God vs Human Rights

The Pixie

Well-known member
This was touched upon in another thread recently.

On the on hand we have the basic human right to freedom of religion:

Article 9: Freedom of thought, conscience and religion
1. Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching practice and observance.

On the other we have God saying:

Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.
4 “You shall not make for yourself [c]an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not worship them nor serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, inflicting the [d]punishment of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing [e]favor to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

Furthermore, many Christians seem to believe that anyone who fails to love and worship God will feel his wrath and will be punished by suffering in hell.

That is to say, anyone exercising their basic human right to freedom to religion will get tortured by God for doing so. Given the number of non-Christians who have died, this makes God the biggest human rights abuser ever.

I am curious how Christians relate this to the idea that "God is love".
 

Gus Bovona

Well-known member
This was touched upon in another thread recently.

On the on hand we have the basic human right to freedom of religion:

Article 9: Freedom of thought, conscience and religion
1. Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching practice and observance.

On the other we have God saying:

Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.
4 “You shall not make for yourself [c]an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not worship them nor serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, inflicting the [d]punishment of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing [e]favor to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

Furthermore, many Christians seem to believe that anyone who fails to love and worship God will feel his wrath and will be punished by suffering in hell.

That is to say, anyone exercising their basic human right to freedom to religion will get tortured by God for doing so. Given the number of non-Christians who have died, this makes God the biggest human rights abuser ever.

I am curious how Christians relate this to the idea that "God is love".
Correction, it's only some who exercise their right to freedom of religion that will suffer consequences. Those who choose Christianity will suffer/enjoy different consequences.
 

Ontos

Active member
You're dichotomy conflates what a human can do, with what a human should do.

And you haven't justified why God is obligated to what you can do.
 

Howie

Well-known member
This was touched upon in another thread recently.

On the on hand we have the basic human right to freedom of religion:

Article 9: Freedom of thought, conscience and religion
1. Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching practice and observance.

On the other we have God saying:

Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.
4 “You shall not make for yourself [c]an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not worship them nor serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, inflicting the [d]punishment of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing [e]favor to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

Furthermore, many Christians seem to believe that anyone who fails to love and worship God will feel his wrath and will be punished by suffering in hell.

That is to say, anyone exercising their basic human right to freedom to religion will get tortured by God for doing so. Given the number of non-Christians who have died, this makes God the biggest human rights abuser ever.

I am curious how Christians relate this to the idea that "God is love".
First of all, Human Rights are a human notion. They do not Trump God's right.

The contemporary assertion, God is Love is dangerous, not that God isn't love, He is. It is dangerous because it diminishes God's other attributes, particularly those on the other end of the love spectrum; namely, God is wrath, God is Anger, God is Just, God is righteous (right) etc.

One must understand that God is all of His attributes, in all their fullness, always. None of His attributes is greater in intensity, than any other of His attributes.
 

stiggy wiggy

Well-known member
That is to say, anyone exercising their basic human right to freedom to religion will get tortured by God for doing so.

So you decided to bring your miserable failure to a brand new thread, I see. Still coming up empty-handed finding a Bible verse stating that God tortures? Oh, that' right, the Bible doesn't say it, "Christianity"does, so let me rephrase that: Still coming up empty-handed finding a single CARM Christian stating that God tortures?

And incidentally, there are a lot of God's commands that are not codified into secular law. For example, He does not expect Americans to confess their sins over a goat and then exile the goat to the Mojave Desert.
 

SteveB

Well-known member
This was touched upon in another thread recently.

On the on hand we have the basic human right to freedom of religion:

Article 9: Freedom of thought, conscience and religion
1. Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching practice and observance.

Yes. In fact you do indeed have the right to think however you want. Including if your thinking will lead you to your destruction.
God is gracious enough to warn you that your way will destroy you.

On the other we have God saying:

Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.
4 “You shall not make for yourself [c]an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not worship them nor serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, inflicting the [d]punishment of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing [e]favor to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.
Yep.
YHVH knows (because he created us in his own likeness and image) that his ways are the healthiest for us. His ways will lead us to eternal life, away from eternal death and destruction.


