Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

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Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby GethN7 » Wed Jul 24, 2019 3:19 am

Original here:

https://gethn7.blogspot.com/2019/07/rel ... lieve.html


Note: I have gone on record I'm a non-denominational Protestant, yet I do not actively hate anyone of any faith or no faith, but I wanted to explain why I cannot buy into the tenets of several belief systems in particular and why from a personal perspective.


Atheism: While this is technically the absence of faith or denial of a higher power, I'm covering this first just to cover all the bases.

My reason for not buying into atheism is that, if you apply logic, it has a pretty hopeless message. Apparently, we live, die, and that's it. Our memory may exist for future generations, but if humanity as a whole dies out, our existence ceases to matter.

I can understand agnostics a little better than I do atheists, but flat out saying we were born, will die, and that's it for our existence is one of the most fatalistic things I've ever heard, and I refuse to believe human life is that pointless.


Scientology: Let's pretend I don't believe L. Ron Hubbard was a lying fraudster, which I'm absolutely convinced of, so instead, let me just point out the inconsistencies with pure logic.

Scientology was preceded by Dianetics, which was pseudo-psychology invented before it became the basis of religion, and the actual backstory of Scientology itself has no backing whatsoever in any objective historical sense. Most other belief systems at least have some form of objective historical basis, but Scientology does not even have that.

When the foundation is that shoddy, how am I supposed to swallow anything else about it?


Buddhism: Don't get me wrong, I do find some of Buddhism's tenets admirable, and many emphasize virtues many Christians would find laudable. I even admit praise for its emphasis on the denial of vices and folly and rising above that which makes us petty and venal.

My problem again goes back to logic. While it's well and good to follow it on this Earth, if humanity ceases to be, and in fact, Earth itself ceases to be, what benefit arises from its teaching anymore?


Hinduism: It's a great source to mine for mythology and fiction, admittedly, but as a faith, you are required, upfront, to believe a lot of things that have been endlessly retconned over and over again over centuries, not to mention it a pretty India centric faith, Buddhism made better inroads elsewhere because Hinduism was pretty much tailored for one specific geographic location.


Islam: Islam has a problem with basic logic that I cannot resolve. It claims Jews and Christians have an imperfect version of God's revelations, but the inconsistencies pile up fast.

First off, the very beginning of the Qu'ran says humanity was created from a clot of congealed blood, whereas the Torah and Bible cite we came from dust. Also, for a religion that claims Abraham as a patriarch, it sure has a lot of naked contempt of the Jews and a lot of advocacy of putting nonbelievers to the sword, whereas Jews mostly set themselves apart from others on God's instructions, and Christians merely exported the basic tenets of Judaism minus the Jewish specific parts because the religious franchise was made available to Jews and Gentiles equally.

Islam rolls all that back and makes conversion an even MORE exclusive experience than the things it claims precedes it.


Mormonism: Logic makes this one easy to skewer. It's basically the Bible with a lot of fanfiction attached that cannot be backed up by archelogy or any other branch of history, and it introduces a lot of concepts neither Judaism or Christianity ever countenanced or supported.

My late grandfather said he didn't believe it but it had a good backstory, and I agree. It's entertaining in a fictional sense, but I in no way can buy into its legitimacy because all we have is Joseph Smith's word for it, and even other non-Christian faiths bring more to the table for the verifiable historical fact than that.

I could go on about other, more minor faiths, but the short version is that while faith is a key component of all of them when I try to reduce them to logically provable stuff, Judaism and Christianity at least have provable continuity and a high level of consistency.

I won't claim they are perfect and that they don't have mysteries or inconsistencies, that would be arrogant and foolish, but at the end of the day, I'm a Christian besides faith in the creed because it has the least amount of inconsistency compared to its competitors based on the available evidence, and I'm convinced Christianity logically follows from the foundation of Judaism.

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby ccgr » Thu Jul 25, 2019 12:59 am

Nice write-up as usual :)

Thanks for sharing!

