Friday, February 6, 2009

The War Prayer

The War Prayer by Mark Twain is one that invokes deeper thought than at first glance. When I was a college student preparing to become a teacher I was required to make an analysis of the essay, albeit subjective .

I'm not now a praying person but at the time I was struggling with my desire to understand the falsehoods I had discovered in religion and the teachings of my parents. I wanted to believe there was a god watching over me and that he would hear and answer my prayers.

The absurdity of prayer became crystal clear when, as in Twain's work, I took the time to consider the prayer and its implications. The youngest student in science learns early, Newton's third law of motion. Simply stated, for every action there is an equal and opposite reaction.

Now consider the act of praying...if, and I don't believe it is possible, there were a god who listened and answered prayers, what kind of god could he be? How would he decide who's prayer is answered?

Perhaps, Christians will say that righteousness wins out, that he who is good and obedient will ultimately, gain their reward. But may I propose:

Country A and Country B are at war.

Two very devout and pious mothers, each righteous and obedient, pray for the success of her son in that war. One, the mother of a soldier fighting for Country A; the other praying for her son from Country B. By all reason they are each deserving but how can they both receive that for which they ask? And, why should they? They are praying two prayers; one articulated to save her son and the unsaid prayer to destroy the other mother's son.


BEAST FCD said...

To put it in football terms.

Team A prays to God for divine assistance in the football match, Team B does the same. How does God choose? Toss a coin? More importantly, if a cosmic godfather does exist, would he ever care about the trivial, mundane matters such as a petty soccer match?

If we alleviate this scenario into a war situation, then the result will not be counted by the scoreline; rather, it becomes a body count. Who deserves to be killed? Why? Simply for annoying god for fighting on the wrong side of the fence?

Flip through the bible, and you will be able to envision this all-too-prevalent fact of religious upbringing: Sectarianism mixed with a potent sense of tribal superiority.

Beast FCD

BEAST FCD said...

This post of mine is similar, but a wee bit different from this post, but the relevant part deals with the irrationality of praying for divine favors.

Beast FCD

rick b said...

The problems with what you ask is, you do not know what the Bible teaches.

The Bible Teaches that God does not show favortism, so God is not going to say, side A wins the Game and not side B, or vice versa.

Then in your view of two waring countries, the problem is, Again, God does not favor one side over the other.

And just because you say both sides are praying and righteous does not mean anything. Just because we believe some one is just or righteous does not mean they are.

Also I have heard many people like you say, I do not believe in God, yet they turn around and say, I prayed to your God and He did not answer me, that proves He is not real.

Why does God need to do anything for you? If you reject Him, Mock Him, pretty much spit in His face, then question why your prayers are never answered.

The only prayer God answers for people who deny Him or reject Him or simply claim I do not believe He exists is, the prayer of repentance.

I can tell you growing up I was an atheist, and I prayed the prayer of, O God if you are real, then do this or that and I promise to follow you. I once had that prayer answered in a way that proved was from God, yet even though I prayed that prayer many times I still rejected God and denied Him.

So their are times that God does answer prayer for people who reject Him or deny he exists, But even when He does answer prayer, it means nothing if people simply chalk it up to nothing more than fate or luck. Rick b

BEAST FCD said...

Why is it that Christians like Rick often use the "I was once an atheist" condescending remark to denounce the atheist position?

And Rick, you also do not read your bible thoroughly. In the OT, you will read that God always favor the Christian tribes, allowing them to smite the unbelievers into smithereens.

The power of prayer is ambiguous; half the time it works, the rest doesn't. It is about the same as not praying.

Beast FCD

BEAST FCD said...

rick b said...

Beast said And Rick, you also do not read your bible thoroughly. In the OT, you will read that God always favor the Christian tribes, allowing them to smite the unbelievers into smithereens.

Your the one who needs to read better, Their was no Christan tribes. The NT says they were first called Christians in Antioch. Back in the OT is was Jews and gentiles.

And Yes God favored his people who followed him over those who denied Him, yet He did punish His own also. Rick b

BEAST FCD said...

Right. A mistake on my part. Saying that the Israelites are God's people will be more accurate.

Description aside, it is pretty evident that the God of the OT is cruel, vindictive and very morose. You can't find a more evil character than God of the bible.

