Minister is straight out of 'dark ages'

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In response to the letter from the (supposed) Rev. Timothy Fellows ("Expect 'acts of God' on sinful world," June 9), in which he blames the increase in the number of and the deadly consequences of natural disasters on the supposedly "ungodliness" of the people affected and our "ungodly" nation, etc.:

First of all, Mr. Fellows seems to be a dangerous man capable of committing whatever atrocity he deems necessary to bring about his delusions of what he considers "Gods will." Following his train of thought I offer the following from the Greek philosopher Epicurus:

"Is God willing to prevent evil but unable? Then he is not omnipotent. Is God able to prevent evil but unwilling? Then he is malevolent. Is God both able and willing to prevent evil? Then (he being all powerful and all knowing) from whence springs evil? Is God either unwilling or unable? Then why call him God?"

Thus we are left with a quandary that all the apologists are unable to explain to satisfaction:

- God is all-powerful and all-knowing.

- God is all-good and all-loving.

- Evil and suffering exist, and God allows and sanctions it.

Conclusion: Either God is not omnipotent, or God is evil and not worthy of worship.

A God who would willfully cause the suffering caused by these natural disasters is not a God of mercy, love and kindness, but of sadism, hatred and narcissism. The God that Jesus spoke of does not possess these last characteristics.

Just as it was not the blind man's fault that he was born blind, it is not the fault of the victims of these natural disasters that the disasters occurred.

It is very frightening to see so many people still living in the dark ages of witch-burning, inquisitional mentality and superstition-based writings that contradict one another and support murder, rape, slavery, theft, lying, genocide, racism, xenophobia and other immoral acts.

Cassandra Harris

Augusta

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JesusSavesAtCitiBank
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JesusSavesAtCitiBank 06/16/11 - 01:29 am
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Oh my god! A voice of reason

Oh my god! A voice of reason in the CSRA! I didn't think it was possible until now....

Dixieman
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Dixieman 06/16/11 - 02:09 am
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Perhaps the evil that happens

Perhaps the evil that happens prevents a greater evil. Old story about the Russian peasant whose son's leg was cut off in an accident, cursed God for this evil he could not understand, etc. Then the Czar's soldiers came into the village and took all the able-bodied young men for soldiers and all were killed -- only the peasant's lucky son survived.
Also read the Book of Job.
Also the letter writer assumes she understands the world better than God. She does not.

momster59
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momster59 06/16/11 - 07:34 am
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So dixieman, you're saying

So dixieman, you're saying that an omnipotent, loving, caring God has to allow evil and suffering to prevent more evil and suffering? Then he is not omnipotent. How about he created the Earth to have a crust floating on an interior of magma which shifts and causes earthquakes and volcanic eruptions (every kid knows this by about the 4th or 5th grade at the latest), and that winds are caused by the cool air falling meeting the warm air rising combined with the Coriolis affect (again every kid knows this).

As for the book of Job? Don't even get me started on the book of Job, I could write a thesis. God calls Satan (who is minding his own business, not even noticing Job) and initiates a wager that Job will love him no matter what happens to him. Then God sits by while Satan is allowed to torture this righteous (slave owning, by the way) man for no reason. God comes in occasionally and taunts Job about his complaints and acts like a bully and even when it is over, doesn't ever explain to Job why he suffered. Well, I'll tell him - he suffered just for God and Satan's amusement. Not a very good example, I've read the book, just recently finished reading it again after discussing it with a friend.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/16/11 - 09:12 am
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Cassandra, Cassandra. Your

Cassandra, Cassandra. Your personal objections to God have been explained many times, but those who keep looking for any excuse to try and avoid God are certainly persistent.

First, what is "good"? From your letter you seem to be the one who will define "good" for humanity. There is no God, except Cassandra, right? Personal pride is a poor reason for rejecting God, don't you think? 'Who are YOU to judge God and tell Him what to do? Blatant arrogance. The Bible tells us that the reason bad things are in the world is because of man's rebellion against God. It was our choice to rebel against God, and God honors human free will -- even to the point of allowing the world to sometimes suffer the consequences of its rebellion. Don't blame God for our problems.

From a human perspective, how can we know what is truly good in the long-term? Only one with omniscience knows what is for the long-term best. Are you omniscient? God will often allow "bad" things to happen to accomplish a greater good. The best example is Christ's death on the cross -- a horrible, "bad" injustice by all human standards, but it resulted in the greatest good humanity will ever know.