Furthermore, many Christians seem to believe that anyone who fails to love and worship God will feel his wrath and will be punished by suffering in hell.
It's a pity you never actually ask where we get this from, and continue to spew out your own bias and preconceptions about this issue.


That is to say, anyone exercising their basic human right to freedom to religion will get tortured by God for doing so. Given the number of non-Christians who have died, this makes God the biggest human rights abuser ever.
That is your right to believe lies. You are after all entitled to your own opinions, even though they'll lead you to your eternal demise, and destruction.

I'm curious if there's ever a point where you ask why, instead of continuing to believe lies that will destroy you.


I am curious how Christians relate this to the idea that "God is love".
Simple.

He cares enough to warn us about the dangers we face, and how to escape them.

If that's not loving, I don't know what is.

If I were to have followed your logic as a child, I would've been dead by the time I was 5-7 years old. Maybe younger.
Definitely 8 years old, because that's when I figured out that I could stick a fork in a live electric socket. Although, I think running out in the middle of a busy street, with lots of cars traveling at 40-50 mph as a 4 year old could've done it too. Maybe even sticking my face in front of a sparkler cone fireworks would've achieved that when I was 3.

So.... yes.
You are indeed entitled to your own thoughts. Even if it means that you kill yourself and cause great harm to those who love you.

Oh, I encourage you to have a talk with your parents about this one. I'm sure that if they're still alive, they'd have something important to tell you.
 

J regia

Well-known member
He cares enough to warn us about the dangers we face, and how to escape them.

If that's not loving, I don't know what is.

If I were to have followed your logic as a child, I would've been dead by the time I was 5-7 years old. Maybe younger.
Definitely 8 years old, because that's when I figured out that I could stick a fork in a live electric socket. Although, I think running out in the middle of a busy street, with lots of cars traveling at 40-50 mph as a 4 year old could've done it too. Maybe even sticking my face in front of a sparkler cone fireworks would've achieved that when I was 3.
So when did your god warn you not to stick a fork into a power socket or not to run out onto a busy street?

And do other gods also warn other children not to stick a fork into a power socket or not to run out onto a busy street?
 

SteveB

Well-known member
So when did your god warn you not to stick a fork into a power socket or not to run out onto a busy street?
I never said that YHVH warned me about those things.


And do other gods also warn other children not to stick a fork into a power socket or not to run out onto a busy street?
I wouldn't know. Why don't you ask yourself.
 

The Pixie

Well-known member
You're dichotomy conflates what a human can do, with what a human should do.
Can you expand on that? As far as I can see, this is about what humans should be allowed to do.

Human rights say humans should be allowed to worship who ever they like or no one at all.

God says humans should NOT be allowed to worship who ever they like or no one at all.

And you haven't justified why God is obligated to what you can do.
It is not about obligation as such, it is about the big gulf between what humans agree is a basic human right and what God says. I am pointing oput that God's position is diametrically opposite to what most people agree is the morally right position.

That said, I am only guessing that you think people should have the basic human right to freedom of religion.
 

The Pixie

Well-known member
First of all, Human Rights are a human notion. They do not Trump God's right.
Hilarious you capitalised "Trump" there.

I get what you are saying. God is all-powerful, and if he wants to torture people for not worshiping him, who is going to stop him, right?

But really, that misses the point. The issue here is that most people agree that freedom of religion is a human right - even if it is a human notion. I am pointing out that what most people consider to be a human right is diametrically opposite to what the Christian God supposedly does, which indicates the Christian God is the worst human rights abuser in history.

It is like China. China has some big human rights violations. We can complain about it all we like, but sadly that will not trump the fact that China is a world super-power and can do what it likes. However, we can note that the Chinese regime is morally bad because it routinely abuses human rights.

The contemporary assertion, God is Love is dangerous, not that God isn't love, He is. It is dangerous because it diminishes God's other attributes, particularly those on the other end of the love spectrum; namely, God is wrath, God is Anger, God is Just, God is righteous (right) etc.
God is kind of in a way love, to some degree. Got it.

That is how he can torture billions for failing to love him.
 

The Pixie

Well-known member
Yes. In fact you do indeed have the right to think however you want. Including if your thinking will lead you to your destruction.
So you are saying you have the freedom to worship who you like, but if you choose not to worship God, you get punished.