Also, if you study history, Christians were responsible for many crimes against humanity, starting with anti-Semitism, to the Crusades against Islam, to the witch hunts in Europe and later exported to the Americas.

Beast FCD

rick b said...

Beast said Description aside, it is pretty evident that the God of the OT is cruel, vindictive and very morose. You can't find a more evil character than God of the bible.

Yet again this simply shows you do not know the Bible.

I see love and grace from God through out the OT. Here are a few examples.

When Adam and Eve Sinned, that was on them, God did not make them do it, But instead of killing them, He gave them a way out.

When God destroyed the earth by a flood, God gave every one 200 or so years as a warning about the flood coming, they all ignored the warning, If 200 years of warning the people is not loving than I do not know what is.

If you read the Book of Jonah, The reason Jonah ran away and did not want to go was because he knew God would spare them. It Even tells us in Jonah Chapter 4 that God spared them.

Yes God did allow people to be killed, But I have no problem with that, the people were so evil and they kept attacking Gods people I see nothing wrong with taking them out.

It is sorta like the example I gave a while back, Why is it, Hammas can throw 11,000 missiles into Israel and no one seems to care, Israel defends themselves and the entire world freaks out and blames Israel?

Then after the cease fire, who threw the first missile? Hammas, Does anyone seem to care or say anything? No. Yet once Israel Fights back, the world will again freak out.

Then when you said this, Also, if you study history, Christians were responsible for many crimes against humanity, starting with anti-Semitism, to the Crusades against Islam, to the witch hunts in Europe and later exported to the Americas.

I do not deny this, but as I said before, Not everyone who claims to be a christian really is, and the Bible states that.

But then to turn it to you, I do not know of any Religious person or Christian who performs Abortions.

Yet we kill Millions of babies every year, and I would guess the majority are Atheists doing this.

And to pull a babys head out while alive and shove a knife or something into it's skull to kill it or inject a saline solution and burn it is cruel, Just as cruel if not more so, and you guys justify it, and you bring up the Crusades against Islam or witch hunts. Yes those were wrong, but so is killing unborn babies in such a cruel way. Rick b

BEAST FCD said...

Actually, dude, abortions happen in states where people are more isn't the atheists who are doing all the abortions.

The problem with abortion I have is ignorance: People just don't know, or have a strong prejudice against contraceptive tools. Abortion should be minimized as much as possible, since it is a form of surgery, and like all surgeries, it should be minimized.

Too bad the Churches aren't listening.

Beast FCD

BEAST FCD said...

With regards to Hamas and Israel, the reason for this continuing conflict is a result of an ancient vendetta that has been allowed to persist because religion has poisoned the politics over there. I have no support for either side, and I believe the Israelis are no saints either.

The latest news seems to indicate that the IDF are using chemical weapons against civilians, which is against UN law.

Beast FCD

BEAST FCD said...

Sure, Rick, Christians who commit atrocities ain't true Christians....Just as Michael Phelps is not a true athlete cos he smokes cannabis.

Beast FCD

BEAST FCD said...

Regarding the Noah's Ark, of course we know such a thing never happened. But just for argument's sake, how can a loving god unleash a cataclysmic flood to kill every god damned life on land and still claim to be loving?

If Hitler killed 6 million JEws we call him a demon, if God kills all life on the planet we venerate him and kiss his big fat ass.

Trying to blame humanity for every damn disaster is silly, because if Man is to be blamed then God is just as guilty for creating us.

Beast FCD

rick b said...

I know you deny the flood, but going off the idea that it is true, God created us, He can do with as as he pleases. Hilter Did not create any one, Then as I said, God warned everyone for 200 or so years, If they listended they would not have been killed.

How come, We as humans can warn a person, or a state or country or nation, Stop doing what your doing, Like maybe starting a war, or trying to break into your house or whatever, and then if the person or people refuses to listen we harm them or defended ourselves and thats ok. But not with God.

Then your idea about Phelps smoking Pot is lame, Here in the US, We have had cases in various states where a person dresses up as a cop and pulls people over, and they are not real cops, yet someone who smokes pot, thats more a matter of either doing something stupid or breaking the law.

That person, who smokes pot, is still an athlete because they never sighed a contract giving a break down of everything in their life they will or will not do.

As I said before, the bible does state, if you do these things, your not really one of us. rick b

BEAST FCD said...


rick b said...