We cannot always understand why "bad" things happen, especially to "good" people. But, we can never see the "big picture" as God can. Like childbirth, terrible pain and suffering can oftentimes lead to some of the greatest blessings a human can experience. Are you a mom? If not, ask one. They'll tell you they'd endure all the pain again in a heartbeat in order to have the greater good of their child. Ask you own mom.

Please refrain from pontificating about things you really haven't thought through very well. Your letter is nothing but a philosophical "grabbing at straws" to try and justify personal arrogance of denying what should be obvious. Stop playing God. Instead, thank God that He is over all and will eventually bring an end to all injustice and wrong -- in HIS time, not ours.

Regarding whether or not the nation's problems are a judgment from God, who knows? Pastor Fellows does not. But, neither do you. Both of your are free to express your opinions, but you do not have the right to publicly insult Pastor Fellows simply because you disagree with him. Who is really in the "dark ages" here? Such intolerance!

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/16/11 - 07:45 am
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If you have read Job as you

If you have read Job as you claim, you should remember that God is very sarcastic regarding Job's tendency to question God's power and motives. God put Job in his place very quickly, and Job apologized for spouting off about things he did not truly understand.

I think we can all learn a lot from Job, and don't fall into the same trap.

momster59
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momster59 06/16/11 - 08:11 am
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Yes, God is very sarcastic,

Yes, God is very sarcastic, condescending and downright ugly in the way he treats Job. Very. Job doesn't understand because he has done nothing. God just wanted to satisfy a bet with Satan. This is not God, this is a make believe story written by primitive man during the iron age. The story is not original to the author, but predates the writing by several hundred years. It is a fairytale and a poor excuse of one at that. What I learned from Job is to stand up when you are right and have done nothing wrong to the hypocrites and "righteous", "pious" people who judge, hate and discriminate in the name of their deity.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 06/16/11 - 08:35 am
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Just because no one is sure

Just because no one is sure who or when the book of Job was written does not nullify the book’s inspiration. Some think it was written by Moses, some put it around the time of Solomon and other as late as the Babylonian Exile. There are several reasons to believe that this is historically true. Job is mentioned along with Noah and Daniel, two other historical figures in the book of Ezekiel and James, the brother of Jesus, refers to Job as an example of perseverance. Whether it is based on a true occurrence or not it appears Ms. Harris has totally missed the meaning for the book of Job and the display of God’s awesome power to totally restore Job and more, the lesson of faithfulness and perseverance in times of trouble. What confidence God had in Job to allow Satan to cause such suffering and in the end to prove that God's love will win victorious over Satan's destruction.

allhans
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allhans 06/16/11 - 08:42 am
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I know nothing about either

I know nothing about either person but from reading the LTE I would deem Harris much more dangerous than Fellows.
This letter is absurd.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/16/11 - 09:09 am
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Momster, I think you'd better

Momster, I think you'd better find a more credible, scholarly commentary on the Book of Job. You've studied with quite a liberal bias, and you've missed the point of the entire book, I'm afraid.

You are correct that Job was a righteous man, and I think that is the point. Sometimes "bad" things do happen to "good" people. It's not punishment. Things happen so God can work a greater good. The fact that we are talking about Job thousands of years after his life is testament to that fact, is it not? Job is a great example for us, and we can learn from him.

If all you learned from Job was to "stand up" for yourself, then you missed the entire point of the book. Job is all about humility and faithfulness, not self-assertion. You've been sorely misled regarding Job, I'm afraid.

nofanofobama
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nofanofobama 06/16/11 - 09:34 am
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original sin in the bible was

original sin in the bible was that man wanted to be god.. the ruler of his own destiny..deciding wrong and right..when there is no objective truth.. GOD.. there is no truth. everyone is a little god making rules as he or she goes..which is why we are in such a sad state. while theologically i would probably have have major differences with rev. fellows in a sense he is right...try to explain quickly...absence of god equals chaos..Paul state in romans that we are in the image of god that even after the fall we thru our conscience know right and wrong and that we can not live up to very own conscience and that our very consciene condems us. ..CALVIN says that GOD didnot entirely leave us when HE was rejected because we do not have utter chaos and some semblance of order. this is known as common grace . classical christianity also teaches that we are waitng on the return of CHRIST.... mans reject of GOD caused also the earth [see romans] to lose its natural order in a perfect world. which is why the bible talk also of a new heaven and earth.. finite beings trying to define an infinite being is hopless, misleading and impossible. leaving man to his own folly and a world losing its order[storms, floods , famine ,draught etc} . is part of the rejection of GOD.