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby ArcticFox » Mon Aug 05, 2019 10:57 pm

It's not obvious to me that there's value in writing a post purely to poke a stick at people for not sharing your views. Is that meant to open up a debate, or just take shots?
"He who takes offense when no offense is intended is a fool, and he who takes offense when offense is intended is a greater fool."
—Brigham Young

"Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus."
—Christopher Hitchens

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby GethN7 » Wed Aug 07, 2019 11:49 pm

It's not obvious to me that there's value in writing a post purely to poke a stick at people for not sharing your views. Is that meant to open up a debate, or just take shots?
This is a post I wrote concerning my personal experiences with faith.

I grew up in a Christian home, but there was a time I became aware of other faiths and I wanted to see if they had validity.

I consider myself a very logical person, so I tried to see if, from a logical perspective, these other faiths held up.

Based on that logic (a gift I credit God for), I determined Christianity made the most logical sense to believe in based on the objectively provable side of things. As to the faith part, even that makes the most logical sense, as Christianity doesn't require money or other special prerequisites, believing in things that don't square with what came before, nor requires I take the word of someone who cannot be fact checked.

In short, belief in God and his Son was measured on my own personal scales of reason, and they were not found wanting, hence my faith in them is ironclad based on that, and I wanted to share that epiphany I had with others who may be struggling with whether they should place their faith in God.

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby ArcticFox » Thu Aug 08, 2019 2:44 am

This is a post I wrote concerning my personal experiences with faith...
If you want to write about your faith, then write about it by all means. It's a good thing to testify to.

This post wasn't about faith, brother. It's a series of insults, nothing more, and frankly it comes across like a sort of virtue signaling. "See how holy I am? I would never believe in those other things!" Not saying that was your motive, but it's not a good look.

It's also weird to me that you're mixing the idea of coming to your belief by some sort of process of reason while at the same time talking about faith.

Matthew 16:13 - 17

13 When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?
14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.
15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am?
16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.
17 And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.

Peter knew who The Savior was because he directly received that testimony from Heavenly Father. He didn't piece it together through some kind of forensic or philosophical process, and he didn't figure it out by bashing others. He spoke of his faith simply and plainly.
"He who takes offense when no offense is intended is a fool, and he who takes offense when offense is intended is a greater fool."
—Brigham Young

"Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus."
—Christopher Hitchens

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby Sstavix » Thu Aug 08, 2019 3:46 am

Yeah, I'm disappointed you decided to target another Christian faith with your initial post as well. I certainly could find logical fallacies with many other Christian faiths as well, but I don't do that. Why not? Because regardless of our different denominations, we're all brothers and sisters in Christ. Rather than divide ourselves based on doctrinal differences, we really should be uniting in a solid front against our adversary.

Another thing to keep in mind is that most people in this world are not driven by logic. This is especially the case when it comes to faith, which is more emotion-driven than rational. (And if you want to get into faiths that are primarily focused on logic and reason... well, you've already dismissed atheists and agnostics. ;) )

What I have often seen is that those that justify their religion by logic alone are just as likely to use those same tools to pull themselves away from religion. They come up with (to them) perfectly rational, justifiable reasons not to go to church, or follow a certain faith, or whatever. The thing is, this is exactly what Satan wants - people to stop worshiping God and find ways to pull other people away as well.

I would say stop trying to use logic and reason, and use the Holy Spirit. Pray for the answers you seek, and act on the promptings you receive. God won't steer you wrong, but you need to trust in Him. Even if it makes no logical sense. ;)

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby GethN7 » Thu Aug 08, 2019 7:39 am

Yeah, I'm disappointed you decided to target another Christian faith with your initial post as well. I certainly could find logical fallacies with many other Christian faiths as well, but I don't do that. Why not? Because regardless of our different denominations, we're all brothers and sisters in Christ. Rather than divide ourselves based on doctrinal differences, we really should be uniting in a solid front against our adversary.

