated temple practices of the time were being alluded too.  However, that does not mean that each sin mentioned in the chapter is tied intrinsically to the next.  The chapter simply lists sins.  It in no way states that the same sex relationships were part of the idol worship of the time, and thus that is the only reason they were wrong. The dishonorable acts were dishonorable all on their own already.  That notion must be added to the passage by minds that want to erase a clear condemnation of same sex practices.  The proper, supportable, reading of the passage is simply that worshipping the creation is wrong, and that same sex relationships are wrong.

 Why aren’t you selling all your stuff and taking up a cross like Jesus told you to do?

 There is no such standing order in the scriptures.  You are referencing Matthew 19:21.  The interpretation of this passage as a standing order for all Christians through time to sell everything cannot hold water.  The man was used as a demonstration as to how material possessions can come in between man and God.  At no point in any place in the bible can we find an instruction that those who follow God/Jesus must first have zero possessions. Additionally, one must define “rich.” In America a person can own a car, a computer, have a cell phone, have a place to live and still be considered to be living below the poverty line.  In other nations, this person’s lifestyle would be considered to be very rich.  “Rich” is a relative term and it can apply to numerous things beyond just money and possessions.  The point of the passage is that any person who ha something that is of great importance to them will have trouble placing god above that thing.  This can even apply to friends and family.

 Your anti-homosexual ideas are still all just hate and bigotry.

     Consider the compassion it requires for a Christian, who in effort to ensure your eternal soul receives salvation, stands there and takes such insults.  The act of teaching the repentance and remission of sins, as Christ Commanded, is in itself an act of love and compassion for the spiritual well being of others. Christians do not say that homosexuality is a sin out of hate, they say it because they often genuinely care about the souls of others, and want them to be there in heaven.  How can that possibly be hate or bigotry?

 UNDERMINING THE BIBLE

 Which Bible should I believe?  The Protestant? The Catholic or the Ethiopic? Which version? Which Translation?

       The answer is, all of them.  There is no mainstream version of the bible that changes the core theology or writes a divergent gospel.  If you say that such a change in theology is evident, then please show me where.  

I say “mainstream” because there are groups that have constructed a “Gay Bible.” I haven’t read it so I can’t say what it has and hasn’t altered.

 But Jesus said that not a even a small bit of the law would change. Plus, God claims that he does not change.  So your bible is in contradiction if the penalty of the Old law doesn’t still apply

The price for sin is STILL death.  It can be analogous to speed limits.  If some unknown benefactor were to open a fund to pay all speeding fines from that point forward.  Speeding would still be against the law, and would still incur a fine.  The only difference is that the fee will have already been paid. 

In this way, the old practices of dealing with sin don’t need to be conducted by us, but the penalty has not changed.  The price of death for sin was paid on the cross.

 

For a list of 101 cleared up “contradictions”, go here: http://gluefox.com/min/contrad.htm

 

The bible was written too long after the fact to be reliable.
The Bible we have today was compiled by power hungry men who rejected scores of other much earlier texts and invented the Christian religion at Nicea.
The bible has been revised and translated so much that it is nothing like the original

I lumped these together because they are often found together. Again this argument requires sourcing. The detractors of the Christian Faith are usually quoting Dan Brown or one of his sources, and as usual the information is incorrect.  For a PhD that can be cited to rebut these claims, I suggest this video…