momster59
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momster59 06/16/11 - 09:46 am
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The story of Adam and Eve

The story of Adam and Eve makes no sense from the standpoint of a loving father. He creates Adam and Eve with no knowledge of good and evil (right and wrong). He then places the tree in the garden (why, if he hadn't set this up?). He then allows the serpent to tempt them, who, without the knowledge of good an evil cannot understand that it is wrong to disobey. Once they have eaten from the tree he then curses not only them, but all their offspring for all eternity, Yup, that's a just, moral, loving father for you. Only AFTER they have eaten from the tree of knowledge of good and evil does he place an angel to guard the tree of Life. He should have set a guard on the tree of Good and Evil, shouldn't he? He made them with no knowledge of right from wrong then punishes them and all their descendants for all eternity for doing wrong. Another iron age fairy tale that makes no sense and portrays God as malevolent.
Again, the original LTE points out that God is not responsible for disasters, the way the Earth is causes them. nofan, you show your lack of understanding of the natural world and how it works.

By the way Fiat, thank you for the compliment.

momster59
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momster59 06/16/11 - 09:51 am
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PCnomo, I make no such

PCnomo, I make no such allegations against God, I only state that these iron age stories that portray God in such childish ways are just that, stories that were written by a primitive man who did not understand the natural world around him. To use such stories to explain that God is angry with us and that is why natural, easily explainable, predictable events occur is insulting.

PCnomo
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PCnomo 06/16/11 - 10:09 am
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Momster, I agree with that to

Momster, I agree with that to a point. I think it stems from the "God is gonna get you" mentality espoused by many so called men of God like Robertson, Falwell and the like. Supposedly supported by the idiotic ramblings of Paul in Revelations. I am quite sure some fool will be expecting God to provide an earthquake to show his displeasure when the gay parade return to Augusta this year.
However, the Bible and other sacred texts contains much to benefit mankind if we can look beyond the literal and see the allegory as the lesson it is meant to be.
Incidentally, leaving aside the 'written' part, wouldn't iron age stories and primative man also apply to the Native American legends you respect?

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/16/11 - 10:15 am
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Mom, you are judging God and

Mom, you are judging God and telling Him what He should do! Don't you see that? Who are you to argue with God? You didn't learn much from studying Job, did you?

Here's the deal. Yes, God could have created robots that bowed to his every whim. He could have made us love and obey him. But, coerced love is not real love,is it? He decided, in his infinite wisdom, to allow us the freedom of choice to love/obey or not. You say, "He should have set a guard on the tree of Good and Evil, shouldn't he?" ABSOLUTELY NOT! That's nuts. Why would he do that? As beings created with a will and a choice, he gave A&E that choice -- the choice of obedience or defiance. Same choice he gives us today. God respects us that much. He will not make us love or obey him. It's up to us. I greatly appreciate and respect that about God.

You are dead wrong again about "The Curse". God blocked A&E from the Tree of Life because of their sin. He would not have them exist eternally in a sinful state apart from God. Instead, they would die physically, and God would send the "Seed of Woman" (i.e., Christ) to rectify the situation so A&E and their kids could be with God again. That's the story of Eden. It's the story of a merciful, just God that solved our problem the only way it could be solved.

I'm sorry you don't agree with God, and that you claim to know better than He. That is your right to think you have a better way. But, I'd be very careful in telling God that he is wrong and that you know best. Job tried that. Didn't work, remember?

momster59
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momster59 06/16/11 - 10:19 am
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Legends is the key word and

Legends is the key word and understanding that they are stories made by people to teach lessons of man and explain phenomenon is important to acknowledge. However, when was the last time you heard Native American's blaming the Great Spirit (which is the belief that all living things are connected in one spirit or energy) brings about evil and injustice just to promote worship of itself? Apples and oranges even as an example.