Using that doublethink, the Soviets allowed freedom of religion. You could certainly worship whoever you like. If they found out, you would be arrested and thrown in a gulag, but you certainly had the right to worship.

God is gracious enough to warn you that your way will destroy you.
I have yet to have such a warning from God, so I must be fine.

It's a pity you never actually ask where we get this from, and continue to spew out your own bias and preconceptions about this issue.
And obviously you cannot reveal where you get it from unless someone asks you directly because....

Er, because, er.... reasons.

He cares enough to warn us about the dangers we face, and how to escape them.

If that's not loving, I don't know what is.
No, you really don't, Steve.

If I were to have followed your logic as a child, I would've been dead by the time I was 5-7 years old. Maybe younger.
Definitely 8 years old, because that's when I figured out that I could stick a fork in a live electric socket. Although, I think running out in the middle of a busy street, with lots of cars traveling at 40-50 mph as a 4 year old could've done it too. Maybe even sticking my face in front of a sparkler cone fireworks would've achieved that when I was 3.
That is a wonderful straw man Steve. Utterly unrelated to anything I said, but why let that stop you when you are in mid-rant.

Oh, I encourage you to have a talk with your parents about this one. I'm sure that if they're still alive, they'd have something important to tell you.
Just to be clear, my parents never threatened to torture me if I failed to love them.

I take it yours did?
 

The Pixie

Well-known member
FYI, the right to religious freedom is found in US Constitution. It is not found in God's.
Both SteveB and stiggywiggy have liked this comment, and I am curious why. It is just reinforcing the OP - that there is this gulf between human rights and God.

Are you saying that because the principle of freedom of worship is not found in the Bible, that makes it okay for God to torture people who choose not to worship him? Not getting it.
 

Beloved Daughter

Super Member
This was touched upon in another thread recently.

On the on hand we have the basic human right to freedom of religion:

Article 9: Freedom of thought, conscience and religion
1. Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching practice and observance.

On the other we have God saying:

Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.
4 “You shall not make for yourself [c]an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not worship them nor serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, inflicting the [d]punishment of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing [e]favor to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

Furthermore, many Christians seem to believe that anyone who fails to love and worship God will feel his wrath and will be punished by suffering in hell.

That is to say, anyone exercising their basic human right to freedom to religion will get tortured by God for doing so. Given the number of non-Christians who have died, this makes God the biggest human rights abuser ever.

I am curious how Christians relate this to the idea that "God is love".

This is tedious.

It appears (and forgive me if I'm wrong) that you have your own idea of what a loving God would/should do. I don't find that to be unusual. Everyone has some thoughts on this.

I recently heard a sermon, that puts it all in perspective.

In case you haven't figured it out, the world (our planet) is a highly dangerous place. Volcanoes, Tidal Waves, Earthquakes, Pestilence, Killer viruses, and other bugs/germs that harm us. Relentless diseases plague us. Snakes, alligators, bears and hissing reptiles inhabit the world. Global warming is coming and the Bible speaks of it:

2 Peter 3:5-10

5 For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, 6 through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water. 7 But by His word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.


8 But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. 9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.


10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.

This is the creation of God. He uses it for his own purposes.

I cannot find any conflict between our Constitutional right to freedom of religion and God's admonishment against idolatry.

Christians do believe in hell and we can generalize who might be headed that way. Now me, I leave that judgment to God. I'm far too sinful to make such judgments.

I don't know your story or what may have hurt and wounded you. I will pray for you.

My cousin is the infamous Dan Barker from the Freedom From Religion Foundation. He still doesn't get it. He has had every blessing one could hope for and yet he complains and rages at God.

Many Christians say "we live in a fallen world", but it's easily said. The truth is the world in scary place. It is also true that God does love you, but you still live in a world He created for his own purposes.

From the Apostle Paul:

Ephesians 1:1-11

New American Standard Bible 1995

1 Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God,
To the saints who are at Ephesus and who are faithful in Christ Jesus: 2 Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love 5 He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. 7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of His grace 8 which He lavished on us. In all wisdom and insight 9 He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His kind intention which He purposed in Him 10 with a view to an administration suitable to the fullness of the times, that is, the summing up of all things in Christ, things in the heavens and things on the earth. In Him 11 also we have obtained an inheritance, having been predestined according to His purpose who works all things after the counsel of His will,


This is the same Paul who was imprisoned, beat and assaulted for preaching the Word of God.