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XJn5EVwTHUQ      

   As can be seen from the video, we have quite early dates for the manuscripts of the New Testament.  We know the dates both from finding and dating manuscripts and pieces of manuscripts, and from instances when early church father quoted the texts (we know when they lived due to Roman records).  Logic demands that the text being quoted exist prior to the quote being made.  This pushes the date of much of the New Testament back to the first century.
           The other texts referred to are the gnostic “gospels.”  Not only do these texts lack historicity, (meaning that they contain no historical information) but the above facts prove that the New Testament manuscripts pre-date the known gnostic texts by a large margin, all save for the “Gospel of Thomas” Which is contemporary to some of our NT manuscripts, but is of unknown authorship.            
           Furthermore, the charge that the church left out some texts is inane.  Of course they did.  If I am going to write a book about the life of Elvis, I am not going to include everything ever written about the man, from people’s feelings about his music, to claims of seeing his ghost.  No, I am going to include only those things which contain facts about his life. Likewise, early Christians are going to include works that talk about THEIR faith, not someone else’s.  
           The charge that the religion was invented by power hungry men is silly simply because Christians were intensely persecuted by Rome for 300 years.  By the time Constantine came along, Christian beliefs had been established and bled over for a long time.
           One cannot claim that we do not have an original bible, and claim that the current bible doesn’t look like the original in the same breath.  It makes no sense.  We would need the original in order to know ours is different.
           Lastly, the NT boasts more manuscript evidence with smaller time gaps between time of writing and earliest known copy than ANY classical work accepted as historically valuable by Academia.  I refer to Caesar’s Gallic Wars, Tacitus, Herodotus, Plato, Pliny Secundus, Thucydides..etc…If those works are accepted as accurate for academic purposes, then so should the New Testament be.

Example:  Gallic Wars: written 100-44 B.C. Earliest manuscript 900 A.D. number of copies, 10
                New Testament: 50-100 A.D. Earliest Manuscript 114 A.D Number of copies 5366 papyrus manuscripts alone.

 Jesus is a rip off of Pagan deities. His Birth, ministry, death, Resurrection etc..were all appropriated from older Pagan deities.

This claim is made concerning Krishna, Attis, Dionysus, Mithra, Horus and in some ways, Odin and Osiris.  The assertion is that the above deities have details that match details about Christ, and thus Christians stole these things to invent Jesus.  The details are things like being born on December 25th (we know Christ wasn’t), having 12 followers (Attis), Dying on a tree (Odin) Being born of a virgin (All but Odin and Osiris), and being resurrected.

This is an easy one because they are all patently false. I will answer by category

Births:

-Mithra:  Born from a Rock (Later similarities date to the late 3rd and early 4th centuries))
-Attis: Conceived from an inseminated fruit set in a maiden’s lap
-Dionysus:  Conceived from carnal means, but fathered by Zeus.
-Horus:  Conceived carnally by Isis with Horus’ dead body.
-Krishna:  Conceived carnally by Devaki and Vasuveda (found in the Bhagavata Purana)
-Odin and Osiris: N/A

Resurrections:

Mithra:  Doesn’t die, he ascends to heaven in a sun chariot, after killing a bull.
Odin:  Doesn’t die:  He still lives, training his warriors in Valhalla for Ragnarok (Norse Myth).
Osiris: Isis recovers his dismembered body parts and re-assembles him. They then conceive Horus: N/A
Attis: Died UNDER a Tree, may or may not have risen again (Similarities date to after Christianity)
Krishna: Died by hunter’s arrow. (Later similarities date to long after Christianity)
Dionysus: N/A

Followers

Attis:  Carvings show him surrounded by 12 figures associated with the Zodiac. The relationship between them is unknown.

Answering these claims is really a game of source material.  Here is a list of good websites.  There are many more.

http://www.sullivan-county.com/bush/travilocity1.htm
http://www.strangenotions.com/exploding-mithras-myth/
http://beginningandend.com/jesus-copy-horus-mithras-dionysis-pagan-gods/
http://coldcasechristianity.com/2014/is-jesus-simply-a-retelling-of-the-osiris-mythology/
http://www.jonsorensen.net/2012/10/25/horus-manure-debunking-the-jesushorus-connection/

 The ancient Sumerians and Babylonians have the same flood story proving that the Israelites stole their religion from others.

   It is true that the Sumerians, and later the Babylonians, have flood stories that greatly match the biblical flood narrative. These narratives are within the Babylonian “Epic of Gilgamesh and the Sumerian “Eridu Genesis.” The Sumerian is the oldest written version.  That is a key point.  It is the oldest WRITTEN (cuneiform) version, but that does not mean it is the oldest source of the story.  Oral tradition was, and still is, a widely used method of passing on important information.  For all we know, a scribe in Sumer simply wrote a story he heard from the oral traditions of others.      
       I however do not think that is the case. What I think is that the flood happened. Any large enough flooding event would have left a cultural memory in the region, no matter which flood interpretation an individual Christian maintains.  The fact that other cultures in the near east know the story actually buttresses the claim of biblical accuracy that we maintain.  

