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AndyGeers

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About AndyGeers

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  1. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    I would suggest that perhaps you're making the mistake of thinking the Bible was written in English - the Hebrew word translated 'day' can just as easily mean 'age'. Indeed, in the very next chapter, Genesis 2, the same word is used to described the entire 'week': "in the *day* that the Lord God made the earth and the heavens" (2:4) which shows that it's not a modern imposition to try and claim the day doesn't always mean a literal 24-hour period.
  2. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    I don't particularly want to get into a debate about 6 day creationism, but for what it's worth, I think it's okay to read the creation account as metaphorical if it presents itself as metaphorical within the text itself. e.g. Genesis 1:2 "The earth was without form and empty" - two problems: formless, empty. So then if you make a chart of days 1-6, they break down quite nicely: +---------------------+-------------------------------------+ | FORM | FILLING | +---------------------+-------------------------------------+ | 1. Day & Night | 4. Sun & Moon | | 2. Sea & Sky | 5. Fish & Birds | | 3. Dry land | 6. Land animals, humans | +---------------------+-------------------------------------+ Which suggests that the order of the days of creation isn't necessarily intended to be taken literally. The overall message of the chapters is still clear, though: there is ONE God who created absolutely everything without a struggle - that's very different from other Ancient Near East creation accounts written around the same era.
  3. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    If anybody cares, the results of the survey have now gone up on my blog: http://www.oldtestamentadventures.com/2011/03/12/what-game-developers-think-about-the-bible/
  4. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    The brilliant thing about Christianity is that it's the easiest religion to disprove - it's rooted in history, in the life, death and resurrection of Jesus. All you'd have to do - all the authorities back in the first century would have had to have done - is produce the body, and you've instantly discredited Christianity. The Apostle Paul says that if Jesus didn't rise from the dead but stayed dead then our whole faith is worthless and we may as well pack our bags and go home. Christianity is UNIQUE in being able to be disproved in this way. Nobody can vouch for whether Mohammed really did receive a vision from Gabriel up on the mountain. Same for other religions. But Jesus either did die and rise again or he didn't. And if he did, then he is uniquely qualified to teach us what exists beyond the grave because he's been there. No more speculation. No more guessing. It all centres around whether those events really happened or not, and that's really where you need to invest your energy if you intend to do any research, IMHO.
  5. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    at the end of the day, I think the hard truth is that however great and moral and good we may look (and what a wonderful example of goodness that would be if they did spend their lives that way, loving that kid!) we still can never make ourselves good enough for God - the standard is absolute 100% perfection, a level of goodness we can never attain to. Even in the example of such a loving couple, can you honestly imagine that they're never going to have days where they feel frustrated at their child, at one another, where there's never going to be a harsh word spoken when they're tired? Just as Peter knew that it was impossible for a sinful man like him to stand in the presence of a holiness like that of Jesus, when we finally meet God and stand before him we will KNOW that he's too pure for us to stand. We simply cannot make ourselves good enough, however we try. The ONLY hope is if we're judged on the merits of another person in our place - a substitute, like Jesus, the one who was sinless and pure and who COULD stand before God and be vindicated. So ultimately is it fair for God to judge that couple, despite all their loveliness and goodness? As hard as it is to say it, the Bible says yes. Not because they had a few facts wrong about God, "a wrong version of God" as you put it. But because deep down they're also deeply flawed human beings who aren't as perfectly lovely and good as first appear.
  6. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    The world looks at a couple who devote their lives to raising a disabled kid or something and calls that "good". But look at it from another angle: they lived their lives doing what they felt like. Explicitly in your example, you've said that they weren't motivated by a desire to please God, but because it seemed good to them to live that way. Well, that's the very definition of sin in the Bible, even if coincidentally their choice of "what they felt like" happened to seem very "moral".
  7. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    It's interesting, however, how often that was exactly the response of people who hung around with Jesus: e.g. when Jesus helps Peter catch a huge haul of fish, his reaction is to cry "Depart from me, for I am a sinful man, O Lord" To recognise that we deserve nothing is definitely not to say that nothing I do or say matters - far from it! Knowing how much I've been forgiven, how gracious God has been, is a huge motivator to then get out there and share that forgiveness and love with others. As I read it, the Bible is quite explicit that God's salvation is not because I'm "worthy" of it, but simply because God is generous and wants to forgive people who are totally UNworthy. e.g. when Israel is about to go in to the promised land, right after God has told them they're to be his chosen people, he says "It was not because you were more in number than any other people that the Lord set his love on you and chose you, for you were the fewest of all people, but it is because the Lord loves you" and then a bit later "Know, therefore, that the Lord your God is not giving you this good land to possess because of your righteousness, for you are a stubborn people". The same idea is repeated in the New Testament in passages like Ephesians 2: "so that no one may boast".
  8. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    I think the perspective that helps on some of these issues that NONE of us deserve to spend eternity with God - as soon as we're able to choose between right and wrong, we all pretty quickly discover the delights of choosing the wrong. You never have to teach a kid to lie, for instance, or to be selfish with their toys. Christians don't think they're "better" than anybody else - we know we don't deserve to spend eternity with God any more than the next person. If "fair" is what you want then what's fair is for *everybody* to get what they ask for and spend an eternity without God's friendship - we're not slow to make it known that that's what we want. It's ridiculously gracious of God to let anybody off at all - and since he has provided a way for that to happen, through the sacrificial death of Jesus, to reject that one way he's provided leaves you in no position to start moaning about unfairness. As for babies, I suggest you're probably just using this as a smokescreen to dismiss Christianity without giving it a serious hearing. No parent who loved their child AND loved God would think it preferable to kill their baby rather than giving that baby a chance to grow up and know the joy of living in relationship with God.
  9. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    Trouble is, in the Bible, Jesus says that there are no other paths. Of course he may be wrong... But if he is wrong then I can't really see how the Bible is a very good roadmap!! If your map omitted a major highway you'd throw it out, you wouldn't keep using it.
  10. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    I would love to understand more why people are feeling this way - after all, the survey deliberately invites you to *disagree* with any statement it makes. Can you give an example of a point where I assume you're a Christian?
  11. AndyGeers