Thanks to Dr. John MacArthur in his sermon, Why does God allow so much their suffering and evil?

The sermon in question:

 

Beloved Daughter

Super Member
Both SteveB and stiggywiggy have liked this comment, and I am curious why. It is just reinforcing the OP - that there is this gulf between human rights and God.

Are you saying that because the principle of freedom of worship is not found in the Bible, that makes it okay for God to torture people who choose not to worship him? Not getting it.

There is no gulf between human rights and God. Find something else to claim, because this isn't working for you.
 

The Pixie

Well-known member
This is tedious.

It appears (and forgive me if I'm wrong) that you have your own idea of what a loving God would/should do. I don't find that to be unusual. Everyone has some thoughts on this.
To be clear here, I am not telling God what he should be doing. I am pointing out a logical contradiction in Christianity which on the one hand posits a loving God, someone we would expect to act perfectly morally, including upholding basic human rights, and on the other hand a petty, vindictive tyrant who chooses to torture anyone who dares not to love him.

I appreciate this comes up a lot, so apologies if you find it tedious. I am not aware of it being done from a human rights abuse angle on CARM before, so thought that would make it less tedious for people.

I recently heard a sermon, that puts it all in perspective.

In case you haven't figured it out, the world (our planet) is a highly dangerous place. Volcanoes, Tidal Waves, Earthquakes, Pestilence, Killer viruses, and other bugs/germs that harm us. Relentless diseases plague us. Snakes, alligators, bears and hissing reptiles inhabit the world. Global warming is coming and the Bible speaks of it:
Okay, I am aware of these things. I am not sure how any of that relates to the thread topic, but we can see where this goes.

2 Peter 3:5-10

5 For when they maintain this, it escapes their notice that by the word of God the heavens existed long ago and the earth was formed out of water and by water, 6 through which the world at that time was destroyed, being flooded with water. 7 But by His word the present heavens and earth are being reserved for fire, kept for the day of judgment and destruction of ungodly men.

8 But do not let this one fact escape your notice, beloved, that with the Lord one day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years like one day. 9 The Lord is not slow about His promise, as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish but for all to come to repentance.

10 But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, in which the heavens will pass away with a roar and the elements will be destroyed with intense heat, and the earth and its works will be burned up.
I am not sure that is global warming being described. I see no mention of rising sea level.

More importantly, I see nothing that connects to the issue of freedom of religion.

This is the creation of God. He uses it for his own purposes.

I cannot find any conflict between our Constitutional right to freedom of religion and God's admonishment against idolatry.
Really? So the right to freedom of religion says you can worship the Hindu gods with impunity, whilst God says if you do he will punish not just you, but your children, your grandchild, and there children and even their children.

Christians do believe in hell and we can generalize who might be headed that way. Now me, I leave that judgment to God. I'm far too sinful to make such judgments.
Do you think anyone who rejects Jesus will get into heaven?

Do you think anyone who accepts Jesus will get sent to hell?

Most Christians seem pretty sure the answer to both these is "no", which seems to indicate going to hell is dependant purely on whether or not you accept Jesus, which is to say, whether or not you love and worship the Christian God. Do you believe differently? I appreciate some Christians reject the idea of hell altogether.

My cousin is the infamous Dan Barker from the Freedom From Religion Foundation.
Can you tell me about Barker's infamy?

I ask because I am very much concerned this is him exercising his human right for freedom of religion, and as such this statement here seems - inadvertently - more on topic than anything else you say.

Is it he "infamous" in your view because he is exercising his right to freedom of religion?

If so, is the real issue here that you think the human right to freedom of religion should only apply to your own religion?

My cousin is the infamous Dan Barker from the Freedom From Religion Foundation. He still doesn't get it. He has had every blessing one could hope for and yet he complains and rages at God.
You seem to have a very egocentric view of religion. It is very odd that you think Barker should be a Christian because he has had a good life, and he should ignore all the pain and suffering going on right now all around the world that God could stop right now if he wanted to. And if God actually existed, of course.