 The ancient Israelites worshipped a Goddess as well.  This was later erased by patriarchal leaders who invented monotheism

Yes, SOME did. Just like today, people will do all manner of things. The fact that some Hebrews thought Asherah was the wife of YHVH in no way proves that the original religion included a goddess that got erased by an evil, patriarchal plot.

 OBJECTIONS INVOLVING SCIENCE

 There is no archaeological evidence supporting the bible.

   While this argument is usually made against the Old Testament (most frequently against the Exodus and the Davidic kingdom if the detractor is more astute), it is still false on its face.  The New Testament is backed by a great deal of archaeological evidence such as people’s names, place names, locations of pools, walls, gates etc which have been verified by other means.       The Old Testament ALSO has backing, such as the existence of the Hittites (long thought to be just biblical myth), the Merneptah Stele, the Madaba Map (location of Zoar), Bab-Edh Dhra and Numeira (destroyed by fire). There is much more regarding this subject, but it is a course unto itself. Lastly, lack of evidence is not evidence of lack in this case.

 Science has explained how things work so well that there is no room for your God.  Your God is not needed for anything to exist.

     This is not true.  Science has not explained how life began, or how the universe came to be.  One experiment, the Miller-Urey experiment, was able to generate amino acids within a theoretical “primal soup” but at no point has any experiment been able to move from amino acids to life.

    Scientists claim to know that the universe began from a singularity that suddenly expanded (Big Bang Theory and Cosmic Inflation).  There is a great deal of evidence for these theories, however they do not explain how the singularity came to be.  It is not truly an explanation for the existence of anything.  Something can’t just pop up out of nothing

Vacuum fluctuations have demonstrated that particles CAN just pop up out of nothing.

 No.  All observation of vacuum fluctuations have been made from within a universe full of matter and energy.  Even space-time is a thing.  It cannot be said that we have observed anything popping up out of nothing.

Additionally. Vacuum fluctuation have a component of time in their equation.  If the time is reduced to zero, which it would be at prior to the start of the universe, then there would be zero fluctuations occurring.  Simply put, without time, there can be no such quantum events.

 There is no evidence for your God, so unless we are going to be anti-science, there is no point in wasting thought about a God.  Science says we should treat God as non-existent until evidence is found.

 1.)     This is not sound scientific thinking.  We do not start out with such a conclusion.  The reason being is that if we begin with the conclusion that something does not exist, then any evidence found runs a great risk of being misinterpreted.  Take the Hittites again for an example.  For a long time, it was believed, by academic consensus nonetheless, that the Hittites never existed, and were a biblical myth.   Had all of academia concluded that the Hittites did not exist, then the civilization uncovered at Hattusa would have been classified as some other previously unknown civilization.  It could not have been the Hittites, since they were just biblical myth.  Luckily for scientific research, proper scientists did not close their minds in that way, and it was discovered that the bible was correct the whole time regarding the existence of the Hittites.

 2.)    It is not true that science demands we treat things without scientifically observable evidence as if they do not exist.  Take modern cosmology as an example.  Scientists imagine all kinds of things that we cannot actually observe or test, as they would allegedly exist outside our universe.  Things such as p-branes and quantum foam.  There is absolutely no observable evidence of any of those things, yet scientists spend thought on them.

 3.)    With 7 Billion people on the planet, it takes a large amount of faith to believe that none of those people have ever experienced any evidence of God.  Many Christians, including myself, have experienced reasons to believe what we believe.  Our faith may sometimes start out blind (mine did) but it doesn’t always stay that way. {A good time for testimony}

 But other people in other faiths also have spiritual experiences

 That is true, and is to be expected.  I believe other spirits exist.  As a Christian, I have what I see as a truly unique message to give.  No other faith offers the free redemption that faith in Christ does.   I also have reason to believe {personal testimony again} that Christ is a greater power than other spirits.

