Journal Entry #518
July 31st, 2011
I often see these quotes put up by Christians or believers of other faiths that they feel represent their beliefs. The vast majority of time I don’t think the person who made the quote or the person offering the quote really thinks what is said through.
Now at first glance and if you are viewing life a certain way these quotes might appear wonderful but anytime you are dealing with unverifiable, illogical or an unreasonable position or statement it will be unsound when examined with the former.
This was a quote put up by a Christian;
“Faith is forced consent. . . . In common parlance we say a man commands confidence. We do not trust a man simply because we have willed to, or even because we desire to. And we cannot distrust a man simply because we wish or will to do so. We trust a man because we have evidence that to us appears sufficient, evidence of trustworthiness.” –John Murray
And so with God.
Now here is the entire quote they used part of and then added the statement “And so with God”.
Faith is forced consent
“Faith is forced consent. . . . In common parlance we say a man commands confidence. We do not trust a man simply because we have willed to, or even because we desire to. And we cannot distrust a man simply because we wish or will to do so. We trust a man because we have evidence that to us appears sufficient, evidence of trustworthiness. When to our apprehension a man presents evidence of trustworthiness we cannot but trust him, even though we hate his trustworthiness and would wish the opposite to be the case. His trustworthiness may be the ruin of what we think to be our interests, but we cannot but trust him (e.g. the criminal who wants to evade justice, arraigned before a judge whom he believes to be just and fair, may do everything in his power to do away with the judge. But why? Because he trusts him.) We cannot but believe in his reliability and truthfulness.”
John Murray, “Faith,” in Collected Writings of John Murray (Edinburgh, 1977), II:237, italics his.
So let’s take apart the quote the Christian offered;
“Faith is forced consent. . . .
Faith is nothing of the sort, faith is believing something to be true that is not supported by verifiable or credible evidence. You want it to be true so you accept it as true even though you have no idea if it is or not. Forced consent of course are opposites so why say this? Pick a side here.
In common parlance we say a man commands confidence. We do not trust a man simply because we have willed to, or even because we desire to.
I completely disagree as everything we do we desire. It is our choice to trust or not to trust and it will be based on the reasons we see as valid whether they are or not.
And we cannot distrust a man simply because we wish or will to do so.
Of course we can…
We trust a man because we have evidence that to us appears sufficient, evidence of trustworthiness.” –John Murray
I do agree…
And so with God.
Again I agree as I must based on agreement with the first part but this brings us to the real question, how do we determine the evidence to be true, to be valid.
This is what it usually boils down to the evidence we chose to trust and to ignore. The problem with trusting god and I will say this in context with the gods of man is that there has not been one bit of good evidence offered up until this point and since there has been sufficient time to find it I expect none to ever be offered. Really what appears to be sufficient is just bad evidence and if that is all one needs to have trust in something or someone then trust is not truly valued as it should be.
Very few quotes in support of god ever make any sense but they do fulfill the desires a person may have.
One night I had a dream–
I dreamed I was walking along the beach with the Lord
and across the sky flashed scenes from my life.
For each scene I noticed two sets of footprints,
one belonged to me and the other to the Lord.
When the last scene of my life flashed before me,
I looked back at the footprints in the sand.
I noticed that many times along the path of my life,
there was only one set of footprints.
I also noticed that it happened at the very lowest
and saddest times in my life.
This really bothered me and I questioned the Lord about it.
“Lord, you said that once I decided to follow you,
you would walk with me all the way,
but I have noticed that during the most troublesome times in my life
there is only one set of footprints.
“I don’t understand why in times when I needed you most,
you should leave me.”
The Lord replied, “My precious, precious child,
I love you and I would never, never leave you
during your times of trial and suffering.
“When you saw only one set of footprints,
it was then that I carried you.”
If you think this through it is full of holes but it sure does sound comforting and nice. At times in our life we need some comfort some fantasy but eventually reality needs to be acknowledged. Maybe god should have prevented those terrible times in her life to begin with or created the world differently instead of being the saving daddy figure. He said I would never leave you and yet in my view to stand aside and watch someone suffer is leaving them. Now if this poem was about a human being who was there to help I think it would have more impact and value. I can break this down more but I get the point of the poem but think that including god in it is ridiculous unless it is just a metaphor. Sadly many will believe this god to be real.