Attributes of god

http://www.qcc.cuny.edu/SocialSciences/ppecorino/PHIL_of_RELIGION_TEXT/CHAPTER_1_OVERVIEW/Attributes_of_God.htm

        I believe God is Omnipotent.  God demonstrates his power over the world numerous times throughout the Bible.  Many stories, from Abraham delivering the Jewish slaves from Egyptian rule, to destroying the world with the flood.  We don’t know God’s plan or methods, yet we still try.  In our attempts to understand and identify God we question God’s power.  If God is All Mighty, then why is there evil?  We must first understand where we are and the purpose of earth.  The great dragon was hurled down, that ancient serpent called the devil, or Satan, who leads the whole world astray.  He was hurled to the earth, and his angels with him (Revelation 12:9).  The belief of some Christian faith is that earth is a spiritual prison or a City of Refuge.  Where the sinners of heaven have been casted and sentenced to death.  Through that same power that banished us from Heaven is the only power that can grant us forgiveness and allow our return home.

The Beneficent Being attribute of GOD. I hear people saying, God is so good he blessed me with some material gain or good fortune. Are we saying that those are what blessings are? What does the Bible say? Jesus used the word “blessed” four times in a row (nine times in a row in Matthew’s account in Chapter 5). In every case in Luke’s Gospel, the word is followed by an adjective that describes people that most of us would consider anything but blessed: the poor, the hungry, etc. We would probably consider them cursed (Klein, 2018). With that in mind the goodness of God isn’t how we as people perceive good. God’s goodness comes from the opportunity to earn blessings and be forgiven for our grievous sin. We all have that opportunity, so God is always good.

God possess the attributes that have been described, just not by secular comprehension. We must view spiritual issues with spiritual eyes not worldly ones. If we do that, only then can we begin to understand and see those attributes come true. When we were children, we viewed situations from a child’s perspective. I remember getting grounded for not following the rules or doing my chores. At the time I was very upset and felt like my parents were bad because the things I couldn’t do, others could. As I grew up, I realized that my parents were giving me tools to succeed in life and doing what was best for me. Once my perspective changed, I understood that I had good parents. In the same way if we change our perspective, we will understand the attributes of God.

Klein, J.L. (2016). Is God Good All the Time? Or Only When we Feel Blessed?

The Holy Bible, new international version, (1984). Grand Rapids: Zondervan Publishing House.

Science helps in our quest

Throughout our journey of growth and discovery, it is evident that we encounter various rich sources of insights that influence our approach to life and specifically in matters regarding religion and science. Individually, we all have different perceptions regarding life and its constituents but considering the fact, that we all liv in a community full of other individuals, it is evident that we can influence or gain influence from the society (TED, 2006). Personally, one of the greatest influences in my view of religion and science is the concept of the cynic or cynicism. Notably, through cynicism, one believes that the reason and purpose of life is to live in virtue and coincide with the requirements of nature around us. Just the same way the Ted talk highlighted on how the environment around their family was, it was the leading factor to her belief about religion and science.

Noteworthy, both religion and science are effective in providing us the facts concerning the world but in other cases, they oppose each other regarding some facts. In such cases, it will then entirely depend on the individual’s background and how their self-discovery journey dictated them to conduct themselves. Furthermore, as a cynic, through reasoning of the creatures, individuals are made able to gain happiness through an intense training as well as living in accordance with the natural order of life individually whereas declining every conventional lust for sex, wealth, and fame (McLuhan, 2015). In doing so, we attain our morals in religion since our lives are not dictated by material ownerships, but our individual believes. Hence, it drives us to lead a simple life that is not based on our possessions.

TED. (2006). Letting go of God | Julia Sweeney. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OtIyx687ytk

McLuhan, E. (2015). Cynic satire. Cambridge Scholars Publishing.

WEEK 3 DISCUSSION

The Problem of Evil

In our natural ways of living, it is evident that we all encounter the problem of evil where the reaction we offer is entirely dependent on our quest for what is best for our lives. Through our religious quest, we are made possible to evaluate any evil based on our ethical and moral perspectives on the type of evil we are faced with. In such a case, the problem of evil together with suffering amongst each of us in the world tends to pose a very serious and complex inquiry that challenges our belief on the existence of the perfect God (Nick Trakakis, N.D.). Moreover, the main challenge projected is if God were Omniscient, it means that He knows of all scenarios of the existence of evil among us. The Omnipotence of God questions about His mightiness and powerfulness when we are encountered with evils that cause horrible experiences to us and why He does not do something to eradicate all evil and sufferings in us.

Notably, since God is termed as all perfect both morally and ethically, it raises complexities on why He does allow evil to prevail and not do a thing about it. It is all clear that the world is filled up with evil and suffering and at the same time, God’s existence is conveyed to us by different individuals and in different ways. However, it is these facts regarding evil and suffering among living creatures that seem to conflict with the orthodox theists claim that a perfectly good God exists (Howard-Snyder, 2016). As a result of these challenges posed regarding whether God exists or not, it leads us to the conflict of the problem of evil. Logically understanding this issue, we cannot deny the existence of a supernatural being but the main concern is the intention and perfectness of this being. I believe in the existence of God and that all these evils faced are as a result of the natural order of life.

Howard-Snyder, D. (Ed.). (2016). The evidential argument from evil. Indiana University Press.

Nick Trakakis, (N.D.). The Evidential Problem of Evil; Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, Australian Catholic University, Australia. Retrieved from https://www.iep.utm.edu/evil-evi/

The Search

Unfortunately, I don’t have the ability to watch the NG series here in Korea. The Old Testament accounts for the story of the 10 plagues of Egypt. These plagues were used to force the Egyptian Pharaoh to release the Israelites. The Passover was a ceremony to be conducted by the Israelites in the manner described by God. This would serve as a sign for God’s people and the plague of the First Born would not befall upon them. This tradition has grown and is one of the most important rituals for observant Jews. Is it just an Old Testament practice? Jesus told his disciples “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer” (Luke 22:15). The Passover meal that Jesus desired is what we know today, as the Last Supper. Jesus kept the Passover in the New Testament times. Therefore, it isn’t just an Old Testament ritual.

I have never heard of the cult of Mithras before this class. Mithras is a name for the sun god of the Romans. Merriam-Webster defines a cult as a religion regarded as unorthodox or spurious. Based off that definition in my opinion most religions that we have today began a cult before it became widely accepted. I remember when the Jehovah’s Witnesses would come to our home as a child my parents referred to them as a cult. Now it’s an accepted well-known religion. I came across an article describing how to recognize a cult. The following article https://www.theatlantic.com/national/archive/2014/06/the-seven-signs-youre-in-a-cult/361400/ suggested a seven step method to identify cults. I believe in freedom of religion. We have the right to believe what we want if we don’t hinder or cause harm to others. I respect all religions who respect others. That’s why we have faith. Faith enables us to stand firm in those beliefs without “proof” so to speak.

InspiringPhilosophy. (2016, September 17). Jesus vs Mithra. Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=muM7Uk40iRE

Dan Gilgoff, (2011, April 18). Explain it to me: Passover Retrieved from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZlSVShBAVtw

History.com Editors. (2009, November 9). Passover. Retrieved from https://www.history.com/topics/holidays/passover

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