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What if this happend

Hello guys,

I'm Jarl from Sweden. I've seen some episodes of atheist experience on youtube and I have a question that I would like to bring up.

Imaging this: You are diagnosed with some sort of deathly incurable cancer that only gives you a couple of weeks left to live. But one day when you woke up a man appear all over the sky claiming he's the god, father of Jesus. In order to prove this is he turn a grasshopper into a brand new Ferrari and he also cure you from your deadly cancer.

The question is not if this could happen or not but what IF it did.

What would you do in terms of belief and explanations? How would you explain to friends and doctors that you a) got a brand new Ferrari and b) that you just out of nowhere got cured from cancer?

Would you be a believer? What would you say to other atheists?

Cheers!

"Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic." --Arthur C. Clarke.

Somebody claiming to be God/whatever could always be lying. You would know that the being possessed some magic (or technology). Based on what you said, you couldn't know whether they were the claimed god or not. I would be impressed, but still skeptical. I would tell other atheists what my experience was and let them make their own decisions.

There is so much evidence against the Christian god, that one thing, however miraculous, would not contradict that evidence. If instead the being claimed to be Zork, I would not have any strong reason to be skeptical.

People who do not believe in magic or fantasies are to assume they really happen, and then what would we do?

What would you say if I told you that Cinderella's fairy godmother turned a pumpkin into a coach by waving a magic wand and saying bibbidi-bobbidi-boo?

And you have to believe that it really happened! What would you tell your grown up friends?

I'm sorry if this would be a doubled post (connection here's very annoying).

I'm a Christian, and if you want me to answer that question: I myself won't immediately believe his claim just because he performed something extraordinary.

I would be impressed, yes. But that won't make me believe in everything he would say or do. Would you believe in all of David Blaine's claims?

Jarl, even you believe that demons can perform great acts.

MJ said, "I'm sorry if this would be a doubled post (connection here's very annoying)."

I don't think there is any limit to the number of comments that someone can make if that's what you mean by doubled post? Connection problems can be frustrating. Have you tried to troubleshoot the problem?

MJ said, "I'm a Christian, and if you want me to answer that question: I myself won't immediately believe his claim just because he performed something extraordinary."

Yet, the miracles that Christianity is based on come from superstition and the myths of ancient primitive man. No one has the slightest physical evidence to support these claims.

All documents about Jesus came well after the life of the alleged Jesus from either unknown authors or people who had never met an earthly Jesus, or from fraudulent, mythical or allegorical writings. Philo Judaeus (a contemporary historian) wrote detailed accounts of the Jewish events that occurred in the surrounding area where all the so-called miracles occurred. Not once, in all of his volumes of writings, is a single account of a Jesus or these miracels. There is no mention of Jesus in Seneca's writings, or from the historian Pliny the Elder. If a figure as famous as the Gospels claim Jesus was (who performed miracles) existed at the same time of these historians, why did none of them ever hear of Him? Not one Jewish, Greek, or Roman writer, even those who lived in the Middle East, much less anywhere else on the earth, who ever mention him during his supposed life time.

The miracles that Christians believe in are eternal life, and the Eucharist, also called Holy Communion, and so did the believers in Mithras long before Christianity. Believers in Mithras were rewarded with eternal life. The Mithraic liturgy included the words, "He who will not eat of my body and drink of my blood, so that he will be made one with me and I with him, the same shall not know salvation." Mithraism had included the ritual a long time before Christ was born. Mithraism originated in the city of Tarsus in Cilicia, the place the apostle Paul came from. The apostle Paul claims that he got the instructions for the Lord's Supper directly from Jesus. The Lord's supper was not given to Paul by Jesus, but was recycled by Paul. It came from Mithraism, the mystery religion that existed long before Christianity and was Christianity's chief competitor up until the time of Constantine. There is nothing in all of Paul's writings that state he ever met the living Jesus, and he does not talk about Jesus' life on earth. Paul's accounts about Jesus came from visions or hearsay. Paul's visions, and most of his theology, can be found in Mithraism. In Mithraism, the central figure is the mythical Mithras, who died for the sins of mankind and was resurrected. Another main miracle belief of Christianity is the virgin birth. The apostle Paul never mentions the virgin birth. Paul says that Jesus was "born of a woman," (not a virgin woman) Galatians 4:4. Why would he leave out this amazing miracle? The virgin birth and the crucifixion were added on later.

Not one Jewish, Greek, or Roman writer, even those who lived in the Middle East, much less anywhere else on the earth wrote one word about a miracle working Jesus during his supposed life time. Paul admits that he did not know Jesus during Jesus' lifetime. All of Paul's theology is based on revelations, or visions.