InChristLove
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InChristLove 06/16/11 - 10:23 am
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Though Adam and Eve lacked

Though Adam and Eve lacked knowledge of good and evil before eating from the tree, that doesn't necessarily mean they had no understanding of obedience and disobedience, or that they were totally ignorant of right and wrong. Children lack moral knowledge and need to be taught right from wrong. Yet children are not completely devoid of moral knowledge, either: they know that when another child cuts in front of them in line or takes the toy they were playing with, they have a right to object. Children don't have to be taught that there is such a thing as right and wrong, or that hurting people is wrong. They don't have to be taught to feel guilty when they do something wrong. What they do have to be taught is which particular actions are wrong or will result in someone getting hurt.

momster59
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momster59 06/16/11 - 10:25 am
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howcanweknow more than 2/3

howcanweknow more than 2/3 of the people on this planet do not believe that the stories in the bible are tales of men. If you should choose to believe them as the absolute word of God instead of allegorical stories of man then have at it. If you choose to worship a view of God based on these stories in which he condones so much genocide, slavery, decrees the death penalty for everything from working on a Sunday to stoning your rebellious teenager, to stoning a woman who was raped but no one heard her cry out, that is your prerogative.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/16/11 - 10:27 am
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"Legends" is a big

"Legends" is a big assumption. Maybe no one today can prove that Job actually exists, but neither can you prove he is fictitious. The New Testament mentions Adam and Job by name. If you believe in the integrity of the New Testament (and there is a ton evidence to substantiate that), then I'm going to side with the idea that Job and Adam were real personages. You certainly can't prove otherwise.

momster59
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momster59 06/16/11 - 10:33 am
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I have neither the space nor

I have neither the space nor the time, but can show inconsistency after inconsistency, mistake after mistake, falsehood after falsehood in the OT. You are free to believe as you choose in spite of all the errors contained within. If you would like to know more, rather that list what I have already discovered myself, you can look it up in a source called skepticsbible.com, there are other excellent sources, but this is an actual bible.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/16/11 - 10:37 am
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Thanks for avoiding issue. I

Thanks for avoiding issue. I didn't think you could substantiate your points.

People have tried to "prove" contradictions and falsehoods in the Bible for centuries. Guess what? They are dead and the Bible is still here. Believe me, if anyone, anywhere had solid proof that the Bible was a lie, don't you think (after 2000 years) we'd all know it by now.

Solid scholarship always finds truth. Prejudice and personal agendas will always be able to come up with objections in spite of the truth.

TrukinRanger
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TrukinRanger 06/16/11 - 10:37 am
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Oh geeze.. this is torture...
Unpublished

Oh geeze.. this is torture... I can't even finish reading these posts. Cassandra.. great letter- don't let these other people get you down. God gave us free will and (some) the intelligence to know what to do with that free will. I doubt it was meant to be hoarded like little sheep and forced to believe everything that these Dark Age HUMANS wrote in a book full of fairy tales. Now excuse me while I go pray to Santa Claus and the Easter Rabbit

nofanofobama
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nofanofobama 06/16/11 - 10:39 am
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momster **i tried to explain

momster **i tried to explain in a thelogical way why there are natural disaster..what has that to do with the works of a natural world..you may not agree with scripture but that does not make you right..we all enter our world view with presuppositions..it still a matter of faith ..pure and simple...and to think different is naive...i base mine on a belief in objective truth you do not. it still a matter of faith..

momster59
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momster59 06/16/11 - 10:41 am
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Wow! When did Jesus enter

Wow! When did Jesus enter the picture? He wasn't mentioned in either Mr. Fellows letter, today's letter or any of my posts. That's quite a leap of "faith" you took there hcwk. Got to give you credit for being able to stretch your imagination. Personally, got nothing against Jesus, he said a lot of very beautiful things that many Christians seem to forget
Love your neighbor as yourself
Love your enemies and pray for them
Turn the other cheek
Sell everything you have and give to the poor
Take care of your fellow human being
Don't judge others
If you tell someone his story and they don't want to listen, shake the sand from your feet and move on
and much, much more.

Nope, overall no problem with Jesus, or Buddha (who said pretty much the same things almost 600 years earlier. As a matter of fact Gandhi and I are of like mind on him
"Like your Christ, I do not like your Christians. They are so unlike your Christ." - Mahatma Gandhi

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/16/11 - 10:50 am
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Mom, your shallow

Mom, your shallow understanding of Christianity is showing.

Here's the difference: Jesus claimed over and over to be God in the flesh -- Yahweh, God, etc. Buddha basically taught there is no one God. So, in contrast to your claim, Jesus and Buddha taught completely opposite ideas at the most fundamental level. They both cannot be right. One is correct, and the other is a liar (or at least confused).

