a few sites

Mr. Taylor
If you want to continue trashing Christian’s go right ahead, I’m right there with you. I’ve been burned by some myself.
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You are incorrect to suppose I am “trashing Christians.” I am merely stating historic facts, backed up by copious and well-documented evidence, both contemporary from the words of the individuals concerned, and from authoritative histories by respected scholars from accredited institutions.

If you consider that Christianity is being “trashed” by my stating these facts, then it is “trashing” itself.

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When the bible is concerned, however, when considering the evidence for or against, the finality is faith on both sides of the issue. Yes, your rejection of the authority of the bible is based on faith even for you Mr. Taylor.

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I have amply covered this in one of my recent Es (which you may not have read, or if so, obviously not carefully), so I will pass on. However, my “rejection” is based on the factual evidence, as opposed to blind, unreasoning “faith” — which I personally have no faith in.

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My faith survives books like Jesus Interrupted by Bart Ehrman, who certainly comes across sounding like he knows what he’s talking about when all his book really is is his own bias disguised as textual criticism. Really just textual manipulation actually.

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As to tour faith, it is not an issue (for me at least). As I said, it is your right under the Constitution.

However, it is instructive to note that in your opinion, Professor Ehrman, PhD, a distinguished scholar who was educated at Princeton Theological Seminary, Moody Bible Institute, and Wheaton College, a world-reknowned and acknowledged leading New Testament scholar, an expert in the field, who holds the James A. Gray Distinguished Professor of Religious Studies at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and who has written and edited over twenty-five books, including three college textbooks and four NYT bestsellers is merely a “textual manipulator.” Fascinating!

Pray, sir, please be so kind as to share with me your own doubtless equally distinguished scholarly credentials that enabled you to discern this, when so many distinguished scholars around the world seem to have missed it?

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You claim to be defending all those defenseless recruits from “wolves in sheep’s clothing” religious people but really from what it looks like it’s mainly those that call themselves Christians you’re worried about.

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“Who call themselves Christians?” Now, as with your earlier comment on racism, we seem to be getting to the heart of the matter. You, (like the Dominionists) seem to feel that it’s up to you to decide who is and who isn’t really a Christian. Who died and left you god? I seem to have missed that announcement. That, sir, is exactly what the Framers were concerned about. See my last for details, and as Madison said;

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“Who does not see that the same authority which can establish Christianity, in exclusion of all other religions, may establish with the same ease any particular sect of Christians, in exclusion of all other sects.”

I’ll say again, when the behavior gets out of line I’ll back you up 100% but going after a cadet’s dry erase board??? REALLY don’t you have better things to do with your apparently unlimited time?

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I guarantee you I will defend the Constitution I swore to uphold and defend whenever it is breached, and I don’t consider that there is anything better to do with my time.

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You may have chosen to write off the bible’s inconvenient truth but I choose not to based on evidential faith that is at least as good as the “evidence” you have in your arsenal to try and trash it.

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As I have stated from the beginning, you are welcome to believe in whatever you wish. Nobody is disputing that. That is your Constitutional right — just as it is for everyone else in this country.

As to the bible’s truth or otherwise, I don’t find it the least bit inconvenient, because I don’t think of it as anything other than another religious text, like many others through the millennia — interesting from a scholastic and theological POV, but I no more believe it is entirely truthful or based on fact than I believe in the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus, or the Cosmic Muffin — which I am likewise free to do, thanks to our Constitution.

Your phrase “evidentiary faith” is an oxymoron. There is “evidence” (which is based on facts), and there is “faith” (which is based on belief). They are two entirely separate matters.

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Agnostic types are plentiful so you’re not the first one I’ve interacted with and even used to be one myself when I was very young.

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And “religious types” are even more plentiful. I have also been an agnostic since I was very young — and have found no reason to alter my opinion since that time.

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You sent me a bunch of web sites so here are a few for you. My assortment is not nearly as extensive as yours

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Looking them over, I find it is nothing I haven’t seen before in the way of Christian apologetics (many of them far more qualified and better written than these), and since some emanate from groups who are either Dominionist or Reconstructionist in nature, I can’t imagine how or why you think I would be swayed by their pathetic arguments.

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since I don’t have as much time to sit around and continue to formulate opinions to support my conclusions since I’m not collecting a check from the government to pay my bills. which you may or may not be (as a taxpayer you’re welcome by the way if you are collecting one – I’ll remind you that I thank you for, you, what was likely voluntary, service – unless you were conscripted in which case I’m sorry for that).

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In the first place, I don’t “formulate opinions to support my conclusions” — I leave that to those who cannot support their opinion with documented facts and citations (such as I use to support my opinions), and instead rely on “faith” and “belief” based on magical thinking.

As it happens, I am collecting a government check (which goes only a short way towards “paying my bills”), but while I certainly do thank you for your contribution to the common weal, I don’t feel I am somehow obligated to you, because I (like all servicemen and women) paid taxes both while in the service — except for the time I was in Vietnam, when my munificent government pay of less than $1538 (for the entire 13 months) was tax-free — for those of us who lived to collect it.