Accounts of miracles found in ancient writings are not proof of miracles. In Luke 23:44-45, there occurred "about the sixth hour, and there was darkness over all the earth until the ninth hour, and the sun was darkened, and the veil of the temple was rent in the midst." Yet not a single mention of such a three hour ecliptic event got recorded by anyone, including the astronomers and astrologers, anywhere in the world, including Pliny the Elder and Seneca who both recorded eclipses from other dates. Solar eclipses can't occur during a full moon and Passovers always occur during full moons. Not a single contemporary person writes about the earthquake described in Matthew 27:51-54 where the earth shook, rocks were rent, and graves opened. Dead people were walking around but historians didn't notice.

Most Bibles, when introducing the Gospels, as well as other writings that are contained in the canon, inform that the authors are anonymous and unknown. It doesn't matter what these people wrote about Jesus; an author who writes after the alleged happening and gives no detectable sources for his material can only give example of hearsay. There are many ancient primitive myths comparable to Christian beliefs in miracle working savior gods that were in circulation at the same time. Belief in this does not require facts or evidence. There is no evidence for Jesus existence or any of the miracles that Christianity is based on. Belief in miracles and (born of a virgin) a savior gods is about people who believe stories that are told about something that happened long after the event.

MJ said, "I would be impressed, yes. But that won't make me believe in everything he would say or do. Would you believe in all of David Blaine's claims?"

Today most people know how magic tricks are done. That was not the case in ancient times. Ancient people believed in magic and sorcery. Biblical accounts do not say that sorcerers were not able to perform magic; it's just not the right kind of magic. The word for "religion" and "magic" has common roots. The peak of magical activity judging from the popularity of the curses was in the third and fourth centuries AD, coming to a peak just as Christianity was made the state religion of Rome. Magi and magicians can be found throughout all of history. Religion is full of rituals, chants, ceremonies, and oaths intended to influence the supernatural in some way.

MJ said, Jarl, even you believe that demons can perform great acts.

Why would anyone believe in demons that can perform great acts? There is no proof of anything except that belief in demons comes from ancient myths, and there were many variations and philosophies associated with myths about demons. Much of the terminology and belief in demons was traced to Mesopotamia, Sumeria, but the stories originated in the ancient Phoenician city-state of Ugarit. The influence of the Phoenician literature of Ugarit can be found in the Old Testament in the Hebrew works that were composed between the seventh and the third century BC Proverbs, Song of Songs etc. including the creation story. Besides the chief god at Ugarit there were lesser gods called demons. This was a polytheistic religion with gods and demons that do turnabouts. There were good or bad demons and good or evil gods. The monotheistic religions evolved from these early myths, and so did the evil spirits. Ancient religions mingled angel, spirits and demons. The Christian concept of opponents of God that were demons was left over from the demons of polytheism, but the Christian demons status as diabolic powers differs from that of the demons in polytheism, because demons in polytheism were not necessarily evil.

Ugaritic literature attests that the god of death, Mot, warns Baal not to boast "because you have smitten Lotan (Leviathan) the evil serpent, you have destroyed the crooked serpent, the mighty one of seven heads." A remarkable parallel can be made of the serpent in the Ugaritic text, the story of the serpent in Isaiah 27:1 and the Garden of Eden serpent story in Genesis that explains why we are not mortal. These evil demon serpent stories were combined.

Thank you Linda for the information about the writers contemporary to Jesus' time, Paul's theology and Mithras, historical sorcery, about those snakes, etc.

I can see that you have tons of evidences to discredit the Bible. I have my resources about Jesus, and the Scripture's authenticity. But this Mithraism got my attention. I'll try to do a research on it.

Thanks again.

Thanks for the thought experiment, Jarl. I'd answer an unequivocal 'No', and here's why: As Carl Sagan is quoted as saying, "Extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence". Ergo, the level of proof has to match the level of claimed 'greatness'. For a being characterized as so ultimately grand as to have contrived the universe from nothing and itself be eternal, omnicient, etc.., it would easily already have known ahead of time that such trivially 'basic' demonstrations (for an 'all-powerful' being!) as a cancer cure and car would be woefully insufficient to convince (e.g., it could just be Dr. McCoy with his Hypospray after Kirk beamed down the Ferrari).

As such, it's extraordinarily difficult to come up with enough proofs to support such a gargantuan hypothesis as the 'god' one. At the very least, he/she would have to come armed with the following (and much, much more): (1) Verifiable and transparent details about itself (e.g., origin or history, disposition, intentions, etc...). (2) Insight into my own psyche and immediate thoughts while also providing mind-blowing meaning to my now cancer-free life. (3) Answers and clear demonstrations regarding questions about when life over (e.g., afterlife, souls/spirits, the force, whatever). (4) An explanation as to why it did such a poor job demonstrating itself to the world through 'religion' and why it never sought to 'prove' itself to me before.

That's just a start, but hopefully you get the point...

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