Many Christians say "we live in a fallen world", but it's easily said. The truth is the world in scary place. It is also true that God does love you, but you still live in a world He created for his own purposes.
Right, and as far as I can tell, that purpose is to generate people who will love him. He is the ultimate narcissistic egomaniac, creating a vast universe and populating it with buillions of people with free will just so he can receive their love.

And if they fail him, boy does he get angry, casting them down to hell to suffer for eternity!

Which as a theology is fine; maybe that is how it really is. But how can we reconcile that with this claim that "God is love"?

If your point here is that God can do whatever the heck he wants because he is God, then okay, I agree. But that does not resolve the dichotomy that someone who is supposed to be perfectly good is the worst human rights abuser in history. If Christianity was to abandon the whole "God is love" thing, it would be fine; it would make sense. All the torture and disregard for humanity might still be judged as morally wrong, but if Christianity is no longer claiming God is good, then Christianity would be consistent; it would make sense.

But as it is, that is not the case. Christianity has an inconsistent view of God that on the one hand says he loves each and every one of us, and on the other that he tortures billions if they exercise their human right not to worship him.
 

Dizerner

Well-known member
To be clear here, I am not telling God what he should be doing. I am pointing out a logical contradiction in Christianity which on the one hand posits a loving God, someone we would expect to act perfectly morally, including upholding basic human rights, and on the other hand a petty, vindictive tyrant who chooses to torture anyone who dares not to love him.

It is the modern age that defines love as enabling one to do whatever one wants with no consequences. Love is not an enabler of evil, as 1 Cor. 13 says, "Love does not rejoice in iniquity."

Is it love to protect and enable someone to harm another person? Would you say no? But why not, if they cry, "You don't love me if you don't enable my ability to abuse!"

"Because that's not how I define love."

"Yea, but, you are talking about God abusing others!"

"Is it abuse to stop abuse? If not, why not? You could define abuse that way if you wanted to get what you wanted regardless of consequence!"

It is simply how you define abuse, as inflicting suffering on another for reasons you find insufficient. God has sufficient reasons. He is not harsh, he is severe... his love has qualifications...

God has the right to value himself above humans. God has the right to impose rules upon humans. God as the right to punish humans. The differentiation between harshness and severity, is that harshness does not desire the well-being of the subject, nor give any effort to attempt to help the subject. If God could in any way be more "cruel" than he is, that is, he could maximally inflict suffering, then he has to have at least "some" love and goodness even by your warped standard that makes humans not suffering the exalted and supreme value over God.

But the reason we can logically argue God is indeed, maximally good, is because he is maximally good within the framework of righteously and justly exalting himself.

Considering the argument that might makes right—who is to say God would be "unloving" even if he is harsh; when one could describe love as ennoblement to do evil, if one so wanted, any action at all could be deemed unloving. I could argue you are not "loving" God by harshly criticizing God's actions.

I am not, in fact, just arguing that might makes right—as the following cute cartoon illustrates how you see God:


God could be defined as a bully if God had no desire for or effort to help the well-being of his subjects.

But he does.
 

Furion

Well-known member
This was touched upon in another thread recently.

On the on hand we have the basic human right to freedom of religion:

Article 9: Freedom of thought, conscience and religion
1. Everyone has the right to freedom of thought, conscience and religion; this right includes freedom to change his religion or belief and freedom, either alone or in community with others and in public or private, to manifest his religion or belief, in worship, teaching practice and observance.

On the other we have God saying:

Exodus 20:3 “You shall have no other gods before Me.
4 “You shall not make for yourself [c]an idol, or any likeness of what is in heaven above or on the earth beneath, or in the water under the earth. 5 You shall not worship them nor serve them; for I, the Lord your God, am a jealous God, inflicting the [d]punishment of the fathers on the children, on the third and the fourth generations of those who hate Me, 6 but showing [e]favor to thousands, to those who love Me and keep My commandments.

Furthermore, many Christians seem to believe that anyone who fails to love and worship God will feel his wrath and will be punished by suffering in hell.

That is to say, anyone exercising their basic human right to freedom to religion will get tortured by God for doing so. Given the number of non-Christians who have died, this makes God the biggest human rights abuser ever.

I am curious how Christians relate this to the idea that "God is love".
God is love.

Those who stand against love have gotsta go.
 
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