Whom do you believe? Jesus or Buddha? They both cannot be right. Logic dictates one is correct and one is wrong.

I too agree that many Christians seldom act like Christ. That is unfortunate, but again, Christians are sick people who need a Savior. Hence, the need for Jesus.

It's no stretch at all to bring up Jesus. He's always the crux of the issue. He's what sets Christianity apart from every man-made religion and philosophy. If Jesus is indeed teaching the truth, then Buddha, Ghandi, Muhammad,etc. are all wrong. If the others are correct, then Jesus was a lying megalomaniac.

It is we who must made the decision as to how we view Christ. That is and always will be the big decision for us.

PCnomo
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PCnomo 06/16/11 - 10:56 am
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Momster says :- Legends is

Momster says :- Legends is the key word and understanding that they are stories made by people to teach lessons of man and explain phenomenon is important to acknowledge.
Exactly. And the same technique is used by the bible. Legends, stories parables and allegories designed to teach lessons. It saddens me that so many people are in the habit of taking the bible literally and miss the wisdom in its pages.

PCnomo
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PCnomo 06/16/11 - 11:00 am
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Ooops. :))

Ooops. :))

momster59
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momster59 06/16/11 - 10:57 am
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hcwk - never said Jesus and

hcwk - never said Jesus and Buddha didn't have any differences, just that most of what Jesus said was said before. (by the way, others said it before Buddha, but the similarities between what the two stated is quite significant) Now, I have repeatedly said you and others are free to believe whatever you desire. Some may blame God for natural disasters and illnesses and fatal accidents all they want. Their prerogative. My point is not to make or unmake a Christian (or other religion) of anyone, but to encourage people to think of what they are really claiming and on what these claims are based. I've got a lot to do, so please understand your future replies will be to a computer that is turned off, lol.
Peace, love and joy on your path.

howcanweknow
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howcanweknow 06/16/11 - 11:04 am
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Mom, I appreciate your idea

Mom, I appreciate your idea to "encourage people to think of what they are really claiming and on what these claims are based." That is EXACTLY what I am trying to do as well -- especially in terms of the Bible.

Sorry you've decided to avoid trying to defend your points. I think we had an interesting discussion going, but I can understand why you have chosen to avoid confronting Christ. Jesus brings us to a decision about Him. We cannot avoid it, try as we might. You can shut off your computer today, but Jesus will still be there tomorrow with the same decision before you: Is Jesus Christ God Incarnate, or is he a liar?

You can't run forever. You'll need to answer that question eventually, as will everyone else. If you'd like more information, just ask.

It is my wish that you will not find peace until you settle your issues regarding Jesus. No one can truly be at peace until they are at peace with Jesus -- one way or the other.

nofanofobama
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nofanofobama 06/16/11 - 12:00 pm
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mom...perhaps when you

mom...perhaps when you re-boot you will also realize that you too need to be encouraged to re-evaluate your claims...we all live by faith..claims by you will never convince me nor mine will convince you but there is a universal truth. and thats is a part of the universal truth, that we have to be shown truth... and as paul says in romans if christ was not resurrected then we are to be pitied among all..he was shown and believed, so was i.

Crime Reports and Rewards TV
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Crime Reports and Rewards TV 06/16/11 - 01:26 pm
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After God created everything

After God created everything in only six days he looked around and saw it was all good and God gave dominion (OWNERSHIP) over the world to man. Then man disobeyed God, becoming a VIRUS to the mathematical code (BALANCE) which comprises all creation, (See SCIENCE; Math code found to comprise everything) doing EXACTLY what God told him not to do which resulted in Title to the world being tranferred into Lucifer's name which caused the fall of ALL CREATION in a slow motion fall exibited in the form of earthquakes, tornadoes, disease, war and lack of provision..

So God gave his only Son to redeem the fallen & is working day and night to STOP MAN from sinning, hurting himself & all creation.

Man has been SINNING nonstop and HURTING everything no matter how many times God bails him out, yet our sinning and disobedience is GODS FAULT?

We have FREE WILL and WE have FREELY and WILLFULLY done everything we can to hurt everything we can no matter how many times God has tried to help us..

Man won't even obey their own doctors and EAT RIGHT or STOP SMOKING YET THAT IS all their doctors fault too? See HOW fallen man is? There is only ONE NAME upon which man MUST call upon for salvation & that name is Jesus.

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