Another thing to keep in mind is that most people in this world are not driven by logic. This is especially the case when it comes to faith, which is more emotion-driven than rational. (And if you want to get into faiths that are primarily focused on logic and reason... well, you've already dismissed atheists and agnostics. ;) )

What I have often seen is that those that justify their religion by logic alone are just as likely to use those same tools to pull themselves away from religion. They come up with (to them) perfectly rational, justifiable reasons not to go to church, or follow a certain faith, or whatever. The thing is, this is exactly what Satan wants - people to stop worshiping God and find ways to pull other people away as well.

I would say stop trying to use logic and reason, and use the Holy Spirit. Pray for the answers you seek, and act on the promptings you receive. God won't steer you wrong, but you need to trust in Him. Even if it makes no logical sense. ;)
I'm sorry you feel that way, but this was not meant to be divisive.

As for Mormons, let me be clear. I have no grudge against Mormons, I have encountered many I believe are morally upright people, and while I don't concur with all their beliefs, I do believe that, insofar as their beliefs do not conflict with the Bible, they are essentially correct.

I do, however, find the material not contained in the original Bible to have a lot of dubious validity for archeological and historical reasons concerning the origins of Israelites in the Americas, and many Mormon specific beliefs come across as similar to Islam, which claims descent from Christianity but retcons itself as the final revelations of God, and frankly I find a lot of its specific theological precepts to be slightly Gnostic in some ways, another system of belief I cannot adhere to.

Overall, while I believe Mormonism to be broadly inspired by Christianity, I cannot put my faith in its specific teachings because they do not appear to conform to what existed prior to them. Christianity builds on the basis of Judaism and Jesus often cited prior teachings from Judaism, even explicitly confirming his message was not a repudiation but an extension of prior tradition.

Further, as to the use of reason, Galileo put it best:

"I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use and by some other means to give us knowledge which we can attain by them."

By that measure, I took everything I knew and experienced courtesy of my Christian upbringing and measured it by my knowledge of all other faiths and practices, even other denominations of Christianity that are generally considered "mainline".

The final analysis of all is why I consider myself nondenominational. I believe in the truth as espoused by the Scriptures and nothing else. I do not believe Mormons are necessarily wrong in their entirety, but I do not believe in the accuracy or nor validity of anything outside the basic precepts of Christianity that they practice. By the same token, it's why I do not align with any specific denomination like Baptists or Methodists. Again, while I believe they broadly fall under the inspiration of Christ, I do not put stock in their specific doctrinal differences.

In the end, when it is time for judgment, I believe all who believe the basics of Christ's teachings will be measured by that alone, based on the use of God-given reason concerning the truth. I do not judge anyone who disagrees, they are free to disagree with me on that, as God will be the only judge who matters.

If Men disagree with my own beliefs concerning what I consider spiritual truth, so be it. If I am wrong, I will be the first to prostrate myself before God and admit my error. Until then, I choose to follow my own personal convictions divined by God's truth as established by his Word.

In Isaiah 1:18, God had this to say:

"Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool."

It is by that token I came to assess the truths of the Word, and I believe all who examine their conscience before their walk with God will be justified in the days of his judgment of Men, no matter the name they give that walk with Him.

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby ArcticFox » Thu Aug 08, 2019 8:34 pm

I'm sorry you feel that way, but this was not meant to be divisive.
What was the effect you anticipated on people from those various systems you mentioned had read your post?

In other words, do you suppose a Hindu or Muslim would find that post non-divisive? Would you be surprised to learn that a Latter-Day Saint might find it troubling to be lumped in with Scientology, and that might have a divisive effect?
"He who takes offense when no offense is intended is a fool, and he who takes offense when offense is intended is a greater fool."
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"Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus."
—Christopher Hitchens

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby Sstavix » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:10 pm