 OBJECTIONS ABOUT CHRISTIANS

 Christians think they are superior. They think they are right and the rest of us are wrong so they try to shove their religion down everyone’s throat.

     Yes, Christians think they are right. However, you think Christians are wrong, thus you also think you are right. There’s nothing wrong with thinking you are right. 

           Christianity cannot be imposed on anyone.  By its very nature, it is a volunteer faith.  No one can ever force another person to accept Christ because the acceptance must be real.  The only thing that can accomplish that is free will.  Free will is necessary for the growth of the Church. Thus a Christian will likely try to convince you.  I know some do this in a bad way, but it should be noted that the bible teaches that we are to try to do our convincing with love and respect.

 I see a lot of violence and oppression being done in the name of various religions.  Christianity isn’t any different. So ALL religion is bad.

 Churches all across America engage in food drives, clothing drives, and other charities.  This is on top of the plethora of large Christian charities that bring medicine, education, and even clean water to people worldwide. 

 What about the Crusades?  They are an example of the violence Christianity brings when it is in charge.

 The Crusades were actually a 400 year late response to Islamic attacks and invasion of Byzantine Roman/Christian lands.  It should also be noted that Europe was the third World of the day, in that time, and that the trade routes through the Levant were of vital economic importance.  In truth, the Crusades were NOT unprovoked religious aggression waged by bloodthirsty Christians, but were in fact defensive wars launched to secure vital trade routes.  It is undeniable that religion played a large role in motivating individuals to go on some of the later Crusades, but the idea of unprovoked aggression is a gross mischaracterization.

 GETTING PETTY

 I don’t need the bible to explain right and wrong to me.  Anyone with a functioning moral compass can do so on their own.  Christians are actually LESS moral because they mostly just believe what they were raised in.

If there is no God, then all morality is subjective.  Thus the claim that morality can be held without the bible is meaningless.  Yes, it is obvious that any person can come up with any idea of right and wrong.  How is that a good thing?

Western morality, including all the things western atheists conceive of as moral and immoral, are deeply rooted in the Judeo/Christian foundations existing in our society.  As seen above, atheists will often argue that people re religious mostly because they are raised that way.  To use this against them, the absolute morals they hold are ALSO because they were raised with them. Those morals stem from judeo-christian belief, which has been an integral part of the European and American psyche for over a millennia.

Atheism itself cannot offer any form of absolute morality simply because it contains no moral authority higher than man. Atheistic morality is objective in that it establishes things as moral/immoral only as long as a certain goal is in mind. Morality, in an atheistic universe, is solely up to the whim of mankind individually, and sometimes collectively when a group of people agree on pursuing a societal goal.   

Absolute morality is a position of faith that appeals to some kind of higher moral authority.  As atheism generally accompanies philosophies that reject faith, this point can be used to punch a hole in an atheistic attack against the God of the Bible.  Basically put, a person using our societies moral standards against murder, rape, theft, mal-treatment of the poor and slavery are drawing upon morality received from God whether they like to admit it or not.

Why is it that God gets credit for all the good things but has no responsibility for all of the bad things? 

 Genesis 6:6,7 features the Lord taking responsibility for the bad.  Even though the Ben’Ha Elohim were the direct cause of the violence on earth with their actions, the LORD still took responsibility, and moved to correct the issue. 2 Timothy 4:8 gives an example of the LORD allowing a human being credit for what they have done on earth.

Religious people in general are more stupid.  A Harvard study showed that higher IQs are found among atheists.

 1.)    Correlation does not equal causation.  Another correlation is that more religion is found among those with lower economic standing.  Lower economic standing is a direct cause of lesser education, and education has been shown to raise IQ scores.  Thus, it could be that being poor might actually be the CAUSE of the higher numbers of those with lower IQs that are religious, and thus being religious does not automatically mean that one is of lower intelligence, as this argument attempts to assert.

 2.)    IQ does not measure many other important capabilities of the human mind such as artistic ability, compassion, situational awareness, and empathy.

 3.)    The bible states in no uncertain terms that God will confound the “wise.”