    Proof God doesn't exist?

    If you frame the debate in such derogatory language then of course it doesn't make sense that rational people would believe it. But how about you rephrased it like this: 1.) We were granted the gift of life by an omnipotent ruler who had no obligation to do so 2.) The whole reason we were given life was to live in relationship with that generous ruler, and yet we ignore him and live as though he wasn't there 3.) That ruler went out of his way to call us back to him by stepping into his own creation, taking on human form and suffering the consequences of our rejection in our place, and yet STILL we ignore him 4.) That ruler eventually gives people what they ask for and puts them out of his presence forever, but graciously allows those who accept his rescue to be in his presence forever Of course, that's also a pretty biased way of presenting it, but hopefully you will see that it's simplistic at best to say "I can phrase this in a way that sounds ridiculous and that's sufficient reason to dismiss all those who believe it as loons"
  12. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    I can't help but feel that this thread is at severe risk of going way off course...
  13. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    I suspect you're right - but do you think that's just reflective of intellectual/well educated people generally? Or do you think it's something about the computer programming / engineering mindset specifically? I only ask this because I was a student at Cambridge University where there's a disproportionately HIGH number of Christians, the vast majority of whom (at least in my circles) are from more scientific disciplines rather than the arty ones.
  14. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    Surveying game developers is not a meaningful way to understand the interests of gamers. [/quote] Yes, but my blog is more for game developers than for gamers.
  15. AndyGeers

    Survey: What do you think about the Bible?

    Agreed. I stumbled my way through it but some of my answers aren't going to be very useful as they're the lesser invalid choice of a number of invalid choices. For instance the school question I could only answer from a historical 25 years ago POV which I'm guessing wasn't the intent of the question. [/quote] Thanks for the feedback. I agree that I could have been clearer in terms of separating out *current* habits from historic habits. Partly I was limited by the fact that SurveyMonkey only lets you have 10 questions before you have to upgrade to a paid account. That's no excuse however.
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