Your criticism of the LDS church seems to be based on what others have (mistakenly) said about the church, rather than researching the faith yourself. So a question for you - did you read the Book of Mormon or talk to any LDS missionaries before drawing your conclusions? Or is it based primarily upon what you have read from other anti-LDS sources? Because at least one of the conclusions you've drawn is just patently false.
... I cannot put my faith in its specific teachings because they do not appear to conform to what existed prior to them. Christianity builds on the basis of Judaism and Jesus often cited prior teachings from Judaism, even explicitly confirming his message was not a repudiation but an extension of prior tradition.
The Book of Mormon frequently quotes from the Old Testament in its various passages. To say that it doesn't "conform" is an indicator, to me, of someone who hasn't read and studied the Book of Mormon him/herself.
Until then, I choose to follow my own personal convictions divined by God's truth as established by his Word.
So another question for you - is this a conclusion you have drawn based on your own logic and reasoning, or is this a path that you feel God has specifically told you to follow? If the former, then I would like to know your interpretation of Proverbs 3:5.
Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby GethN7 » Fri Aug 09, 2019 2:23 am

In my reply to both of the obviously offended gentlemen in this thread, I would like to apologize, I was clearly in gross underestimation how much I'd offend certain people.

That said, I refuse to recant a single word.

I'd like to add yes, I have checked out the Book of Mormon, albeit it was a very long time ago, and while it presents an interesting historical what if, I cannot find any way to make its account of Israelites in the Americas square with actual history. Until someone can present actual secular historical fact of such accounts (which Christianity and Judaism can do) that can be cross-referenced via multiple objective sources, I consider it's account to be as I said:

Entertaining fanfiction, but not something I would believe.

As for beliefs I consider heretical or at the very least not supported, here are a few of the major offenders (and this list is not exhaustive):

1. The idea of a Heavenly Mother in addition to the Trinity. (While Jesus' mother is honored to a degree, no actual doctrine would elevate her to equal status with the Trinity)
2. The concept of Apotheosis (the very idea we could stand as equals to Christ, that would make us equals to God, which is blasphemy)
3. The idea of other worlds under divine purview (even if they exist, this would be irrelevant for us and assumption to presume true at best)
4. The concept of performing penance for souls that have passed on (the old heresy of indulgences revived in another form, only revived in a nominally Prostestant-ish form)

I have other objections, but these four alone are more than enough to confirm to me that Mormonism does not factually square with the Bible, and I do not, in any way, accept any of the deuterocanon Mormonism elevates alongside the Bible to be valid, including the Pearl of Great Price, the Book of Mormon, and so on.

If my refusal to see Mormonism as valid troubles you gentlemen, I apologize, but I must adhere to what my conscience guided by reason and logic (and both I credit to God) has divined as truth. If you do not agree, we shall have to agree to disagree.

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby Sstavix » Fri Aug 09, 2019 4:01 am

It's not a problem to me if you have issues with the LDS doctrine. What I had a problem with was you determining (based upon your own conclusions, rather than any prompting from the Holy Spirit) that the LDS church is not a Christian church. Trust me that it is very much a Christian organization, based on the teachings of Jesus Christ, to the point where Jesus Christ is the center of the entire faith.

If you believe that Heavenly Father has told you to go a different way, then that's fine. I have no argument with that. I believe that God does have a plan for each of us, and will lead us in ways that He sees best... if we are willing to listen and obey. Likewise, I believe that Heavenly Father led me to the LDS church. At the time, I had no idea why (I was raised in a strictly nondenominational household), but I didn't want to be the kind of person to tell God "no." I have learned a lot since then - quite a bit through divine revelation myself, some of which do reinforce the teachings of the LDS church. And while I don't see myself leaving any time soon, if Heavenly Father directs me in a different direction, I will follow.

Touching back on the original topic, this is not a decision that came to me as a result of careful analysis and logical debate (an especially unusual approach for my INTJ personality type, too!) This was a conclusion drawn from spiritual promptings and prayer. So it was personal revelation that led me to the LDS church, rather than any form of convincing argument. In my opinion, spiritual decisions are something that can't be determined through logic and scientific or historic study. If there were conclusive evidence of the existence of God, then there wouldn't be any atheists, would there? ;) No, spiritual paths are individual and personal, and while experiences can be shared with others, no one else would truly understand until they experience those things themselves.