After I was invalided out, I worked for over 30 years in the private sector, and paid taxes there as well. In retirement now, I still pay local, state and federal taxes.
So your point is…?

I was indeed a volunteer, as were all my forbears. I volunteered for the Marines, for Vietnam, and for a combat MOS and duty (after being given a relatively safe clerical job). I also volunteered to go back to Khe Sanh, where all hell had broken loose with the eruption of the Tet Offensive of 1968 , when I was released from the hospital — even though I was scheduled for 30 more days in recuperation.

As to my reasons, I can guarantee you I wasn’t in it for the money. My first pay was under $90 — for the month. When I was invalided out, my pay had risen (based on my rank and years of service) to the princely sum of $704.40. I wanted to serve and protect my country and our way of life, including our Constitution. That remains my motivation.

However, I do like the left-handed “thank-you for your service, but you can thank me for your pay-check” crack. Very deft.. or do I mean daft. Did you ever stop to think that your ability to earn your pay depended on the men and women who were serving then and now? (BTW, I still haven’t heard about your own military credentials, if any. You must have a great knowledge of the military in order to be able to decide what is and isn’t a problem.)

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Despite your concerns I can assure you that we have much more to worry about in Barrack Obama and what he and his ilk are doing to America

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And what, pray tell would that be? Trying to provide the poor, sick, and needy (including many women and children) of this country and elsewhere with food, medicine, and shelter? How heinous!! How frightening!! He sounds like another commie agitator I heard of. (One of them damned Jews, of course!) He went around healing the sick, clothing the naked, and feeding the hungry too — but the Romans had a solution for commie agitators like that! They crucified him, and doubtless it served him right!

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than we do from 99% of mostly well meaning misguided Christians.

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I think you’ll find the number who subscribe to Dominion theology are larger than you believe — or would find, if you’d do any of the suggested research.
As to well-meaning, misguided Christians, they can be a nuisance, but it is the blind and would-be murderous zealots seeking political power who are the main concern.

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Despite historical tragedies like the holocaust, which you erroneously and feebly want to pin on some kind of mythical connection Hitler had with the church (when he was likely an occultist)

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“mythical” ???? “erroneously and feebly”???

DID YOU EVEN READ WHAT HITLER HIMSELF SAID AND WROTE, SIR ????

As usual, I sent you copious documents and cited examples, and you respond with THIS???? Talk about “erroneous and feeble”!!
Again (as usual), you respond not with facts or documented evidence, but what you “believe” or what was “likely” or what some other (equally uniformed) person told you or that you read somewhere in some Christian apologist’s revision of history!!!

I suppose you think Martin Luther (whose quotes I also gave you, and who Hitler stated and wrote that he greatly admired) was an “occultist” too, and that I “erroneously and feebly” tried to “pin some kind of mythical connection with the church” on him also by sending you his exact words????

The Holocaust was not an “historical tragedy” — it was the end result of 1900 years of vicious and unrelenting Christian dogma and hatred of the Jews, who they blamed for killing the (ironically) Jewish rabbi who they believed was a god.

Beginning with Saul of Tarsus and going right up on through Martin Luther and on through Hitler, this dogma and hatred continues unabated in many Christian churches to this very day. (I have personally heard it preached from the pulpit.)

They blamed all Jews, men women and children, not just the Sanhedrin of the time, and for all time — they blamed and still blame Jews who had not even been alive at the time.

“Historical tragedy” my maiden aunt!

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I hate to think of what the last several hundred years would have been like without the restraining influences you so eagerly want to try and blame for most of the worlds ill’s.

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WHAT “restraining influences”? The “restraining influences” that were behind the slaughter of Hypatia and many other brilliant people, and destruction of the Library of Alexandria, and many other aspects of the great Greco-Roman cultural heritage because they were “pagan”? The Crusades (including those against Christian “heretics” like the Cathars and Arians)? The many “martyrdoms” and wars involving one group of Christians merrily slaughtering others for ridiculous differences of opinion? The “restraining influences” that led the Western nations to slaughter, conquer and exploit other less technologically or militarily advanced places and peoples around the world, usually at least partly in the name of their “god”? The “restraining influences” that launched the pogroms against the Jews and others over the millennia?

And you think things could have somehow been worse than the last two millennia of endless bloodshed, slaughter, and horror, much of it in the name of Christianity or some other religion, under another belief (or no) system???? What color is the sky on your planet???

I will agree that humans being what they are, things would not be likely to have been much better under any other religion — or even no religion.
However I will NOT agree that they have somehow been “better” just because a follower of some particular flavor of religion “believes” it to be so.

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I do pray though that you somehow find fulfillment in you restlessness but this will be unlikely with you current focus.

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Thanks, but I don’t need your prayers, as I don’t believe in either the practice or your deity.

As for “fulfillment” — while I don’t expect that what the MRFF is doing is going to prevail or change the world or humanity, which (religious or not) has a grievous history of stupidity, greed and murder, there’s a certain amount of fulfillment in standing up for the Constitution and for reason over superstition. That will have to do for me.

Sincerely,

F. J. Taylor

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