When you answered the Question about Israel and Hammas, I never asked you why are they fighting, that was the answer you gave, I asked, why does everyone turn a blind Eye when Israel gets attacked and innocent women and Children and even tourists die.

But as soon as Israel fights back, the Whole World crys out againt them like they started it or something. In reality I dont expect an answer or think you could give one, because you dont believe the Bible, which gives the answer.

I just wanted to point out that Israel is pretty much hated by the entire world and everyone can fight against them or attack them, but they cannot fight back. Rick b

Interested said...

Rick said: "He can do with as as he pleases."

But to what avail? Why would anyone create a group of living beings in "his own image" and not make them perfect? It makes no sense unless we conceed that he was and is not perfect. If he were and he did indeed create us we too would be perfect. Either he created a cruel and sensless game or he doesn't exist.

rick b said...

He created us Perfect, yet We were the Ones who Fell. While we were created perfect, we still choose to Disobey Him and then through the fall we were corrupted. That was not Gods will or choice, but He allowed it since He did not create robots.

The Bible even tells us, We are the Clay, He is the Potter, and Just like when we mold Clay, it cannot say to us, Why did you create me as a toilet or Why did you make me like...

Like it or not, were here now and we will answer to Him some day. Funny thing is, the Bible tells us, Every person will bow to Him and confess He is God. So like it or not or believe it or not, You and beast can claim all you want, It will never happen and I am wrong.

But some day, you two and all other Atheists will Bow to Him and confess He is God and then sadly be tossed out of His presence. rick b

BEAST FCD said...

Yak yak yak yak yak....Rick's arguments are so utterly old and insipid that I do not wish to debunk them anymore.

With regards to Israelis, the bottom line is this: What would you say if the roles are reversed, i.e Arabs attacking Israelis? I am quite sure you would be taking the side of the Jews.

As a secular humanist, I am not taking sides, except for civilians. Both sides are both culpable for wartime atrocities. That's that.

As for god, if he exists, let him speak for himself, Rick. Having you say the same nonsense which I have to debunk in Interested's every post is really boring. Please say something new, like, Rick's doing pole dancing, and the like.

Beast FCD

rick b said...

Beast said Having you say the same nonsense which I have to debunk in Interested's every post is really boring.

Boy Beast, I see your a comedian also, to bad your so blind. rick b

BEAST FCD said...

I am a comedian, but I am not blind. I can give you a head shot with a sniper rifle from 500 yards.

Beast FCD

rick b said...

You can shoot a gun, Wooo hoooo, Your a big boy now. Rick b

BEAST FCD said...

I served my country's navy a long time back.....and back then when I hit a target at a hundred yards I didn't even have a scope on my AR-15.

My vision is almost perfect (Minus my nightblindness condition) so don't fuck around with me.

Beast FCD

BEAST FCD said...

Explain this, Rick.

Beast FCD

BEAST FCD said...

One more thing, Rick:

I don't hate the Israelis as a nation: I guess they are pretty fucked as they are, living with neighbors who seem hell-bent at annihilating their entire race. They are probably the only nation on this planet faced with so many enemies eager at destroying them, so they can do with one less hatred.

Speaking of which, the Israelis are not angels themselves. The Israeli army indoctrinates its troops to treat the Palestinians as sub human, and in this latest conflict there has been evidence that the IDF have been using chemical weapons as well.

Hamas and Hizbollah are themselves guilty of spreading the conflict. The conclusion is, there are no saints on both sides of the fans, and the innocent civilians are the ones who are getting pulverized for the sake of religion.

Beast FCD

Gracie said...

Hey so beast, you need to get over yourself. I mean I believe in God, so obviously I disagree with you. But if there is a God, who are you to blame him? I think that God is love and truth and the Devil is hate and evil. The whole point of dying and going to heaven is that we are sinners, and God cannot touch impurity, so we have to repent in order to get there. I think that the devil is responsible for all the evils in the world. Also you question God's love for us. Why would God give us his only son to die and be in excruciating pain for our sins, all so that we would have a bridge to heaven, if he was cruel and evil?

Rick, you need to get over yourself too. Don't be so unaccepting. You really should listen to both sides of the argument. This way you can find the real questions to ask God, and there is no way to grow as a christian if you do not question God. I mean, how do you find if you do not seek? Did Jesus, the most holy man ever to walk the Earth, not question God on the cross?