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby J.K. Riki » Fri Aug 09, 2019 12:58 pm

In my opinion, spiritual decisions are something that can't be determined through logic and scientific or historic study.
We're given both hearts and minds for a reason. Generally called to use both. God uses it all, after all. :)

As far as the larger topic, I have no qualms with anyone seeking God as they feel the need to. I don't think He refuses anyone who is earnestly seeking Him, and if it is through some means foreign to me then that's between Him and the person. Truth is truth, after all, and it destroys anything that is not truth as long as we are seeking truth. What is problematic is when people either don't bother seeking, or outright refuse to seek. That is the most dangerous territory to tread. (Not saying anyone here is doing that, only speaking in general terms.)

In the end, we will all likely be somewhat wrong. We will almost certainly get to the throne of God and He will show us all those places. Our willful earnest seeking and choice to lay down our pride and say "You are right, I was wrong" will likely be a big factor in how that conversation goes, I think. But that is more speculation than anything, and so I share it as such. :)

(Also for any Christians who feel the effects of being offended, I highly recommend the book Unoffendable by Brant Hansen. It walks through the wisdom of how Christians have given up their right to be offended, and how grace overwhelms such things. Great book, and a life-changing one for me personally.)

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby ArcticFox » Fri Aug 09, 2019 8:47 pm

In my reply to both of the obviously offended gentlemen in this thread, I would like to apologize, I was clearly in gross underestimation how much I'd offend certain people.
That's appreciated, and apology accepted of course... but for me, it isn't about being offended. I just think we're living in a time when we should really avoid being divisive with each other. There are already so many forces in the world trying to divide us up, and we don't need to give them any help. I do believe it wasn't your intention to be divisive, but please be aware that any time someone sends a message that contains criticism of others' beliefs, that's definitely NOT going to be received kindly.
That said, I refuse to recant a single word.
Fine with me. Just wanted you to be aware.
Entertaining fanfiction
You offer an apology, and then you say something like this.

Imagine for a moment how it would sound to you if a Jewish person said "The New Testament is entertaining fanfiction." How would you receive that? Honestly consider that for a moment. That's exactly how a Latter-Day Saint would take what you just said here. I understand that to you, the Book of Mormon isn't Scripture. To Latter-Day Saints it is. You don't have to agree, but you don't have to be insulting about it either.
As for beliefs I consider heretical or at the very least not supported, here are a few of the major offenders (and this list is not exhaustive):

1. The idea of a Heavenly Mother in addition to the Trinity. (While Jesus' mother is honored to a degree, no actual doctrine would elevate her to equal status with the Trinity)
2. The concept of Apotheosis (the very idea we could stand as equals to Christ, that would make us equals to God, which is blasphemy)
3. The idea of other worlds under divine purview (even if they exist, this would be irrelevant for us and assumption to presume true at best)
4. The concept of performing penance for souls that have passed on (the old heresy of indulgences revived in another form, only revived in a nominally Prostestant-ish form)
Up for a debate on those points?
I have other objections, but these four alone are more than enough to confirm to me that Mormonism does not factually square with the Bible,
.. in your opinion.
If my refusal to see Mormonism as valid troubles you gentlemen, I apologize, but I must adhere to what my conscience guided by reason and logic (and both I credit to God) has divined as truth. If you do not agree, we shall have to agree to disagree.
It doesn't trouble me. What bugs me is when someone says they don't mean to be divisive and insulting while saying divisive and insulting things. If you really don't care about being insulting toward people for not sharing your views (and this isn't just about LDS, but all the examples you provided in your OP) then just be honest about it.

To clarify, my reaction here isn't offense. I just think posts like that do more harm than good in this day and age.
"He who takes offense when no offense is intended is a fool, and he who takes offense when offense is intended is a greater fool."
—Brigham Young

"Don't take refuge in the false security of consensus."
—Christopher Hitchens

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby Sstavix » Sat Aug 10, 2019 2:52 am

I wish we still had a "like" button on these forums... :wink:

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Re: Religions I Personally Cannot Believe In and Why (And Why I Do Believe In Christ)

Postby ccgr » Sun Aug 11, 2019 9:02 pm

I miss the like buttons too, it's like Sam's Club, you fall in ,love with something and it goes away


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